Baidu Ads: PPC – a good way to enter the Chinese market

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The Importance of Baidu PPC Advertising in China Marketing: Baidu is China’s largest search engine with a huge user base and market share. Baidu APP has 677 million monthly active users, 6 billion+ daily searches, and 15 billion+ daily infomercial distribution. Such a huge platform makes Baidu the main platform for advertisers to reach potential customers.

Compared with Google Ads, Baidu Ads offers unique advantages in China, particularly in brand exposure, user data processing, and audience targeting. Additionally, Baidu Ads provides comprehensive support for localized marketing services. In this article, we will analyze the unique features of Baidu Ads to help companies enter and capture the Chinese market quickly.

Baidu Ads Account Setup

Setting up a Baidu PPC account is the initial step toward entering the Chinese market and offers a more secure platform compared to Google Ads. This enhanced security arises because Baidu requires comprehensive verification of each business before allowing ad placements. To prevent illegal advertising and ensure only legitimate businesses can advertise, companies must submit various legal documents, including industrial and commercial qualifications.

This thorough vetting process, which typically takes about two weeks, helps safeguard against imposters, making Baidu safer for users. The process is expedited for businesses not involved in specific sensitive industries such as finance, healthcare, and gaming.

However, there are two major problems foreign companies face when applying for a Baidu account:

  1. First, they can only provide foreign commercial qualifications (makes it difficult)
  2. Second, the website does not have ICP license (Internet Content Provider license, which is needed for publishing content in Mainland China)

Setting up a Baidu PPC account can be a daunting task for many foreign businesses. The intricate requirements for documentation and certification often lead to frustration and abandonment of the account creation process.

Recognizing these challenges, certain service providers (just as Jademond Digital) bring extensive experience and expertise to the table. Their deep knowledge of the application process and strong partnerships with seasoned professionals enable them to expedite the process effectively.

Officially required information:

  1. Original Foreign Business License (Electronic Version): Submit an electronic file of the original business license issued in your country.
  2. Stamped Copy of Foreign Business License and Translation: Provide a stamped photocopy of your foreign business license along with a certified translation. Both documents should be stamped to verify authenticity.
  3. Bank Voucher with Seal and Translation: Submit a stamped copy of a bank voucher, such as a recent transaction record (last 3 months) or an official bank statement confirming your company’s account. Include a certified translation of this document, stamped for verification.
  4. Local Policy Website Screenshot and Translation: Take a stamped screenshot of a local government website displaying policies or regulations relevant to your business. Also, provide a stamped screenshot of the same page translated using your browser’s translation feature to demonstrate comprehension of the content. Both should be provided in paper format along with the URL of the local government website.
  5. Official Homepage Screenshot and Stamp (Paper Version Provided): Provide a stamped screenshot of your company’s official website’s homepage. This document should be provided in paper format.

Official translations should be done by certified translation companies. These companies must be acknowledged buy Chinese authorities. Any translation must be stamped with the translation company’s seam seal.

Find a list of 50 designated agencies here:

Simplify Baidu Ads Account Setup Process

Experienced service providers like Jademond can help to streamline the process for you. While the officially needed documents, translations, translation agency stamps, etc. are still needed, we can take care of most of these steps for you. All you need to provide is:

  1. Original Foreign Business License (Electronic File): This is the official document that proves your business’s legal registration and status in your home country, which needs to be submitted in an electronic format.
  2. Bank Information (Payment Records, etc.): These financial documents are necessary to prove the financial standing and operational activity of your business. This could include items like bank statements or records of financial transactions.

Jademond will on your behalf take care of

  • Enterprise Inquiry Screenshot: Jademond can manage the creation of screenshots from online business registries to verify your company’s legal status, handling this part of the process on your behalf.
  • Promotional Website Screenshots: Jademond also offers to take care of obtaining screenshots of your promotional website, which are necessary for the application.
  • Translation and Certification Handling: Jademond will take care of all necessary document translations, including the certification of translation authenticity with appropriate seal stamps and other verification marks. This ensures that all documentation meets the required standards for submission.

The streamlined application process through Jademond minimizes hassle and stress for customers. Overall, although Baidu’s account setup is more complex than Google’s, it offers higher authenticity and enhanced security. Baidu’s real-name system also boosts user credibility. In contrast, setting up Google ads is simpler, requiring only basic information such as an email, website, and credit card details.

The Unique Features of Baidu Ads

Baidu PPC advertising excels in China due to its deep understanding of local user behaviors and robust localization services. It offers advertisers a variety of tools including branded ad zones, advanced data analytics, and precise targeting, helping to rapidly enhance brand visibility and conversion rates.

