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Not all web users want to completely block ads

Blocking online adverts is a controversial subject - yes, adverts can be annoying but they also represent the only revenue stream for many sites.

A new survey from Adblock Plus in conjunction with HubSpot Research reveals that 83 per cent of users just want to block the most intrusive ads and 77 per cent would rather filter ads than block them completely.

The survey questioned 1,055 respondents from the US, UK, Germany and France, with 70 per cent of respondents being users of an ad blocker (not just Adblock Plus). Of the 30 per cent non-users, 63 per cent say that ad blocking has a positive impact on the web experience.

The use of ad blockers is justified by 51 per cent of respondents because they want to be in control of their own web experience. Indeed, 57 per cent say that search engine ads are actually valuable and useful.

"It's pretty clear from the survey results that we have two different ecosystems of online consumers - those who block ads and those who don't - and solving the dilemma of how to successfully monetise the hundreds of millions of ad blockers means reaching them on their own terms. Those terms are already codified in our Acceptable Ads guidelines, which were developed and vetted by ad-blocking users", says Till Faida, co-founder of Adblock Plus.

The three most annoying ad types are identified as online pop-ups, mobile phone ads, and ads before video content loads - such as on YouTube. Forty-eight per cent also strongly agree that online ads are more intrusive now than they were two to three years ago.

Some of the reasons why people click on ads are interesting too. Thirty-four per cent say they've clicked ads by mistake, 15 per cent say they've been tricked into clicking. Only seven per cent say they’ve clicked an ad because they found it compelling.

"The results of this research are very telling. People may be sick and tired of ads, but it’s only because they don't find them impactful or valuable enough to interact with", says Kipp Bodnar, HubSpot's chief marketing officer. "Marketers need to put their customers and potential customers at the center of the ad creation process.

"By focusing on providing valuable, relevant content through ads - just as they do blog posts, social content, offers and more - ads become an effective piece of the inbound marketing suite".

You can read more about the results in the full report available on the HubSpot website.

Photo credit: iQoncept / Shutterstock