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Adsense And The Surfer

(category: Adsense, Word count: 696)
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AdSense is an easy program to grasp: it's a great form of an advertising bringing a lot of benefits to every person in the chain. And of course, seeing the results it can have on a business (and a publisher) people encourage this form of publicity.

For the browsing audience this is probably the most straightforward model available, because they can be directed to a lot of new sites they wouldn't have otherwise found. Needless to say, if you have an AdSense banner on your site, and a large number of visitors you'll know it offers a great financial benefit.

But why does it work for the people clicking the links, as opposed to a standard approach?

It is aided by today's society. With bloggers and information based articles on the internet, people may be encouraged to complete purchases, which adsense can provide links to relevant suppliers whilst also benefiting the publisher.

And the good thing about this is that it works for site visitors as well. In fact Google realized that by pleasing the people who are looking for something, and directing them to what they need faster, everybody wins.

It is because of this that a lot of websites promote through AdSense in both content and search. They do it because they ultimately learned that it works for everyone.

If we look in the past, we can realize that this kind of publicity has a great impact over the people, especially in the last few years. When we enter on a web site and we see a graphical banner, our first idea is to cancel it out of our mind, because it's of no concern to us.

That's why traditional banner advertising is wrong. It's precisely because people are becoming savvy that they don't look at a flashy banner because they think they'll be losing their time with it.

We've gotten accustomed to banners that don't interest us. And we're accustomed to them having nice graphics. So we naturally associate the two things and think that a banner with nice graphics has nothing to tell us.

But we might look at a text-ad because we've grown accustomed to them being targeted at what we're looking for. Basically these advertisements have marketed themselves into being looked at by any visitor.

This is a typical "no fluff, just stuff" situation. And in the end it means the visitors will see what they're interested in, not some random cool graphics you throw at them.

As stated above, site visitors adopt this advertising mechanism, because it is efficient in leading them to pages of interest and can offer ton of things they really want to see. Someone coming across an article on adsense was probably looking for shoes or doing research on shoes when they came across the article.

And most importantly for everyone, including visitors, this scheme can only improve as the process gets further refined to make ads more relevant to what you're looking for, not just a couple of keywords on a site.

Nowadays, it is because of AdSense that Internet surfers are looking after more interesting related things from banners, and the companies behind the site (Google and the advertiser) need to have better ideas to display, as expectations have increased a great deal.

So could "Do no evil" actually work in today's cut throat competitive marketplace? Well, as you can see it can and it does. And you, as a visitor are the one who gets to enjoy this the most. Advertising becomes less of a burden and more of a benefit, and is still a benefit you can choose to ignore.

Less obtrusive banners; banners that you're actually likely to be interested in and click means you'll be less annoyed by surfing the web and feel like you as a visitor being offered a relevant service.

Although some may feel reluctant to read articles that are there purely to compel consumers, undoubtedly without this consideration they are useful. Ultimately the adverts mean that you don't have to go back to your homepage every time you are compelled to complete a purchase.

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Click Fraud

(category: Adsense, Word count: 602)
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If you're using AdWords or AdSense you must have heard about an emerging practice in the underworld of computing called "click fraud". But what exactly is click fraud and how is it accomplished?

Well AdSense uses a payment mechanism that awards a certain amount of money to a publisher (someone who holds an AdSense banner on their page) every time a person clicks on the said banner. So click fraud is the attempt to have people clicking the ads just so that they can earn a greater income.

There are people setting up sites for the sole purpose of fraudulently generating revenue through Google's AdSense program. These users achieve an incredible number of clicks through many methods, some complex and sophisticated and some rudimentary and simple.

One of the most complex is through the use of so called "hitbots". These are automated programs who emulate clicking the links in AdSense banners (there are some that actually click the banners as well).

Google's AdSense protection scheme is by no means perfect and nearly anyone can find the details of surmounting the protection mechanism, ironically just by doing a Google search.

Another, more rudimentary method is to hire a lot of people in a poor country to click the links on your site. This means these people will actually sit all day and just click links so you can earn a fortune. They come from very poor countries like India, and they're prepared to do so for just $0.50 an hour.

Of course, there's a problem with this mechanism. Once Google receives a large number of clicks from a single address, the address and the site that had the AdSense banner will be banned, and the illicit behavior might even get the fraudster sued.

