The Adzerk Developer Hub

Welcome to the Adzerk developer hub. You'll find comprehensive guides and documentation to help you start working with Adzerk as quickly as possible, as well as support if you get stuck. Let's jump right in!

How Adzerk Works

What is Adzerk?

Adzerk is the backend infrastructure to your custom ad server. Rather than building an entire ad platform from scratch, you can instead hook into server-to-server APIs for access to:

  • Custom targeting and tracking tools
  • Ad decision engine
  • Revenue optimizer
  • 1st party data management platform
  • Automation tools for campaign creation and reporting

Ad Serving Infrastructure

Custom Ad Creation

Rather than JavaScript fixed ad codes, Adzerk's APIs integrate directly with your CMS. This enables the creation of any ad unit you want, including integrated native ads that mirror your organic content. Examples include Promoted Posts, Sponsored Listings, Sponsored Recipes/Ingredients, Sponsored Locations, and more.

Ad Decision API

It's JSON in and out. Send us a request and you'll get details about the winning ad (image, text, CTA, metadata, impression pixel, click URLs, special event URLs, etc), which you can then insert dynamically into your custom ad unit.

Ad Decision Engine

Adzerk saves you the need to build an ad decision algorithm. Why even have one? Because a robust algorithm allows you to offer complex targeting options, as well as maximize ad revenue.

The Adzerk decision engine incorporates the following inputs (along with many others) when returning the right ad for each ad request:

  • Targeting details ("I want to target only 30-year-old males")
  • Revenue optimization ("I want to show ads with the highest CPMs first")
  • Campaign goals ("I need the advertiser's budget to last exactly one week")

A smart ad decision engine is the cornerstone of any successful ad server.

Custom Targeting

Adzerk makes it easy to target ads by whatever metric you want. You just need to:

  1. Set up campaigns with the targeting you want
  2. Pass data about the ad impression in the Decision API request
  3. Get a response containing just the ad that matches the targeting criteria

Custom Event Tracking

Tracking just impressions and clicks is so mid-2000s. Offer your advertisers full insight into how users interacted with the ad, including up/down votes, shares, conversions, commenting, likes, and more.

Interested in learning more about how Adzerk's APIs can automate your native ad delivery? You can contact us here.

Self-Serve Infrastructure

If you're looking to build a self-serve platform, Adzerk has additional APIs that can power the infrastructure behind your front-end self-serve portal. (Don't worry if you're not doing self-serve - our infrastructure works for direct sold campaigns too.)

Management API

Adzerk's Management API allows for programmatic creation, updating, and pausing of ad campaigns.

Reporting API

Adzerk's Reporting API lets you store all reporting data on Adzerk's servers and pull in data automatically for your advertisers to see.

Interested in learning more about building a self-serve platform? You can contact us here.

Additional Features

Ad Pricing & Revenue Optimization

Choose to charge your ads on whatever metric you want, as well as optimize what's displayed to achieve your revenue goals.


UserDB is your own data management platform. No need to spend money on a 3rd party tool. Just connect with UserDB to store user-level info and enable user-specific targeting such as frequency capping, behavioral targeting, and more.

Forecasting API

Forecasting API is a needed tool for estimating impression volume given inputs like time frame, targeting parameters, and more.


ContentDB allows for faster metadata page targeting, as well as dynamic creative text. Store information about each page in ContentDB, and rather than having to send extra data in the request (which could slow it down), you just sent the ContentDB key, and we map it to stored information.

Data Shipping Reporting

Data Shipping is a great tool for analyzing raw impression logs and finding insights on how to optimize your native ad product - such as deciding the best location of the ad placement.

Relevancy Score

Just like Facebook and Adwords, you can incorporate relevancy scores into your bidding to optimize what ads appear to each user.

Still interested in building your own ad server? You can contact us here.

How Adzerk Works