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Advertising for eCommerce: Where to Advertise & Tips for Success

Mar 11, 2021 | 5 minute read

Advertising for eCommerce: Where to Advertise & Tips for Success

Rachel Tyers

Rachel Tyers, VP of Strategic Partnerships

eCommerce has been running at a peak for the last year, with more people shopping online than ever before.

But as a DTC brand in order to benefit, you need to be seen. This means putting your brand and products in front of potential customers, wherever they are — through eCommerce advertising.

Simply put, this is the practice of putting paid content about your products in online media such as search engines and social media channels.

The aim is to get your brand discovered (or rediscovered) by potential customers, with the intention of:

  • Increasing brand awareness
  • Creating marketing leads
  • Acquiring customers

If “poor distribution — not product — is the number one cause of failure” for brands, it pays to learn the top eCommerce advertising tips and channels.

Where to Advertise Your eCommerce Site

Social Media

The average internet user spends 2 hours, 24 minutes on social media every day. This gives you a wide window of attention to introduce your products.

Social media is particularly effective for eCommerce advertising because of three key features:

  • Ad types: Facebook, Instagram and other social media channels offer various ad types including photos, videos, stories, collections, carousels, shopping tags and more. This gives you huge scope for creating the best eCommerce advertising campaigns for your audience.
  • Audience targeting: Facebook and Instagram have excellent audience targeting filters to help you get your products in front of relevant users who are more likely to resonate with your brand and desire your products.
  • Social proof: Social media advertisements target audiences on a platform where they can immediately seek social proof to research your brand and see your products in real life.

And with 61% of users accessing social media by phone, this form of advertising allows you to target the mobile-commerce market which counts for 45% of online shoppers.

Tip: Take time to understand your customer demographics (such as age) to know which social media platforms will work best for reaching your audience.

Search Engine

More than half of online shoppers start their purchasing journey on a search engine — making Google fundamental to your eCommerce paid advertising strategy.

In fact, some of the best eCommerce advertising campaigns use search engine ads because they encompass:

  • Buyer intent: Unlike social media ads which target people based on their activities and interests, search engine ads target people based on their specific search intent. These users are further along the purchasing journey, and quicker to convert.
  • Ad placement: Google, in particular, has a variety of ad types to enable you to target shoppers in different places to increase brand recognition. Google ad placements cover Google’s search results, third-party websites, YouTube and Google Shopping.
  • Keyword targeting: Google has super-intelligent search algorithms to ensure your ads reach the right people, substantially increasing the chances of conversion while removing irrelevant search queries.

Tip: When optimizing your Google Ads for specific keywords, use the negative keyword function to exclude unrelated searches (e.g. if you’re advertising stylish glasses, add “wine glasses” as a negative keyword).


Influencer marketing is said to have the best digital marketing ROI, generating an average return of $18 for every $1 spent. Why?

Nearly half of buyers rely on influencers for purchase decisions, making micro-, macro- and nano-influencers some of your best advertisers.

The reasons influencer advertising works so well are:

  • Social proof: Influencer advertising taps into the social proof phenomenon, where people are more likely to trust a third-party’s review of a product.
  • Confidence: Influencers give shoppers the confidence to convert, offering blogs, videos and broadcasts that delve into product details.
  • Lookalike audiences: People follow influencers because they share an interest, style or personality trait, giving you access to the right audience for your products.

Tip: Engagement matters more than followers. Look for influencers with high engagement levels (likes, comments, and shares), rather than those with thousands of followers but little engagement.

eCommerce Advertising Best Practice: Reviews

One of the most successful and cost-effective methods for turning your ad audience into converted customers is leveraging customer reviews. Why? Because shoppers who interact with UGC are 97% more likely to convert than those who don’t.

You can use the power of social proof to add credibility, independent detail and FOMO to your eCommerce ads.

Here are four simple ways you can incorporate customer reviews into your eCommerce advertising campaigns:

Final Thoughts

You’re not alone. Okendo helps merchants like you prepare your advertising campaigns by collecting and displaying customer reviews and UGC across your key marketing channels, including Google, Facebook, and Instagram.

Book a demo with Okendo

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