Half of mobile users click ads by mistake

79 per cent of mobile users are annoyed by ads on their smartphones or tablets which self-initiate, according to a study from digital advertising company Vibrant Media.

Ads which the user can choose to interact with were more popular, with 66 per cent preferring this alternative, but 51 per cent of respondents said they interact with most mobile ads by mistake, while 48 per cent said they feel least in control of ads on mobile devices, above other media including the web, SMS and email.

“Consumers want to feel empowered by their digital content experience, not annoyed. Many mobile ad formats are interruptive or triggered in error,” said Tom Pepper, UK sales director at Vibrant Media. “To build meaningful relationships with consumers, brands need to deliver a positive user experience, which means using ad formats which respect the consumer and their device. The simplest way to do this is by using ad formats which are user initiated - enabling consumers to control the when and where of their ad experience.

“When consumers are out and about using their mobile phone or tablet they don’t want to be interrupted by irrelevant or disruptive forces beyond their control, and marketers who use such methods can actually harm users’ opinions of the brand being advertised. Marketers have to change their approach and recognise the need to deploy more relevant ads which sit nimbly and natively in the content displayed on handheld screens and only launch when the user chooses to engage with an ad. They need to move towards giving consumers the controls they so clearly desire.”