Advertising in the E-Commerce Health Industry Amidst Coronavirus

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Today’s unique set of circumstances have wellness experts and newbies alike not only thinking closely about their health, but also about how they can take their wellbeing into their own hands.

Stocking up on health items such as vitamins, supplements, probiotics, homeopathic remedies, etc. is no longer as simple as a trip to the pharmacy or local health food store. Today, consumers who are looking to add those products to their medicine cabinets are doing so online.

For e-commerce health brands, this increase in demand means adjusting strategies to meet interested audiences online.

To help pinpoint areas where marketers can make these of-the-moment tweaks, we took a look into Taboola’s own network to highlight creative best practices, targeting strategies, and more.

Let’s get into it.

Health and Fitness Benchmark Report

E-Commerce health is seeing increased interest

The connection between a global pandemic and an increased interest in e-commerce health is obvious, but it goes a little deeper than that.

A look into Taboola’s network since the end of March shows that certain keywords in particular pertaining to health have spiked in readership.

‘Probiotic’, ‘Vitamin D’, ‘Fasting’, and ‘Dumbbell’ are just a few of the health-related keywords that we’ve seen really pique consumers’ interest.

As consumers spend more time on publisher sites, they may be scanning for research on a supplement or probiotic they’ve been thinking of trying, or trying to figure out which type of protein is the best fit for their morning smoothies. Attention is being placed on e-commerce health, and advertisers in this category should position themselves to be found.

An increase in ad spend in the health vertical indicates that key players in the field are noticing this trend and following along with it. Join in, too, to ensure you’re effectively reaching consumers

Of course, that ad spend doesn’t come without the consumer demand to meet it. Since January, demand (defined here as click-through rate) for health content has been increasing, but especially so since mid-March.

With a rise in spend and a rise in consumer demand, reaching consumers all comes down to finding the right way to advertise.

Right now, as everybody operates out of their homes and remains focused on just doing the best they can, time and attention are truly valuable resources. Effectively reach your audience by meeting them on the trusted news sites that they’re spending time on, and do so in a way that doesn’t disrupt the experience they came for. Complement their online experience by advertising on publisher sites.

Creative strategy: image and headline best practices

Getting started with an e-commerce health campaign on Taboola doesn’t mean starting from scratch. In fact, it’s  simple to adapt creative strategies you’ve already seen success with.

Ads on publisher sites capture readers’ attention with an image and a headline that link out to a landing destination—long-form content tends to perform well here. Video is also a high performer for awareness goals, but today we’ll focus primarily on sponsored content.

Adapting the ads you’re seeing success with on search and social is simple. If you’re new to advertising on publisher sites, take a search ad you worked on, add an image that follows Taboola’s best practices (more on that below), and transform it into a timely native ad.

For images, focus on food and opt for colorless

Our Taboola Trends site enables you to see which types of images are driving the highest click-through rates for each vertical.

In the case of health, a few key factors that emerged were the exclusion of animals, the inclusion of food, not having a person as the subject, and opting for black & white.

Naturally, not all of these elements are possible for every campaign, but taking as many into consideration as possible can help drive clicks. 

Use keywords such as ‘happen’ and ‘naturally’

Checking out which keywords are driving clicks, as well as the ones that currently have high competition in the space, can help you write more effective headlines for your ads.

There’s also an opportunity to use keywords that drive high CTRs, but don’t yet have a ton of ad spend behind them. Get in early on keywords such as ‘refill’ or ‘beginners’. 

Images + headlines = ads

Combining the above image trends and keyword trends can help guide you on the right track to creating ads that garner clicks.

We put together a few example ads at various stages of the funnel that incorporate these trends to help get the creative juices flowing.

Your audience is at home—here’s how to target accordingly

For both your loyal audience and the audience who’s yet to find you, health is top of mind. Not only is health top of mind, but health without having to leave the house is especially top of mind.

As your audience adapts to new schedules and routines, and they’re on the lookout for health products and services to add to their regimen, it’s important that you meet them where they are. We’re highlighting the key times of day, days of week, devices, and content types that e-commerce health consumers are responding to right now so you can follow suit.

Launch ads at 6pm, 7pm and 10pm local time

Although ad spend is highest between 8am-10am, there is demand that’s not being met in the evening hours—6pm, 7pm, and 10pm specifically—that indicates an area of opportunity.

Try reaching consumers with e-commerce health content when they’re perusing content right around dinnertime or again before bed.

Reach audiences on Monday and Tuesday

Ad spend sees a spike on the weekends, but there’s unmet demand happening on Monday and Tuesday.

Try reaching consumers at the beginning of the week to see higher click-through rates.

Try targeting tablet devices

There’s a large supply of mobile and desktop targeting, an increase in demand for content consumption on tablet makes that device a good one to try targeting now.

We’re seeing success with photo gallery landing pages

In the e-commerce health industry, there is a large supply of text-based content, but a demand for photo-based content isn’t currently being met.

Test out photo gallery landing pages to see higher engagement.

Let audience segments help you get granular

Taboola’s data marketplace includes data from leading providers as well as data of our own. Try testing some of these segments in your next campaign:

  • Interest > Health > Natural Products
  • Interest > Health and Fitness > Exercise
  • Interest > Health > Wellness

Reach e-commerce health consumers with data to connect with them more successfully and with higher CTRs.

Better bidding

Get more out of your bidding by making a few key strategy adjustments. The best bidding strategies start wide with the highest bid you’re comfortable with, and then optimize from there.

A few of the general bidding best practices we recommend are:

  • Considering modifying bids on individual sites before blocking publishers when CPAs are high
  • Increasing bids by 25%-50% for top-performing sites to increase their competitiveness
  • Considering always-on campaigns if budget and offer parameters allow
  • …and, of course, using Smart Bid, which will get into next

Smart Bid is one of our smartest advertiser features, taking the guesswork out of bidding and maximizing campaign performance by automatically adjusting the baseline bid of every impression based on the likelihood to drive conversions or page views.

Smart Bid can help you derive more value out of Taboola, especially in a time where you may be giving more thought to value and budget than ever before.

Draw inspiration from these examples

Across Taboola’s network, e-commerce health advertisers are putting these best practices into, well, practice. These are just a few of the popular ads we’ve seen in this vertical recently:

Reach your audience the right way

We’ve gone over creative strategies, taken a look at targeting tactics, and highlighted bidding approaches that are working across the e-commerce health industry. Now, it’s time to apply these learnings to your own campaigns.

A world at home means that people are looking to buy—and do—everything online. Especially in these circumstances, the demand for health products and services online is even more in demand. This gives e-commerce health marketers a chance to go and meet that demand.

Remember to be adaptable, be creative, and above all else, be human. And, remember that Taboola can help keep you in touch with an audience that’s likely to be interested in connecting with you.

The most seasoned wellness pros, and people who’ve never so much as bought a single vitamin are all looking to take their health into their own hands—let’s reach them together.

Create Your Content Campaign Today!