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Baidu search advertising tips for 2024

What is Baidu?

Baidu is the longest-running and most popular search engine in China, with 60% of the search engine market share and over 660 million monthly active users.

Baidu’s dominance is a result of its superior local knowledge, compliance with local laws and censorship, and a better understanding of the nuances of the Chinese language.

Furthermore, Google is partially blocked in China, meaning it does not have any significant presence in the country at all.

The screenshot below shows what Baidu’s homepage looks like on a computer. As you can see, it has a simple design that focuses on the search bar, similar to Google:

The screenshot below shows what Baidu’s homepage looks like on a mobile phone. As you can see, the mobile version displays a wider variety of content:

Baidu’s dominance over other search engines in China makes it a vital platform for search engine marketing in the country – but I understand that this can be daunting if Baidu is not a search engine you are familiar with.

Never fear – in this blog post, I will explain the basics of search advertising on Baidu. Let’s begin by looking at how search ads display on Baidu’s search engine results page (SERP) and how this compares to Google.

How search ads display on Baidu’s SERP

The illustration below depicts the typical layout of a search engine results page on Google versus Baidu:

The search engine results pages are similar on Baidu and Google in that organic and paid results are intermixed in the search results.

However, compared to Google, when you search for a keyword, Baidu tends to showcase more information and ad formats directly on the first page, presenting a greater amount of content and advertising simultaneously.

Types of Baidu search ads

Baidu search ads can be broadly categorised into text ads and Brand Zone ads.

Notably, even when users navigate to the next page of Baidu’s search results, the same ads often continue to be repeatedly displayed. It is common for both text ads and Brand Zone ads to co-exist, resulting in a dual exposure of ads.

The screenshot below shows Baidu text ads highlighted:

The screenshot below shows Baidu Brand Zone ads highlighted:

Let’s take a closer look at Brand Zone ads.

The “Brand Zone” is located in first place in the Baidu search results. It displays brand information in a prominent way, utilising text, pictures, video and more.

Baidu offers various Brand Zone ad types. There are many different Brand Zone advertising options available, depending on your keywords, the element or page to be affected, and the length of your contract with Baidu.

The screenshot below shows a “general” Brand Zone ad:

The screenshot below shows an “advanced” Brand Zone ad:

As you can see from Xiaomi’s advanced Brand Zone ad above, the whole page has a totally different feeling from a regular Baidu SERP. Aside from the Baidu menu at the very top of the screen, every element above the fold is controlled by Xiaomi, even the background. In fact, even Baidu’s logo is a different colour from what it usually is!

Advanced Brand Zone ads are a high-cost branding option, primarily targeted at consumer brands. It allows impactful impressions on the first page, delivering diverse brand information in various formats such as video, images, shopping and more.

Make sure to choose the Brand Zone ad type that best aligns with the characteristics of your product, service or brand.

Final thoughts and tips for search advertising on Baidu in 2024

How can you efficiently utilise Baidu for search advertising in 2024? If you are considering entering the Chinese market and want to quickly increase brand awareness and generate traffic, then I highly recommend running ads on Baidu, which continues to have the highest search engine market share in China in 2024.

I particularly recommend utilising Baidu Brand Zone ads to enhance your brand awareness and trust in China, as these ads are especially eye-catching and powerful.

And remember, to truly connect with your Chinese audience, it is crucial that your search ads are both linguistically accurate and culturally relevant.

Need help with marketing on Baidu?

I hope this blog post has been a useful overview of the key tips and trends to think about when doing Baidu search advertising in 2024.

If you would like assistance with any aspect of Baidu search advertising, reach out to Webcertain today! Our friendly team of Chinese advertising specialists will be happy to help.

Want to learn more?

This blog post is part of a series on APAC digital platforms in 2024. Check out the others below:

You can also watch our webinar recording on this topic here.

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Elly Kang

Performance Marketing Manager at Webcertain
Elly is a Performance Marketing Manager at Webcertain. With a background in digital marketing, she has managed PPC campaigns for several major corporations. She has experience working across various APAC advertising platforms including Google, Naver, Yahoo and Kakao. She has lived and worked in both the UK and South Korea, the latter of which is where she now resides. Elly’s journey reflects her adaptability and expertise in navigating the dynamic landscape of performance marketing across diverse cultural contexts.

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