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Articles - Free and Paid Classified Ads

Tips For Effective Online Advertising

Author: Archie R. Lawhorne

Banner Advertising
The word "banner" in Internet terms is nothing more than a graphic image that announces the name and identity of a Web site, along with a brief description. Banner ads can be an effective way to expose your business to millions of prospects. There are two different kinds of banner ads: FREE ads and PAID ads. Banner advertising is one of the most prevalent advertising methods currently used. Depending on where the ad is placed, some paid banner ads can be quite expensive. Generally you pay for the banner ad based on the likely exposure it will get. Therefore, high traffic Web sites garner higher banner ad rates. An increasingly popular arrangement is to "pay-per-click". With this type of arrangement, you only pay for the people that actually click on your banner to visit your site. This is a often a much better deal than paying for people who are only "exposed" to your banner. Some programs have a fixed cost. Others let you determine what you pay for each click. Like anything else, the key to effective banner advertising is to put your banner on web sites that target your market, and design a banner that compels people to click on it. There are many sites that offer free banner generation. Go to your favorite search engine and search for "Free banner ad design." There are tons of other resources available to assist with banner design. Go to  and contact any of the designers listed. Some of them will just design a banner and charge you for the work. Others will agree to design the banner for you in exchange for you placing one of their banners on your site for a specified period of time. Many free banner ads are also available in the form of a "banner exchange." The banner exchange operates under a simple agreement such as, "I advertise my business on your site for two months with my banner, and you do the same on my site for two months." Ideally, you want to make sure you are exchanging banners on high traffic sites. If one site has a significantly higher amount of traffic, the exchange rate agreement might be altered to reflect this fact, such as a longer placement duration, etc. This is generally a good deal for both parties since it generates additional exposure to your business at virtually no cost. Just make sure you are careful not to exchange banners with a competitor selling similar products or services, as this might serve to drive traffic AWAY from your Web site -- certainly not the action you desire.

Classified Ads
One of the most cost-effective tools available is the classified ad. Today there are literally thousands of places on the Net to post free classifieds. And there are numerous ways to find them. Simply go to Yahoo, HotBot, AltaVista, or any of the other search engines and type "free classifieds." Hundreds of different sites will appear. Set an objective of how many listings a day you're going to post. It can be time-consuming, mindless work, so plan this in your "idle" time. Most free ads at classified sites expire after a certain amount of time, so keep track of which ones are most effective and keep returning to renew your ads. Here are some of the most responsive classified sites I've found.

1. Yahoo Classifieds - 
2. Business Solutions Classifieds - 
3. Best Mall Classified Ads - 
4. 1AmericaMall - 
5. Five Star Classified Ads - 
6. Classifieds 2000 - 

FFA Links
While searching and placing free classifieds, you'll likely come across sites that provide free links, typically referred to as FFA sites, or "Free For All" links. These are specialized Web sites that allow advertisers to post short ads in various categories. The difference with FFA links is that you typically are only allowed a few words to describe your site, but with a simple click, prospects are immediately connected to your web page. It's important to choose your words carefully and include a major "BENEFIT" in your offer, rather than just a descriptive feature. Examples include, "Lose 20 pounds in 20 days!" or "Cut Your Legal Expenses In Half." Lead with the benefit, follow up with features. In most cases, once an ad is placed on a FFA site, the site owner then replies with an e-mail, acknowledging receipt of the ad, accompanied with an ad of their own. Because of the massive amount of link placements, FFA sites continuously drop old ads and replace them with new ones. So it's a good idea to revisit these sites regularly to re-post your ads. To find suitable FFA links, go to your favorite search engine and type in "FFA links." You will be provided with hundreds of different sites from which to choose. Here's a listing of some of the more popular sites:

1st Link Booster 
FFA Net 
TrafficWave FFA 

If you are going to spend the time, effort and expense required to post online ads, it is critical that the words you choose pull the maximum number of responses possible. Keep in mind that to write ads that pull, means learning another profession, or at least learning the bare basics so that your advertising is not in vain. Rather than attempting to lay out an entire writing course within this article, I've provided a couple of links below that you can review at your leisure. These sites offer extensive resources that will allow you to uncover the techniques and formulas used by the most successful copywriters.

About the author:
Archie R. Lawhorne, APR, is an accredited public relations professional, marketing writer and consultant. Archie's FREE 7-Day MLM Crash Course reveals the proven system that MLM heavy-hitters use to enroll hundreds of people. For instant delivery, send a blank email to:


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