Walmart Advertising 101: Understanding Walmart Sponsored Ads

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Walmart is a well-known retail giant that attracts millions of customers every day. It has become increasingly apparent for sellers to employ marketing techniques to push their product listings to the eyes of potential customers.

For sellers looking to increase their visibility and sales on Walmart’s online marketplace, Walmart Sponsored Ads is a powerful advertising tool that can help.

If you have no idea what Walmart sponsored ads are, you have come to the right place.  In this guide, we will provide an in-depth overview of Walmart Sponsored Ads, including the different ad types available, how they work, and best practices for creating successful campaigns.

Why Sellers Should Consider Walmart Advertising

Walmart advertising sponsored ads provide a great opportunity for sellers to increase their visibility and sales on the Walmart Marketplace.

By utilizing these ads, sellers can target specific audiences and improve their chances of being seen by potential customers. In addition to boosting visibility, Walmart sponsored ads offer several other benefits that make them a valuable marketing tool for Walmart Marketplace sellers.

1. Increased Visibility

One of the biggest benefits of using Sponsored Ads is the increased visibility it provides for your products.

Sponsored Ads are displayed prominently on search results pages and category pages, giving your products greater exposure to potential customers. This increased visibility can lead to more clicks and ultimately more sales.

2. Better Targeting

One of the significant benefits of Walmart sponsored ads is the ability to target specific keywords, categories, and customer segments.

With these ads, you can choose the keywords and categories that are most relevant to your products, ensuring that your ads reach shoppers who are actively searching for those products.

Additionally, you can target your ads to specific customer segments, such as age, gender, location, or shopping behavior.

By targeting your ads to the right audience, you can increase the likelihood of conversion and maximize your advertising spend.

3. Improved Conversion Rates

When you use Walmart Sponsored Ads, your products are placed in front of customers who are already interested in similar products or actively searching for the keywords you’ve chosen.

This means that the likelihood of converting those potential customers into actual buyers increases. When your ads are visible and relevant to the customer’s search, it is easier to capture their attention and drive them to your product page.

This, in turn, increases your overall conversion rate, which is the number of customers who buy your product divided by the total number of people who visit your product page.

4. Cost-Effective

With Walmart sponsored ads, sellers only pay when a shopper clicks on their ad. 

This pay-per-click model ensures that sellers only pay for the actual traffic that their ad generates. As a result, Walmart sponsored ads can be an excellent investment for sellers who are looking to maximize their ROI.

5. Measurable Results

Walmart provides detailed metrics on ad performance, such as impressions, clicks, click-through rates, and conversion rates.

By monitoring these metrics, you can get insights into how your ads are performing, which products are driving the most clicks and conversions, and how much revenue your ads are generating.

This data can help you optimize your ad campaigns, tweak your targeting and bidding strategies, and adjust your ad spending to maximize your return on investment (ROI).

What is Walmart Connect?

Walmart connect - Walmart sponsored ads

Now that you know how beneficial it is to run sponsored ads on Walmart, the question remains “How do I get started?”. The first place to start is Walmart Connect.

Walmart Connect is Walmart’s advertising platform that provides a suite of advertising solutions to help brands and sellers promote their products to Walmart’s massive online and in-store customer base.

The platform was launched in 2020 and is designed to make advertising on Walmart’s marketplace and stores more accessible, efficient, and effective.

Walmart Connect offers various advertising formats that allow sellers and brands to reach shoppers across Walmart’s digital properties, including the Walmart web page, the Walmart app, and the in-store experience.

The platform leverages Walmart’s first-party data and advanced targeting capabilities to help advertisers reach their ideal customers with the right message at the right time.

Additionally, Walmart Connect provides self-service tools and resources that allow advertisers to manage their campaigns, budgets, and targeting settings with ease.

Advertisers can create, launch, and manage their campaigns from a single dashboard, making it easy to optimize and adjust their campaigns in real time.

Types of Walmart Sponsored Ads

As mentioned earlier, Walmart Connect provides sellers with the opportunity to utilize different Walmart advertising formats to reach their customers.

With Walmart Connect, you can run three types of Walmart sponsored ads campaigns; Sponsored brand ads, sponsored product ads, and sponsored display ads.

Sponsored Brands Ads

Walmart sponsored ads - Brands

Sponsored Brands are ads that appear at the top of the search results. These ads feature a brand logo, custom headline, and multiple products. They appear at the top of relevant search results and category pages.

Sponsored Brands ads are designed to increase brand visibility and drive sales by promoting multiple products at once.

To create a Sponsored Brands ad, you must choose a brand logo, create a custom headline, and select the products you want to promote. The ad will then appear at the top of relevant search results and category pages.

For the query “bluetooth speaker” as seen in the image above, we see that the brand “Altec Lansing” makes an appearance in the sponsored brand ads section of the page. It means this brand paid for this space and will be the first thing customers will see when they search “bluetooth speaker” on Walmart.

Sponsored Brands ads are a great choice for sellers who want to increase their brand visibility on Walmart Marketplace. They can help promote multiple products at once and drive more traffic to a seller’s store. These ads are especially useful for larger sellers with a wide range of products.

The budget for Sponsored Brands ads can vary depending on the seller’s advertising goals and the level of competition for the chosen keywords.

