With millions of Amazon sellers competing for almost every industry, the potential for visibility and attracting customers seem to get slimmer and slimmer. But here is the thing. As long as you consistently apply the proper approach, then you’re on track to increasing your sales.
An essential consideration in Amazon is understanding how Search Engine Optimization (SEO) works. You must understand the current scenario and the critical strategies to cracking Amazon’s A9 algorithm.
With that, here is a detailed and step by step guide that shows you how Amazon product ranking algorithm works as well as the essential strategies and tools you need to hit the coveted top spots.
Let’s get started.
How Does Amazon Search Works?
Similar to Google, Amazon assesses the search results via its algorithm, which again, considers various conditionings and factors.
Amazon’s underlying A9 search engine has an algorithm that considers several parameters to compute the relevancy of millions of products stored in its database. That applies to every search query customers enter.
Before we tackle deeper the strategies to optimize your Amazon product listings, you need to have a basic understanding of how Amazon search works. We’ll provide some critical details about the Amazon search results page, the various categories on the search result page, sponsored products, and search filters.
1. Amazon’s Search Result Page
The Amazon Seller Central implements a comprehensive system to categorize its product listings. When a customer or a user browses Amazon in search of something, there are two ways the products appear on the search results:
- List View: This layout shows about 15-16 products on every search result.
- Gallery View: This layout features about 24-25 products on every search result.
Understanding this is important for you to categorize the products correctly using these views and filtering.
2. Amazon’s Sponsored Products
If you’re searching for Amazon products within a particular niche and you notice that the same company is ranking high for each, these are more likely sponsored products. You can see them on different pages across varying industries or niches. Typically, sponsored products appear on the top part of a category page or sometimes be combined with organic listings.
Aside from the proper keyword bidding strategies, you must gear for the sponsored product listing as part of your Amazon SEO strategy. By implementing the right Amazon SEO techniques and PPC campaigns, your products can potentially rank on the top of the sponsored products.
3. Amazon’s Search Filters
On the left-hand portion of your store, you’ll see the filter fields. These filters cover the product category, seller rating, brand, shipment method, product condition, color, and others. Mind you. Amazon has a brilliant and ever-improving algorithm, just like Google and other search engines.
These algorithms are designed to easily understand or identify if your product is blue or black as long as it is cited in the product listing copy. It’s only when this specific information is provided in the listing copy that your product qualifies to appear in the subset of the filter query. That is why you need to optimize your store’s listing.
For example, you are selling a Packaged Arabic Coffee from ABC brand, and you want your listing to appear in the category “featured Coffee Bestsellers” as well as in the “CBA Brand” filter view. You should incorporate these descriptions as accurately as possible while categorizing them in Seller Central.
Correlating a Search Query & a URL
When filtering search results, Amazon analyzes a listing’s URL. Here the standard parameters you should consider.
- Keyword: This is basically what a customer inputs to search for a product or service. It helps Amazon understand or determine what your store is all about, therefore, addressing its general requirement. For this article, we’ll cite “Packaged Arabic Coffee” as an example.
- Node: Each category of Amazon comes with a certain number (ID), which is addressed via the Node parameter. To identify the exact ID, search for the URLs of the categories on Amazon.
- Brandtextebin: Using the “Brandtextebin” parameter helps you compare how various products perform from their scope. For instance: “Arabica Coffee from ABC brand” vs. “Robusta Coffee from XYZ brand.”
How does Amazon Search Engine Ranking Works?
If you notice, the Amazon Sales Rank follows an inverse ranking system. It means that if your store has a poor performance, your products will rank low, but if it’s meeting Amazon’s standards, it will rank high.
Until today, however, both Amazon users and experts are still uncertain about the concrete factors that influence sales rankings. But based on their experiences and results, here are three things to consider.
- Similar to Google, Amazon utilizes a search engine where any user can browse for desired products or services. That means there is also SEO involved, and you need to keep track of that if you want to optimize your listings.
