Inline advertising (aka inline ads) is an additional way to drive revenue for content sides and business sites can use the same concept for inline calls to action.
What are inline ads?
Inline ads show up in the middle of the content. They are in the readers’ line of sight as they are reading the content. Here’s an example from the New York Times:
And the publication also shares inline calls to action to their own offerings, which is something any business with a good website storytelling strategy could do.
The best inline calls to action are highly relevant to the content that pulled people to that page in the first place. For example, Hotjar has an interesting article about heatmaps so the inline CTA (inline ad) is about trying Hotjar’s heatmap product.
Inline ads set up
I’ve been testing Google Ads as part of my inline advertising project, and it’s helped drive an increase in revenue from Google Ads.
The ad is created through code from my Google Adsense account. Head over there and set that up if you don’t have an account. Under “Ads.”
Then my longtime developer Matt Thiessen built a WordPress plugin for me that inserts the code after a certain paragraph. It allows me to direct after what paragraph the inline ad will show up. For example, after the fifth or sixth paragraph.
I try not to have it too high or too low in the content, though. An image align center with the top paragraph seems to be just fine.
How to create inline ads?
If you use Google Ads, you can directly create them in that system and then embed them. To create a visual ad, consider hiring a designer or using Canva.
Does inline advertising work?
Based on the numbers Google sent me, I would say they are worth trying. Consider Google Ads or sponsor ads if that’s your business model. And if your business model is to raise product awareness through content marketing, consider this inline advertising strategy to drive clicks to those high-impact areas.
Content marketer or publisher, I would advise that you’ll try them if you aren’t.
Readers appear to tune them out less, so that’s a good thing. And, of course, remember to use them as part of your overall strategy. And if you are on the advertiser or content marketer side of this relationship, make sure your ads are optimized for conversion!