Retail Media, Part 3: Getting Ahead With Advertising Automation

If you’re reading this, you already know how important retail media has become. Advertising on e-commerce sites offers a rare opportunity to reach consumers at the moments they’re ready to buy, and is fast becoming the preferred way to get products in front of purchase-ready shoppers.

However, there is a catch.

With so many brands and retailers accelerating their own e-commerce strategies, the retail media market is getting more crowded every day. Ad spending on e-commerce channels jumped 38.8% in 2020, with the competition becoming especially fierce on key marketplaces like Amazon, Walmart and eBay.

So, how do you get your products to stand out in the midst of such a highly competitive environment?

That’s where automatic ad management comes in.

Why automatic ad management?

All brands and retailers face the same digital marketing challenge: When you’re working with hundreds or thousands of products, creating effective campaigns can be overwhelming. You need to segment products and add them to different ad groups. And as new items become available, you’ll need to figure out how to add them to the mix, too.

It all makes for a tedious, time-consuming process. But with 1.6 million active sellers on Amazon and a 40% increase in Walmart advertisers, slowing down is not an option.

That’s bad news if you handle campaigns and ad groups manually. With automatic ad management, however, you can let e-commerce technology do the work for you.

In our last retail media post, we examined the benefits of managing various e-commerce activities in one central location. However, there’s more to the equation than streamlined management. With a robust e-commerce platform, you can automate mission-critical advertising campaigns, too. It’s how many of the most successful online brands and retailers are cutting back on time-consuming manual tasks — and driving more revenue.

To understand how this type of advertising automation works, let’s take a look at a few examples in ChannelAdvisor. 

How does automatic ad management work?

When a seller uses Automatic Ad Management in the ChannelAdvisor platform, the biggest task is deciding which filters to use. Once you’ve set your filter criteria, the platform uses those parameters to automatically manage ads included in an ad group: When a product meets the defined criteria, it’s automatically unpaused or added to the group. When a product no longer meets the set criteria, it’s automatically paused.

So if you sell shoes, for example, you might use filters to select shoes for a particular brand and price range: 

In the example above, any Nike shoes priced between $50 and $80 would be created as ads. 

The filter criteria would then be re-evaluated every four hours to add new products or stop existing ads. So if those same shoes later drop to $42, the corresponding advertisements will be paused.

The same method could be used with any number of filter combinations. You could use “seller cost” and “quantity sold” filters to segment ad groups based on top sellers and clearance items, or hone in on highly specific product attributes such as sizes or specific brands.

It can be an ideal way to reduce wasted spend, improve ROI and eliminate the need for hundreds of valuable man-hours.

How else can you leverage advertising automation?

Automatic ad management is a highly popular method for e-commerce advertising — but it’s not the only way to overcome overwhelm. 

These days, keyword harvesting, bidding and campaign scheduling can all be automated in highly effective ways. In fact, many of our most successful third-party sellers have been using these capabilities for years.

And now, with ChannelAdvisor’s new support for Walmart Connect, you can take advantage of similar tools on another one of the world’s fastest-growing online marketplaces.

As a Walmart Advertising Partner, ChannelAdvisor gives sellers the option to perform bulk actions and apply performance-based ad rules in addition to automating bidding, campaign scheduling and keyword selection. These features come at a time when Walmart advertising is growing in influence, and have been designed specifically to help sellers increase visibility on an increasingly crowded marketplace.

If you’re not sure where to start, or if you’d like to learn best practices, be sure to watch the on-demand webinar: Take Control of Your Walmart Connect Campaigns. ChannelAdvisor specialists will take you through a step-by-step guide you can use to optimize your ad spend, increase visibility and drive more sales with Walmart Connect Sponsored Products: Watch the on-demand webinar now >>