#424 – Amazon PPC Campaign Setup, Optimization, Analysis & More With Destaney Wishon

Video of the episode at the bottom

In this episode, We’re back with another TACoS Tuesday episode where Helium 10’s Shivali Patel talks with Amazon PPC expert, Destaney Wishon of BetterAMS, to share her top recommendations and answers for common Amazon and Walmart PPC questions. Like campaign setups, using PPC or external traffic to get reviews, and the best ways to increase the organic rank for your product. We also learn the best ways how to monitor your conversion rates, CTRs, and CPCs for maximum efficiency. Learn whether you should run PPC for multiple products with the same category and search terms and gain valuable insights. Explore the perks of running branded campaigns and get tips for optimizing your existing Amazon PPC campaigns. Discover how vCPM can help you and learn how to understand order numbers in vCPM. Get answers to burning questions like how to reduce ACoS, if defensive product ads are profitable, and what the best ad placements are for new listings. Don’t miss out on this very information-packed episode!

In episode 424 of the Serious Sellers Podcast, Shivali and Destaney discuss:

  • 00:17 – The Best Way To Launch A New Product This 2023
  • 01:21 – Recommended Campaign Setups
  • 02:50 – Using PPC Or External Traffic To Get Reviews
  • 06:30 – How To Increase The Organic Rank For A Product
  • 08:45 – Will Lightning Deals Help You Out?
  • 11:00 – Conversion Rates, CTRs, and CPCs: What Should You Monitor For Efficiency
  • 12:30 – 20 Different Product With The Same Category And Search Terms: Should I Run PPC For All Of Them?
  • 13:30 – Talking About A/B Hero Image Testings & Sponsored Brand Ads
  • 14:50 – Sponsored Brands Videos Traffic Compared To Sponsored Product Ads
  • 16:00 – Tips To Optimize Your Existing Amazon PPC Campaigns
  • 20:00 – Is Destaney Using vCPM, And How Did It Perform For Them?
  • 21:30 – Running Auto Campaigns And Targeting Each Match Type In A Separate Ad Group
  • 22:40 – How To Understand Order Numbers In vCPM
  • 25:10 – Talking About Competitor Targeting Ads Strategies
  • 26:40 – What Are The Perks Of Running Branded Campaigns?
  • 27:30 – Campaign Structure Ranking – Single Keyword/ASIN Or Multi Keyword/ASIN
  • 29:00 – Which Ad Types Drive The Most Sales?
  • 29:40 – What’s The Best Way To Track Organic And Paid Relationships?
  • 30:50 – What Do You Do If You Have High ACoS?
  • 32:00 – What About Defensive Product Ads? Is It Profitable?
  • 33:25 – How Do We Reduce PPC Cost If You Already Rank Well In Sponsored Ads
  • 34:25 – What Will Be Your Launching Strategy For A New Product In The Bedding Category?
  • 35:20 – Why Are We Getting So Manny Impressions And Clicks But Not Sales?
  • 36:35 – What Are The Best Ad Placements For New Listings For Greater Exposure?
  • 37:30 – How To Get In Touch With Destaney Wishon

Transcript

Bradley Sutton:

Today we’ve got another episode of our Tacos Tuesday where we bring on a guest expert who answers all of your top Amazon and Walmart advertising questions. How cool is that? Pretty cool I think

Bradley Sutton:

If you’re like me, maybe you were intimidated about learning how to do Amazon PPC or maybe you think you just don’t have the hours and hours that it takes to download and sort through all of those sponsored ads reports that Amazon produces for you. Adtomic for me allowed me to learn PPC for the first time, and now I’m managing over 150 PPC campaigns across all of my accounts in only two hours a week. Find out how Adtomic can help you level up your PPC game. Visit h10.me/adtomic for more information. That’s h10.me/adtomic. Hello everybody and welcome to another episode of the Serious Sellers Podcast by Helium 10. I am your host, Bradley Sutton. And this is the show that’s a completely BS free, unscripted and unrehearsed organic conversation about sir strategies for serious sellers of any level in the e-commerce world. And as mentioned, this is another episode of our Tacos Tuesday where we talk about anything and everything, Amazon and Walmart advertising.

Bradley Sutton:

And it’s not just coming from us. We always like to bring outside experts on the topic. And so for this month, Shivali is actually bringing on Destaney from BetterAMS. And you know, she’s been on the podcast a few times, but you know, she manages millions, tens of millions of dollars of spend out there. She really knows what she’s talking about. And you guys actually had some fire questions lately on this. Like one of them was, hey, I’ve got more than 20 different products in the same category and it’s should I run the same search term target on all of my products? Somebody else ask about, you know launch kind of techniques. There is about like 15, 20 questions in all and we’ve got some of the best ones here in these clips here. So let’s go ahead and let Shali and Destiny take it away.

