Find and Target Competitors Through Amazon Advertising

Tana Cofer

April 23, 2021

Your list of competitors on Amazon is constantly evolving. This is mainly due to the fact that brands are continuing to launch on Amazon, even in 2021. The Coronavirus of 2020 played a large role in this last year, stemming an increase in brands moving to ecommerce.

According to Statista, “In June 2020, global retail e-commerce traffic stood at a record 22 billion monthly visits, with demand being exceptionally high for every-day items such as groceries, clothing, but also retail tech items.”

Now that we have established that the platform is growing and your brand now has more competitors than ever, the question remains, who are my competitors? How can I find them? Once I find them, what are my options to stand out?

All great questions, and we’re here to help. Read on for tricks to find your direct competitors AND strategies on how to target them through advertising.

How to Find Your Competitors:

Location 1: Product Rank

The simplest way to do this is to look at product rank.

Let’s use Thorne Prenatal supplements as an example.

Product Rank Example - Thorne Prenatal Supplements

Under ‘Product Details’ you will see a bolded section, “Best Seller Rank”. If you look under the sub-category this product is sold under you will see ‘#5 in Prenatal Vitamins”. Click on this hyperlink to be redirected to the top 100 products in this sub-category. These are going to show the list of products that sit next to you on the detail page as well as products that are performing similarly.

Best Seller Rank Example - Prenatal Vitamins

As of March 14th, 2021, the top 3 products in this sub-category are:

  1. Smarty Pants Prenatal
  2. Amazon Solimo Prenatal
  3. NatureMade Prenatal

Now, just because they are ranked number 1 doesn’t mean you will want to target them specifically. For example, the Solimo prenatal is $8.88, whereas the Thorne prenatal is $27.00. It may be difficult to convert a loyal Solimo prenatal shopper to a new product that is more than 3x the cost of their current choice.

However, it is important to know what brands are ranked similarly and even higher than your product. Rank is mostly determined by number of units sold, so if consumers are loving comparable products, they are definitely a competitor. If there is any chance you are fighting them for business, it’s worth your time exploring a strategy against them.

Location 2: Detail Page Recommendations

Once a consumer clicks on a product, they are taken to a detail page that is filled with not only information about the product, but also ads for competitors.

These placements are called Sponsored Product - Product Page Targeting, or Sponsored Display - ASIN targeting.

Here is a screenshot of a Sponsored Display ad on the Thorne Prenatal detail page.

Detail Page Recommendations Example - Sponsored Display Ad Example - Thorne Prenatal

See the Enfamil ad? This is a common placement for competitors to sit their ads on your detail pages.

It is important to keep an eye on what brands are bidding on your product detail pages so you know if they are trying to take advantage of your real estate.

Now, not every product ad that sits here is necessarily a competitor. However, if a brand is sitting here, they are hoping to take sway some of the customers that clicked on your product to switch over to them.

This is space you can be using to promote new products, coupon codes, and even a different variation of the product. This is where you can increase repeat customers or solidify a potential new customer.

Once I find my Amazon competitors, what can I do?

There are many options to how you can ensure your products are seen first. Here are 5 ways we recommend doing it.

1. Sponsored Display - ASIN level targeting

This ad type is one of the newer ones on the platform, so check out a more detailed explanation of Sponsored Display Ads to find out more about this product before utilizing its many features.

Now that you have a list of the products that are your competitors, target their detail pages and sit your ad directly underneath the bullet points or buybox. You will need a list of ASIN’s, a logo, and less than 50 characters of copy in order to launch this ad type successfully.

2. Sponsored Products - ASIN level targeting

If you look under targeting types, you will see ASIN/product level targeting as an option. This allows you to be on the detail page of the products under the carousel “sponsored products related to this item”. This is a common place for someone who is not 100% sold on the ASIN they are looking at, to view similar items. This is a great way to increase the number of impressions your product is getting as well.

3. Sponsored products - Keyword level targeting

This one is a hit or mess when it comes to RoAS. One way to be seen right when a consumer searches for your competitor, is to make sure your ad appears first on the search results page. For example, if a consumer types in “Smarty Pants Prenatal”, and you are bidding on that keyword, you can be the first ad that shows up. This also allows you to steal market share from a customer of Smarty Pants’.

Again, this one I have seen work extremely well, but I have also seen it drain money with little success. It is important to keep that in mind when launching this strategy and watch the ads performance over time.

4. Category Targeting

This can be done using all 3 ad products: Sponsored Products, Sponsored Brands, and Sponsored Display. When you go to the targets section where you normally ad keywords, click to add product targets and hover over categories.

Category Targeting - Product Targeting Example

These categories will feature your products on detail pages of products in your category, so much broader than the top 10 - 20 you pulled yourself!

