Ad-blindness: Preventing It on Your Blog
If you read any blogs yourself then you know just how easy it is to tune out the ads. It’s called ad-blindness. It’s something we all experience and, as a blogger, it’s something you’ll have to learn to overcome. There is no single, perfect solution but here are some tips to help prevent ad-blindness on your blog.
Where to place your ads
Above the fold is always your best bet, but where above the fold? The best placement is near your strongest content. On one of my blogs I get the best click throughs with a banner I have at the top of each blog post. On another blog I have a small block of four 125 X 125 ads at the top of my right sidebar, just above my categories. If you’re using Adsense ads or ads that are keyword generated, you’ll have better results if you place them near relevant keywords inside your blog post or in the sidebar closest to your content.
Rotate your ads frequently
Most advertisers create multiple banners of different sizes and designs. Rotate your ads frequently so repeat visitors will notice there’s been some kind of change. If you’re using WordPress there are plugins that will automatically rotate your ads for you each time the page is refreshed.
Limit your ads
Casting a wider net doesn’t always get you more fish. In fact, when it comes to ads, having too many on your blog just makes it look cluttered and unprofessional. Your readers might not see your ads, but they’ll see right through your attempt to snare them. They’re coming to your blog for information. Give it to them and don’t worry, when they’re ready, they’ll find your ads.
There’s nothing that says you have to link that ad directly to the advertiser’s sales page. A lot of readers don’t want to go directly from your blog to an intimidating hype-filled sales page. Create your own landing page to act as a pre-sell page and link to that first.
There’s also nothing that says you have to use that advertiser’s banners. We just assume that the advertiser knows what he’s doing but in a lot of cases they don’t pay that much attention to the design of their banners. Not to mention the fact that everyone else is using that same banner so naturally your readers are ignoring it – they’ve already seen it all over the Web. Create you own eye-catching design and get more attention.
And finally, there’s nothing that says you have to use banner ads all over your blog. I get some of my best click-through rates using anchor text links within my content. Not a “Click Here for more information” link, but a contextual link within a sentence.
The key to preventing ad-blindness is to be aware yourself. Monitor your click through rates on a regular basis and be prepared to do a lot of moving if necessary. Don’t just assume an ad doesn’t work just because you’re not getting the clicks. Especially if you’ve done the research and you’ve chosen a great product and backed it up with great content.
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