Shivali:

Hello, welcome to Tacos Tuesday. We do have a very special guest for you today to answer all things Amazon advertising. So let me bring on Destaney from BetterAMS.

Destaney:

Hello. Hello. Thank you so much for having me.

Shivali:

Now, knowing what you know and all the clients you’ve worked with, I mean all the experience that you have, what would you say is in 2023 the best way to maybe launch a new product?

Destaney:

Yeah, so it’s gotten so much more complex if we’re being fully transparent and that’s because Amazon’s realize the value of Amazon advertising and the value of their, their own platform. and they’re making changes like weekly. I mean there’s days where I login to ad console and I’m like, that’s never been there before. So if I had to give any recommendations it’d be to really zero in on education because the platform’s changing so quickly, it’s not the same Amazon of six years ago. You need to stay up to date and follow really relevant content. I know that’s not super actionable advice, but I think it’s something that I see across the board is like education’s the most important thing to keep up with in the e-commerce space.

Shivali:

Yeah, it definitely is. I mean it’s such a rapidly expanding space as well. Like you said, there’s always new things. So as far as maybe campaign setups go, do you kind of have like a recommendation of II’m sure it’s different, right on based on what kind of budget you start with. But let’s say somebody has a a more limited smaller budget. What is sort of the process that you would recommend or suggest?

Destaney:

So a few of the key principles that we recommend is one, having really good structure and naming in defining that before you start launching. So a quick tip on our end is to make sure you include the ASIN into your campaign name. Amazon doesn’t really give you great reporting on what search terms came from what ASIN. So every campaign we create, we put the ASIN name in there. Other small tips is we don’t run multiple ad groups. The reason being is budgeting is on the campaign level. So if you have a $50 a day budget in multiple ad groups, you can’t control where that budget’s going, Amazon is. So it may spend all of your money on your least profitable ad group. So we run one campaign, one ad group, typically one ASIN. Now this isn’t an easy setup to scale, but what it does is it gives us a foundation for improved reporting, improved navigation of advertising console and improved budget distribution. We can then say these ASINs get this much budget per day. Other small things that we like to include sponsor products typically drives the highest amount of sales, which means it’s more likely gonna influence your ranking. We typically don’t put more than 20 to 30 keywords into a campaign because again budget, if you have a hundred dollars a day budget and a hundred keywords, you’re not gonna collect data across all those keywords. It’s not enough money. I think those are probably the basics I would recommend.

Shivali:

Yeah. and then as far as PPC, like do you end up using it for review acquisition or do you end up like having people use external traffic for reviews before they go into PPC?

Destaney:

We typically see how competitive the category is first in all honesty. PPC is one of the highest converting traffic sources you can have with Amazon. But if you’re in the supplement space and it’s costing you $7 a click, it’s probably cheaper to drive traffic elsewhere in order to acquire reviews because your conversion rate’s not gonna be that high in the beginning stages when you don’t have reviews. Now if you don’t know how competitive your category is, go into campaign manager, start a manual campaign, put your top five keywords in there, broad phrase and exact and see how high the suggested bids go. Now I know there’s a lot of conflicting opinions about suggested bids and how they’re not too accurate, but at the end of the day, suggested bids are an average of every single placement on Amazon. So if you see an $8 suggested bid, that’s probably close to how expensive it is to win top of search, which is the highest volume traffic. So if I see my suggested bids or around $7, I’m gonna be like no, I should find other ways to drive traffic, get reviews, and then when I’m converting better I can compete in that space.

Shivali:

Got it. Yeah, you answered that question that was gonna be my next question and where you stand on suggested bids cuz you know it is basically an auction.

Destaney:

I would like to actually this comes up all the time in the helium tin group and I am in the group like constantly and this is just one of those questions of like, hey, suggested bids aren’t accurate, don’t believe in them, but at the end of the day there’s like over a hundred different placements for any one keyword. You have the top four placements on the top of the page you have the product detail page which has carousel and then you have page two, page three, page four, and page five. So suggested bids are just giving you a range of all those placements. It’s not necessarily accurate but it’s an average. So on the low end, if you’re paying 30 cents, you’re probably gonna show up on page two or three. So it’s gonna be profitable but lower volume on the high end, if it’s five to $6, you’re probably gonna show up on the top of page one but it’s gonna be less profitable cause it’s so expensive but it’s gonna maximize your volume. So it is definitely an average and it kind of helps you see how expensive a category is but don’t give it too much weight.

Shivali:

Yeah. Okay. All right. So as far as, let’s say keywords, right, when would you say someone should switch over the keywords into a negative match campaign?

