Sure, every business needs to be online these days. The most successful ones, however, advertise there, too. Banner ads – those popular rectangles of ad space that pepper Web sites across the Internet – can do a lot within a relatively small space and for a relatively small investment. Among other things, they can:
- Build brand awareness.
- Boost Web site traffic.
- Generate sales leads.
Conceive your campaignBanner ads are worth testing if you want to sell a low-end product to impulse buyers or if you want to develop brand awareness for higher-end services. Research the benefits of banners to decide if they're the right medium for your message.
Write your adA banner should read like a billboard: short and sweet. Keep text simple and always include a call to action so that prospects don't just click, they buy.
Design your adThe best way to grab consumers' attention is with stellar graphics and rich media, such as animation, sound and interactive effects. The more attractive an ad is, the more memorable its message will be.
Choose the right real estateA successful banner speaks to the right people in the right places so use banner advertising on smaller sites with specialized content.
Purchase ad spaceBanner ads performance is measured in impressions (the number of times an ad is seen) and sold at a cost per thousand impressions (CPM for short). The average price for a banner ad is between $20 and $100 CPM. The size of both your ad and your audience can affect its price.
Look for resultsIs your banner working? To find out, you'll need software to monitor impression and click-through rates, and a system for measuring conversions, or the number of click-throughs that result in a purchase.
- Banners should only be one part of your online advertising campaign. Combine them with e-newsletters, search engine advertising and search engine optimization for maximum effect.
- Link to the correct page on your Web site; linking to a page that is irrelevant or out-of-date can spell disaster.
- Keep your ad's file size low so that it loads quickly and easily on prospects' computers.