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Advertisement on Mail.Ru, the largest Internet company in Russia

While everybody knows about “Russian Google” Yandex, today I want to talk about another big player in Russian online advertisement market – Mail.ru.

Mail.Ru Group Limited is one of the biggest Internet company (more than 1800 employees) in the Russian speaking part of the World Wide Web and seventh largest Internet business in the world. Company reports to have more than 11.6 million visitors per day and their sites reach approximately 80% of Russian Internet users.  In the end of 2010 Mail.Ru went public and currently is one of few Russian Internet companies listed on London Stock Exchange and since then their stock grew from $27.70 to current $33 (check MAIL.LI)

Mail.Ru Group includes the most popular free email service and two biggest instant messaging services: Mail.Ru Agent (more than 80 million of email accounts) and ICQ. Company also operates two leading social networks MyWorld @Mail.Ru and Odnoklassniki.ru (similar to Classmates.com )  plus has around 33% of shares of VKontakte, Russian analogue of Facebook. It also operates HeadHunter, a leading online recruitment service in Russia.

Mai.Ru is also developing several popular e-commerce projects that includes electronic payment system  Money@Mail.Ru , Travel@Mail.Ru , Goods@Mail.Ru and leading developer of online games for social networks.

It is worth to mention another company’s project – Russian Code Cup, the largest annual programming  completion in Russia that help to identify and provide career support for talented Russian programmers and increase awareness about innovative level of Russian IT and Internet  industry.  All competitors need to accomplish unique programming tasks and those who score the highest marks receive large cash prizes up to $10,000 for the first place. This support for new local promising programming talents gives additional push to the growth of Internet industry in Russia.

Placing advertisement on Mail.Ru

If you want to use Mail.Ru advertisement services please keep in mind that you will be dealing mostly with banner advertisement. These banners can be created by Mail.ru design team or made in-house, but they must to comply with specific requirements.

Here are the major technical requirements for banner ads:

  • All banners must be in GIF, JPEG or SWF formats (Flash version 8.0) formats.
  • The size of the banner image must be less than 35Kb.
  • There are special requirements  for expandable Flash banners. The total size of these banners must be less than 250Kb.
  • All banners should not contain elements that remind interface, irritate vision with flashing images and texts, or contain pornographic images.
  • While advertisement of alcohol and tobacco products is permitted, there are special requirements on these ads that need to be verified with Mail.Ru’s  legal department.

Mail.Ru provides special discounts (up to 35%) for placing large volumes of advertisement.

There are special seasonal coefficients applied to the basic price list depending on the month of the year. The lowest is 0.8 for January, 0.9 for February and July-August, 1.0  for March-June, 1.3 for September- October, and the highest is  1.5 for November-December.

Typical costs for placing banner ads on Mail.Ru:

  • 300×300 for ad placement on the main page with CPM $2.50 (will be increased to $5.00 in June 2011)
  • 240×400 for ad placement on the email service internal pages  with CPM $2.00 (will be increased by 20% in June 2011)
  • 200×300 for ad placement on the My World@Mail.ru pages with CPM $1.50

Typical costs for placing banner ads on Odnoklassniki.ru  social network (will be increased by 30-40% in June 2011):

  • 200×300 for ad placement on the main page with CPM $1.50
  • 728×90 for ad placement on the email service internal pages  with CPM $1.50
  • 240×400 for ad placement on the My World@Mail.ru pages with CPM $1.50

In March 2011 company launched the program of video advertisement for their clients. Advertisers can place ads in In-Page format on all pages of Mail.Ru portal plus in the social network Odnoklassniki.

Here are the major requirements for video ads:

  • The size of the banner image must be less than 35 Kb.
  • Video clips must be in FLV format with live streaming size less than 1 Mb
  • Video banner must contain Start, Stop and Mute buttons.

You can also place text and image ads on mobile version of Mail.Ru (m.mail.ru). The main technical requirements include:

  • Text ad must contain no more than 32 characters.
  • Banner image format – GIF only.
  • Banner ad size – 220×50, less than 5 Kb
  • Banners may be animated, but they are not supported in Opera Mini, most popular mobile browser in Russia.
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3 Responses to Advertisement on Mail.Ru, the largest Internet company in Russia

  1. Peter says:

    In fact, a company that pumps money and does not provide users with the desired functionality.

    Just holey company.

  2. Dmitriy Minenko says:

    Thanks, Preston! Russian market is very unique, interesting and dynamic, I experienced it for myself while attending RIF+KIB in April. I gathered a lot of information and will publish more articles about online marketing in Russia.

  3. Preston Carey says:


    Thanks for the great article on Mail.ru. Good to see more and more interest in the Russian online market these days. A very exciting place to be playing.

    We have some market share and reach numbers for Mail, Yandex and some of the other players in the market in an overview deck – http://www.slideshare.net/YandexBusDev/russian-internet-market-and-yandex-company-overview/10 – thought folks might find it interesting to see how the local players dominate the market.

    Preston Carey
    Director, Business Development

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