- Potential customers will surely search for your product before looking at it amongst other similar products. That is where the importance of boosting your product’s visibility comes to play. Rightly so, this is also where Amazon’s SEO works. By devising and implementing the proper Amazon SEO practices, you’ll improve your products’ rankings right away.
- While you are researching how to rank high on Amazon’s listings, your competitors are doing the same. That is why it’s imperative to start materializing the SEO strategies immediately.
Every Amazon seller knows the importance of its search engine and how hitting the top search results play a pivotal role in creating a profitable and sustainable business. Just think of it this way. If your products do not appear on the first page of search results, they get low to zero visibility and, therefore, zero or low sales for your store. But if they show up on at least the top five of search results, then you’re on track to generating daily or monthly sales.
What role does A9 play for a successful business?
Simply put, A9 is Amazon’s algorithm that decides which products to rank on search results based on the keywords or queries customers enter into the search box. The results depend on the customer’s previous purchases and shopping preferences.
Specifically, Amazon abides with the following criteria for selecting which products to appear in the front pages and how these are ordered:
- The volume of previous purchases for a particular product or service
- Preferences and behavior of past customers
- Relevance to search queries or key terms
Aside from the above, there are multiple other factors to consider. But because A9 is Amazon’s top corporate secret, the functionality cannot be exactly revealed. With a few experiments and assessments of sellers’ best practices, however, you can have an idea of how it works. That is the same thing we are detailing on these articles.
Factors that Influence the A9’s Search Rankings
Two essential groups are covering Amazon’s A9 elements, and these are:
* Price – If your products have higher rates compared to your competitors, you’re putting yourself in the losing sheet.
* Stock Supply – Having an “out of stock” record can potentially lead to severe drawbacks for your store. Either, Amazon will rank your listing lower or remove them altogether.
* Text Relevance – It merely pertains to how your product listing is optimized using the proper title and description.
* Sales Velocity – The more products you sell, the higher you boost your store’s rankings and create a profitable business on Amazon.
With all that in mind, let us now delve deeper into Amazon’s considerations for product optimization.
Critical Fundamentals you should Know about Amazon SEO
Earlier, we discussed the best practices of categorizing products as well as the definition of the URL. This time, let’s detail how the “optimization” part is done exactly because it’s the more important consideration.
Take note that Amazon gears to provide the best customer service and experience, recognizing that only a happy user will remain an avid subscriber of the company.
That is why Amazon SEO covers optimization practices for both the search engines and, more importantly, the users. These two factors are imperative in Amazon’s ranking algorithm.
To further tackle that, let us categorize these in terms of desirability and discoverability. That will give you a better picture of how you are going to best address the said two factors.
When we aspire for desirability, we are focusing on the user and the user experience. That means we implement practices or strategies to convert them into raving customers of your store. Among the critical on-page factors to note are:
- Attention-grabbing product photos
- Optimized product title and meta description
- Competitive product price
- Positive product reviews and high ratings
- Customer-friendly text and paragraphs
- Appealing product title that prefers customers’ click-through rates
- Presenting the product’s unique value proposition
Unlike desirability factors, discoverability aims to address the factors that evaluate how a product is displayed and the probability of its sale. As we highlighted earlier, Amazon prefers putting products with a high conversion rate on the top. Among the specific indicators it considers are:
- Amazon keyword research and optimization
- Shipping Cost
- Availability of Stock
- Fulfillment Process
Best SEO Practices to Boost Product’s Rankings on Amazon
Now that we’ve covered essential factors about Amazon SEO, let us now detail the time-tested practices you should apply regardless of the evolving conditions and trends.
Practice I: Amazon Product Title
The product title is the most important ranking consideration in Amazon’ SEO. Make sure that you include the following details in your title with the product name first: brand, product, material, quantity, and color.
Take note. The product title should have a maximum character of 100. Don’t overstuff it with the keywords. Instead, integrate these naturally as to how customers will perceive. Don’t set a tone for penalties that will drop your ranking.
When selecting keywords, opt for those with a high search volume, but make sure you give a necessary explanation of the product.
Practice II: Amazon Keyword Research for Product Key Terms
Before choosing keywords, assess which ones your top-ranking competitors are using then extract them.
