Banner Advertising Basics Archive

How banner advertising works

How banner advertising works? View the presentation below and or read the full article!

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1. The advertiser.

A company wants to promote itself or its product, a nonprofit organization wishes to promote its program, a political candidate wants to promote her image etc. These are all common examples of advertisers.

To loop or not to loop, that is the question!

Looping banners are flash or GIF banners that play their animation over and over again. They are pretty common in the online advertising industry because they continuously tell their story and draw the users’ attention.

However the IAB guidelines recommend that a banner’s animation length should be of maximum 15 seconds, including multiple loops.

So the question is whether you should use looping or not.

Well the answer is – again – it depends.

The ClickTAG variable

The ClickTAG variable is a tracking tool assigned by a publisher or ad serving network to a flash banner ad. It is also used to link the flash banner to a destination URL.

Okay. But why using ClickTAG when a link – the destination URL – can be hard coded into the SWF itself? Well, that’s because hard coding the click-through URL into the SWF would make click counting impossible. And that would kill the CPC advertising system – the popular system Google uses too.

Also, the ClickTAG variable has many other advantages:

1. Both sides – advertiser and publisher – can count clicks-throughs
2. You don’t need to modify the SWF itself if you need to change the destination URL
3. The destination URL can be easily checked without the help of a flash programmer

ClickTAG swf embed code generator

The introduction of SWF export feature has pleased many of you. However, odds are that a big part of you haven’t ever worked with SWF files before. And the biggest challenge is to embed them properly into a website.

That’s why we made this easy to use embed code generator that will help you compile the perfect* swf embed code:

Download the SWF embed code generator here.

Quick tutorial

  1. SWF path – Paste here the SWF file’s location.
  2. Width & Height – Set the banner’s dimensions (e.g. 300×250)
  3. Color – Set the background color that will apear while the SWF is loading
  4. ClickTAG – Fill the the web address that will open on click (leave blank if you don’t want your banner to link anywhere)
  5. ClickTarget – Leave _blank if you want the URL to open in another tab/window or choose _self if you want the URL to open in the same tab/window.
  6. Copy the code and embed it anywhere you want.

* The ClickTAG swf embed code generator is compliant with the HTML W3 standard for SWF embed code, including the IAB ClickTAG standard, Flash ActionScript 1, ActionScript 2 and ActionScript 3.

Tips for effective banner placement

So, you think it’s time to advertise online. You never did that before. But you definitely want to try your luck with some banner ads.


But let’s forget a little about luck and see a practical way in which you can squeeze the maximum out of your online campaign.

In order for you to be able to choose the very best places where to advertise online, you need to answer the following questions:

1. Who is most likely that will buy my stuff? This question is crucial and the answer is not always so obvious, so take your time, do little research and draw a typical buyer’s profile. That’s your target.


That’s an interesting question for the experienced online marketers and a rather confusing one for the Internet novices who want to make an incursion into the world of online advertising.

But let’s give up acronyms and baffling jargon and let’s see what is all about. Advertising on the Internet can be purchased in various systems, the most common being CPM (Cost Per Mille), CPC (Cost Per Click) and CPA (Cost Per Action).

CPM alias Cost Per Mille alias Cost Per Thousand impressions

Represents how much it will cost for an ad to be shown a thousand times. For example, a website could sell banner ads for $50 CPM. CPM is used not only in online advertising, but also in television, radio and in print.

The CPM system favours only the publishers because they’ll receive revenue regardless of the campaign’s success. Also, a thousand impressions doesn’t guarantee that the ad will be actually seen 1000 times; the system only guarantees that it will be displayed 1000 times for a certain amount of money. The system’s most important advantage for advertisers is the fact that they can easily compare media prices.

These facts made many of the advertisers move towards CPC and CPA.

How to optimize your banners for the web

As we’ve seen in the article called “Maximum recommended banner file size”, there are some restrictions regarding the banner ads’ file size. These restrictions are set by publishers in order to keep their pages decently quick to download. They are encompassed in an IAB standard.

Since it’s very easy to go over the line with the banner’s file size, let’s see some simple and quick ways to optimize your banner, whether it’s going to be a static or a flash animated one:

1. Crop or resize your images. If you are going to make a 300×250 px banner don’t load a picture of say 2400×1554 px. Use the BannerSnack image editor to do that (just click Edit image) or use a computer program like Photoshop, Paint, Photo-Paint, IrfanView etc. to crop off the area of the picture you need.

11 Worst Placed Ads EVER

You know, ad placement is very important. Especially online. Good marketers try to increase the click through rate by placing their ads on well targeted websites. They try to make their ads appear on topic and in context in order to make them relevant.

Sometimes they manage to do it right. Sometimes they fail. FAIL!

But it’s not their fault. It’s fate. The odds. Misfortune. Irony. Laughable coincidences.

View the 11 Worst Placed Ads EVER: