Here are two good posts to read - the first is from Pulse360 Blog and is a sky-is-falling viewpoint. The second is better and is from Jordan's blog (the CEO of the startup I work for) and gives a good analysis of the value to Google and why they made the acquisition.
There are a lot of terms that I wasn't familiar with several months ago, so here is my cheat sheet of terms:
- banner advertising - wide advertisement usually at the top of a page
- inventory - this is what web page publishers have to offer, the space on their pages and the audience that will view those pages
- remnant inventory - areas of a website that are not very popular and the web page publisher cannot charge lots of money for ad placement (because there are no viewers)
- ad network - provider of ad listings
- eCPM - effective click-per-mille (which is click-per-thousand page views)
- creative - the 'creative content' that shows up in the ad listing. Google made big bucks doing just text and links and left the annoying flashing ads to others.
- AdSense network - the Google system that provides ad listings to folks publishing web pages. It's supposed to provide an ad listing that is highly relevant to the page it is injected into, but that sometimes doesn't work.
(more words here)
It's interesting that the space on web pages is called 'inventory' - coming from Amazon I had a different view of 'inventory'. There are a lot of recurring themes between the world of product catalogs and inventory management that I am familiar with and the new world of online advertising. Maybe it'll all make sense eventually.