Usually easily blocked by using a proxy like Internet JUNKBUSTER. However, even if not blocked, most web surfers automatically tune them out. There was a study (sorry, no source) where they told the test subjects to find some information on a web page. Most of them didn't find it. The location? In an animated banner ad.

The story of every single banner you've ever seen

You don't need some study to discover that banner ads could be quite ineffective once you surf for a while.

Just try it yourself right now. Just remember, you are human, you are one identical sample of the greater test population from a biological point of view, we're testing human nature, not learned political siding.

This is how:

1. Just stop some times while you are surfing (and do so when you've already ignore the ad on your computer screen which we'll test you with), and see how much you can look kinda close to the ad without actually seeing the content, normally you are already concentrate on what you are reading so just keep concentrating.

2. Now, see how long you can only see what you see straight in front of you. Do you notice you can look pretty close to the border of such an ad without dismissing what you are concentrating originally?

Note: For step 2. you need an ad that doesn't flip every so often for this experiment, right-click a browser menu up on the ad to select the stop animation option is not what we want to do the test right--because then you'll see the picture--ruining the test. You can't be curious about something you aren't curious about. Let's test how you act out your motivation when you are still curious.)

3. Alas, notice how it's harder when the moment the ad moves? This is just the ad designer trying to trigger your simple, inexpensive, and probably genetic sense of curiosity. It works, due to this factor, it's harder to find an ad not flipping from one to the next every few seconds. Ads that don't flip often exist because it's easier to embed into websites that partner with the ad company.

It would be nice to choose a menu in your mind and shut off some behavior, but that's not physically possible. Advertisers count on this. When something always works, behaving as surely as a rock wanting to fall on the ground, advertisers grow to count on it and feel safer about incorporate that factor of human nature accordingly.

4. If you have the mental strength and high interest in what you are reading--it is easily to ignore a flashy ad 100 - 400 pixels between what you want to see and the nearest border of the banner. Not even a glance.

Some ads are even flashier, check out some of them and read on...

The flashier the ad (for example: one with fluid interesting animation), the easier it is to get at least a sub-second glimpse from you. Even a quick one, fraction of a second--to the advertiser--is all it takes.

So you give a quick sub-second glimpse. Where did that glimpse come from? Let's say as a common example of what seems like a car is flying at you a little bit too fast when you cross the street. In a sub-second moment you normally are eager to produce the time and attention for an natural calculation that proceeds like this:

These steps are equally useful for finding positive opportunities, like a woman screaming at the top of her lung over the noise to you on a better deal while you shop in a marketplace.

You use this natural reaction every today, goodness knows every moment, it's quite useful.

Advertisers count on this. Here's what they do in preparation for this particular statistically assured behavior during the entire dance of give and take of visiting an page with an ad.

They often design an ad so that every pane that they flash you can be instantly digested in a fraction of a second. They know what they say in that little moment matters. You could ignore it if everything goes wrong. They can't have this happen for an significant percentage of the audience. So they test on a test group beforehand. Usually the message or feeling you get can be categorized into the following:

5. How most people react to this type of predicament:

5.1 ...So then you're stuck, you can't get that tiny 4 word or simple picture of a message out of your head.

5.2 Then you look back maybe. The problem is maybe--it would be no problem if it's a No-I-Think-Not. The problem is that it's a maybe. A problem if you are bent on ignoring the ad. A solution if you're the advertiser.

5.3 And so we're first base...maybe... let's see if they can hit a home run.

5.4 They make sure the message makes sense when you feel a "maybe".

5.5 It does take some research (which equates to trial and error to really find out how people think--there's nothing sillier than 5 old man pretending to know how thousands will react to 4 words, read Claude C. Hopkins if you are unsure about how serious I mean by that statement about old men). And they have to try to make it crystal clear and easy to read in a fraction of a second. It takes some humbleness and please, no fancy words. Farmers and Coal miners, a few with as little as 4th grade education must be able to appreciate it as well as housewifes with two PHd's in Nuclear Physics.

And they count on the test, and those favorable statistical results. From all that sweating they hope to get something across into that little noggin in your head. They hope they have something in that critical glimpse.

6. Whether you click it or not is up to you.

And they lived happily ever after... The End.

When I have time I'll come fix up the grammar (ugh the run on sentences and simple tenses..) and spelling...sorry if it hurt to read!!

banner = B = banner site

banner ad n.

Any of the annoying graphical advertisements that span the tops of way too many Web pages.

--The Jargon File version 4.3.1, ed. ESR, autonoded by rescdsk.

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