Banners as a marketing tool are almost as old as the internet but infinitely more interesting and variable these days. However, whether you are creating your own banner or engaging a designer to create it some simple tips can help your marketing efforts using banners is more successful.
Banner Weight Influences Success
The heavier a banner is (that means longer load time) the less likely it is to be seen by the customer. Ensure that your banner is no more than a 23 - 25 KB file size. Web visitors are not usually looking for banners and they will not wait for a banner to load, so the lighter the banner is the more effective it can be. Some banner designers may not understand this well but it is your job to communicate that to them as part of your success depends upon it.
Flash Banners Are Not Always Effective
Flash banners are visually interesting. However, flash banners are not very effective banners for sales purposes. They also add to design expenses. In addition, they tend to consume larger amounts of bandwidth that many sites will avoid.
Banners Must Get to the Point
Even the best and most interestingly designed banner has only a matter of seconds to generate the interest required to convince the consumer to click on the banner. Make your point fast and simple. Complex banners are not conducive to quick action.
Specialized Banner Designs
One of the most effective (in some cases) banner designs is called an alert. They mimic the standard windows alerts. These can achieve a fantastic response rate however; they are most effective on a non-internet savvy population. For those more technically knowledgeable consumers then the standard banner design and text will work better.
Compose Your Banner and Text to Maximize your Return on Investment
There are several ways to conduct a banner campaign and to pay for it. Your banner should be designed and your text should be written to gain the best ROI (return on investment) possible. For example, if you are paying per click on your banner you want to be very specific in your text. Text reading, "Click here now for "Discounted Mattresses" is a general ad. However, the visitor's perception of what is discounted may not be the same as your own. A better way to state that would be to "Click here now for King Sized Mattresses Starting at $300.00". You have then assured yourself that the person who clicks and you paid for thinks that $300.00 is a good deal on a king-sized mattress.
In that type of campaign then it is important that your visitor and you agree on what discounted is and your text is the tool to do that.
On the other hand, when paying for banner views at a cost per thousand rates, then it is important that the banner be displayed on sites, which relate to the product you are promoting. Controlling where your banner is displayed and on what sites, will control your expenses and improve your return-on-investment rate.
Your Banner Should Include an Action Statement
Banners are most effective when they also include a call to action. You should tell the surfer to click now, or "Supplies are limited" or any other variation on your banner. It is common to include a call to action in any sales tool and a banner is a sales tool.
Add Interest to Your Banner with Animation
An animated banner can stand out if well designed. Since it will probably be displayed with other banners, animation can make it outstanding. However, it should not be hard on the eyes either.
Standard Banner Sizes May Increase Use of a Banner
A banner can be any shape or style these days however some sizes and shapes are standard. Many websites have spaces allotted for only these standard sized banners. To increase the exposure a banner gets, it is important to stay within the standard sizes.
The standard sizes here are published by the Interactive Advertising Bureau and sticking to the sizes listed may increase the use of your banners.
Standard rectangle banners
- 300 x 250 - Medium Rectangle
- 250 x 250 - Square Pop-Up
- 240 x 400 - Vertical Rectangle
- 336 x 280 - Large Rectangle
- 180 x 150 - Rectangle
Standard banner & button sizes
- 468 x 60 - Full Banner
- 234 x 60 - Half Banner
- 88 x 31 - Micro Bar
- 120 x 90 - Button 1
- 120 x 60 - Button 2
- 120 x 240 - Vertical Banner
- 125 x 125 - Square Button
- 728 x 90 - Leaderboard
Standard skyscraper sizes
- 160 x 600 - Wide Skyscraper
- 120 x 600 - Skyscraper
- 300 x 600 - Half Page Ad