Top 16 Standout Display Ads of 2023

What Are Display Ads?

Display ads are a form of online advertising that includes text, images, videos, or other interactive elements. They are displayed on websites, social media platforms, and mobile apps as banners, pop-ups, or other ad formats.

Display ads are visual promotions that appear on websites, social media, and mobile apps, containing images, videos, and text. They are shown alongside content you’re viewing, like the display ad in a blog post shown below.

These ads are often part of pay-per-click (PPC) campaigns, where advertisers pay each time someone clicks on their ad. Display ads can be part of PPC campaigns on websites, social media, and mobile apps, in addition to search ads. Effective display ads drive clicks, conversions, and brand awareness by encouraging the audience to take action, such as visiting a landing page or making a purchase.

Types of Display Ads

Types of display ads can be categorized based on their format or targeting strategy.

Ad Targeting Modes:

  • Regional or Geographic Targeting: These ads target specific locations or regions.
  • Demographic Targeting: Ads are based on the interests or preferences of a specific demographic.
  • Contextual Targeting: These ads are specific to particular websites and must be highly relevant to the target audience.
  • Retargeting: These ads focus on re-engaging with previous website visitors.

When choosing your ad format, it’s important to consider the ad sizes and shapes that best suit each format. For instance, static ads can be small and narrow, while video ads should be rectangular or square to ensure comfortable viewing. Each format has its own requirements to effectively engage your audience.

Static Ads

Static ads use text, images, and links to direct users to a website’s landing page or product page. These ads are typically saved as JPEG or PNG files, making them quick to load and easy to create.

They are commonly found at the top of search results, like this Semrush ad on Google.

Banner ads, another type of static ad, are often horizontal and appear at the top or bottom of a website, near the logo.

Square static ads are effective on platforms like Facebook and Instagram, blending in with organic posts.

Like this one from The Oodie:

Vertical and skyscraper static ads are also popular, especially for use in between Stories or Reels on Instagram and Facebook, and between videos on TikTok.

Interactive Ads

Interactive ads are engaging advertisements that can be static or moving, featuring clickable or tapable elements such as forms or buttons. These ads are often created using HTML5 code to incorporate dynamic elements that encourage user interaction.

One type of interactive ad is interstitial ads, which are full-screen ads that appear during transitions, such as between game levels. Users must interact with these ads, such as by closing them, to return to the original page.

Another type is rich media ads, which change their appearance based on user interaction. For example, a rich media ad might change its text when the user drags arrows left or right.

Interactive ads like these can increase user engagement and help reinforce brand awareness by keeping users engaged for longer periods.

Animated Ads

Animated ads are short, looping videos without sound, designed to capture viewers’ attention through movement. These ads are typically created as GIFs or HTML5 files, allowing for multiple frames and more detailed storytelling.

Unlike static ads, animated ads are dynamic and visually engaging. They can effectively convey simple stories or showcase multiple products or features in a single ad. You might encounter animated ads on news sites, social media pages, and e-commerce stores.

For example, an animated ad on The Register’s homepage appears static at first but starts moving to catch viewers’ attention. While the animation is simple, it can be effective in grabbing the audience’s interest.

Video Ads

Video ads are a dynamic form of advertising that uses movement and sound to engage viewers with detailed narratives. These ads often feature real people or products and can be placed on web pages, social media feeds, or apps.

For example, a Bank of Singapore video ad on Forbes’ website targets users interested in wealth management products, appearing in the “Money” section.

While video ads can be more expensive to produce and distribute, research shows a high demand for them among internet users. According to a Wyzowl survey, 91% of online consumers want to see more videos from brands, and 89% have been convinced to buy a product after watching a video.

Considering this, investing in a video ad for a new or flagship product could be worthwhile. Start with a single ad placement and monitor engagement to determine if further investment is justified.

How Does Display Advertising Work?

Display advertising works by using algorithms and data to match ads with specific audiences across online platforms. When you visit a website or use an app, the platform’s algorithm analyzes your behavior and interests to determine which ad to show you. These ads are typically hosted on ad networks like the Google Display Network (GDN), which serve ads to relevant websites based on advertisers’ targeting criteria, such as geographic location, age, and gender.

Retargeting and remarketing ads are also used to target users who have previously visited a website but did not complete a specific action. This process of display advertising ensures that the ads you see are more relevant to you, while advertisers can optimize their campaigns for better results.

16 Display Ad Examples to Inspire You

To inspire your next online advertising campaign, let’s explore some of the latest and best display advertising examples from around the web.

These examples can provide valuable insights and ideas for creating effective ads that capture your audience’s attention and drive action.

Here are 16 display ad examples to inspire your next online advertising campaign:

Semrush

Semrush’s display ad effectively builds trust with its audience in two key ways.

