In the early days of the Internet, banner ads were the favourite marketers’ tool because of incredibly high CTRs. The clicks were cheap and people didn’t really mind clicking on those bright colourful and flashing banner adverts.
But to be honest, today’s average CTR for display ads has decreased to only 0.46%, which isn’t the CTR value marketer wants to see. Some people even say these ads are disruptive and annoying.
But when comparing the number of people clicking on a display ad and how much it costs, display ads still deliver a positive ROI for most investors. So what display advertising is, its benefits and common formats.
Let’s discuss them more in this post.
What is Display Advertising?
There’s no surprise when we see these kinds of ads below when browsing a website.
So what exactly is display advertising?
At the most basic level, display advertising can be defined as:
- A form of advertising
- Conveys a commercial message to targeted audiences of a web, social media platform, or other digital mediums in an attractive way
- These ads are often made up of videos, text, animations, even interactive applications, or different types of graphics
- Designed to lead viewers down the path to a company’s website or a dedicated landing page through the ads
- Go with various shapes and sizes and usually show up as banners, landing pages, pop-ups, or flash ads on websites and mostly on blogs.
Since the first appearance of online ads in 1994, some fundamental factors still remain these days. So, now you have your answer to “what is display advertising?.” So let’s dig deeper into this concept.
Display Ads Popularity: Latest statistics
According to Statista, Internet users worldwide increased by 332 million in the past 12 months. And now this figure has reached up to 4.66 billion users in total.
Global digital population (in billions)
Just by looking at the rapid growth of Internet access, it’s easy to understand why display ads have become one of the hottest advertising trends these days. According to statistical forecasting of Zenith:
- The total spend for display advertising hit 177.6 globally
- The Internet display ads account for 21.0% of the total ad spend worldwide by 2021
According to Zenith
Another Statista’s report shows that close to half of all online ad revenue (about 42.2%) in the U.S was generated via search advertising, while about 1/3 (31.5%) came from display ads.
Display advertising still plays an integral role in modern companies’ digital marketing strategies in building and increasing their online presence to a wide range of audiences. But, there’s an inevitable question on banner ads these days:
Does display advertising still work effectively?
The spending on digital ads is increasing over the years due to the rapid increase in Internet users worldwide. There are, indeed, challenges to display ads because of the appearance of ad blockers and low performance on CTRs.
Still, it doesn’t mean that display advertising is dead. Knowledge is power. With a solid understanding, merchants can implement banner ads in the most effective way.
An alternative to Display Advertising is Google Search Ads learn more here.
8 Common Types of Display Advertising
Digital display advertising has a variety of different forms, but at its core, it revolves around the same principle.
Standard Banner Ads
Basically, you can see banner ads in the form of an image in the strip shape and generally accompanied by text. A standard banner ad is nothing but a hyperlinked, image-based ad with no audio, videos, or additional features.
Static or banner ads are considered the oldest types of display ads. Still, the ones most widely used by digital marketers.
Apart from standard banner ads, marketers also use different display advertising forms to attract targeted groups effectively, optimize CTRs, and most importantly, get the best use of marketing cost.
Stepping up from the standard banner ads, animated ads appeared much more attractive to the audience. In addition, you can see a sense of movement on the animated ads instead of text only.
At the most basic level, an animated ad is any digital display unit that has movement with the purpose of capturing the target audience’s attention naturally.
The core value of this ad form comes from its unlimited creativity. Marketers can combine several factors (audio, text, images) in one ad which
- Make the ad more eye-catching and hard to ignore to viewers, unlike traditional image ads
- Offer more long-form ads than the traditional ones in order to convey more complex explanations about a product or service
A typical animated ad will consist of 2 to 3 (or even more) interchanging static images, GIFs, or flash media to create the movement.
Movement is considered one of the most effective ways to catch viewers’ attention regardless of your ad content.
You might be surprised to know that
- Youtuber is the world’s second-most visited platform, after Google
- Up to 93% of marketers admitted the importance of videos to their marketing strategies (According to a report of HubSpot)
These figures are enough to explain the extraordinary potential of video marketing, specifically video-based advertising for marketers.
Example of a video ad from a random post on abcNews
If animated ads make sense of movement through a 5-10 second looped video or image, a video ad is a video clip existing within a display ad. Today’s digital marketers use the space provided for an HTML5 banner ad to deliver a video.
