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Amazon PPC Quick Start Guide – Sponsored Display

Take advantage of first-party data to engage (and re-engage) shoppers both on and off of Amazon to put your product in the spotlight

  • May 9, 2023
  • /
  • Brian R. Johnson
dark haired young woman holding a clipboard in front of a whiteboard

In two recent PPC Quick Start Guides, I profiled Amazon Sponsored Product and Sponsored Brand 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 a well built Amazon PPC ad has become the best way to set yourself apart and make sure your product is seen. One big way to do that is to take advantage of Amazon’s closely guarded first-party data and use audience targeting with your Amazon ad 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 Product and Sponsored Brand ads 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. A Display ad 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, the Sponsored Display ad 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 an Amazon Sponsored Display ad: 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.

One of the most powerful aspects of Amazon Sponsored Display advertising is that unlike product targeting with Sponsored Product and Sponsored Brand ad (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:

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. 

By using an Amazon Sponsored ad, 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. 

How Do Sponsored Display Campaigns Work?

A Sponsored Display campaign can be created quickly and is suitable for a wide variety of budgets and businesses. Just select the products that you want to promote, then choose your bid and daily budget to initiate your Sponsored Display campaign. Because Sponsored Display ads target audiences who have previously expressed interest in your product, similar products, or categories, you’ll be getting a significant headstart with your marketing efforts. 

Where Do Sponsored Display Ads Appear?

Sponsored Display ads appear on placements on the Amazon homepage, product detail pages, shopping results pages, as well as off-Amazon, third-party websites and apps, depending on the audiences or product targeting strategy you choose to employ.

Do I Need to Choose Keywords for a Sponsored Display Campaign?

No. That’s one of the most interesting things about Sponsored Display. It uses algorithmic shopping “signals” to automatically reach audiences who may be interested in your promoted product. With views targeting, Sponsored Display also dynamically promotes the most relevant product with the highest chance of conversion from the list of products you add to your campaign.

How Much Do Sponsored Display Ads Cost?

Like Sponsored Products or Sponsored Brands, Sponsored Display uses a cost-per-click model. You only pay when shoppers click on your ads. There is no minimum ad spend required. You’re able to choose your own daily bid and budget. Then, based on conversion potential, bids are automatically adjusted. At all times you have the ability to change your bid or pause your campaign.

How Do I Get Started with Sponsored Display Ads?

To create your first Sponsored Display campaign, sign in to your advertising console and click “create campaign” from within the campaign manager. Select the Sponsored Display ad type to start creating your campaign.

Don’t Forget About Amazon DSP Ads

Yes, this post is about Pay per Click advertising. Still, by starting your Amazon ad experience with a Sponsored Product ad, then building your skills with Sponsored Brand and Sponsored Display, you’ve positioned yourself perfectly to take the next step with your Amazon advertising. 

That means Amazon Demand Side Platform, or DSP advertising. Amazon DSP ads allow you to build on all the experience you’ve gained building an Amazon PPC ad strategy. 

Amazon DSP allows you to programmatically buy ads to reach new and existing audiences on and off Amazon. In terms of an Amazon sellers’ ability to dig into Amazon’s data then use it to “follow” shoppers on and off of Amazon, it’s next level. 

How Canopy Management Can Help

Amazon has been at the forefront of the eCommerce world for over two decades, providing a platform for millions of businesses to sell their products. With the rise of eCommerce, Amazon has become the go-to destination for shoppers across the world, making it a valuable advertising platform for businesses looking to reach new customers. 

 Back in the early days of Amazon, Amazon PPC 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 and Walmart sellers. Our team consists of former Amazonians, multi-million dollar sellers, and award-winning experts. When you consider the many ways that Canopy Management can help you grow your business, you’ll see why selling on Amazon is much easier “under the Canopy”:

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