Banner ads had been used for years especially during the time when the internet was still new. There are various types of banner ads used to market a particular product or service. Some are basic ones with just a line of text and then links of different kinds. Some use animation and drop down boxes to view ads. But as everything evolved, banner ads seemed to decline in the recent years.

If we really look into it, banner ads are effective and inexpensive ways to expose business and services. Creativity is also important in order to get the attention of the users. That is why designers need to consider some important things for effective banner ads.

1. Visual impact.

Visual impact

An effective banner will always start with how it looks. You should be able to choose the right colors that can attract the eyes. Choose font styles that are not too fancy and readable. You should also consider the colors of the text. Also, use large text for your call to action and smaller ones for the contents. Make sure your banner has a touch of creativity but still looks simple. Simpler banners are more effective.

2. Choose a good call to action.

 good call to action

In making your banner, you need to choose the right words that could give an immediate message and sense of urgency to the audience. It should also attract the users in a way that their attention could be diverted towards the banner even if they are reading something in the website. You may use the most common phrase “Click Here”. Many people could immediately click on your banner due to curiosity as to what will happen upon clicking. You could also use the phrases Press Now, Enter Here, Try This, This is Your Last Chance and many others. These words are effective in getting the interest of the users.

3. Choose attention-grabbing images and sounds.

attention-grabbing images and sounds

Use an image that will surely get the attention of the users. The image depends on you and the type of product or service you will be advertising. Use the appropriate image that could get the interest of the users. You may also include a sound like a drum roll or a music hit or whatever. The important thing there is, you should catch their attention.

4. Make smaller but wider ads.

Make smaller but wider ads

Make small sized banners under 10k-15k bytes so that it will download easily. And then use wider banners with 468 or 500 pixels wide. Wider banners are more effective for it could easily be seen and you have enough space for your design. Smaller banners download easily hence the user doesn’t need to wait for a long time before he could see the ads.

5. Encourage audience participation.

Encourage audience participation

You can also invite your audience to be involved in some activity in your ads. It could be a giveaway, a game, a quiz or whatever. But do not make it so complicated. Simple games are found to have higher click rates. Do not make it too long, too for it could bore the user and they might not continue with it. Remember that users do not usually spend a long time in a website especially on banner ads.

6. Offer free stuff.

Offer free stuff

Everyone loves anything that is free. This will surely work if you offer freebies. Give them free downloads for wall papers, screen savers and many others. Use your creativity in choosing what kind of free items you would like to give your users. This will surely bring in lots of responses. Even more than what you expected.

7. Do not include brand names.

Do not include brand names

In your banner ads, do not include the brand name or the company name. Allow them to discover what that is by the time they have clicked on the ad. If you include your brand name, there is a tendency that the user will no longer click on it for they assume that they know everything about the brand already. But if you do not mention the brand name in the ad, they will be curios if what is being offered is better than the brand they already know. Offer quality information to the clients. This is another way of arising curiosity from the users.

8. Use relevant keywords to target your market.

relevant keywords to target your market

For sure, you have a target audience for your banner ads. To do that, attach your banner to relevant keywords for an increased chance of being located through search engine. Consider sponsoring keywords and phrases for different search engines. For example, you would like to promote your website for business cards; you could enable users to easily find you every time someone enters the word “business”.

9. Animated banners.

Animated banners

Movement in ads could get more attention than those which aren’t. If you use animated ads with a good message and design, it will surely grab the user’s attention. But make sure that it doesn’t take too long to load or else your prospect costumer will move on to other sites without even clicking on your ads. It is said that animated ads generate more clicks. The disadvantage of animated ads is that some websites do not accept animated ads and they usually load longer.

10. Choose a strategic location.

strategic location

Since your primary aim is to have your banner ad noticed, you need to look for a location where in the user could immediately see it. It would be wise to place it above the fold. Most people place it at the top or at the left side. Actually, wherever you place it, as long as it looks really attractive, the users will still notice it.

11. Use different banners.

Use different banners

A user will no longer click on an ad which he has seen before. So it is wise to use different banners in various sites. Change your banners from time to time, too. Through this, you will still have clicks from users and you could also determine which one is more effective for it is receiving more responses. So, design various banners and use them in various websites. This will keep you going for a long time.

Banner ads truly work and the simpler ones are more effective. Static banners with good call to actions and good content easily gets the attention of the users. Indeed, using banner ads is one way to generate traffic for your website. Why don’t you try making a banner ad in promoting your websites?

Kareen Liez

About the author: A Civil Engineer who has a construction business and a youth volunteer for a civic organization. She also contributes for a local newspaper due to her unwavering passion to write.


  1. I thought all of those ad images are real ads, lol! Nice read though.

  2. In my opinion you have to use different banners so that users do not get bored. And I guess banners that say “click here”, “you won something”, or interact with the user in some way are the most effective 🙂

  3. Bunch of thanks for sharing these wonderful post. I really wondered while seeing the banner ads.

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