Is Banner Advertising Dead?

This question has long been in debate. After an initial boom for banner ads in the late 90’s and early 2000’s there are plenty of statistics that prove that banner ads may not be relevant anymore…but is it true? Let’s present the arguments.

Why banner ads are a thing of the past:

  1. They are an annoyance: it is quite possible that if I were to ask you what comes to mind when you think of a banner ad, you may describe to me those glaring, flash rectangular ads at the top of a page that are distracting you from what you really want to see, the content you searched for. Many people have remained with the fixated idea that banner ads are a disturbance and therefore to be ignored entirely.
  2. Banner Blindness: Banner blindness is a phenomenon that refers to users conscious or unconscious pattern of ignoring web banners. Try to recall the last banner ad you saw, you may not be able to and it’s exactly because of this. Banner ads annoyed us so much we began to shut them out directly.
  3. Cellular Technology: Another argument for when banner advertising may be obsolete is cell phones. Banner blindness is particularly high on mobile phones and given that these ads live more naturally on the web

Why banner ads are still relevant:

  1. Easy to Measure Effectiveness: Banner ads are fundamentally easy to manage. It’s effectiveness can be easily measured via click-through rates that show what percentage of users are clicking through, therefore measuring what works and what doesn’t and making adjustments.
  2. Native Advertising: Banner advertising is still relevant because it’s evolving. Banner ad placement is now more subtle than it was before and can be found within the editorial content. This is exactly where your eyes are looking as you consume content. The company Infolinks has found that native banner ads are viewed 47% more quickly and 451% more people than banner ads.
  3. Graphic Content is King: In such an image-heavy digital world, viewers are still more attracted to a smartly designed graphic or video than to text only. 70% of internet consumers would rather learn about a company or a product through content rather than traditional advertising. This makes the previous point of native advertising especially attractive.

In conclusion, our opinion is that banner advertising isn’t dead. It is alive and well, and like any part of a rapidly changing digital market it, what it needs is to adapt and change in order to thrive.

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