The web being a communications tool of its own kind and definitely unrivalled by any other medium has unlimited potentialities to entrepreneurs with a sharp business acumen. The superior benefits are obvious without delving much into them here, chief among them being the unlimited global reach, and the real-time access by the global audience once an a item is uploaded. But one area that really holds the key between failure and success of an internet enterprise has to be online advertising.
Just like conventional advertising, web-based advertising is meant to boost sales by the promotion of a brand or product, and can be easily termed as a call to action. Online advertising takes different forms and it can include audio and visual elements. In this category are email marketing, web articles and blogs, promotional video trailers and website banners. All these require very little out-pocket expenditure as long as you understand the intricacies of online business. But one form of free web advertising that is growing increasingly popular is the usage of free website banners.
Website banners have been around as long as the internet itself. They have been used over the years to promote websites, products or services. But for some reason their effectiveness had taken a nose dive and it was slowly being confined to the museum of technological obsoleteness. But with a growing number of portals hosting free web ads, banners are back with a bang. But they are still a little way off as recent studies show that not many people actually bother on clicking on the banners.
This means that when you are designing a banner for your website as a means of taking advantage of free web ads, you have to be a cut above the rest and it should be able to go against the grain and actually visitors to the page where it is displayed to click on it. This means in terms of relevance and vital information, the free website banners should be able to pass their message effectively. From the very start, get the basics of the banner right in terms of size, layout and visual appeal. And be sure to use every trick in the rule book to maximize hits and clicks on your banner.
The most popular types of ads in free website advertising measure 468×60. It is however not a requirement as some can be half that size, others can be vertical with different measurements altogether. What matters is where the banner is placed in a page as well as its ability to catch and hold a potential visitor’s attention. Some people get it completely wrong when they put too much graphics and illegible text thinking it is attractive. It is not. The banner should have easy to read legible text and simple to understand as well.
And the banners should be laced with messages that really arouse curiosity with catchy clichés but realistic of course. Clarion calls like ‘click here to unlock unlimited potentialities’ can be very effective. Apart from the free advertising websites that one can host and display free website banners, the most other common way of displaying the banners is by way of exchanges with other websites. What happens is that as the owner of the banner you display it in a related website and provide a link to your page, and then the person who owns the website in which you have placed it places their own banner in your website with links to their websites. This symbiotic relationship helps both entrepreneurs to generate traffic from diversified sources without spending a dime as the exchanges are free.
Free banner advertising can also take the form of flash animations which have an edge over still banners because movements tend to rivet the eye’s attention and arouse curiosity. Animated ads may be placed in strategic areas in the web advertising pages and even when looking at a different section of the page, the incessant movement will usually lead to concentration being trained on the banner. If the banner is a still one with only graphics and text, you can achieve the attention-grabbing aspect by using a combination of colors that will work well for that purpose. Color like red, green purple or orange are good attention-grabbers and are therefore ideal.
There are several ways of creating website banners; you can either make the banner yourself using available online tools, you can use online generic templates of which you just have to customize to suit your purpose, or you can outsource to professional in that field of which they are many. Many of these are without charge although there are those that will require a charge before you can download and customize them.
With most corporate companies increasingly going slow on website banners due to the lack of clicks by online visitors, many website advertising proprietors are offering free hosting and then cashing in on the advertisements by establish companies like Google, Yahoo or MSN. The person who stands to gain is the entrepreneur who cannot afford much money to advertise to great lengths like the corporate companies and to whom free web advertising come as a reprieve.
Apart from the layout and the color and the design and the placement on a webpage, web banners can be designed as dialog boxes, submit buttons, scroll bars or blue-colored hyperlinks. But in the usage of such tools, be cautious not to give the impression of a deceitful enterprise. Remember the banner in advertising takes the place of your business as it is meant to lead people to your business. If people have a wrong impression of your banner, your brand is misrepresented and people will tend to keep away.
In web-based advertising, the undoing has been that most advertisers take it casually and do not put much professional emphasis on it as they would on a conventional campaign and this in the long run is bad for business. Online advertising whether free or paid for should be taken very serious as it is the emerging battleground for modern marketing.