Service Debuts That Searches Within Ads

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A new type of online advertising that features search within the ads was launched at this week's OMMA East conference in New York.


Inoventiv Corp., Toronto, introduced Search&Display patent-pending technology, which enables Web users to search an advertiser's database and return relevant results within an online ad unit.


Consumers typically have to click on an ad, which takes them to a page on the site that the advertiser wants them to see or the front page. Search&Display allows them to search for the item or information they are looking for within the ad and takes them directly to that content within the ad.


"Our technology goes out and brings back whatever you ask for, directly into the ad. You don't have to go look for it," said Inoventiv CEO John Marshall.


Taking that a step further, users can click on the word, "Buy," in the ad and be taken to product's purchase page, bypassing several pages and steps.


Inoventiv will be working with entertainment and other types of companies to roll out the technology in the next month. LavaLife, a singles Web site, is using Search&Display to allow singles to search for other singles in their ZIP code and age range from within the ad.


Advertisers who have tested Search&Display report click-through rates of 11 percent to 14 percent, Marshall said.


"There is a great demand for search, branding, relevance and higher conversion rates. Search&Display combines these requirements to convert Web users into qualified online buyers, before the click-through," he said.


Though his background is in art and marketing, including working as a creative director for ad agencies, Marshall thought of the advertising technology two years ago. He was frustrated with the way search marketing works, including requiring users to click on links to get to an advertiser's Web site, then often having to search again to find the item or information they are looking for, or go to different pages to buy the product.


"The Internet and rich media is so interactive," he said. "Why do I have to go to another site to find something?"


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