Unlike other advertising forms, interactive ads aim at two-way communication between the business and customers. The great thing is that viewers can directly interact with the business’s product/ service displayed on the advertising in unusual ways, such as:
- Click on or verbally responding to an interactive ad
- Or a consumer can opt in to bring the interactive ad to life
- Offer playable ad that allows views to experience the product’s demo in seconds (primarily applied in the mobile gaming industry)
- Require to fill out a lead form or respond to a poll in exchange that person will get access to exclusive content
It’s not an exaggeration to say that interactive advertising is a shift from the more traditional (perhaps, tedious) method of advertising thanks to technology development. Furthermore, it gives businesses a new approach on how to grow engagement and increase brand awareness.
In the list of most common display ad forms, we can not miss native advertising. The unique point of this ad form comes from its ability to mirror the style and function of the media format in which they appear.
In other words, native ads can easily blend into the surrounding content, making it doesn’t look like an ad. We usually see this type of ad in social media feeds or as promoted content on various sites.
Another distinguishing point of native ads is that they usually include terms like “Promoted” or “Sponsored,” as you can see in the above example. Two more facts for you:
- Native ads create an 18% increase in purchase intent
- Get 20 – 60% higher engagement rates and 3x intention rates than display banner ads
Social media has changed the world we live in today so much that it directly influences consumers’ shopping habits and even the organization of modern businesses.
Facebook marketing at your fingertips with Be Media.
The rise of social media makes popular platforms like Facebook or Instagram a golden mine for businesses to approach and promote their products/ services. As a result, it’s not rare to see this kind of ad on Facebook.
Like responsive display ads, they are a combination of text and images or video with a CTA.
If other ads only take a small page’s space to display, interstitial ads refer to full-screen ads. In other words, it creates a temporary veil over the viewer’s screen.
Interstitial ads can appear suddenly in any page’s transition point when users are browsing or interacting with an app. This ad form has been widely used over the past few years thanks to the rise of mobile technology as well as smartphone users.
Usually, you can see this kind of ad in free-to-play mobile games. The game is free, but users will be required to view ads for a set amount of time to start the next level.
Though we can’t deny the annoyance of interstitial ads for users, they effectively capture attention when taking the entire screen.
Lightbox ad is a type of expandable display ad that Google released in 2012. Now, it’s available for use on the Google Display Network.
At first glance, a lightbox ad has a similar look, just like a standard banner ad in the form of a picture display or a video. However, when users click or hover their mouse over the ad, it then expands into a full-screen ad experience.
The expanded ads can include video, audio, animation, and other features to better engage with the viewers.
Plus, when a lightbox ad is expanded, everything around it is dimmed, creating the lightbox effect. This creates an immersive advertising experience since prospects focus 100% of their attention on your ads instead of surrounding content.
5+ Reasons Why Display Advertising is Important
Even during these unprecedented times, display advertising continues to grow with no sign of stopping. Reasons for this growth?
- Support Brand Awareness & Visibility. With display advertising, marketers can target a wide range of users in the digital world. As for increasing brand awareness, display ads will push a brand’s presence to as many people as possible
- Highly Targeted. Today’s programmatic advertising software allows marketers to better control their ads with specific parameters like who the ad will be exposed to or the display time, etc. This ensures your ads are seen by the most relevant audience
- Retargeting. Display ads can be used to retarget consumers based on their behavior online, especially those who visited your site at least once in the past. By doing this, you can increase brand awareness and be more memorable to potential customers
- Visually Appealing. Marketers can make display ads more engaging and personalized with images, videos, text, and even motion effects. The ad itself can easily stand out to users and get their attention compared to regular PPC ads
- Trackable and Measurable. Data helps a business compare results between expectation and reality. For future ad optimization, they must be tracked via various indications (impressions, reach, CTR, etc.). Plus, avoid wasted ad spend by knowing which ads work and which doesn’t
- Affordable. Compared to other advertising forms (like print or out-of-home advertising), display ads can be a quite economical solution
- Customizable payment package. You can choose and set a display campaign with specific parameters that best suits your available budget and objectives with no difficulty
- Increase traffic and conversion. With proper implementation of an ad campaign, compelling content, right targeted groups, display ads have a positive impact on conversion rates and site traffic
Display Advertising: Challenge or Opportunity
It’s true that display advertising is facing challenges. However, being data-driven and creative in display advertising are 2 keys that determine your success.
It’s all up to you whether to overcome challenges and turn them into opportunities or not. The best results come from a plan, and with the way tracking, privacy and data insights are today this plan should be ever-evolving over time. Thanks for reading!
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