Destaney:

Yeah, so we don’t typically do a lot of negative targeting, but that’s because we focus strictly on bid management and it’s really, there’s a lot of variables here. If you have a $10 a day product or $10 product in general, you can’t get a hundred clicks in one order. Like that’s not gonna be profitable for you. So then you maybe negate that keyword. But if you have a $300 product, you can get a hundred clicks in one order, that’s still gonna be profitable for you. So there’s a lot of different variables with conversion rate, but what I prefer to do is lower my bid because if I lower it to 10 cents, it’s probably gonna do the same as negating a keyword and that’s gonna stop the majority of your traffic. But it’s still gonna keep a small window open for really, really cheap bids and placements. So if you’ve ever heard of a catch-all campaign, everyone says create a campaign throw are all 30 of your products in there with a 10 cent bid, it’s the same purpose. It’s gonna allow that keyword to continue going from a really, really profitable perspective, but it’s gonna cut all of your wasted spin and your traffic.

Shivali:

All right. Now I see we have a couple of questions populating in so I’m gonna go ahead and showcase those. “Hi Destaney, the tacos webinar you had done one month ago was great and very helpful. I have a case where I’m facing higher CPC against the t o s and that particular item has very lost, very less organic ranks. Whenever I try to focus on ranks, I lose a lot of money. Current strategy, I was focusing to acquire sales from video ads, broad and phrase along with focus on product pages too. A lot of the price war is in the market too. How to increase the organic disability for that item?”

Destaney:

This is a great question. So first and foremost, the thing that’s gonna drive your organic rank the most is those top of search exact match campaigns because you’re saying, “Hey, I’m selling a red marker, I’m bidding on a red marker. You’re driving exact traffic, you’re telling the algorithm this is where I need to be organically ranked well.” Now if your conversion rate’s poor on this red marker, you’re not gonna rank well. So always start with understanding your conversion rate and your conversion rate relative to category. I think I talked about that in the webinar. Now if you can’t afford that then you’re probably gonna need to go a little bit more long tail. I wouldn’t necessarily go broad phrase or video because it’s gonna drive a lot less volume and it’s going to distribute your budget so it’s not gonna influence your rank as much.

Destaney:

So instead maybe look at red marker for college students and try to incrementally increase your organic rank on those long tail terms. And then as you do the additional sales volume from top line revenue is gonna give you a little bit more wiggle room with tacos. Now broad phrase and video are all amazing, but they’re typically more profitability focused ad types so they’re not necessarily gonna improve your organic rink as much as that TOS campaign. So you kind of just have to find a way to compete. You may take a loss on that, but if we go back to five to six years ago how everyone used to rank it was through giveaways. So they would say, Hey, I’m setting aside $3,000 worth of inventory and I’m gonna give it away to people organic rank. With PPCs the same, you’re gonna have to create campaigns that you’re potentially gonna take a loss on knowing that the long-term goal is organic rank and your tacos will balance out three to six months from now.

Shivali:

Okay, I have another question here. “t says I’m focusing on the long tail. So I believe this is the first question that we had discussed. I’m focusing on long tail with fixed bid strategies. I have a good CVR of 30% on TOS, but with such bidding tight, my way of bidding is to set the bid is around one to $2 with higher TOS in such a way it does not bring consistent sales. So will LD help you out?”

Destaney:

I’m assuming LD is Lightning Deal.

Shivali:

I believe so, yeah.

Destaney:

So one thing I’m gonna say not related to the lightning deal aspect of this question is placement modifiers are picky. If you read the rules in Amazon documentation on placement modifiers they say that they’re only gonna increase the bid based off the likelihood of a sale. So that means if Amazon doesn’t think you’re gonna convert, they’re not gonna increase your bid and you’re kind of playing with fire cuz you’re hoping Amazon’s gonna increase your bid. So although there is instances where I do recommend running placement modifiers, this is one where if you’re really all in on a keyword because it’s amazing, just increase your bid to 10 to $15 So that way you know for a fact you’re gonna be winning that placement and you’re not relying on Amazon to hopefully increase your bid based off the placement modifier. Now again, when I’m giving these strategies you have to be super careful cuz you could bleed a ton of money and it may not make sense for you.

Destaney:

So I want to make sure people really understand that this is a ranking strategy and you need to watch it very, very closely or else you’re gonna hemorrhage money and you cannot afford to win this traffic a hundred percent of the time. Now to get to the lightning deal portion, yes deals and discounts in general typically help ads because your conversionary increases so it can make that traffic more affordable. If you’re converting 30% now and then you post a lightning deal, that lightning deal badging is going to show up on your ad, they’re gonna see it directly at the top of search. So now you’re getting maximum traffic and exposure cause it’s the first advertising spot a customer sees and they see that it’s discounted. So traffic’s gonna increase, clickthrough rate’s gonna increase in conversion rate’s gonna increase a ton. The part you’re gonna need to consider as a brand owner is can you afford that traffic at the top of the page, which is expensive and at a discounted rate with a lightning deal possibly not. So you’re gonna have to be very careful around how much of a discount you can afford to achieve that form of organic rank.

