Content and design or better said, good content in pleasant design is often ruined by ads. And this is a general feeling, it is not just for some blogs, but for all.
This is a very important issue, because having a good income from the ads and also having a nice interface for you website, will make both sides happy – user and owner. A good approach would be designing with placeholders for future ads, and in this case the content along with the ads will be homogeneous. I’m pretty sure that this idea is quite familiar in the analysis phase, but it gets stuck in the design process.
Every time a quality blog or a website has decent traffic, the owner wants to recover the initial investment or even make profit. This is not a bad thing, if this would be on a longer term. But very often, the investor side is not welded with the user experience / user interface side. In this situation, traffic goes down, revenues up for a little period of time and the site goes down. This is the “happy” situation, while the sad one is when everything goes down.
I want to share with you some guidelines that should be implemented in different types of sites. And I think in this case I will give you some examples, because it is good to see how you can end the content presentation.
The first example is the well known – about.com. On every subsection of this site, you will find 5 big ads sections displayed chaotic. Keep in mind, that if you want you content to be read, the content should be a simple block. That is because the website reading action is similar with paper reading action, and both should follow the same rules.
The second example is a nice site, TopTenReviews. It is a good site with great content. But, again the desire for revenue is big. The same situation as About.com is here. Several ads blocks are scattered along the layout. The good part is that the content block is almost OK. The bad thing here is that the focus will be lost between the content and ads.
And this last idea, is another topic that should be well analyzed. When you place ads on your site, be sure to balance the overall look. You must not draw attention too much to the ads. Because in this way the interest for the content will be lost. So, keep in mind how you place the ads and also, make sure that the ads are not too aggressive for the eyes.
Balance is the keyword in every site. Cheers!