If you’ve ever run ads on Amazon, then you’re probably familiar with one of the most popular ad types on the platform: Sponsored Products. These cost-per-click ads feature a single product and, when clicked, take the searcher directly to the Product Detail Page for that product.
While many advertisers are using Sponsored Product ads to promote their products, not all understand the different placement options for these advertisements, or, more importantly, how to better control which placement they get.
In today’s post, we’ll teach you about the three placements available for Sponsored Product ads as well as their pros, cons, and uses. We’ll walk you through how to know where your ads are showing and how they are performing based on their location. We’ll teach you how to better control where your ads are shown and why you should care about ad placement anyway! Finally, we’ll use a case study to demonstrate how leveraging ad placements can be a game changer for your ad strategy.
The most sought-after spot to land a Sponsored Product ad is on the first page of search results, at the top of the page. This is one of the first places customers searching for products will see, so if you want your product seen this is the place to be! Because Sponsored Products operate under a CPC model, the highest bid for a keyword will determine which product gets this premium placement.
The search volume for a given keyword helps determine how many slots there are for ads at the Top of Search. If there is low search volume and traffic, fewer ads will be shown. Conversely, if there is high search volume and traffic, more ads will be shown.
If you’re not sure how to tell which products shown are ads and which are organic, you’re not alone! This is one of the benefits of Sponsored Product ads—they blend in with organic results quite well. However, the distinction under the photo of the product that says “Sponsored” can help you tell which products are ads and which are not.
Most brands and products typically see their best Sponsored Product return come from this placement, but it is also the most difficult placement to land, due to the competitiveness of the space. The cost-per-clicks tend to be the highest in this location. You might see only 5% of your ads served here.
So, where do the rest of your ads show, then?
Apart from the top of the first page, there are other places within search results where ads can be served. They can also be placed alongside and within the organic results further down the page and on subsequent pages of results. Lower bids that did not win premium placements can land ads in these spots. Any ad that is within or alongside organic results but not at the top of the first page is considered rest of search.
The main benefit to rest of search ads is that these placements are cheaper. The main drawback is that fewer customers will see them and click on them.
The last place a Sponsored Product ad might show up is on Product Detail Pages. These ads show up underneath the product listing and typically showcase products similar to the one featured on the detail page.
This can be particularly useful if you are trying to land ads on a competitor’s product pages. This way, as customers are browsing those products, they can encounter an advertisement for your product.
Product detail page placements typically cost less than Top of Search placements, but can definitely still provide value to you based on your strategy.
To know where your ads are showing and how they are performing based on those placements, simply run a Sponsored Products Placement Report in the reports section of the advertising portal. Once you’ve run the report, you will be able to see how many of your ads were delivered for each placement, how many were clicked, the average CPC, total orders, total spend, and total sales.
In the example below, you can see that only 3% of the ads were shown at the Top of Search, but 71% of the sales came from this placement, as well as a return 3x higher than in any other placement.
With this information, what could be done to better control where the ads are served?
Perhaps you’re trying to get a higher percentage of your ads to serve at the Top of Search. Maybe you’ve found that the return is greatest for you on Product Detail Pages because of the lower CPCs. Regardless of the reason or strategy, you can influence where your ads serve to some extent through the use of Placement Multipliers.
Placement Multipliers essentially tell Amazon that you are willing to bid higher—a certain percentage higher—for a specific placement. So, for example, if you are bidding $1 for the term “hair brush,” if you add a placement multiplier of 200% for the Top of Search, you are saying that for that placement, you are willing to increase your bid by 200%—from $1 to $3.
You can use Placement Multipliers for both Top of Search and Product Detail Pages.
We recently used this strategy to help one of our partners get more of their ads on the Top of Search.
We work with a major supplements brand that was struggling with obtaining a strong non-branded Return on Ad Spend (RoAS). Looking into the placement report, we were able to determine that the magnitude of difference in RoAS between Top of Search and the other placements was extremely high.
We decided to test what would happen by drastically decreasing bids across the board, but using a Placement Multiplier to increase the bids only in cases where they would serve at the Top of Search.
In three months, we saw that although impressions decreased on the whole, almost all ads that were served landed in the Top of Search premium placement. Spend also dropped because we stopped paying for placements that weren’t performing well. We were left with an incredible increase in efficiency in our campaigns, seeing the RoAS increase 23x and the click-through-rate increasing 78x!
Clearly, knowing about Sponsored Product Placements plays long-term dividends. Don’t waste any time or money—download a Placement Report today and start taking advantage of Placement Multipliers! Want to learn more about how Pattern’s advertising team works our magic? Reach out to get a demo today here and download our Experts’ Guide to Amazon Advertising Strategy below!
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Peak season is almost upon us and with all signs pointing to it starting earlier than ever, with Christmas gifting searches now ramping up in August and September, it’s time to start preparing for peak. In this article, we’re sharing our top five tips for planning and preparing for peak season with Google Ads and the strategies required to get your Paid Search ready so you can drive success over this crucial period.
In 2021, gifting search terms started increasing in popularity in August. The general trend is that people are looking, researching and weighing their options early, so it’s best to start your Paid activity early to ensure that you’re capturing that early research traffic. This will help drive revenue alongside aiding those consumers who are in their research phase.
From 2020 to 2021, spend during Cyber Week actually only rose 2% but in the weeks leading up to it, it increased by 16%. However, Cyber Week is still the biggest period during the latter half of the year, accounting for 23% of all online spend by consumers over peak. Being prepared and starting early will help you to maximise your time during this period.
According to Google, 48% of global consumers have stopped buying or using a service due to privacy concerns. Privacy is front of mind when consumers are shopping online and we know that Google is phasing out 3rd party cookies in 2023. This is going to make it much harder to track users online and it’s something that brands need to think about this now – waiting isn’t an option.
