Online advertisers, publishers and marketers needs to understand CTR (click-through rate) and how to use it to their advantage to maximize ad revenue. Below, the article offers a short guide on how and where to place ads on your site to improve a visitor’s click-through rate.
What is CTR?
CTR is the ratio of the number of views to the number of clicks on a specific ad; if your ad is seen 1000 times and is clicked 100 times, your CTR is 10%. It’s important to monitor your CTR, because a higher CTR translates directly to profits from ads.
In the eyes of ad providers, a higher CTR increases the value of your website (where the ads are displayed) to their network. A strong CTR means you have a high volume of visitors and perhaps an effective ad placement strategy; a win for you and ad networks.
How can you get a higher CTR?
1) Experiment: Before deciding where to place ads, you should do some tests to figure out what type and size of ads your visitors respond to the most. For instance, some statistics suggest that CTR in email campaigns can reach as high as 20% while display banners suffer the lowest CTR, averaging 0.25%.
Check out the template below for some general rules:
2) Switch: If you find that an ad is not working well, change its type, size, or place (if the ad platform offers you different types to choose from) and put it in a “hotter” spot. Contiually monitor the ad’s performance until you find the best fit.
3) Clean: Keep your page clean and avoid stuffing it with graphics and animations. The less web “junk” and flashy images there is, the higher the likelihood that your ad is going to be noticed and clicked on. Keep your page clean and functional so vistors don’t feel overloaded with images and popups.
4) Arrange: Place the ads as close to your content as possible. If you want your ad to be seen, place it next to the content or above it. To some visitors, an ad at the top of a page when you first open the site can be irritating. Placing an ad in a sidebar or directly following content might be a better idea, giving the visitor a last chance to click the ad before he or she exists the page.
Also consider using wide, horizontal ads (like common banners or leaderboards) instead of vertical ones (like the 120×600 Skyscraper). For most people, reading horizontally is easier than reading vertically, and you want to make it easier for the visitor to glimpse, read and hopefully click an ad. Vetical ads work better on some site designs and platforms, so again, experiment until you find what’s write for you.
5) Minimize: Use only important content; If a single page has lots of content, it’s going to be competing with your ads. You may find it enough to include only the post’s title, popular tags, and short content in addition to one or two social sharing buttons, rather than cluttering the page with lots of excessive social media widgets, “similar posts” boxes, category lists, archives, and an endless list of “websites I recommend”.