Hubspot’s CEO and Cofounder Brian Halligan was on to something when he said, “It’s not what you sell that matters as much as how you sell it!”
If you study brands that have lasted for generations and are still leading the pack in their sectors, you’ll have to agree that there’s such a thing as a silver bullet in advertising. You just need to know where to look.
Amazon PPC advertising may just be that silver bullet if the available stats are anything to go by:
- WebFX says you get two dollars for every dollar you spend on a regular PPC ad, and 50% of PPC visitors are more likely to convert than organic traffic.
- The stats look more appealing if you’re using Amazon PPC. Amazon sellers typically see 14% of PPC-driven sessions convert into sales. That means you can bet on 14 sales out of every 100 clicks your ad gets.
- Even better, new data shows Amazon advertising is 68% cheaper than Google, 44% cheaper than Facebook, 79% cheaper than Instagram, and 13% cheaper than Walmart. Imagine what it could do for your business if you’re working with an excellent Amazon PPC campaign structure.
If you structure your Amazon PPC ad campaigns right, there’ll be much to show for your hard work.
- A good PPC ad campaign brings profits and helps you scale your business. It’s an ad management format that reveals opportunities and allows you to maximize them.
- A poor campaign structure does the opposite, making you oversaturate the same old opportunities and fail to stand out.
The importance of a proper Amazon PPC campaign setup
You’re allowed to be spontaneous. The world would be painfully dull without it. But we must remember that most things that make life livable, like plumbing systems, transportation infrastructure, and even your favorite movie character, take intense planning.
With that said, there is good reason that a well-designed Amazon PPC campaign setup ensures success. Primarily, developing this plan can help you organize your campaign with clear goals, and shows how much you need for every objective. It also helps you stay within budget by dividing keywords and Amazon Standard Identification Numbers (ASINs) into purposeful campaigns.
But that is not all. A well-structured Amazon PPC campaign provides the best chance at targeting and isolating the most effective and hardworking keywords, something that can be crucially important depending on your industry and brand.
Understanding the PPC campaign structure
This is the skeleton that holds everything together on your account. To see positive results that drive growth, you need to know how to structure an Amazon PPC campaign in a way that makes sense for your business.
A good account structure should have campaigns, ad groups, and keywords. Your budget should be split between different campaigns based on different needs—for example, product type, keyword, and keyword type.
Consider these factors when creating your structure:
- Keywords and Match Types. The more keywords that you have, the more complex your campaign structure becomes. If you have rugs with multiple sizes and colors you will need to structure your campaigns around those differences. Making matters more complicated, you’ll want to separate those keywords by match type to allow for higher bids on your high-value exact match keywords than your general broad match terms.
- Type of Products. Your Amazon Store may be developed enough to offer different product types. In this case, creating a campaign for each product category helps you have a cleaner and more organized structure.
- Goals and Metrics. How do you want to view and organize stats? Again, it may be ideal to create a campaign for each product or brand and get separate reports.
Campaigns host ad groups centered on a specific set of products to achieve a particular goal. Ad groups give more details on what you’re advertising, with each ad group targeting a particular set of keywords. The choices you have with your ad groups depend on which type of campaign you select:
With an Amazon automatic campaign, the platform singles out keywords from your title, description, and other relevant segments of the product listing to display ads for different keyword searches.
Amazon automatic targeting optimizes your ad campaign over time by collecting data from online shoppers—such as what they buy. Next, it adjusts your ads according to this data to improve conversions.
While Amazon automatic targeting is an excellent avenue for PPC ad campaign beginners, it relies heavily on Amazon optimizing your ads for you by taking control of keyword selection and bid management.
A manual campaign requires handling most of the work yourself— starting with keyword research, to management of those terms to favor certain products. Despite the added legwork, you get to group specific keywords and control your bids by placing them in their respective ad groups.
The result is precise targeting, which means you can allocate more money to the best-performing keywords.
Ad groups are groups of ads with similar sets of keywords. They provide pockets to organize, manage, and track different products within your campaign. Except for similar keywords, ad groups have similar ad themes and bids.
Keywords and match types
In addition to choosing specific keywords for your campaigns, you can match the different types of searches with keyword match types.
Since online users use wildly different search terms, it’s virtually impossible to guess all of them. Enter match types, which help you get as close as possible to what customers are looking for so they can find your products.
There are three keyword match types:
Here, the search query must be the exact keyword or phrase or be a very close variation. Close variations are often terms written in the plural. For example, bikes instead of bike. Also, the words in the search query must follow the same order and have no extra terms.
Suppose the exact keyword match is “mountain bikes”; in that case, eligible exact keyword search terms should be “mountain bike” or “mountain bikes”. Search terms like “cheap mountain bikes” would be ineligible.
There’s more wiggle room with broad matches leading to less relevant traffic. The search query usually contains any of the keywords, or close variations. The words can be in a different order, have extra words, or contain synonyms. For example, if the broad match keyword is “suede heels women”, a search query with the words “suede heels for women” or “women nude suede heels” would work.