Key Features:

  • Ad Formats: Baidu provides a wide range of ad options, from time-specific product ads to tailored Brand Zones, enabling dynamic and flexible marketing strategies.
  • Audience Targeting: With sophisticated targeting technologies, Baidu connects ads with the right audiences, ensuring higher engagement and effectiveness.
  • Optimization Tools: Powerful analytics and optimization tools allow for continuous improvement of ad performance based on real-time data.

Baidu Ads supports promotional strategies for both large brands and smaller enterprises, providing essential marketing solutions that drive success in China’s competitive market. This streamlined approach is designed to help advertisers efficiently navigate Baidu’s features, maximizing their impact in the Chinese market.

Brand Ads

Choosing the right display format is crucial in ad creation. Baidu offers a unique option: Brand Ads. Advertisers can secure ad placements for a fixed period at a predetermined price, ensuring consistent visibility. This fixed-time, high-exposure advertising format isn’t available on platforms like Google AdWords. Below, we explore the benefits and key features of Baidu’s branded advertising zones.

Brand Zone

The Brand Zone on Baidu allows advertisements using only brand names or a combination of brand names and product terms. This ensures high visibility for brands on the first page of Baidu search results, significantly enhancing brand awareness and image.

  • Prominent Placement: Brand Zone ads appear at the top of the search results, without competition from other search ads. This prime positioning guarantees that the ad content is the first thing users encounter when searching for relevant brands or products.
  • Expanded Visibility: These ads cover more screen space than typical search ads and can include multiple elements such as brand logos, product images, and links. This not only offers greater visibility but also ensures that the brand makes a strong first impression.
  • Customized Design: Brand Zone ads allow for customization to meet specific brand needs, aligning the ad’s style with the brand image for higher recognition. Unlike standard ads that use generic templates, these customized ads can effectively convey unique brand personalities.
  • Strategic Brand Promotion: Ideal for sustained campaigns and shaping the image of large brands, Brand Zone is particularly effective during brand events, holiday promotions, new product launches, and similar high-impact occasions.
Baidu Brand Zone Ads for the brand term “pantone”. The characters “品牌广告” under the ad indicate it is Brand Ads (different from general ads which are only indicated by “广告”)

Common Words Products Zone

The Common Words Products Zone offers a flexible and broad advertising strategy. It allows advertisers to book the top ad position in advance for a specific time period, ensuring prominent exposure for their brand during that slot. This method differs significantly from the Brand Zone in terms of keyword selection and the duration for which ads can be purchased.

  • Keyword Flexibility: Unlike the Brand Zone, which is restricted to brand names or combinations of brand names and product terms, the Common Words Products Zone allows for the use of general product terms without the need to include brand names. This flexibility enables advertisers to target a broader range of search users.
  • Time-Specific Purchases: Advertisers can secure ad placements for designated time periods. This ensures top ranking for their ads during these slots. A key distinction is that in the Common Words Zone, ad slots can only be purchased for up to two weeks per month, leaving the other two weeks unavailable for purchase. This time-bound approach helps in planning targeted, effective advertising campaigns.
Baidu Brand Ads for the common term “高内涵成像” (High Content Imaging). The characters “品牌广告” under the ad indicate it is Brand Ads (different from general ads which are only indicated by “广告”)

Special Features of Brand Ads

Brand Ads in Baidu allow for specific link enhancements within the advertisement materials. When users click on these materials, the clicks are attributed directly to the linked URL, boosting its prominence in search results.

  • Official Website Recognition: The URL provided in the ad is recognized as the brand’s official website. This ensures that it consistently appears at the top of Baidu’s search results, reinforcing the brand’s online presence.
  • SEO Benefits: Baidu PPC not only promotes your ad but also positively influences your SEO rankings, particularly with brand-related keywords (by our experience). This synergy between PPC and SEO strategies can amplify your overall online marketing efforts, allowing for mutual reinforcement and increased visibility.
This screenshot shows how to enable this feature for your website.

Baidu Jimuyu: Landing Page Tools

Creating an effective landing page is a crucial step in advertisement creation. For advertisers without a suitable landing page, Baidu offers “Jimuyu,” a landing page creation tool designed to speed up ad creation.

Rapid Landing Page Creation:

If you lack a marketing website or need mobile optimization, “Jimuyu” allows you to quickly develop landing pages, helping you swiftly capture market opportunities.

  • Templates and Components: The platform provides an extensive library of templates and components suitable for both mobile and PC. These include interactive elements like rotating charts, FAQs, layout tools, service booking forms, informational displays, and lead conversion buttons. This diverse range allows users to build professional-looking landing pages without any need for coding.
  • Drag-and-Drop Editing: With its user-friendly drag-and-drop interface, “Jimuyu” simplifies the page creation process. Users can easily layout their page and customize it with various components through straightforward dragging and dropping actions.
Drag & Drop editor of Baidu Ads’ Jimuyu Landing Page tool – here showing a mobile landing page layout.

