Robert Beerworth Team : Web Strategy Tags : Online Trends

What is Outbrain?

Robert Beerworth Team : Web Strategy Tags : Online Trends

You may – may – have noticed that increasing, when you click on a link on a news website – such as The Sydney Morning Herald – you are not immediately sent to the article you clicked.

You are instead sent briefly to a URL hosted by a website hosted by

Essentially, Outbrain is a technology that allows publishers – or a website – to retarget users based on their previous browsing activity. 

Essentially, to recommend content and links (links on the same website on which you are on) based on what you have previously looked at.

In turn, Outbrain delivers more targeted or relevant content because it has a growing history on you as a user and what you are looking at.

As an outsourced solution, a website publisher doesn’t need to worry about the intricacies of what or why this happening… just that it is and that their users are being served articles more attuned to what they are likely to read and be interested in.

How well it works I don’t know, though it is certainly growing.

I’ve noticed it on Fairfax websites and indeed, the catalyst for this blog was that I noticed that The Onion (a satirical website was using it); according to Outbrain, many, many publishers are using it.

No doubt based on my experience.

Retargeting users is a clever thing to do; personalising content equally so.

More pages served to users, more time on site.

I initially doubted how Outbrain could serve the zillions of pages being asked of it – if it goes down, so do all the news sites relying on it in theory – though it seems to pretty solid based on the many times I have seen its URL redirecting me.

Like many technologies, no doubt retargeting is a specialised one worth sending out.

For purposes of this blog – a blog in which I have overlooked many possible topics such as how to use retargeting – at least you understand the concept of Outbrain and why you are seeing it in your browser, albeit for a brief second between pages.