We will talk about what contextual advertising is, how it works, what types of contextual advertising exist and how to start using it to please your business.
Brief description of contextual advertising
Advertising of this format may appear on an information site and be based solely on information about the interests of the user. For example, if you ve recently wanted to buy a bike, you ll see an ad for a bike store on a sports site. You have probably come across this and understand what is at stake. Almost any banner nowadays adapts to your history and online behavior.
The advantage of such advertising is to increase conversion due to the frequent intersection of user interests with the proposal in the ad.
Types of contextual advertising
Configuring ads to serve people with specific views and interests is available across multiple channels, including social media. But nevertheless, by tradition, it is customary to understand under contextual advertising exactly blocks with ads that appear either on websites that are part of an affiliate advertising network, or in search results.
The first is called thematic, and the second is a search engine. Next, we will consider both types in more detail.
These are the ads that you see in an article or in the sidebar of your favorite online store.
Often, such blocks are a continuation of the content on the page and allow advertisers to “get close” to a potential client at the moment when he is looking for a product that interests him and is most close to making a purchase.
Two mechanisms are responsible for the selection of advertising:
Adjusting algorithms for showing suitable ads to exactly those users who may be more interested in it than others. It is based on data from the user s search history and cookies, where almost the entire browser history is stored.
Publishing ads on sites whose content on the topic coincides with the content in the ad.
It also takes into account data about the pages visited and the user s interests from other sources that are part of partnerships with large advertising networks in the spirit of Yandex and Google.
From the name it is clear that users will contemplate such contextual advertising in the search results when they enter certain queries for which the display of ads is configured.
Each ad is contextual, as it contains content related to a search query and search results. In this case, the data associated with a specific user is not used.
An example of such advertising is the first links on Google after entering the name of a popular brand, for example. Often, competitors advertisements go to the first position, and only then the organic results that the user came for are displayed.
The main properties of contextual advertising
Only a potential client will see the banner. Algorithms have become so advanced that they hardly show users irrelevant content. Search engines know almost everything about users: food preferences, outlook on life, current interests, marital status, etc. That is why contextual advertising is so effective.
You can pay for each click on an advertisement as well as for targeted actions.
In Yandex.Direct and Google AdSense, you can clearly configure the financial component of an advertising campaign. Specify budget, cost per click cap, and other aspects.
More often, ads will be displayed for the business that pays the most. Nobody hides this.
But it s not just money that decides. Google and Yandex ad systems pay attention to ad quality and relevance. The offer in the banner should be truly attractive to the client, only then he will see it. Even if a competitor with a less relevant solution paid more.
Contextual advertising begins to generate profit immediately after the launch of the campaign.
Systems for setting up and publishing contextual advertising
There are two main platforms for advertising on the web. One was developed by Yandex, the second – by Google. Their competitors are too small, and it is often not very profitable to set up their networks.
The standard set of an ad includes a title, ad text, and a link to the site associated with the ad. The number of blocks may vary depending on the request. Sometimes the number of advertising links reaches 12 per page.
Examples of advertising
Advertising can be textual and displayed exclusively in search results, mimic organic results, or be displayed in a separate block called Yandex.Direct. On websites, advertisements take the form of standard rectangular information blocks.
Also, ads purchased from YAN will be displayed on all resources included in the advertising network (Yandex partners) and in the corporation s proprietary services. For example, in Yandex.Maps, where people often look for services and organizations. And also contextual advertising appears there, even if the user does not apply to the service with a specific request.
How to set it up and does it make sense?
To set up advertisements in Yandex, you need to create a profile in the YAN and set up an ad selection algorithm. In the ad settings, you can choose where exactly the selected banners will be displayed, how often and for which users.
The cost of a click on such an advertisement ranges from 30 kopecks and more. It all depends on many factors, including the audience you choose. The minimum budget required to launch an advertising campaign is 1000 rubles.
Both large companies and small businesses have already published a lot of cases in which they shared the success stories of promotion at the expense of YAN. Well-tuned contextual advertising in Yandex noticeably increases conversion among users from the Russian Federation.
Advertising in Google Ads practically does not differ from that in Yandex. The second search engine probably borrowed the format from the first, so there are few differences. They appear in the same places, at about the same volume, and in other search engines (for example, Bing from Microsoft)
Examples of advertising
Ads appear at the top of organic search results, in the same listing along with other search results. They differ only in a small Ad signature under the link.
Ads on the site can be either just text or banners with images.
Setting up ads on Google
To set up advertisements on Google, you need to create an account on the Adsense network. This is the largest advertising network, and it shows itself quite effectively everywhere, regardless of the region and the chosen audience.
The cost of a click on one banner from the AdSense system costs $ 0.01. Plus there is no minimum budget.
Advertising in Google Adsense is extremely effective because it involves a huge number of partners displaying banners created in the Google advertising network in their communication channels. These include resources like Bing and Mail.ru, as well as a large number of mobile app developers who embed ads in their products instead of paying (a common feature of video games for iOS and Android).
Also, this advertisement will be seen by users of Google services, and one of the most popular sites on the planet, YouTube, is among them.
That s all. Contextual advertising is a popular mechanism for interacting with the audience. With proper configuration, it can significantly increase the conversion of the resource. But this requires a good specialist who is able to select the right audience and optimize other aspects of the advertising campaign so that advertising costs do not exceed the bottom line.