To prevent this from happening, many people use a large number of proxy servers for the purpose of clicking. These are basically trojans, located on computers throughout the world (though mostly in the US). What's even more daunting is that these clicks will appear to originate from an actual computer so such scams are really hard to detect.

And don't think this happens only in isolated instances. There is a great deal of illegal activity in this domain.

In fact there's so much that if search engine companies don't increase their security with such programs as AdSense, such criminal behavior could become more become even more damaging.

Google has a very strict policy regarding click fraud, and it has sued those employing such techniques in the past. But while the search engine giant tries its best to minimize the risk of click fraud there's certainly room for a lot of improvement.

It is estimated that more then 20% of the clicks that follow an AdSense link are just done in order to get money from the person paying for the ad. Some people believe the number of fraudulent clicks to be even twice as large.

There are a great deal more schemes involving click fraud, such as groups of AdSense publishers clicking each other's links (which is referred to as "clicking rings", or spamming people so that they click such links.

Despite Google still holding click fraud on a leash, the phenomenon is certainly raising concerns for the advertisers on AdWords, but despite this advertising with Google's AdSense still remains more profitable for the advertiser, as opposed to traditional untargeted advertising schemes.

There are some means of protection against such schemes and all advertisers should be savvy enough to employ them. Many advertisers choose to avoid the content network all together for fear of click fraud.

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Seo For Adsense

(category: Adsense, Word count: 571)
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If you've been using Google's AdSense on your pages you obviously feel the need to somehow generate even more traffic for your website, which in turn would translate to more AdSense click and a higher income.

But who do you do this? Well, the major way you'll get visitors to see your website (other then using AdWords, which is encouraged as well) is to use some techniques to have search engines send more and more users towards your page, by ranking high in search results for your topics of interest.

Believe it or not this is a technique, better known as search-engine optimization or simply SEO. So here are a bunch of tips that come handy under every amateur or professional optimizer's belt.

The first thing you need to take care of is the actual source code and layout of your page. This has to be kept as simple as possible. The problem comes when AdSense and the search engines themselves begin to have troubles in extracting the most relevant keywords on your site because of a too complex layout.

Secondly, try to have each one of your pages target only one specific topic. This way it is a lot easier for them to get indexed properly and for the AdSense ads to be consistent with the content of the site itself.

Also, try not to include too many hyperlinks in your page as well. This also means you should try not to use too many AdSense ads on your page either.

If there are certain keywords you wish to target, make sure the word you wish to target is present in the title, in the first paragraphs as well as in the name of the file. While you're at it you might want to ensure the word springs up in the page's last paragraphs.

And of course, it's very important for your content to have original and compelling content. How do you do this? Well the easiest way to do it is to find something you're really passionate about. That way, providing you give it a lot of effort you're bound to have a great page quite fast.

If the content you use in your site is in the public domain (which is highly discouraged) make sure that you at least give it an original title, and add an opening and a closing paragraph of your own.

This takes a little while, but if, after waiting, you still can't find your page near the top, you should try rewriting your title and your first and last paragraphs. It doesn't take much, often just changing a few words will give you the right results.

And of, course there's the use of keyword tools that may aid you in finding some good keywords to include on your page that will drive visitors to your site more and more.

So those are about the basic techniques in search engine optimization. You can find a lot of computer tools to aid you in doing this, and of course, Google is a great place to search for this.

In the end, you'll find that SEO is a complex topic, and entire books have been written on the topic as well. You might find that you have a lot of optimization you need to do in order to get more and more visitors to your site and clicking those precious AdSense banners.

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Why Use Google Adsense

(category: Adsense, Word count: 670)
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Undoubtedly, you've heard about Google's AdSense and you are thinking about giving it a go. But is it really worth placing an AdSense banner on your site?

The answer is a definite yes. You could always have some other banner on your site, or even use some search of affiliate ad program and that would probably make you some money, given of course that your site enjoys a healthy amount of visitors. However with affiliate marketing, it is expected that the visitor from your website completes a sale before you are remunerated.

But that's nowhere near what you get for using AdSense. There are people who earn in excess of 100.000 dollars per year by using AdSense. And it doesn't just stop with making more money. Firstly, the ads are text only. That means they're by far less obtrusive on your visitors then your average, flashy banner that's designed to catch the eye of the visitor.

