The short answer is, yes. When your banner advert is displayed on a website, it functions as a hyperlink – much like hyperlinks you see in text that are usually highlighted or underlined. When the reader clicks on your banner ad, they’re taken to your website.
You don’t have to have a sophisticated site with an online shop and complicated functions. But you will need to have a minimum of one page (the ‘landing page’), which gives the information the visitor needs and includes a call to action – maybe encouraging them to take advantage of a special offer, call you or order a brochure.
You should also have basic information such as your business contact details – this helps you appear trustworthy.
If you do have a larger website, the landing page should include links to your home page and other useful pages, such as your ‘About us’ page.
What do I need to have on my landing page?
You should think about the following:
- Does the landing page help your potential customer understand who you are and what you offer? Many readers will simply leave if they aren’t convinced straight away that your business is what they’re looking for.
- Does the landing page live up to the promises of the advert? For example, if your banner advert promises a special offer, the landing page should explain all about it – don’t bury it away on a different page.
- What impression does the potential customer get of your business? It might be off-putting if they click on a professional-looking advert and arrive at an amateurish-looking or broken website, or one with inconsistent branding.
- Is it clear what the reader needs to do next if they want to do business with you? Make it as easy as possible for them to take the next step.
Do I have to display banner adverts on my website?
You don’t need to give up advertising space on your site to have your banner adverts displayed elsewhere, unless you’re taking part in a banner exchange program. In these you agree to show another company’s banner adverts on your website, in return for having yours shown on somebody else’s – so you don’t pay for the advertising space.
But you can buy advertising space on other websites without doing this – by employing an advertising agency, joining a banner ad network or speaking to websites directly.