How using banner ads can help increase traffic to your site

Banner ads: no one really likes them. They're not interesting to create, they look pretty horrible and, quite frankly, they can be very annoying.

So why have we just uploaded a new banner ad to promote our Reputation Monitor? 

These annoying little flashing ads really grab peoples' attention and can drive traffic to the right pages on your site. More visitors hopefully means more conversions.

Why are banner ads so ugly and annoying?

If a banner ad is a subtle and harmoniously designed feature that blends in beautifully with the rest of a page then no one is going to notice it. It has to be glaringly obvious to grab a visitor's attention and drag them away from the content that they are/were originally trying to look at.

Bright colours, big shiny click-able buttons – rotating, flashing or twinkling elements help too. Banner ads are also very small. Imagine a crowd of adults talking at a normal level and just one child. This child my have to scream to be noticed amongst this crowd; this is effectively what a banner ad has to do, really SHOUT for attention. 

As there is a limited amount of space you may also want to use several frames that rotate to be able to get a few messages across to the visitor. However, people don't have all day so make it as short and snappy as possible.

How did we make our banner ad?

This banner ad was made using Photoshop.  Photoshop has the ability to make animated gifs using a number of frames and setting the amount of time that you would like the frame to appear for. The frames are created in layers and you select specific layers to be visible for certain frame lengths.  Here are the three frames we have used:

frame1

frame2

frame3

How to create a successful banner ad to upload using Google Adwords

When uploading your banner ad with Google Adwords, file size is very important.  Banners may need to be as small as 50kb to be accepted.

To keep file size down, remember: 

  • Complex images use more colours.
  • Avoid big imagery
  • Avoid long transparent fades between frames
  • Stick to a small colour pallet
  • You can also limit the amount of colours used when saving the file for web – this is a delicate process as too few colours can cause image quality to deteriorate too much.
Also, when creating ads for Google Adwords there are specific banner dimensions that must be considered.

Do you use banner ads?

If you design or use banner ads we would love to hear what works best for you.  We are always looking to improve our click through rate and would love to hear what you find really attracts visitors' attention and converts well.

What is Reputation Monitor?

Finally, what was our banner for? Reputation Monitor helps monitor what is being said about your company and allows you to protect your brand online – visit our site to find out more.

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About the author
Leonie Wharton

Leonie Wharton

Leonie is one of the longest standing members at Distilled and was here when the company was just 5 members. Her time is split evenly over client and internal work. Client work focuses on linkbait projects for our clients, working closely with the...   read more