An Introduction to Amazon Advertising

Amazon advertising in a mobile device

Topics: SEM

Amazon, the eCommerce juggernaut, opened its platform to digital marketers in the form of Amazon Ads. Much like other digital advertising solutions — Google Ads, Bing Ads, Yahoo Advertising — advertising on Amazon allows retailers to sponsor products on a pay-per-click (PPC) basis. With an estimated 103 million Amazon Prime members in the U.S. spending an average of $1,400 on the website annually, it’s no wonder why online vendors are shifting attention toward the brainchild of Jeff Bezos. 

The Power of Consumer Data

All data isn’t created equal. Shareen Pathak, Managing Director at Digiday, validated this statement when she said, “Google has search data, and Facebook knows interest levels, but Amazon has real power because it knows what people are buying and how they’re doing it.” There are over 224 million online shoppers in the U.S. Imagine being able to see what they buy, when they buy it, and how often they make a purchase. The specificity of Amazon’s data is a main attraction for digital advertisers. 

Amazon Ads vs. Google Ads

Google Ads is the leader in digital advertising, capturing 38.6 percent of total spend. With so many businesses competing on the established platform, the average PPC on the search network is $2.69 and $0.63 on the display network. Meanwhile, the average PPC on Amazon Ads rarely exceeds $0.35, according to Rob Sieracki of Practical Ecommerce. 

More than a cost-effective alternative to Google Ads, Amazon advertising has shown to help retailers rank higher on the site. Sales history plays a major role in Amazon’s algorithm, so those purchases generated via sponsored posts equate to a boost in your organic performance. 

Amazon ads isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution; rather, it offers various options to best utilize the platform. Below, we’ll discuss five forms of advertising on Amazon. 

Amazon Sponsored Ads

Sponsored ads are used to promote individual products on Amazon’s search results and product detail pages by bidding on either broad, phrase, or exact keywords. 

  • Broad keywords are built to drive traffic, allowing shoppers to find your listing as long as the keyword is found in the search query. 
  • Phrase keywords help eliminate irrelevant impressions by appearing only when the wording is in the correct order. For example, searching “acoustic Gibson guitar” would result in an impression if targeting the keyword “Gibson guitar,” whereas searching “acoustic guitar” would not. 
  • Exact keywords eliminate any room for error by displaying if your targeted keyword is searched without any words before or after it. 

Sponsored Brand Campaigns

Brand campaigns are different from sponsored ads, as they allow you to promote more than one product. These ads can be seen above, below, or on the side of search results and display based on branded, complementary, or automatic targeting keywords. 

  • Branded keywords utilize both your brand name and product. 
  • Complementary keywords are determined by products that can influence a consumer to purchase one if shopping for another; for example, a button-up shirt and tie. 
  • Automatic targeting relies on previous campaigns to find keywords that were successful. 

Display Ads

Display ads can be found on product detail, consumer reviews, offer listings, and search results pages. Additionally, display ads can be placed within abandoned cart, follow-up, and recommendation emails. This is done using either product or interest targeting. 

  • Product targeting creates cross-selling opportunities by reaching both specific and related items. 
  • Interest targeting can deliver your ad to a wider range of shoppers by focusing on their shopping history. 

Native Ads

Unlike the other Amazon advertising options, native ads don’t actually appear on the eCommerce website. Instead, native ads display on your own page in the form of recommendations, search, or custom ads. 

  • Recommendation ads are dynamically populated by Amazon and display items based on your page content and visitors. 
  • Search ads promote products that visitors are looking for either on Amazon or on your own website. 
  • Custom ads show what you want them to show.

Video Ads

Video ads can carry your message across the web by displaying not only on Amazon, but Amazon-owned websites (IMDB, Zappos, Audible, Goodreads) and devices (Kindle, Fire TV). Perhaps the biggest differentiator between video ads and the rest of the above options is that you’re not required to sell your product on Amazon in order to utilize this feature. Instead, it’s possible to link the video ad to any web page of your choosing. 

While newer when compared to its competitors, Amazon Ads is quickly gaining steam among online retailers. After all, the company was responsible for more than $232 billion in eCommerce sales in 2018 alone. That kind of consumer traffic makes advertising on Amazon an easy choice. If you’re ready to get started, our team of digital advertising experts can help. We keep up with current trends and best practices to produce maximum results for our clients. If you’d like to know more about how digital advertising can benefit your company, contact Axis41, A Merkle Company, today.