Shivali:

Thank you for answering that. So I know we talked about the conversion rate and you talked a little bit about the click through rate. What are some KPIs I guess, that you suggest people monitor just to make sure for efficiency and that you’re getting the most out of those campaigns that people are setting up?

Destaney:

Yeah, I think the two biggest ones in my opinion are conversion rate and CPC. CPC is like the largest variable you can control on Amazon advertising. Like your bid is the number one first lever you should be looking at polling when you’re focusing on optimization. Budget is okay but it really doesn’t affect the campaign performance, it just stops it or makes it spend more money. Your bid is what makes it profitable. So highly, highly recommend understanding bid management before anything else when it comes to PPP C and Amazon ads. And then conversion rate super important in my opinion cause that actually shows you the amount of people that land on your page and buy your product, click the rate’s. Okay. But the reason I don’t put too much weight in a click the rate is because it varies a ton depending on the keywords that you’re targeting similar to conversion rate but it varies a ton by category, by products and by your first image, which sometimes you can’t control with Amazon ads. So if you have a terrible first image, your click through rate’s gonna be lower. If you have an amazing first image, your click through rate’s gonna be higher. So I don’t put a lot of weight to click through rate typically.

Shivali:

All right. Now I do have another question here. “If I have more than 20 different products in the same category, in the same search term, should I run PPC for all the products?”

Destaney:

Mm, this one’s always like one of those questions I go back and forth on. I would say no, not typically, but it also depends on your brand goals. Typically I would recommend starting with PPC on your top 20% highest sales driving campaigns 80 20. But if you are launching new products and your bottom 10% needs exposure because they’re brand new, you’re gonna wanna run PPC on those. Or if some of your products are ranked in the top four, maybe you don’t run ads on those because they have maximum visibility and instead you run ads on your other products so that way you’re winning all eight, the first four sponsored product placements and the first four organically ranked placements. Like there’s a lot of variables there and it also depends on your budget, it also depends on your tacos. At the end of the day you want to maximize exposure for all of your products but some people can’t afford that so it’s not a fantastic answer to give

Shivali:

To the next question then. Do you use AB hero image testing that much in your agency? Something we are looking at is as Amazon is getting very relaxed with hero images, we have seen significant clickthrough rate uplifts. Do you have any thoughts on this?

Destaney:

Yeah, so if we’re talking about the actual like made image on a listing, our agency does zero creative work. We typically only work with established sellers so we’re really blessed that we don’t have to kind of manage that side of the business. So I can’t give really honest feedback on that. Now when it comes to like a sponsored brand ad, you can upload a lifestyle image and we do play around a lot with that testing. We have seen click the rates of upwards of a 500% increase by adding a lifestyle image to a sponsored brand ad. Now if anyone’s curious how to do this, if you’ve been on Amazon and you’ve seen the really big lifestyle images at the top of the page, that is a sponsored brand ad with a custom image uploaded and that custom image is typically lifestyle. Those are very, very beneficial. And in general, you know you have to have an amazing first image to make your advertising good because if your product’s not converting well, your ads aren’t gonna convert well either.

Shivali:

Okay and that same person says I love the sponsored brand videos. Brands rarely utilize this plus it’s the only moving graphic on the screen. I’m guessing this will rank the same as sponsored products granted getting the granted that you’re getting the orders or is it weighted sponsored product keywords more?

Destaney:

Yeah, so for almost all of our brands we maximize sponsor brands’ video. I mean like every single brand has video assets running and we are targeting just as many keywords as sponsor products with the same bids, right? So in theory they should be driving the same amount of traffic. In reality that’s not how it works. Sponsor products get 10 times more clicks than sponsor brands because sponsor products don’t look like an ad. So customers inherently click on them much more cause that looks like an organic listing. So with that being said and with the volume being one of the, the major factors in organic rank sponsor brands’ video do not drive organic rank increases near as much as sponsored products. They are one of my favorite ad types and Amazon’s expanding them a ton. Amazon’s now launching sponsor Brands’ video at the very top of search. They’re now launching sponsor Brands’ video on the product detail page and off platform you can run sponsor brands OTT ads on Fire TV and Kindle devices. So definitely, definitely if you walk away with anything from this question inve invest in your videos but when it comes to organic rank they just can’t match the volume due to customer shopping habits.

