Ah, good old overconsumption. Your users’ brains have consumed so many Web pages that now they ignore most of the content and make assumptions.
Unfortunately that now means that they ignore advertisements. In response, we have to place ads front and center, make them blend in with the site, and justify it to ourselves and our visitors by saying that as the ads are highly relevant, they are obviously improving the usability of the site.
Pop-up windows are now either blocked by browsers or ignored by users more often than we’d like (although a North Carolina State University study suggests you can fool your users 63% of the time). The answer is to repurpose a different control type to serve our ad revenue ends. Let’s see – oh yes, the hyperlink would be a good one: ubiquitous, familiar, and users are already trained to hover and click on them. Let’s turn those into advertisements!