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Banner Ads Increase Website Visits, Registrations and Sales -- Even When People Don't Click on Them

While the headlines talk about the ineffectiveness of internet advertising a new study, using measurable analytics, begs to differ.  This is good news for advertising based web sites.

Avenue A, an advertising market retention firm, has completed  a study  that proves banner ads  increase conversions...which include site visits, registrations or sales.  By using banner ads, the Pilot study showed a 10% increase in overall Web conversions.  That is a significant number.

The study also concluded that a majority of those conversions are "Awareness Conversions," which come from customers who see an ad but don't click on it immediately, but rather visit, register or purchase later on the advertiser's website. The results confirm that viewing banner ads increases both brand awareness and a prospect's propensity to convert. 

Testing Methodology - How they did it.

The test designated one test group of anonymous cookies to receive banner ads from the client, "Company X", and an anonymous control group to receive ads completely unrelated to Company X. Avenue A then counted the number of cookies in each group that converted on Company X's website. Because both the control group and test groups were randomly selected, it is valid to assume that Company X's offline campaigns and other promotions had the same impact on both groups. The difference in behavior, therefore, can be directly attributed to the online campaign.

How Will Advertisers Benefit From This New Finding?

Marketers use a variety of metrics to track the effectiveness of Web advertising. Some look at conversion rates; many still only track click-through rates. With the TrueLift(TM) testing methodology used in the pilot study, Avenue A evaluated the results of the client's advertising campaign compared to what would have happened if they did not run an online advertising campaign at all. Using this methodology, Avenue A compared the results of a test group with those from a control group. This applies a principle that is central to standard scientific research to the world of web advertising. For the first time, TrueLift makes it possible to definitively measure what is immeasurable in the offline world: how viewing ads affects a prospect's decision to buy. 
"We believe this is a breakthrough study, providing confirmation for those marketers who have reaped the benefits of online advertising for the last few years, and offering proof of the medium's effectiveness for those who are considering it for the first time," said Diane McCowin, Avenue A vice-president of analytics.

Avenue A, a digital marketing and technology company, enables marketers to acquire, retain, and grow customers across digital media.  www.avenuea.com.


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