Shivali:

Destiny, what would you say are maybe a couple of tips to really help people optimize their existing campaigns?

Destaney:

Yeah, so one of the first things I’ve been doing when I’ve been auditing brands is relying on the targeting tab. So if you go into advertising console in the top left-hand corner, you’re gonna see targeting under your campaign manager, something around those and the targeting tab actually allows you to add a column for conversion rate. So if you have been in advertising console for a while, you know we’ve never been given access to conversion rate on the keyword level, well within the targeting tab we now have that. So that’s been super, super helpful for any brand owner. Even if you don’t manage p c, even if you outsource it, go into add console, open up your targeting tab, filter top down by spend and look at where your spend is going. Your highest spending targets should be your highest converting targets and the most aligned keywords for your products. That is like the number one quickest way to audit your brand performance. If you see that the top of your targeting tab has auto campaigns category targeting or product targeting, you’re probably not optimizing your PPC the best way possible because it’s not actually gonna improve your organic rank that much.

Shivali:

Okay and have you found that longer tail keywords tend to affect that conversion rate?

Destaney:

A hundred percent. We’ve actually pulled a lot of data from Pacvue with this. Pacvue has a really great feature that shows you one keyword versus two keyword versus three versus four versus five, four to five word keywords typically convert way, way, way, way better than everything else because they’re so precise. So instead of targeting red markers, I’m now targeting red markers for college art students, which means anyone who’s typing that in knows exactly what they’re looking for so it’s a lot more aligned. So your conversion rate’s higher, your CPCs are typically cheaper because Sharpie’s not doing that type of keyword research that takes a lot of time so you’re gonna see a lot more profitable results now you can’t drive as much volume, most customers are typing in red marker but it’s really, really profitable for you.

Shivali:

Got it. And let’s say that maybe I wanted to increase my impression share or my click share on Amazon, how can I do that? Would that be by incorporating more long tail keywords or would it be I’m measuring a different kpi?

Destaney:

Yep, so impression share is one of my new favorite KPIs that we use when it comes to like a market share play and there’s kind of this little caveat with impression share that if you think about how a Amazon advertising placements are on the page as a customer you always see the first headline search ad and the first four sponsor product placements. You cannot shop on Amazon without seeing those placements. So if you wanna increase your impression share, all you have to do is bid high enough to win those first four placements on the page. Now some people don’t believe me when I say this and I’m always like, go into your campaign right now, choose one exact match keyword and put a $40 bid. I guarantee you if it’s a relevant keyword within five to 10 minutes you’re gonna be the first ad on the page.

Destaney:

Now again, don’t go set a $40 bid and then complain to me that your ACoS is high and you lost a lot of money. But at the end of the day it’s that easy to have precise targeting on Amazon. Someone actually sent me this Instagram question for this ask me anything they said, you know, how do you directly control placements? We do it by creating one campaign, one ad group, one keyword. So if I wanna win red marker 90% of the time and I’m selling a red sharpie, all I have to do is set a $40 bid and I’m gonna win it almost 90% of the time. It’s that easy to control placement potential.

Shivali:

Okay. I also have another question here from Umer, hopefully I pronounce that right. Have you worked on vCPM and how did they perform for you and which type of audience or contextual targeting worked well for you?

Destaney:

This is a fantastic question. I want to kind of give some context on view CPM. So traditional advertising with a Amazon typically pay per click so someone clicks on your ad and then you’re charged view CPM means you’re charged every single time someone views your ad. And a thousand views I think is typically when we’re charged. Now there’s one really interesting rule within vCPM campaigns and it’s that a customer only has to view the ad for one second, that’s it, view it for one second and why this is important to know is say you’re on someone’s product detail page and you quickly glance at an ad below but you don’t actually look at it and then you go buy that product later. That a’s getting attributed the sale, which isn’t necessarily accurate because one second’s not a lot at all. I spend so much time on product detail pages and I view the carousel but it doesn’t actually mean I paid attention or clicked on the ad. So view CPM performances usually amazing. You’ll typically see an amazing ACoS and an amazing RoAS at the campaign level and then you realize that’s inflating your performance because someone probably bought that product organically but viewed your ad for one second which inflated your performance. So that’s something that I would kind of recommend when it comes to view ccpm, it’s majorly, majorly inflated and probably cannibalizing your organic a little bit.

Shivali:

Masks do you suggest to run auto campaigns? If so, do you recommend targeting each match type in separate at group?

