PPC Quick Start Guide – Sponsored Display

June 9, 2022 Chuck Kessler

PPC Quick Start Guide – Sponsored Display

Here's How to Take Advantage of Amazon’s Closely Guarded First-Party Data to Put Your Product (and Brand) in the Spotlight

In two recent PPC Quick Start Guides, I profiled Amazon Sponsored Products and Sponsored Brands advertising. In both of those blog posts I referenced the more than 2,000 new sellers that have joined Amazon’s twenty global marketplaces every day since 2016. 

That’s why it’s become increasingly important to find a way to set yourself apart. In 2022, one big way to do that is to take advantage of Amazon’s closely guarded first-party data and use audience targeting to keep your product (and brand) in the front of your prospective customers’ minds. 

Experienced Amazon sellers know how effective it is to use sponsored Products and Sponsored Brands to ensure that your Amazon product shows up prominently in search results. They’re also a great way to establish brand recognition. But, they can have their limitations. Particularly when shoppers leave the product page on Amazon.

What Amazon Sponsored Display Advertising Does Differently

Yes, it occasionally feels funny to be “tracked” across platforms. Still, I know myself that it’s that kind of follow through (from advertisers) that in many cases results in me purchasing something that I otherwise wouldn’t. 

One big difference between Sponsored Display ads and the rest of Amazon’s advertising models is that the program doesn’t only target keywords. Sponsored Display ads primarily target shoppers based on their interests and behavior. 

While a customer is shopping, Amazon’s data robots are busily collecting information on their behavior and habits. Later, Amazon Sponsored Display shows similar results (ads) to the same customer across various Amazon pages, competitor listings, as well as third-party websites and apps. 

Amazon Sponsored Display ads can require higher levels of eCommerce know-how. If you’re just getting started selling on Amazon, it might be a good idea to take a look at the first PPC Quick Start Guide, featuring Sponsored Products, or second, on Sponsored Brands before diving into this guide. Both of those previous PPC Quick Start Guides include an intro on PPC basics as well as a section on PPC vocabulary

However, if you’re right where you want to be, let’s dive into Amazon Sponsored Display advertising. 

Image credit: Amazon

How to Get Started With Amazon Sponsored Display Ads

There are two main types of targeting options available with Sponsored Display ads: product targeting, and audience campaigns. Amazon sellers can also implement purchases remarketing to target previous audiences of their promoted products, other popular products, as well as products from specific retail categories.

  • Product targeting allows advertisers to cross-sell to shoppers viewing similar or complementary products or categories with ASIN-level controls. 
  • Audience campaigns can help advertisers re-engage audiences that have viewed a product’s detail page, detail pages of similar products, and categories related to their advertised products.

One of the most powerful aspects of Amazon Sponsored Display advertising is that unlike product targeting with Sponsored Product and Sponsored Brands ads (where your ads show up at bottom of competitors’ listings), Sponsored Display ads show up in ultra-premium locations: above the fold, beneath the bold points or underneath the Buy Box. 

Because Sponsored Display is “retail aware,” Amazon sellers don’t have to worry about pausing their ads if advertised products go out of stock or are no longer the Featured Offer. Whenever that happens, ads pause automatically. 

What’s the Difference Between Product Targeting and Sponsored Display Audiences? 

Fortunately you don’t have to pick one or the other. Both help you reach relevant audiences. Product targeting allows you to target specific products and/or categories of detail pages on Amazon to help drive sales. Sponsored Display audiences allow you to use Amazon’s valuable first-party data. And, you can use them in conjunction with each other. You might consider using product targeting to help generate detail page traffic, and then Sponsored Display audiences to re-engage audiences to help secure missed sales opportunities or cultivate brand loyalty.

Amazon Sponsored Display Product Targeting

With Amazon Sponsored Display, it’s the products you choose to advertise that will help define your campaign. Your Amazon product listing will be highlighted in your ad creative, as well as in any ads that link to your detail pages. It’s important to make sure that your entire listing is fully optimized. That means high-quality images and video, informative titles, and well-crafted product descriptions. 

Using Sponsored Display Product Targeting you can optimize for page visits or conversions. This way you can drive traffic to your page to create momentum, or pivot to focus on conversions. 

Many shoppers end up discovering new products from ads and suggestions from product pages they visit during their shopping sessions. That’s why it’s important to carefully select the competing products (ASINS) that you want to target with your Sponsored Display Product campaigns.

Don’t forget about targeting your own products! Sponsored Display product targeting also allows you to cross-sell on your own detail pages while shoppers are already engaging with your brand.

Amazon Sponsored Display Audience Campaigns

Sponsored Display audiences use Amazon shopping signals to help advertisers engage shoppers across the purchase journey—both on and off Amazon. Amazon audiences are a way to engage new customers as well as to help you better learn about your brand on Amazon. You can build custom audiences that target Views Remarketing, Searches, and previous Purchases. 

Amazon audiences includes:

  • In-market: These are shoppers who might have just walked away from their cart and are still “in the aisle.” You can reach audiences in the same category as your advertised products to drive consideration, as well as try out entirely new segments to help drive product awareness.
  • Lifestyle: These audiences are a product of aggregated shopping and viewing behaviors, including shopping on Amazon, browsing on IMDb, streaming on Prime Video, or streaming on Twitch. 
  • Interests: Interest-based audiences drive awareness with prospective customers based on what they frequently browse and buy. 
  • Life events: Life events audiences help you build awareness for relevant products based around life moments, such as “travel,” or “marriage.”

Will Sponsored Display Ads Really Make You a Better Amazon Seller? 

This might be the most exciting aspect of Sponsored Display Ads; there’s a very good chance that they’re going to make you a better Amazon seller. That’s because they give you the opportunity to stand on Amazon’s (very) broad shoulders to better understand your prospective buyers. Being able to use Amazon’s first-party data to inform your decisions is a game changer. 

Campaign metrics such as sales, click-through rate (CTR), and new-to-brand (NTB) give you eCommerce X-ray vision and offer you a peek under Amazon’s hood. When you pair an innate understanding of your audience with a clear view of your advertising campaigns’ inner workings, selling on Amazon just gets easier.  

Last Thoughts

Back in the early days of Amazon, pay per click advertising was just one way of launching a product. Now it’s almost impossible to find success without it. Yes, there are some that do, but they’re the exception, not the rule. Here are 10 tips to get started quickly with Amazon advertising in 2022. And as always, if you have questions about Amazon advertising, the pros at CANOPY Management are here to help. 

CANOPY Management is a “full service” marketing agency for Amazon sellers, and our team consists of former Amazonians, multi-million dollar sellers, and award-winning experts. When you consider the ways in which CANOPY Management is able to help you grow your Amazon business, you’ll know why.

  • Strategic Growth Planning
  • Listing Copywriting Optimization
  • Listing Photography
  • Product Videography
  • Advertising Management
  • Customer Service
  • Demand Side Platform (Amazon DSP)
  • Amazon Posts
  • Full Service Management
  • Amazon Review Aggregation

Are you looking to expand your income stream, or transition away from your primary career? It’s a new year and with the growth of eCommerce, now is a great time to reap some benefits yourself!

Ready to Grow Your Amazon Business?

, , , , ,

Chuck Kessler

I'm a western Colorado based trail runner, climber, surfer, and adventurer who loves to write. My focus is on eCommerce and technology as the Content Manager and SEO Strategist at CANOPY Management.