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Leaderboard location, what's your experience?

     
5:11 am on Aug 19, 2019 (gmt 0)

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Have you guys found that a leaderboard does better at the very very top, above the logo and below the address bar? Or between the navigation and content (assuming horizontal navigation)?

Example:

Logo tagline
---------------------------
Navigation
---------------------------
Leaderboard ad
---------------------------

Content

---------------------------

I currently have one beneath the navigation and it's getting OK results, but I worry that it's pretty intrusive. I could move it to the very top but that requires a bit of CSS modification, so it's not a simple thing unless you guys think it will make more money?
8:23 am on Aug 19, 2019 (gmt 0)

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As usual, it will perform differently from one site to another. For example, "in my case", I found out that I have better results, by putting my ads "bellow" the fold, for not saying at the bottom of the page.

"My" "theory" is that, if the content of the page is "interesting", people will focus on the content and read it, without paying much attention to the ad above the fold, and by consequence, this will be the ads after the content which will get the most attention, once the content has been read. In other words, people are not going to leave the page (clicking an ad) before finishing reading the content, (if the content is interesting), however, once the content is read, they might be interested in going elsewhere.

Again, each site will perform differently for all kind of reason, or for no logical reason too.
8:27 am on Aug 19, 2019 (gmt 0)

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We find that leaderboard at the very top of the screen generally performs pretty poorly on desktop. A high proportion of users seem to immediately scroll down a little, often moving leaderboard out of view before a creative has even loaded. This lowers viewability quite significantly (or CTR is you are being paid for clicks). We do still use top of page on some sites, but this driven more by aesthetic and ux issues.

A tool like Mouseflow can be useful to gauge where units are likely to get more attention.
9:53 am on Aug 19, 2019 (gmt 0)

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We find that leaderboard at the very top of the screen generally performs pretty poorly on desktop. A high proportion of users seem to immediately scroll down a little, often moving leaderboard out of view before a creative has even loaded.

Indeed. Also, try yourself, when you reach a page, where are your eyes going ? You'll notice that you barely never really look at the very top of a page, you start around the first 1/3 of the screen.

"In the past", a leaderboard at the very-very top of the page was considered "good" (from earning point of view) because :

1- this format was the one with the higher inventory (it was the heir of the good old 468x60). Now, higher inventory goes to formats like 300x250.

2- ads were loading synchronously, meaning the leaderboard was loading and showing before the remain of the page.

3- it was believed that, being right under the address bar, it will get a much higher exposure, ... however, the average joe no longer use the address bar, to type URLs , and no one will scroll up to the page again, before using the address bar. Which brings another point, the longer a page is , the less the ads at the top will perform well.

[edited by: Dimitri at 9:55 am (utc) on Aug 19, 2019]

9:54 am on Aug 19, 2019 (gmt 0)

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Most cases it will depend on device more than anything.

I fall back on my days of PRINT MEDIA ... where do you stick an ad and not lose the reader at the same time?
11:42 pm on Aug 19, 2019 (gmt 0)

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Just put the 728 in a sticky horizontal navigation. Can't scroll away from that.
8:34 am on Aug 20, 2019 (gmt 0)

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Just put the 728 in a sticky horizontal navigation. Can't scroll away from that.

We run a custom format that works a lot like that, but with less negative user reaction. It's a sticky masthead banner that uses a parallax type effect to scroll more slowly out of view as the user scrolls down the page. Because we fill it with CPM ads rather than CPC we get great viewability results without users feeling like we're cramping their screen. Works on mobile too.
2:00 pm on Aug 20, 2019 (gmt 0)

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I fall back on my days of PRINT MEDIA ... where do you stick an ad and not lose the reader at the same time?


With a background in graphic design and product photography I would appreciate looking at prints ads in magazines. But, I don't see how to get that same level of design and attention on a website, especially mobile devices.

The Adsense ads I observe are awful in design and I don't think any placement is going to make much of a difference in grabbing a readers attention.