Where to place ads for maximum CTR

By November 18th, 2008

If you’re using a CPC ad network, like Google AdSense, on your site and are wondering where to position your ads in order to maximize click-through, here are some rules of thumb on ad placement that we’ve gleaned from our experience, and which was echoed in today’s Inside AdSense blog entry:

  • Place your ads above the fold: Clickthrough is maximized when visitors see the ad(s) without having to scroll down.
  • Juxtapose ad units: Place dissimilar ad units next to each other, so that they share a portion of a face with each other. For example, orient the short end of a horizontally-oriented leaderboard or banner against the top portion of a skyscraper.
  • Embed ads within content: There’s a reason the popular medium rectangle (300×250) ad unit performs so well. It’s almost always embedded within the page content, so it tends to be within a reader’s line of sight.
  • Place ads where visitors are likely to look and click: Although AdSense has rules against placing ads near images in a way that suggests there is a relationship between them, make sure you place ads next to navigational elements and other parts of the page where visitors are likely to look. Even better is to keep them near places where they will eventually click, so that both their eyes and pointer will be close in case the ad seems appealing.
  • Make your ad units fit into your overall site design: Although it’s good to get visitors to notice your ads, you’ll naturally want to avoid having them interfere with the user’s experience. Obnoxiously intrusive ads will turn visitors off.

As the Inside AdSense team states themselves, every Website is different, so while following these suggestions should help you, only a rigorous optimization testing strategy, or YieldBuild, will determine the exact sort of positioning and placement tactics will maximize clickthrough and revenue for your site.

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This entry was posted on Tuesday, November 18th, 2008 at 11:14 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 “Where to place ads for maximum CTR”

  1. Nancy Says:

    Great explanation of ad placement and size..Thanks!

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