The Hostway Blog

In-Text Ads

The prevalence of display banners and text ads has made all but the most annoying online ads nearly transparent to online users. To stand out from the crowd, some marketers are turning to a simple, relevant and transparent advertising format: the text link.

In-text ads insert hyperlinks into ordinary Web site content around keywords in order to trigger advertising.

Many online marketers have recognized the benefit of in-text ads. Amazon offers in-text ads to all of its affiliates. By placing a few lines of JavaScript on each page of their Web site, affiliates can build revenue by integrating links to products sold on Amazon.com. Keywords that appear in their Web site content (authors, book titles, and brand names) automatically link to product pages on Amazon. Like Konetera, Amazon also integrates pop-up ads on mouse-over that include product name, image, rating and price.

The benefits of in-text ads aren't without cost, though. Sites using in-text ads tend to load slower (as in-text ads are integrated) and can make pages less user-friendly. For example, as users scroll down the page they may inadvertently cause ads to flash on/off. And while the ads begin subtly as text links, some users are offended by the sudden appearance of uninvited multimedia ads in the middle of their computer screen.

A less risky, and more promising, use of in-text advertising is available without the use of pop-ups. In addition to attracting customers without use of pop-up ads, this approach allows marketers to organically grow their Web site's link popularity and search engine ranking by gaining incoming links that search engines can't identify as ads.


Winmark Business Solutions (WBS) is a free Web site for small businesses and entrepreneurs containing over 6,000 pages of business-critical information and downloadable tools at www.WBSonline.com. WBS is a division of Winmark Corporation, a multi-brand franchisor with nearly 900 franchise locations in North America. With over 25 years working with small businesses, WBS draws upon years of experience to bring important small business articles, information, tools, forms, checklists, calculators and downloadable forms.