Designing Your Site for Advertisers

Today, the most desirable web sites are those that not only generate high traffic but also make campaigns easy to buy. A well-designed web site meets generally accepted advertising standards. When these standards are incorporated into site development, publishers will find they have the proper tools to attract national advertisers.

Advertisers need simple, well-designed sites that showcase their ads. To meet this need, publishers must create well-trafficked web pages that can easily integrate sponsorships. The location and size of a site’s advertising space is crucial to generating revenue.

Many advertisers make 80 percent of all their creative units as a full banner (468×60 pixels per inch). This full banner is an IAB/CASIEstandard size and generally is placed at the top of every web page. When advertisers place insertion orders, most will demand that their banner ad be placed at the top of the page.

Another benefit of the full banner is excess impressions may be sold to remnant advertising programs that commonly use this size. By designing space for a full banner on the top of your pages, publishers gain the ability to incorporate remnant advertising programs into their revenue streams, allowing them to sell space that might otherwise be left untenanted.

Web sites need to be designed to support sponsorship and tenancy programs as well as banner ads. These options offer excellent sources of revenue and play an integral part in creating high-value advertising packages.

The most widely used sizes are 120×90 and 120×240 buttons. These buttons can be used in two ways: The 120×90 button is excellent for tenancy programs on a section or in a site sponsorship program where the advertising message is fixed to the page. The 120×240 button (a sidebar or fifth-column ad) enables the advertiser to increase his visibility on the web page while creating more real estate in which to promote a product or service or expand brand recognition.

Another advertising design technique, one that is sold as a section or title sponsorship, is the integration of the advertisers message or logo right into the page design. An advertiser can sponsor a section by replacing the actual web site header with a message that could read, “[Business] brought to you by X,” or the advertiser logo could be placed near the top of the page and read, “[Feature] presented by X.” (Take a look at some of the content on ClickZ for a real-world example of how this might be done.)

Although this type of design takes some extra effort on the part of the publisher, it is highly desirable for advertisers because it creates a sense of ownership and increased brand awareness and is therefore a strong selling point.

Designing to place advertising in a “gang” of 88×31 buttons is also an interesting and beneficial technique. A gang creates a special environment on a web page that appears to give consumers a choice among similar or related products.

Publishers can enhance their revenue stream by designing their site for advertisers. A site should be designed to offer an advertiser a clean environment that will showcase their ad, make it easy for them to advertise using their in-house creative team, and allow their message to be quickly and efficiently delivered.

Publishers can increase their advertising revenue by designing for the IAB standard ad sizes, positioning the ad spaces correctly on the page, leaving multiple advertising spaces on the page, and being able to host diverse types of campaigns.

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