A banner ad is one form of advertising used online. The idea behind a banner ad is that the advertisement is embedded (made part of) a web page. Every time a person goes to that web page, he or she will see the banner ad. The banner ad is linked to the web site of the advertiser, and if a user clicks on the ad, he or she is redirected to the web site.
Banner ads take on various forms. One of the most common forms is an image. This could be in different formats: JPEG, GIF, or PNG. Banner ads may also be more advanced and make use of Java, Shockwave, or Flash. These kinds of banner ads usually include animation and sound, making them more attractive to users.
How does the whole concept of banner ads work? As mentioned above, users who click on a banner ad are directed to the web site of the advertiser. Naturally, this benefits the advertiser as his web site receives more traffic. The end goal is to convert those clicks and turn the user into customers.
On the part of the web site owner that shows the banner ads, he or she can earn on a CPC (cost per click) basis. That is, he or she gets paid for every user that clicks on the banner ad. There are also other payment schemes related to banner ads.