Setting up a site for a long while, but still always complain about having a low CTR? In this post, I will briefly introduce the three basic ways to improve your CTR. Enjoy!
1 Ad Colors
Probably you have two considerations when you are selecting the colors for ads. One is to stand out your ads with high contrasting color, and the other is to camouflage your ads with background. Both may have their pros and cons, but the ultimiate choise is mainly based on your experiment with differnt colors and considerations. My experience tells me that the performance is better for the ads to be blended with background. Others have experienced better click ratios from outstanding ad colors though, so this is something you really should try out yourself. Whatever option you choose, you should at least try your ads to fit to the website’s design and color scheme though.
2 Ad Placement
Another factor incluencing the CTR is the placement of your ad. AdSense ads should not be hidden from your visitors, but they should be visible at first sight. Again, there are still several places you can choose for your ads to appear. Text ads seem to attract most clicks at the top or in the center of a website’s content area. Especially on websites with much text content.
Do you already know the so-called “heat map” by Google? It illustrates profitable ad placements on an example site layout. The fields which are colored dark orange experience the best performance while those fields with a brighter color do not perform that well. Anyway, the heat map is only a tip for you. It’s based on Google’s researches from many different websites with AdSense ads, but the heat map possibly does not show the perfect ad placement area for your own site. So – again – it’s up to you to try where on your website ads work best.
On sites with an article, ads which are placed directly below the article seem to do quite well. In addition, you should also place an ad above the article, so people can click on it at the top and at the bottom of the page.
3. Ad Format
The third way to improve ad performance is to choose another ad format. AdSense provides you with many different ad formats.
In general, wide formats seem to perform better than narrow formats. This is because people can read more words at a time without having to skip a line. I’ve experienced that the 336×280 large rectangle, the 250×250 square and the 160×600 wide skyscraper have done best on my sites. These are quite big ad formats, of course, so they need lots of space, but if they’re placed well they usually generate more income than the smaller and narrow ad formats.
Another good format is the wide 728×90 leaderboard, which does best under the editorial content of a web page or directly under the page header, in my experience. The 468×60 banner format does not convert that well, but it can still be placed in areas where there isn’t much space available, i.e. directly in the page header (next to the logo) or within articles.