Sure, you'll have to ensure they get better placement, so as to be noticed but despite that they don't bother viewer's as much as traditional ads. Think about the many sites you've seen using pop-ups, floating banners and many other schemes that will have visitors screaming in anger every time they visit the said website. You can actually do better then that, annoying people less and still making an amount of money.

Secondly, the ads are generated based on the contents of your site automatically. When you use an affiliate ad program, you have to specify certain categories that your sites belong to.

However, if any page on your site falls outside of these categories, the banners aren't targeted anymore. And what that means is that you're potentially showing ads to people who don't have any interest in them and that can lead to inefficiencies.

With Google AdSense that just about never happens: the ads present on your site will always be in sync with whatever your visitors are interested in and that adds to your site's value and to the revenue it produces.

What's more, the look of these banners and their size is customizable, which means they will feel more integrated with the rest of your site's content, which brings an increase in your site's overall visual quality as opposed to a traditional approach.

For many people, there's also a great problem with finding people to advertise on their site as well. AdSense is clearly the easiest solution available to this problem today.

It's free to join the AdSense program and it almost takes no time at all. The potential database of websites from AdWords is larger then anything you might encounter from any competitor, numbering over 150.000 users. This means as more people compete the CPC or cost per click for search terms will inevitably rise.

Also, setting up AdSense on your site is a breeze, and you can complete the whole process in less then an hour. It takes a lot less to do then any form of affiliate advertising which is yet another reason to choose the easy AdSense approach.

All you need to do is add an AdSense banner on your website (other then registering with the program of course) is to copy & paste a few lines and you're all done, you get to choose where the banners go, how large they are and how they integrate with the rest of your site.

For any webmaster out there, that's a killer scheme because it lets you draw the line between your site's usability level and the amount of advertising you wish to have. Some people need the money badly while others just keep AdSense running to pay for the hosting of their website.

AdSense is a great advertising program because a lot of thought has went into making it "just work for everyone". It works great for the people who use AdWords, for the webmasters using AdSense, and most importantly for the visitors of the websites.

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Why Advertisers Support Adsense

(category: Adsense, Word count: 561)
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Google is the biggest search engine on the web. It controls over 40% of Internet searches, and with that it controls pay per click advertising (pay per click). PPC involves the advertiser paying a rate for every click through (CTR) in which the advertisers set. As their budget increases, their position increases, and as their position increases, they get more traffic.

This has lead to over 140,000 companies choosing to advertise with them, and they advertise in a number of ways. The first way is through is through appearing on Google searches, the second is through appearing on distributors websites, and the third is through appearing in distributors search results. As advertisers appear in Google searches, the question is sometimes asked. Why do they choose to advertise with distributors as well?

One reason for this is scalability. Those who originally choose to advertise in search results and who were getting a ROI (return on investment) will decide at one point that they need to identify other advertising opportunities. With thousands of websites which have the capacity to display their adverts the advertisers can gain further exposure very quickly.

Another reason why advertisers choose to advertise in Google distributors websites is that it gains them further exposure. 60% of internet users do not use Google, so the advertiser can appeal to a wider audience through choosing to opt for distribution channels. Many website users may be looking to buy a product such as a phone, yet instead of coming across a website which sells such a product, they come across an article. If the article is on a website which contains Adsense then inevitably advertisers can use this channel to penetrate their audience.

Another reason why advertisers choose adsense is because they trust Google. The company is renowned for being an ethical company who are fun to work whilst providing free services to millions worldwide. Advertisers feel that money invested with Google is safe. Despite the evolution of click-fraud and its inevitable disadvantages for advertisers they appear to understand that this is an issue which Google wants to stop and hopefully will eventually. Advertisers are happy that Google admits a problem exits and provides refunds accordingly.

The trust in Google also stems from a trust in pricing. The pricing is set by market forces and therefore advertisers never feel that publishers or Google are overpricing the service. This means that as long as advertisers are able to advertise they will continue to do so, if not at the same rates.

Another strong advantage for advertisers is that they can appear where publishers promote their service. An example of this can seen if you consider a publisher who is discussing the benefits of new IT software. If a software retailer appears on the website then inevitably they will be the likely source from which the web surfer will purchase the product. If the surfer is not interested then you could argue that they would not click on the advert.

