Google Publisher Console is an invaluable tool for any publisher serving ads on their website through Google Ad Manager (GAM). This hidden Chrome feature gives valuable information about how Ad Manager is functioning on page and gives valuable insight into the auction and delivery for authorised users. With Google Publisher Toolbar being deprecated, the Publisher Console is now the primary tool for DFP/Ad Manager diagnostics and learning how to use it should be a priority for all publishers.
Publisher Console is built into Google’s Chrome browser. No extension is needed, you just need to enable it when you want to access the console.
This multi-part guide will show you how to access Google Publisher Console as well as how to use the Console to diagnose Ad Manager set-up and delivery problems. In part 1 we’ll focus on how to easily enable and access Publisher Console.
How to enable Google Publisher Console
Enable Publisher Console through the URL bar
Enable Publisher Console from a bookmark
- In Chrome, click the More icon and then select Bookmarks then Bookmark this page
- Click the More button so that you can edit the URL
- Enter a name (e.g., Publisher Console)
- Click Save
Now that you have the bookmark saved you can just click on it to open Google Publisher Console at any time you are viewing a page that has the GPT tag on it.
Another method, that can be useful during development, is to have a link on the page to open Publisher Console. This isn’t recommended for production, but can be a good way to enable debugging easily across multiple devices whilst a site is being worked on. To do this simply create a link like the following:
With this link on page you can simply click it on any device running Chrome to open the Publisher Console.
Running Publisher Console in Safari, Chrome, Opera etc
There are times when it would definitely be useful to access the functionality of Google Publisher Toolbar when using other browsers. Unfortunately, as the console is a Chrome feature there is no current way to do this.
What is Google Publisher Toolbar?
It’s worth quickly mentioning the Google Publisher Toolbar at this point. The Google Publisher Toolbar was a Chrome extension released by Google that included some overlapping functionality with Publisher Console. Since version 5.1.0, released March 2019, support of Google Ad Manager (then DFP) and Ad Exchange was removed. Publisher toolbar is essentially now an AdSense only tool and of little used to publishers using Google Ad Manager.
Any Chrome user can use the Publisher Console on any page that is running Google Ad Manager. You do not need to be granted permission or be logged into a Google Ad Manager account. However, additional functionality does become available if you are logged into the account that is being used to serve ads on the page.
Anyone can use the Console to:
- See the ad overlays
- View Ad Slot information
- Open any creative in a new window
- View the page request
- Reload the page without ads, or with ads but without rendering them
- View DFP alerts and errors
- Run lighthouse publisher audits
Authorised users can additionally:
- Directly access any ad unit in Ad Manager
- View delivery diagnostics
- Open the URL in GAM delivery tools
How to use Google Publisher Console
In the second part of this guide we’ll start looking at how publishers can use the Publisher Console to diagnose various issue. If you would like to be notified when the subsequent parts go live please sign up for our monthly newsletter.
To read part two of our guide on how to use the Google Publisher Console, please click here. To learn how to test new implementations, fix errors and block creatives using the Google Publisher Console, please click here.