UK advertisers are moving from traditional leaderboard banners to MPUs and other new formats, according to new research.
The findings, from Yahoo's ad exchange company, Right Media, show that MPUs (Mid Page Units) are now the most popular online ad format in the UK during the first half of 2008.
The figures disclose the trade in leaderboards as a percentage share of the total trades on the Exchange in the UK dropped from 34.1% in January to 24.8% in June, a continuation of a trend that was seen during 2007.
In the UK, MPUs now made up 34.1% of all ad formats being traded in January, with only a small drop to 32.6% by June.
Globally, leaderboards are still the most popular format, accounting for 32% of all ad formats traded globally, although they have seen a 3% drop since January.
Throughout the world, trading of MPUs remained constant over the last six months making up 22.3% of trades worldwide in January and 22.73% in June.
At the same time, there has been a growth in popularity of 180 x 150 rectangles, which by June represented 8% of all ad formats traded globally.
The growth of these particular formats perhaps reflects the greater use of Rich Media, as the dimensions of MPUs and rectangles are very suited to effective video and flash advertising.
In the UK over the first six months there was a strong increase in the trade of new ad formats. While in January the share of trade in key traditional ad formats - leaderboards, skyscrapers, wide skyscrapers, MPUs and banners - represented 97.4% of all formats traded in the UK, by June this had dropped to 87.3% - a fall of over 10.28%.
This was offset by the growth in trading of 160 x 25 which by June represented 9% of all UK treaded formats.
This decline is also reflected globally, where, over the same period, there was a 7.3% fall in the trade of these traditional ad formats, from 90.1% in January to 82.8% in June.
Denise Colella, VP - International at Right Media, said: "Obviously popularity reflects what is being brought onto the Exchange and the emergence of 160 x 25 in the UK is driven by the fact this format is now more widely available. However, there does seem to be a shift in format popularity and the trading of MPUs in the UK and the growth in 180 x 150 worldwide would seem to suggest the increasing popularity of formats that work well for Rich Media."
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