Having a business website raises some new questions. For instance, should your own website carry paid advertisements?
Such ads — whether banners ("permanent" ads that occupy a fixed position on a business website or business web page: think of them like magazine or newspaper space-ads, and as part of the website) or text-only ad-links ("temporary" ads that are placed on your own website by ad serving companies that match the likeliest interests of your customers and visitors to advertisers and provide appropriate ads) deserve careful consideration. In both cases, your business website generates revenue when one of your customers or visitors clicks on an ad and is transferred to the advertiser's own business website.
There are advantages and disadvantages to accepting such pay per click (PPC) advertising on your own website. Let's get the disadvantages out of the way first:
- The Popup Problem: Popup ads — the ones that appear as overlays on top of your own Web site, have long been controversial. This is because most users don't like them and numerous pop-ups are actually blocked (or attempted to be blocked) by most Web browsers.
- Ads Take Space: Even simple text-only ad-links will occupy some of your business Web site's screen "real estate." Banner ads, of course, take even more space.
- Ads Distract: The messages you send with your own business Web site should be the heart of your own Web site's efforts. Advertisements may distract your customers' attention from your message (especially with strong and "hard-sell" ad-lines) and, as we'll see in the next item, can actually cost you business.
- You Only Get Paid If Your Customers Go Away: Before you get paid — generally a few cents per advertisement by the advertisers, your customers and visitors to your website have to click on the advertisement. This results in your visitor getting linked from your business website to somebody else's.
Now a look at the positives of PPC advertising:
- Some Business Websites Are Perfect For PPC Advertising: If you are in the information or content business — perhaps you publish a web-based magazine, or offer online hints and tips as part of your real-world interior design (for example) business, your own Web site might be ideal for advertising, whether banners from your own vendors or product manufacturers you recommend, or relevant text-only ad-links and Pay Per Click® (PPC) advertisements. If your website could benefit from paid advertising, incorporate advertising space into your overall website design and building efforts.
- It's Easy To Get Started: Especially with text-only pay per click advertisement links, the internet advertising industry has made getting started a snap (or a click!) Most of the major search engines — Google®, Yahoo®, etc. — offer simple programs that will add your business website to the other webpage destinations for their PPC ads.
- You Can Generate Revenue: And in the case of high traffic volume business websites, the revenue, even at a few cents' per pay per click advertising, rates can add up.
Finally, the decision on whether or not to accept pay per click advertising on your own website rests with you — your tastes and preferences, your business objectives, and more importantly, your sense of how your customers will feel about and their propensity to respond to advertising on your business' website.