A “web banner” or “banner ad” can be an effective way of advertising on the internet. This type of advertising basically involves embedding an advert into a web page. The idea is to attract traffic to the website of the advertiser who has paid to place their banner ad on another website. Banner ads are made up of an image that is usually a JPEG, GIF or PNG file created in photoshop or similar software. It can also be a multimedia object using Java or Flash, this will animate your advert or enable you to use sound or video effects to give more impact to your advertising campaign.
Most banners tend to be tall & narrow or wide & short in shape,these formats are set to an industry standard size to fit at the top or bottom of the web page or at the side, smaller & lower cost square shaped banners are also used & usually placed at the side of the page or can be embedded in the content of the page. The advertising cost of placing a banner will be influenced by the size & position of your ad.
The most visible position & therefore more expensive banner will be one that is placed above the fold or top part of the webpage, the main reason for trying to get above the fold is because many visitors to websites will only visit the site briefly without scrolling down the page, this is important if you want to get the maximum visibility & attract more views of your banner.
The next important factor to consider is how to choose the type of website you will placing your ad on. Whatever your product or service you are advertising, it will of course be important to find a site that has the right target audience for what you are selling or promoting. The amount of traffic to the site will also reflect the price you pay to advertise there, a site with high traffic will of course be more expensive than one that is only getting a few thousand visitors a month. This is where you will have to look at your advertising budget & decide how much you are prepared to pay.
Terms used in Banner advertising
1. Impression: Each time your banner ad loads on a website, this is considered an “impression.”
2. Click: Each time someone clicks on your actual banner, this is counted as a “click.”
3. Conversions: When someone fills out the form on your website, this is considered a “conversion” or “Lead”.
4. CPM – Cost Per Thousand: This is a method of measuring how much you will pay for a banner ad.
5. CPA – Cost Per Action: This is a method of measuring how much you will pay for a banner ad, based on the actions taking. An action can be considered a click, or it can be considered a conversion. If a website offers banner advertising on a “CPA basis” this means you only pay when someone actually clicks on your ad.
6. CTR – Click Through Rate: This is the ratio of impressions to clicks. So if there are 1000 impressions (or page views) on a website, and 10 people click on the banner ad, that would be a CTR of 1%
It can be worthwhile spending some time researching suitable sites for your advertising campaign, a good place to start is by doing a Google search on keywords that are relevant to your product or service, look for the places your target audience might visit. When you have found a suitable site then see if they accept banner ads, try to avoid sites that have too many ads on, chances are unless you are going for a top position on the page then your ad might not be that visible if the page is overcrowded with other adverts.