How to Use Native Ads for Your Business

Digital advertising is an important way to reach your target audience. If you want your ads to seamlessly blend into the content, native ads are the answer. Native advertising can help bring your brand front and center. Whether you realize it or not, you encounter native ads all the time. In this article, we will discuss the definition of native advertising, the six different kinds of native advertising, and how you can use native ads for your business.

native advertising

Native Advertising Definition

Native advertising is the use of paid ads that match the look, feel, and function of the website on which they appear. It is also sometimes referred to as sponsored content. As consumers become more intelligent regarding digital marketing tactics, native ads blend into the editorial content on the site or app and make it less obvious that they are being targeted with ads.

Native ads are becoming more popular all the time. According to eMarketer, US native ad spend is expected to increase by 21% in 2021 to a value of $57 billion.

Benefits of Native Advertising

There are many benefits to sponsored content advertising.

Fast Results

Native ads can result in nearly-immediate sales. It is a much faster advertising and marketing strategy than SEO or content marketing. If you want real time results, try native advertising.

Reach Your Target Audience

With native advertising, you are virtually guaranteed to reach your target audience.

Increase Brand Awareness

While someone is shopping for pricier, more well-known brand, they might become acquainted with your brand when they see branded content or a banner ad for your product on the web page.

Difficult to Ignore 

Most people actually look at and engage with native ads, more so than traditional ads, since they blend onto the web page on which they appear.

what is native advertising

Six Types of Native Advertising 

Just like other kinds of advertising, there are several different kinds of native advertising.  According to the Interactive Advertising Bureau’s native advertising playbook, there are six categories of native ads.

In-Feed Units

In-feed native advertising units are sponsored posts that show up in your social media feeds or on a publisher’s website. They are paid ads that show up directly in-line with other articles, posts, or content. They vary from site to site because they fit into each website’s own user experience.

Paid Search Units

Native advertising is also a popular advertising method for search engines. These kinds of native ads are popular because they look so similar to organic search results. That’s right: the top-of-the-page results at the top of Google are actually paid ads.

Recommendation Widgets

You will also see native ads on publisher websites, social media, and on search engine results pages in recommendation widgets. These ads are typically off to the side on a web page, or at the end of the article under a heading recommending additional content you might like.

Promoted Listings

If you like to shop online, you most likely see promoted listings on a regular basis. For example, if you search for a book on Amazon, many listings will appear. However, most likely, some of the listings will actually be paid media placements that look just like organic results.

Display Ad with Native Elements

This kind of native advertising looks much like any other ads you see while browsing the web. It might even appear in an ad container or banner. Then, you might ask, what makes it native? Well, it is contextually relevant to the website it appears on and the content it appears next to.

Custom Native Ads

Because of the rapid pace of advancement when it comes to digital advertising, the IAB’s final kind of native advertising is simply custom native ads. This can include a variety of possibilities For example, creating a Snapchat filter is a custom native ad. It is both paid media and it fits within the app’s user interface alongside the other regular filters.

definition of native advertising

Why Native Advertising is Important 

When you stop to think about it, content is a constant part of our day. We spend our days looking at a variety of screens for both work and pleasure. Americans spend 17 hours and nine minutes looking at digital devices each day, according to one study.

With so much time spent looking at the internet, consumers have learned how to ignore many ads. Or, even block them from their phones and computers altogether.

Native advertising is meant to integrate with the content we all look at on a daily basis. It’s much harder to ignore than a typical ad. In fact, consumers look at native ads 53% more than display ads. Native ads might even increase your conversions.

Native Advertising and Programmatic Buying

Programmatic advertising is also on the rise. This can most likely be explained by the speed, accuracy, and intelligence of programmatic ad-buying software. Simply type in your campaign goals and key performance indicators, and the programmatic algorithm will evolve based on audience behavior. The marketplace can change in a second. Programmatic ad buying ensures that your campaigns are ready to adapt.

When you combine programmatic buying and native advertising, your ads have a greater chance of reaching certain audiences. The programmatic algorithm will help optimize your native ad campaign, by doing more of what works and stopping what doesn’t.

The Future of Native Advertising

Just like any digital advertising trend, native advertising is sure to evolve. But you can stay ahead of the curve with a digital advertising agency like SEO Design Chicago.

Social Media 

When you think of native ads, most likely search engines, publisher sites, and shopping sites first come to mind. However, native ad spend is quickly moving to social media sites. More and more brands are spending their native advertising budgets on Instagram, LinkedIn, Snapchat filters, Instagram sponsored content, and other social platforms.


These days, the majority of web traffic comes from mobile devices. Native mobile ads will continue to grow over time.

Native Video Ads

As video ads become increasingly popular, so will native video ads, particularly on social media sites.

User-Generated Content 

Consumers love authenticity. User-generated content helps build brand loyalty and creates a deeper connection between the brand and the audience. Be on the lookout for additional user-generated content in native ads.

Ethics Disclosure 

Yes, native ads do blend in with regular content. However, no one likes to deceive or be deceived. More and more platforms will create ad disclosures – even on native ads. This provides additional transparency for the user.

Shot of a business woman using digital tablet in the store.

Tips for Creating Effective Native Ads

Here are some tips for how to create the best native ads.

Set Your Goals 

The first step of any successful advertising campaign is to set a goal, or several goals, at the beginning. Then choose which KPIs you will use to measure your success.

Create the Right Message 

Next, think about what message you want your ads and content to convey. Be sure you know your target audience and what it is they want and need.

Choose the Right Platform and Format 

The next step is to consider which platform and website your target audience uses. This is how you will choose where to run your target ads. Then, you can choose which kinds of ads you would like to run. There are various ad formats available for native advertising campaigns.

Generate Your Content and Ads 

Next, it’s time to write and design your ads. Keep in mind that you will want to use a visual, keep it short and sweet, write in the second person, and include a well-written call to action.

Post Your Content Organically 

Before running an ad campaign, consider posting your content organically on social media. See how it performs. You can promote the posts organically to see what your audience responds to before making a final decision on your campaign’s content.

Promote Top Performers 

Once you know which posts perform the best, sponsor the posts or create a new native ad campaign across various platforms with the most successful content.

Measure Your Results 

Finally, go back to the first step and measure your KPIs. Check and see how your ads are performing and how you are measuring up to the goals you set for your campaign.

Test, Optimize, Repeat 

Advertising is never one and one. Rather, it is a rinse-and-repeat process. You can test, make adjustments, and run new ads all the time. The beauty of digital advertising vs. traditional advertising is the ability to make quick changes. It’s much easier than changing a whole billboard!


Finally, take advantage of retargeting. Once your target audience visits your website or clicks on an ad, you can retarget them with an even more specific ad based on that interaction to encourage them to visit you again and complete the desired action.

how to use native ads

Native Advertising with SEO Design Chicago

When it comes down to it, native advertising beats out traditional advertising. Contact SEO Design Chicago toady to create your own native ads campaign. Native advertising is a complicated process that is best left to the experts. Our digital advertising team is ready to help you create a campaign. Native ads can work for nearly any kind of business, brand, or company.


  • What is native advertising?
  • What are the different types of native advertising?
  • How do I create native ads?
  • Will native ads work for my business?
  • What are the benefits of native advertising?

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