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What Is Display Advertising?

Guide about display advertising header image.
Everything you need to know about display advertising. (Image credit: Unknown)

Display advertising is a type of online advertising designed to show your company’s ad on a relevant third party website. If you have ever been on a website and noticed ads on the sidebar or top banner, that’s display advertising. 

By venturing into display advertising, this allows your ad to fit seamlessly into an audience’s daily life. Whether they are browsing online, watching YouTube or even checking their email. 

People use display ads for the same reasons traditional ads are employed – to grab attention and raise awareness. Except, display ads have an added advantage. They allow you to target specific demographics to find the people who’d be most interested in your business, rather than leaving it to chance like most traditional advertising methods.

Display advertising is tailored, effective, cheaper and relevant to your intended market. For digital advertisers far and wide – this ticks a lot of important boxes. There’s no wonder why worldwide display advertising is expected to grow by 18.5% in 2021, according to Bannerflow

Throughout this blog, we’ll delve deep into the world of display advertising, including the good, the bad and everything in between.

The Good and Bad of Display Advertising

Like everything in life, it is important to weigh up the pros and cons of something before diving straight in. That’s why we’ve created this blog – so you can see for yourself whether display advertising is the right move for you.

First of all, we’ll start on a positive note with the good parts of display advertising.

Display Advertising: The Good

Display ads are relatively inexpensive when compared to other online advertising efforts. You just need one potential customer to convert into a paying customer in order to get a return on investment. Here are a few more reasons why display advertising is beneficial:

They’re Visually Appealing

People tend to respond much more to innovative, visually-led ads. If you think of an ad you saw recently – think about why you remember it. It is probably because of its visual elements, whether it be an image or a video. 

With high quality graphic content, these instantly trump lengthy character counts on text-heavy ads. Luckily with these ads, you can use images, video or audio in order to grab the attention of users.

Increase Brand Awareness

Display ads are a great way to build brand awareness. As these ads are visual, they can be styled using your logo, company colours, slogans and other attributes that people can instantly associate with your brand. 

Display ads are extremely handy for boosting brand familiarity and initiating product attraction. The more people are exposed to your ad, the more they will become aware of you and trust you. This all contributes to engaging viewers and encouraging them to click.

Allow Accurate Targeting

Display ads will allow you to target relevant people to your website. Using geographical and behavioural data, you can reach users that will benefit the most from your product or service. 

You can also retarget, meaning you can reach out to people that have previously expressed interest in your business. This clever technology plays on a person’s existing curiosity, and helps lure ad viewers to take the plunge due to the familiarity, accessibility and convenience. 

This acts as a win-win-win for everyone involved. The third party for securing funding – the advertiser for reaching a tailored audience – and the consumer for being conveniently presented with information that is relevant to them.

Provide Measurable Data

Display ads provide data that can help enhance your ads for future use. By gaining useful insights into your respondents reactions, you can monitor the success of your ad. From this data, you can see how many times people viewed or clicked your ad. You can even see if your visitor converted into a customer by making a purchase. 

By learning more about your ad’s performance, this helps you understand where you need to improve, if you need to adjust your budget or consider new audiences. This means your business can constantly evolve and better your practice.

Display Advertising: The Bad

With everything, there are good and bad sides. While there are plenty of benefits that come with display advertising, it is useful to be aware of the disadvantages so you can make an informed decision.

Lower Click-Through Rate

Click-through rates (CTR) relate to how many times people actually click on your ad. Typically, display ads are there to act as a visual, meaning while people may enjoy looking at them – they are less inclined to click. 

One way around this is by including a noticeable call to action (CTA). This means if someone is actively looking and is interested in your ad, if you provide them with a clear CTA, this will help hugely with the conversion journey.

Lower Conversion Rate

A low click-through rate can also have a knock-on effect with lower conversion rates. This relates to when a person purchases something at the end of their journey with your ad. Often, with it being difficult enough to get a person to click – getting them to buy is added pressure on top.

This also relates to people’s intentions. If a person is scrolling through a news website, they are not necessarily thinking about purchasing. Therefore they may not be ready to buy. Display ads are more suitable for long sales processes than for selling high volumes. 

Ad Avoidance and Blockers

While your impressions may be high, this metric does not guarantee that viewers actually paid attention to your ad. As people nowadays are programmed to automatically reject ads as we are exposed to so many so often – this ad avoidance culture is a major downside.

Ad blockers are also a display ad’s worst enemy. With people wanting a break from ads when they are working online or simply enjoying some downtime, plenty of people have ad blockers downloaded. This stops potential viewers seeing your ad and therefore halts the ad’s effectiveness. 

As we can see here after reviewing the pros and cons, there are certainly a lot more advantages associated with display advertising.

If you are curious about how to get started with display advertising, take a look at what you should consider first of all.

4 Things to Consider Before Setting Up a Display Ad

Maintaining best practice before publishing display ads
There are four main things to think about when creating display ads. (Image Credit: ProfileTree.com)

Before you embark on setting up your display ad, there are a number of things you should think about first. Without considering these vital aspects, you could risk making an ad that flops, as well as lose valuable budget money.

To ensure best practice is maintained, consider these top 4 things:

#1: Think About Your Goal

As a business owner or manager, you will know the importance of setting a goal before going forward with any important decisions. The same goes with display advertising. Without a clear intention, your ad will not succeed. By giving yourself something to aim towards – this will help you in the long-run.

Consider your digital marketing strategy – are you wanting to increase your online sales? Or boost brand awareness? This could be a huge determining factor before you proceed with display advertising.

#2: Who Do You Want to Target?

Before you start, it is essential that you consider who your target audience is, otherwise you will not know what websites to feature on and you will already be at a loss.

One way to consider your target market is by thinking of who your main customer is. Will they relate to the message you want to put out there? You can refine your audience even further by considering keywords, demographics, locations and interests. This will all help you categorise who will be seeing your ad and potentially taking action if they like what they see.

#3: Consider the Design

The design of a display ad is make or break. Too busy and it’ll put people off – too simple and it won’t stand out. This can apply to every element involved – the imagery or video, the copy, the colours – everything.

What’s important is making sure your design resonates with your brand. You want to catch people’s eye, but you also want them to recognise you. This is probably one of the tougher considerations to think about. But when you spend enough time trying to get it right, you will benefit in the long-run. 

#4: Set Your Budget

This is where your strategy comes in again. WIth display advertising, you decide on a budget and pay for results – like when people actually click on your ad to visit your website. 

Luckily, display advertising is quite flexible to suit a variety of budgets. However, you will want to make sure you get a return on investment for your design and copywriting efforts to make the ad in the first place. This is why each of these points go hand-in-hand to make display advertising work.

For information on how to action these steps plus more, check out our Ultimate Guide to Display Advertising.

If you would like more advice on display advertising, simply drop us a message. At ProfileTree, we are here to help businesses grow online. With our infinite knowledge of the digital world, we can help you make a start. We look forward to working with you!

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