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The World of Online Advertising, Part 1: Types of Advertising

The world of online advertising can seem a bit daunting when you first dive into it, especially since so much has changed in the past decade. So what we’d like to do is break down the barriers a bit and explore some of the details involved to give you an idea of what to expect. It’s a lot of information to cover, so we’ll be doing this in a five-part series, starting with a quick explanation of the types of advertising for you to choose from.

Banner Run

This is the probably the most basic form of online advertising in existence. We’ve all seen banners running across websites, whether you’re searching for health tips, business strategies, or the ever popular cat videos. Arguably, the best thing about a banner run is its simplicity, which makes it immediately accessible to any business within moments. It works with the purchase of a predetermined number of impressions (usually in groups of between 100,000 to 1 million) over a specified period of time. Keep in mind, though, that a banner run isn’t normally as effective as newer types of advertising techniques that have been developed for online use.


If you’ve done any type of advertising, there’s a good chance that you’re familiar with sponsorships. This is where an advertiser will sponsor either part or all of your site, most often for an exclusive amount of time. This exclusivity will ensure that only the sponsor’s ad appears on the site or specific page rather than a rotating cycle of different ads. This constant repeating of the same ad increases the likelihood that it will catch a visitor’s eye. Although there are several reasons why an advertiser will use a sponsorship, it’s typically used for the purpose of either branding or introducing a new product, where it can be most effective. Just remember that this does stop ad space from being sold through the length of the contract, which can be a negative point in some cases.


The use of affiliate marketing is a great way for an advertiser to reward others for doing the work for them, while also benefitting from it. The setup for affiliates include a special tracking code that allows identification of the website that a certain visitor arrived from, in addition to any sales or sign-ups that are completed by the visitor. For an example of an extensive affiliate system, simply check out Amazon. This highly successful company allows website publishers to advertise products on their own sites as an affiliate, garnering them a portion of any sale that’s generated because of the affiliate advertisement. The success rate of affiliate advertising will often depend on the size of your site, as it’s much more lucrative for larger websites. So keep that in mind if you decide to try it out.


This is a type of advertising that gets brought up in conversations about online marketing all the time. Google, Facebook, and Bing all offer pay-per-click and many companies have found quite a bit of success using the system. The fact that you’re only paying for the clicks that you receive instead of a possible hit-or-miss scenario after spending a big chunk of funds can allow a business — especially a smaller one — to maintain a tighter hold on their advertising budget. The only downside is that if no clicking occurs, no one benefits. Conduct a trial run and if it doesn’t work, switch to something else.

Of the four types of advertising listed above, there isn’t one that is better than all the rest. What it comes down to is figuring out which techniques will be most effective for your business and then implementing them with gusto and resilience. If desired, sample all of them to find the perfect recipe for success. Good luck!


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