Interstitial Ads: Best Practices for Maximizing ROI

Interstitial Ads: Best Practices for Maximizing ROI

Ashwin Krishnakumar
Ashwin Krishnakumar

Chief Technology Officer, Airtory

Published on: 16 Aug 2023

Reading time: 3 minutes

Generally served across mobile apps and websites, interstitial ads are quite common in digital marketing and almost everyone comes across one at some point or the other. Interstitial advertising has managed to earn a name for itself, proving to be a highly effective and popular ad format that comes with high revenue generation potential. However, in digital advertising, the interstitial ad format must be used with extreme caution, ensuring that you preserve the user’s experience and browsing journey to deliver an engaging ad experience without becoming an annoying distraction.

What are Interstitial Ads?

First gaining renown among digital ad formats for mobile, interstitial ads refer to ads that cover the entire interface of the mobile screen or the webpage. However, instead of appearing in-between and covering the game, app, or webpage, interstitial ads show up at points of natural transition in the content or game. For example, interstitial ads may appear as a user is moving between levels in a game or is moving from one page to the next.

These ads can include various types of elements, ranging from plain text ads to rich media ads with image and video elements as well. Earlier, it was only mobile apps where interstitial ads could be seen, but with the many benefits they had to offer, the ad format has been widely accepted and interstitial advertising can be seen across websites and web browsers as well.

Why Use Interstitial Advertising

Interstitial video ads have several benefits to offer, including:

  • High Viewability & Engagement Rates: being displayed across entire screens and being displayed for several seconds, this ad format gets higher viewability rates and more interactions as compared to other conventional ad formats. They also help overcome issues like banner blindness.
  • Multi-Platform Serving: This ad format is not limited to mobile anymore as examples of interstitial ads can now be seen across mobile and desktop devices, apps, browsers, and webpages as well.
  • High Impressions and High CPM: These are ads that cannot be missed by users. This makes them premium placements for advertisers who can count on increased impressions and for publishers who can get higher CPM for interstitial ads.

The Challenges

With great advantages come great risks as well. Incorrect application, usage, or placement of interstitial video ads can also be quite disadvantageous. This can include interrupting the user experience and becoming a bothersome occurrence, which causes people to leave the app or website or even attracting penalties for failing to comply with applicable recommendations and guidelines.

Best Practices

Ensuring certain best practices for your interstitial video, display, or rich media ad campaigns can help ensure high ROI while making sure you avoid the challenges and pitfalls of the same:

  • Prioritize User Experience: Set proper limits for displaying these ads, when they are displayed, etc. It is also important to pay attention to the placement of interstitial ads as well, with proper frequency capping being maintained.
  • Clear, Noticeable Close Buttons: While users may understand that some ads are necessary, timed ads with no exit buttons visible after the 5-second mark can be extremely annoying to them. Timed ads should clearly display how much time is left on the ad and after the 5-second mark, a skip or exit option should be made available. It is crucial to remember that hiding the exit button is among the worst things an advertiser can do today.
  • Using Rich Media: Rich media brings a plethora of options for advertisers to create better and more engaging and interesting ad campaigns. The interactive aspect of rich media ads allows advertisers to unleash their creative imaginations, integrating advanced interaction features to make it a memorable and enjoyable experience for the users as well. However, optimizing the page load speed accordingly should be a prime concern as well, as should the habit of having a static backup creative in place in case of slow connections.

What is NOT Allowed in Interstitial Advertising

Some things that all advertisers will do well to AVOID:

  • Ads that appear on an app load and exit.
  • Ad placements on apps that are running in the background.
  • Ads that appear too often.
  • Sudden and unexpected ad launches.
  • Un-skippable ads, even after the 5-second mark.

Interstitial advertising can be an engaging way to get your message across to your audience and can help overcome several marketing hurdles of the day. However, for the best results, it is important that advertisers use nothing but the best ad creation software, like Airtory, which allows them to not only create engaging ad experiences but also allows them to track ad performance in real-time, so changes can also be made in real-time to the live campaign to ensure success in digital marketing.

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