5 Amazon PPC Optimization Tips During COVID-19

February 19, 2021
Written by Nicasio Co III
amazon ppc optimization

The coronavirus pandemic put the lives of many in limbo and crippled businesses worldwide. It also caused a significant impact in several industries, including e-commerce or online selling. The invisible yet deadly enemy made some Amazon sellers question how they will handle their business and day-to-day tasks, particularly Amazon PPC optimization.

Who would waste their time looking at ads at this time of crisis? Is it worth it to spend money on an Amazon PPC campaign despite the unstable and beaten economy? Let us find out in this article, shall we?

Why should you continue your Amazon PPC optimization?

It would be an understatement to say that COVID-19 pushed Amazon sellers out of their comfort zones. To the point that several brands are scared to create Amazon sponsored products PPC ads or improve the rankings of their products. However, it would be more beneficial to run sponsored ads and continue doing Amazon PPC optimization to create some noise in the marketplace despite the current situation.

This is the purpose of ads. Advertisements are a way of saying to customers: "Hey, we are still here! Business as usual." Thus, launching Amazon PPC campaigns are needed more than ever. And it would be better to optimize your product listings and PPC ads to attract more customers and maintain seller performance metrics' health. 

Don't also forget that all Amazon sellers are affected, including the competition. This is due to the current logistical problems that the supply chain is experiencing. Nevertheless, it would be a perfect opportunity to improve product reviews and product rankings to beat the competition. Fortunately, bids are adjustable, and they can be tweaked automatically to avoid wasting money. 

Moreover, and the stay-at-home policies due to the pandemic encouraged consumers to buy their goods online. Nielsen acknowledges this as a ”catalyst moment” since COVID-19 has increased the usage of technology-based solutions to help them with their daily tasks like online shopping. People became wary of catching the disease, so they have no choice but to purchase products over the internet instead of visiting their local store.

Amazon trends during the coronavirus pandemic

It is now clear that Amazon PPC optimization should not be taken for granted based on the reasons given above. But before taking action to improve Amazon PPC campaigns, it is crucial to be updated in the latest trends in Amazon to have a better understanding of the current market situation amid the pandemic. 

Rise of the "quarantine economy"

COVID-19 gave birth to a new and peculiar industry, which is called the "quarantine economy." Since the lethal virus is contagious, it drove many people to self-isolate for an indefinite period to distance themselves from others. For this reason, there is no choice but to adopt a work-from-home setup for the time being. 

This is the new normal, or the quarantine economy, where almost everyone was required to work from home to prevent the spread of the virus. Hence, it also gave Amazon sellers a chance to increase their sales because people still need to buy their needs online. Consumer behavior is changing for those who have accepted to live with coronavirus's reality and they instead prefer to shop from safe sources during the pandemic.

Products with extraordinary high search volumes

There is no doubt that essential goods are the most in-demand orders in this pandemic. But according to a Forbes article, consumers also searched for the following products since the start of March 2020:

  • bidet
  • LED strip lights
  • sidewalk chalk
  • yeast for bread
  • elastic bands for sewing
  • aloe vera gel
  • paint by numbers for adults
  • jigsaw puzzles 1000 pieces for adults
  • puzzles for adults

It seems people are finding ways to keep themselves entertained, if we base it on the last three items on the list. It means there is a high demand for items in the toys and hobbies categories from those who want to fight the effects of isolation, such as boredom and loneliness.

On the other hand, luxury goods like jewelry and electronic items hit an all-time low because more consumers have focused on buying necessities. Plus, the fact that most businesses have shut down means that there has been an increase in unemployment. Those who had suffered the blow would be willing to let go of material things to survive.

Six threshold levels of consumer behavior

Humans have this "flight or fight" response whenever they encounter a threatening or dangerous situation. Based on Nielsen Six Consumer Behavior Thresholds of COVID-19 Concern, it looks like people adapt well whenever the government issues public health announcements and press conferences to curb cases of coronavirus, as shown below:

  Source: Nielsen

Amazon sellers may use this information to get the market's pulse and help them decide which products sell the most based on each COVID-19 event marker.

Sellers should take note of these trends because it could help them make informed decisions on how to continue selling on Amazon.

5 Tips to optimize Amazon PPC amid COVID-19

Here are some ways to improve Amazon PPC optimization to keep a business afloat in this pandemic:

Always monitor the marketplace

Sellers need to be more proactive to outwit the competition. Regularly check which products are selling and shipping out faster. Also, monitor how other sellers are delivering their products. Is it through Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) or did they switch to Fulfillment by Merchant (FBM) for the meantime, due to Amazon's erratic policy changes? One of the recent changes was when Amazon altered its "Buy Box" product search algorithm to prioritize items that can be delivered via FBM or SFP (Seller Fulfilled Prime) program since the e-commerce giant has been experiencing a high volume of deliveries.

Adjust bids based on market demand

Products from high-demand categories should have their own Amazon PPC campaign, and sellers should ensure that the listings are optimized to beat the competition. Conversely, if there is a  low demand for a product, lower the bid or pause the campaign when the sales are very low.

Maintain communication with customers

Who would ignore or disregard the very source of income, a.k.a. the customers? Amazon sellers should address customers' concerns with empathy during these difficult times. Since more people are online, sellers must be diligent in creating Amazon sponsored products PPC ads or enhance advertising initiatives to maintain brand awareness. Moreover, avoid insensitive  social media posts when trying to market products during the pandemic. Amazon also prohibits the use of keywords related to protective equipment or COVID-19.

Manage the advertising cost of sales (ACoS)

ACoS is a metric that gauges how an Amazon PPC campaign performs, and it should be maintained to remain as low as possible. The recommended strategy for sponsored products is to use "dynamic bids - up and down" or "dynamic bids - down only" during this pandemic. It would also help to utilize negative keyword targeting with sponsored brands and sponsored products to eliminate product listings that don't boost sales or clicks.

Plan and prepare for Q4

It is better late than never, or sellers will lose the golden opportunity of ramping up the marketing efforts and increasing the revenue during the holiday season or Q4. People are busy preparing gifts, cooking meals, baking goodies, and decorating homes during this period. Try offering products related to these. As mentioned above, toys and hobbies are the hottest categories right now, so why not invest in those? Shift to products that are mainly used indoors and are badly needed by customers.

In closing

Nobody was prepared for the coronavirus pandemic. Almost all businesses are struggling to survive and adapt, including Amazon sellers. However, it isn't the time to panic and abruptly pause Amazon PPC campaigns. Amazon PPC optimization is needed more than ever to keep up with the competition and improve the visibility of the product listings. Sellers should be up-to-date with the latest trends on Amazon, to avoid being left behind. Follow the tips above to have converting sponsored ads that can withstand any crisis.
Seller Interactive has a team of experienced Amazon experts willing to help you with Amazon PPC optimization, which is customized based on your business needs and preferences. Please email us at [email protected] or [email protected] today.

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