What is Banner Advertising?
Banner advertising are the small rectangular advertisements appear on all sorts of Web pages and vary considerably in appearance and subject matter, but they all share a basic function: “if you click on them, your Internet browser will take you to the advertiser’s Web site.”
A bit of HTML code instructs a Web server to bring up a particular Web page when a user clicks on a certain piece of text. Banner ads are essentially the same thing, except that instead of text, the link is displayed as a box containing graphics (usually with textual elements) and sometimes animation.
Because of its graphic element, a banner ad is somewhat similar to a traditional ad you would see in a printed publication such as a newspaper or magazine, but it has the added ability to bring a potential customer directly to the advertiser’s Web site. This is something like touching a printed ad and being immediately teleported to the advertiser’s store! A banner ad also differs from a print ad in its dynamic capability. It stays in one place on a page, like a magazine ad, but it can present multiple images, include animation and change appearance in a number of other ways.
Types of Banner Ads
Like print ads, banner ads come in a variety of shapes and sizes. The Internet Advertising Bureau (IAB) specifies eight different banner sizes, according to pixel dimensions. A pixel is the smallest unit of color used to make up images on a computer or television screen. The IAB’s standard banner sizes are:
1. 480 X 60 Pixels (Full Banner)
2. 392 X 72 Pixels (Full Banner with vertical navigation Bar)
3. 234 X 60 Pixels (Half Banner)
4. 120 X 240 Pixels (Vertical Banner)
5. 125 X 125 Pixels (Square button)
6. 125 X 90 Pixels (Button 1)
7. 125 X 60 Pixels (Button 2)
8. 88 X 31 Pixels (Micro Button)
The full banner (468 x 60) is by far the most popular, but you will see all these variations all over the Web. These are not the only banner ad shapes and sizes, either, but they are a good representation of the range of common banner ads. There is no universal file-size constraint for banner ads, but most Web sites impose their own limits on memory size, usually something like 12K to 16K. This is because banner ads add to the total file size of the page they appear on; therefore increasing the time it takes for a browser to load that page.
As you’ve probably noticed while surfing the Web, actual graphic content, or creative, varies considerably among banner ads. The simplest banner ads feature only one, static GIF or JPEG image, which is linked to the advertiser’s home page. More common is the GIF-animated banner ad, which displays several different images in succession, sometimes to create the effect of animated motion. Then there are rich media banner ads — ads that use audio, video, or Java and Shockwave programming. These banner ads, which usually have larger file sizes, are often interactive beyond their simple linking function.
How to implement Banner Advertising:
The designing of a simple banner ad is not so difficult. For example to create an image for advertising the code looks like this:
Text to be displayed
In short same as a simple hyperlink creation. Also the animated GIF banner ads aren’t much more complicated. We can also use a high quality media ad. We can use professional help for designing ads for us. Now we can get a professional banner ad for $50 or you can spend upwards of $1,000.
To make our banner ad more effective, we can also use the some of following methods:
Post banner ads on pages with related Web content — the more related, the better
Advertise a particular product or service in your banner, rather than your site generally
If you do advertise a particular product or service, link the banner ad to that part of your Web site, rather than your home page
Put banner ads at the top of the page, rather than farther down
Use simple messages rather than complicated ones
Use animated ads rather than static ones
Your graphic content should pique visitor curiosity, without being too obscure
Keep banner ad size small
If the page takes too long to load, a lot of visitors will go on to another page
One can also use the following ten tips to make an ad more effective:
1. Study the best examples online. When designing a creative piece like a banner ad, start by identifying the best banner ads that you have seen.
2. Be clear in your graphics and messaging. Your main objective is to have people take a particular action after viewing your ad. A strong, clear message will help capture their interest. Clear communication requires that you understand your message, what you are selling and the benefit that you are offering potential customers.
3. Control the file size. To minimize user frustration, you need to limit the file size of your ad. As a general rule a 468 x 60 pixel banner should be 12 kilobytes or less. The easiest way to achieve this is to limit the number of colors you use and save your banner as an animated GIF file.
4. Say it in seven words or less. This is especially important for a banner campaign, where you are limited to a small visual space. Using fewer words means that you can make the font size bigger, which increases the impact of your message.
5. Use power words. These are single words that immediately communicate a benefit. “Free,” “unbelievable,” “incredible,” “affordable,” “heartwarming” — a brainstorming session will help you create a list of words that are perfect for your campaign.
6. Select images carefully. Adding visuals is like cooking with spices. Too few will lead to a bland banner, while too many will destroy the desired effect. If you want to add an eye-catching graphic, royalty free stock photography is an inexpensive option.
7. Use contrast to capture attention. Your ad will likely include these elements: background colors, a bold text message, and a photograph or drawing, and animated. To be effective you need to have contrast between these elements. Contrast can be achieved using different font sizes and bolds and colors.
8. Limit your use of fonts. If you do use two or more fonts be sure to select fonts from different categories. There are three main font categories: serif (which have tiny “feet” on the letters), sans serif (with no decorative “feet”) and decorative (which include highly decorative and script or handwritten fonts).
9. Don’t overdo it with animation. If you plan to use animation in your ad, there are a few things to consider. You want the animation to draw the eye without offending the online viewer. When setting the animation speed, look for something that changes at a slow to moderate pace. It helps to set your animations so that they stop after three cycles; some sites may insist on this.
10. Less really is more. As you create your design, remember that less cluttered messages will make a stronger impact with the online viewer. Limit the number of elements — the colors, fonts, graphics and words — that you use in your ad and ask yourself whether your primary message is clear.
Web sites for the Banner Advertising:
Banner Exchange Programs: These programs offer a simple service. If you post a certain number of banner ads on your site, they will post your banner ad on another site. Usually, this isn’t an even exchange; you have to post more than one banner ad for every one of your banner ads they post. This is how the exchange program makes a profit. Their arrangement yields them more banner ad spaces than actual banner ads they need to place for their members, so they can sell the extra banner ad spaces to paying advertisers.
Buying Advertising Space: We can also buy a banner advertising space to place our advertisements and to do so we can use various sites.
Selling Advertising Space: Selling banner advertising space is a great way to use your site’s traffic to generate revenue, but it can be a bit tricky. The easiest option is to join a banner ad network, which will recruit advertisers, keep track of your earnings, and control banner ad placement on your site. In exchange for these services, the network will take a hefty percentage of the advertising money generated by your ad space. If your site gets a good deal of traffic, more than 100,000 impressions per month, then you should be able to join a good banner network’s CPM program.
How much money might you make through a banner ad network? Most networks are selling “run of site” ads to advertisers, and they are getting something like a $5 CPM rate for the ads. Then the network takes between 30% and 50% of the $5 as its cut. Therefore, you might expect to earn something like 0.3 cents per impression that appears on your site, or a $3 CPM rate. If your site generates 100,000 impressions per month, you can expect to receive a check for $300 every month. If you are getting paid per click, you might receive anywhere from 3 cents to 20 cents per click. 5 cents might be a typical average. If you get a 1% click rate and you have 100,000 impressions per month, that means that you might expect to receive $50 per month.