An eye-tracking study by Artificial Intelligence company GumGum has found that the most widely-used formats of mobile ads were “unnoticed”, as 1,200 trialed users scrolled through web content on their mobile phones.
The mobile ad formats in question were the most commonly-used Internet Advertising Bureau (IAB) formats, such as banners, which were only seen for an average of 1.43 seconds.
Banner ads which were permanently fixed at the bottom of the screen were even less effective according to the study, garnering just 0.8 seconds on average of viewing time.
With figures from eMarketer projecting that advertisers will spend over £139 billion on mobile in 2018, the findings highlight that billions of pounds could be wasted on ineffective advertising.
“Old ad standards simply aren’t working because consumers are becoming ‘banner blind’,” said Phil Schraeder, president and COO of GumGum.
“They’re so savvy about these formats, they’re willfully ignoring adverts online. It’s time for advertisers to consider new, rich media formats that are integrated into the content we see online.”
While standardised IAB mobile ad formats did not perform well, the study - which created heat maps as a visual representation of where user attention was most concentrated - showed that ads integrated into the editorial performed best.
Users spent over 300% more on these integrated adverts – such as those dynamically tailored to the page where they are served – compared to the average of the standard IAB ads - and resulted in a 50% boost in consumer brand recall.
The question of whether mobile advertising is matching the pace of a “mobile-first world” was raised recently on PerformanceIN by Marfeel’s Alexian Chiavegato, who claimed the reality of advertising on mobile “trails far behind the glory”.