Many sellers don’t realize that Amazon is one of the world’s largest search engines.
Because of this, you should think about viewing your product pages as mini-websites. Sellers that optimize their listings on the front and back end to take advantage of Amazon’s A9 Algorithm will see an increase in search rankings.
However, it’s important to note that SEO for Amazon is much different from Google.
According to Amazon SEO expert, Dave Chesson, unlike Google, Amazon’s definition of success isn’t to send traffic to other sites, but to find the product that will provide the best sales conversion. It is because of this fundamental difference between the two search engines that you cannot apply the same tactics for optimizing search.
Although Amazon’s algorithm is continually evolving, the main focus for Amazon has always been on the customer experience, and you can expect to see changes in the algorithm that reflect that as time goes on.
The A9 Algorithm
Unfortunately, there is no blueprint for Amazon’s A9 algorithm. However, through trial and error and experimentation, many sellers have been able to figure out ways they can manipulate their listings on the front and back end to increase their rankings.
Here are five key SEO factors:
Items that are fulfilled by Amazon (FBA) will rank higher in search than items that are fulfilled by merchant (FBM). This is a recent adjustment that Amazon has made to their algorithm in order to ensure a more seamless customer experience.
Amazon’s dedicated Prime customer base, who spend 250% more on average than non-Prime customers, want to see Prime-enabled products at the top of the search page so that they can take advantage of their membership.
Price is naturally a big indicator of conversion rate. If you are selling a pair of shoes for $80, and another seller is selling a very similar pair of shoes with the same amount of reviews, quality images, etc., for $50, the lower priced shoes will probably convert more sales. The higher conversion rate will give it a higher ranking in search.
In order to optimize your product for search, you’ll want to ensure that your product is listed under the most optimal category.
For example, we had a client that had a product incorrectly placed in the clothing category. Through research on the competitive landscape and given the fact that it was a sports-related item, we moved the item to the sporting goods category, in the sub-category of sports and outdoors, in order to improve conversion. This resulted in a 4x increase in sales for the following month.
Reviews are another way to rank higher in search—this includes quality as well as quantity.
The more reviews you have, the more sales you have, which also helps boost your products in the rankings.
Sellers often use review solicitation as a method to increase reviews. Offering your products at a discounted price in exchange for reviews is an effective way to increase your sales rank.
Ultimately, conversion is king. In the world of Amazon SEO, all roads lead to your conversion rate. No matter how optimized your product listing is, it all boils down to how many sales you make.
Conversion is the number one factor for search rankings on Amazon.
On-Page vs. Off-Page Optimization
One way to look at the A9 Algorithm is by breaking it down into two components: on-page and off-page optimization.
On-page optimization is the content that sellers are most familiar with—the product page details that are visible to the customer. These include:
- Bullet points
- Product Description
If you’d like to find out how to optimize each of those individual details on your product page, check out this blog post.
Keywords are an important area of optimization that are often used either incorrectly or forgotten altogether.
Amazon recently came out with new and improved inventory templates that allow up to 1,000 characters for search terms. When entering search terms, avoid entering any punctuation or duplicate language. In order to take advantage of this, you must upload the flat file rather than inputting those terms manually.
Here are some ways you can optimize your listing for search using this data:
- Ensure that your product upload is as complete as possible for your category.
- Utilize all columns and avoid repeating keywords.
- Increase efficiency by uploading parents/children at the same time.
- Ensure that your products are in the correct category to maximize searchability.
- Most categories allow multiple fields to enter keywords within Seller Central. These include:
- Target Audience – For whom is the product intended?
- Subject Matter – What is the product’s subject?
- Other Attributes – What are additional attributes of the product?
- Intended Use – For what activities, events, locations, or conditions is the product intended to be used?
Lastly, if you run Sponsored Products Ads for a particular product, you can use your campaign results to help find the most successful keywords for that ASIN. This can be an extremely effective way to find the right keywords for your product listing.