Smart banners are a convenient format for ads in Yandex.Direct: it’s easy to set up, they are created automatically and attract users with dynamic content. But often, smart banners don’t display the way they should, or don’t produce good results.
In this article, we will analyze the mistakes that advertisers make most often. We will also advise you on how to fix them so that you do not have to set up your campaign again or create hundreds of ads manually.
Smart banner is an interactive ad format in Yandex.Direct with dynamic content and pay-per-click or conversion rates. To create ads, you need to upload a feed to your Direct – a file with a list of products and information about them. The system will analyze the feed and automatically create a smart banner for each product in the file.
We discussed what and how to set up in smart banners in the article. Let’s take a look at the typical mistakes that prevent these ads from working.
Error 1: download problem
You prepared a feed, tried to upload it, but the system responded with an error.
To find out why the feed didn’t load, click “Details”. Most often, such an error occurs if the feed was created manually: not all required tags are specified, incorrect category IDs, etc. Therefore, we recommend setting up automatic unloading of the feed from your site – with it, the probability of an error is lower, and information about products will be updated without your participation …
You can check if the feed is formatted correctly in Yandex Help – it describes the required and optional tags and their characteristics.
If you have problems with automatic feed uploading, we advise you to contact your webmaster or support to check the code and identify the error.
A boot error can also appear when the wrong type of business is selected: each of them has its own requirements. For example, you created a retail feed and selected cars when uploading. For information on which feeds are suitable for which businesses, see Yandex Help.
Mistake 2: no Metrica counter and configured goals
Smart banners use auto strategies, so ads will not be displayed without Metrics and goals. We have discussed the work of strategies in more detail in the article.
It is important to consider whether the system has enough data for your goal. Let’s say you’ve chosen the Optimize Conversions strategy, but there isn’t enough conversion data for the specified goal (there will be a gray circle next to the goal). Then the campaign will use a different strategy – it will give the maximum clicks at the specified price (CPC model).
Once enough data has been collected, the system will switch from CPC to CPA. If you enable a pay-per-conversion model, then the money will be charged when the user completes the specified goal. The system will focus on the indicated average conversion price.
In the settings, you should set both indicators – both the maximum cost per click and the average cost per conversion. In this case, you should not indicate the same values or even with a small difference (for example, 1–2 rubles). This will limit system performance and result in poor coverage. For CPC, for example, 10 rubles, indicate the maximum cost per click of about 20 rubles.
Mistake 3: discounts are not displayed
Smart banners can display product discounts. This option is enabled in the creative designer when setting up a campaign. It is important to check that there is a
Mistake 4: invalid header
In campaign filters, you can configure which field from the feed will be displayed in the title.
The tag should be written exactly as it appears in the feed. So, name, Name and NAME will be considered different parameters. If this is not done, an error will appear or the title will be substituted automatically.
Yandex warns that there can be no more than 81 characters in the ad text. Otherwise, it will be shown partially.
Mistake 5: the required tags are missing in the feed
When setting up smart banners, you specify which information from the feed should be displayed. Therefore, make sure that all the options that you selected in the settings are written in the feed. If the system does not find the data it needs, it will not be able to create an ad. For example, the Vendor field in Smart Banners corresponds to the
Mistake 6: incorrect links
For e-commerce to work correctly, we advise you to provide a link to the product card without UTM tags and other parameters, for example, filtering (? type = widget) or site language (? lang = fr)…
Direct will be able to automatically cut tags, but other parameters will not. If you leave them, then one of two things is possible: the user will not be able to click on the smart banner, or he will go, but to another page.
Mistake 7: the wrong type of business in the creative designer
It is important to choose exactly the type of business that you have already specified in the settings and for which you created the feed. Direct automatically loads ad templates and sizes that match your topic. If a business type is selected that differs from the one specified when the feed was uploaded, Yandex will not allow banners to be displayed.
Mistake 8: prohibited topics and no disclaimer
Smart banners may be limited and even rejected if a disclaimer or age tag is required for the ad. Also familiarize yourself with prohibited topics and required documents. Even if technically everything is configured correctly, smart banners may be rejected by moderation.
And one recommendation if there are few impressions
If, when setting up a target audience filter, you specify “Retargeting site visitors”, then ads will be shown mainly to those who went to the product cards. Users who went to the site, but did not go to the product cards, may not see your ad. Therefore, we advise you to select “Maximum coverage”.
With this setting, smart banners will be shown to those who have already visited your site. And it doesn’t matter if the user was looking at a specific product or just went to see the promotions or the address. You will also find a new audience among those who were interested in similar products, but were not on your site.
Smart banners are a useful tool for online stores and businesses with a large number of products and services. It is easy to set up and mostly automated: after launching the campaign, you only need to monitor the statistics.
The main challenges advertisers face are feed creation. But if there is a correct feed, then most of the work is done: Direct prompts will help with setting up the first campaign.
By the way, since April 1, Direct has a bonus program: you can get back up to 12% of the turnover of campaigns with conversion strategies (“Conversion Optimization” and “Target share of ad spend”), including for advertising with smart banners. These bonuses are also available to eLama users.