The Rise of AdBlocking and What It Can Mean for Your Business
Have you ever been browsing the Internet and been annoyed when advertisements prevent you from seeing the content you were looking for? If so, you’re not alone; and you’re also probably not using an AdBlocking program. AdBlocking is exactly what it sounds like—software that can be downloaded onto your computer in order to block advertisements from popping up while you’re browsing. It’s actually an old technology, but it is being talked about more and more because of a new development from Apple that directly impacts mobile browsing.
When Apple launched iOS9 they also introduced a more complex content blocking capability for mobile. What this means is that application developers will now have a much easier time creating apps that can block ads, and mobile users will now be able to download AdBlocking software directly to their mobile devices in the form of an app. This latest development put the term “ad blocking” on the map and made everyday people much more aware of it’s existence, despite the fact that desktop AdBlocking has been around for quite a long time. Morphing into mobile opens up a whole new playing field that is bad news for business owners. Read below to find out how the rise of AdBlocking may affect your business and what you can do to prevent a loss in revenue.
How AdBlocker May Affect You
It Will Hurt Web Publishers and Users
Online publishers are people who own websites, and they make the majority of their income through advertising. Publishers charge businesses each time their advertisement gets a view on their website. With AdBlocking in effect, the ads won’t be visible so people won’t view them, and thus publishers won’t get paid. If the publishers aren’t making any money that will most likely limit their ability to provide content for free, thereby hurting users as well.
Small Businesses See the Worst Effects
Large businesses that spend a ton of money on advertising won’t suffer from AdBlocking nearly as much as small businesses with small marketing budgets. If even 10% of users install AdBlocking software on their mobile devices, that could mean a significant loss in revenue for small businesses who depend on ads to get the word out about their product(s). In addition, if you own a small business and you’ve spent most of your time and advertising budget on ads designed for a specific, small target audience you may be in even more trouble. The larger your audience is, the less AdBlocking will hurt you. Unfortunately it’s been a best practice for small businesses for a while to gear their ads toward a tailored audience.
Digital Media Companies that Depend on Advertising Will Also Suffer
Right now the percentage of people using AdBlocking software for mobile is still low (about 4.3 million people), though it’s expected to increase dramatically based on it’s usage rates in other countries (approximately 159 million people in China currently use mobile AdBlocking software). If it reaches the same level of usage here that desktop users are experiencing, digital media companies that require advertising for revenue are going to be in big trouble. According to Business Insider, these companies could lose out on as much as $9.7 billion dollars.
3 Tips to Navigating around AdBlocker for Your Business Successfully
Increase Your Use of Native Advertising and Sponsored Content
This type of advertising doesn’t look or feel like a typical ad, and so people generally aren’t bothered as much by it. If you make this a large part of your business plan, chances are your customers won’t feel the need to download AdBlocking software because they won’t feel like they’re being inundated by advertisements while searching for content. In addition, sponsored content is way to make everyone happy; consumers get the content they’re looking for, and businesses still have access to a large audience.
Revert Back to Using Embedded Links and Dedicated Ads
Embedded links are exactly what they sound like—links to advertisements and websites that are already set in the text. Sure there is a chance that the reader won’t click on them, but there’s a better chance that they will as opposed to an ad that they won’t even see if they’ve downloaded AdBlocking software. In addition, dedicated ads are another old-school approach to advertising that may become more popular. They are built into the page as an image as opposed to being delivered by a server, and so they won’t respond to the current technology present in AdBlocking programs.
Give People Control Over the Ads They See
As annoying as it is to constantly have to close advertisements while you’re browsing, being overwhelmed by ads that don’t relate to, or interest you, are even worse. Facebook, a company that relies heavily on advertising to support its business, is going to try to fight the rise of AdBlocking by giving their users more control over the ads that they see while they’re using the site. Facebook users will be able to customize the advertisements they see based on criteria like brand and type of business. In addition, they’re trying to limit the number of “clickbait” stories that appear on the site. Facebook generated $6.2 billion dollars in revenue from advertising in the most recent quarter, and so they have a lot to lose if this strategy doesn’t work out.
Now that you know how AdBlocking may affect your business, how are you going to diversify your marketing plan to combat this change? Comment in the section below and let us know what has worked for you.
Feature Image: techcrunch.com
Image Credit: iab.com