Forms of online advertising are rapidly changing. At the dawn of advertising methods, good click-through-rate might be a matter of placing a few banner ads on the landing pages while now advertisers have to sweat to reach incredibly high user’s attention bar.

Five types of online advertising performing best in 2018 include:

  • native advertising
  • video ads
  • display ads
  • full-screen interstitials
  • expandable ads

Various forms of online media consumed by users are now dictating creative formats and mediums where display ads must be served. “Windows 95” era might be a cool time but today advertisers and publishers have completely different game rules to adapt to in order to make online ads work.

If you can’t choose between types of digital ads for your ad campaign the first thing on your mind will probably be proposed click on the ad or cost per click. So, you will be right, but only partly, because the good creative also resonates to the users, it’s memorable and highly converting as the traffic it brings only pays well when it comes from the relevant landing pages.

Types of web ads winning the world in 2018

The effectiveness of online advertising may depend on different things. Different forms of online advertising showed impeccable efficiency in 2017-18 years because of the factors we will describe below in details.

As a rule, these kinds of internet ads tend to be bigger in sizes than their predecessors from previous years, and they reach the target audience easily due to interesting content, interactivity, and delicate delivery.

Types, mentioned earlier produced such CTRs: native advertising - a leader among leaders that typically generates 10.4% CTR, the full-screen interstitial is following with 5-7%, closing the list are video ads and expandable 1.2% formats.

Together these ad types qualify for 70% of ad spend taking place in 2017. When it comes to the average CTR across display ads, it was only as high as 0.1%. Nevertheless, it proved to be the most cost-efficient variant advertisers are ready to spend their budget on.

Native kinds of online ads


Native forms of online advertising are those ad units which blend with the rest of the content on the landing pages, imitating their interface, design, and functions.

Native types of digital advertising appeared not a long time ago when it turned out that banners are no longer functional because of their aggressive approach, flashy creatives that distort the website’s interface, and user banner blindness.

The most common native ads are sponsored posts, recommended and in-feed content; they are served equally good on the mobiles and desktop. Native ads also pop up in the search engine results at the top marked as “ad” at the snippet.

Unlike other forms of internet advertising, native ads are viewed 53% more and shared in 32% of cases. They have a high engagement rate because such ad types bring value to the users providing them with useful and relevant content.

In order to make such ad effective advertiser should:

  • Mark sponsored material with “ad” tag
  • Make the material interesting and useful
  • Add the share functions to the creative

Video types of web advertising


Video types of website ads are generally 14% better working in-apps and 8% on mobiles than on the desktop. The mobile platform is getting an increasingly popular platform for video ad serving, but apart from it, such surrounding helps video ads gather more shares and achieve best completion rates.

The most popular video ads include native, rewarded, and interstitials subtypes which in most cases are also served on mobiles.

Today video online advertising formats are not limited by the ads on Youtube, advertisers can easily use freshly-baked interactive creative and channel them solely to particular watcher group through programmatic advertising methods.

Video advertising methods can work well for all ad campaign and stages of the customer’s journey. The creative, however, may have greater importance for such forms of online website ads than for other formats and demand more efforts for implementation.

Video-ads significantly contribute to the publisher’s website and for the advertiser’s campaign as well, here are the few tips to make them better converting:

  • The right duration (between 15 and 30 seconds)
  • Bright, engaging plot incentive
  • Vivid CTA

Display examples of digital ads

display ads

Digital ads that belong to the display incorporate extensive pool of creatives: those can be video, textual, including pop-ups, flash banners, animated, and static images.

In the majority of cases, advertisers chose banner ads because of their cost-efficiency and ease while creating and launching, they are supported on many platforms, mobile or desktop and in different resolutions.

Different online ads which belong to display kind usually generate the most relevant traffic as they are supported by the variety of ad platforms that have targeting functions and retargeting campaigns.

Display ads can improve brand recognition, raise awareness of the product and collect more leads for the campaign. The main basis of serving display ads is choosing the right ad platform with targeting and equipping the creative with such elements:

  • Captivating offer
  • Selling content
  • Catchy design

Interstitial types of web ads


Interstitial types of online display advertising commonly used on the mobile platform and in-app as banners and videos.

Being among the best types of online advertising for a mobile platform, interstitial video usually covers the whole user screen in between game intervals, at the beginning of the app or the webpage loading.

After the banner ads are shown on the screen, their time expires and they disappear, it is important to let the user the option to click on the ad immediately or close it right away.

The fact that banner ads and videos usually appear at the logical interruptions makes interstitials less aggressive but, nevertheless, immersive and memorable. Interstitials on average achieve 70% higher CTR than simple banners.

Interstitial-based types of online advertising campaigns will demand more advanced ad platforms with a higher capacity as a creative may be relatively heavy. It is recommended to serve interstitial ads programmatically and configure the asynchronous creative loading inside the app’s settings. What’s also important:

  • Place the ads in the apps with relevant subject
  • The app has essential intervals
  • Don’t overstuff app with ads (tune the frequency)

Expandable online ads


What are the best online ads that work best against banner blindness syndrome? Right, there’s no match to expandable online ads when the greater visibility should be achieved.

Expandable types of online ads display banners, typically appear in-app or in mobiles when they’re triggered by the user’s behavior such as mouse hover, click or tab at the adjacent area or page scroll.

Expandable banner ads may grow in size and reach much larger dimensions when the user activates them. Such form of online advertising is very memorable, interactive, and engaging, according to IAB their engagement rate is 25% higher than average.

Expandable online ads, however, can be highly annoying for users, that’s why specialists recommend serving them through the ad platforms which can eliminate the frequency cap in the campaign settings. It’s also important to:

  • Set measurement for interaction and expansion rates
  • Make sure creative shuts with hover or click-off
  • Set the right timing for creative (around 5-10 sec.)

All types of online advertising: launching

Different forms of online display advertising demand different approaches. The thing is, programmatic today can serve the most effective kinds of online advertising automatically, empowered with RTB protocol.

Advertisers pay for using self-serve DSP platform that connects them to the publishers who use holistic SSP from their side to access the demand side. Each of the parties uses dashboards that allow automating deals, accepting only those that meet their preferences.

Advertisers choose what sorts of online advertising to serve, where and how to target, who should be viewing the ad (target demographics according to geolocation, IP, browser, etc.), and configures the budget spending options.

The publisher is also able to choose what varieties of online advertising to accept and serve on the landing pages, their sizes, positions and set the floor price, under which the deals won’t happen.

This way the platform becomes the tool that enables to match the right inventory to the right online ads helps to gain control over the placements and audiences.

If it is a long-term marketing strategy, it will most definitely require using different variants of online advertising, each added gradually for the new campaign or user segment. Some online ads will be added and others will be cut out as you test them, obtain the stats and identify the most optimal creative options for you.

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