A web banner is an online image (.jpg, .png, .gif) or a multimedia object (usually created using Flash) that advertises something on a web page.
If someone clicks on the image ad, he gets redirected to the advertiser’s website.
You should try to design a banner which is as attractive and descriptive as possible — so that people are willing click it to learn more about your offer.
The more clicks your banner is able to generate (“click-through rate“), the more visitors you will receive to your website. This makes you come closer to your ultimate goal which is obviously to generate a conversion (e.g. an email subscription, an account signup or a sale).
The banner ads can be static or animated depending on the technology used to make them. I personally recommend using animated GIF banners with a strong call-to-action as it helps to catch people attention.
Here is an example of a Custom Design Banner to stand out from the crowd:
When it’s done properly, this advertising technique can bring amazing results to your business. You can find numerous testimonials around the web about it. For example, Andy managed to build a 2000+ affiliate network through banner advertising.
Why advertising online is essential to your business?
There is no secret. To build a profitable biz, you need customer’s eyes on it.
The best service or product worth nothing without visibility.
And when it comes to online business growth, banner advertising can be the winner.
5 reasons why online banner advertising is awesome:
- Increase brand recognition.
The Internet never sleeps. Banner advertising is your luck to leverage that massive audience. By creating eye-catching campaigns, you can get your brand noticed and shared.
- Backed up with useful data.
With such online ads, you can use a banner ad tracking service to collect instant information. For example, you can know what ads are generating clicks, who is doing the clicking and where they saw the ad.
- Focus on advertising ROI.
No need to run crazy surveys or wait months to get a decent feedback. With banner ads, you can have a clear idea about how your ad campaign performed within days. This allows you to promptly remove campaigns that are not working and focus on those that are converting.
Applying changes is an easy task to perform. If you ever find a typo, you don’t have to worry as this can be solved with a few keystrokes. The same applies if you figure out that an ad campaign isn’t appealing to your customers. You can just replace it with a new one.
You can start with a small budget. A few dollars is all you need.
And you will be able to optimize or grow your audience as you see the benefits.
Three ways to defeat the banner blindness:
Banner advertising is amongst the most effective strategies to convey a message and attract leads.
Affiliate opportunities usually know this. And to ease their business growth, they add to their affiliate tool area a few official banners.
A copy paste is all you need to start promoting the business. It’s super easy… and that’s exactly the issue!
Nowadays, people get bombarded by online advertising. The advertising spaces are full of those default banner designs.
Here are your 3 weapons to fight this and outperform the other affiliates…
- 1- Custom Banner Design:
If you wish to avoid the banner blindness, you have no other choice than creating your own design. Building a unique design is the pillar point of a great ad.
- 2- Strong Call To Action:
Ensure you tell the viewers what to do next. Although it may appear evident to many that a banner is there to get clicked, many people won’t do it unless you ask them to.
- 3- Banner Ad Rotation:
If you are always using the same design, your results will, in the long run, start to drop. Your prospects skip your banner since they have seen it so often.
When your conversion ratio starts to decrease, rotate or change your banner. Try a different approach, another design variation or wording.
Banner Ads: How to create a banner?
Nowadays, there are a lot of online banner creator that allows you to make a banner ad.
This said, many struggles to design a banner ad that gets the expected results. A successful campaign creates a bridge between your advertising message and your customer’s desires.
You need to consider your buyer persona. But also their attitudes, feelings, beliefs, and opinion about your offer.
If you skip those, your audience may find your ads irrelevant, disruptive, or uninteresting. And your click through rate is likely to suffer.
People usually prefer to outsource their banner’s design to an experienced web banner designer. This avoids useless headaches.
How to advertise your banner?
Once your banner creative is ready, you will need to upload it to an image hosting provider.
There are some free solutions such as Imgur or Imageshack (EDIT: Imageshack is now a paid subscription service at $37.99/year). Converting your banner file into a ready-to-promote URL is as easy as drag and drop the file to their uploaders.
If you are a seasoned marketer, consider to host it straight to your web hosting or through your Dropbox. This will prevent you from risking troubles due to bandwidth limitations.
Where to advertise your banner?
I got a bad news for you. Designing an attractive banner ad is only the first step in creating a successful ad campaign. And it’s definitely not enough.
You will also need to be careful about the publisher you pick.
Generally, banner ads are placed on high traffic websites that offer interesting or useful content. But, besides the traffic, there are other important aspects to be taken into consideration when choosing a website to advertise on.
One of these aspects is the website’s target, which has to more or less match with the banner’s intended audience.
3 effective sources to advertise your banner ad:
- 1- Authority website.
This is stressful and time-consuming, but it can work great. The idea is to reach out established website owners in your field. You are going to ask them if they offer an advertising program and then negotiate the pricing and terms.
Note: SimilarWeb is a great tool to learn more about the audience of a specific website. From their website or the browser addon, you will be able to check all details about the traffic sources, the top referring sites, and the visitor interests. And it’s 100% free.
- 2- Banner Advertising Network.
Most people choose an advertising network to help them distribute their ads. It’s easier and allows you to reach a broad audience. If you are seeking for a high ratio of unique impressions, this is the way to go.
Google AdWords is the largest and most popular network. But it’s quite expensive, especially for the “money making” niche.
If it’s the niche you are active on, you can find several cheap advertising sites as an alternative. For example, you could promote your banner ads through networks such as AdHitz or check my favorite ptc for advertising.
- 3- Start your own affiliate program.
If your goal is to promote your own services or products, you could create your own affiliate program and make a bunch of banners available to your affiliates. For example, a plugin like AffiliateWP is compatible with several e-commerce platforms.
The people loving your services and products are going to do the job for you.
They drive traffic straight to your website and you only pay on conversion (no risk involved).
How much does it cost to advertise your banner?
The ad cost will depend on many factors. For example, the website you are advertising on, their ad placements, and the volume.
There are several pricing structures:
1- Fixed Rate for a period.
Cons: you don’t know what you are paying for beforehand.
2- Cost Per Mille (CPM). It represents what you will pay for 1000 impressions of your banner on a given site.
Cons: you pay also for people who don’t click your banner.
3- Cost Per Click (CPC). This is what you pay each time someone decides to click your banner.
Cons: it’s quite expensive when it comes to new or low competitive offers.
When it comes to the Paid To Click industry, the banner ad cost is low. The pricing will usually range between $10 and $50 for 1 million banner impressions.
Some banner advertising networks may even offer lower prices by leveraging bulk volume discounts.
How do you measure your banner’s success?
Follow this golden rule: do not approach your design by guessing. And keep in mind that there is no magic formula to create the perfect ad that will generate results every time.
You need to use insights from existing data to create a relevant persona. Then, you will be able to design a comprehensive ad campaign that they will find relevant.
With traditional methods, this can be a challenge. But when it comes to online advertising, the effectiveness can be easily measured.
Your banner performance is usually defined with the Click-Through Rate (“CTR”). This represents the number of clicks a banner gets per 100 impressions.
Therefore, the higher the CTR is, the more effective the advertisement is. It’s that simple.
If you are promoting your own websites or landing pages, you can go even further by placing a conversion pixel on your “thank you” pages. Following your advertising ROI is easy with an Ad Tracker.
For example, a service such as trck.me allows you to gather this information (and much more).
And you, what’s your favorite method to advertise online? Do you have any tips, tricks or feedbacks to share concerning that topic? I would love to hear those, leave a comment below! :)