Web banner

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A web banner or banner ad is a form of advertising on the World Wide Web. This form of online advertising entails embedding an advertisement into a web page. It is intended to attract traffic to a website by linking to the website of the advertiser. The advertisement is constructed from an image (GIF, JPEG, PNG), JavaScript program or multimedia object employing technologies such as Java, Shockwave or Flash, often employing animation, sound, or video to maximize presence. Images are usually in a high-aspect ratio shape (i.e. either wide and short, or tall and narrow) hence the reference to banners. These images are usually placed on web pages that have interesting content, such as a newspaper article or an opinion piece. Affiliates earn money usually on a CPC (cost per click) basis, for every unique user click on the ad, the affiliate earns money.

File:Qxz-ad39.png
Typical web banner, sized 468×60 pixels.

The web banner is displayed when a web page that references the banner is loaded into a web browser. This event is known as an "impression". When the viewer clicks on the banner, the viewer is directed to the website advertised in the banner. This event is known as a "click through". In many cases, banners are delivered by a central ad server.

When the advertiser scans their logfiles and detects that a web user has visited the advertiser's site from the content site by clicking on the banner ad, the advertiser sends the content provider some small amount of money (usually around five to ten US cents). This payback system is often how the content provider is able to pay for the Internet access to supply the content in the first place. Usually though, advertisers use ad networks to serve their advertisements, resulting in a revshare system and higher quality ad placement.

Web banners function the same way as traditional advertisements are intended to function: notifying consumers of the product or service and presenting reasons why the consumer should choose the product in question, although web banners differ in that the results for advertisement campaigns may be monitored real-time and may be targeted to the viewer's interests. Behavior is often tracked through the use of a click tag.

Many web surfers regard these advertisements as highly annoying because they distract from a web page's actual content or waste bandwidth. (Of course, the purpose of the banner ad is to attract attention and many advertisers try to get attention to the advert by making them annoying. Without attracting attention it would provide no revenue for the advertiser or for the content provider.) Newer web browsers often include options to disable pop-ups or block images from selected websites. Another way of avoiding banners is to use a proxy server that blocks them, such as Privoxy.

Contents

History

The pioneer of online advertising was Prodigy, a company owned by IBM and Sears at the time. Prodigy used online advertising first to promote Sears products in the 1980s, and then other advertisers. Curiously, one of the advertisers on Prodigy in early 90s was AOL, one of Prodigy's competitors. Incidentally, Prodigy was first in online shopping, banking, stock trading as well. Prodigy was unable to capitalize on any of its first mover advantages, including online advertising.

The first clickable web ad (which later came to be known by the term "banner ad") was sold by Global Network Navigator (GNN) in 1993 to Heller, Ehrman, White and McAuliffe, a now defunct law firm with a Silicon Valley office.[citation needed] GNN was the first commercially supported web publication and one of the very first web sites ever.[citation needed]

HotWired was the first web site to sell banner ads in large quantities to a wide range of major corporate advertisers. Andrew Anker was HotWired's first CEO. Rick Boyce, a former media buyer with San Francisco advertising agency Hal Riney & Partners, spearheaded the sales effort for the company.[1] HotWired coined the term "banner ad" and was the first company to provide click through rate reports to its customers. The first web banner sold by HotWired was paid for by AT&T, and was put online on October 25, 1994[2]. Another source also credits Hotwired and October 1994, but has Coors' "Zima" campaign as the first web banner.[3]

In May 1994, Ken McCarthy mentored Boyce in his transition from traditional to online advertising, and first introduced the concept of a clickable/trackable ad. He stated that he believed that only a direct response model—in which the return on investment of individual ads was measured—would prove sustainable over the long run for online advertising.

In spite of this prediction, banner ads were valued and sold based on the number of impressions they generated. This approach to banner ad sales proved successful and provided the economic foundation for the web industry from the period of 1994 to 2000 until the market for banner ads "crashed" and there was a radical revaluation of their value.

The new online advertising model that emerged in the early years of the 21st century, introduced by GoTo.com (later Overture, then Yahoo and mass marketed by Google's AdWords program), relies heavily on tracking ad response rather than impressions.

Standard sizes

Ad sizes have been standardized to some extent by the IAB; they are:[4]

File:Standard web banner ad sizes.svg
IAB standard ad sizes. Note: This illustration is reduced in size. For actual sizes Click here.
Sizes in bold are part of the IAB's Universal Ad Package.
Name Width px Height px aspect ratio
Rectangles and Pop-Ups
Medium Rectangle 300 250 1.2
Square Pop-Up 250 250 1
Vertical Rectangle 240 400 1.67
Large Rectangle 336 280 1.2
Rectangle 180 150 1.2
3:1 Rectangle 300 100 3
Pop-Under 720 300 2.4
Banners and Buttons
Full banner 468 60 7.8
Half banner 234 60 3.9
Micro bar 88 31 2.84
Button 1 120 90 1.33
Button 2 120 60 2
Vertical banner 120 240 2
Square button 125 125 1
Leaderboard 728 90 8.09
Skyscrapers
Wide skyscraper 160 600 3.75
Skyscraper 120 600 5
Half page ad 300 600 2

References

  1. Reid, Robert H. (1997). Architects of the Web: 1,000 Days that Built the Future of Business. John Wiley & Sons. Chapter Seven: 'Hotwired - Publishing on the Web' (pp 300-308) ISBN 0471171875
  2. http://adland.tv/content/banner-ads-tenth-birthday "Banner ads tenth birthday"
  3. Chapman, Merrill R., In search of stupidity: over 20 years of high-tech marketing disasters (2nd Edition) , Apress, ISBN 1-59059-721-4
  4. "Ad Unit Guidelines". Interactive Advertising Bureau. http://www.iab.net/standards/adunits.asp. 

See also

bg:Банер (реклама) cs:Banner de:Werbebanner es:Banner eo:Reklambendo eu:Banner fr:Bannière publicitaire id:Spanduk web it:Banner he:באנר nl:Reclamebanner ja:バナー pl:Banner pt:Banner ru:Баннер fi:Bannerimainonta sv:Banner (reklam) th:เว็บแบนเนอร์ tr:Banner uk:Банер

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