5 Tips for Improving Ad Performance

March 26, 2019

5 Tips for Improving Ad Performance and Ad Placement

Are banner ads still effective?

When banner ads were first introduced in 1994, they garnered remarkable 44% CTRs, and gave birth to the digital advertising landscape as we know it.  Since then, this landscape has evolved and changed significantly.  While banner ad impressions have seen great growth, the high CTRs have gone in the opposite direction.  After working with hundreds of publishers over the past several years, we have put together a short list of quick tips to improve your ad performance and ad placement.

Where has the CTR gone?

Nowadays, CTRs average less than 1%, thanks to “Banner Blindness.”  Readers have seen so many banners and advertisements, and are so savvy about what they are looking for when they go to a website, that they consciously, or unconsciously, ignore the banner ads.  They don’t see them; they don’t click.  And since CTR rates strongly correlate to CPM, that is not a good thing.

To banner or not to banner?

The good news is that despite the blindness, banner ads are here to stay, and digital ad spend is slated to surpass traditional ad spend this year, growing to nearly double by 2021.


What’s a Publisher to do?

Get creative. Think about your reader’s behavior on the page and plan your content and ads accordingly.  Here are 5 tips for improving banner performance:

  • Placement, placement, placement:

As demonstrated in a  study conducted by Infolinks, placement is critical.  Place ads in non-traditional, memorable, locations, and try using multiple sizes per placement to compare performance.


  • Don’t over clutter:

Readers are annoyed by over-bannering, and they turn up their “banner blinders.”  Keep it clean, simple and non disruptive to user experience on page.

  • Go native:

The more the ads on your site blend into the content of your site (similar fonts, colors, etc), they more visible they will be.  You can customize your templates, and work with the growing number of native ads networks that will do the same for you.

  • Make it sticky:

Ads which stay in place as a reader goes through your pages are more visible, and thus more clicked.  Consider adhesion footers, side bar stickies, and skins.

  • Test, track, repeat:

As you move your placements around, change sizes, fonts, etc, watch the changes in CTR, viewability, and impact on other placements.  

We’re here to help.  Contact us today for a free site audit and we’d be happy to advise on your placements and their performance in order to maximize your ad revenues.




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