Display Advertising 101

I think in the world of digital marketing, it is easy to assume that everyone knows everything about everything! But very often you just want to ask the simple questions – if you feel like this about display advertising, this one is for you. It doesn’t include the complexities, just the basics: hope you enjoy!

What is Display Advertising?

Display advertising is a way to get some representation for your campaign onto a targeted website. There are a number of options in terms of the advert size, location and format. There is also a wide variety of websites where your advert can be displayed. Different types of adverts include MPU (300 pixels x 250 pixels), Leaderboard (728 x 90) and Skyscraper (160 x 600)

There are two ways to place a display advert:

  • Google Display Network – this is a network of millions of websites who sell their space via Google. The Google Display Network is accessed via Google Adwords and you are able to use keywords to target the websites where your advert will appear. You can also target specific websites which are part of the network.
  • Direct with website – many websites sell space on their website directly. You can contact these websites and negotiate directly with them.

You can use a non-moving image which will normally be in a ‘png’ or ‘jpeg’ format, or a moving image such as a ‘gif’ format. This will depend on your budget, designer and website (not all websites can accommodate gif images).

Display advertising is good for:

  • Raising awareness
  • Using eye-catching imagery for your campaign
  • Using well targeted websites to promote your campaign

Display advertising is bad for:

  • Driving a response from an audience – display adverts have a low click through rate
  • Displaying complex information – fewer words means a more effective advert

How to Measure Display Advertising:

  • Clicks – the number of times that someone clicks on your advert
  • Impressions – the number of times that your advert is displayed
  • Click Through Rate – the number of clicks divided by the number of impressions
  • Cost per Click – the amount that you have paid per click

Display Advertising Tips

  • It is likely that you will be charged not by the click, but a cost per 1,000 views, known as Cost per Mille or CPM – consider this when planning your budget
  • Spend time researching which website is best to advertise on – where do the audience who you want to speak to spend their time online?
  • Add a tracking code to your URL via Google Custom URL Builder to track traffic from your advert
  • Display advertising should be used to raise awareness, not necessarily to drive enquiries or action from the user