Lessons in Online Branding: Make Your Banner Ads Clickable

Banner ads are one of the most common types of internet marketing, and they’ve been around since the inception of social media. Lately, you’ve probably been seeing banner ads that are directly related to your recent search history.

Banner Blindness

If your business has deployed banner ads as part of your marketing strategy, you may already be aware of a phenomenon called “banner blindness”. This refers to the fact that banner ads are often ignored, which happens for a number of reasons, including:

  • Irrelevance to the viewer
  • Fear of spam
  • Dislike of popups
  • Wariness of unsafe content, like viruses or phishing

Most internet users what to know that the content they click on is safe, but even more so, they’re unlikely to engage with any content they don’t find interesting. According to a survey from AdKeeper, 43 percent of internet users don’t find banner ads engaging, while 31 percent only feel like clicking on banner ads when they’re “in the mood” for them.

Creating Banner Ad Success

With all this in mind, you may feel that banner ads are not a good investment of your time and money. However, banner ads can actually be quite effective. Here are some of the most important elements of a good banner ad.

  • Clean visuals and simple copy. More and more web brands are leaning toward the use of flat designs, and this is true for banner ads as well. Avoid using too many colors and definitely steer clear of flashing gifs.
  • A clear CTA. The basic principles of copywriting still apply when creating a banner ad. Your ads should communicate exactly what users should expect to see when they follow your link – especially for those users who are concerned about opening pages that could be unsafe for their computers.
  • Consistency. When a user clicks a banner ad, they shouldn’t feel confused by the page at which they’ve arrived. If your site is completely different from the ad and doesn’t show the same information, you can assume the user isn’t going to stay and click around. Consistency also means you should stay on brand, with the same fonts, colors, and tone of copy to avoid further confusion.
  • Simplicity. What it all comes down to is keeping it simple. If all you have on your ad is branding and a CTA, that’s fine – users don’t want to look at cluttered copy. Basic principles of graphic design reign supreme here; simply stay on brand and place a clear CTA with an obvious purpose in an obvious place.

If the concept of designing a banner is confusing, a graphic design service is your best bet.

While there are many types of software readily available for beginners, if you want to create the most readily clickable banner ads, it’s a good idea to turn the process over to designers who know the ins and outs of each step.