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What do I need to know about setting up my business to sell advertising on its website?

By: Ed Fox



What do I need to know about setting up my business to sell advertising on its website? I’d like to address the following areas: selling the space, pricing, technology, categories, and contract.


Answer: The basic point in selling or obtaining business advertisers is the value it will provide to the specific business. Without high traffic statistics, you will need a strong marketing message about the purpose, target audience, and value of your website. Determine target audience, demographic, and other information to help demonstrate the potential value of advertising on your website. While you can send solicitations and/or introduction letters, you will likely need some form of a direct sales calling system to sell your advertising to target advertisers in addition to any direct mail and online marketing.

To develop a plan for locating potential advertisers, you can obtain ad selling, solicitation information, and other tools and suggestions through library publications and on websites like the following, which include a basic industry explanation on the importance of website traffic when selling online advertising:

Selling advertising and media kits:

B2B sales methods:

If you try to sell advertising directly, one of the first questions media buyers will ask is: How many monthly unique visitors or page views does your website obtain? Unless you have high traffic volume, they will not pursue you. Acquire traffic and you may begin to attract interested advertisers. This is a complex topic, but there are main three ways for businesses to increase traffic:

1. Search Rankings – A high ranking on search engines where people search for keywords. In part, you achieve this by step 2….

2. Links – Get links and recommendations to your website from other sites, blogs, social media, directories, etc.

3. Ads – Pay for advertising that attracts people to your site.

Website adverting rates: Website advertising rates vary widely based on the website visitor traffic volume, target advertisers, and other factors. For example, a new website with no historical visitor statistics may have to offer lower rates initially in order to attract advertisers. Basically, you will need to research the ad rates of your competitors and similar websites in order to set your own ad rates. The following are example of banner ad information for your consideration:

Example banner ad rate information:

Website monetization information:

Website development: We would need to see your website in order to give you any accurate technical information or instructions to place banner ads on your site. However, you may want to consider using the Google Ad tool initially to help boost your website traffic:

Website advertising contracts: For drafting advertising contracts with your lawyer, you can locate samples at Internet websites like the following:

Links and references to sample and template documents have been provided, but businesses should exercise caution in using such documents. Understand that not all templates are created equal, with many being created for a narrow set of requirements. A particular template will not be warranted to cover every provision that may be required by a particular set of business circumstances. Studying the language included in various samples and templates will improve your level of understanding related to the subject of your particular agreement and may help you articulate your business objectives related to an agreement, but be aware that most agreements should be prepared by your lawyer to provide greater assurance that your interests have been protected.

Published: September 11, 2013

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Ed Fox

Ed Fox is the Director of Technology for Tarkenton. To assure users of a rich online experience (whether they are customers, employees, partners, or suppliers for a business), Ed combines knowledge of coding language, development and design, content management, and other critical tools. He also focuses on creating an effective website through search engine optimization and a deep and thorough understanding of web analytics. Connect with him on .

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