Five Reasons to Consider Native Ads for Your Mobile Website

Igor Korobka leads Ad Sales at Epom Market a mobile advertising exchange that connects both supply and demand-side partners across an international network of inventory.  

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Native advertising has gained the status of a real monetization juggernaut. Over the last couple of years, it has been driving the revenues of top-tier news sites and social networks. Major publishers, such as Forbes and New York Times, use native along with display ads to create well-balanced and impactful ad experiences. To help website owners keep up with this industry trend, Epom Market has added native support to its portfolio.

Native ads combine brand message with audience-centric content. Along with the ability to blend into website design, these features are particularly beneficial for mobile publishers. Taking a closer look at the key advantages of native ads will prove useful for publishers, who are searching for new and effective ways to monetize their mobile inventory.

Enhanced Performance

Ample statistic data provides a solid case for native advertising. These ads demonstrate up to 10x higher click-through rates (CTR) when compared to banners. Native can also lead to a 281% increase in purchase intent, enabling publishers to run successful cost-per-click (CPC) and cost-per-action (CPA) campaigns with fewer impressions. This makes native ads optimal for mobile web-pages that have limited space for creatives.

Furthermore, a neuroscience and eye-tracking study from Nielsen Group showed that tablet users focus their attention on in-feed native ads twice longer than on similarly placed banners.  Although this research focuses on a single placement pattern, its results have a wide spectrum of practical implications. In particular, it proves that we can combine in-feed placement for native units with the optimal banner locations for a diversified ad impact.

Subtler Ad Experience

Native aims at copying the UX of editorial, non-sponsored media. While a typical banner is placed into the site content, a native ad presents content in itself. By creating high-quality branded articles, videos, or image creatives, advertisers strive to provide the audience with the value of editorial content. Instead of interrupting the user’s activities, native ads offer activities of the same kind. As on-site sessions are shorter on mobile than on desktop, less interruption is the key to better mobile user experiences.

While native reduces interruption, successful display advertising often relies on natural pauses in user activity. A banner between two blocks of information or an interstitial dividing the levels of a game are good examples of the UX associated with display advertising. Publishers can maximize the impact of served ads by combining these two approaches.

Cohesive Aesthetics

In terms of design, most native formats mimic their environment. Much like blog posts, they attract users with headlines rather than vivid images and animations. A pleasant side-effect of this approach is cohesive design: native ad units often seem integral to the overall aesthetic of the website. Although they sometimes lack the visual impact of high-quality banners, native ads are easier to integrate into the confined space of a mobile site.

In most cases, native ads resemble news feed elements, recommended article blocks, full-length posts, etc. To help site visitors distinguish ads from content, publishers mark creatives as “sponsored” or “promoted”. Sometimes they also use a background color that differs from other site components.

Simpler Ad Operations

Advertising organizations put a lot of effort into the standardization of native ad trading. The extensive regulation of the native ad market enables safe, hassle-free deals for both publishers and advertisers.

Another positive aspect of thorough regulation is the site-level optimization of native ads. In the case of native units from networks, ad optimization often comes down to inserting the ad tag into the site code. Essentially, this process is familiar to any publisher who is used to working with standard display ads.To further aid website owners, ad networks often provide them with placement recommendations for both desktop and mobile sites.

Greater Inventory Value

Native advertising is already a major trend for desktop platforms, but it hasn’t yet reached its full potential on mobile. According to eMarketer and inMobi, less than 40% of marketers used the native mobile advertising channel in 2014. In a nutshell, this means digital marketers didn’t have comprehensive mobile and cross-platform strategies for native advertising.

However, the same source states that 36% of brands and 32% of agencies are ready to increase their native mobile budgets by 25-50% over the next two years. By optimizing their websites to meet this growing demand for mobile native ad space, publishers will increase the value of their inventory.

Bottom Line

Native has presented banners with a tough competition on desktop, and is about to unravel its potential on mobile. As advertisers gain more experience with native mobile campaigns the conditions become favourable for publishers to enter this market segment. High engagement levels, subtle design, and deep integration into the site UX are the key reasons for publishers to consider native as a worthwhile monetization solution.

Given its numerous advantages, native may be beneficial for smartphone and tablet screens that accommodate fewer ads than larger PC displays. While native ads don’t necessarily outperform display advertising on every site and in every location, it would be wise for publishers to give them a try. In most cases, the optimal approach would be to test native units instead of the banner placements with lower performance, while leaving the most effective display ads in their place.

Thanks to Igor for the insights and for more visit the Epom Market website here.