This is a great strategy due to the fact that you can pull a search term report and see all of the ASINS Amazon deems you a competitor for!

5. Sponsored Brand Videos - Conquesting

Are your competitors taking advantage of the new Sponsored Brand Video ad products? If not, you should! If you have a great video showcasing your prenatal supplement, why not serve it on the search terms of competitors to stand out?

If you aren’t familiar with this ad type, check out what we have to say about Sponsored Brand Video and how it can help increase the reach of your brand.

These 5 ways to target your competitors are sure to help increase your overall detail page views, advertising impressions, and overall market share in your category.

Wnat to see what else is possible on Amazon with Pattern's expertise? Schedule a demo and learn more.

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Sept 27, 2022

Global Ecommerce Weekly News: 27th September 2022

Get up to date with this week's ecommerce headlines from around the globe. --- Amazon News --- Amazon drives renewable energy push with 71 new projects Amazon is planning to add 2.7 gigawatts of clean energy capacity through a couple of new projects as the company attempts to use 100% renewable energy by 2025. The ecommerce business will soon have a total of 329 renewable energy projects, generating 50,000 gigawatt hours of clean energy, which is equivalent to powering 4.6 million US homes every year. [Read more on Reuters](https://www.reuters.com/business/sustainable-business/amazon-drives-renewable-energy-push-with-71-new-projects-2022-09-21/) Amazon launches Prime Early Access Sale Amazon is launching a new 2-day shopping event for its Prime members only, beginning on the 11th of October. Across 15 countries, Prime customers will have access to the shopping event, with thousands of deals on offer globall, ranging from fashion to electronics to essentials. The event has the purpose of giving Prime users the chance to spread the cost of items over the winter months, 6 weeks ahead of Black Friday. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/26/prime-early-access-sale/) --- Other Marketplace News --- Shopify unveils new localisation tool Shopify is launching a new localisation tool, called Translate & Adapt, which works with Shopify Markets to offer localisation for sellers who are looking to expand into new markets. The tool translates a user’s online store into different languages, including product pages and information pages. Merchants are also able to create different shipping terms for each market using the new tool, which allows international expansion and offers a more localised consumer experience, unveiling new potential. [Read more on Ecommerce News](https://ecommercenews.eu/shopify-launches-new-localisation-tool/) Etsy is set to invest hundreds of millions into its marketing platform Etsy CEO claims that the company is on route to spend more than $570 million USD on marketing this year. Even during a time of macroeconomic pressure, inflation and rising interest rates, the company is preparing itself and its sellers for the upcoming holiday season and is focused on retaining interest from buyers. [Read more on Yahoo News](https://uk.news.yahoo.com/etsy-600-million-on-marketing-ceo-154054219.html) --- Other Ecommerce News --- Meta looks to cut costs by 10% in the coming months Meta employees are facing job redundancies as the company plans to cut its costs by 10% over the next few months. Meta reported a 22% YoY increase in costs and expenses, totalling over $20 billion USD. The cuts are expected to come in the form of job redundancies as a result of department reorganisations rather than formal layoffs. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/22/meta-to-slash-costs-by-10-over-coming-months/) DHL teams up with Quadient to offer smart locker deliveries in the UK DHL and tech company, Quadient, have partnered to offer smart lockers parcel pick-up throughout the UK. The new contactless, secure locker stations will give recipients more choice and flexibility to receive their parcels at a time and location best suited to them. The partnership plans to install 500 locker stations across the country by the end of 2022. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/21/dhl-partners-with-quadient-to-offer-smart-locker-delivery/) The online fashion market is set to be worth nearly $170 billion USD in 2025 The European online fashion retail market is set to grow 50% by 2025, with an online turnover of $170 billion USD, which is 33% of the retail branch’s total. Cross-border marketplaces prove to be the largest drivers of this growth, with online websites and apps like Vinted largely pushing the market’s online growth. Zalando recently became the largest cross-border fashion retailer/marketplace, responsible for 11.7% of the online market’s share. [Read more on Ecommerce News](https://ecommercenews.eu/online-fashion-market-worth-e175-billion-in-2025/)
Sept 26, 2022

Top 5 Ways to Prepare for Peak with Google Ads

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.

1. Go Early

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.

2. Get Ready for Privacy Changes

 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.

3. Ensure Consumers Can Discover your Brand

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)

4. Get Moving with Performance Max

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.

5. Flight Budgets Accordingly

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.

Sept 20, 2022

4 Ecommerce Marketplace Consultant Must-Haves

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. 

What is an Ecommerce Consultant?

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.

1. Brand Obsession/Specialization/Passion

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. 

2. Proven Results

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.

3. Wide Range of Marketplace Expertise

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.

4. Network of Resources

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.

Achieve Your Ecommerce Goals With Pattern

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.