Though every site and app is different, they all generally share a similar site taxonomy. Given that, the publishers that have the most sophisticated, long-lasting, and highest-earning native ad strategies follow these best practices when designing their homepage units:
1. In-feed ads, no lower on the page such that the visibility rate of the first ad is at least 50%.
2. One ad placement every 7-10 stories.
3. If there are multiple homepage sections, with either different content types (videos versus articles) or different design styles (big horizontal stories vs multi-column blocks of stories), try to install at least one native placement per section.
DJBooth's mobile integration is a perfect example of a homepage unit done right. Notice that the unit matches all the site's atomic units, but still clearly conveys its advertorial nature with both a "Sponsored" tag, as well as the "Promoted by" slug:
4. Always have a homepage placement. Even if your homepage has limited traffic, you can use your homepage placement to establish with marketers the concept of “fitting in” to your site. Further, your homepage placement will serve as the best demo when selling your native inventory to advertisers and brands.
Check out Scout.com's innovative take on native. Not only is their homepage unit viewable and designed to match the look and feel of their site, but it also matches the rollover functionality of the rest of their articles: