5 Tips for Creating Impactful Display Ads

helpful tips

Optimize Your Display Advertising Strategy by Nailing These Attention-Grabbing Details

The effectiveness of a great marketing strategy depends on execution. When you’re executing a display advertising campaign, ads that hit all the right marks are the difference between a successful campaign and a wasted budget. Here are five tips for creating impactful display ads.

Use High-Quality, Properly Sized Images for Your Online Display Advertising Campaigns

The foundation of a successful display ad looks a lot like the foundations taught to us in our early childhoods: square-shaped block, meet square-shaped hole. Display ads come in all sorts of shapes and sizes, and ensuring that your ad is optimized for the display size you’ve chosen makes a world of difference in your ad’s visual impact and determines what websites or apps it can appear on.

The ad size you choose when designing your display ad also attributes to the success of your campaign. According to Google AdSense, these are the five top-performing ad sizes for online display advertising:

300×250 “Medium Rectangle”
336×280 “Large Rectangle”
728×90 “Leaderboard”
300×600 “Half Page Unit”
320×50 “Mobile Leaderboard”

Use Powerful – But Concise – Language in Your Display Ad Copy

The quickest way to make someone feel indifferent toward your products or services is to use lackluster language to describe them. The copy on your digital display ad is like the start of a conversation, and the language you use determines whether it’ll engage readers enough to talk back. Intrigue your audience with clear, descriptive language that isn’t too vague or clickbait-y. And whenever possible, orient your language to the reader. Your ad should showcase how you provide for their wants and needs while meeting them where they are in their research process or purchasing journey. And most importantly, your copy should direct viewers to the action you wish them to take. This is commonly called a CTA, or Call to Action.

Here are some examples of ways to strengthen your display ad copy to pique your audience’s interest:

“We offer comprehensive landscaping services that result in beautiful lawns,” becomes “Contact us to get the lawn of your dreams.”

“We have delicious new lunch specials, served daily from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.,” becomes “View our mouthwatering daily lunch specials!”

“Affordable Miami hotel rooms for your next beach getaway,” becomes “Relax in Miami for $175. Book now.”

The artwork in your targeted display advertising – and your website landing page the ad leads to – can fill in the blanks for your audience.

When In Doubt: Simplify

When visiting an art museum, a viewer might stop to ponder exactly what they’re looking at when they reach a confounding painting. Their eyes may flit from subject to subject, trailing over gaudy baroque details as they watch many stories unfolding at once amidst a flurry of colors, patterns and textures. “What an intriguing work of art,” they may think, glad they’ve taken the time to properly appreciate the complex splendor of it all.

The Internet, unfortunately, is not an art museum.

Your audience’s precious attention is finite, and the pivotal moments it takes viewers to discern the intent of your online display advertising are all it takes for that attention to drift elsewhere. A study from Microsoft found that the average consumer has an eight-second attention span, and a study from December 2022 found that Gen Z has an average attention span of only 1.3 seconds. Overly complicated color palettes, illegible text, and images with too many subjects can easily discourage your target audience and prevent them from discerning your message. Simplify your ad so viewers can quickly interpret it with a glance.

Check out this example of a display ad that’s too busy versus a simple, effective ad that’s easy for viewers to understand.

  • Seol Food - Order Now Display Ad
  • Seol Food - Order Now Display Ad version 2

Display Advertising Needs a Landing Page, Not a Crash Site

Congratulations! Your targeted display ad has successfully shepherded your audience to your website. Guiding people to the designated page, your landing page, was your ad’s only goal, right?


Your landing page is more than a destination to drop your audience off at with a wave and a smile. It should work cohesively with your display advertisement to guide potential customers towards making a commitment to your business, whether that’s purchasing a product, booking a consultation, or signing up for a newsletter. Ask yourself these questions when creating a landing page:

  • Is the information on my landing page relevant to my ad’s call-to-action?
  • Does my landing page include a way for viewers to easily take action and/or move through the website?
  • Does my landing page have compelling information and design elements that match the promises made in my digital display ad?

Creating amazing landing pages for your online display advertising campaigns is just one part of building a stunning website that serves the needs of your business. If you want your business to leave the best first impression possible, custom website design services can provide a website for your business that includes well-designed and responsive landing pages to maximize the success of your display ads.

Rely On a Trusted Digital Marketing Agency for Display Advertising

Creating an impactful campaign is easier said than done, even with helpful tips and best practices. With the creative minds of iFocus Marketing on your side, all the difficulty of crafting effective targeted display advertising campaigns suddenly disappears. Schedule a time to chat with us about how we can help you reach your goals with our customized, integrated marketing services.

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