Do you want your advertising self-serviced or managed?


Many eCommerce players are joining the eCommerce media revolution and starting to offer their own self service advertising services to brand partners and sellers.

COVID19 accelerated the process. On the one hand it increased the traffic to online stores (making them more appealing to the advertisers) and on the other hand it decreased the effect of other media options (such as billboards and TV commercials).

2 weeks ago it was Instacart, few weeks earlier it was CVS, few weeks earlier it was and Kroger, and before that there were Walmart and Target.

Almost all of them chose to offer self service advertising on their websites, meaning that they are not going to count on an outsource demand stream like an ad network, and that they are enabling the advertisers to run and manage their campaigns by themselves (or by their agencies) and not going to manage it for them.

We have talked a lot about the reasons for taking the advertising business in-house. In this post we will discuss the reasons for choosing the self service approach.


Give control

Advertisers want to control and understand what happens to their advertising budget.

With self service you enable your brand partners and merchants to take full control on their advertising – They can choose  almost every aspect of their advertising strategy – which products to promote, how much to spend on each product and per click, what keywords should they target, what is the budget that they want to spend over time etc.

They can easily create new campaigns, manage, optimize and make changes along the way, add or remove products, keywords, change bids, change budget, split campaigns or stop them at any time.

Giving control comes hand in hand with transparency.

Your brands partners need to know exactly and in real time how their campaigns are performing so that they can take advantage of the self service option and make their campaigns perform better.

They should get clear campaign management console with detailed information and reports.

If they feel confident that they are getting all the data and they can control their campaigns they will also feel assured to spend more ad budget.


Transparency – Presenting the order ID’s of the products that were converted (source: Mabaya console)


Scalability and the long tail

Managed service by definition is not scalable – There is a limit to the number of campaigns and advertisers you can manually and efficiently manage.

Once your platform reached a critical mass, it’s inefficient to continue operating with representatives alone.

You can assign campaign managers to the big brands that are spending the most but what about the long tail of medium and small advertisers and merchants that are also willing to spend ad budget on your website?

The only way to let them participate is by offering a self service option.

This is even more important in these COVID-19 days. the virus forced millions of SMB’s to adapt and start selling online and therefor advertise online to promote what they are selling. In fact these millions of new sellers are the hope of the digital advertising business according to a new forecast by Magna (read here).

When doing so you should keep in mind that some small advertisers won’t need the advanced campaign management tools and options. To engage them you would need a one-click-campaign, automatic bidding and keyword selection options or simple advertising plans (like “choose the number of clicks and budget” and that’s it).


One click campaign – Bundles and packages for Sponsored Product Ads (source: Mabaya console)


Reduce cost

When the store chooses to let the advertisers manage their campaigns by themselves it means that it doesn’t need to do it for them and therefor it can reduce the requirements and overhead cost of campaign managers.

This is even more obvious when it comes to Sponsored Product Ads as there are no “creative” aspects that require supervising – The advertiser is not really creating an ad – They just choose products to promote that are already sold on your platform. Therefor there is less need to monitor or pre-approve each campaign.

It also reduces the cost to the advertisers as the publisher no longer needs to charge fees associated with campaign management or demand a minimum budget to start advertising on the website that would compensate for the trouble of managing the campaigns.


A brief history of managed ads service or Managed ads service is history

Do you know who else has shifted from managed to self service ads?

Publishers. 12 years ago.

In fact today every online publisher or anyone who sells online ads and this is it’s primary business is offering self service.


The top 10 ad sellers in the world – They all offer self service advertising


The do-it-yourself ad phenomenon is gaining ground as publishers build on what Google popularized through its self-serve text-based ad system. Most recently, The New York Times unveiled a self-serve display ad product for small and local businesses. Through a partnership with AdReady, the publisher is letting business owners create and manage CPM-based display ad campaigns to run on They can upload their own creative into the system or use its ready-made ad elements.”

This is a quote from a 12 years old article that was published on ClickZ regarding the brand new self service platform of the hot social media website of that time – MySpace.

Unfortunately for them it was too little too late.


About Mabaya

Mabaya’s Sponsored Product Ads platform is a white label solution for marketplaces and online retailers who want to run their own ecommerce media and offer self service advertising to their sellers and brand partners. Today more tan 50,000 sellers and brand partners are promoting their products in dozens of different eCommerce sites around the globe using the Mabaya platform.