Tuesday: 26.April.2005

Borderless Google AdSense ads: towers a slightly different shade

Been researching ads, especially the best way to display them. There exists a whole *world* out there on the topic. I've read *dozens* of articles.

This type of research is not my favorite. It involves the business end of things, which kicks my brain into a different mode, which I find less rewarding. Less creative. More like drudgery. I prefer to learn about technology, and how to use it. But if I can increase the site's "click-thru rate" (CTR), hey, I'm all for that.

First thing I learned is that much of the info out there is contradictory. Some sites insist the best approach is to stick a banner (horizontal) at the top of the page. Others claim surfers have become "blind" to banners, so it's best to use towers. I agree that my brain filters banners, which seem blatantly commercial. So I prefer towers.

continued

But all agree: each site is different. "You have to play with the style of your ads," they claim, "to see what works best at your particular site." (which is the type of thing I find tedious).

So I decided to style my ads after those I prefer at other sites .. which are towers, positioned off to the right, where they are not intrusive. I also prefer them to have a slightly different shading than the rest of the page .. to set them off from the rest of the site (so it's clear they're ads).

One article I read suggested trying *borderless* ads, because (they claimed) the border presented a "psychological barrier" that discourages people from clicking. And I recalled my own experiences, while visiting other sites. The ads I've clicked there are almost always borderless .. and of a slightly different shading.

[Ads which are the *same* color as the rest of the page make me feel like the the site is trying to *trick* me into believing the ads are actually a part of the site itself (and not really an ad) .. which makes me NOT want to click them (even if I want to).]

So anyway, I removed the borders from ads in some pages, and saw the CTR *double* immediately. I was impressed.

Removing the borders and replacing banners with towers wasn't as easy as it might sound, especially for pages that are generated by *templates*, such as the blog, and the forums. It involved modifying the (HTML) code and manipulating the CSS (Content Style Sheets). After getting nowhere fast, I sought help from the gurus. Like you, I get by with a little help from my friends.

Google search pre-configured for query-string: best style google adsense ads

[Comments closed due to problems with s*p*a*m*m*a*g*e.]





Posted by Rad at April 26, 2005 12:22 PM

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