Google Display Banners 101: Sizes & Types

Online advertisement is managed by several different entities all over the Internet. One of the largest examples of such an entity is Google Ads (it was also called Google AdWords for a while). Google Ads is a massive online advertising platform that offers a plethora of different features that are mostly centered around online advertisement – including placing advertisements within search engines, putting ads into videos, mobile apps, regular websites, and so on.

The sheer popularity and size of Google Ads as a platform resulted in it being able to work with a long list of different banner standards – from old to new, and from universally effective to banners for very specific use cases.

While it is technically possible for a company to use many different ad types and formats, it’s a massive waste of resources and efforts. A wise advertisement campaign knows its target audience and knows which ad types would be the most efficient in their specific case.

This kind of knowledge is priceless, but it’s also important to understand what is a display advertisement before going into different types of sizes of these ads. As the name suggests, display ads are advertisements that are displayed on different websites – the ones regular Internet users see all the time when they’re not searching for something specific. The “display” part of this definition means that the ads are “displayed” alongside the site’s actual contents.

Google Ads offers two general display ad types: static ads and responsive ads. Static image ads cannot adapt to different advertisement slots and are not the default choice of the Google Display Network as a whole. Responsive display ads can adjust themselves to fit a lot of standard ad spaces, making them much more versatile than your regular static ads – which is why responsive ads are recommended by default by Google themselves.

Using responsive display ads allows users to focus more on the ad optimization, leaving the matter of testing and optimizing different ad sizes to Google. That being said, the knowledge of different types of ads is still important in this context.

When it comes to desktop advertising with Google, there are many different ad types and sizes out there. Some ad types are relatively new, and others have been created years and years ago. Ad sizes also sometimes determine the placement of advertisements, with some ads performing better at the top of the page, and others doing their best while being inserted in-between paragraphs of the actual site’s content.

A list of the majority of Google display ad sizes – the ones that are currently used all over the Internet – is presented below:

Square – 250×250 px
Small square – 200×200 px
Billboard – 970×250 px
Leaderboard – 728×90 px
Banner – 468×60
Vertical banner – 120×240 px
Button – 125×125 px
Skyscraper – 120×600 px
Wide skyscraper – 160×600 px
Portrait – 300×1050 px
Large rectangle – 336×280 px
Half banner – 234×60 px
Medium rectangle – 300×250 px
Half page – 300×600 px
Small rectangle – 180×250 px
Large leaderboard – 970×90 px

Obviously, some of these ads tend to perform worse than others. For example, there’s a specific group of relatively small ads (small rectangle, button, small button, vertical banner, and half banner) that are just not big enough to be noticeable on the current monitors with FullHD definition and higher.

Other ads tend to perform worse simply because there’s a limited supply of such ads, such as skyscraper, billboard, large leaderboard, and such. Additionally, some ad types are used only within a specific country, and not anywhere else – billboard (750×100 pixels), double billboard (750×200 pixels), and triple billboard (750×300 pixels) are extremely effective in Poland, vertical rectangle (240×400 pixels) is a well-known ad type in Russia, and netboard (580×400 pixels) being a Norway exclusive ad type with impressive performance.

Additionally, there’s one more category of ads that can be talked about – mobile ads. There are two groups of ads that exist in this category – universal ads, which can work with both mobile and desktop, and mobile-specific ads.

The mobile-specific group is relatively small, including only two ad types: mobile leaderboard (320×50 pixels) and large mobile banner (320×100 pixels). Both of those ad types are designed specifically to work on the screens of mobile devices, and nowhere else.
There’s a bit more variety when it comes to universal ads that can adapt to mobile screens: small square (200×200 pixels), square (250×250 pixels), and medium rectangle (300×250 pixels). All three of the above are small enough to be able to fit into both mobile and desktop ad spaces, while still being big enough to remain readable.

Conclusion

There are many different ad sizes and types that Google Ads can offer – for different devices and different use cases. But knowing which ad types perform the best among others is crucial knowledge that a lot of people should be aware of. When it comes to Google Ads and all of the previously mentioned ad types, Google themselves state that there are five ad types that perform the best in different circumstances –  “Leaderboard” (728×90 pixels), “Large rectangle” (336×280 pixels), Medium rectangle” (300×250 pixels), Large mobile banner” (320×100 pixels) and “Half page” (300×600 pixels).