The service which Google provides has created an opportunity for businesses of all sizes to advertise. Although the issue of click fraud still plagues the service it is till widely regarded as the best. New businesses attempt to promote themselves on the web, whilst established brands alike choose to attract interest in their service using the same technique.

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Where Adsense Should Appear

(category: Adsense, Word count: 668)
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When deciding whether to incorporate Adsense into your website there are several factors to consider. Many feel that it diminishes their brand, whilst others see it as a useful tool for visitors which creates revenues and makes their content profitable.

The choice can largely come down to the commercial goals and the purpose of your website. Many businesses who sell products decide to place Adsense adverts within their website. This would appear to be a strange choice, opening up opportunities for rivals to promote their service or product to your potential customer base.

Many publishers claim that they are only doing this to allow companies who provide ancillary services to advertise. These claims have some merit, as those who for example sell pillows could provide those who sell bedding with an opportunity to advertise.

Although this would make sense, there are still those online retailers who allow rivals to penetrate their audience. Many claim that there are still benefits in allowing your direct competitors to advertise within your website. One of these is that ultimately if visitors wish to see your competitors they would be able to see them through a Google search regardless. This may be true however the thought of an established brand like coco-cola having a Pepsi advert in their website is not even a possibility.

Another factor which is considered in this situation is that publishers do not feel that Adsense is effective in making conversions. They feel that visitors who would click on adverts are not highly qualified customers, as they would quickly navigate to the materials or products that interest them if they were.

Despite Adsense being a questionable choice for online retailers, it is surely a good supplementary service for other varieties of online publishers. For example, a website which provides a free service like dictionary.com gets high levels of traffic, and is able to make their service profitable through adsense. This has been the case for Bloggers who originally provided content free of charge, being unable to reach the scale that is necessary to contract with advertisers directly.

This could also apply to other previously free services, including wider forms of information broadcast, and news for example. In 2006 a man who later published a selection of Videos claims to make $19,000 a month through adsense, claiming that he was also contacted through Google to help him increase the CTR (Click Through Rate) that he achieved. The thought of success like this has been a major factor in stimulating online publishers to opt for Adsense.

Many publishers also claim that adsense makes their website look more professional. Those who are able to contract with advertisers are generally seen to provide a service with large appeal, and therefore those unfamiliar with the program may feel that the Adsense advertiser is in this position.

Adsense however, is also aligned with those publishers who use the service purely to provide links to adverts. Everyone has done a Google search, clicked on an Adwords advert and came into a website which reads top ten resources on... This is a major problem, as is generally something that surfers find frustrating. If people see that it says adverts by Google, and they then see adverts by Google on another site, they may align that site with consumer unfriendly practices. This is therefore an issue which Google has to address, to maintain Adsense as a reputable service.

Regardless of the disadvantages and the websites for which the service may be inappropriate it is still a useful tool for website visitors. Those who visit a website, and click on a link provide revenues for the publisher, whilst those who provide free services are able to generate revenue.

The only fear that Google has, is that rival PPC programs offer better deals to publishers and they decide to go elsewhere, therefore taking advertisers with them. However, ultimately it is best for advertisers and publishers if they largely remain in same PPC circuit.

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Tools For Adsense

(category: Adsense, Word count: 553)
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If you're just boarding on the AdSense train, and looking to find a quick way to make the profits you've seen all being pulled of all over the Internet, you might be interested in a couple of tools.

These software tools are designed to aid AdSense publishers in getting a better understanding on how traffic flows through their site. Some will help you in understanding which keywords gain you more money and which locations give you the best AdSense payment.

One of the best such tools available is AdSense Gold (http://www.profitbooks.com/go/astracker) which allows you to have a better understanding of which ads and formats actually get more clicks and which are useful or nearly useless.

This program works by tracking views and clicks on all the publisher's pages. It even goes as far as offering you the possibility to see which referrer each visitor came in through.

There's a free tool called SynSense (http://www.singerscreations.com/RSS/Posts/235.asp) which is more of an AdSense monitoring tool. This sits in the tray and offers actualized AdSense stats as you hover your mouse over its icon. It's a very nice tool for those which like to be informed on how their AdSense is doing at all times of the day.

