Bahlsen uses sponsored ads to drive sales for food brands
The Bahlsen Family is an international sweet biscuit manufacturer that produces a variety of products, including brands like LEIBNIZ, BAHLSEN, and PiCK UP!. It was searching for opportunities to increase sales on Amazon.de for its products.
David Winkelmann, Key Account Manager at Bahlsen, explains, “Bahlsen uses sponsored ads mainly for two reasons: A) to help drive search traffic for relevant search terms to our product detail pages in order to generate profitable sales, and B) to create awareness among Amazon shoppers for our newly launched products.”
In 2018, Bahlsen partnered with Finc3 Commerce to help achieve these two goals. One of the insights from David was, “If you do not have the know-how or resources to leverage Amazon Advertising yourself, do not hesitate and get support from an external partner like Finc3 Commerce. The uplift in performance will offset the costs.”
Finc3 Commerce worked to create a strategy that focused on three key areas: Amazon retail readiness, campaign structure, and frequent optimization.
If you do not have the know-how or resources to leverage Amazon Advertising yourself, do not hesitate and get support from an external partner like Finc3 Commerce. The uplift in performance will offset the costs.– David Winkelmann, Key Account Manager at Bahlsen
Amazon retail readiness
Finc3 Commerce recognizes the importance of having your ASINs retail ready, not only to help drive organic sales but also to help drive sales via Amazon Advertising. They focus on two areas in particular: content optimization and stock management.
For content, Finc3 Commerce made sure that Bahlsen’s products all had updated product titles, descriptions, and images. They also made sure to understand the stock levels of certain products since they know that if Bahlsen’s products run out of stock, the ad campaigns will turn off until the stock is replenished. Finc3 has access to the client’s Vendor Central account and has a regular sync with Bahlsen in order to understand any changes to the products that could impact retail readiness.
Finc3 Commerce recommends using all three sponsored ads products (Sponsored Products, Sponsored Brands, and Product Display Ads*) to help maximize visibility with the opportunity to display in multiple placements across Amazon.de.
However, Finc3 knows that in order to use all three products effectively, you must create a clearly defined campaign structure in order to stay organized, easily report on results, and make quick optimizations. The campaign structure they created separates the different brands and type of targeting (branded, category) for each ad type. For example, they created a Sponsored Brands campaign for the PiCK UP! product line that targets branded keywords.
With this structure, Finc3 Commerce can set goals by product/goal type along with quickly find campaigns so they can optimize efficiently and download reports more seamlessly.
In order to optimize the campaigns, Finc3 Commerce focuses on two areas for optimization: bids and keywords. Bahlsen’s goal is to drive sales and visibility, so they know that finding the optimal bid for a keyword is crucial. Setting a higher bid (usually greater than €1, as suggested by Finc3 Commerce) helps increase the likelihood your ads can display in premium placements and generate sales. The agency focuses on optimizing keyword bids that are above or below the ACOS (advertising cost of sales) target they have set for each campaign. Finc3 Commerce sets these ACOS goals based on the brand/product set, since each product has different levels of profitability. If the ACOS is too high for a specific keyword in a campaign, then they will lower the bid manually to try and improve the ACOS. Bid management is done in a very efficient and scalable way, as Finc3 leverages machine learning technology which they developed together with a strategic tech partner.
Finc3 Commerce encourages every advertiser to understand its profit margins, as it allows them to more easily set optimization goals for each campaign to help achieve profitable sales. If the goal is awareness for a new product, Finc3 Commerce focuses on optimizing keyword bids based on the impression volume and CTR (click-through rate) of that keyword. If the impressions or CTR are low, they will increase the bid in order to help improve impressions and CTR.
In addition to optimizing bids, Finc3 Commerce knows that in order to generate a successful campaign for Bahlsen they needed to target relevant keywords so they could reach shoppers interested in Bahlsen’s products. In order to generate keywords, Finc3 creates automatic targeting Sponsored Products campaigns that they feed into the manual targeting Sponsored Products campaigns. For Sponsored Brands campaigns, they use the keyword recommendations and add them to the respective campaigns.
With Finc3 Commerce’s assistance, Bahlsen has had success with Amazon Advertising in 2018. They grew the ad-attributed sales by 242% with under a 10% ACOS. Finc3 Commerce was able to demonstrate with Bahlsen that a holistic understanding of Amazon e-commerce is just as important as understanding how to set up sponsored ads. Bahlsen plans to continue to advertise this year due to the positive results they have seen, and as David Winkelmann said, “We recommend Amazon Advertising to every advertiser that wants to grow its sales on Amazon.”
*Product Display Ads audience and product targeting features are now accessed within Sponsored Display.