The two cornerstones of Amazon marketing are search engine optimization (SEO) and paid sponsored advertising. Combining both efforts is a crucial strategy for growth on Amazon. In this blog post, we’ll explain how SEO and search marketing works on Amazon and how the two can be combined to improve overall results.
Amazon Search Engine Optimization Overview
When discussing SEO, we are referring to the overall optimization of product listing content with the end goal of high placement on the Amazon search engine results page (SERP). Optimizing listings means optimizing copy. You can put down whatever copy you want, but if you wish to rank on the SERP and convert sales, you must optimize for both the A9 algorithm and your consumer. For example, below is a keyword-stuffed title that might be well optimized for the algorithm, but not for the consumer:
The title is long and difficult to understand. If consumers saw this title on a SERP, they would likely keep scrolling to other listings. Brands must find a balance between titles and copy optimized for the algorithm but are also consumer-friendly.
When optimizing your listing, there are primary and secondary focuses. The primary focus should be your title, the key features, and the standard product description. These are what the A9 algorithm scrapes for when determining relevancy to consumers.
Second, focus on your A+ Content, Media Gallery, Pricing, Search Terms, and Reviews. These secondary focuses help drive conversions. A+ Content, photos, videos, and reviews are among the few ways consumers can connect with your product without physically touching it. Pricing is also important because if your price is too high, consumers will choose cheaper comparable products instead.
Amazon Advertising Overview
When talking about advertising on Amazon, we are referring to paid advertisements seen throughout the Amazon marketplace. This paid advertising includes Sponsored Product Ads, Sponsored Brand Ads, and Sponsored Display Ads. Paid advertising is the fastest-growing division within Amazon, and as such, the platform is steadily becoming a pay to play marketplace.
When should you use paid advertising? That depends on your goals. Are you trying to drive additional impressions and clicks? Are you trying to increase sales on specific ASINs? Are you trying to raise brand awareness? Are you launching a new product on Amazon? These questions will influence which types of ads to use.
Below are the types of sponsored ads on Amazon:
Amazon Sponsored Product Ads
Pay-per-click (PPC) ads that appear in strategic areas on Amazon, such as the top of the search results page and within a product detail page. These ads give brands’ products more visibility and increase the likelihood of purchase by consumers.
Amazon Sponsored Brand Ads
Formerly called Headline Search Ads, this ad type displays a banner ad at the top of the search results page. The banner ad contains a brand image and features up to three products. This ad type is typically best suited for generating brand awareness.
Amazon Sponsored Display Ads
PPC ads on Amazon and Amazon-owned websites and apps that target shoppers by searches, views, purchases, or products.
Interdependency Between Search Engine Optimization and Amazon Advertising
Now that we’ve covered the basics of SEO and Amazon advertising, dive into the interconnectedness of the two. The intersection takes place amdist keyword research, gathering reviews, setting up variations, setting up your listing media gallery, and Amazon compliance.
Keyword research identifies top trending keywords for your products that improve the chances of placing in relevant search results. SEO for product listings and search marketing both rely on keyword research to be effective. Add focus keywords into title and listing copy to build organic relevancy, improve ad performance, and overall placement.
The process of growing reviews compliantly is time-consuming, but they provide a level of trust that sellers need in order to persuade consumers to purchase. The number of reviews also directly impacts the performance of organic and paid placement. To improve your placement, you can run paid advertising to bring more converting traffic to listings, which will naturally help increase review numbers. Even more so if SEO has already implemented their review generation efforts.
Unfortunately, Amazon retired the Amazon Early Reviewer Program in April 2021, making it more difficult for new products to acquire new reviews.
Variations put like items together within a single Amazon listing, giving consumers the ultimate shopping experience. Variation listings accomplish two things that help improve SEO and search marketing performance:
- Variations can aggregate reviews and make a listing look more trustworthy. Will encourage more traffic to click ad.
- You can consolidate ads to focus on top child ASIN, but it will drive sales to the whole variation and improve rank.
The media gallery is the carousel of images and possibly videos that appears above the fold of a listing. Optimizing the media gallery entails uploading high-resolution, compliant images, and videos. For many ad types, the hero image is displayed in the sponsored placement. Additionally, you can use Sponsored Brand Videos to show specific features to shoppers.
Keeping up with Amazon’s terms of services is a full-time job, but doing so will ensure your listings and ads stay active. When working on Amazon SEO and search marketing, be sure to omit restricted keywords from listings to reduce the risk of listing suppression. You should also ensure that target keywords are within character restrictions, so they have weight in listing relevancy. It’s also worth noting that you can bid on phrases related to but not including restricted keywords to improve placement for those searches. Listen to podcast episode, Resolving Compliance Issues on Amazon, with Amazon Sellers Lawyer.
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- Selling on Amazon: 3 Questions to Ask Before Working with Third-Party Sellers (3Ps) - July 1, 2021
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- Amazon Strategy Guide: Creating a Unified SEO & Sponsored Ads Amazon Strategy - April 13, 2021