If you’ve ever been online you’ve probably seen a Web ad or two. It’s usually a picture but it’s still more complicated than that. You can not just open a Photoshop file and throw photos together. NO! IT IS HARD AND FRUSTRATING AND YOU WONT KNOW UNTIL YOU EXPERIENCE IT. In this article, we’re going to take a look at banner advertising and investigate just what creating a strong ad is all about.
Banner ads are one of the principle forms of advertising on the web today and, for many sites, a fundamental source of revenue. There is a limited space and control over positioning present challenges to the design process, but with the right planning and consideration, they don’t need to impact your ad that much. To learn more click here.
Motion and Animation
Using animation and motion in your ad can increase your chances of user engagement, but too much can easily end up annoying users instead. Implementing subtle transitions and motion effects is generally a great way of grabbing attention and increasing interaction, though you should limit the length to a non-looped 15-30 seconds (depending on the size of the unit). While subtle transition-style animations don’t degrade the user experience too much when run automatically on page load, more intense animation that needs the user to actually focus should be limited to when explicit enabled by the user. There are technical concerns with animation too, however. Plugin-reliant technologies like Flash, while once a prominent driver for animated ads, should be avoided when more universally complaint solutions are available instead. This applies especially if the same ad is being used as part of a mobile campaign.
Size and Specifications
Since the majority of banner ads are produced to be displayed on someone else’s site adhering to the industry consensus on a number of factors is a must. When running a campaign that stretches beyond a single location this is very important. If you already know where your ad’s going to be shown and understand the sizing of that space, that’s great but, if not, limiting yourself to the IAB-endorsed sizes ensures you the best chance of compatibility when you find a space. The IAB’s guidelines, however, is more than the size.
Strong Call to Action
The Call to Action is literally the most important element of the whole ad, it convenes users to interact with it. The Call to Action is the first stage in a Conversion Funnel and interacting with it is generally the main purpose of the individual ad. Your Call to Action can come in a number of forms, including a traditional button or even a QR code that reveals a website or video when scanned. Your ad needs to tell a user what to do, or they won’t do anything. Your ad must instruct them to “find out more” or “buy it now” in order to have any chance of successfully navigating through the conversion process. Therefore, you need to design a Call to Action that is hierarchically significant to the visual design of your ad and very clearly lays out what to do.
Lastly, taking responsive design into account is key to future-proofing your ad designs and maximizing their impact across a variety of screen sizes and devices. As mobile traffic rises, designing responsive ads becomes increasingly vital to success. When you’re designing a campaign for a site, or sites, that have responsive designs implemented, you should offer ads in alternating sizes, but be sure to not let this changing form negate any of the other points we’ve already brought up.