Alibaba PPC campaign evaluation
Alibaba launched their bidding service on March 1st, 2009. Paid members on Alibaba China can bid for top 5 and last 2 spots of each search page. Must give Alibaba high credit for introduction this program, which is very pioneering, I guess many other B2B sites will follow this move.
As a paid member on Alibaba China, I have been playing with Alibaba PPC, here is my observation of Alibaba PPC.
1) Search and Click volumne
I was on No.1 spot for 3 main keywords of some household products I am dealing with，Alibaba didn’t disclose the impression and search numbers, in the past 5 days, I only got 1, 1, 4, 8, 3 clicks. I am sure people will click our AD as we are the NO.1 spot, so I think the search volume for our keywords are not so big. Nevertheless, the visitor quality is really high, today I only got 3 clicks, among them, 2 potential clients are looking to purchase more than 10,000USD products value respectively. That is said, Alibaba do attract high quality buyers!
2) Bid price
The minimum bid price set by alibaba is 0.3RMB, sellers can’t bid lower than 0.3RMB. The average price to make to the top spot, as I have researched, is about 1RMB. For some hot products, it has reached 10RMB. Considering most buyers on alibaba are looking to buying large quantity products at very large value, that means, if your conversion rate is 1%(100 click can bring you one deal), the average profit margin on alibaba I think is at 10%, generally speaking and we suppose the average purchase value is 5000USD, so if you bid 10RMB for the keyword, you spent 1000RMB(100 click) to make 500USD(about 3400RMB) profit, and what is important, the client will be your client for a long time(that means you will get many repeat business if your products can compete well in the market).
So I think it will still be economical to bid up to 10RMB for top spot, and I believe the price will go up that way very soon.
3) Sellers reaction to Alibaba paid listing
Alibaba has been aggressively promote their PPC program, but at the moment, there are only small proportion of sellers showing interests, judging by the bidders number and bidding price for most main keywords. We think it is a good timing to the program, and the sooner, the better.
4) PPC account management
Alibaba don’t provide analytics program to suggest who visit you, where they are from, how long they stay on your websites, etc. They just told you how many clicks you get for each keywords and how much you spent. One difference between Alibaba PPC and Google Adwords is that alibaba allow you to see which companies have bid on the keywords at what price, which will more easily cause bidding war.