As an Amazon seller, promoting your products with ads is a no-brainer. What better way to market your product than to run PPC ads targeted at customers on a platform as massive as Amazon. People are already browsing the website with their cards in hand, ready to buy. So, it would help if you pushed them a little bit to make that conversion.
With PPC ads, you can get more visibility for your products as they appear at the top of the search results page. This Amazon PPC guide aims to help beginners like you understand AMZN’s paid advertising platform. By using Amazon PPC ads, even newbies can start driving traffic into their newly-launched stores.
If you want to get the best out of your ads, you’ll need to refine and develop an effective PPC strategy that works even as a beginner. And that’s why we’ve prepared this Amazon PPC guide tailored to new sellers interested in leveraging PPC.
In this Amazon PPC guide, we will cover what PPC is and the types of sponsored ads. We will also tackle how to properly set up ad campaigns so you won’t burn your advertising money.
Ready to learn more about pay-per-click ads? Then let’s get started!
Amazon PPC Guide: What is Amazon PPC?
There is always a way to promote your listings in every marketplace. While some of them are usually free (like featured products), some are paid as well. Paid ads are some of the biggest moneymakers and income generators globally.
Did you know that Google, one of the world’s biggest search engines, earned a whopping $124 billion in 2020? This huge sum of money was generated from one avenue alone – its Google advertising revenue. That just gives you an idea of how big advertising is for some of the world’s most popular and traffic-heavy websites. (Source: Statista)
PPC (Pay-Per-Click) is an advertising solution that allows vendors and sellers to promote their listings. Simply put, sellers on the platform can create advertisements for their products. They only pay a fee when a customer clicks on their sponsored ads, thus the name pay-per-click.
The pay-per-click system is a much-preferred way to promote ads because impressions don’t charge you anything. As long as the target audience sees your listings, you can still build awareness. Even if they don’t click your ads, they can still see them. And because you only get charged when the audience clicks, you don’t have to spend as much money.
Why Is An Amazon PPC Strategy Important For Sellers?
As consumer behavior changes, more people are starting to shop online. Because of this, getting your product in front of people has become more difficult. Since there are more buyers, more sellers are also trying to compete for traffic on the platform. To capture more sales, exploring new strategies and techniques are essential.
While optimizing your listings to target the right keywords is great, sometimes it is not enough. Organic traffic can only get so much. Some people don’t even click your listings even if you are already on the first page.
However, you get to promote your products using targeted keywords that convert by using paid ads. You can use a combination of both organic and paid traffic to boost your position further. And with the help of this guide, hopefully, you’ll learn how to do it right.
What are the types of PPC ads?
AMZN offers three types of ads: sponsored products, sponsored brands, and sponsored display ads. Sponsored Products and Sponsored Brands ads target potential customers using keywords. On the other hand, sponsored display ads target potential customers with browsing and shopping activities. Let’s take a look at each:
- Sponsored Products: This is the most widely used PPC ad on the website. Sponsored Products are ads that promote individual product listings. They appear on page one of the search results, usually at the top, within, or alongside search results. Sponsored Products also appear on product detail pages. Here’s an example of sponsored ads.
- Sponsored Brands: Sponsored Brands are ads that promote a brand and its product portfolio. This is done by displaying multiple products (up to three), a brand logo, and a custom headline. You have to be a Professional Seller enrolled in the Brand Registry to use this ad. Sponsored Brand ads are displayed at the top of, alongside, or within search results. Here’s an example of Sponsored Brand ads (Store Spotlight):
- Sponsored Display: Sponsored Display ads promote single products to shoppers on and off of Amazon based on their shopping activities. Where sponsored display ads are shown depends on the targeting options you choose. On AMZN, sponsored display ads typically appear on product detail pages and alongside or within search results. Here’s an example of a sponsored display ad on AMZN:
What type of PPC Ad is right for you?
With several types to choose from, it can be difficult to pinpoint which one is the right for your business. After all, different niches have different audiences, and it can be difficult to predict the behavior of each. However, what can be a good gauge for choosing the right ad for you is your RoAS (Return on Ad Spend).
Certain ad types, combined with certain bidding strategies, can lower ad spend for your business. Sometimes, running a combination of Sponsored Brands with a close and loose match keyword strategy work wonders. In other niches, this combination might not be too effective.
