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The Frequency Capping, in Spanish frequency limiting, is a method used in Display Marketing to control how often a display ad is shown. By establishing how often an ad appears, you can make more subtle and efficient use of business promotion.

General information

Currently, users are very sensitive to the position of the ads since sometimes the exaggerated use of the ads in the content deteriorates the usability and user experience. For this reason, plan when the ad appears taking into account the behavior of the user it is very useful to avoid the so-called Banner Blindness (banner blindness). The frequency of the banner is controlled with this method and the maximum frequency that should appear for each user is defined.


Each visitor to a web portal is marked with a cookie. Due to discussions related to user privacy, other methods are now used to mark visitors, even though cookies are still being used.

For example, some devices use the log file to establish and store data by means of AdServer. AdServer is able to differentiate each user with the help of these markers and, in this way, offers the appropriate advertising material based on the behavior that each user shows.

An example

An advertiser can create and organize his advertising campaign with the method of frequency capping. If the set value is 5, the ad will not show more than 5 times for each user during a specified time interval. This time interval is determined individually and long periods such as one day or even more can be defined by means of cookies.



We can usually identify 3 different methods to perform frequency limiting. This limit depends on each advertiser, the user and the advertising channel used:

1. User

In this method the total number of contacts of the user with the advertising material is considered. Once the limit has been reached, the ad server will stop showing the ad to that user.

The disadvantage of this method is that this technique loses its efficiency as soon as the user visits several portals run by different advertisers.

2. Advertisers

If you are targeting advertisers, the number of ads that appear per advertiser will depend on the network. In this way a lower individual limitation can be determined since there are more advertising material such as banners available to the user. At the same time, affiliate programs are also taken into account. However, it is difficult to find the exact measurements to establish this maximum frequency.

3. Channels and Users

To optimally determine this frequency limit, the ads are organized based on the daily behavior of a user. This information can be obtained from Adsense by reviewing user behavior on different channels.


This method offers advertisers the opportunity to make the most of and plan their advertising campaigns as it is possible to estimate CPM costs quite efficiently in this way. By limiting the ad interval, you can minimize the risk that users will lose sensitivity and not even notice the ad. Studies show that users are more receptive when ads appear less usually and with more varied messages.


The frequency capping it should be used in moderation. Too low a frequency can go unnoticed. If it is too high it can be invasive and worsen the user experience.

Web links

  • cookies Spanish Agency on Data Protection