Google provides you with stats in a csv format on their site. So someone made a tool that can automatically download such files and extract a lot of information from them. The name of this tool is CSV AdStats and it is available from http://www.nix.fr/en/csvadstats.aspx?q=download

It has a large number of features, including the possibility to highly customize reported stats, exporting data and charts to other formats. It's in French but the language can very easily be changed to English.

Of course any tool can only access these stats as often as 15 minutes but the authors are well aware of that fact and none of these tools will get you in trouble with Google because of that.

If, however, you're browsing content most of the time, and your tool of choice is the Firefox Internet browser, there's an extension for this program that allows you to view the stats in your status bar.

Again, this software is aware of Google's 15 minute rule and enforces its usage, 15 minutes being the minimum time between updates. The Google AdSense notifier for Firefox can be obtained from http://code.mincus.com/?p=3

There is also a program called Golden Keywords out there that helps you in getting the best keywords for your site. It's really efficient and very easy to use. It does come with a price tag though, it costs $49.95 and it can be obtained from http://www.regnow.com/softsell/nph-softsell.cgi?item=8616-2

So as you can see, software developers are making more and more programs meant to help you in your quest to maximize your AdSense profits. But before you go out looking for them remember that Google has a few features of its own as well.

It does offer some reports (albeit a bit more limited) and using the 'channels' feature is a good way of finding out which ads on your site are really bringing in most of the revenue.

Be on the look out as new tools appear daily and make sure to invest time in your site, as that is the real key in success with AdSense.

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Adsense Alternatives

(category: Adsense, Word count: 734)
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Many people have started using Google's AdSense program, but there are some who find it a bit too uncertain or simply not suiting their own requirements from an ad program.

But thankfully for such people, there are many alternatives to AdSense which attempt to alleviate some of its shortcomings. Here is a list of the most noteworthy ones from the lot with a description concerning each one.

AllFeeds (http://www.allfeeds.com/?action=publishers)

AllFeeds has a great pool of online advertisers to choose from. It also features many display formats that you can choose from. These include banners, buttons, XML feeds, DHTML pop-ups and so on. It also features real time reporting of your ad status. The site will mail a check every month, provided that you earn more then $25.00, while rolling over earnings for the next month if you don't. Another interesting thing about AllFeeds is that it integrates with Google AdSense, maximizing your earnings with AdSense.

MarketBanker (http://www.marketbanker.com/mb/sell.php)

MarketBanker allows you the unique possiblity to set the pricing for your site. It also allows you to allow or reject any link that appears on your site (although AdSense itself does a very good job of this as well, with URL filters) There's also a statistics section which will allow you to see how well your site is doing. The ads are small just like AdSense's and they're just as easy to set up. Also, registration for MarketBanker is free.

BidClix ( http://www.bidclix.com/PubTop.html)

BidClix is different because it has advertisers compete for clicks on your site, which in turn is meant to generate the highest possible profits for your page. It also has a very large pool of advertisers which ensure there are plenty of people to choose your site. However, it does require more polish on site contents then AdSense. As most sites, real time statistics are available and its very easy to get started with this service, but it's also very flexible.

Chitika (http://www.realcontext.com/index.php?option=RealContext:+Contextual+Targeting+Engine)

RealContext uses Artificial intelligence to retrieve the most relevant ads for your page. And there's an extra feature which makes RealContext unique as well. Keywords are selected based upon which previous selections payed off and which didn't. That means there's a constant feedback process that ensures you gain better revenue from your ads. It also supports blocking certain adds and child-safe filtering and many more options.

AdHearus (http://adhearus.com/webmaster.php)

AdHearus is a very feature-packed contextual ad provider. As with AdSense, advertisements are targeted but it doesn't stop here at all. The ads are very flexible, you can select from text-ads, banners, rectangles, pop-ups, pop-unders or skyscrapers. You can also display your own ads, through rotation, both on your site and on other affiliate sites, which makes AdHearus a hybrid with conventional advertising technologies. There's a very comprehensive on-line real time reporting feature and, as usual with such services, starting out is free and it's a breeze.