So, how do you know which ad type is right for you? Simple. Create a campaign and test. By split testing, you’ll accurately know which one is right for you. Using the data provided by the ad reports, you will be able to make an informed decision. Testing and adjusting is the best Amazon PPC guide that would work in any business type.
Amazon PPC Guide: How does Amazon PPC Work?
Ads are displayed for free but on a cost-per-click basis, which means AMZ only charges you when a shopper clicks your ad.
Now, you may be wondering, “how is the cost per click determined?”. They determine the cost-per-click through a second-price auction. This means that sellers submit their bids, the price they want to pay per click. The highest bidder wins the auction and gets the coveted ad placement. Instead of paying the amount bid, the winning bidder pays $0.01 more than the second-highest bidder. Thus, getting your average CPC low is the key to running profitable Amazon PPC ads.
Here’s how the PPC auction works:
- A customer searches for a product on the website using a particular set of keywords
- AMZ runs an auction, selecting relevant ads that target the keywords searched for
- The highest bidder wins the auction and the winning ad is displayed on the website
- A customer clicks the ad
- The winning bidder pays Amazon the second-highest bid plus $0.01.
How to Set Up Your PPC Ad Campaign
Before we delve into the process of creating a PPC ad campaign, you should know the different campaign types. If you want to run ads, you can either create an automatic campaign or a manual campaign.
For automated campaigns, automatically matches your ads to relevant or related search terms/keywords based on the information in your product listing. While for manual campaigns, you provide the search terms/keywords for your product ad. Your ad will only be displayed if the customer’s search term matches your selected keywords.
In Zonbase Keywords, simply type a search term in the box. The tool will bring up related keywords and their estimated monthly search volume and relevance.
Starting Your PPC Campaign
Now, let’s walk through the process of setting up an automatic PPC ad campaign for Sponsored Products.
- Log into your Seller Central account.
- Click the Advertising tab and select ‘Campaign Manager’.
- Click the ‘Create Campaign’ button below the graphs
- The different ad types will be displayed. Select Sponsored Products.
- In the Campaign settings, you will be required to enter the following information:
- Campaign Name: We recommend developing a structure for your campaign name for easy organization. For instance, you can choose to name your campaign after the product.
- Start Date
- End Date: Filling this field is not compulsory. You can leave the field blank if you want your ad to run longer.
- Daily Budget: This is the maximum amount you will spend on your ad campaign every day. AMZ deducts your ad costs from your account balance. If the funds are not available, they will charge your credit card.
Setting up an Automatic Campaign
- Next, select your targeting type: manual targeting or automatic targeting. (we’re using the latter for this Guide). AMZ usually recommends starting with automatic targeting if you’re new to PPC advertising. You can then use the best-performing keywords from your automatic campaign to launch an automatic campaign later on.
- Choose your campaign bidding strategy. You can choose dynamic bids whereby your bids will be adjusted based on your prospects of making a sale. Alternatively, you can choose fixed bids whereby the bids you set will not be adjusted.
- Create an ad group and enter the ad group name. Also, choose the products you wish to advertise.
- Set a bid for your ads
- Cross-check the entered information and launch your campaign.
And that’s it, your ad is launched! After some time, make sure you monitor the performance of your PPC ad campaigns and make adjustments when necessary.
Creating an effective Amazon PPC strategy
It’s not enough that you have learned how to run ads with this Amazon PPC guide. Maintaining an effective strategy is integral to your campaign to ensure that you don’t waste money. To help you out, here are some basic strategies you can use in building a solid PPC management strategy:
Increase Conversion Rates By Adding Negative Keywords
One of the best ways to increase your conversion rates is by adding negative keywords to your campaigns. Negative keywords are filters that you can use to avoid showing your content to people who use these specific keyword triggers. For example, adding the negative keyword “free” on your PPC keyword list will ensure that your ads won’t show to people who use the keyword “free” on the Amazon search bar. By filtering people who are just looking for free products, you can slowly but surely improve your conversion rates. You can also lower your advertising costs significantly by removing people using your negative keyword list on their search terms.
Use The Right Keyword Match Types
Keyword match types make it easy for you to target a specific type of audience and improve your conversion rates. There are three main types of keyword match types on AMZ: Phrase, Broad and Exact.
