Why Design Matters Dramatically to Getting Leads part 1 – 300×250 Ads
Hello and welcome to this introductory post on BeAwebMarketer.com.
Today we will be talking on some theoretical aspects (supported by practical examples and resources) of how design really matters to you drawing the audience’s attention to your content. I will be showing you some ingenious ways of placing and presenting your content in order to get the most out of it and gain the highest efficiency.
Placing 300×250 ads efficiently, depending on your layout
The 300×250 banner format is the most popular and most frequently used banner for ads (either AdSense, affiliate or simply promotion). It is very important where you place them for maximum exposure, because:
- AdSense has a maximum of ad spaces per page (usually 3) and you should use them as efficiently as possible
- placing a lot of banners on a page looks spammy and WILL decrease the website’s credibility
- you want for them to draw attention, but also fit naturally into the design and whole feel of the webpage
Below are some easily understandable illustrated examples (with explanations) of efficient 300×250 ad placement depending on a few different website layouts. The important blocks will be highlighted with an orange color.
Regular blog layout
This is probably the most efficient way to place a 300×250 ad block. On the homepage, if it is a blog layout, it should be placed as the first sidebar element (or at least very close to the top of the sidebar). This generates an effective impact, basically forcing visitors to notice it. The lower it is in the sidebar, the less interesting visitors see it.
Portfolio/Pinterest like layout
In the case of portfolio-like layouts, the methods for displaying these banner ads are very interesting and productive.
If your blog homepage only shows thumbnails of the posts, an absolutely awesome method is making those thumbnails the exact same size as the ads – 300×250. What this does is it creates a geometric balance between the post thumbnails and the ads, which will be placed as post thumbnails themselves.
Either place the 2-3 ads you want to place randomly through the posts, or you can just post all of them on a single row (usually first or second). You can see two great examples of this technique below:
Now, notice how, in the illustrated examples above, the ads are balanced and fit into the whole feel of the layout (especially when the 300×250 ads are image banners). This matters a lot to how visitors see the whole picture of your blog or website.
How to display 300×250 ads in single post pages
There are a few ways to efficiently display these ad fields into post pages and still don’t mess the whole picture up. Below, there are a few examples with comments for each of them.
Let’s take this layout below for example. You read through the post (the lots of dots between the paragraphs represent more post content, which I didn’t illustrate to be more suggestive) and somewhere in the middle of the post (if it’s a longer one), you get an ad like this. In order to make it integrate well into the whole post content, you can center it and give it a nice pale gray background with the width of the whole post content wrapper. For the background, a nice, subtle gray would be #F2F2F2. This method works very well especially when you have more images in your post (for example, tutorial posts, with images for each step).
This is a very nice method of placing 300×250 ads with very high exposure. Notice how the ad spot is aligned and looks very good exactly near the post image. NOTE that you can only do this without already having a 300×250 banner on the first sidebar slot. This will make a messy contrast, having a 300×250 banner on the right, in the sidebar and one next left to it near the post image. Just choose the one you consider the most efficient for single post pages.
Another nice way of placing these ads illustrated here, in Example 6 is similar to the one in Example 4. It is the same method, but the placement differs. Instead of placing the ad field somewhere in the middle of the post, you can place it just after the ending of the content (with related posts, author box, etc, whatever you have below each post content) and right after the comments section. This place also has a high exposure rate and it will look well at the end of each post. Of course, if your posts are long enough, you can combine examples 4 and 6. Long, scrolling posts will give you the occasion to display these ads both in the middle and at the end of the content.
Now, I’ve shown you how to efficiently use part of the ad spots you have at your disposal as a webmaster. These ideas I’ve learnt after years of experience and studying the most successful online businesses and I can strongly support my opinions as being the most well-structured on this matter.
Thank you and be sure to check the upcoming posts of this series, where I will continue to teach you about other ad types and other marketing design techniques.