Banner ads are not created equal. Some are meant to be effective in conveying your message, while some are meant to be clicked! Low click rates experienced by some online advertisers are not necessarily the result of the medium but rather, the effectiveness of your banner ads in building brand awareness, generating click-throughs, and boosting sales depends on how it was created. Click-through rate or CTR is a way of measuring the success of an online advertising campaign. A CTR is obtained by dividing the number of users who clicked on an ad on a web page by the number of times the ad was delivered (impressions). For example, if your banner ad was delivered 100 times (impressions delivered) and one person clicked on it (clicks recorded), then the resulting CTR would be 1 percent.
In the niche magazine space banners work. Unlike bigger sites, users coming to niche sites are not just “surfing the web”. The days when people said they found your site by “just surfing around” are over. Users are more educated to the online experience that ever before. They are coming to a site for a reason. They are looking for something specific. Maybe it is a hobby they are looking to explore, or an article about knitting. In any event, most users do not just happen upon a rock climbing site or ATV web site for example. Sales people take note, niche users come to niche sites for a reason. So, this makes that niche user a prime target for niche banner advertising. Advertising a car supermarket on www.carsupermarkets.co.uk or car leasing company on www.contracthireandleasing.com will work very well because these are very busy, industry specific websites. Advertising car leasing on a website listing used cars for sale or vans on a car website will not deliver the same level of response or reach the target audience.
100% of all internet users surveyed have used Google. 49% of all online searches are done through Google each day. These users are searching for something specific. This means that banner ads on niche sites are very important. If they were not, Google’s multi-million dollar ad words business would go belly up. It is interesting to note that even Google is recognizing the resurgence of banner ads as they have now begun to serve banner ads into the spots previously reserved for those little text ads on the right and top of every search results page.
In the end you will still come across advertisers that simply do not believe that banner ads work. My research and experience report that banner ads on niche oriented site tend to earn a .15% greater click thru rate than banners on bigger non-niche sites. The biggest click thru rates I have ever seen were reported in a study by Nielsen/NetRatings that showed the right approach to creating banner ads can entice viewers to actually click on a banner. The banners of Harry and David, a gourmet food gifts store, yield a very impressive click rate of 67.21% among at-home viewers; while iWon/PaceFoods' banners generated 40% click rate among the at-work viewers. These figures refute the myth that banner ads will always have a low click-through rate.
Well designed banner ads on niche specific sites where the ad matches the potential user are unstoppable. All advertising works best when a customer wants to see it. One of the major factors influencing the effectiveness of banner advertising will be the quality, popularity, and specific target audience of the website carrying your banner advert.
The views of Ryan Dohrn are 100% personal in nature and do not represent the views of his employer, any other person, company or entity in any way. Any similarly is coincidental in nature. Please visit Ryan’s online at http://www.RyanDohrn.com or e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org