I've noticed the same problem over and over again with various animated banners I've come across, so I thought I would take a moment to explain my point of view.

With a lof of flash banners nowadays, I've noticed various fade in and transition effects come into play. What people fail to do, however, is make sure that EVERY single frame includes the company's logo and (unless it's blatantly obvious) a demonstration of what the site offers.

Banners are mainly used for branding nowadays. And, it goes without saying, that when doing banner advertising on a site, you only have a split section to catch a user's attention before they scroll right down the page past the banner. Do you really want that split second to be just as your logo is starting to fade into view as the fancy animation that offers no informative benefit to the web surfer spirals away??

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I agree. I think that if people are going to use flash banners, they can have flashy (ha ha, Flash) animations, but they need to have their logo displayed all the time, otherwise the point is entirely defeated.

That's my view,

Are flashy ads designed to cure banner blindness?

Eye tracking studies indicate that experienced websurfers are equipped with banner blindness, whereas the eye is trained to focus on the content of the page, and the banner ads gets little eye exposure. That's why Adsense, YPN, etc, and text link ads are so successful - because people confuse them with actual content. (However people are starting to develop a new syndrome called text link box blindness.)

Thus a banner really needs to stand out nowadays to capture a visitor's attention. Flashy banners may be extremely annoying, but may achieve the purpose of attracting the visitor's eye.

No matter what types of new advertising venues are introduced, people will eventually, over time, develop a blindness to them. 468x60 static gif banners worked amazing back in the day. Flash banners are starting to develop banner blindness now, which is why advertisers are turning towards Eyeblaster, expandables, and other forms of rich media.

Besides a constant logo a clear "close" button is the utmost - I remember more the advertisers that have float-ins and such which do not show clear close buttons (at the expected upper right hand corner), then the ones without. And I remember them very negatively.

@ JewBoy
hey quite good information provided about eye tracking.
This system is currently being developed to a great extent to be used in lot more applications.
Check out http://itpalace.com/?p=16 for more information on Eye tracking Technology.

In my point of view, everyday surfers are blind to all kind of banners whether its flash or static ones, text based ads are the best nowadays, wonder what would work a few years later..hmm..

I think there are two completely opposite approaches to website building at present time. The first one is functional minimalism (think of Google front page). And the second one is that media rich website type, that is trying to be your interactive movie on demand (see most of those Webby Award candidates). And, of course, there are plenty in between.

The same goes for users - some are "quick and busy" visitors that indeed wouldn't wait for some fading to complete before scrolling down or even leaving the page, and some are enjoying all that media and effects. I personally prefer the first type, but according to Webby Awards team, I'm a minority these days :)

Wow. all very interesting comments on banner ads. I myself make banners and it's good to know, as you call it "banner blindness". I did some for sony a few years ago called stomp the spider. Some samples of these banners can be seen at my website, http://www.animotionarts.com/banners.html I find that 'game interactive' is a great way to encourage users to click to see what it's all about. But you're right, you must keep the product logo clear and present:)

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