First, it leverages social proof by connecting it with specific numbers, making the message more trustworthy and attention-grabbing. The question, “Want to grow revenue 1,800%?” immediately sparks interest.

The ad then reinforces this with “The Cycleverse did & you could too,” demonstrating that success is achievable.

Social proof plays into our natural desire for validation and reassurance from others. When we see others succeed, it acts as a testimonial, convincing us that we can achieve similar results.

Second, Semrush maintains a consistent brand image by using its brand colors throughout the ad. This consistency makes the ad instantly recognizable to those familiar with Semrush, reinforcing brand identity and trust.

LinkedIn

LinkedIn employs pain point marketing in this display ad to directly address the challenges and problems its audience faces, making the solution more relevant and urgent. By identifying and addressing these pain points, the ad builds a more emotional and immediate connection with viewers, creating empathy, which can lead to increased conversion rates.

The ad targets a common headache for employers—the cost and difficulty of hiring the right talent—and offers a solution that hits right where it hurts.

The text, “Find the people you want to interview, faster,” is simple yet powerful, addressing the time, effort, and cost associated with hiring.

Given that the cost of a bad hire can be substantial, LinkedIn’s solution to find interview-worthy candidates resonates with employers and recruiters, making a compelling case for using their platform for hiring needs.

PayPal

PayPal’s ad targets business owners with a compelling promise of increasing repeat buyers.

A strategy supported by research showing that existing customers are more likely to buy again and try new products. The ad boldly declares, “PayPal brings 30% more repeat buyers,” which immediately grabs the attention of those looking to grow their customer base.

Additionally, loyal customers often become brand advocates, providing free word-of-mouth advertising that can be more credible and impactful than any paid marketing campaign. This ad effectively leverages these principles to appeal to business owners seeking to increase customer loyalty and sales.

Adobe

Adobe’s banner ad for Photoshop effectively links product features, ease of use, and a subtle social message to appeal on multiple levels.

The tagline, “Everyone can blend in,” succinctly underscores the software’s user-friendliness and highlights the blending tool’s effectiveness.

The image of the woman seamlessly merging with the background showcases the tool’s capability and sparks imagination. The ad suggests that Photoshop is accessible to people of all skill levels and backgrounds, reinforcing a broader message of inclusivity and individuality.

This multi-layered approach makes the ad intriguing and memorable, resonating with a wide target audience while effectively promoting the product.

Mailchimp

The Mailchimp ad above resonates with forward-thinking business owners by highlighting cutting-edge technology like AI, supported by impressive revenue statistics.

AI has been a focal point for businesses, with 64% believing in its potential to enhance customer relationships, according to Forbes. Mailchimp capitalizes on this trend to make its platform immediately appealing to those interested in staying ahead.

The ad’s copy extends beyond the allure of AI, emphasizing a clear, quantifiable benefit. Business owners are drawn to numbers, and the promise of a potential 141% revenue increase is compelling.

Additionally, the ad provides a visual preview of Mailchimp’s Advanced Segment Builder, demonstrating the interface’s simplicity and usability.

Overall, Mailchimp’s ad paints a vivid picture of modernity, efficiency, and profitability, making it a compelling choice for potential users.

Spotify

Spotify’s ad strategically uses urgency and FOMO (fear of missing out) to push users toward its premium plan.

The ad’s headline, “Gone soon. 3 months of free premium,” does two things effectively:

  1. It offers a compelling deal—three months of free premium service.
  2. The phrase “Gone soon” creates a sense of urgency, motivating users to subscribe immediately to avoid missing out.

This tactic is particularly effective for prompting immediate action, such as quick sign-ups or limited-time sales.

By highlighting the temporary nature of the offer, Spotify encourages users who may be on the fence to take action now, transforming indecision into a decisive subscription.

Sephora

Sephora’s display ad emphasizes flexibility with delivery and pick-up choices.

By offering four different options—curbside pick-up, in-store pick-up, same-day delivery, and free shipping—Sephora gives customers control over how they receive their products.

This approach allows the beauty brand to cater to a wide range of preferences, appealing to a diverse customer base.

The tagline “Options that work for you” not only sounds catchy but also conveys a sense of empowerment to customers.

These tactics are in line with consumer trends. Studies indicate that customers are willing to pay extra for convenience, such as same-day or next-day delivery, as well as specific delivery time slots.

Sephora’s ad effectively turns the convenience of choice into a competitive advantage.

Google

Google’s ad for its Workspace suite delivers a direct and promising message of efficiency and business growth.

The ad’s clean design and impactful tagline effectively convey Google’s message. Featuring recognizable logos for Google Workspace tools like Google Drive, Gmail, and Google Meet, the ad requires no explanation for these widely used services.

The tagline “Go from booked appointment to fully booked” resonates with businesses, offering a compelling promise of transformation.

