BIG LIST of Digital Ad Formats

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It is important to be familiar with all of the digital ad formats available on the ’Net, because it can help marketers choose the format to best meet their advertising goals.

For example, some formats, like the skyscraper, have been around for quite some time and offer a straightforward way for marketers to reach their customers, while other formats, like the filmstrip, are fairly new and are made up of much more interactive features that demand attention.

Luckily, the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB), which is made up of more than 500 media and technology companies that are responsible for selling 86 percent of online advertising in the U.S., offers valuable information regarding advertising guidelines and acceptable digital display units. Get familiar with these units, by checking out the big list of digital ad formats below:


Display Rising Stars

The six Rising Star ad formats were released in February of 2012, after a competition in which 36 new formats were entered by 24 companies. All of these formats are interactive and allow advertisers to include rich media content.

Billboard – 970 x 250

The Billboard ad can be seen on YouTube. It has high visibility, includes rich media interactivity and collapses to a “Show Ad” text with icon or “Show Ad” text/icon with branding.

Filmstrip – 300 x 600

The Filmstrip ad format offers a content-rich interactive experience to consumers through a canvas that combines five ads into a slender vertical unit. These five segments can be used by brands to advertise stages of the purchasing funnel or to tell a story in an innovative way.

Portrait – 300 x 1050

Portrait advertisements are divided into three interactive modules, which depending on the module, can be expanded after initiation by a consumer.

Pushdown – 970 x 90

The Pushdown format allows brands to showcase a variety of high-definition content and includes social share buttons so that ads have the opportunity to go viral.

Sidekick – 300 x 250, 300 x 600, 970 x 250

Sidekick ads start out as an in-page banner, but when expanded, push the page over to reveal additional content.

Slider – 970 x 90

Similar to the Sidekick format, Slider ads appear as a narrow bar at the bottom of a Web page, but when activated they move the page over to reveal additional interactive content.


Universal Ad Package

The universal ad units are among the oldest and most recognizable digital formats, and can be seen on the majority of sites throughout the ’Net.

Medium Rectangle – 300 x 250

Rectangle – 180 x 150

Wide Skyscraper – 160 x 600

Leaderboard – 728 x 90

(image shown is smaller than the actual ad unit)


Other Ad Units

These ad units are not as common as the universal ad formats, but provide marketers with additional size options for showcasing their ads.

Super Leaderboard – 970 x 90 

(image shown is smaller than the actual ad unit)

Half Page – 300 x 600

Button 2 – 120 x 60

Micro Bar – 88 x 31


Pop-Up Ads

Pop-ups are defined by the IAB as “Any advertising experience where visiting a website in an initial browser window initiates a secondary browser window to deliver an ad impression directly above the initial browser window.”

Pop-Up – 300 x 250

Pop-Up Large – 550 x 480

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