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Website Promotion

1. Search Engine Submission 
2. Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Advertising
3. Reciprocal Linking
4. Banner Exchange Programs

5. Posting to Forums

6. Writing Articles for E-Zines
7. Ineffective and Unethical Promotion Methods


4. Banner Exchange Programs

Banner advertising is not as effective as it used to be as people have gotten used to ignore banners on web pages.  The click-through rate for banners has dropped from 1-2% during the height of their popularity to around 0.2% today.  This means that a banner has to be shown about 500 times to get one click. 

Banner exchange programs have become less popular as a result of the decline in banner effectiveness.  With an typical exchange ratio of 2:1 (# times you display other people's banners : # times your banner gets shown) and a click-through rate of 0.2%, your site would have to display a thousand banners from other sites to get one visitor.  This is not even considering the potential for cheating by site owners who use automated pages and programs to artificially inflate credits for their site.

That said, banner exchange can still be a worthwhile way to increase traffic if  you are can design and target your banners effectively.  When looking for a program to join, pay attention to the program's exchange ratio, targeting options, statistics reporting, and commitment to catching cheaters.   Ideally, you'd want to join a program that offers the highest exchange ratio, but even a 1:1 ratio is useless if people can get away accumulating credits by showing banners on a page that reloads automatically.  Look for companies that check (manually or otherwise) member sites regularly to ensure fair play.

Here are some major banner exchange programs in existence:

WebLaunch.us Banner eXchange - Our free banner exchange program offers a generous 4:3 ratio, one of the best in the world!  Plus, get 1000 free credits when you sign up.  Features category targeting, fraud monitoring, and a referral program that rewards you 1000 credits for every referral.

LinkBuddies Formerly, SmartClicks, LinkBuddies is one of the largest and oldest free banner exchanges on the web. Offers 2:1 ratio and tons of features. You can get lots of traffic information for your site (e.g. traffic and visitor profiling, visitor behavior, etc.) just by displaying a LinkBuddies banner like the one below. You can earn referral credits by referring other people to the program and even redeem unused credits for cash.

ExchangeAd - Allows you to rotate up to 10 banners. Offers 4:3 ratio and click-through rewards, referral credits and targeting by category and hours. Boasts a built-in cheater scan.

LinkExchange (bCentral)
- Although the network seems be in operation, there appears to be no way for new customers to sign up. Owned by Microsoft, this used to be the largest banner exchange in the world. It offers a 2:1 exchange ratio, banner creator, and targeting options. We cannot recommend LinkExchange at this time because the site is not working properly. For some reason our banners are not being displayed despite the large number of credits we have accumulated. Additionally, we get an error message every time we try to upload a new banner.

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