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Integral-Web-Page-Display-Ad-Clutter-in-H1-Sept2013More than 8 in 10 American adults believe that online ads are detrimental to their experience always (16%) or some of the time (66%) some of the time, according to a recent survey from Adblade. That echoes prior research from Adobe and Edelman Berland, in which consumers were most likely to describe online ads as “annoying” and “distracting.” Could clutter be a problem? New data from Integral Ad Science [pdf] indicates that 24% of impressions during the first half (H1) of the year landed on pages with more than 3 display ads.

Specifically, 76% of impressions land on pages containing 1-3 display ads, 16.4% on pages with 4-5 ads, 3.5% on pages with 6-7 ads, and 3.1% on pages with more than 10 ads. (The exact numbers for pages with 8-9 ads weren’t included as they were fractional.)

What’s interesting about those findings (beyond the data itself) is that traffic skewed slightly towards pages with a higher density of ads. That’s because 80.8% of the pages surveyed contained 1-3 display ads – but only 76% of impressions went to those pages.

Directly placed ads (which have the highest viewability and lowest incidence of fraud) also won out in terms of clutter. 86% of directly placed ads were on pages with 1-3 ads, while networks, exchanges, and hybrids all ranged between 46.4% and 48.7% of ads placed on pages with that few ads.

Returning to the Adblade survey, a majority of respondents indicated that the most obtrusive banner position is the middle of the page (66%), with fewer pointing to the top of the page (19%), right side of the page (10%) and end of the article (4%). 31% prefer websites to have sponsored third-party articles (advertorials) with no banner ads, compared to 24% who don’t. The remaining 45% don’t care.

About the Data: The Integral Ad Science data is based on global data, but is heavily skewed towards US data.

The Adblade survey was conducted by Toluna.com with a representative sample of 350 American adults who are fully registered and authenticated, with verified demographic information. The results were weighted to accurately reflect the American census as a whole.

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