eBook Chapter 5: What “Lift” to Expect in SEM from Display Advertising

eBook Chapter 5: What “Lift” to Expect in SEM from Display Advertising

The following is an excerpt from the recent eBook, How Do You Make Online Display Ads Work for Automotive Dealers, discussing how online display advertising has evolved and is changing the way some auto dealerships and their marketing departments approach online advertising. This fifth chapter focuses on how display advertising increases the effectiveness in Search Engine Marketing.


Once you’ve come to appreciate the close relationship between display ads and search marketing, you’ll be anxious to know how your SEM will receive a boost by employing them together. 

Your potential customers are exposed to display ads on a constant basis. They will eventually begin to subliminally shape the way they search online to coincide with the language and terms they see. In essence, the display ads teach behavior and supply the keywords for users to find out more on certain topics. For this reason, display ads are a perfect partner for your SEM campaigns, making it more likely that your prospects will find you.

Plus, your target audience is more likely to buy from you when they do arrive on your landing page. Studies have indicated that one in four searchers exposed to display ads made a purchase afterwards. In the specific economic sector of auto dealerships, brand searches jumped exponentially after users were exposed to display marketing on particular models. Users also spent more time on dealership websites, vehicle detail pages and engaging with landing pages.

However, it is also interesting to note the conclusions drawn by a Harvard Business School report, “Do Display Ads Influence Search? Attribution and Dynamics in Online Advertising.” To summarize the findings:

Display ads do increase search volume, click through rates and sales conversions; Ads generated by searching do not result in increased interaction with display ads; While search may not be immediately affected by exposure to display ads, a significant boost will likely occur after two weeks; ROI analysis of display versus search continues to recommend search as the dominant spend, though a blend of the two is most effective. Performance indicates that many companies would still benefit from a higher search budget.


As such, the combination of search and display ads is a one-two punch for marketing departments, and you might consider adjusting your budget accordingly.