How do AdBlockers Know What To Block? EasyList and EasyPrivacy

There are two main lists that ad blocking tools reference when deciding what domains to block.

  • EasyList is a list of domains that are used by websites to insert advertisements or other content. This includes most ad networks. LiftIgniter's domains are not on this list, and should not be, as we do not serve ads.
  • EasyPrivacy is a list of domains used for third-party analytics or measurement, even if not involved in ad serving. LiftIgniter's domains ( and subdomains) are listed here, as are those of major analytics services such as Google Analytics and Chartbeat.

Most ad blockers (including AdBlock and AdBlock Plus) default to using EasyList as their block list, although privacy-conscious users can choose to use EasyPrivacy instead.

However, uBlock is an ad-blocking tool that uses EasyPrivacy by default, so users using uBlock do not send data to LiftIgniter or receive LiftIgniter recommendations, unless they have switched to EasyList or otherwise unblocked LiftIgniter. Most of these users won't be visible to Google Analytics or third-party analytics tools, so the only way you'll know about them will be through direct logging of user activity you do on your website.

Effects of AdBlockers on Your Traffic and LiftIgniter Visibility

The effect on your traffic will depend on your geographic location and user's profiles. In the United States, adblockers are used by 26% of desktop and 15% of mobile users, and about 20% of adblock users have uBlock. Therefore, the fraction of traffic that is invisible to LiftIgniter (and cannot benefit from LiftIgniter recommendations) due to uBlock specifically is about 3%. Note that the ratio could be higher or lower depending on the audience segment you are catering to.

Since these users are invisible to Google Analytics as well, they probably won't show up in your other calculations. So you won't need to subtract 3% from your expected traffic numbers if you're using Google Analytics for baseline calculations.

Effect on Incremental Revenue Calculations

Ad blockers should not affect the calculation of proportional improvements you calculate based off of LiftIgniter. For instance, if LiftIgniter increases your pageviews by 10%, then it should increase your non-ad-blocker pageviews by 10% as well.

When calculating actual revenue, you will need to discount the incremental pageviews added by LiftIgniter to account for non-monetizable pages. If, for instance, 15% of your users use ad blockers, and LiftIgniter adds 10 million pageviews to your site a month, you effectively get 8.5 million extra monetizable pageviews a month. This is the same as the discounting you need to do in general for non-LiftIgniter-powered pageviews as well. Note that if you have already incorporated ad blocking when calculating your blended CPM, then you do not need to make the adjustment again here.

Using LiftIgniter in Place of Ads

For users browsing your site with ad blocks in place, you may consider replacing the blocked areas with native content recommendations from LiftIgniter, in addition to any messaging regarding whitelisting ads or turning off ad blocking. This fills in any gaps in your site design left by missing ads, and provides quality content recommendations that may eventually turn blockers into whitelisters. You can use conditional logic to only activate and request items for these hidden "replacement" widgets if an adblocker is detected, and otherwise have them remain unused (see Implementing Multiple Widgets for more tips on including additional widgets on your pages).