Header Bidding Trafficking with Prebid Step by Step

Publishers new to header bidding can use this guide to set up header bidding trafficking for Prebid in Google Ad Manager. Unlike a line item setup, header bidding trafficking provides publishers with precise bid prices to compete in the auction and no need for header bidding creatives. It also provides unified reporting, and a straightforward workflow. These instructions describe only the specific settings required for header bidding trafficking; they are not intended to be comprehensive instructions that replace or duplicate the GAM documentation.

  • If you prefer to use line items to manage your header bidding setup, visit Line item setup.
  • For how to migrate from line items to header bidding trafficking, visit Header bidding trafficking and the corresponding FAQ. These instructions also describe how to run an experiment to show potential revenue uplift from migrating to header bidding trafficking from a line item setup.


Before you begin, we recommend you read through our Planning Guide to make sure you know what your configuration is going to look like and you’ve thoroughly documented your decisions.


To use header bidding trafficking, you must:

  • Be on Google Ad Manager 360.
  • Use a “standard implementation” of Prebid.js.
  • Use Google Publisher Tag (GPT) on your website.

Note: You don’t have to set up any line items, including price priority line items, to use header bidding trafficking.


First, configure Prebid.js to collect bids from your selected bidders and pass those bids onto Ad Manager. For details on tagging changes, visit Getting Started for Developers.

Enable Header Bidding for you Ad Manager Network

  1. Sign in to Google Ad Manager.
  2. Click Delivery, then Bidders.
  3. Click the Header bidding tab.
  4. Click Get started to enable Prebid trafficking for the network, if it’s not already enabled.

Get Started with Prebid

  1. Review each detected bidder.

Review Bidders

For each bidder, there are three configuration options:

  • Enable SafeFrame: When enabled, ads returned by the bidder will render inside of a SafeFrame. Bidders may vary in their compatibility with SafeFrame.
  • Enable optimized Private Auction deals: When enabled, bids that include a deal ID will enter the auction at the optimized Private Auction priority. If disabled, such bids will continue to work with any relevant line items in your network.
  • Allow ads on child-directed requests: When enabled, the associated bidder’s ads may show on inventory that is classified in Ad Manager as child-directed.
  1. Click Continue.
  2. Select Run Prebid on entire network

Run Prebid

  1. Click Finish. Your Ad Manager UI should look like this, with your own bidders and specified configuration settings listed.


Header bidding reporting

Historical reporting in Ad Manager helps you understand how header bidding is performing.

  • Use the Bidder dimension to see performance by exchange. In Data Transfer files, this is called Buyer Network.
  • Add the Demand Channel dimension to see whether buyers accessed your inventory through header bidding (the Demand Channel dimension has a value of “Header bidding”). This is called Product in Data Transfer files.

Using protections with header bidding

To exclude the header bidders from the auction:

  • Create an inventory exclusion protection.
  • Select the header bidding demand source and appropriate targeting.
  • To exclude certain formats from Header Bidding Trafficking, you can create an inventory exclusion that targets the relevant hb_format key-value. Header Bidding Trafficking supports display and outstream video, but not native ads.