“The OIOpublisher Ad Manager has been discontinued”. These words were the bad news that visitors of the OIOpublisher plugin website had to read since the beginning of 2020.
The story of one of the oldest plugins for integrating and selling ad space on WordPress websites ended here. Let’s look back at the history of this ad plugin.
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OIOpublisher was the longest-serving ad plugin to sell ad space directly
The OIOpublisher plugin was first released in late 2006. It provided an environment for automated direct sales of ad space. So publishers didn’t need to share their revenues with an ad network and could cut out the middle man.
The workflow was simple, at least in theory: Customers purchased ad space and paid via PayPal. Then, they uploaded image banners or created text links using a form. Finally, the administrator only had to publish the ad, and it was online.
To integrate these ads into the website, you first had to create ad zones on the website. For this purpose, you manually inserted a JS or PHP code snippet in the right place in the theme.
There was no straightforward user interface that allowed the intuitive insertion of these Ad Zones. So using OIOpublisher already required technical know-how.
The Ad Marketplace did not catch on
Websites that wanted to participate in the Ad Marketplace themselves had to use the plugin. For advertisers, the platform was, in turn, a web catalog sorted by industry.
However, the market did not catch on. OIO made the last changes in 2009.
At the beginning of 2020, the OIOpublisher plugin was suddenly discontinued. Finally, the only information was the notice mentioned above on the plugin website.
This abrupt end frustrated many website owners who monetized their websites with the OIOpublisher plugin and shared their anger in negative reviews like this one:
After buying the plugin licence we never saw any such marketplace. It was then we remembered a bad review someone had written about OIOpublisher before our purchase.
In the review, the person complained about the OIOpublisher team’s habit of not replying customer distress messages. The person advised OIOpublisher to consider closing its plugin and stop collecting money from unsuspecting clients if it has abandoned the plugin.igbodefender.com
In fact, feedback from our users suggests, that OIOpublisher support has been discontinued years before the official notice on their websites.
Advanced Ads as an alternative to the OIOpublisher plugin
The OIOpublisher plugin was the first complete solution for selling ads directly from the frontend; similar to the Selling Ads add-on from Advanced Ads.
Selling Ads helps you create a web store for ad spaces that customers can order from the frontend of your website.
You can choose to sell this ad space for a particular duration or a fixed number of clicks or impressions.
Your customers can pay via PayPal, Stripe, or other payment providers available for WooCommerce.
After purchasing the ad space, customers can upload banners or ad codes. Advanced Ads automatically integrates them into your ad setup.
Implementing OIOpublisher ads with Advanced Ads
Implementing ads works much more intuitively in Advanced Ads than in OIOpublisher. Moreover, ad management in Advanced Ads does not require any special technical skills.
For example, in Advanced Ads, you can automatically choose placements to insert ads into your entire website. In contrast to OIOpublisher, it’s not necessary to manually insert any code snippets into your theme fields for this.
When migrating an ad setup from OIOpublisher to Advanced Ads, we, therefore, recommend recreating the existing ads in Advanced Ads.
Disabling OIOpublisher, as a result, will reduce the number of active plugins and improve your website’s performance. You also mitigate a potential security risk because OIOpublisher does no longer receive security updates since 2020.
Embedding existing ad zones from OIOpublisher
As mentioned, keeping the OIOpublisher plugin activated but letting Advanced Ads embed the existing Ad Zones is technically possible but not necessarily recommended. It can be helpful if you need to keep existing Ad Purchases and their subscriptions running.
To manage the OIO Ad Zones this way, follow these steps:
- Create a new ad in Advanced Ads, select the Plain Text and Code ad type.
- Copy the JS code from your OIOpublisher Ad Zone into the Ad Parameters field in Advanced Ads.
- Save the ad and select an existing placement or create a new one
Advanced Ads will embed the Ad Zone on the selected placement now.
You can extend this ad setup even further. To do this, you create ads for additional ad zones in Advanced Ads and prepare the appropriate placements.
Since you should uninstall the deprecated OIOpublisher plugin as soon as possible for security reasons anyway, I advise checking whether this integration is useful at all. Often it is more sustainable to recreate existing ads new in Advanced Ads. Thanks to the Duplicate Ads feature, this only costs a little time in most setups.