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YouTube Bumper Ads: What They Are & How to Use Them

Google offers various different types of YouTube ads to e-commerce marketers.

One of the most innovative ad formats available is the Bumper ad – a short and sweet video placement that can drive incredibly cost-efficient results. 

However, the Bumper ad is a unique format with a few nuances to understand. 

These placements don’t provide advertisers with endless space for creativity, so creative assets need to be carefully crafted and optimised for success. 

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Marketers will also need to fuel their Bumper ads with accurate targeting strategies to deliver strong results and consistently increase revenue. 

So what are the secrets behind running an incredibly successful Bumper ads campaign?

It’s your lucky day, because we’re about to reveal them.

(But you knew that already, right?)

Let’s run through the fundamentals of YouTube Bumper ads, and outline how you can squeeze optimal results from this unique format. 

As a specialist Youtube ads agency we can help you with your campaigns just get in touch for a free consultation.

What are YouTube Bumper ads?

YouTube Bumper ads are 6 second non skippable ads designed to maximise reach and deliver short, memorable messages. 

Bumper ads appear before YouTube videos, and often act as a quick nudge or reminder message from online advertisers.

(Source: Shopify)

Since the format is short, it’s not ideal for in-depth product messaging or complex brand stories. Instead, advertisers often use Bumpers to encourage direct actions, or to reiterate messages delivered through other YouTube ad formats (i.e. TrueView). 

YouTube Bumper ads are also purchased on a Cost Per Mille (CPM) model.

This means that advertisers are charged for every 1,000 impressions delivered, regardless of whether users interact or engage with their video ad. As a result, the creative assets being used in a Bumper campaign need to be as efficient as possible. 

An impression will cost the same amount regardless of whether users click on the ad, so advertisers need to ensure that their Bumper videos are clear, concise and compelling. 

With the right creative assets and targeting tactics, advertisers can deliver exceptional results from a Bumper campaign. 

What are the ad specs for a YouTube Bumper ad? 

YouTube Bumper ads might require some expert strategies to run effectively, but luckily they’re fairly simple to create.

The specs for a YouTube Bumper ad are below:

Video length: 6 seconds available for one ad.

Device availability: Accessible on both mobile and desktop devices.

Ad delivery: Bumper ads appear before YouTube video content. Any YouTube supported video file type is acceptable for Bumper ads. 

While Bumper ads may be simple to build, they require the right creative assets to drive optimal returns. 

Since you have limited time to deliver your message, you’ll need to make the most of every second when producing and editing your video ads. 

What are the advantages of YouTube Bumper ads? 

So what makes YouTube Bumper ads so useful for ecommerce advertisers?

1. They’re less disruptive for viewers

The world of digital marketing is incredibly competitive, and brands are in a constant battle to capture audience attention and secure advertising space. 

However, marketers need to strike a careful balance. 

Brands need to reach a sizable audience with enough frequency to drive action, but avoid becoming irritating or too persistent with their messaging. 

YouTube Bumper ads offer an excellent solution to this issue. Although these ads are non skippable, they’re also very short and easily digestible. 

Even the most impatient and cynical viewers can pay attention to 6 seconds of advertising, so marketers don’t need to be concerned with oversaturating their audience. 

Since users are unlikely to stop paying attention to a speedy Bumper ad, advertisers just need to make the most of the placement with impactful messaging. 

2. They’re proven to drive results 

YouTube Bumper ads are also proven to be highly effective for online advertisers.

Google campaign research has demonstrated the effectiveness of Bumper ads in influencing a range of brand metrics. 

After analysing 489 global Bumper campaigns, Google found that 61% drove a significant uplift in brand awareness, with an average lift of 9% across all campaigns.

Google also conducted further research into 605 Bumper campaign studies, and found that 90% achieved a positive uplift in ad recall, with an average increase of 38% across all campaigns. 

Advertisers can use these versatile placements to deliver against a number of objectives.

3. They’re cost-efficient 

Advertisers can also run extremely cost-efficient campaigns by utilising YouTube Bumper ads.

Since these ads are charged on a CPM basis, brands will only pay a set cost for every 1,000 impressions delivered.

This pricing model focuses on reach and scale, charging for the total number of impressions delivered rather than clicks or engagements. 

However, it’s also important to note that building sufficient reach is only half of the equation. 

Although advertisers can easily reach a large number of users, they’ll still need to target the right audiences and deliver engaging creative messages to succeed. 

What are the disadvantages of YouTube Bumper ads? 

Although digital advertisers can deliver positive results through YouTube Bumper ads, no video ad format is perfect.

It’s important to understand some of the disadvantages associated with Bumper ads before launching a new campaign.

1. Creative space is limited

Although the ‘short and sweet’ nature of Bumper ads can be beneficial for capturing user attention, it also restricts advertisers creatively.

6 seconds isn’t a long time to deliver a brand message, and the format may not necessarily suit every campaign. 

If you’re launching a new business or product, for example, then you may need more time to explain your proposition and offering. If you try to cram too much information into a Bumper ad, it will become messy and a little overwhelming. 

Think about it this way – if users can’t instantly recognise your brand or understand your message in the space of 6 seconds, then you probably need more creative space.

