Banners are not a thing of the past, as many web designers and owners think of them, for proof, look at Google Adwords (Google Display/Content). If you are only using content, and no banners to advertise, you’re losing out on some pretty hefty profits.
Competition for Adwords is astronomical, but competition for banners (also known as image ads), are still relatively low. Those around in the nineties should recognize how great of an open market opportunity, banners are. Banners need to stop getting a bum rap, and more designers should be using them in advertising campaigns. Banners are easy and tend to have higher conversion rates.
If you offer a product or service of value, a banner is a great way to advertise. Here we will discuss how to create a banner that converts.
Steps to Creating a Winning Banner
• You are not trying to win an artistic award. You are trying to make sales. Do not be concerned with creating a work of art, focus more on the sales aspect. Your banner does not have to be beautiful in order to work.
• The text in a banner needs to be of the same quality as a plain text ad would be. The headline is the most important part. If you don’t have a good headline, you don’t have a good banner. Answer the usual questions, what is the product/service? Why you are offering it? How can people get it? What will they get out of purchasing it? Make sure it is clear and concise, and includes a specific call to action.
• Make sure that your typography is appropriate. Is it easy to read? Is the font clear? Does it stand out from the background?
• For your graphics, use an image that ties into what you are selling, so that the viewer can make a connection quickly, don’t have a picture of a beach house, if you are selling a ski package. Photographs that work best are ones that are attractive and pleasing to look at. Cute, furry animals are always a big hit. Eye contact too, is an attention getter. If you use a human or an animal make sure they are facing the viewer.
• Have a thin frame around your picture. Don’t make it the center of attention, but people are used to seeing images within a frame.
• Choose your colors wisely. Know your target audience. Each color has a psychological effect, and colors mean different things in different cultures. Two colors that work well with banners are the colors blue and orange. Blue creates a feeling of safety. Orange is second to red in attention getting, though orange does carry the negative effects that red does.
• People are oblivious to banners. To get over that hump you need to make your banner stand out. Oddly enough, you can do this by making it blend in with the rest of the web page. The human eye won’t recognize it as a banner, so it will see it. Alternatively, you can use something that stands out, like a cute kitten staring into the camera.