We all shop online at this point. Many of us may have enjoyed shopping online for a few years, but the 2020 pandemic has turned us into a society of habitual online shoppers. The convenience of getting exactly what we want from the comfort of our sofas at two in the morning, knowing it will be on our doorstep in the next 48 hours, has adapted us to this click-to-purchase shopping environment fairly seamlessly.
The other part of this online shopping craze that has become second nature to us is Amazon Sponsored Display advertising. Just as the pandemic hit, Amazon geared up to roll out a whole new campaign type in their self-service portal. The timing could not have been more perfect for Amazon and its advertisers.
Since its release, we have been studying the Sponsored Display campaign’s performance, targeting opportunities, and use cases. We’re excited for the possibilities of these campaigns but are left wanting more from performance. First, let’s take a look at some of the actionable features of Sponsored Display campaigns.
- Sponsored Display Audience Targeting – Similar to Facebook ads and Amazon Demand Side Platform (DSP), Sponsored Display ads can target shoppers based on audiences rather than keyword searches. This has proven to be a powerful tool for our clients, reaching higher up the sales funnel and engaging with shoppers who fit their demographic. This targeting is robust and can be highly granular depending on the audience you are trying to reach.
- Remarketing – This feature is an immediate strategy our teams utilize on Google and Facebook advertising. We are now able to remarket on Amazon as well. We can create a Sponsored Display Remarketing campaign that can show to shoppers on and off Amazon who have visited the target detail page or the detail pages of similar products. These selections are automatically added when building an audience campaign, so be sure to remove them if that is not your goal for the particular campaign you’re building.
- Product ASIN Targeting – Another powerful feature of Sponsored Display campaigns is the ability to use product targeting. Product targeting isn’t terribly new to Amazon. Both Sponsored Product and Sponsored Brand campaigns have this targeting ability. What is powerful about product targeting with Sponsored Display is the ad placements you can earn with these campaigns. The placements appear directly on product detail pages below the Buy Box or key product features.
- Custom Creatives – Amazon has added the ability to add custom creatives to Sponsored Display campaigns instead of using the traditional company logo and 50 character headline. You must choose between one or the other when creating the campaign, and as of writing, the creative cannot be edited after launch the same way Sponsored Brand campaigns can.
- Performance – We have been left wanting more with the performance of Sponsored Display campaigns so far. The results, as expected, are highly dependent on the product mix, targeting method, and the audiences used for these campaigns. Bids tend to run higher than Sponsored Product and Sponsored Brand campaigns with a lower return. This drives ACoS up, but depending on the goal of your campaign, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Sponsored Display campaigns should be thought of as top-of-funnel campaigns on Amazon, designed to drive product discovery among new shoppers to the brand. Using Sponsored Display campaigns designed for remarketing keeps the shopper engaged until they are ready to purchase.
As Amazon continues to invest in Sponsored Display campaigns and add more features, we expect this campaign type to be critical to a brand’s success on Amazon. It’s an easy tool to use to drive new shoppers to product detail pages, provides ad placements that have never before been available to self-service advertisers, and can be customized to fit a brand’s goal.