In a move that may get advertisers wondering about Facebook’s future plans for advertising on the home page, Facebook has started testing a new video ad unit that plays the video in a popup box when the video thumbnail on the right side of the page is clicked. It’s the first time we’ve seen this kind of ad unit on the Facebook home page, which Facebook has kept famously light on advertising since the site began.
Facebook, who earlier this morning reiterated to us that it expects to see revenue growth of 70% this year, is likely testing the new design to see if the increase in price it can charge advertisers is worth any negative feedback it may get from users. The experience was pretty surprising to us, but can be exited easily by clicking anywhere on the page.
Facebook home page video ads are common today; however, they currently play in-line when clicked. Here’s how the new video overlay looks when playing an ad from FreeCreditReport.com – as you can see, the rest of the page is grayed while the video plays:
Many industry analysts have long wondered if and/or when Facebook would start to experiment with more “prominent” advertising units on the home page. This may be the first of many tests we see Facebook conduct as it seeks to grab a larger share of online budgets from large advertisers who are interested in the different ways Facebook may be able to boost engagement with ads on the home page…