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Learn to Design Full Page Takeovers

Source: Rick Byrne

Here’s a hard truth: the average clickthrough rate (CTR) for banner ads is now a paltry 0.01% to 0.09% (depending on where you get your information). The harder truth? CTRs continue to fall each year, due to their declining novelty to a quickly-jaded web audience.

Lucky for you, there’s hope!

Coming up with novel solutions is what web designers do best. Isn't it after all, a designer’s job to be cutting-edge, innovative, and a bastion of good taste?

The latest ammo in your quiver full of web creative skills to fight consumer apathy? Why it’s the Full Page Takeover (aka Website Takeovers, Rich Media Takeovers, or Page Morph).

According to our friend at CBS Interactive, Rick Byrne, takeovers achieve an average click through rate of 2% to 3%. Which is right around the rate banners were getting back in the 90’s, when banners were shiny and new and no one knew what the heck an LOL cat was. (“I Can Haz Clickthroughs?”)

But takeovers, for all their clickthrough goodness, are a tricky business: a designer needs to create something really spectacular to save the ad from turning into an annoying intrusion for the web site visitor.

In his recent post over at his Design Career site, Rick (the guy who came up with the web standards for CBS Interactive and heads up their Fast Track team) takes you through the finer points of designing takeovers.

Hot tips in this article include:

  • Creating a sense of awe
  • Having a clear call-to-action
  • Elevating the brand in the user’s mind
  • Why you should avoid auto-initiated sound
  • Emphasizing what is unique to the web as an art form
  • Paying attention to a takeover’s CPU usage

He also runs through a case study for his really nice HP AirPrint takeover, so you can see his entire creative process from beginning to end.

A really well thought out web design tutorial. Give it a read then let us know what you think!

And, of course, if you have any tips to share about takeovers yourself.

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