The Baidu Super-Wide Ad

28 Oct 2005

Since Google launched the Google Ads program, website design has been seriously affected. The question of “where will I put the Google Ads in my layout?” has become an important one. I’ll admit that I, too, made this a significant factor in my own redesign of this blog.

There has been a buzz for a while about Baidu starting an ad program similar to Google’s. What I’ve noticed in the past few weeks is not directly related, though… it’s the 990 pixel wide by 60 pixel high Flash ads that appear on Baidu News. There are currently no ads on the Google News front page. (The Baidu News ad is positioned at the bottom of the screenshot below.)

baidu-ad

As I see it, these ads represent a clear departure from Google’s strategy. The ads are so large that they span the entire width of the screen, but they resize smoothly (using the fluid flash technique?) to fit 800 by 600 monitor resolution. Google’s ads are simply small (and sized absolutely), so they work at any resolution. Furthermore, Baidu’s ads are Flash, the antithesis of Google’s largely text-based ads.

It’s interesting to see Baidu leaving Google’s well-worn path occasionally and charting some new territory.

P.S. The ad is for 蒙牛 milk, which is the same company that sponsored the “Supergirl” show.

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John Pasden

John is a Shanghai-based linguist and entrepreneur, founder of AllSet Learning.

Comments

  1. It may be breaking away from Google, which I’d say is neither good nor bad, but it definitely is moving closer to the Flash- and Javascript-laden front pages of all of the other Chinese portals out there – Baidu’s supposed to be all about simplicity, right? It was nicer when they didn’t have the Flash on there, but I guess I should be content that there are no floating graphics.

  2. Certainly fits more with the ludicrously busy average Chinese site. Still a lot better than most popular sites out there, and really not a lot worse than some image advertisements that are plastered on US sites (and having the Flash scale makes them a lot easier to design with).

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