AffiliateSensor (http://www.affiliatesensor.com/)

AffiliateSensor has highly customizable ad blocks, which you can make for yourself with an easy to use on-line interface. You also get realtime reporting with clicks-by-domain, page and refferer. There's integration with Google AdSense as well, through the google_alternate_ad_url so AffiliateSensor can be used as a substitute for Google PSA's (Public Service Ads).

Kanoodle Bright Ads (http://www.kanoodle.com/about/brightads.cool)

Kanoodle's offering allows publishers to get ads related to topics or segments, and not the traditional keyword oriented ads. The site also groups publisher sites with advertisers by hand to ensure high-revenue generating ads. And speaking of revenue, the amount of money you receive is a clear 50% share of the amount of money Kanoodle recieves for an advertiser.

TargetPoint (http://publisher.targetpoint.com)

TargetPoint is oriented more towards content publishers. It offers full control over the look the ads, statistics over your site's overall performance and better revenue. It's free to register and you earn a guaranteed 60% of the total revenue. You can get payed with Paypal of Bank checks and (most times) wire transfers as well.

Clicksor (http://www.clicksor.com)

Clicksor will earn you as much as 60% from the amount of money your website produces. What you get is about the same as AdSense, there are targeted text ads, you can view the revenues from your website in real time. You can receive money via PayPal or through a check every two weeks, provided that you have earned more then $50. If you haven't made that much, your earning roll over to the next period

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Text V Graphic On Adsense

(category: Adsense, Word count: 677)
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Google Adsense provides advertisers and publishers with the opportunity to place adverts in both text and graphic format.

As advertisers decide to put adsense into their website over banner advertising, the question still remains. Which is the best for advertisers and which is the best for publishers?

On one hand advertisers may feel that image adverts are more responsive yet less likely to stimulate a sale. On the other hand text adverts may convert more, whilst being less visible to the consumer.

Text based adverts are considered the least intrusive of the two formats. However does that mean that Graphic advertising is better? Consumers are used to graphic advertising from signing into free email accounts, and from using other web based services. Through being used to graphic advertising they have almost programmed their selves to ignore it. Through the adverts being untargeted, the consumer is used to brand advertising which they feel is generally less purposeful. This may cause the consumer to ignore the graphic advert from the assumption that it will be the same.

Text adverts are not forced upon surfers. Through being less obvious some people will not see them at all, however those who do see them, and read them are significantly more likely to click on them. This is for a number of reasons, but the first is that they provide more information. Generally, someone who is reading text on a page is not going to be fully satisfied by what they read, and if they check adsense adverts they will most likely read something which will further supplement whatever their intention is next. With an image advert, it is far more of a gamble for the surfer.

Graphic advertising is often paid per impression. This is because the advertiser may be trying to promote their brand, instead of promoting a specifically useful service. They therefore are assumed to have worse conversion rates, and with this text adverts are in the consumers eyes more effective. However, if the text contained within an advert was placed in graphic format, which would be the most effective? Well firstly it can assumed that the surfer will be more likely to view it, however if their were multiple image adverts appearing next to each other they may feel overwhelmed.

Graphic adverts are also harder to regulate. Let's consider Google allowing adverts to be changed frequently and without regulation. The advertiser could claim affiliation from the website they are advertising on, and contain keywords such as "ipod" which cannot be contained within a text advert. Although more regulation and quality control could be in place, a pornographic image for example could be made to appear in an advertiser's adverts unknowingly.

Text adverts also have a broader market appeal, as advertisers don't generally have the in house resources to create an image advert, but do have the in house resources to write a text advert. This could mean that a wider array of advertisers find text advertising accessible, through text adverts being less burden on the advertiser, and being easy to change.

Text adverts are also cheaper for the advertiser to create, where as a graphically designed advert may cost in excess of $200. Through removing this fixed cost advertisers may be willing to allot a higher rate to advertising itself; thus benefiting the advertiser and the publisher.

Text advertising appears to be the preference of the advertiser. They pay a CTR (click through rate) and only receive targeted traffic. This removes risks from businesses that previously had to worry that adverts were not only seen, but clicked on and stimulating sales. As CPC (Cost Per Click) is more relevant to text adverts, advertisers are able to gain exposure without needing a high click through rate to be effective.

The big brands are willing to advertise in both formats however the broad market appeal of text inevitably makes it the winner. As flash websites disappear with image adverts, it is becoming clear that text and information is the preference of the website users.

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