Digital marketing is an excellent platform for marketing efforts or advertising campaigns. 28% of American adults are constantly online, so it’s an excellent place to engage their audience. Marketers must continue to identify ways to engage them with favorable experiences.
Banner ads are one of the most prevalent forms of online marketing. While this approach is still receiving mixed reviews, banner ads can be a powerful tool in creating brand awareness and generating leads.
There is a basis why affiliate programs feed you with banners for promotion, and that is because banner ads are still an effective marketing tool. When you visit any advertisement-containing website, you are almost guaranteed to see at least one banner ad. Even if this type of ad has been in existence for a long time, the popularity of banner ads has never really dwindled. Suppose you contemplate putting together a marketing campaign or putting up ads on your site for revenue generation. In that case, you should definitely understand all the advantages and disadvantages of using banner ads.
Why Marketers Use Banner Ads
The reason why marketers use banner ads is that they promote brand awareness. Likewise, banner ads are excellent lead generators. When web users click on your ad, they are directed to your website. This process lets you catch lead contact information and follow up.
Just like any other marketing channel, the use of banner ads has its advantages and disadvantages. As a marketer, you must decide what is best for your marketing effort. You have to select the option that will most probably help you produce leads, boost revenue, and increase your return on investment.
For those marketers out there who still can’t decide if they will give banner ads a shot, we’ve listed down the pros and cons of using them. Read on and see if banner ads are the best kind for you.
Pros of banner ads
There are a lot of benefits that banner ads can offer. Here are some of the pros linked to this kind of display advertising.
You can determine the cost of banner advertising by its ad size. If the ad is smaller, the fee is more likely smaller. The price is also affected by the number of impressions and clicks. On average, the banner ad’s cost per click (CPC) will depend on your medium and industry. The fee can be as economical as 50 cents per one thousand impressions (CPM). Thus, you can show ads 1,000 times for paying as little as 50 cents.
You can also set your guidelines for your marketing budget with the help of Ad spend tracking. You may choose among size flexibility, CPM, and CPC. Even if you have a tight budget, you can still achieve positive results if your goal is clear. This allows businesses, regardless of size, to advertise their products on top websites.
2. Easy to create
The most evident reason for using banner advertising instead of other ad formats is because it is unbelievably easy to work with. There are a lot of online graphic design tools that can help you create one from a banner template. You can quickly size the banner ad to fit the space where you will post it, and you can also easily change the banner once it is not yielding the anticipated results. Even beginners can create banner ads from a banner template that meets all basic specifications and successfully draw the audience’s attention.
Marketers no longer have difficulty developing digital advertising materials because banner ads creation is easy. About 97% of marketers are most likely to create their ads independently. Due to the oversimplified design of banners, almost everyone with computer skills can make a basic ad from a banner template. Specifications are uncomplicated, and sizes are standard. It is easy creating a layout that addresses basic requirements, and they also can be uploaded with ease. Should the banner ads not produce the expected results, you can easily change the design in a banner template.
3. Exceptionally targetable
According to studies, about 71% of consumers will go for more personalized digital ads. Banner ads achieve this by successfully targeting your audiences. Qualifiers such as online behavior and demographics will help identify your optimal consumer. With this information, you can create essential ads that attract a specific audience. Moreover, you can utilize transactional emails to provide consistent brand experience to recently engaged targets.
To ensure that your ads will appear on essential websites, you can select from a list of categories. You also have the option to further segment your banner ads by interests or topics. You can also use banner ads as a remarketing tool to connect previous website visitors who exited the site without completing a transaction.
4. Versatility in presentation
You are no longer limited only to a static image for your advertisements because you have the option to include rich media in your banners. Adding rich media such as slideshows, animations, and streaming media will provide an unforgettable impression on your web page visitors.
Using compression tools, you can minimize the size of your rich media. This will enable you to make eye-catching advertisements without slowing the page’s loading time considerably. If you choose to include rich media into your banner ads, you must know that webmasters would usually put a cap on the ad’s file size that they will accept. You must see that your banner ad fulfills the criteria before purchasing a page space.
