Instacart Ads

Advertising on Instacart 101: Where Do My Ads Show?



Jul 29, 2021

In the Advertising on Instacart 101 series, we introduce readers to Instacart Ads, look at some key concepts, and talk about the value they can provide brands of all sizes — from emerging challenger brands to the very largest category leaders.

In this article, we look at one of our most popular advertising product offerings, Featured Product, and describe all the ways it can show on the Instacart Marketplace, as well as some of the benefits it offers.

What’s a Featured Product?

As the name suggests, a Featured Product is a type of ad on the Instacart marketplace which brands use to feature, or highlight, a product to relevant consumers directly at the point of purchase.

It’s a paid search placement that puts products on premium digital shelf space in high visibility areas. Similar to paid search terms on other ecommerce marketplaces, Featured Product ads show up when consumers search for products on Instacart. If you want to advertise your chocolate ice cream on Instacart, you can use a Featured Product ad so that when consumers search for ‘chocolate ice cream’ or just ‘ice cream’, your product can appear as one of the first products in the search results.

If consumers click on your Featured Product ad, you are charged a fee.

We use a cost-per-click (CPC) payment model which means when consumers click on your ad, you are charged a fee. How much you are charged depends on the result of the auction our system runs each time a placement is displayed to a consumer — but you’ll never be charged more than the maximum bid you set.

We talk more about how these auctions work in another Advertising on Instacart 101 article called ‘How Do 2nd-price Auctions Work?,’ which you can read here.

Why should I use Featured Product ads?

Featured Product ads allows brands of all sizes to pay to promote their products to consumers by having the products show up in high visibility areas. They often boost the placement of products where they might show up organically and can increase the number of times a product shows up.

Here are some of the reasons brands run Featured Product ads:

Where do Featured Products show up?

Featured Products can show up in a few different ways as consumers use the Instacart platform to shop from their favorite local retailers — as they browse, search for products, and after they complete an order.

While consumers browse on Instacart, Featured Product ads can display on the main storefront and within departments. Behind the scenes, our system works to ensure the products it features are relevant to the consumer — so if they’re browsing ‘Pantry’ department, it features products the consumer might be interested in, like the ketchup shown above.

When consumers search for products, our system can place relevant Featured Products in the first three spots on each page of search results, as well as dispersed throughout the page. We target consumers with specific products relevant to their search terms, displaying them in the Featured Products spots in the search results. This helps provide a great user experience for our consumers and ensures we’re putting our brand partners’ products in front of interested consumers.

If consumers click on an item to see its details, we can also display Featured Product ads for related products below the item details.

After consumers place an order, we’ll make some suggestions for last-minute additions to the order that the consumer might be interested in. Among these suggestions, the system can include Featured Product ads.

Another place your Featured Product ads can show is the ‘Your Items’ list — this is a list of products the consumer could be interested in based on their past purchases. Consumers love our “your items” functionality as they can use it to quickly create baskets of their go-to items. Since these shopping lists can be quite long, we offer brands the opportunity to move their frequently purchased items to the very top of the shopping list to ensure inclusion in that particular shop.

And that concludes our look at where ads can show up on the Instacart platform. Check out the other entries in our Advertising on Instacart 101 series to get up to speed in a hurry on the fundamentals of Instacart Ads.

Advertise with us to get in front of consumers when they’re searching for products like yours on the Instacart Marketplace. For more information and to get started, visit



Instacart is the leading grocery technology company in North America, partnering with more than 900 national, regional and local retail brands to deliver from more than 75,000 stores across more than 13,000 cities in North America. To read more Instacart posts, you can browse the company blog or search by keyword using the search bar at the top of the page.

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