You can make use of tools such as the Free Amazon Keyword Research to help you save time and energy when doing your keyword research. Make sure the keywords you choose have a considerable search volume. Further, take note of long-tail keywords that are rarely used by top sellers but have potentials attracting huge search volume in the long run.
By incorporating these keywords, your store easily pops up with the demands of both existing customers and prospects. Again, by knowing the keywords that your customers look for, you’ll understand their pain points or needs and how your products can address these.
Practice III: Pricing Amazon Products
Customers always prefer the most affordable options, even to the point of disregarding quality. But here is an important reminder. While you gear for quality products and best customer experience, you should ensure that the prices complement as well.
In short, sell the best quality products with the cheapest rates. One of the latest tools you need to integrate to generate the best pricing options is the amazon repricer. There are various options to integrate, depending on your given situation.
For more information about pricing options, check out Seller Snap. You’ll be able to access tons of references there.
Practice IV: Amazon Product Images
In most cases, customers are drawn to a store or product because of appealing visual baits. That is why make use of High Definition (HD) and better resolution images to appeal to users. Amazon recommends images with at least 1000 pixels in width or height so as not to lose their quality when zoomed.
To level up your images’ appeal, try integrating innovative tricks. That will also help portray a credible depiction of the product and boost your store’s conversion. After all, an appealing visual has dramatic aesthetic impacts to a buyer.
Practice V: Amazon Product Description
Since the product description primarily aims to convert a user into a customer, make sure you highlight the positive characteristics of the product with the proper keywords.
In doing that, appeal to the emotion of the user via a positive sales argument. In other words, highlight how your product can address the problem or need of the customer.
Practice VI: Amazon Products in Bullet Points
Customers typically prefer descriptions of a product that are presented in neat and clear bullet points, considering every important aspect of it.
That is why, refrain from using paragraphs to describe the features, instead, make use of compelling bullet points. Ensure that you integrate the critical information needed, such as size, weight, and color. Along with these, place the keywords naturally.
Practice VII: Product Stock Availability
When a user buys a product from your store but then it’s out of stock, that can significantly reduce your Amazon rankings. So here are points to consider:
- When using the Amazon FBA, set automatic reminders to notify you when you would have to restock or at least.
- But if you’re selling your product on other websites or platforms, use multichannel sync platforms to synchronize your inventory so that they don’t drop to zero. But if your only marketplace is Amazon, utilize standalone stock management platforms.
Again, make sure you are always on top of your inventory to avoid future deficits.
Practice VIII: Product’s Backend Search Keywords
Although the backend keywords are hidden to customers, Amazon’s A9 algorithm indexes them, so it pays to optimize for these as well. Here are the things you should incorporate in your backend:
- Key terms you were not able to place in your description or title
- A product’s misspellings or related keywords and phrases including synonyms
- Translation of your product’s words into Spanish or French or other major languages, depending on where you are
Again, refrain from keyword stuffing.
Practice IX: Product Reviews and Ratings
Amazon considers a product’s ratings and reviews as critical factors for ranking high on the first page. That, therefore, influences the click-through rates and conversions, whereas the more positive reviews, the better value of the product.
Practice X: Utilize FBA for your Product
Although a Professional Seller Account charges you $39.99 per month, it’s still a more viable option, especially in the long run, as it exempts you from rendering a $1 fee per item.
Good thing, there are a lot of FBA courses you can avail of for free online. But for more advanced tutorials, you would have to buy the courses.
By utilizing FBA, you’ll not only have better visibility on the Amazon search results but also helps you nail the “Buy Box.”
Properly optimizing your product’s listing will significantly improve its desirability and discoverability. That, in turn, leads to more conversions and sales. The process, however, does not end there. Make sure that you are updated on all the SEO trends, algorithm changes, and ongoing optimization improvements to remain at the top of your niche.
Patrick Panuncillon is an Amazon digital specialist who has been helping sellers improve their rankings for higher conversion and sales. He also loves to dabble on the latest Amazon tools and software, such as the Amazon Repricer.