5. Building brand recognition
It is true that banner advertising ideally produces instant sales. It also has a role in establishing brand recognition, which makes banner ads a vital marketing tool regardless of whether web page visitors are clicking the banner or not. With sufficient exposure to your banner ads, Web users will subconsciously register your brand even if they are not precisely focusing on your banner ads. Likewise, banner ads effectively make your potential customer highly aware of your brand from being unaware of it.
6. Flexible pricing structures
Conventionally, advertising space sellers bill the advertiser according to the number of visitors clicking the ad. Even if that price arrangement is still common, some plans enable you to pay a set fee for every particular result. An example of that is a web user making a purchase or completing a survey.
Marketers can also buy advertising space via real-time bidding. This allows advertisers to purchase top-quality advertising space at a lower bid while furnishing total control over the websites where their banners appear.
Cons of banner ads
While it is evident that banner ads have advantages for your marketing efforts, it is also worth knowing their downsides. Here are some of the disadvantages of utilizing banner ads in your marketing campaign.
1. Lower click-through rate
Click-through rate (CTR) is the one that measures the frequency of a viewer acting on an ad. Even if, on average, the search ads are about two percent CTR, display ads would average about 0.06 percent. The reason for this is that search ads are using a pull approach. They are being searched for by consumers who desire and intend to buy. The moment a person sees your ads, they may not have the intent or desire to make a purchase. The push approach is the one being used by banner ads.
Furthermore, banner ads have a lower CTR. No less than 56% of display ads are never viewed. Some of the reasons for this are their ad size position or placement on a web page. Another contributing factor is banner blindness. Users of the web are being bombarded with thousands of digital ads every day. Some will subconsciously notice the banners on the sites they are visiting. Others are avoiding them intentionally through the use of ad blocker software.
2. Yield lower conversions
Conversions are the actions that a user performs while visiting your site. You can complete CTR registrations, forms, or sales. When the user is not clicking through your display ads, he is not visiting your site to act. A lower CTR would mean more down conversions.
Often, banner ads are the initial impression an audience will have on your brand. If your banner ad is not captivating, the audience may just ignore it. The moment a user clicks on your ad, it will usually bring him to a different website. This can result in a high bounce rate and distrust. Banner ads can stretch out to a broad audience. This will lead to an inflow of unqualified targets who do not have an interest in your brand.
3. Having limitations
To ensure that the ads are clear and functional, marketers should abide by technical requirements. Before banner ads are approved, they must meet some guidelines first. Banners contain specified size guidelines, and there are also limitations on headline character count. Also, per image, you can only include a specific amount of text. With these standards, the amount of content incorporated into your ad is minimized.
There are strict regulations on topics ranging from healthcare to gambling. There are also advertising policies that restrict specific types of content. At times, content is approved only by a particular or limited audience. This means that only a few audiences will see your ads, thereby lowering further the chance of click-throughs.
4. No guaranteed results
So far, the most significant problem with banner advertising is the fact that each advertising unit that you buy carries a risk because clicks are not guaranteed. What is guaranteed in banner advertising are the impressions for the advertisement. This means that you can receive lower clicks than expected, resulting in an inefficient marketing campaign.
5. Irrelevant traffic
You have to be extra careful in choosing the website where you will place your advertisement. Because you are in complete control over which website you will place your advertisement on, you may observe that the traffic aimed at your landing page may not be as related to what you are hoping for. For instance, you might be trying to sell a house and purchase an advertisement unit on a housing website. But a portion of the website might be on how to renovate homes. This means that the audience will not be as interested in purchasing a house but in renovating them.
Banner advertising can help you with your marketing campaign. Just like any other form of advertisement, the use of banner ads has its advantages and disadvantages. You have to consider what makes the most sense for your particular marketing budget and strategy.
Like any other form of marketing, you can intensify the success of banner ads by using numerous forms of digital marketing to boost and enhance your efforts.
While the use of banner ads has its pros and cons, having the right strategy can make it positively affect your business. You could use banner ads if you want to have a relatively tight budget to begin your ad campaign or increase brand awareness. All you have to do is identify which form of advertisement would better fit your current needs.
Shelly Solis is a digital marketer and mompreneur. She is the former editor-in-chief of the Central Echo. Now, she enjoys working with SaaS founders as the CEO of SaaSLaunchr, a digital marketing agency offering expert services on SaaS SEO, content marketing, and blog outreach.