Pretty much anybody with computer knowledge can learn how to make a very basic banner ad. To code the banner, simply combine the HTML tag for a link with the HTML tag for an image. You can create the necessary graphics using a simple computer art program, like Paint Shop Pro, which you can download from this site.
Basic, static banner ads are so simple you can make a few for your site in an afternoon, and animated GIF banner ads aren't much more complicated. On the other end of the spectrum are complicated rich media ads. Ads with elaborate animation or user interactivity require much more extensive programming ability.
Amateur banner ads often work fine, but with so many ads competing for viewer attention, many Web sites need the help of professional ad designers. Good advertising agencies and professional designers not only bring their programming skills to banner ad creation, but also their creativity and extensive marketing experience. They work to match a banner ad campaign with the advertiser's product or service, and to make innovative, attention-getting graphic content. There are many ad agencies and free-lance banner ad designers serving Web sites today, and they have a wide range of experience, ability and success. They also have a wide range of fees: You can get a professional banner ad for $50 or you can spend upwards of $1,000.
There are also Web sites that offer free banner ad creation. They either provide you with all the components you need to create your own banner ad, such as backgrounds and fonts, or they create a banner ad for you. These designers and companies do this for a number of reasons. Some simply make money from advertising on their sites, some offer free banner creation in exchange for their customers posting client banner ads on the customer's site and a few designers simply create banners as a hobby.
Some popular free banner design sites are:
Like most forms of advertising, banner ads vary considerably in quality because their creators vary a great deal in ability and experience. The range is even greater with banner ads than with most other forms, however, because it is so easy and inexpensive to create and post banners.