The Worst Types of Display Ads and How to Avoid Them

The average person is exposed to 4000 to 10,000 ads every day. Google itself serves a sizable 30 billion ads in any 24-hour period. So how do you make your marketing count? Keep reading to learn about the worst display ads and how to avoid them!

With so much competition, even small mistakes can have an adverse impact and damage your brand’s reputation. Read on as we tell you the most annoying types of display ads and how to avoid them. 

1. Generic Ads

When people skip over display ads without noticing them, it is known as banner blindness. With so many on the web, it stands to reason that they begin to blend into the background. So why would you create an ad that is the same as all the rest?

It is hard to make online display ads stand out, but there are a few tactics that can at least help. Attempt to use different color schemes to stand out. Check what other ads in a similar niche are using, and see what palettes deviate from the norm. 

Finally, try mixing up the size of your ads. You may find different dimensions can help break the banner blindness and make your ad stand out. 

2. Negative Types of Display Ads

Understandably, you don’t want people clicking on your display ad if they are unlikely to convert. It costs you money and is a wasted advertising budget. Yet using negativity in a display ad can have the effect of dissuading everyone from clicking, even those you want to attract. 

Prime examples of this are telling people what you don’t do. For example, if you have a landscape gardening service, don’t tell people that you don’t do lawn mowing or fix fences in your ad.  

It is up to you to craft succinct, alluring copy that draws in potential customers. With limited space, you should be concentrating on the value you can offer, not what you can’t do. 

3. Ads That Build Awareness With Remarketing

As a searcher, you don’t want to see adverts telling you about a company if you already know what it is. From a marketer’s point of view, you are also wasting time and your budget building awareness with people who already know the company. So why include remarketing customers in your awareness-building campaign?

Break your campaigns down into two camps: Those who know your company already and potential new customers. Try to keep these separate and craft different ad campaigns for each. You can even exclude remarketing customers from awareness campaigns to ensure they are not being targeted. 

4. Ones With a Misleading CTA

call to action is a common marketing tactic. It gives instructions to the viewer about what to do next, so they can act instead of dropping off and going elsewhere. Most successful display ad types will include one, usually at the end. 

However, your CTA and the page a user lands at must have a direct correlation. For example, if you tell them to sign up to your email list and it takes them to your generic homepage, most customers will give up and go elsewhere. Instead, the CTA should lead directly to the place it states, in this instance, the signup form.

For many, this may even include creating a series of unique landing pages, depending on the campaigns you have running. Your ultimate goal should not be to improve your CTR rate but to convert them into sales as they arrive. 

5. Repetitive Text

Online display ads don’t give you much time to get your point across, particularly if they are text-based. You have your title, description, and website title that will be displayed. 

If your website is, you don’t need to tell readers you have the best doughnut in your title or description. Instead, use this wisely, adding more context and value. You could use it to give detail on locations, or use descriptive language to entice them. 

6. Ads With the Wrong Intent

Ads with the wrong intent do not provide any value to the searcher at all. Usually, display ad types of this nature will appear when advertisers are targeting the wrong keywords and provide tenuous links to the search query.  

For example, a searcher may begin looking for a kettle and get adverts for a whole kitchen refit. While the two are linked, it is a long stretch to think someone looking for a new small appliance wants a whole makeover. It wastes time for the consumer and advertiser. 

Another mistake often made by some larger companies is to present ads for products the company does not even sell. For example, searchers looking for baking products may get sent to a kitchen store that only sells large appliances. 

7. Showing the Same Ads to the Same Audience

Using the same display ads over again, especially when they target a specific market, looks unprofessional. It should only be done with evergreen products that appeal to a mass market. By providing new information, you encourage more clicks through. 

Remarketing campaigns can be very effective but are an area where this can become a problem. Set your campaign to only remarket after an ad has been shown a specific number of times. More than three, and they probably will have an adverse impact. 

Revitalizing Your Campaign

Now you know the main mistakes with different types of display ads, use them to overhaul your campaign. Plan carefully, avoid any of these problems and check your metrics to see what is working. With some work, you will start to see a better return on investment. 

For assistance with your online advertising, Go Media Shark should be your first stop. From SEO to PPC ads, we can transform your online presence. Contact us here to speak with one of our expert staff and let us help you thrive in the digital economy. 

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