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What is Banner Blindness? How it Gets Triggered?

A lot of people have a habit of reading a lot of self-help books on “how to manage your time” — that keep them motivated through their days and weeks.

With whatever they read, somehow they develop a habit of creating time slots for every part of the day and every task that has been slated to be done on that very day.

What I mean to say, these blocks of time created, hardly have any place for GRATUITOUS things. Most often you have to IGNORE ads that appear underneath the navigation bar if it does not resonate across your mind or does not fit into YOUR cognitive schema.

These ads appearing underneath the navigation bar are called, “Banner Ads.”

Generally, when you are looking for some content, there is nothing to wait for the second moment and you would scroll the moment the web page loads without even noticing what’s there around the navigation bar — this is how most people do. This has become almost a general pattern.

You don’t deliberately ignore these ads. You are just mentally blocking these banner ads to get to the content you came looking for on the website. This practice of regularly blocking banner ads is called “BANNER BLINDNESS.”

Millions of people do what you do.

And, that is the reason these ads UNDERPERFORM and marketers feel disappointed.

What Happens when Banner Blindness Occur?

When people scroll through the page, without even noticing the information embedded into the ad near the navigation bar — NO REVENUE is generated. It is when banner blindness occurs. Nine times in ten, when banner ads are not performing, it is not because of the design, but it is something that is hard to control for a marketer.

There has to be an alternative.

There has to be an auxiliary strategy that can HIT at your audience.

NATIVE Ads are the best options.

Do you want to learn more about native advertising? Read our latest blog post to learn everything about Native advertising.

In addition to Native advertising, there are plenty of other techniques to help you get better at banner blindness. We’ll discuss these techniques later on.

Let’s talk more about Banner Blindness.

Definition: Banner Blindness

Wikipedia defines it in the following way:

“Banner blindness is a phenomenon in web usability where visitors to a website consciously or unconsciously ignore banner-like information, which can also be called ad blindness or banner noise. … Banners have developed to become one of the dominant ways of advertising.”

It can also be defined as, “Banner blindness is the phenomenon of consciously or unconsciously avoiding any interaction with the ads that can cause hurdle to the user experience and whatever he is trying to do.”

Why Banner Blindness Occurs?

Aggressively Intrusive, boring, and Irrelevant ads are dime a dozen — this is the reason most ads don’t perform resulting in ad blocking, banner blindness. These results in reduced CTR.

But, that is just a trivial part of the whole wave. There is more to it — that causes even the most relevant ads getting ignored.

Let’s start diving a little deeper into this by asking the most relevant question for any advertiser.

What do marketers dream about all day long?

You do not want any of the Online Advertising efforts you are putting in to go in vain. From content marketing to AdSense and social media marketing, everything must perform.

And as long as traffic is coming, your website will keep performing, and you’ll keep earning. That’s the kind of life every advertiser wants.

Banner ads have been in the business of advertising for quite a long time — approximately 18 years.

But there have been potential problems surrounding this form of online advertising. Banner Blindness is one of them.

“Banner Blindness” — was the term that was coined about 2 decades back in 1998. A usability test was done only to find that most information presented in the form of banners get ignored consciously or unconsciously.

When the visitors, in general, are up on some specific tasks, they would particularly avoid looking for any information that’s embedded alongside banners.

So, the goal must be to provide relevant information to the user in the context he has come to the website.

Or, people would not care about these banner ads whether they have come for a quick scan of the page, or they have come to deeply engage with the content of the website. They simply find them intrusive.

In nutshell, visitors are not going to pay heed to any of those elements of the website that anyhow look like ads. Marketers seriously need to consider some alternatives or changes in how they have been doing banner ads for long.

What Triggers Banner Blindness?

Do you know what triggers Banner blindness?

The overloaded site with tons of information — in the form of ads, text content & videos — constantly distracting the user — makes them avoid the banner ads, in particular.

Banner blindness acts as a defense mechanism against the overloaded information.

Do you know what cognitive schema is?

For all of us, the Internet has become an important part of our day-to-day lives. In fact, a regular mental pattern has been framed within our conscious or unconscious mind to spend time browsing the Internet.

The content marketers are throwing upon the users a lot of contents in the form of blogs, newsletters, articles, and more, that the user is not even interested in. It’s like putting Band-Aid on a bullet wound — the user has come looking for something else and the website is all incessantly flooded with information that does not find a solution.

These are only those cream of the crop websites where the user found the most relevant information and had come looking for it again. But, the user had created a pattern in his mind, based on his previous search, and he will not accept any of the extra information that does not fit into his regular pattern or schema — when he has come for a particular purpose.

And, this association with the web that the user makes with the Internet for accomplishing different tasks is called “cognitive schema.”

The banner blindness may have occurred because of the ads do not fit into the visitors’ COGNITIVE SCHEMA, or he has had a terrible experience with it while he happened to click the ad inadvertently in his previous visit to the website.

Wrapping up.

For advertisers, this is a worrisome aspect of banner advertising, and it must be dealt with mindfully. Native advertising is one of the ways to deal with banner blindness. You can get in touch with our experts to get Native advertising done correctly.

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