The cost is based on a cost-per-click (CPC) model, where the seller pays only when a shopper clicks on the ad. The CPC can range from $0.10 to $3.00 per click, depending on the keywords selected and the competition for those keywords.

Sellers should start with a budget of at least $50 per day to see meaningful results from Sponsored Brands ads. However, it’s important to continuously monitor the performance of the ads and adjust the budget as needed to ensure the best possible return on investment.

Sponsored Products Ads

Walmart sponsored ads - Products

Walmart sponsored product ads appear in the search results or on product detail pages. They are usually displayed just below the Sponsored Brands ad. These ads are pay-per-click (PPC) and appear in a designated sponsored products section.

Sponsored product ads are keyword-based, meaning they appear for specific search terms that a customer may be looking for. As a seller, you can select your own keywords or let Walmart Connect suggest them for you.

To use Walmart sponsored ads, you need to set up a Walmart Connect account and create an advertising campaign. Walmart’s sponsored ads allow you to target your ads based on specific keywords, categories, and customer segments.

You can also set a daily budget for your ads and only pay when a customer clicks on the ad.

Budget estimates for Walmart sponsored ads can vary widely depending on the specific campaign goals and the competition for the targeted keywords or categories.

Just like the sponsored brand ads, you should expect to spend about $50 per day to see results from your ads campaigns.

Walmart sponsored ads are recommended for sellers who want to increase their product visibility and sales on the Walmart Marketplace. These ads are particularly useful for sellers who are new to the marketplace and want to build their brand quickly.

Sponsored ads can also be useful for new products that do not yet have a high organic search ranking or for sellers who want to promote specific products or promotions and want to boost sales of specific products or product categories.

Sponsored Display Ads

Sponsored Display ads appear on the Walmart website and offsite, including social media and third-party websites. These ads are typically targeted toward customers who have already shown an interest in a particular product.

Sponsored Display Ads are different from Sponsored Products Ads and Sponsored Brands Ads because they are not keyword-targeted, but rather audience-targeted.

Sponsored Display Ads work by targeting specific audiences based on their past browsing and purchase history, interests, and behaviors. This allows sellers to reach shoppers who are more likely to be interested in their products, increasing the likelihood of a click and conversion.

Sellers who want to increase their visibility on Walmart’s marketplace and reach a wider audience should consider using Sponsored Display Ads.

These ads can be particularly effective for sellers who are launching a new product, looking to increase sales of a slow-moving product, or trying to build brand awareness.

The budget for Sponsored Display Ads varies based on a number of factors, including the targeting options selected, the bid amount, and the competition for ad space.

Walmart recommends starting with a minimum daily budget of $5 per campaign, although sellers may need to increase their budget to see significant results.

As with all forms of advertising, it’s important for sellers to track their ad spend and performance closely to ensure they are seeing a positive return on investment.

Bonus: Walmart Buy Box Ads

Walmart’s Buy Box Ads are not exactly a type of sponsored ad, but they are a form of advertising that Walmart sellers can take advantage of to boost their sales.

These ads allow sellers to promote their products in the “Buy Box” section of Walmart’s product detail page, which is the section that features the “Add to Cart” button.

The Buy Box is a highly coveted space on the Walmart Marketplace as it is where the majority of sales occur. When multiple sellers offer the same product, Walmart’s algorithm determines which seller is awarded the Buy Box based on factors such as price, shipping options, and seller performance.

To be eligible for Buy Box Ads, you must have an active Walmart Marketplace account, a good seller rating, and the ability to fulfill orders.

Additionally, your pricing must be competitive because Walmart wants their customers to get the best deal at all times. One way to competitively price your items automatically is with the use of a Walmart repricer. Check out our piece on Walmart repricer strategies you can consider to win the Walmart buy box.

Walmart’s Advanced Second-Price Auction Model

Walmart deployed its Advanced second-price auction model in mid-2022 to make it easier for sellers to get preferred keywords for their advertising campaigns.

Walmart’s advanced second-price auction model is a bidding system used in their sponsored products and sponsored brands advertising programs.

The auction model is designed to provide a fair and efficient bidding process for advertisers, while also ensuring that Walmart’s shoppers receive relevant and high-quality ad content.

In this auction model, the advertiser (you in this case) sets a bid for a specific keyword or product, indicating the maximum amount they are willing to pay per click on their ad.

The model uses machine learning algorithms to better understand user search queries and product attributes. This allows Walmart to match sponsored ads with relevant search queries more accurately, increasing the likelihood of a successful ad campaign

When a shopper searches for a relevant keyword or product, this algorithm considers all available ads and determines which ones are the most relevant to the shopper’s search query. The winning ad is then displayed prominently on the search results page or category page.

The advertiser only pays the amount necessary to beat the second-highest bid in the auction. This means that if an advertiser sets a bid of $1 per click, but the second-highest bid is only $0.50 per click, the advertiser will only pay $0.51 per click if their ad is clicked.

This advanced auction model allows advertisers to get the best possible return on their advertising investment, while also ensuring that Walmart’s shoppers receive high-quality and relevant ad content.

This model is a positive from Walmart and it goes to show that the marketplace wants its sellers to succeed in their advertising campaigns.



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