Walmart on Friday kicked off the launch of its Walmart Advertising Partners program to expand advertisers’ direct access to Sponsored Products campaigns. The biddable auction-based marketplace now gives marketers greater transparency and control with their campaigns through audience shopper and search data.
Walmart invested in building out an advertising offering through Walmart Media Group in an effort to compete with marketplaces such as Amazon. In 2019, the company acquired Polymorph to strengthen its supply-side ad technology.
The platform serves full search and native ad campaigns and reports to brands.
Marketing experts believe that 2020 will bring on an expansion of marketplaces supported by advertising technology.
While large sites like Amazon, Alibaba, eBay, Etsy, and Walmart will continue to dominate the market in 2020, Harry Thakkar, an e-commerce and retail expert and Partner at digital commerce firm Avatria, says boutique marketplaces will begin to pop up across a variety of sectors within ecommerce.
To support this expansion of ad tech, Walmart has also hired several executives and those with engineering level experience to support brands including Kellogg and Hershey.
The media group also launched an API to make inventory available through the first four partners, Teikametrics, Flywheel Digital, Kenshoo and Pacvue, which were all test partners.
Kenshoo plans to release a study on Walmart shoppers next week. It surveyed more than 1,000 Internet shoppers and found that 42% of respondents had purchased, browsed or visited either Walmart’s website or app, making it the second-most popular online shopping destination.
Some 47% of respondents said they were either somewhat, very or extremely likely to purchase something from Walmart.com or the Walmart mobile app in the next six months.
From the data, Walmart estimates that 90% of Americans buy something from the company every year, with nearly 160 million visitors stopping by its physical locations and website weekly.
With this launch, Walmart intends to grow its search offerings to support advanced search marketers.