Myth: All ad units on a page should have the same color combination

By March 24th, 2008

If you’ve realized how important it is to test your site’s ads for color and position and have tested to get optimal color(s) for your ad units, you might be tempted to using the winning combination for all the ad units on the page.

Unfortunately, doing so doesn’t necessarily lead to an optimum result.

A test we ran on HubPages, a text-heavy site with a white background, leads to excellent conversions for a white background and white border for all 4 ad units tested on a page.

However, forĀ 2 of the 4 zones, even better performance was afforded using different colors for the unit’s background and border:

Optimized background-border combination vs white-white

As you can see, the in-content (and header, almost) units perform best with a white background and border, blending with the background of the site.

However, double-digit percentage CTR improvements were found in the sidebar and footer ad units by deviating from the white-white combination. It would have been impossible to intuit these sorts of performance differences; only testing (automatically done via YieldBuild) could have yielded these sorts of results.

Attention! Paul Edmondson, CEO of YieldBuild, will be speaking at the Web 2.0 Conference in San Francisco, Thursday, April 24, at 11 am: Maximizing Ad Revenue Through Format Optimization. Be sure to mark your calendars!
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This entry was posted on Monday, March 24th, 2008 at 3:12 pm and is filed under Online Advertising. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

One Response to “Myth: All ad units on a page should have the same color combination”

  1. Interview of YieldBuild’s Jason Menayan : india sem Says:

    [...] The rule of thumb is to blend, especially above the fold and with white/light backgrounds. Below the fold, and with dark backgrounds, sometimes a color very close to the background works better, and sometimes a highly-contrasting, even bright, color works well. But often there’s substantial benefit to nailing the exact right color, as in this example:… [...]

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