Destaney:

This is like one of the first big strategies I rolled out in Helium 10 was to run these separately. So we run auto campaigns for almost every single product and we continue to run auto campaigns even when all of our manual campaigns are set up just with lower bids and lower budgets because they are great for data collection. So yes to that close and loose match are typically what’s gonna drive the more profitable terms cuz they’re usually more related. Compliments and substitutes are typically broader terms, more category terms that aren’t as related. So again, if I’m targeting red marker and compliments or substitutes, I may show up for art supplies so it’s not as aligned, typically not as profitable but we continue to run them because it’s great for keyword research, it’s gonna constantly do a lot of that work for us and give us new terms to target.

Shivali:

Thank you. We also have view CPM shows more orders than in real. So how do we understand how many orders we really had?

Destaney:

So I actually think that as of right now there’s a slight glitch with an ad console where you’ll see different performance in the targeting tab. Like if you open up the targeting tab, I’m pretty sure they’re showing data for View CPM on a pay per click level attributed to the click. So that’s one way to show us pull up your targeting tab and see if your ACoS is different for that campaign within targeting tab versus the campaign name. The targeting tab I think shows you attributed on the click the campaign shows you attributed on the view. At the end of the day though, like Amazon’s not lying about your data, they are real orders but they’re orders that probably would’ve came in anyways organically and you didn’t necessarily need that ad. So we still run vCPM but we are very honest to clients we’re not gonna go tell a client, hey yeah this campaign’s running at a five person A cost all your others at a 40, it’s a hack. That’s not true. It’s just being attributed different like a similar to a regular display model.

Shivali:

All right, Umer asks, what about the contextual or audience targeting? Has that worked well for you? I’m talking about the View CPM

Destaney:

Yep, a hundred percent. Now you gotta remember when you’re starting to get into display targeting you’re usually moving up the funnel. So Amazon advertising super powerful because you know if someone types in red marker they’re looking for a red marker like they typed it in, they’re gonna buy it. So that’s why PPC is so powerful As we’re moving into sponsor display, you’re actually going out and finding customers and bringing them to you. So now I’m going and saying, hey you didn’t tar type in red marker but you bought paint supplies six months ago so I’m assuming you’re into art so I’m gonna make sure you know about my product. It’s more disruptive. So with that it changes performance. So contextual targeting is kind of moving up the funnel a little bit and it’s going a little bit broader. Now if you wanna stay bottom of the funnel, remarketing is typically what’s gonna perform best. As with any other platform you’re saying hey you already viewed my product or my competitor’s product, I’m serving you an ad, I know you’re looking for markers. And then contextual car targeting is where you’re gonna start moving into like lifestyle and all these different variations and they can all perform well but they’re probably not gonna be super profitable. This should not be an ACoS campaign, this should be a campaign looking at impressions, clicks, detail page views and things like that to indicate what’s good performance for you.

Shivali:

All right, let’s switch some gears and talk a little bit about competitor targeting as well. So how do you really determine which products maybe you want to run specific ads for that are not your own products?

Destaney:

Yep. So if we think about a customer, if I am looking at Coke like Coca-Cola products on Amazon and I’m served a Pepsi ad, I’m probably not interested in Pepsi, I typed in Coca-Cola and I’m looking at a Coca-Cola product detail page. Product targeting should be viewed in a similar fashion in that it’s gonna be really hard to get a customer to go, Hey you’re looking at my competitor but I want you to buy my product. Now as a customer, there’s a few things that typically make us make that decision a lower price point. So if you have a lower price point than all of your competitors, you should put them into a competitor targeting campaign. If you have a competitive advantage, maybe they only have the blue color and you have red show your product under their listing and run competitor targeting. If they have poor reviews, maybe they got a one-star review that really lowered their average ratings show up underneath them. Those are typically the three biggest things that we run. Competitor targeting on review advantage, price advantage, competitive advantage. And then if we’re filling really, really competitive and we have some money to spend, we’ll start looking at things like, hey I’m selling baby wipes, let’s target diapers. And that way you can get a customer to buy both like similar to a frequently bought together section.

Shivali:

Awesome. What about branded campaigns? Are there perks to it? Why would someone want to run a branded campaign?

Destaney:

Yeah, so branded campaigns are incredibly, incredibly valuable because if someone’s going to your going to Amazon and typing in your brand name, you want to show them your products immediately and everyone’s like, well I’m already ranked well why would I run ads? And the reason being is if you’re not running ads, your competitor is and you don’t wanna lose market share to that competitor. Now if you have a super limited budget, I would say focus on non-branded first because you can assume if a customer’s typing in your brand name, they’re more than likely gonna buy your branded product. I just don’t like to take the risk that they’re gonna type in my brand name and buy my competitor’s products because they’re running ads on my page.

Shivali:

Good point.

Destaney:

I have some questions for my Instagram that we can dive into as well.

Shivali:

Yes, sure.

