With auction-based media buying, bidding to value and allocating budgets properly is of absolute importance to the success of your programs. Skai’s automated bidding & budgeting tools have been used by marketers for over a decade for proven performance gains.
While many walled garden publishers have native platforms for marketers to run self-service campaigns, not all have automated bidding or budgeting tools to help take some guesswork out of these tasks.
One example of this is Walmart Connect, a top retail media channel. While it offers advanced functionality, it doesn’t provide the bid or budget tools required to maximize investments. This is where a third-party platform such as Skai’s automated bidding & budgeting can fill in the gaps.
In auction-based media, bidding is critical, and it’s not that easy.
- If you bid too low, you won’t win the high-value Walmart Connect auctions you want and may have trouble spending your budget
- If you bid too high, you could overpay, which may waste your budget and not get the impressions you need to drive success
Remember, return-on-investment (ROI) is a ratio of how much you make divided by how much you spend. Hitting your ROI or ROAS goals is often more about keeping your costs in line rather than solely focusing on selling more products.
Sometimes, marketers focus too much on getting the cheapest cost-per-clicks (CPC) with a volume strategy. They keep their bids super low with the idea that the more traffic they can send to their product detail pages (PDP), the more likely they will get more sales.
But, bidding correctly is about efficiency, not about the lowest price.
Sometimes, you need to pay a premium on your Walmart Connect ads—much more than you would typically think—to beat the competition. And you have to consider lifetime value (LTV) because maybe you’re “over-bidding” on ads for specific products. After all, each sale may drive future purchases in the form of repeat purchases, accessories to that product, potential ongoing subscriptions, or even brand equity for other products down the line.
While many marketers focus intently on getting their bids precisely right, budgeting optimally across campaigns can be lost in the shuffle of a busy week. Budgets may have initially been evenly spread across multiple campaigns as a starting point but never revisited or optimized.
Allocating budgets correctly for your Walmart Connect programs is a bit of a three-dimensional puzzle. You have to have a good sense of what happened in the past, what’s going on right now, and the ability to forecast what may happen in the future. Seasonality must be considered along with broader macro trends that may impact a campaign’s priority/profit level of a campaign.
The problem arises when high-performing campaigns cap out daily, limiting total program return. Why let average or low-performing Walmart Connect campaigns spend your budget when your very best ones run out of funding by 1 pm?
Veteran marketers know that there’s a lot of untapped performance within most programs by properly adjusting budgets. Skai Budget Navigator helps search marketers forecast, optimize and monitor with ease. Using machine learning technology to manage budgets and adjust spending to achieve your business goals, it provides continuous feedback on expected results to stay ahead of trends and the competition.
Skai’s optimization algorithms work better with Walmart Connect’s second price auction
As we reported earlier this year, Walmart Connect moved from a first-price auction model to a second-price one. At the time, we here at Skai were excited about this change.
We have been ready for Walmart Connect’s second-price auction for a while, and our product teams have been working closely with Walmart to roll this out seamlessly for our clients,” says Skai’s Kevin Weiss. “We believe our machine-learning optimization algorithms will drive even better results with these important auction updates from Walmart.
Over Skai’s 16+ years of experience building best-in-class marketing tools, our performance optimization functionality has been almost exclusively focused on auction-based media using the second-price model. So, while we supported Walmart Connect’s previous methodology, Skai clients are seeing even more value now.
And, for savvy retail media marketers, second-price auctions inherently offer more opportunities to find even more untapped opportunities. With a first-price auction, you pay what you bid, so it’s relatively straightforward, but with second-price ones, there are bid ceilings to figure out. Skai’s automated bidding & budgeting algos can offer a significant competitive advantage on Walmart Connect.
“For paid media programs, a first-price auction is harder to optimize for anyone,” says Troy Evans, Expert Services Manager, eComm at Skai. “And, particularly with our algorithm and bid optimizer, it’s easier to optimize within a second price model efficiently. It has room to be more competitive with bids without risking significant loss to return efficiency.”
Skai’s optimization technology helps to maximize your Walmart Connect bids and budgets
Skai’s Retail Media solution empowers brands and agencies to plan, execute, and measure campaigns on 30+ retailers in one unified platform with best-in-class automation and optimization capabilities.
Get the most out of your Walmart Connect campaigns with Skai!
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