In the previous two decades, consumer practices and trends have changed the ways in which brands advertise their products and drive sales. Because of smartphones and other mobile devices, most of the consumers have the internet available at all times. This allows them to make thoughtful and informed purchases by having the ability to search for product details and reviews on web-based platforms. This consumer behavior has continued the exponential growth of Google and Amazon’s paid search marketing.
Google As The Pioneer of Paid Search Marketing
Paid search marketing has its roots in the early 1990s, as search engines turned into the primary means through which internet users explored the web. While many search engines were in competition with each other, Google quickly settled itself as the top search engine on the web by 2000 as indicated by Search Engine Land. The company launched Google Adwords, a self- service advertising solution to take advantage of its large audience. So as to use Google Adwords, businesses make an ad which informs audiences about what they offer. After making an ad, businesses choose a set of keywords related to their brand that potential customers may look for on Google.
Their ad would then appear above search results when people type those keywords into Google. Business only pays for their ads when people engage with them by clicking on the ad with the website link or when people call the business directly on Google.
Google Paid Search Results
Google Adwords has experienced a strong growth rate since its launch. According to Search Engine Land, Google earned $24.6B in search ad revenue in 2016. Many other search-based platforms have followed suit by developing their own methods of paid search advertising.
Amazon’s Growing Ad Revenue
To reach shoppers as they searched for products on the site, Amazon, the leading e-tailer in the U.S. launched self-service advertising solutions in 2012. Amazon’s shoppers have a high likelihood to buy from the site and this guarantees better sales conversion.
As indicated by Amazon press release in December 2017, more than 1 billion purchases were fulfilled by Amazon during the holiday season. It doesn’t stop there, coupled with frequent purchases, spend by customers has also gone up at the retail giant. As of September 30, 2017, CIRP estimates that in the US, the average yearly spending at Amazon.com for Amazon Prime members is approximately $1,300, and the average spending for Amazon Echo owners is approximately $1,700. All US Amazon customers spend approximately $1,000 yearly.
In 2012, Forrester found that 30 percent of consumers look first on Amazon for their desired products. However, as of 2017, Amazon was a close second to Google in the ranking of sites used to find and research products. Fifty-five percent of product searches in the U.S. comes from Amazon. This continues a more than three-year growth trend for Amazon, suggesting that their share of product searches will continue to grow.
Amazon Paid Search Results
How it Works
The majority of Amazon’s paid search marketing options follow an auction-based model in which sellers and vendors set a daily spending plan for their ads. The more that a seller or vendor is willing to pay for their advertisement, the higher the probability that their advertisements will be shown. Sellers and Vendors pay for their ads per-click, implying that they pay a set amount each time a customer taps or clicks on their advertisements. Thus, Amazon is rewarded for effective advertising. This model has worked well. Business Insider reports that Amazon paid search income was $2.8 billion out of 2017.
Keeping Up With Evolving Trends
While paid search advertising has filled in as a rewarding endeavor for both Google and Amazon, each company remains faced with the challenge to keep up with evolving marketing trends. In 2017, According to Search Engine Watch, Google discharged in excess of 40 updates and changes on its AdWords platform. That same year, Amazon extended its site to new marketplaces around the world, making a need to change their advertising strategies to reach audiences.
2018 promises to be a year of continued change for each company as they keep on extending their advertising options.
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