Top Mobile Ad Format and Sizes for Advertising Campaigns

Almost 65% of digital media is consumed on mobile indicating that mobile advertising is significant for brands and advertisers. But as an advertiser, what are the best mobile ad formats and sizes for your advertising campaigns?
 There is no such thing as a universal ad format that works for all, rather it’s more important to know the available types of ads for mobile and understand how each works.

Standard Banner Ad

Let’s start off with the Standard Banner Ad. The Standard Banner Ad is the most popular advertising format to date. Usually in a 320 x 50 or 300 x 50 pixels banner, the ad can be static and also animated. It usually clutters the top or the bottom of the screen resulting in ineffective and accidental clicks. However, if implemented in the proper context it can be non-intrusive and does not interrupt the user experience. Unfortunately, this also makes the ad fall into banner blindness, a habit where users developed an unconscious resistance to the banner.


Another weakness of the Standard Banner Ad is when a user taps on a banner, they’ll be redirected to a landing page, leaving the content or app they are on, thus disrupting the user experience.
To mitigate the user experience problem, you can switch to an expandable ad that doesn’t disrupt the user experience. Banner ads are versatile, quick to produce and deploy, however it generates the least earnings among the ad types. Big brands can leverage on its minimal space without the need for additional information as they are known, but emerging brands need to put a lot of information into the tiny ad space which usually ends up with cluttered content.To make this ad format work, your banner design needs a careful balance with subtle eye-catching content, yet not too distracting from the app experience. Highlight a key feature or main offering with a clear call to action and avoid putting too and much text and bright colors.

Interstitial Ads

Interstitial ads are visual that cover the entire mobile screen at the size of 320 x 480 pixels.
This the most popular size as it allows for more context, clearer call to action and allows more creative content such as videos, a store locator, and many others. Interstitials can offer animated and interactive rich media content, allowing more engagement on your ads, brand performance lift, and recall.


Here are three interstitial sizes available:
  • 320 x 480 pixels size.
  • 300 x 400 pixels size.
  • 300 x 250 pixels size.
An interstitial ad usually appears during crucial moments during mobile navigation, such as opening an app, browsing between pages or in between games. It requires a user action, typically to click a button to close the ad or swipe to navigate to the desired content. Interstitials are effective because it has a large space for your ad content and it has an ability to grab a user’s attention, especially when its shown full screen on mobile.
Furthermore, you don’t have to worry about mistaken clickthroughs as it only appears between pages while an app is in use. According to many advertising experts, interstitials ads are best placed within games with levels.The natural break in gameplay between levels allows interstitials to appear unobtrusively without interrupting the user experience. Never push out an interstitial ad in the middle of a game.
Interstitials performance has been reported to be good, with 2-3x higher click-through rates and it also produces better conversions as compared to standard banner ads. The downside to interstitials is that it can be highly intrusive, in the case of bad placement. It also requires more upfront design work and proper planning on proper placement. But with proper placement and planning, will be rewarding for your ad campaign.

Expandable Ads

The expandable ad is a type of rich media ad that is a combination of the banner and interstitial ad. Its starts with a 320×50 pixels teaser banner and increases in sizes usually at 320×480 pixels when a user tap on it. There are other expandable ad sizes you can explore, from 320×50 pixels and 300×50 pixels that expands to 320x480pixels, 300×400 pixels, 300×250 pixels & 320×320 pixels.


An expanded ad is effective because the teaser banner is not intrusive, taking up only a small space until a user tap-to-expand it. The expanded ad then offers a large area for advertisers to deliver the intended advertising message which can be filled with ad creatives like videos and other interactives. Users will get a good ad experience as the expansion appears right on the app itself, rather than bringing them to a landing page.
Additionally, a study from John Lewis and the IAB found that users exposed to expandable banners were 25% more likely to recall an ad than users exposed to static banners. Implementing expandable ads may seems like a difficult task, but it’s actually quite straightforward. The process of implementing it is quite similar to other banner ads. Just make sure to get reliable ad vendors to do the rendering during ad serving.

sarah ali

sarah ali

Sarah is a passionate writer and blogger. As an early adopter, she enjoys trying out new social media and Internet tools along with WordPress plugins and Web apps.
sarah ali

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