Online ads can get really annoying most of the time. They show up whenever you open up a website and they also get in the way of your browsing. They even turn up on your favorite social media platforms. They are literally everywhere on the internet!
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Blocking ads – is there such a thing?
Back to the ads, there is a way for you to stop them from showing up whenever you are browsing the web. There is a simple tool that is designed to block ads. It’s called adblocker and it is available on all popular browsers such as Chrome, Internet Explorer, Firefox, etc. This tool hides those ads for you so you don’t have to view them while going through your favorite websites. An ad blocker works on banner ads, some YouTube video ads, popup ads, etc. Also includes blocking marketers from viewing your tracking code; like how long did the viewers spend on viewing the website or particular pages. An ad blocker is very easy to use; all you have to do is download it and it will do the rest for you in the background. When you open up a website with those intrusive ads, the ads simply won’t show up because the ad blocker will be doing its job.
How does it work?
The ad-block tool has a built-in filter list that contains information about what to block and what to allow to appear on the websites you visit. When a website is loading, the ad-block extension goes through that website’s scripts and compares them against the filter list given. If there are any ads or scripts that it finds that it was built to block, the adblocker stops them from downloading ads and appearing on your page.
Pros and cons of ad blocker
The pros of the ad blockers are on the viewers’ side; their tracking code is hidden which protects their privacy, ads are blocked so there won’t be any interruptions during their website viewing, improving their battery life and increasing page load times and other third-party scripts are blocked as well.
But there is another side to the story: the cons. Unknowingly, viewers are putting their websites out of the business by blocking ads. Because these ads are generated by marketers for their businesses. By observing their tracking codes, marketers could get an idea about what the visitors on their websites do; what kind of pages they check out, how long do they spend on each webpage, what sort of stuff do they click on, etc. All this information gives marketers information about the viewers’ behavior and by analyzing it, marketers can improve the users’ experience on their websites. For other ads, it is a matter of financial support: online advertising is where free content is supported financially. The advertisers get their dollars from clicks by the viewers. So even though ad-blocking helps viewers in a way that they get uninterrupted website viewing, it has also proven to affect other businesses who rely on viewers’ clicks.
Stats – How users feel about ad blockers
Adblocker tools have helped users have a smooth browsing experience; users feel that ads slow down their browsers. Ads have image-rich banners with media and animation, which is bound to slow the loading on some websites. That results in a poor user experience, hence the reason for them using the ad blocker in the first place.
However, AdBlock Plus has revealed from their survey that page loading time is not the only reason for them using an ad-block. There are many different reasons such as 49% of US ad-blocker users have said that ads popping up on their websites are annoying or irrelevant. Some users say that there are too many ads on the internet (40%) while others find it very intrusive (40%). Users have also pointed out that ads take up too much of the screen space and get in the way (37%). 33% of users feel that ads slow down their device and they want a faster user experience. Some even feel that ads are imposing on their online privacy (29%). Those are just a few examples of how users feel about ads turning up while they browse on the internet.
In the US, users have mostly installed ad blockers in their desktop computers (37%) whereas users of mobile phones (15%) and tablets (10%) are slightly less in percentage. If you compare the gender, ad blockers in the US are mostly used by men (49%). Women using ad blockers in the US are only at 33 percent. Moreover, if you observe worldwide countries ranked by percentage of ad blockers, you will find that Indonesia is where the highest percentage of users have ad blockers installed in their devices (56.8%) and Morrocco is where the least percentage of users have ad blockers (17.2%).
Hence, according to the stats given above, ad blockers are not used by a large number of people, though it is still used and it has proven to be disadvantageous for advertisers. Users also have another challenge to go through: there are a large number of websites that do not let users into their websites unless they deactivate their ad blockers. More data is still needed for that, but the fact remains that as long as users are aware of an ad-blocking tool that can provide them with a smooth and uninterrupted web-browsing experience, they would totally go for it.