The placement of advertising banners is undoubtedly one of the most common forms of online advertising today. In the meantime, advertising agencies and other providers have also established their own technical language to define banner sizes and formats precisely. Terms like Super Banner, Rectangle, Square and Skyscraper belong to the international standard.
According to the latest surveys of various online reports on market volume, this form of advertising continues to be a growth market with considerable potential. According to the Federal Association for the Digital Economy, the growth rates of this form of advertising regularly exceed 35% compared to previous years. Companies invest every second euro in classic online advertising, which is for the most part equivalent to banner advertising.
The first advertising banners were simple, non-animated graphic images. It was the only form of presentation that could be implemented by earlier web browser versions. The desired action is to click on the advertiser’s homepage linked to the banner. Important success factors for statistical banners are the message that encourages the user to click further and the correct placement.
These banners are displayed in the form of GIF files. Several statistical banners are combined to a graphic. The sequential insertion of the individual images enables the simultaneous placement of several advertising messages. As with the static banner, the user is expected to click on the linked homepage of the advertiser.
Today, the animated banner is one of the most frequently used forms of advertising, since neither the user nor the server operator have any special technical requirements. The only restriction with animated banners is the storage capacity and the limits set in this respect, which are often reached with animated banners.
In contrast to statistical and animated banners, HTML banners consist not only of individual graphics, but also of various HTML elements. The HTML code generated for the banner is integrated into the source code of the advertising medium.
Thus, interactive elements such as drop-down menus or selection boxes based on HTML can be displayed. This enables the user to select a specific product on the banner and click on the corresponding information page.
Nanosite banners, also called “microsites”, are small independent websites. On the advertising space of an existing website, another independent functional website is displayed. In this way, extensive advertising information with numerous functions can be integrated without leaving the website of the advertising medium. The programming of the nano-site banners is complex and requires specific technical solutions.
Rich media banners
Video, audio and 3D components can be integrated into this increasingly popular banner form. System requirements for rich media banners are mostly plug-ins or other server extensions and therefore also dependent on the user’s operating system.
Even with this advertising banner, the user does not have to leave the website of the advertising medium. With “transactive” this advertising form describes the high variation possibilities and the interactivity with other servers, whereby the respective contents are taken over and adapted. Content, audio and video streams or even auctions can be integrated into these multifunctional banners.
As the name suggests – this banner form streams audio and video streams as well as movies and trailers. In principle, any streaming technology can be used for data transmission, whereby streams integrated in flash banners offer the most advertising possibilities. The multimedia use with the integration of all kinds of spots increases the visitor’s attention and thus leads to better advertising success.
One of the newest variants is the Pixel Banner. The advertising space is not only available to a single advertising medium, but to as many as desired. The current area sizes are currently block sizes with, for example, 10 x 10 pixels, which are offered at fixed prices. With pixel banners small pictures can be imported with pertinent text including a linking.
With this banner form the click is not to be forced with the user, but it is set on the freiwilligen click, which takes place from boredom, curiosity or interest. The advertising strategists assume that the voluntary viewing automatically increases the streams of visitors.
What does banner advertising cost?
There are several methods for billing: With the CPC model (cost per click), the number of clicks is calculated and the user gets to the advertiser’s homepage. In the CPM model, also known in German as TKP (thousand contact price), the number of “page impressions” is billed, i.e. how often the banner is displayed to the visitors of the website.
This type of billing is particularly suitable for websites with high traffic, which can show more than 1 million page impressions per month. With the CPS model (cost per sale) or lead, the user has to take a further action after the click – such as buying in an online shop or subscribing to a newsletter. This type of advertising, in which an actual added value is generated for the advertiser after the banner click, is also becoming increasingly important under the term affiliate marketing.
Economy of banner advertising
For the customer who commissions the banner advertising, the profitability of the advertising campaign is of course an important factor. One of the measuring factors, the click-through rate (CTR), indicates the attractiveness of the banner. This involves analyzing the relation between the number of clicks on the banner and the total number of ads.
A further analysis tool is the measurement of conversion rates, which indicates the ratio of the number of clicks to the number of measurable transactions. Pure branding considerations can also play a role in the campaign, and surveys can be used to test factors such as brand awareness.
Banner advertising is widespread and testing efficiency in terms of attracting new customers and increasing sales is part of the day-to-day business of all advertisers. Studies regularly show that Internet users suffer more and more from “banner blindness” and no longer perceive banner ads.
Further studies provide information on annually declining click rates in online advertising, but without taking formats and placements into account.
Based on these results, new psychological approaches are now deliberately aimed at breaking the habits of Internet users, with the intention of counteracting “banner blindness”.