Jimuyu Landing Page Quality Inspection Tool

  • Jimuyu includes a content quality testing tool that assesses whether the content of landing pages adheres to specific standards. It evaluates the quality of text, images, and videos to ensure compliance.
  • The quality control (QC) tool rates each new landing page based on Jimuyu’s quality inspection criteria. Pages that score highly are prioritized in search results, enhancing their visibility and display frequency.
The Baidu Jimuyu Quality Score ranges between 0 and 100.

Ad Targeting Options

Industry Focus Targeting

1. Brand Preference Crowd Targeting in Baidu Ads

Baidu ads enable advertisers to specifically target users based on their affinity for certain industries and brands. For instance, within the automobile sector, advertisers could target users who favor specific brands, such as BYD or Tesla. This precision targeting allows advertisements to reach audiences who have already shown interest in particular brands, thereby enhancing the relevance and effectiveness of the ads and potentially increasing conversion rates.

2. Category Intent Crowd Targeting in Baidu Ads

Baidu ads offer advanced targeting options that include user preferences for specific industries and brands, as well as their intentions. Advertisers can, for instance, target specific brands within the automobile industry, such as BYD or Tesla, and further refine their targeting by selecting different user intent groups. These intent groups could range from grassroots opinions, leading models of major brands, price-sensitive consumers, to potential buyers actively seeking a purchase.

This approach allows for precise targeting whether focusing on broad industry interests or specific category intents. However, it’s important to note that there are clear category boundaries and some smaller or niche segments may not be available, limiting access to certain narrower or less active audiences.

3. Device Detailed Targeting

3.1 Cell phone model targeting

Baidu ads allow advertisers to target based on specific cell phone models, which is very effective in attracting users of specific brands or models of cell phones.

3.2 OS version targeting

Advertisers can choose a specific iOS or Android version for ad placement to ensure that the ads are compatible with users’ devices.

3.3 Vehicle Owner Attribute Crowd Targeting

Vehicle type targeting: Baidu ads can be targeted according to the vehicle owner’s fuel type (e.g., oil, pure electric, hybrid, etc.) and the vehicle’s geographic region.

Vehicle type targeting: Baidu ads allow advertisers to place ads based on the brand model of the user’s vehicle.

3.4 User behavioral targeting

Baidu Ads excel at leveraging localized user behavior for precise targeting in the Chinese market. Below, we explore some of the unique ways Baidu harnesses localized data to connect advertisers with their ideal audiences.

Targeting specific Baidu postings: Baidu ads allow advertisers to target users based on the specific postings they read. This means that advertisers can target ads to certain specific interest groups (e.g., automobile posting bars, parenting posting bars, etc.) to ensure that the ad message accurately reaches users who are interested in that topic.

APP Behaviour: Baidu ads can be targeted based on the apps in the trackable user’s mobile device, and in some cases can even target users who have newly uninstalled apps in the last month. This enables advertisers to target ads to groups of users who use specific apps.

Information flow platform: Baidu ads can be targeted based on users’ reading behavior on the information flow platform. Advertisers can place ads to users who are active in Baidu’s information flow (e.g. Baidu Encyclopedia, Baidu News). This gains access to their preferred type of reading and ensures that advertising messages can effectively reach users with reading habits.

4. Crowd Remarketing

Baidu’s remarketing capabilities extend beyond traditional methods, leveraging not only a user’s browsing history and search behaviors but also incorporating specific contact details like phone numbers. This integration allows for a more precise approach to remarketing. After collecting conversion data and evaluating it, advertisers can use these contact details to re-engage with users who have previously interacted with their website. This targeted outreach enables the delivery of personalized advertising content, significantly enhancing the likelihood of increased conversion rates.

5. Accurate Crowd Targeting

After analyzing user data, advertisers can identify key demographics of the converting audience. This insight allows for more nuanced optimization based on detailed crowd profiles. Baidu Ads offers advanced targeting options that allow advertisers to finely tune their campaigns. Advertisers can create specific audience segments based on comprehensive data such as user search behavior, browsing history, and additional demographic attributes.

With Baidu Ads, the settings for defining audience segments are particularly detailed. Advertisers can select from a wide range of demographic attributes, including gender, age, car ownership, marital status, spending habits, education, income levels, mobile carrier, life stages, industry affiliations, and even the regional origin of a user’s cell phone number. This level of granularity in targeting facilitates highly precise ad placements, enhancing the effectiveness of campaigns especially in localized markets and on specific devices.

