Consumers visually engage with native ads 52% more frequently than with traditional banner ads, according to a new study from Sharethrough and the IPG Media Lab.

The study, titled Benchmarking the Effectiveness of Native Ads, used surveys and eye-tracking technology to measure ad impact for major brands.

Among the key findings of the study, which reports the results of both a survey and an eye-tracking study:

  • Native ads registered an 18% higher lift for purchase intent, and 9% higher lift for brand affinity, than banner ads. 
  • Consumers looked at in-feed native ad placements 25% more than banner ad units.
  • 32% of respondents said a native ad "is an ad I would share with a friend or family member" versus just 19% for banner ads.
  • 71% of consumers viewing native ads who had previously bought a product from an advertiser said the brand was one they "personally identify with," compared with just 50% for banner ads. 


 Also, consumers viewed native ad units and original editorial content nearly identically. In fact, a slightly higher percentage of people tracked looked at native ads (26%) versus editorial content (24%).


For more, check out the following infographic: 

 About the research: The study surveyed 4,770 people and used eye-tracking technology to assess the visual attention of 200 consumers. The effectiveness of native ads vs. editorial content was measured by putting both in the exact same placement on a webpage and measuring respective engagement.

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image of Ayaz Nanji

Ayaz Nanji is a digital strategist and a co-founder of ICW Media, a marketing agency specializing in content and social media services for tech firms. He is also a research writer for MarketingProfs. He has worked for Google/YouTube, the Travel Channel, AOL, and the New York Times.

LinkedIn: Ayaz Nanji

Twitter: @ayaznanji