Infolinks was founded in 2007 in response to what is still a prevailing difficulty in the online advertising world. Most online viewers have trained themselves to glance over the advertisements of the webpages they visit. Because online ads are usually found in similar places on any given page, our eyes have become used to naturally averting themselves to these areas, in order to find the content we want, without being bombarded by ads that we don’t want to see. Infolinks aims to fix that problem in two ways. First, by helping web publishers place their advertisements in better spots, ads are less likely to be ignored by viewers. Second, and most impressively, Infolinks uses real-time analytics to understand what ads would be most beneficial to each individual viewer. Combining these two factors leaves a webpage with a more relevant ad, in a more relevant position. A win-win, for both the advertiser and the publisher.
The most valuable offering that Infolinks brings to the market is the software they employ to select ad content for viewers in real time based on current searches, not past ones. Almost all online advertising today is targeted to some degree or another. What that means is that in most cases, a web users browsing and search history is being stored in a web cash in the browser, and that information is being used to determine which kind of ads the user will see. This kind of technology is impressive, but it all has the same flaw. It is all a delayed response to past searches. Web users start seeing ads for things after they search for them. Infolinks follows this same process but does it in real-time. It is able to look at a search and actually narrow down why a user made the search, and then display the appropriate ads. It enables the advertiser to be a step ahead of where the other systems can get them, and that first step is critical in online retailing.
While there is nothing bad to be said about the software that Infolinks uses, there are some critical flaws in the business model that may make it less desirable in the eyes of both publishers and advertisers. Publishers are able to use the system for free after a short sign up process, but after that they no longer have any control over which ads are run on their site. This lack of control presents a large liability for many site owners who are becoming increasingly weary over the content of certain ads that are displayed on their web pages.
From an advertisers standpoint, the biggest downside to Infolinks is their pay per click pricing model. In general it is more beneficial to an advertiser to use a cost-per-action payment plan, or pays on specific ad interaction rather than just a click through.