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Using SM.CN to further your advertising agenda
Source: | Author:QS | Published time: 2021-10-25 | 752 Views | Share:

A joint venture by Alibaba and UC Group, SM.CN launched in 2013 and is the second largest mobile search engine in China, after Today, the search engine boasts over 20 million active monthly users, and is the default search engine for Huawei and Xiaomi phone users. Read on for our advertising tips using SM.CN. 


1. Keywords 

The first variable to keep in mind when using SM.CN to advertise are keywords. While easy to simply pick some keywords to associate with your brand, researching search engine trends delivering traffic to your website can further optimize brand reach. On SM.CN, they have an official keyword planning tool (in Chinese: 关键词推荐) to help you identify the most appropriate keywords to target. 

By dividing keywords into different categories, the keyword planner can help you visualize ad groups more clearly. For example, in the image below, the keyword planner has grouped keywords regarding ‘General words’, ‘Synonyms’, ‘Product name/type’, ‘Price’, ‘Public praise/question words’ and ‘Aftersales’ together, allowing easy identification of commonly searched keywords associated with the brand and its products.


To further maximize the chances of brand exposure when keywords are being searched, each ad group should contain around 15-30 keywords. We recommend having as many keywords as possible on your account during the initial stages of SEM with SM.CN. 

Another factor to keep in mind is applying an exact match on shorter keywords, and a phase match to longer words. 


2. Bidding price:

It is important to research and understand the various keywords associated with your brand. This will allow for an informed initial bidding price for the different keywords associated with your brand. Keywords with high relevancy should have a higher bidding price, while keywords with lower relevancy should have a lower bidding price. Bidding prices can be tailored in the future, based on aggregated advertising statistics. 


3. Basic configurations:

Before using SM.CN, decide on your daily campaign budget. Set the bid modifiers accordingly, i.e. dayparting and geographic location. Negative keywords can be added to the campaign too. The auto keyword exploration function can allow you to explore new keywords associated with your target audiences’ selected interests, demographics, and locations. 



If you’ve previously advertised on other China SEM media i.e., these materials can be repurposed, provided the original materials align with the requirements of SM.CN. 

For brands wanting to generate leads via online forms, SM.CN has an ad form extension. Records for form inputs can be checked under the ‘Report’ section of the platform. 


Aside from the above-mentioned tips for advertising with SM.CN, we recommend analyzing your SEM performance data weekly, and further optimize your campaign with the strategies below: 

1. Review negative keywords

Export search terms from your SM.CN account, viewing only those terms with high spending. From there, identify invalid keywords from your search result – those with a high bid but low lead generation, and add these terms to the negative keyword list for your campaign. 

2. Increase impressions by adding more relevant keywords

Aside from using the official keyword planner tool, we also recommend adding additional keywords based on existing keywords. 

3. Increase clicks by improving the rank of your advertisement, and the quality of your creatives

Modify your bidding price based on the current rank of your advertisement, and further improve your creatives by utilizing various creative extensions. 

   Creative extensions of SM.CN

If your advertisement ranks within the Top 3, this will lead to a higher click-through rate, bringing increased traffic with higher intention. 


Lastly, it is important to ensure your ad copy creatives align and correlate with keywords in the same ad group. This will give the impression that your advertisement is addressing the user’s needs, prompting users to be more likely to click on your advertisement, increasing traffic. 


5. Including a call-to-action

Improve conversion by including a call to action for users. Adding conversion elements, i.e., inquiry form, chatroom, and phone numbers, directly to the landing page can make it easier for users to take action upon encountering your advertisement. 

For more information on China digital marketing, contact our marketing consultant at: 

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