2. You’ll pay for every impression 

The CPM model does have its advantages when it comes to YouTube advertising.

Because this pricing system focuses exclusively on the number of impressions delivered, it’s great for building reach and scale efficiently. It’s all about quantity. 

However, this approach isn’t flawless. 

Because you’re paying for a set number of impressions, there’s no guarantee that users are enjoying (or more importantly, engaging with) your creative assets. 

Your Bumper ads will be served regardless of user interactions, and you’ll pay for every impression. This means that you need total confidence in the effectiveness of your assets.

The CPM model also means that your audience targeting needs to be top-notch. 

If you’re delivering impressions to irrelevant or uninterested users, you’ll still be paying for the privilege, which certainly won’t help your cost-efficiency!

How much does it cost to run YouTube Bumper ads? 

There are plenty of factors that can (and will) influence the cost of your YouTube campaigns. 

(In fact, there are so many factors that we wrote a highly informative post to explore them in more detail.)

This means that it’s difficult to estimate exactly how much a YouTube Bumper ads campaign will cost – but we can take a look at some average prices as a rough guide.

Across all industries, most advertisers will pay between £0.80 and £3.25 per thousand impressions – but this will fluctuate significantly between different businesses. 

How can I set up and run YouTube Bumper ads? 

Keen to get going with your own Bumper ads? 

Let’s take a look at the steps required to set up your own campaign: 

1. Log in to your Google Ads account, navigate to the Campaigns tab, and click the blue ‘+’ button.

2. Click ‘New Campaigns’ and select your desired objective and the ‘Video’ campaign type.

3. Select ‘Bumper’ as your campaign subtype.

4. Enter your full campaign details (budget, live dates, target audience, etc) and finalise your Ad Group. Be sure to double check all of this information before proceeding! 

5. Upload your creative assets to your YouTube channel and hit ‘Create Campaign’.

Congratulations – you’re ready to launch a brand new YouTube Bumper ads campaign. 

Best practices for effective YouTube Bumper ads 

YouTube Bumper ads are a fairly unique format in the world of digital advertising, and every campaign is different.

However, by following proven best practices when running your Bumper ads, you can maximise your chances of success and increase those all-important sales volumes. 

Focus on key product visuals

When it comes to producing effective Bumper ads, every second counts.

(And there’s only 6 of them, so pay close attention!)

Use your Bumper ads to focus exclusively on the key visuals that showcase your product benefits. 

Remember, users need to instantly understand your creative message.

You don’t have the luxury of 20 seconds or 30 seconds to explain your offering (as you might with other formats) so you’ll need to cut to the chase. 

Here’s a great example from Renault – the ad instantly focuses on the key product benefit, and the message is immediately clear.

Keep your message simple

It’s critical to concentrate on a single, crystal clear message when you’re running YouTube Bumper ads.

Think carefully about what your core message will be when creating your video asset.

Are you focusing on an individual product benefit? Trying to display a specific call to action? Driving traffic to a landing page? 

You’ll only have 6 seconds to land this key message, so don’t try to communicate complicated information. Simplicity is best. 

Create bespoke assets 

Many advertisers fall into the trap of cutting down long-form skippable ads to run as Bumper ads. Although this can work in certain instances, most long-form videos aren’t designed to work effectively as short-form ads. 

If you attempt to cut down a 30 second or 60 second video into 6 seconds, it can often feel clunky and disjointed for the viewer. 

Bumper ads are a unique video format that require a specific creative approach. 

If possible, try to produce bespoke assets that are designed to work properly as 6 second YouTube ads.

Strategies for successful YouTube Bumper ads 

Once you’ve created effective Bumper assets, it’s time to think about maximising the returns you’ll generate from your ad campaign.

A solid YouTube advertising strategy will help you to optimise your ads, improve your performance and ultimately increase your revenue. 

The first thing to consider is how Bumper ads will integrate with the rest of your video marketing strategy. 

If you’re running longer-form TrueView ads on the YouTube platform, then Bumpers can become an incredibly useful supporting act. 

While your long-form skippable video ads deliver in-depth product messaging and brand storytelling, your Bumper ads can include quick reminders and CTAs that maintain brand awareness and reach. 

Retargeting users exposed to your TrueView assets and Display ads with Bumper ads is also a tried and tested strategy that can generate exceptional results. 

As always, it’s also important to stay close to your campaign reports in order to make effective optimisations. Monitor the performance of your Bumper ads, and adjust budgets and targeting to focus on the most profitable tactics.

Getting help with your YouTube ad campaigns 

You’re now equipped with all the knowledge you need to run top-notch YouTube Bumper ads.

Exciting stuff, eh? 

But if you need some additional guidance on running effective YouTube Bumper ads, fear not – we’ve compiled a few handy resources below that you can save for reference.

And there we are – a comprehensive guide to YouTube Bumper ads.

Bumper ads are a unique format due to their short second-length. To make the most of them, you’ll need to take time to produce the right assets and utilise smart targeting strategies.

However, if you can master these non skippable video ads, then you’ll be able to rapidly improve YouTube campaign performance.


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