Introduction To Online Display Advertising

Online display advertising is a common form of digital marketing and can be effective when done correctly. Banner adverts are on most web pages and can often be a nuisance, sometimes not. They can be as just pictures, text, video, audio and more recently, rich media. Rich media is enhanced media that utilizes a combination of text, audio, still images, animation, video, and interactivity content for active participation from the recipient of the ad.

What To Consider?

What is the aim or objective of your advert? – That is one of the main things to think about when creating a banner. You need to think about what you want out of the banner, whether it’s to get people to sign up, general awareness or to sell a product. Depending on what it is, you must design your banner accordingly and never forget your call to action.

Who is your target audience? – If you’re selling modified car parts, you aren’t going to place an advert onto a children’s toy website are you? You place it somewhere relevant like a forum. Irrelevant ads are usually a waste of money because you are not reaching your potential audience.

What skills do you have and what is your budget? – Quite often, outsourcing banner adverts is expensive and if you’re a small business or start-up, it’s not always possible. Using free software to create banners is the best way to save some money and will also help in the long run. If this isn’t available, you should look at what sort of advert you want and find the most cost effective way of running the ad. When working on a budget, previously I have used Canva. If you get stuck, Google Ads Display Network has a cool Ad-Builder.

Does your ad violate copyright? – Copyright is a large issue in marketing as the original owners of whatever it was (picture, video etc) will try and get any ounce of money out of you. This is why you must make sure all images and videos are royalty free and you have the correct permissions to use them. Websites with free stock images for commercial use include;   Pixabay,  Unsplash and Pexels.

Publishing To The World Wide Web

Ad networks are the most popular place for people to put their ads up, as it’s easy and all done online. Many people are looking to earn extra money from their website by displaying adverts so they go to ad networks to find these. The cheapest way to publish is doing the ad by CPM (Cost per thousand) and (Cost per Click.)  Some examples of Ad Networks are; Google Adsense, and BuySellAds.

If you have videos, Youtube is a great way to advertise! People chose to monetize their videos so they earn by displaying ads, and that’s where your video comes in! If somebody has a popular Youtube video and your ad is at the beginning or even at the bottom of the video it’s worth the payout.

Apps are a great way to publish ads because most people have smartphones with various apps. You can put an ad for your company that is relevant to a game that people are playing. Say for instance there is a fitness app (maybe your own app), you could put ads up for healthy diets, boot camps (by location)… There are endless possibilities.


To evaluate the success of a banner ad you need to look at what traffic has come to the website since the advert was put out and how many of them were converted into paying customers. If not a lot of people did convert then there is a low ROI (Return on Investment).

Sometimes, people put out banner adverts simply just to raise awareness of their company. If the original aim was for that and you have more followers on Twitter/Facebook then that is a successful campaign. If you wanted sales from your banner ad but only got awareness, this is not a totally failed campaign. The visitor may have said no at this time, but because they followed you it could be a yes in future.

To evaluate properly, you need to look at where the traffic has come from or whether it is organic reach. Sometimes a spike in traffic can be purely coincidental and you must check to see if this is the case before thinking about doing another banner ad campaign. You can also view reports so everything is a lot more broken down and easier to read rather than figures. From here you can see if it was successful or not.