There are two kinds of e-commerce companies: those who are selling their products on Amazon, and those who are not. The West’s biggest online marketplace (second in the world after Alibaba) is a universe unto itself. In addition to all the little guys on there, many of the world’s big brands and retailers now have a presence on Amazon.
If you are selling your products on Amazon, you know how critical it is to compete in this crowded space. Yes, you can endlessly optimize and tinker with your product listings and catalogs. You should be doing this by default. You should also be using Amazon Ads to get an edge on your competitors.
What are Amazon Ads?
Amazon Ads are a suite of advertising products that let you advertise on Amazon itself and across Amazon’s network of sites. They allow you to promote the products that you already sell on Amazon, and drive traffic to your website via video and display ads.
Why are Amazon Ads interesting? They allow you to use keywords to advertise the products you sell on Amazon, much like Google Ads allow you to bring your products to the top of the Google search results. This is a pay per click search advertising product that works inside Amazon’s ecosystem to target people who are already actively searching and buying.
Since Amazon’s Video and Display ads are more or less standard display ad network buys, we’re going to devote more attention to what we consider a more unique ad product for Amazon sellers — Sponsored Products, Sponsored Brands and Product Display Ads.
Before we get into the gritty details, here’s an overview of the types of ad products available to everyone — whether or not you sell your products on Amazon.
How to decide which Amazon Ads product is right for you
There is a very easy way of deciding what kind of Amazon Ads you want to implement.
Do you sell your products on Amazon?
You’ll want to start out running ads that appear exclusively on Amazon. Called Sponsored Products, Sponsored Brands and Product Display Ads, these ads allow you to upload your keyword list and choose which products you want to associate with your keywords. When people search on your keywords, ads for your product and/or product listings will appear in response.
Amazon Sponsored Products Ads show your products in the Amazon search results when a user types one of your targeted keywords.
Amazon Sponsored Brands Ads are only available to sellers who are registered brand owners. In other words, you need to be the owner or authorized agent for the brand trademark. Sponsored Brands Ads generate display ads on Amazon that feature your logo and up to three of your products when a user types one of your targeted keywords. These drive to a dedicated page containing the featured products.
Amazon Product Display Ads are a new ad product that allows you to advertise your products listed on Amazon by targeting similar products. Instead of choosing keywords to trigger your ads, you select similar products, product groups or interest groups. The magic of this product: it allows you to target your competitors’ products.
What if you don’t sell your products on Amazon?
Don’t sweat it if you don’t currently sell any products on Amazon. You can also buy display or video ads on a CPM basis that promote your products on Amazon and on its network. You can manage these campaigns yourself via Amazon DSP. Or if your budget is high enough, Amazon’s team will manage these ads for you.
How does Amazon advertising work?
Sponsored Products and Sponsored Brands are self-serve paid search campaigns, much like advertising on Google and Bing. You need to be an Amazon seller. In Seller Central, select Campaign Manager and choose the type of ads you want to create — Sponsored Products, Sponsored Brands or Product Display.
From here you’ll follow the standard process for setting up a paid search advertising campaign — you’ll go through the process of selecting products you want to advertise, setting your timeframe, maximum cost per click and entering your keywords or products for targeting.
As mentioned above, only registered brand owners can run Sponsored Brands Ads. However, anyone who sells online, whether or not you’re the brand owner, has the option to set up Sponsored Products.
Manual versus automatic targeting
Both Sponsored Products and Sponsored Brands ads are triggered when someone on Amazon searches on your keywords. In both cases, you can upload lists of keywords that will trigger your ad; this is the manual targeting option.
However, Sponsored Products also has an automatic targeting option. Instead of telling Amazon which keywords will trigger your ads, automatic targeting gives Amazon the power to pick the keywords that will do this. We recommend testing both targeting options to learn which brings you the best results.
What do Amazon PPC ads cost?
Just like other paid search campaigns, Amazon Ads are an auction; the higher you bid per click, the higher your ad will appear in the results. If you find you’re not getting enough clicks, or your placement is too low in the results, simply increase your bid.
The cost per click of your paid Amazon Ads will vary based on your product, your market, your geography and variables such as demand for your product and whether competitors are bidding on your keywords. You can set a daily spend, then watch your metrics during the first week of your campaign and adjust your cost per click accordingly.
Is it worth it to advertise on Amazon?
We can’t tell you if it’s worthwhile for you to advertise your product on Amazon. But we can share what we’ve learned from managing Amazon Ad campaigns for our clients.
Amazon customers are much closer to making a purchase decision than people who are browsing content or searching on Google. While every step in the consumer decision journey is critical to your bottom line, you want to give your products every possible advantage when people are this close to check out.
If you’re an Amazon seller, it’s likely that you are competing against other sellers who run Amazon Ad campaigns. You need to compete. If you have to decide where to allocate your ad budget, experience has shown us that Amazon Ads are a very savvy decision for anyone who sells on Amazon.
Still not sure how to start selling or promoting your products on Amazon? Contact us.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Digital Strategist @ Bloom