Getting to know what your competitors are up to is always healthy, be it on SEO, PPC advertising, Push ads, native ads, or display advertising.
The open secret among the advertising community is that if a competitor is running a particular ad (ad copy, landing pages, targeting, etc.) for a more extended period of time, it indicates that the ad is making a profit.
In banner advertising, spying on competitors’ ads is very important. Here are several reasons why…
- Get to know which banner ad sizes and placements are converting better most.
- Find out eye-catching banner creatives that are running for the longest duration of time and times have seen.
- Which ad type is used most: image, HTML, or text ads
- Top publisher websites and their ads
What is Semrush Display Advertising tool?
Semrush is a digital marketing tool that provides many tools for search engine optimization, content marketing, social media marketing, market analytics, and advertising.
One of the tools of Semrush Advertising Toolkit is the Semrush Display Advertising tool.
Basically, Semrush’s Display Advertising tool is a banner ads spy tool that helps you uncover many secrets of your competitors and even compare your ad strategy with others.
Currently, it includes 310 million total ads in 3.5 million publishers (i.e., sites) by 5.2 million advertisers.
How to use Semrush’s Display Advertising tool
First of all, you need to have an active Semrush subscription to analyze banner ad strategies with Semrush. Semrush’s pricing starts from $119.95 per month, and you can open a free trial account over here.
Your Semrush trial account will be available for a period and will have unrestricted access to the specific Semrush plan you joined to, Pro or Guru.
Once logged in, go to Display Advertising Tool in your Advertising Research section.
Type the domain or a keyword. In our case, I enter Semrush.com as I want to find all the display ads run by Semrush.
Click on the ‘Explore now‘ button.
Overview – Get 360 view of advertiser’s Display ad strategy
At the top of the Overview page, you will be shown total ads, publishers, and last seen dates. This data shows you how actively a particular business or company is using display ads to drive sales.
In the audience targeting section, you can see the distribution of age, gender, and interests in charts. Next to them, you will see sample ads, publishers, top publisher categories, country targeting, ad types, and display ads by devices. These are all overview statistics.
Ads – Find all the ads
When clicked on the Ads tab, you will see all the ads run by the company and more details like:
- Times seen
- Days seen
- First seen
- Last seen
If you want to see successful banner ad creatives and campaigns, sort ad creatives by Days seen. If a banner ad was run for a longer period, it tells you the creative and offers combination worked perfectly for advertisers.
A single landing page can have multiple ads. Click on the ‘Landing Pages‘ tab and see all the high converting landing pages explicitly created for banner ads traffic.
Now here is the exciting part. Not most banner ad spy tools will tell you which publishers are running which ads and for how long time. But, the Semrush Display Ads tool provides this significant information.
The ability to find all the banner creatives of a brand running on a specific website, forum, or community is also beneficial.
Finding websites a banner is displayed
In the ‘Ads’ tab, click on the banner ad image, and you will see a screen like below.
Sort it by ‘Days Seen,‘ and you will see top publishers. According to the statistics provided by the Semrush Display ads tool, some websites have shown the same ad for over a year!
Here is a video tour of Semrush’s Display Advertising tool.
How to find affiliates using banner ads in Google Ads
In the Semrush Display Advertising tool, enter the destination URL for the affiliate offer page. For instance, I will use Clickfunnels as an example. Marketers promote Clickfunnels in many mediums. Banner ads are one of them.
According to research on how affiliates use banner ads to promote Clickfunnels trial, many use text ad type.
Analyze publisher (website)
Enter the website you want to analyze, display ad publishing details, and select the ‘Publisher‘ option.
Do not forget that you can use search modifiers to fine-tune your research. For example, use geo-targeting to observe local banner ads and device targeting to find ads only displayed on mobile, desktop, etc.,
Find high converting lead pages
Many marketers use banner ad traffic to build an email list. Like in PPC advertising, Native ads, and particularly in Solo Advertising, squeeze page or lead page conversion rate matters critically. One percentage increase in subscription rate will impact hugely.
Let’s assume you want to find all top optin pages created by Clickfunnels users. Enter Clickfunnels.com into the Semrush Display Advertising tool and head over to the Landing pages section.
Like said earlier, if an ad is run for a long period, it shows the ad, and the squeeze page converts very well for the advertiser. Click on the naked URL shown to preview the landing page on your browser.
If any page is not available, you can try using Web.Archive.org to fetch its cached versions.
If you are in the display advertising field, you already know how important it is to watching competitors and what they are doing to maintain a positive ROI from banner ad campaigns and get net positive results.
With the help of tools like Voluum and ClickMagick, you can track ROI and other stuff, but only if you know every corner of the niche will you be able to run successful banner ad campaigns consistently.
Among many display ads spy software and tools, Semrush’s Display Advertising tool is mostly used because of many reasons. Its extensive data and broad reach allow you to reverse engineer any brand’s Google Display ads campaigns.
So, which tools did you use before to find successful banner ad campaigns and their details?