What Types of Online Advertising Can I Use?

When it comes to online advertising, the landscape has shifted from the early days of the internet when the choice of advertising medium was limited to a big banner or a slightly smaller banner. While banners are still an essential part of the online advertising world, marketers today can choose from a much more comprehensive range of advertising types.

Knowing what kind of advertising will appeal more to your target audience is something your campaign testing will tell you, but here’s our primer on the various advertising types you can use for your next marketing campaign.

Display Ads

Display ads are the oldest form of online advertising. Image-based display ads can be static images, animated banners, or even video, and advertisers pay for their ad placements on third-party websites. Costs vary depending on the display ads’ placements and size, with more prominent placements on the Home page and high-traffic inner pages commanding a price premium.

The most common type of display ad is the banner ad. Banner ads can be static or animated. Animated banners today will typically be HTML5, as flash banners have been phased out in recent years. While banner ad CTRs (Click Through Rates) have seen a steady fall over the last few years, giving rise to the term “banner blindness,” banners can still be very effective for the right product and target group.

Another type of display ad is pop ads. These can be pop-ups or pop-unders which open in a separate browser window either on top of or under the webpage where these are displayed. These ads open in new browser windows, so they are hard to miss. This, however, makes them a more intrusive type of advertising with subsequently lower CTRs. Pop ads are available at extremely low rates, so they are definitely worth testing in your campaigns.

Floating ads are another type of display ad available to marketers today. These banners or interstitials display over the website’s content and usually disappear after a few seconds, revealing the content below them. In some cases, floating ads stay visible until the visitors click to close them.

Wallpaper ads are another type of display ad worth considering for your next online campaign. Wallpaper ads display as a website background, and while they are visible for as long as a visitor is on the page, they do not cover or interfere with the content in any way and are seen as less intrusive.

Pay Per Click

Pay Per Click, is as the name implies, a type of advertising where you only pay when someone clicks on your ad. The grand-daddy of PPC is, of course, Google AdWords. Google ads display at the top and bottom of search engine result pages and are triggered by the particular keywords you’re targeting. Choose a specific keyword, “best forex broker,” for example. Whenever anyone in your target geo searches on that term, you take part in an auction with other advertisers bidding on the same keyword phrase. The advertiser with the highest bid gets the impression. All this happens in milliseconds and is entirely transparent to users.

Social Media Ads

With the sheer number of users present on social media sites at any given moment, it was only ever a matter of time before these social media platforms started offering paid ads. Paid social media advertising comes in various formats, mirroring most of the ad types we’ve already mentioned. According to the latest statistics from marketing portals, the most popular form of social media advertising is video ads. This trend follows the broader trends in the world of online advertising.

Native Ads

Native ads have seen a considerable surge in popularity over the last few years, with these types of ads seen as non-intrusive and highly converting. Designed to blend in with the theme and layout of the website these appear on, native ads mimic the content website visitors are already engaged with.

Native Ads usually appear as “recommended stories” or “sponsored stories,” further adding to the non-intrusive look and feel.


Remarketing refers to the practice of using cookies to tag your website visitors. This tag can then be used to display highly relevant ads to them as they browse other websites.

Remarketing is a highly effective tactic as it can reinforce the initial message your visitors are engaged with and can lead to an impressive conversion number.

So which ad type should you choose for your marketing campaigns?

There’s no such thing as “one size fits all” when it comes to advertising. Given the range of advertising types available to you, testing is the only way to get the answer. Run some test campaigns and let the results give you the answer. The best ad format is the one that makes the most money!

Need some help with your online advertising? Get in touch with us today, and we’ll walk you through all the ins and outs of digital marketing.

Categories: Affiliate Marketing

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