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Beginners guide to Amazon PPC

Amazon PPC advertising has become a powerful marketing tool for many businesses. If you want to drive more sales for your product – you can run ads to appear at the top of Amazon search results and reach out to your target customer when they search. Having your ad displayed on page one is just one of the ways you can place your product in front of users who are likely to make a purchase.

Amazon is product-based, which makes it a great platform to drive sales – however, as its landscape continues to grow, so does the competition. With more sellers adding Amazon PPC to their paid marketing strategy, you’ll need to ensure you have a solid understanding of how it all works.

We’ve created this guide to take you through the different types of campaigns you can create, and how you can use Amazon PPC to improve your overall digital marketing performance.

What is Amazon PPC?

If you already know what PPC marketing is, then it’s likely you’ll understand a bit about Amazon advertising already. You’ll only pay a fee when a user clicks on your ad – plus, you can control how much you are paying per click.

The type of ad you use will depend on your target audience, your industry and your business goals. Amazon offers three types of ad formats; we’ve outlined these below.

Sponsored Products 

You can promote individual products on Amazon when a user does a search. You will display your product ads based on how well a user query matches your keywords. Your ads can appear above, alongside or even within search results or on product pages. They can appear for both desktop and mobile users, so it is important to optimise for both. The main benefits of this ad format are:

  • Budget control – Ads work on a cost per click (CPC) basis, so you only pay a set amount when somebody clicks. You can decide how much you pay per click depending on your marketing budget.
  • Increased sales – You will be reaching out to people who are searching specifically for what you are selling – meaning it’s likely they will visit your product page and convert.

To set up Sponsored Product ads, you simply choose which products you want to promote, choose your keywords and set a budget for your clicks, and then let Amazon target your ads depending on a customer match.

Sponsored Brands

These were previously known as Headline Search Ads. They are keyword-targeted ads that allow you to provide a custom headline, brand logo and up to three products. You can link to your site or a landing page on Amazon. As suggested in the name, sponsored brand ads are primarily used to drive brand awareness but can be used to meet different goals. The main pros are:

  • Reach users with high intent – Sponsored brand ads will reach customers when they’re looking to purchase – meaning it’s a great opportunity to advertise the benefits of your product.
  • Awareness – You can use custom messaging to tell your brand story and drive discovery of your brand.

Product Display Ads

Product or sponsored display ads are a newer form of Amazon PPC advertising. You can carefully target users based on their interests and the type of products they are likely to want. This works by gathering data on their online search and shopping behaviour and applying it to your campaign. You can send users directly to your product page once they click because they are likely to be ready to make a purchase. The main benefits include:

  • Saving time – With display ads, you can promote multiple products in one ad through an online product catalogue.
  • Meet objectives – Display ads are customisable and can help both small and larger businesses meet their unique goals – whether its product awareness or increasing conversion rates etc.

Manual vs Automatic campaigns

In an automatic campaign, Amazon will essentially decide which adds should run depending on how well matched they are to a specific search term. This can mean you have less control over what type of customer searches are leading to your product – however, you’ll also be saving time when it comes to setting your campaign up. The main benefits include:

  • You don’t need to spend time finding which keywords are best for your campaign.
  • Your campaign will include experiments by Amazon.
  • Your ad may appear for long-tail keywords you wouldn’t have manually entered – meaning you can find new customers.
  • Amazon can collect data for you to apply to your future PPC campaigns.

When it comes to a manual campaign, the main benefits include:

  • More precise targeting and reaching customers based on the keywords you choose.
  • You can easily reduce bids or pause any lower performing keywords throughout your campaign.
  • You can test keywords within a manual campaign and work towards increasing your sales.

You don’t have to choose one campaign type when it comes to Amazon PPC, instead, you can run both campaigns and benefit from their different features. Save time and allow Amazon to target your ads based on your product – but also have control over your own keywords.

How to create an automatic PPC campaign?

As suggested in the name, automatic campaigns won’t take long to create. You’ll need to provide Amazon with a campaign name and start date, along with your PPC budget. Once you’ve done this, Amazon will decide on the suitable keywords and match types depending on your product information.

If you’re new to Amazon PPC, we suggest starting out with an automatic campaign and letting it run for a few weeks. Once you start generating results, you can use data provided by Amazon to discover which keywords are working and which ones are under-performing. Going forward, you can use this information to improve your manual campaigns and using more precise targeting.

How to start a manual PPC campaign?

When setting up a manual campaign, you’ll be uploading your own list of keywords. We suggest using a PPC keyword research tool (we’ve listed our top 7 here). Manual campaigns allow you to control the type of words you’re bidding on – i.e. broad match, phrase match or exact match.

Keyword bidding

Any successful PPC campaign will require keyword knowledge – so, we’ve summarised the different match types you can use:

  • Broad Match – With broad match, your ad may appear for queries that are related to your keyword. You can still appear if the order of keywords has changed or if there are any additional terms added (this can include misspellings and synonyms).
  • Phrase Match – If you use phrase match, your ad will only display when a user searches for your full phrase, in the same order. As long as your phrase is in the correct order then your ad can appear – this means there can be additional words before or after your phrase.
  • Exact Match – With exact keywords, you can narrow down to the customers who are searching specifically for your product. Exact match targeting allows only your exact keyword (plus plurals, singulars, and misspellings) to trigger your ad.

Get in Touch

If you have any questions about Amazon PPC or you’re looking for a new way to get ahead of the digital marketing game, please get in touch.  

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