Fifty percent of consumers start their product discovery journey on retail sites like Walmart.com. When you’re ready to start advertising online, you’ll want to ensure that your campaigns are set up for success. Below is a checklist of things to consider as you launch advertising campaigns on Walmart.com.
Optimizing Product Detail Pages
Your product detail pages are the single most important asset in your Walmart advertising strategy. Before you even create your first campaign, you’ll want to set your advertising campaigns up for success by only advertising items that are “retail ready” - this means that your product detail pages are optimized to convert, meaning that they have high quality product images, meaningful content, contain ratings & reviews and are search optimized.
A key to ensuring you have optimized content on your product detail pages is to think like your customers. Make sure your product detail pages answer any questions a customer may have about your product. For example, if you’re selling cell phone cases, a key piece of information a customer might ask when considering that product is ‘what models does the cell phone case work for?’. Failing to include that key piece of information would likely be a barrier to purchase and result in a poor conversion rate for your campaigns.
Another important step in ensuring retail readiness is auditing images and video on the product detail pages, and making sure that they are engaging and up to date. The product detail page for your product is your digital storefront, and the images and videos on these pages are the single best way to quickly tell your brand story and demonstrate the value of your product. In order to be ‘retail ready’, we recommend that you include multiple images (both shots of the items and lifestyle images) and at least one video, preferably under 60 seconds long, that describes how the product works and why the customer needs it.
A final step in ensuring retail readiness is checking to make sure that your items are in stock and replenishable, in case Walmart needs to place additional orders – especially to account for any potential spike in demand as a result of your new advertising campaigns. Make sure that your items are set up for replenishment and that you can support a potential increase in orders – it doesn’t make sense to spend money driving traffic to an item if it’s at risk of running out of stock or if you can’t fulfill customer demand.
Automatic vs Manual Sponsored Product Campaigns
In Walmart Advertising, you can either create Manual or Automatic Sponsored Product campaigns. Manual and Automatic campaigns can appear in different ad placements. Automatic campaigns target relevant search terms dictated by Walmart and can appear in ad placements on search results pages, browse pages, and product detail pages. These campaigns do not require a list of keywords, but rather leverage Walmart’s customer browse and purchasing data to automatically match customer search terms with relevant Sponsored Product campaigns. Manual campaigns allow you to bid on specific keywords and only appear on the search results page.
One important note regarding Manual campaigns: in order for a product to be eligible for that placement, it must appear within the top 128 organic search results for the targeted query. This means that products outside of the top 128 in organic search results cannot run Manual campaigns against that keyword. If a product is in the top 128 organically then you should run both Manual and Automatic campaigns to maximize visibility. If a product is outside the top 128 organically, then you can run Automatic campaigns to drive product visibility on product page and browse page ad placements. Use Automatic campaigns to drive sales and increase organic rankings within the top 128 so that you can hopefully run keyword-targeted Manual campaigns in the future.
Perform keyword research on the products for which you’re running a Manual Sponsored Product campaign: a good place to start is Walmart’s Keyword Analytics tool. Input your items into the tool to get a list of relevant search queries to use in your Manual campaigns. One thing to keep an eye on when looking at the data provided is to look for suggested keywords that have high traffic keyword frequency, but low item keyword frequency. This is an indication that your particular product doesn’t have high visibility for a high search volume term and that you may need to bid higher on that term to increase visibility.
Advertisers can use this tool post-campaign launch as well to find new keywords. The keyword suggestions are updated on a weekly basis and can be used to identify seasonal or trending keywords for your items.
Setting Up and Launching Campaigns
Establish a logical campaign structure when setting up your campaigns. You may want to set up your campaign and ad groups by related keywords (branded keyword, competitor keyword, category keyword, etc.), brands, product categories, or a combination of multiple factors. Additionally, we highly recommend establishing a uniform and consistent campaign naming taxonomy. Having a specific campaign naming taxonomy will help immensely when it comes to analyzing and reporting on campaign performance.
A campaign naming taxonomy may look something like this:
[Brand Name]-[Product Category]-[Related Keyword]-[Campaign Type]
Ex. Nike-Shoes-Brand Keywords-Manual Campaign
Once your items have been logically grouped and your naming taxonomy has been established, you can start building your campaigns.
Post Launch Optimizations
After the campaigns have been launched and have gathered enough data (typically after 2-weeks) advertisers should begin making data-driven optimization decisions. Here are some of the optimizations you should begin to look at:
- Look at performance by device type (desktop, mobile app or mobile web) and use bid modifiers to increase bids on devices with better performance.
- Look at performance by placement (Product Page Buy Box or Search In-Grid) and use bid modifiers to increase bids on placements with better performance.
- Use Pacvue’s Keyword Performance Report to track performance of targeted keywords from manual campaigns. Identify which Broad match keywords are driving sales and create an Exact match keyword with a higher bid, to increase your chances of winning placement for that search term.
- Use Walmart’s Keyword Analytics Tool to identify new keywords on a weekly basis. The tool is updated on a weekly basis and can be used to identify seasonal and trending keywords for your products. Constantly expand your targeted keywords to increase your reach.
- Use bidding tools such as Pacvue’s Bid Landscape tool to quickly identify which keywords and campaigns have been driving up ACoS.
There is plenty of opportunity to be had by advertising on Walmart. By following these steps, advertisers can lay the groundwork for a successful Walmart advertising campaign.