How to do Display Advertising on a Website?

display advertising

Creating good advertisements is one of the key factors that determines the success of digital marketing campaigns. While the increasing popularity of digital marketing makes the area much more accessible than before, it also increases the competition inside the business model. Successful digital marketing campaigns supported by carefully designed advertisements are the way to survive inside this competition.

A form of advertisement that has been widely used since the beginning of digital marketing is display ads. Display ads are still the most common form of digital advertisements that a customer comes across on the web but using them effectively has become more important than ever with the emergence of new advertising forms. The basics of display ads are fairly simple, hence the abundance of content creators and advertisers using them, however using them effectively requires a good knowledge of how the dynamics work. Here’s a comprehensive guide on display ads and how to use them effectively to maximize the benefits of your digital marketing campaign.

What are Display Ads?

Display ads are the most common advertisements that every user comes across on the web. While they may come in different forms, they are usually placed in between or next to the content, usually enhanced by using vivid images and instructive texts. The main objective of display advertising is to attract the audience’s attention, direct them to the advertiser’s website and encourage them to take the desired action.

The specific steps of how display advertising works is relatively simple. Advertiser can reach to thousands of websites through display advertising networks such as Google Display Network and their ads are automatically placed on various websites. Advertisers are able to define their target audience to the system by entering search keywords that they want their advertisements to match with. This way, the advertisements appear to people who have a higher chance of being interested in them.

Once the advertisements appear on the website, the customer has two options: To ignore or to click on the advertisement. If the customer decides to interact with the advertisement, they are directed to a page called the landing page which is the advertiser’s website specifically designed to encourage the customer to take the desired action which can be filling a form, downloading an app, or making a purchase.

Of course, the success of this process heavily depends on the advertisements’ effectiveness and the overall marketing strategy behind advertiser’s campaign. Many factors contribute to an effective marketing strategy when using display advertisements, but before getting into them, here’s a guide of different forms of display advertisements.

Types of Display Advertising

Banner Ads

Banner ads are the most traditional way of display advertising. They are the image and text based advertisements that are usually kept very simple and serve one primary purpose which is to direct the customer to the landing website. They usually appear on the sides or in the middle of the websites and try to grab the audience’s attention by contrasting with the content of the website with vivid images and colors.

Some kinds of banner ads can change depending on the target customer’s online habits. In this method, advertisers create a number of variations of the same advertisement, the only difference being the primary medium of communication. For example, if a given customer is more likely to respond to image based advertisement, the ad network will present the customer the image based alternative of the advertisement. This type of banner ads are called responsive ads.

Interstitial Ads

Interstitial ads are the advertisements that appear in between two webpages. They appear in full size on the browser when a customer is being directed from a website to another. While banner ads can easily be ignored, interstitial ads almost guarantees that the advertisement will be seen by the customer. Of course, the fact that it is seen doesn’t really guarantee that the customer will interact with it, as it is very easy to skip interstitial ads within seconds. However, they have a much higher chance of attracting the customer compared to banner ads because of their size advantage.

Rich Media Ads

Rich media ads combine multiple media components to maximize the chance of the customer interacting with the ad. Rich media ads appear like banner ads on websites, but they also feature an interactive component. The interactive component can be a simple poll question, a form to fill, a mini quiz or a mini game. These types of components encourage the audience to interact with the ad and makes them more likely to complete the desired action. It is also a good way to use creativity, as the interactive component gives the advertiser more opportunities to design a more diverse ad that would stand out from the competition.

Video Ads

Video ads have become popular with platforms like YouTube and Instagram becoming popular. In fact, they resemble traditional TV commercials, however these platforms give you many more opportunities to break the norms of traditional advertising. Video ads allow advertisers to connect with their audience on a more personal and intimate level which can be very well worth investing in as it may maximize the chances of the customer interacting with your advertisement.

Tips for Using Display Ads

1. Choose Your Target Audience Carefully

Choosing the correct the target audience can make or break a digital advertising campaign. If you manage to reach out to the correct audience, you will increase your chances of running a profitable marketing campaign significantly. With display ad networks, the best way to do is defining keywords that you want your advertisements to match with. While this process seems complicated, it gets simpler once you get the logic behind it.

With the help of some market research, it is possible to determine the customers that would be the most interested in your advertisements. Look into what else customers that would buy your products are interested in. For example, if you are advertising for an airline, it would make sense for your advertisements to appear for the search keywords like “book”, “flight” and “holiday”. Of course, this process has many nuances, but the logic behind it is finding interest areas that your customers would be interested in and directing your advertisements accordingly.

2. Use Creative Ads

With display ads becoming more and more popular, this has become very important. Nowadays, display advertising is so widespread that people have become desensitized against them. That’s why it is very important to be able to create advertisements that would stand out and grab attention.

