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What Is SKAdNetwork?

SKAdNetwork | Definition

SKAdNetwork is Apple’s privacy-centric attribution framework for iOS apps, providing conversion data to advertisers for measuring the success of ad campaigns without revealing user-level information. This enables marketers to measure the effectiveness of advertising campaigns on iOS devices while maintaining user privacy.

  • Function: SKAdNetwork provides a way for ad networks to attribute app installations and post-install activities without revealing user-level data, utilizing a system of cryptographic signatures and randomized data to ensure user anonymity.
  • Components: The framework involves three key elements: ad networks, source apps or websites, and the advertised app. Ad networks must register with Apple and are responsible for creating the signed ads that are displayed in source apps or websites. They receive the install-validation postbacks from Apple—notifications that an app was installed as a result of an ad campaign. Source apps are the platforms where ads are displayed and must include ad network IDs in their Info.plist file, a property list file that contains essential configuration information for the app. Advertised apps are the apps promoted via the ads and are responsible for calling SKAdNetwork APIs to report user engagements.
  • Conversion values: SKAdNetwork allows advertisers to receive limited post-install data through conversion values, offering insights into user behavior and campaign performance.
  • Privacy compliance: By using SKAdNetwork, advertisers comply with Apple’s privacy policies, including the AppTrackingTransparency (ATT) framework, which requires user consent for tracking outside of SKAdNetwork.
  • Importance: SKAdNetwork is essential for advertisers running paid media campaigns on iOS, as it is the only Apple-approved method for attribution that accounts for both users who consent to tracking and those who opt out. However, its use is not required when using Apple Search Ads to promote your app

Related Terms

Apple Search Ads (ASA)