Online advertising, together with well crafted SEO strategies, is THE way to increase visibility on the internet. No matter how well-designed a website is, it has to compete with the millions already in existence. Internet ads are, therefore, one of the surest ways to get it noticed.
The odds of a website making it to the top 5 or 10 results of a search engine's return page depends on organic and paid advertising. Organic refers to hits resulting from relevancy to a search term while paid ads, also called PPC or pay per click, is a result of paying a search engine every time a user clicks on an ad. Both bring in traffic but free results are harder to get unless a website is completely optimized. With PPC, ads are posted right where they can be seen.
Now that we've got that out of the way, let's focus on the type of advertisements you can design and deliver to get traffic.
Banner ads: Banner ads are one of the most popular. Similar to physical banner ads, they feature colors, graphics and text. They may be bought or designed yourself with the last option recommended only if you have knowledge about online ads.
Free online tools exist to make design easy and effective. Animated ads – using GIF formats – are popular because they grab attention faster. Of course, well-designed static ads are also effective. Make sure they reach target audiences through readable text, relevant and concise content and colors and graphics that don't hurt the eyes.
Floating ads: Floating ads hover over a webpage, compelling users to either close them in order to view the page or prompt them to visit the site being advertised. They're impossible to miss. According to statistics, they generate around 30 clicks per 1,000 impressions, far more effective than banner ads which don't amount to even a dozen.
Floating ads may or may not be animated, play sound or provide a means to escape with a 'close' button. When designing one, always include an option to close because it can drive people to log out of a site entirely.
Like banner ads, floating ads must be designed to impress whether it's due to an offer, an innovative product or service and so on.
Text ads: Cheaper and easier to design with emphasis on content, text ads can be effective provided they contain relevant content. Like newspaper ads, you pay the host for ad space. Some allow strict limits on how many words can be included while others are less restrictive.
Opt-in mails: These are served through emails to a list of recipients who've shown an interest in receiving information on a topic. Not regarded as spam, they're quite effective if sent at the right time of day, adhere to anti-spam rules like providing contact details of the sender, including an 'unsubscribe' option, and of course, containing relevant content.
Blogging: Who would've thought blogs would become one of the most popular types of websites? They're used for everything from imparting knowledge, providing news on different subject matters and advertising. Considered a more targeted form of online advertising, they can achieve large fan followings as they speak to customers on a more personal level and permit interaction through the use of comments sections and sharing features.
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