The Single vs. Double Underline Debate


In the previous post we provided you with some In Text ads optimization tips to whet your appetite. Since many of you showed interest in the subject and asked us to elaborate, we decided to devote a detailed post for every optimization tip.  So today we will start this series of posts by focusing on the Single versus Double Underline Debate.

During the Infolinks integration process, you can set the highlighted links on your pages to have single or double underlined hyperlinks. Using the double underlined format is considered a better way to optimize your In Text ads. The reason is because more and more online users recognize this format as unique to In Text advertising and will click on them only when they are interested in the highlighted term. They will hover over it with the mouse, consider the ad within the bubble, and click the ad and that’s exactly where the cash is!  An example of a successful Infolinks publisher using the double underlined hyperlinks can be found at:

The other option is to highlight your In Text ads with single underline. In the past, In Text ads with single underline could confuse visitors with other links on a given website or blog. When disguised as regular links, readers used to click on the ads without knowing that they lead to paid-for content. For the short term, it generated more clicks per page views and higher CTR, but in the long term the website’s readers understood that not all links are regular and avoided clicking entirely, or screened them carefully with a hover. This way, after the first increase in clicks, there will be a significant drop.

To avoid confusion, Infolinks developed a new and distinct format of single underline called “Single Dotted Underline”. The dotted underline should make a clear distinction between the regular hyperlink of the page and the In Text ads links. An example for the new dotted underline can be found at the Jimkarter’s Blog.

Choosing the right format for the In Text ads is all about making a clear distinction between the In Text ad links and other hyperlinks on the page. Until the dotted single underline becomes better recognized, we recommend sticking to the standard of the online community – noticeable double underlined hyperlinks. All the advantages of making both your visitors and the advertisers happy by getting permission for clicks are leveraged by using a common format that doesn’t annoy your visitors and doesn’t distract their focus away from your content.