Updated: Oct 4, 2020
Sponsored Brand Ads, or Headline Search Ads, as they were previously called, are Amazon’s way of encouraging shoppers to learn more about a brand by clicking anywhere on a banner across the most prominent and valuable real estate on the search results page.
Clicking on your logo in a headline ad can lead to a landing page of your choosing -- your Storefront or a curated Product List page.
A third option of “custom URL” is also available as a landing page destination, but for all practical purposes, it is just another type of product list page.
We were curious to test which of these 2 click-through destinations was better for advertisers and shoppers. Both landing pages offer shoppers drastically different experiences. As for advertisers, they can expect very different conversion rates.
Do you waffle about the choice?
When setting up your campaigns, do you ever waffle about which landing page to send traffic to? It’s such an important decision, and does require some thought.
Let’s look at the advantages and disadvantages of pointing customers to one of these destinations.
Amazon Store Front as a Destination for Headline Ads
Offers a rich visual experience and a chance to make shoppers fall in love with your brand.
Picking a store subpage as a destination allows you, as the advertiser, to control the landing page experience.
Suddenly switches “engaged shoppers” into “window shoppers”. The store page has that effect. Lots of choices = lots of distractions. Dropping shoppers on a page that has a lot of products to pick from has the effect of being a distraction and may endanger the postponement of the purchase decision to a different time, day or never.
Danger of losing the sale since the Ad does not lead to the familiar Product detail page.
Expectation mismatch. Shoppers see these headline ads in response to a keyword that they typed. There is an expectation that clicking anywhere on the ad will lead them to the product that solves their problem. But we know that based on where they clicked on the ad - Logo, Headline, Product Images - that the expectation may or may not be met.
Cost per clicks tend to be slightly higher than Sponsored Products and you need to do some upfront planning before you can launch them. Both of these reasons might scare some advertisers away.
Product Lists as a Destination for Headline Ads
Offers a list view of relevant products in the collection that you can bundle.
This list can include more than the 3 main products featured on the ad itself and you can also reorder and present the list as you like.
The experience is very similar to when they interact with native, organic listings or Sponsored Products Ads. All the important details, such a title, price, star rating and main image, that are essential to making a purchase, are right there. This allows shoppers to stay focussed on the purchase and not get distracted by unrelated products.
No major disadvantage that we could think of other than this page looks a little plain. Shopper behavior is slowly getting influenced by other brands sending them off to beautiful store pages. In a sense, there may be some behavioral expectation mismatch in the opposite direction.
What does the data say?
While Amazon’s representatives might advise you to use your Store Page landing page as your default destination, to enhance the ‘buyer experience’ and increase your ‘brand exposure,’ the fact is that for most 3P sellers, “brand loyalty” on Amazon is a myth. No amount of brand building matters, since shoppers mostly care about the lowest price and a decent looking listing.
Your choice of landing page needs to be based on data. Compare the performance of Store Pages versus Product List pages for sales and conversion rate. This is especially important because you are paying for these clicks.
To measure your performance, go to your Store’s Insights tab. Click on Sources and locate the Amazon Sponsored Brands source. Compare the sales here to the total sales that came from Sponsored Brand campaigns that sent traffic to the storefront.
In our experience managing PPC Ninja’s clients, on average, Store Pages drive less than 30% of Sponsored Brand ads sales. For this reason we almost always default to using the Product List page as our choice for landing page. However, your numbers could be totally different for your account and niche, based on any number of reasons. So do your data analysis and then decide.
Note, that in concluding that the Product List is a better destination for conversions, we do not mean to in any way, undermine the importance that your storefront has on your brand image on Amazon. You absolutely need to keep polishing and priming your storefront for organic traffic. Just don’t throw ad dollars at it if it does not make sense.
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