On the web, interstitials are web pages displayed before or after an expected content page, often to display advertisements or confirm the user's age (prior to showing age-restricted material). Most interstitial advertisements are delivered by an ad server.
Some people take issue with the use of such pages to present online advertising before allowing users to see the content they were trying to access.
Meaning of interstitial
In this context, interstitial is used in the sense of “in between”. The interstitial web page sits between a referenced page and the page which references it—hence it is in between two pages. This is distinct from a page which simply links directly to another, in that the interstitial page serves only to provide extra information to a user during the act of navigating from one page to the next.
In digital marketing, the term “interstitial” is often used in the sense of “interstitial advertising”, rather than “interstitial webpage”. In some cases, this may lead to confusion because interstitial ads are not always served on interstitial webpages. According to a standard advanced by the IAB, an interstitial (also known as a between-the-page ad) can either be displayed on a separate webpage, or appear briefly as an overlay on the target page. Moreover, mobile advertising guidelines created by the Mobile Marketing Association (MMA) include in-app interstitial ads, that are integrated into applications, rather than web pages.
In 2015, a Google representative stated that he would like to make interstitials a negative ranking factor in Google Search.
Many interstitial pages are circumvented by NoScript and AdBlock.
A variation on the pop-up window, the pop-under advertisement, opens a new browser window under the active window. Pop-unders do not interrupt the user immediately, but appear when the user closes the covering window, making it more difficult to determine which website created them.
This page was last updated January 16th, 2018 by kim
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