The “Get Started” call-to-action (CTA) reflects the ad’s simplicity and clarity, providing a straightforward path for users to take action.

Overall, Google’s ad embodies its ethos of simplicity and utility, showcasing how a straightforward approach can be highly effective.

Airbnb

Airbnb’s display ad taps into the trend of staycations and weekend trips, appealing to a broad demographic seeking quick holiday escapes. In Canada alone, domestic overnight trips more than doubled in 2022, reaching 13.6 million from the previous year.

The ad’s tagline, “Weekenders Welcome,” resonates with modern travelers, while the inviting imagery of a property encourages viewers to envision themselves in such a space, making a spontaneous short break seem achievable.

The call-to-action, “Find a quick getaway,” reinforces the tagline’s sentiment and provides a clear next step for interested prospects.

Asana

Asana’s ad highlights the tangible benefits of its project management tool right away.

Concrete statistics promise tangible results. The tagline is crystal clear: “42% faster execution, 34% more efficient, 100% Asana.”

Using impactful numbers grabs attention and establishes credibility from the start.

The call-to-action, “Sign-up today,” is direct and fits perfectly with the ad’s straightforward approach.

This style of display advertising combines persuasive messaging with numerical evidence. It appeals to decision-makers who recognize that improved efficiency and faster execution directly impact profitability.

TD Bank

TD’s ad presents an enticing financial incentive to overcome consumer inertia. It encourages prospects who may be hesitant to change their banking habits to reconsider.

The tagline “New Checking Account & $200” immediately grabs attention. Adding “All for you” emphasizes that the $200 comes without any catches or deductibles.

This strategy is particularly effective considering that U.S. adults often stick with their primary checking account for more than 17 years.

Offering a tangible, immediate benefit helps TD address a pain point for potential customers—the commitment to an old account, even if that loyalty is more out of habit than satisfaction.

The ad strongly encourages consumers to switch their checking account and claim $200 just for doing so.

Atlassian

Atlassian’s display ad establishes immediate authority and credibility for the software business by highlighting its recognition in the 2023 Gartner® Magic Quadrant™ for DevOps Platforms—a well-recognized metric of excellence in the DevOps space.

Using the strategy of third-party validation, the ad copy endorses the company’s expertise and industry leadership.

The CTA “Get report” nudges viewers to download the 2023 Gartner report, providing proof of Atlassian’s leadership claim and positioning the company as an authority while offering an actionable next step for potential customers to become more informed.

The New York Times

The New York Times ad takes a straightforward and transparent approach to entice new subscribers, highlighting a deeply discounted rate and a flexible subscription model as key selling points.

Zeroing in on cost and flexibility, the offer, “Now only $1 a week for your first year,” is tempting. The ad reinforces the value of this special rate by crossing out the original cost of $6.25.

Addressing a common pain point, the phrase “Cancel or pause anytime” offers an easy exit strategy, removing a significant barrier to entry.

The “SUBSCRIBE NOW” CTA button is direct, aligning perfectly with the ad’s straightforward nature and ensuring the offer is hard to overlook.

Webflow

Webflow’s ad blends intrigue, social proof, and a low-risk proposition to attract companies looking for better content management.

Starting with “The CMS you’ve been looking for,” the copy piques curiosity.

The fact that “leading companies” are making the switch helps build social proof subtly. Credibility motivates potential customers to find out more.

The CTA button “Try it free” is a major selling point. A free trial removes financial risk from the decision-making process and simplifies the process for organizations dissatisfied with their current CMS.

Canva

Canva’s ad highlights its extensive library of design elements, emphasizing the immense value it offers.

“100M+ elements, 1 affordable subscription” is a clear value proposition, suggesting limitless creative possibilities under a single budget-friendly subscription.

The colorful graphic not only grabs attention but also showcases vibrant designs users can create with Canva.

Overall, the ad effectively communicates Canva’s complex service in a simple, energetic way.

Samsung

Samsung’s rich ad for The Serif TV blends attractive visuals, social proof, and dynamic movement to showcase the product’s features.

The ad copy, “A world of color and contrast, In virtually any light,” makes an irresistible promise of an unparalleled viewing experience. This positions The Serif TV as a top choice for quality seekers.

The primary focus on the TV and its dynamic display ensures that the product stands out prominently.

Create Your Own Display Ad Campaigns

You can draw inspiration from these excellent display ad examples to enhance your digital advertising strategies.

Additionally, staying informed about market trends in your niche is crucial. Understanding what is effective (or ineffective) for other businesses can help you refine your marketing efforts for optimal results.

With sem.co you can gain comprehensive insights into your competitors’ performance. This includes their display, social, and video advertising campaigns, allowing you to benchmark your performance against theirs.

Take your advertising to the next level today by leveraging insights to drive actionable results.