Your Basic Guide to Understanding Responsive Display Ads

Your Basic Guide to Understanding Responsive Display Ads

Julian Frachtman
Julian Frachtman

Chief Executive Officer, Airtory

Published on: 20 Nov 2023

Reading time: 4 minutes

The rise of smartphones, tablets, and similar devices has increased internet accessibility for a wider audience. However, while the adoption of such devices made the lives of many people easier, it poses several challenges for advertisers, as ads now need to be adapted to various displays and devices as well. To overcome this challenge, where ads must be adapted for varying screen sizes, responsive display ads were introduced. Responsive ads are basically an ad format that is designed to automatically adjust their appearance to fit the device on which they are being viewed. In the ever-changing digital landscape, responsive display ads help ensure that brands can maintain a strong online presence and connect with their audiences across various platforms and devices.

What are Responsive Display Ads?

All advertisers should know what are display ads, as they have proved to be one of the most effective ad formats for brand awareness, increasing conversions, and much more, using images, animations, audio, and video. Responsive ads take the concept a step further, bringing in more convenience for advertisers. Responsive display ads are a form of online advertising units that are designed to adapt automatically for various devices. 

Also known as adaptive ads, these ads automatically adjust their size, format, and appearance to fit the device and screen they are being viewed on. This means that a single responsive display ad can be served to a larger audience without having to worry about the form factor. This not only improves the user experience but also the ad performance, leading to higher engagement and conversions. The best examples of responsive display ads generally include a variety of elements like text, images, and even video. Responsive ads can be a great way to reach new audiences and increase a brand’s reach.

Advantages of Responsive Display Ads

Flexible Ad Format

Responsive display ads are dynamic, and they can automatically adjust their size to suit the display and device screen on which they are being served in real-time. This dynamic adaptability is an important benefit of responsive display ads. A single responsive display ad can be created and served across desktop websites and mobile websites or on tablets, using programmatic advertising platforms, ensuring an optimized user experience, every time. Responsive ads successfully allow advertisers to maximize their reach and impact across a wider audience.

Cost Effective

Another key benefit of responsive display ads is their cost-effectiveness. They simplify the ad creation process significantly. Instead of having to design multiple ad variations for different devices and advertising platforms, advertisers only need to create a single programmatic ad unit which is then optimized for display in real-time. One simply needs to build their ad with the chosen images, headlines, descriptions, logos, CTAs, etc. and they can set it up for automatic generation of variations for particular devices as and when the ad is displayed to a user. This significantly reduces the time and resources required for ad production.

Easy to Create

The best display advertising platforms offer advertisers access to ad builders, with the tools and capabilities they need to create responsive display ads. The best examples of responsive display ads are based on dynamic creative optimization or DCO, which is a feature that advertisers can access with the right ad builder that offers several templates, drag-and-drop ad builder, programmatic ad creation, and more for building responsive display ads. Additionally, these ad platforms also generate universally compatible ad tags and allow you to track ad performance with ease.

Measuring Performance

Measuring the success of an advertising campaign is essential. Responsive ads come with built-in analytics that allows advertisers to track and measure the performance of their ad campaigns. Ad performance can easily be tracked by the number of impressions and the CTR of the responsive ads, which also allows advertisers to optimize their ad campaign in real time for better results.

Best Practices

Pay Attention to the Images Used

It is important to keep in mind that your images will resize automatically based on the device where they are displayed. Images are easily visible across larger screens but on smaller devices, it may be harder for users to discern the intended message. That is why advertisers should be careful about the visual elements they use for their responsive ads. The creative should be easy to understand even in small displays and the images should not be overprocessed. 

Utilize Available Data 

Responsive ads are a very valuable ad format for testing the effectiveness of your online ad campaigns. As these ads involve a variety of sizes and formats that are displayed to an expansive audience base, the ad performance can provide a comprehensive overview, helping you understand what is working and what is not working for your target audience. Apart from being able to optimize the campaign in real-time for better results, you can also gain important insights for strategizing your future campaigns.

Ultimately, there is no one-size-fits-all approach when it comes to digital marketing but by using responsive ads in your online campaigns, advertisers can experiment with a number of approaches to find the strategy that works best for their brand.

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