Prebid Universal Creative


The Prebid Universal Creative (PUC) is a collection of rendering routines that can pull a particular ad ID from Prebid’s cache and do the right thing to display it. The scripts are generally entered into the ad server for when a Prebid ad has won the auction. There are a number of use cases:

Use Case PUC file Alternate Approach
web banner: iframe banner.js (or creative.js) Banner and Outstream Video iframes
web banner: safeframe banner.js (or creative.js) Banner Safeframes
web outstream video: iframe video.js (or creative.js) Banner and Outstream Video iframes
web outstream video: safeframe n/a Outstream renderers each choose where to render differently, but none writes to the safeframe.
AMP banner: always safeframe amp.js (or creative.js) n/a
native: iframe native.js (or native-render.js) n/a
native: safeframe native.js (or native-render.js) n/a

Note that as of PUC v1.15, the recommended way of loading the creative in the ad server involves using the hb_format ad server key-value. Before 1.15, the ad server needed to load creative.js which covered banner and outstream video, or native-render.js for native. 1.15 simplifies this by allowing the ad server creative to load banner.js, video.js, or native.js, which can be done programmatically using ad server macros. e.g.

<script src=""></script>

This loads the PUC from the Prebid-maintained location. Your managed service provider may have a different location.

Features of the PUC

What the PUC does for Web iframe Banners/Outstream

  1. Simply calls the Prebid.js renderAd function

What the PUC does for Web Safeframe Banners

  1. Calls PostMessage to get the winning ad from Prebid.js
  2. Creates an iframe of the appropriate size and displays the winning ad within it

What the PUC does for AMP and Mobile Apps

  1. Updates the size of the iframe to the size of the winning ad.
  2. Retrieves the body of the creative from Prebid Cache based on the UUID
  3. If the ‘burl’ parameter is present, creates a tracking pixel. Includes special support for triggering the viewable billing url for mobile MRAID creatives.
  4. If the ‘nurl’ parameter is present, creates the appropriate HTML to fire the notice URL.
  5. If the ‘wurl’ parameter is present, creates a tracking pixel. This is needed for Programmatic Guaranteed support.
  6. Resolves any ${AUCTION_PRICE} macro in the creative body.

What the PUC does for Native

  1. Retrieves the native attributes from the winning ad.
  2. Coordinates the rendering of the native ad using the template method specified by the publisher.

Alternate Approaches

Some publishers prefer to not load the extra creative.js code at render time due to a tiny but measurable impact on measurement discrepancies.

While Prebid recommends the use of creative.js because we regularly add features and fix bugs, publishers may choose to hardcode the functionality into their ad server creatives.

They would do this differently for each of the scenarios below.

Alternate method for Banner and Outstream Video iframes

If you only ever need to display non-safeframed banner and outstream-video creatives, you may use the simple approach of just calling the Prebid.js renderAd function directly:

<script> var w = window; for (i = 0; i < 10; i++) { w = w.parent; if (w.pbjs) { try { w.pbjs.renderAd(document, '%%PATTERN:hb_adid%%'); break; } catch (e) { continue; } } } </script>

Alternate Method for Banner Safeframes

See the example at

This is basically just part of the PUC that’s been isolated to be standalone.

Further Reading