Tracking, Data Collection and Analysis

Building on the advanced targeting capabilities of Baidu Ads, which leverage detailed user data for audience segmentation, we now shift our focus to the platform’s robust tracking, data collection, and analysis features. Baidu Ads capitalizes on the use of IP addresses and localized tools compliant with Chinese regulations to gather rich user information. This integration of targeting and data management techniques ensures advertisers can not only reach but also understand and engage their audiences more effectively.

User Data IP Collection

Real-Time Visitor Reports:

  • Baidu allows advertisers to access the IP addresses of people who view their ads, a feature not available in Google Ads. Through Baidu’s analytics dashboard, advertisers can access detailed visit information for up to 1,000 visitors within a two-week period. This includes data on visit time, geographic location, device used, page navigation, and more.

Historical Access Behavior:

  • The platform identifies visitors by IP, offering insights into their current site activities. This includes tracking whether visits originate from promotional channels, the search terms used, the number of pages visited, and specific entry pages, providing a comprehensive view of user engagement.

Ad Blocking for Abnormal Visitors/IPs:

  • To maintain data integrity, Baidu allows the identification and blocking of abnormal IPs/visitors—such as bots or fraudulent activities—that could skew website analytics. This feature helps prevent misleading data analysis and poor decision-making.

Baidu “Ai Fan Fan” for Sales Leads Collection

Online Customer Communication:

  • Ai Fan Fan incorporates a real-time online customer communication feature, allowing advertisers to interact directly with potential customers. This interaction enhances the customer service experience and boosts conversion rates. Additionally, when customer service representatives are unavailable, an intelligent robot can automatically handle inquiries, making it easier to collect customer leads.
Baidu Aifanfan’s Customer Communication feature.

Sales Lead Management:

  • Ai Fan Fan streamlines the management of sales leads. It automatically generates follow-up records and assigns leads, significantly enhancing the efficiency of sales teams and improving customer conversion rates. Furthermore, conversion data can be directly integrated into the Baidu advertising backend, eliminating the need for additional settings and simplifying data collection. This seamless integration ensures that advertisers can effectively track and optimize their lead management processes.

Baidu Jimuyu’s Lead Monitoring System

Because Baidu provides unique localization tools for page creation, it also provides unique tracking and evaluation tools for these pages. Based on the data collected, the user’s demographic profile can be further analyzed. Based on these profiles, Baidu PPC can also provide more detailed and unique crowd classification for further ad optimization.

1. Automated Lead Recording:

  • The lead detailing system within “Jimuyu” automates the capture of user interaction data on landing pages. This includes information from submitted forms and clicked buttons, enabling companies to gain a comprehensive understanding of user behavior.

2. Automatic Conversion Data Integration:

  • Conversion data from “Jimuyu” landing pages are automatically sent back to the Baidu promotion backend, eliminating the need for additional API setups on the website. This allows Baidu to use the data to directly optimize campaigns in the backend, such as adjusting conversion bids based on real-time insights.

3. Lead Management and Follow-up:

  • Baidu Jimuyu offers lead management tools that assist organizations in tracking and managing leads efficiently. These tools enhance data collection processes for sales teams and improve customer conversion rates by ensuring timely follow-ups and targeted interactions.

Jimuyu Heat Map Analysis

baidu Jimuyu provides a powerful analytical tool for tracking and evaluating results – heat map analysis. It helps advertisers to gain a deeper understanding of user behavior on “jimuyu” landing pages. Optimize advertising effectiveness and user experience through intuitive visual data.

Click distribution: “Jimuyu” click heat map shows the distribution of user clicks on the page. Advertisers can understand which areas or elements attract users’ attention and help optimize the layout of important buttons, links and CTAs (Call to Action). The yellow color shows the areas where users clicked.

Attention Distribution: By analyzing the attention graph, advertisers can identify what content is being ignored or skipped by users. And adjust the page content and layout accordingly to ensure that important information is not overlooked.

Browsing reach map: Browsing touchdown charts show the depth of users’ browsing on a page, helping advertisers understand users’ reading habits and concerns. Advertisers can see which part of the page the user has scrolled to. From there, they can adjust the layout and length of the content.

Maximize Your Market Impact with Baidu Ads

In this article, we’ve outlined the powerful capabilities of Baidu Ads, from targeted advertising to advanced data analytics, all tailored for the Chinese market. Baidu’s platforms like “Jimuyu” and “Ai Fan Fan” further enhance advertisers’ ability to engage customers and drive conversions effectively.

As the digital landscape in China evolves, leveraging Baidu Ads becomes crucial for businesses aiming to expand their presence and achieve measurable success. Embrace the future of advertising with Baidu’s comprehensive tools and localized insights.

Ready to elevate your business in China? We are here to assist with Baidu account setup, strategy development, and feature optimization tailored to your business needs. Contact us today to build a winning Baidu Ads strategy and unlock your brand’s potential in the world’s largest digital market.

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