What is Contextual Targeting?

Contextual Advertising Business team hands at work with financial reports and a laptop, top view

As any business owner will know, advertising is essential. It is a great way to build up brand recognition. It is also a great way to draw new customers to your business. It is safe to say that if a company isn’t engaging in advertising, it will struggle to make any money.

Companies can’t just place these advertisements wherever they want, though. The ads need to be placed where their target audience can see them. This is where contextual targeting and advertising come into play.

What is Contextual Advertising?

With contextual advertising, adverts will be placed where they make the most sense i.e., where people that are interested in the product are more likely to see the advert.

With contextual advertising, the ad will match up to the content that it is being displayed in some way. For example, if a business is selling video games, then an advert may be placed on a YouTube video that talks about video games. A lot of YouTube videos nowadays use contextual advertising to some degree.

While contextual targeting will never be the only way in which a business advertises to customers, it will very quickly become one of the main methods that they use.

Benefits of Contextual Advertising

The big benefit here is the fact that the advert will be displayed to the people that actually care about the product. Take our video game example. If a business purchases an advert for a video game to be displayed alongside an article on video games, then they know that the person seeing that ad is more likely to buy that product. So, businesses end up with a higher conversion rate.

A lot of the time, this type of advertising tends to be a bit cheaper too. Businesses do not have to go to massive lengths to plan keywords, audience targeting, etc. They just have to find somewhere to advertise the product and be done with it. When ads roll out quicker and have a higher conversion rate, running the ad campaign is cheaper.

Contextual advertising is also fantastic for those companies that are looking to build up brand awareness. Even if somebody doesn’t purchase because of an ad, they will start to associate a brand with a particular type of product or service. This means that when they need to buy something, later on, the company that utilized contextual targeting is more likely to spring to mind.

Many companies that offer contextual targeting services are also able to control where the adverts end up. With other advertising types, particularly PPC, there is very little control over where the ads end up. This can often result in ads appearing in locations that are negative towards the product. That isn’t something that needs to be worried about with contextual targeting. The ads will always be displayed in the places that the advertiser chooses.

Finally, people tend to pay more attention to contextual ads. It is probably because they are relevant to the content and, therefore, less of an annoyance to a person. Once again, this is more likely going to increase the conversion rate from the ad.


Remember, while contextual advertising is a fantastic way to advertise products, it needs to be done properly to be effective. As a result, a lot of people will work with advertising specialists on their campaigns. This will ensure that the best conversion rate with the minimum amount of ad spend is achieved. Even the smallest of businesses can benefit from this type of marketing.

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