Destaney:

Campaign structure and ranking, single keyword versus multi keyword, single ASIN versus multi ASIN. Yeah, so we almost always run single ASIN because again I like control. I don’t like Amazon being able to decide where they’re spending my money. If you have 20 ASINs in a campaign, you can’t control what ASINs get the most volume. Even if one is way more profitable, you have no control. So that’s why we run single as I. And then when it comes to single keyword campaigns, we do run single keyword campaigns for the keywords that are most important for us because again, I wanna control my budget a hundred percent. You know, someone mentioned, hey it’s so expensive for this keyword, well that’s fine, let’s only give that keyword a hundred dollars a day then because we can’t afford to give it a thousand dollars a day. So I wanna be able to control my budget. Now at scale single keyword campaigns are a pain, like anyone who actually is doing great keyword research does not want 3000 single keyword campaigns running in their account. It’s not scalable. Campaign naming is terrible, it doesn’t look fantastic. So we only do this for our most expensive highest volume keywords.

Shivali:

As far as the styles of different advertising, is there one that drives more volume would you say like sponsored products or sponsored display?

Destaney:

So we invest in all ad types like maximizing all ad types, like every single one of our brands is running sponsor display, contextual targeting, audience targeting, remarketing, D S P, sponsored product sponsor brands, sponsor brands, video, everything. And still to this day sponsored products drive around 75 to 80% of overall sales and that’s because they have more placements and better placements than anything else. Sponsor brands typically drives around 10 to 15% of traffic. So if you’re not running those, you’re leaving money on the table. And sponsor brands allows you to advertise multiple products for the price of one click. So it can be very efficient sponsor brands video typically drives around five to 10% of additional advertising traffic, but it’s a little bit limited based on inventory. There’s not a lot of placements on the page for it, so you can kind of max it out.

Destaney:

Sponsored display is typically like another five to 10% depending on how you’re distributing your budgets, but it’s usually not quite as profitable because it’s against more competitive ad type and you’re moving up the funnel. Another question I got is, what’s the best way to track organic and paid relationship from a ranking point of view? This has been I feel like one of the biggest questions that everyone’s trying to solve in all honesty because at the end of the day you can lose money on ads, but as long as your ranking is increasing you can still continue to be really, really profitable. And someone mentioned, I I did a webinar on tacos a while ago and this is exactly what we talked about is how you can use your ads to improve your organic rank. So what we have been relying on for right now just due to limited KPIs is TACoS.

Destaney:

So what we wanna see is if we increase our advertising spend, ideally our organic sales are also increASINg so our tacos is staying the same. So we’ve been relying on tacos on the ASIN level to really track month over month changes. If our tacos increases, we either have less efficient spend or organic rank decreased. And that’s how we’ve been balancing. If you really wanna get into the weeds, if you’re really advanced, you’re gonna start layering in things like search query performance report saying hey, if I spend more money on this keyword, does my brand share also increase for that keyword? But that’s really new and really, really complex to get into.

Shivali:

What do you recommend someone does if they have too high of an ACoS?

Destaney:

Yep. So I think the first thing is to identify why is your ACoS high? Is your a cost high because your bids are too high, look at your CPCs or is your a cost high because your conversion rate is too low? And then once you identify those problems you can figure out the right solution. If your bids are too high, just lower your bids. If your conversion rate’s too low, you need to improve your targets and or improve your listing. And a great way to understand your listing conversion rate is to go into advertising console and to look at brand metrics. Brand metrics shows you your overall conversion rate relative to your whole category. They give you your category average and your category top conversion rate. So you can say, hey, within art supplies I have a 20% conversion rate, average conversion rate’s 30%, I need to improve my listing.

Shivali:

We have another question here. What about defensive product ads? I mean targeting one’s own products with different other products from our own catalog. Is that profitable and what’s your experience with it?

Destaney:

This is a hundred percent a strategy we recommend. They’re typically pretty profitable. Now there’s a few things you wanna look at here. So for example, if I have a $50 product and a $20 product, I probably don’t wanna show my $20 product on my $50 product because now people are gonna be like, why would I buy this expensive one with a higher, maybe it’s a higher quality or higher quantity count and then they’re gonna just buy your $20 product. So be very careful with like your pricing here, but at the end of the day it’s a great opportunity to cross sell your products. It also defends those placements so that way your competitors aren’t showing up there. That’s kind of the main reason to do it is cuz you don’t want your competitors winning that placement. I would rather have my own products that are less profitable than my competitor’s products that I’m just gonna completely lose. But a few ways to be more strategic around it is, for example, if I’m selling protein, maybe I wanna sell my pre-workout under that listing so that way they buy both instead of one or the other. It’s like how do you increase your overall kind of order quantity in basket quantity over anything else? But as simplest answer is you should run these to protect that market share so your competitors don’t win that placement.