From a Google Ads point of view, you want to ensure you have set up the Google Ads tag across your site and have enabled ‘Enhanced Conversions’, which ensures all conversions are tracked and allows you to monitor other actions such as ‘Add to Cart.’ This is relatively easy to set up, especially if you use ‘Google Tag Manager’.
It’s also vitally important that you build up your first-party data during this time as this is data you own and it can be used when targeting consumers that have provided your brand with their email address. Pattern’s own experience shows that by segmenting and using first-party data, you can see a 10% improvement in revenue and ROI.
A full-funnel approach is now more important than ever as consumers become more discerning and have more choices than ever of where to shop.
Pattern has seen success with Google Ads’ ‘Discovery Campaigns’ (image-based ads that appear on Google platforms such as Gmail and the Google app), which have driven success both from a traffic and revenue perspective.
The performance of these campaigns is significantly enhanced by adopting a segmented and nuanced approach to first-party data and incorporating these into your campaigns. Other options for a full-funnel approach include YouTube and testing bidding on keywords that are more representative of the research phase. (e.g. ‘best baby clothes’ for a baby clothes brand)
Earlier this year, Google announced that they were moving away from Smart Shopping and launched Performance Max. This is a new campaign type that incorporates features and placements from Smart Shopping but expands them onto other platforms such as Gmail but also alternative creative options, such as images and videos.
Since Google has already started automatically upgrading Smart Shopping campaigns to Performance Max, expect to see some fluctuations in the first 2 weeks following the switch over but results generally seem positive. We recommend upgrading sooner rather than later to limit any potential impact to peak period.
Peak period will be even more competitive than in 2021 and you’ll need your budgets to support this period, we recommend boosting budgets in October to start capturing that early peak traffic. As we enter November and the Cyber Period, start early and make sure you are capturing those consumers looking for early bargains, ensuring you are being nimble in your optimisations and reacting to the data that you are seeing.
Overall, peak period is vital to help drive your sales and by preparing early, you will see strong results and drive success for your brand. If you want to discuss how your brand can navigate this next peak period, contact us to discuss your options with our performance team now.
Entering the ecommerce landscape is a huge undertaking for any brand—it usually requires a large investment in resources and expertise to really be successful. Any brand can quickly get in over their heads trying to navigate the nuances of SEO, fulfillment and logistics, distribution control, listing optimization, and meeting the numerous other requirements and administrative tasks to show up well on marketplaces.
Unfortunately, because it’s so easy for third party, gray market, and unauthorized sellers to obtain and sell products online, many brands find themselves pressured to execute an ecommerce plan without the right resources to succeed on marketplaces and their other channels.
So, for brands looking to enter the ecommerce space or improve their current and future performance, it makes sense to partner with an ecommerce consultant.
Pattern’s global presence and proven success with hundreds of brands has allowed us to develop highly effective ecommerce consulting services. We can guide your brand to navigate issues both large and small in marketplaces worldwide. To maximize your ecommerce efforts, you’ll need to understand what an ecommerce consultant does and how to select one who drives the right value for your brand and products.
An ecommerce consultant is a specialist in the ecommerce space who can give you personalized guidance on how to market your products and grow their presence on digital marketplaces.
An ecommerce consultant should be able to analyze your brand, audience, category, opportunity, and current roadblocks and help you understand how to utilize your resources (or what resources are missing) to be most effective in capturing your opportunities in the ecommerce space.
Not sure how to evaluate a consultant? Here are 4 key attributes to look for as you make your choice.
At Pattern, we prioritize brand obsession for a reason—we know that a brand-centered mindset makes a crucial difference in the outcomes and results our partners achieve. So in our experience, when you begin your search for an ecommerce consultant, it’s important to look for a partner who is specialized in ecommerce, invested in the product, and passionate about helping brands build and improve their strategies. Typically, this means finding someone that consults exclusively for ecommerce marketplaces, rather than choosing a consultant who offers many different services.
It’s also important to avoid choosing a consulting partner who can’t deliver the right experience for your brand. The best indication of whether your potential consultant can do that is to review their history, data, and results with other brands. Ask if they’ve helped others in your selling category, if they’ve solved specific issues your brand is facing, and why they feel you are a good fit. The key is to leave the conversation feeling confident that you understand your consultants’ capabilities and whether or not they match up with your needs.
It’s best to pick a consultant who knows how to guide a brand onto and through multiple marketplaces worldwide. You’ll want to take a look at your long-term strategy and think about the regions and platforms you’re currently on and where you might want to take your brand in the future. If your consultant is truly great at what they do, they’ll be able to help you perform well enough with your current product roadmap that it’ll be a no-brainer to expand your presence at the right time.
The most effective partnership with an ecommerce consultant will be able to give you both recommendations and point you to solutions for making those changes in your planning, processes, and execution. Your time and money is valuable, so you want to make sure that you’re spending it as efficiently as possible as you follow your consultant’s advice. So, before you commit to an ecommerce consultant, ask about the resources and concrete solutions they typically recommend to the brands they work with.
Finding an ecommerce consultant that checks the boxes can be a difficult task. At Pattern, our entire focus and drive centers around giving brands the tools and resources they need to succeed on domestic and international ecommerce marketplaces.
With over 100 global ecommerce consultants across 10 global offices, we have the right tools to partner with brands across the world to achieve better ecommerce success. We give specialized advice, then make sure our partners have all the adequate SEO, social media, CRM, Amazon multi-channel fulfillment services, and ecommerce outsourcing services they need.
Interested in ecommerce consulting services? Set up a call here to learn what Pattern can do for your brand on global marketplaces.