Contrastingly, searches with words like “women heels” or “nude heels” are ineligible.
Phrase matches accommodate the exact phrase and close variations but must be in the same order as the keyword term. Also, the search query may have extra words before or after the keyword term.
For example, let’s look at the phrase match keyword “kitchen tiles.” Search terms such as “top kitchen tiles” or “best kitchen tiles” fall within the phrase match parameters. However, searches such as “bathroom tiles” would be ineligible.
The best way to maximize keyword matches is to bid the highest on exact keywords, less for phrase matches, and the least amount on broad match keywords.
Negative keywords removethose results are often irrelevant to your products or do little to achieve conversions.
There are two types of negative keywords: negative exact and negative phrase.
- In negative exact, ads don’t appear on search queries containing the exact phrase or close variation.
- In negative phrase keyword matches, ads don’t appear on search queries containing the complete phrase or close variations.
You can use negative keywords to your advantage and eliminate the chances of your ad appearing in an irrelevant search query, all while keeping the vital keyword and the opportunities for your ad to be found for relevant results. These terms work exceptionally well when you add phrase and broad match keywords to your advertising campaigns.
Say you have added the broad match keyword ‘bag’. A good example of a negative phrase match keyword here would be girls. In this case, a search query containing the words “women’s bags” would be eligible, while a search query with the terms “girls’ handbags” would be ineligible.
Types of Amazon’s PPC Campaigns
Now that you know how to create a PPC campaign on Amazon, let’s dive into the types of campaigns available.
Sponsored display ads
Sponsored display ads allow sellers to access shoppers within and outside Amazon, exponentially increasing the ad’s reach. They are displayed on product detail pages, customer review pages, and external websites and apps.
Sponsored products appear within search results and product detail pages to promote specific products. The point of these campaigns is to increase visibility and drive targeted traffic to specific listings.
Sponsored brand ads
Sponsored brand ads showcase brand logos, custom headlines, and a product selection. They appear at the top of search results, providing more brand visibility while selling their product portfolio.
Brands create and manage campaigns using these ad products through the AMS dashboard for vendors or the seller central account for marketplace sellers. Amazon Storefronts are some of the latest additions to the Amazon PPC merchandise suite, offering a way for businesses to promote their products on stylized landing pages.
Amazon Demand Side Platform (DSP)
Amazon is full to the brim with varied sellers across industries. With over nine million marketplaces on the platform alone, your competitor’s ads show up right next to yours. So, you need all the help you can get to show off something your competitors don’t have.
DSP is a platform created by Amazon to help increase your brand awareness by buying video, audio, and display ad placements, and using available data to target consumers on and off of Amazon.
In other words, Amazon’s DSP stretches Amazon’s marketplace beyond its confines so you can do more with the array of tools it provides. You can reach audiences in at least ten other places, including Kindle, the Amazon website, Published Partners, and IMDB.
DSP also comes with impressive benefits, such as exclusive insights and shopping signals to target relevant audiences, and detailed reporting to track progress and help make data-backed decisions. The bonus is you can keep your brand messaging consistent with a full-funnel strategy.
Video does well on its own as an ad medium. Amazon-sponsored brand video ads were created to help you pitch your product in the shortest time possible, in an appealing way, while making it easy for a user to digest your message.
They show up in the middle of the first page of SERPs, and take up more space, making them hard to miss.
Another unique advantage of these ads is that you can use them as how-to videos on using your products and include other relevant details that can improve conversion rate.
You’ll need a reasonable budget to promote your Amazon PPC campaign.
A typical Amazon PPC ad costs between $0.02 and $3 per click. The good news is you don’t have to spend any more money, like hosting and transaction fees, apart from the cost per click. You have two budget options:
Fixed daily account budget
A fixed daily account budget covers your entire advertising account needs for a day. Consider a business that runs four ads on its account at $80 for each ad. The business’s daily ad spend under a fixed daily account budget is $320.
If your campaign runs out of budget on Amazon, the ads stop running and resume the following day. One of the pros of this option is controlling how much you spend on ads daily. You can even set a lower limit when necessary.
Average daily budget for individual campaigns
The second option is the average daily budget for individual campaigns. This budget relies on the maximum amount of money you’re willing to spend on every single ad in your campaign.
To calculate your average daily budget, take your daily budget and multiply it by the days you have left until the end of the month.
Assume the business example above starts an average daily budget on the fifth day of March. In this case, it would have 26 days left in the month. With a spend of $80 per day, its average daily budget would be $2080. That means that Amazon will serve up $20 worth of ads every day until the end of the month.
If you spend less than the maximum daily spend in 24 hours, you have more to spend the following day. The biggest advantage? You can allocate more money to the ads that perform better over time.
Keep these tips in mind to make the most out of your PPC ad budget:
- Set a Low Default Bid Amount. Your default bid amount is how much you pay for every click. It’s also called Cost Per Click (CPC). A high CPC reduces your chances of getting more clicks, while a low CPC improves your chances of attracting more leads.