There are many ways that you could make your ads more effective. One of the most important things to consider is keeping the ads as simple as possible, as too many stimuli is usually distracting for the customer. The vocabulary used in the ad is another important factor. Successful ads usually prefer compelling words that call customers to take action and they also pay attention to how those words are presented visually. Using simple but effective fonts is another way to grab the customer’s attention.

3. Functional Landing Pages

This is very important. Making your customer click to your advertisement is unfortunately less than half of the job. It is important that your customers clicks on the ad, but it’s crucial that they take the desired action. A confusing landing page your customer is directed to after they click on your ad, make it very unlikely that they will take the desired action. Instead, try to keep your landing pages simple and focused on the desired action. This will make the customer’s job much easier once they reach the landing page and increase their chances of actually taking the desired action.

4. Gather Feedback and Adapt

Successful advertisers learn from their mistakes and improve their advertisements multiple times to reach a desired outcome. It is important being able to gather data about what works and what doesn’t and improve your advertising model accordingly. In order to do this, however, you need to know how to use the necessary tools. Here’s a guide to help you measure data and audience feedback when you are using display advertising:

How to Measure Display Ads

Measuring the success of display ads is important, as it is a process that will shape your advertising strategy and revision process. There are four main tools that you can use to determine how your strategy is working: impressions, reach, click through rate and conversion rate.

Impressions is the number of times that your ad appears to a user. Every time your ad appears on a page that a customer is surfing, it counts as one impression. While impressions data is important to determine if your ad has enough visibility, it doesn’t tell you much about how your audience is interacting with the ad.

Reach is the number of unique users that see your advertisement. This metric is important to see how wide your audience is and if you are reaching the right demographic, but much like impressions it doesn’t tell you much about audience interaction.
Click Through Rate (CTR) is one of the metrics that is about interaction. As the name suggests, it is the number of customers clicking on the ad per impression. So, if 4 users click on your ad after 1000 impressions, that is a CTR of 0.4%. CTR can tell you how attention grabbing your ad is but doesn’t fully reveal if it is good at serving its purpose as it doesn’t account for the desired action.
Conversion Rate is the number of users that take the desired action among the users who reach to your landing page. This metric is often considered the most important, as it gives you an idea of the overall effectiveness of your advertising strategy.

All these metrics are important to determine which areas of your advertising model needs improvements. At the end of the day, the metrics that will give you clear picture seems like a combination of your CTR and conversion rate, but you can use all these metrics to your advantage if you are careful about your revisions.

Pros and Cons of Display Advertising

Display advertising is still most popular way of digital marketing and considering its convenience it will remain that way for some time. With display advertising, you can reach to any customer who is using a web search engine (pretty much everyone), you can create stylized advertising campaigns that define your brand image and the maximum amount of exposure. These are all reasons that digital marketers prefer display advertising.

The biggest downside of display advertising, however, is a concept called banner blindness. Banner ads have become so popular in the last decade that people ignore them most of the time, almost subconsciously. Moreover, with the popularization of display advertising ad blockers have become popular too. While some websites counteract ad blockers, it is still very possible to surf most of the net without interruption with an active ad blocker. That’s why, the chances of users not seeing your display ads increase every day. This is the biggest threat display advertising is facing nowadays and it is the reason some marketers have started look for alternative ways like native ads.

FAQs – Frequently Asked Questions about Display Marketing

Question: What are display marketing channels?

Answer: Display marketing channels include online advertising on websites, apps, and social media platforms. Advertisers can target potential customers with ads that are relevant to their interests, demographics, and location.Some display marketing channels are more effective for certain types of businesses than others. For example, if you’re selling a physical product, you might want to focus on online channels that allow you to showcase your product, like a website or an e-commerce platform. If you’re selling a service, you might want to focus on online channels that allow you to reach your target market, like a blog or a social media platform.To find the right display marketing channels for your business, start by identifying your goals and objectives. Then, research the different options and choose the ones that will help you achieve your goals. Experiment with different combinations of channels and track your results to see what works best for your business.

Question: How do I display ads on my website?

Asnwer: 1. Choose where you want to place your ad. 2. Pick an ad format that will work well on your website. 3. Get the code for your ad from your chosen ad network. 4. Paste the code into your website’s code. 5. Save your changes and view your website to make sure the ad is appearing where you want it to.


Display advertising is still the most popular form of digital marketing. It is popular because it is convenient to use and good at reaching wide audiences with a well-established system. While display advertising has many advantages due to its convenience and popularity, people have become more and more desensitized to it with passing years. However, the practical use of display advertising almost guarantees that it will be around for some more time which means that it is a very useful tool to learn for digital marketers.