In broad type, your ads will be triggered if a customer searches using your keyword in any order. For example, if your keyword is “ball,” then your ads will be shown to customers who use “red ball”, “ball for dogs”, “round ball for kids”, and any other instance where “ball” appears. They are usually the most general type of matching, and they are often used only for gathering data. They don’t convert as well because they are too general.
In phrase match type, the ads will be displayed if the keywords appear in the same order. For example, if your keyword is “red ball”, then your ads will be displayed if a shopper used the keywords “red ball for kids” or “kiddie red ball”.
For exact match type, your keyword will only appear if the buyer searches for the exact keyword in the same order, with no other words, phrases, or suffixes. If your keyword is “blue ribboned ball”, your ads will only be shown if the customer types “blue ribboned ball”. This gives the highest conversion rates, but the traffic might not be too big since it is also an exact match type.
Knowing what keyword match type to use in your PPC campaigns will help lower your advertising costs and improve your conversion rates.
This Amazon PPC guide will not be complete without reminding you about testing. Consistently test out each type of ad campaign that you are running. Don’t rest on your laurels because you made a couple of sales. Continue to play and test around with manual and automatic keyword targeting. Split testing will let you see what’s working best for your products.
Use Zonbase For Keyword Research
Perform a detailed keyword inventory and research using the Keyword Tool of Zonbase. Try focusing on related keywords that competitors use on their products. If they are using these keywords to optimize their listings, it means these keywords are bringing in traffic. Reverse-engineering these keywords mean that you’ll be banking on their traffic too.
Set Daily Budgets
When you are just starting, make sure to set daily budgets as well as default bids. Try to bid around 50 to 100% higher than the AMZ recommendation to ensure that you’ll win the bids.
Let Campaigns Run For A Week Before Making Changes
Before starting to run your reports and making major adjustments, let your campaign run for at least one week. Letting your campaign run for only a few days and then doing major changes is not recommended. Why? Because it will not give you accurate data, you need to make an informed decision in such a short time.
Use Automatic Campaign Reports To Find Keywords
Sometimes, it is better to let AMZ do the job for you. After all, they often know what they are doing (well, most of the time). Automated campaigns generate ad reports when you run them. So if you start to run out of keyword ideas, use these generated ad reports. Check the report and find the keywords it used, then repurpose them for your next manual campaigns.
Let Keywords Get Clicks Before Adjusting
Before you even start removing, changing, or adjusting a keyword from your manual campaign, check its number of clicks. To give it accurate data, try to let the keyword get at least 10 to 15 clicks before adjusting it.
Adjust and review consistently
Do not rest on your laurels. Always keep a constant check on your campaigns and see how you can improve them. A consistent review of your ad reports should be done at least once a week. Using the ad reports, you can modify and adjust the keywords you are bidding on as needed.
Manage Your Amazon PPC Campaigns With ZonPPC
One thing you should not do is to set up your campaigns and leave them unattended. If you want to get the most out of your ad spend, you’ll have to learn how to manage your campaigns effectively. Amazon PPC management is however not a walk in the park, so it’s best to automate this process using Amazon PPC tools.
We recommend using ZonPPC, a PPC management tool in the Zonbase software suite. This tool uses artificial intelligence and machine learning to launch and manage campaigns automatically. You no longer have to spend time constantly changing your bids and adjusting your budget, ZonPPC does it all for you. All you have to do is set your starting bid and daily budget. This tool then discovers keywords that can win cheap auctions, scales the best-performing search terms, and marks non-performing keywords negative.
If you don’t want a fully automated campaign, you can set up the campaigns yourself based on your goals. Then ZonPPC’s automation algorithm will manage them for you, and you can also adjust them as you wish. Using this tool, you can manage your advertising costs, access valuable data to make business decisions, track the performance of your campaigns, and review them accordingly.
ZonPPC is a surefire way to lower your advertising costs yet increase your returns. You can access this tool when you sign up for the ZonBase legendary plan at $67/month. Your legendary subscription not only gives you access to the ZonPPC tool, but you also gain access to a wide range of product research, keyword research, and listing optimization tools that will come in handy when you’re creating your campaigns.
For sellers, Amazon PPC is the best way to increase your visibility, build brand awareness and boost sales. With the tips in this Amazon PPC guide, you’ll be running successful campaigns that will take your business to the next level.