- Calculate How Long You Need to Run the Campaign. A fixed daily amount limit helps set a daily achievable goal if you run your campaign for less than a month.
- Consider the Profits. Think about how much you want to make from your sales. This point will also help set a reasonable budget and track your spending to make the most of your resources.
- Choose Long-tail Keywords. You can have multiple keywords for one sponsored product listing on Amazon. Take advantage of long-tail keywords because they include more search query details and make finding it easier.
Tips when setting up your Amazon PPC campaign
Now that we’ve detailed how to structure your Amazon PPC campaign, including all the relevant moving pieces, you likely have a lot to consider for your business. When planning out the process, keep these helpful tips in mind:
Stick to the campaign structure throughout
The only thing online shoppers dislike more than an image and actual product mismatch is repeat ads caused by the overlap created when you have no structure. Embrace the use of the structure throughout everything you do both for your potential customers, and to help you stay organized.
Keep similar products in the same ad group
Ad groups have the same keywords for the products inside that ad group. If you keep the products apart, you underutilize the keywords and lose multiple opportunities to score leads or make a sale.
Amazon recommends adding as many similar products to the ad group as possible with manual campaigns because you are more likely to receive ad impressions when the products share the exact keywords.
Choose your keywords carefully
Keywords are the bait used in eCommerce for drawing potential customers. Unfortunately, the most popular attract cutthroat competition and are more expensive than most businesses can spend.
But you can work around this by finding an SEO tool that shows you which keywords perform best. Trellis’s Amazon keyword difficulty tool helps gauge keyword difficulty and competition so you can create a winning Amazon PPC strategy.
The idea is to find valuable keywords without battling it out in a stiff competition. While at it, aim for long-tail keywords for more accurate precision and a chance to draw voice search users.
Adjust your spending according to performance
Ad groups use the same keywords and reveal which ones are the most effective over time. Remove the products that fall short in ad groups to attract more sales and get the best ROI.
With intuitive Amazon advertising software, you can bank on more impressions and clicks to well-performing ads, helping them perform even better.
Amazon PPC Campaigns are suitable for every eCommerce business owner, but they only work when you have a structure that makes room for you in a saturated marketplace.
One of the ways to do this is to master how to add keywords to your Amazon campaign. With Amazon PPC tools from Trellis, you can conduct competitor analysis and use real-time data to improve sales, pricing, and more to make the most out of your PPC.
Frequently Asked Questions
What’s the difference between a campaign and an ad group?
Campaigns are made up of one or more ad groups. Ad groups are as straightforward as they sound: groups of ads with the same keywords to improve targeting. Every ad also includes relevant landing pages when users click on a product or description.
What do I do if my Amazon ads are not working?
If your Amazon ads are not working, you may be dealing with one issue, or several problems linked to one another..
- Your daily PPC budget may be too low or run out before many online users can see your ad. Ensure your budget is enough to last you a whole day or up to peak hours when most users are online.
- Another reason could be irrelevant keyword targeting. If the Amazon search engine can’t find the relevant keywords for your business, it can’t help you be seen online. Check the keywords you bid for and bid higher for terms that will improve your rankings.
- A less common but valid reason is a violation of Amazon’s policies. For example, you may have used inappropriate images, made false claims, promoted illegal products, or bought customer reviews. Ensure you understand Amazon’s policies and stick to them to avoid being locked out.
How much should I spend on my Amazon ads?
There is no one magic number or specific calculation to help you decide how much you should spend. Ideally, aim to spend less on advertising than the profits you make. You can determine how much you should spend on ads by calculating your ACoS.
Your ACoS is the amount of money you can comfortably spend on advertising. If you get $150 from a sale and spend $90 on advertising, your profit will be $60, or 40%. Ideally, your ACoS should be less than 40% to make your business profitable.
Is Amazon PPC worth it?
Stats show Amazon PPC ads make up 30% of Amazon sales. In a lot of ways, Amazon’s campaign for beginners is cost-effective option for marketing, plus it allows complete control over how much you spend on ads. PPC works much faster than organic traffic, placing you on the top of SERPs without extensive effort. It’s also worth noting that bidding successfully on a specific keyword also improves organic ranking for the same keyword, improving your chances of conversion.
How many keywords can I use on Amazon PPC?
Amazon has a limit of 1,000 keywords, but reaching this limit does more harm than good through the effects of keyword dumping, which can mean:
- Mixed keyword strategies
- Varied keyword match types
- Difficulty in naming your ad groups accurately
Worse, it’s doubtful that you’ll win all impressions if you use 1000 keywords. Amazon will pick out 100 keywords so you can bid on them and then pick the next 100 the following week. It creates a vicious bidding cycle for only some of your chosen terms.
Instead, try choosing 35 to 60 keywords per ad group. Next, prioritize high-traffic, high-impact keywords by bidding higher on them. Assign lower bids to broader keywords. For more information on how to run a successful Amazon PPC campaign, contact us today.