Shivali:

Thank you for answering that. We also have, if you rank well with the help of PPC, what strategy can we use to reduce PPC costs if you’re appearing twice organically and for PPC on the same page?

Destaney:

Great question. So simply the CEO of Simply Modern, which I believe is the largest drinkware company on Amazon, did a really great case study on this where they basically cut their advertising by like 70% just to see what would happen and his findings were organic ranking did decrease. So that’s something that’s just kind of like, be careful of that, but you can watch it really closely and if your organic rank starts decreASINg then you can kind of re increase your bids for those terms. So that’s what we typically do. So there’s different softwares. Pacvue does this where the moment you’re in the top four organically you can lower your bids and budgets for those keywords so that way you’re not cannibalizing your sales. And then if your organic rank starts to drop, you can return on and increase your bids and budgets for those keywords. That way you’re again showing up higher volume, which will increase your organic rank again. So it’s kind of a really healthy push pull between your ad spin and your organic rank. On the keyword level,

Shivali:

We have this question, what will be your launching strategy for a new product in the bedding category?

Destaney:

Yeah, so Beddings another interesting category where it comes to how you vary your listings. This is one where we’re typically gonna focus on like from a search volume perspective. Most people in the bedding category actually search by color and then size. So this is an area where we’re gonna segment by our, you know, dominant variations in that area. And then for bedding, unless you have a lot of capital, it’s an, it’s an expensive category we manage in this category and top of search can be very, very expensive. So if you don’t have an established product, you’re probably gonna need to go more long tail. You’re gonna need to focus on your competitive advantage and slowly gain volume before going after your top of search. Now if you have a competitive advantage, like maybe you have a licensee, maybe you’re selling like Mickey Mouse bedding, that’s gonna give you an advantage and you’re gonna be able to go after that niche target market with your long tail keywords.

Shivali:

We have, we’re getting so many impressions and clicks but not at really any sales. So what could be the probable reason for that?

Destaney:

Let’s pretend we’re a customer of Amazon. What are the reasons you click on a nASIN but do not buy like as a general shopper on Amazon, why would you click on a listing but not buy a product? Number one is typically price. They can find a cheaper product elsewhere. Number two is the listing doesn’t look real. You know, there’s typically something going on in the listing, maybe it’s a poor listing or you have misspellings or it’s not related, like those are gonna turn a customer away. Maybe you don’t have enough reviews. That’s another reason if you’re getting impressions and clicks, your PPC is doing its job, it’s driving traffic, but your listing is not doing its job because people are landing on it and not purchasing. So if you’re in this situation, I almost always look at my listing. Now you could could be targeting bad targets, you know, maybe again, I’m selling a red marker and maybe I’m targeting blue pencils. No one’s gonna convert for that because they’re looking for blue pencils, they’re seeing a red marker, they’re gonna click, see I don’t have that and click out. So those are the two things I would look at first.

Shivali:

All right. Let’s say there’s a brand new listing in terms of exposure, what would you suggest for that listing to get the maximum amount of exposure?

Destaney:

So sponsored product, manual campaigns, broad phrase and exact. I would segment out in this situation I would focus on sponsored brand ads because it’s the top placement on the page. It’s the first ad anyone sees. I’d focus on the sponsor brand’s video because they’re gonna tell a better story about our product. And then I would run and sponsor just by product targeting on all of my top competitors that I have a slight advantage over.

Shivali:

Well I believe that’s us getting to the end of this session. Now. I did see one more question here. Let’s make sure, now I see Naim said amazing session. I had so many questions to ask. We love to hear that. Unfortunately, I’m at work now, so is there a way to send in questions afterwards? Well, as Destaney mentioned earlier, she is in our Facebook groups, so make sure that you go to those groups and you leave your questions so that way we can get them answered. Destiny, thank you so much for being here and taking the time to really answer everyone’s questions. I’ve also learned quite a bit with this session, so appreciate you and I’m sure I’ll see you soon.

Destaney:

Amazing, thank you so much.

Shivali:

Thank you.

Bradley Sutton:

All right guys, hope you enjoy that episode. Thank you so much Shivali and Destaney for bringing that to us. Remember, every single month we have a different expert. I want you guys right now, even though it’s you know, the middle or end of February almost start getting your questions ready for next month’s tacos. Tuesday in March, we’ll have another expert who is gonna answer any kind of questions you have, sponsor display, DSP, sponsored products, you know, maybe you’re new to Walmart advertising. Start writing those questions down and then give it to us live or you can actually tag me in the Facebook group and I’ll go ahead and start, you know, tallying them so that I can ask our expert next month those questions. Hope you enjoyed this episode and we’ll see you in the next one. Bye-Bye now.


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