Digital forms of advertising – which approach works best? – eCommerce magazine

40 percent of advertising spending worldwide flows into digital channels and while net advertising spending is falling overall, the online share is constantly growing. When asked which Forms of advertising If e-commerce operators should invest specifically, we have to start with your initial situation. Here is a checklist before you go into detailed advertising planning.

Checklist for forms of advertising

  • What is your message or your goal? “Buy me”, price, branding, unique selling point or product launch
  • What is your customer’s need?
  • At what point in the customer journey do you want to reach the customer? Evaluation phase, decision phase or spontaneous purchase situation
  • What is the budget? Total budget, margin and term
  • How is the market situation? Seasonal occasion and competition

The advertising channels can be selected and put together on the basis of your initial situation and the effectiveness of the various forms of advertising. We use two examples to illustrate how different this can look.

Example 1: Quality brand retailer

Example number one is a quality brand manufacturer that produces lingerie. He mainly sells his products through the stationary fashion trade. He also maintains an online shop. So he acts as an omnichannel retailer. For the brand manufacturer, image cultivation comes first. Customers in department stores or when shopping online should primarily have the brand in their heads, consciously or unconsciously. The message consists of emotions, i.e. soft components and not pure facts: How do people feel in the laundry, what is the quality, the value, the sustainability?

Please note that emotions are best conveyed visually and that many advertising contacts are necessary on the way to the subconscious. This means that high-reach, visual forms of advertising are imposing, above all display advertising. Display is booked either according to target groups such as demographic characteristics or according to suitable environments.

Digital forms of advertising: Youtube and Facebook

In addition to the display, ads and videos on the YouTube or Facebook channels are also very good ways of conveying the message. The target group can be selected particularly well here. The second pillar for the brand manufacturer is classic search engine advertising, SEA, or Search Engine Advertising. Nowadays, online searches take place both on the go and when shopping online at home. Targeted search campaigns for all relevant keywords are therefore essential. Retargeting measures are also a matter of course.

→ In focus for brand manufacturers: display, SEA, retargeting and social media

Forms of advertising
Image: Ad Agents

Example 2: Online electronics retailer

Let’s look at example retailer number two, a pure online retailer in the electronics sector. Its product range extends from information technology to entertainment electronics to telecommunications. The products are completely comparable with those of other retailers, the price is decisive. Product-specific messages such as price, availability, functionality and technical specifications are important here. The target group usually searches in a targeted manner, is price-conscious and makes a quick decision.

The focus is clearly on performance-driven forms of advertising that aim for direct online sales. Google Shopping should be mentioned here, SEA and of course retargeting. The retailer has to keep a close eye on his measurement indicators because the margin is small and leaves little room for maneuver. Badly functioning campaigns quickly lead to losses. Campaigns are controlled according to the cost-revenue ratio (KUR) granularly at category or even product level, different campaign phases belong in separate campaigns.

Digital forms of advertising: Affiliate networks

Affiliate marketing is also an important pillar for the retailer. Commission payments only flow when the purchase is completed. The large affiliate networks make sense as well as individual direct partnerships; here you will find many price comparison sites on which the retailer with his price focus or. should be present with promotions, discounts or coupons.

→ In focus for price retailers: Google Shopping, Affiliate, SEA and Retargeting

But which digital form of advertising is the right one? Unfortunately, there is no general answer. The focal points are different depending on the initial situation. What has become clear, however, is that you need a clear strategy, solid campaign planning and continuous monitoring in order to achieve set goals. And it is not a single channel that leads to success, but a combination of several advertising channels is necessary in order to exploit the potential of online advertising.

Forms of advertising
Image: Ad Agents

Important tips for digital forms of advertising

Don’t be fooled into thinking that you really know your target audience until you have verified that assumption! With the help of analysis software such as Google Analytics, interests and characteristics of the target group can be narrowed down – with often astonishing results. Scattering losses are then reduced with modeled ranges or precisely fitting surroundings. The quality of its data feed is essential for price-oriented retailers. All important data, facts, features, prices, variants, delivery times and bullets must be complete and, above all, current. Intensive campaign monitoring is also crucial.

Advertising Forms Glossary:

  • SEA (Search Engine Advertising): Paid search ads in text format, keyword-based
  • SEO (Search Engine Optimization): Website optimization, a discipline for every website operator
  • Affiliate Marketing: Use of advertising space through programs or direct partnerships, billing mainly based on commission
  • Display advertising: Paid display of banner ads, billing mainly according to the thousand-contact price (CPM)
  • Google Shopping: Google search engine advertising in a separate image-text format, keyword-based, billing by click
  • Retail Media: Advertising within marketplaces only if the products are offered on the marketplace
  • Social Media Marketing:
    Paid advertising, mostly visual, on networks such as Facebook, Youtube, Insta, LinkedIn, Xing. Very precise target group selection possible
  • Retargeting: Re-addressing the visitors of a website on other websites

Also read: PWAs as single-page apps – an unbeatable combination

Ad agents
Wolfgang Schilling is Managing Director of ad agents GmbH.

About the author: Wolfgang Schilling is one of the founders and managing directors of ad agents GmbH, a full-service provider for digital marketing. (Image: ad agents GmbH)