AdRoll Blog

The Best Advertising Platforms for Ecommerce in 2021

With the highly competitive nature of today’s ecommerce market, there’s often simply too much for one marketer to handle: multiple ad channels, social media accounts, emails, tracking, analysis, testing, and much more. Success in the world of ecommerce marketing requires the ability to focus on multiple campaigns at once and the use of data to continuously refine creative choices and overall strategy. That’s why so many ecommerce marketers turn to digital advertising platforms that can bring all those tasks and responsibilities into one place, making it easier to assess campaign progress and effectiveness.

With the abundance of advertising platforms out there, it’s easy to be overwhelmed by the options. Here are some of the best advertising platforms reviewed for 2021.

The Best Advertising Platforms for Ecommerce in 2021

Google Marketing Platform

It’s impossible not to include Google on this list simply because of their ubiquity: they’ve been in the digital ad game for a long time, and their tools have always been well-respected by marketers and analysts. Google Marketing Platform, formerly called DoubleClick, combines campaign-building tools with the robust data interface offered by Google Analytics 360 Suite.

One of the most attractive aspects of the Google platform is the saturation of their display network — one of the largest in the world. If your goal is to get your brand’s name out in front of as many shoppers as possible, Google’s platform might make sense for you. Its multifaceted dashboard lets you manage everything from analytics, optimization, and audience surveys to search and display ads, tagging, and building new campaigns. 

However, the Google Marketing Platform might have some drawbacks, especially for larger businesses. A platform with greater scalability and enhanced analytical tools could better serve enterprises with large, complex campaigns and millions of customers.

Pros:

  • Affordable for small businesses with limited resources
  • A vast display network provides access to 3 billion searches per day
  • Excellent for new customer acquisition and boosting brand awareness
  • Easy to integrate into other marketing software

Cons:

  • Pricing scales up quickly, can run up to $150,000 per year or more for large enterprises
  • Customer service is limited
  • It can be confusing for marketers without experience managing complex software

Taboola

Native advertising remains a standard tool for ecommerce businesses, and Taboola is one of the most popular advertising platforms for this type of marketing. For newcomers, native advertising is when a brand places ads in context with other related content. Usually, these are highly creative ads, often taking the form of advertorials or other informational content that blends in with the website where they’re being published. The key: they look less like ads than traditional advertisements.

Taboola’s native advertising tools make it relatively simple to produce, publish, and track native advertising campaigns across different marketing channels. Its broad reach means that brands can hope to have their ads placed in various contexts, assuring visibility and helping generate brand awareness. Generally, users have enjoyed its ability to attract new customers and generate traffic at the start of the conversion funnel, where users first enter the brand experience. 

Pros:

  • Responsive customer service agents
  • An intuitive user interface makes it easy to build and launch campaigns
  • Easy to create campaign reports and review broad performance metrics

Cons:

  • The content approval process can be slow; Taboola must approve advertorial content before it can be published, and their criteria can be strict
  • Unable to drill down to the level of individual native ads for data

Media.net

Brands hoping to get outside the Google ecosystem might consider Media.net, which provides exclusive access to the Yahoo/Bing search and display networks. As a contextual advertiser with a comprehensive portfolio of ad hosts, including highly respected websites and publications, Media.net is a great way to access high-value traffic — if your brand can create great content.

Mobile, display, video, native, and search ads are all within Media.net’s toolkit, and its relationships with top-tier publishers make it attractive for brands that invest in top-tier content creation. However, this also means that Media.net’s standards are high, and brands can have their ads denied for various reasons. 

Pros:

  • Supports full range of ad types
  • Access to Yahoo! and Bing networks
  • Large marketplace with comprehensive pricing to help brands connect with publishers that will move the needle with their customers

Cons:

  • Competitive standards mean that a brand might have its ads frozen if they don’t generate high-quality content from Tier 1 countries

AdRoll

Ideal for ecommerce brands of all sizes, AdRoll provides a full suite of campaign creation tools and multichannel analytics, with accurate attribution modeling and a huge list of integrations. AdRoll’s automation capabilities make it easy to create campaigns and monitor them without getting involved in the details of retargeting. It’s also an affordable option for smaller brands, with a feature-rich free tier and a paid tier priced at just $19/month.

AdRoll is also popular for the high degree of personalization it gives brands. In a world where personalization is the most critical factor in the level of impact that an ad has on consumers, there’s nothing more vital than crafting campaigns that speak directly to customers’ needs and interests. You can use these customization tools in tandem with AdRoll’s budgeting functionality to ensure you’re maximizing the ROI of your campaigns.

Pros:

  • Personalization tools are first-class
  • Robust analytics and reporting make tracking campaigns easy
  • A wide array of templates provide great-looking ads without investing a ton of time in the creation
  • Integrates seamlessly with all major ecommerce selling platforms and other marketing tools
  • Affordable pricing keeps brands growing without draining budgets

The Right One Is Out There

There’s an advertising platform out there for virtually every type of brand and business. When deciding on the right option for your brand, make sure to evaluate their primary strengths and compare them with your marketing goals. Finding a partner whose pricing, features, and support match your needs will make all the difference for your brand in the long run.

Wilson Lau

Wilson Lau

Wilson is the Sr. SEO Marketing Manager at AdRoll.