Driving internal traffic to your listings is an essential way to not only create initial conversions and sales but also to continue supplementing organic traffic to help your sales continue to grow. Here’s our top 10 tips for running successful Amazon campaigns to your product listings.
1. Optimize Your Product Detail Pages First
I know this sounds like a given, but the more optimized your detail page is prior to sending paid traffic, the higher it will convert and the more cost effective your campaigns will be. This includes optimizing with SEO Keyword Search Terms, specifically in the Title, Search Terms, Product Features and Description. In addition, without proper SEO search terms your Automatic Campaigns are likely to be largely ineffective since it won’t be targeting quality keywords from your detail page.
2. Setup your Campaigns Correctly
Start by creating a Campaign for each group of products that share similar keywords. Then use the Ad Groups to target different match types. (For example, each Campaign would have three Ad Groups: Broad, Phrase and Exact.) For Automatic Campaigns you’ll just need to create one Ad Group for all of your products that share similar keywords. Make sure to add Fulfilled by Merchant and FBA listings to each campaign so that your ads continue to run regardless of which fulfillment methods are active at any given time.
3. Place Variations in a Single Ad Group
If your products are setup as variations by size, color or flavor, it’s beneficial to put them in the same Ad Groups. Amazon will then run the ad showing the image and driving traffic to the most popular variation. Once a customer lands on the detail page they have the option to choose from any of the variations listed. If a customer happens to enter additional search terms specific to a single variation (such as a color) Amazon will show the customer that variation on the search results page and link to that selection on the detail page.
4. Run Both Manual and Automated Campaigns
While most sellers know the benefit of running automated campaigns initially to gain insight into top converting keywords there’s another extremely important benefit to continuing to run Automated campaigns, the ability to show up on your competitors detail pages under “Sponsored products related to this item.” Because of this, we highly recommend running both Manual and Automatic Campaigns for every group of products you sell. Here’s a breakdown of what’s Sponsored vs. Organic on a typical Amazon Product Detail Page:
You might have noticed in your Automated Search Term Report that an ASIN instead of a Search Term is showing up. In this case, Amazon customers are not searching for the ASIN, rather, your product shares enough organic similarities (title, product category, keywords) to another product that it shows up on your competitors detail page as a Sponsored related product.
It’s important to note that you cannot add the ASIN as a broad search term in a Manual Campaign to achieve the same results, Amazon merely categorizes it as a Broad Match type. In order to show up as a Sponsored products related to this item you must run an automated campaign. In addition, if your product is on a competitors detail page it is not possible to block that ASIN through negative campaign keywords in your automatic targeted campaigns.
Helpful Tip! Include the Campaign Type in your Campaigns Name: “Product (Manual)” and “Product (Automatic)” to help you easily differentiate them when viewing in the Campaign Manager.
5. Add Highly Converting Terms from your Automatic Campaign to your Manual Campaign
If you notice that your Automatic Campaigns are generating sales with search terms not currently in your Manual Campaigns we recommend adding them (you can add them as Broad, Phrase and Exact then optimize bids to see which performs the best). While currently this process is done through the Advertising Search Term Report, we’re about to introduce you to a much more effective way at doing this. If you’re interested in saving time and money managing your campaigns, read on…
6. Set your Manual Campaign Bids & Budget Higher than your Automatic Campaign
This will allow you to strategically bid for specific terms that convert better as opposed to just broad match terms which is the default and only option in Automatic Campaigns. It will also ensure that your Manual Budget is less likely to run out which should likely have a lower ACoS due to the ability to optimize on a more detailed level.
7. Avoid Overuse of Negative Phrase or Exact (But still use them)
While one might conclude that once you find highly converting keyword terms in your Automatic campaigns that it would make sense to add them to the manual campaign and then then as negative matches to the Automatic Campaign this strategy is not recommended. Adding too many negative keywords to either your manual or automatic campaigns can start to hinder the terms your products can rank for. Instead, you’ll want to reserve the negative phrase and negative exact match options either at the Ad Group or Campaign level for search terms that are completely unrelated to your products or yield little to no sales.
8. Bid on Competitor Brands Wisely but Always Bid on Your Own
For awhile this was a gray area. While Amazon prohibits the use of competitor brands in your products search terms up until recently there has been no policy against going after competitor brand terms in Amazon Campaigns. However, while it is still not a direct policy violation, Amazons algorithm is beginning to ignore branded terms in Campaigns making it less likely to get traffic from them. In addition, branded search terms tend to have a much higher CPC due to the fact that customers are in fact looking for that particular brand, lowering conversion rates and increasing costs to you. However, if you have competitor terms you currently bid on that are doing well there is no Amazon policy prohibiting it at this time.
One of the questions I get asked a lot by clients is, “Why should I bid on my own brand when I rank for it organically?” The logic is understandable, why pay to have someone click on your brand sponsored product, when they could just click on your organic result beneath it. However, the primary reason that bidding on your own brand is recommended is to secure and protect your brands sales. In short, if you don’t bid on your own brand, a competitor most likely will, stealing sales right out from under your nose. For Table-Mate, if you search for “Table-Mate” we have secured the entire top fold above the page: Headline Search Ads, and 3 Sponsored Product Listings giving us the full real estate of the page. Lastly, bidding on your own brand tends to be a low CPC and high conversion rate, so it’s highly recommended for every branded seller on Amazon.
9. Set Sufficient Maximum Daily Budgets
While Google and other PPC algorithms may penalize or reward you for your budget Amazon simply uses it to reach a max prior to stopping your ads from running. As long as your budget is sufficient to cover your bids there’s no hidden benefit from setting it higher. As long as you have sufficient inventory I recommend setting it as high as you can if your ACoS (Acquired Cost of Sale) is low, there’s no reason to stop sending traffic to your listings.
10. Use Ignite to Manage your Campaigns
One of the most tedious and costly aspects of Amazon is monitoring and optimizing your campaigns. Automatic Campaigns in particular are time consuming since they require that you download the automatic targeting report as a txt file then open it up and import it into Excel, then sort and filter the different Ad Groups and Campaigns to see which terms were actually making money. Well, all that’s about to change…
Seller Labs has done it again with Ignite, an Amazon Campaign Management tool that allows you to manage new or pre-existing campaigns by simply setting them up in Ignite, setting your target ACoS, then letting the algorithm do the analysis work for you.
Not sure which keywords to add, which ones to bid higher on or which ones to set as negative matches? No problem. Just log in and view Ignites recommendations for each campaign by Confidence level (amount of data) and Importance (impact to your campaign) and select Accept, Delay or Reject. When you create your Ignite Managed Campaigns you’ll want to place both your manual and automatic campaigns in the same Ignite Managed Campaign (called “linking”) that will allow it to analyze the shared keywords from both campaigns.