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Click Here: The Banner Ad Turns 25…

Cue the dial-up connection, fire up Netscape and get ready. We’re taking you back to 1994 when the most polarizing (and mocked) piece of digital advertising was created: the banner ad.

It’s October 27, 1994: tech website, then known as HotWired, launched with the first credited banner ad from AT&T, alongside ads from 14 other brands including Volvo, Club Med, MCI, 1-800-Collect and Zima

It was 468 pixels wide by 60 high, and certainly didn’t meet design standards of today.

But it revolutionized digital advertising forever. 

For starters, AT&T’s ad garnered a 44% click-through rate—absolutely unheard of today. Secondly, advertisers could now determine how many people saw an ad, and interacted with it. This new way of determining engagement in 1994 gave rise to so many opportunities for advertisers. From pop-ups to today’s targeted ads, to vertical on platforms like Instagram and 360 video, there are so many ways for advertisers to connect.


2007: The Webby Awards Starts Honoring Banner Ads

The Webby Awards honors the best of the Internet—and what’s better than a beloved banner ad? Although AT&T’s banner ad debuted in 1994, The Webbys introduced its first Banner/Display categories for Advertising in 2007. Who were the first winners?

Our Favorite Webby-Recognized Banner Ads:

The banner ad has truly come a long way; Once heralded as a new technological feat that would change advertising, to the butt of many Internet jokes. However, just as the Internet continues to shape and shift, so do the way advertisers utilize banner ads. Here are a few Webby-recognized projects that have found creative, unique, and engaging ways to use Banner ads and campaigns

Today the digital advertising has paved the way for new mediums like integrated digital campaigns, 360 video, Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality, and more. However, we’ll always hold a deep appreciation for the banner ad! 

Are you making great digital work including display ads? Enter it now in the 24th Annual Webby Awards by the Final Entry Deadline on Friday, December 20th, 2019! 

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