Amazon SEO in 2020: A Comprehensive Guide

September 17, 2020
Written by Jayce Broda

Every time we look back on Amazon’s launch of the Marketplace in 2000, we’re amazed at the number of people it helped grow into full-fledged eCommerce entrepreneurs. From stay-at-home parents with small businesses to household names that consumers have come to know and love, Amazon has undoubtedly been a catalyst for eCommerce's success. With the growth of Amazon SEO as an effective advertising engine to reach customers, the Marketplace now boasts a whopping 2.5 million sellers on the platform.  

While there is no doubt that Amazon is a money-making platform that salespeople cannot overlook, the level of competition now is off the charts. Entrepreneurs need to go the extra mile and hope they remain ahead of their competitors by employing the best possible Amazon product SEO strategies.

Most people think a comprehensive Amazon SEO  Guide is impossible to teach in one article. After all, search engine optimization is a tricky game to play mostly in a competitive eCommerce environment. This article serves as a hands-on tutorial on how the Amazon search engine functions within the platform and how you can formulate a sound Amazon SEO strategy for your business.  

In essence, we will cover the following points of discussion:

Part 1: AMAZON SEO BASICS

Part 2: AMAZON SEO STRATEGY 101

The Amazon SEO Ecosystem and How it Functions Within the Platform 

What is Amazon SEO

Most new sellers always ask, “What is Amazon SEO?” By definition, Amazon SEO optimization is the process of improving the overall quality of an Amazon webpage to increase its visibility and drive substantial traffic on the platform. Through Amazon’s A9 Search Engine, businesses are allowed to rank high and sell more products. Amazon A9 can be a powerful tool to bend to your will and be a step ahead of other businesses, but only if you use it strategically. 

Most new entrepreneurs compare Amazon marketing tools to Google’s, with some saying that Google search engines are still more efficient than what Amazon currently uses. This, of course, is false. A 2016 survey by Bloomreach concluded that 55% of consumers spend more time looking for products on Amazon than Google— a clear indication that Amazon has grown into an eCommerce platform and a go-to search engine in one.

Entrepreneurs who understand how Amazon’s SEO process works will yield significant results. Their products will rise to the top of the Marketplace’s search results and ultimately sell to customers more. To achieve this success, let’s look at how Amazon SEO’s foundational tool, the A9 search engine, functions. 

Amazon’s A9 Search Engine: What Is It?

Source: universoamazon.es

The A9 search engine is an essential part of the Amazon SEO process. 

A9.com, a subsidiary of Amazon based in Palo Alto, California, developed its search engine technology to help customer search queries match the most appropriate products on the Amazon platform. The A9 search engine is considered by all sellers to be the brains behind the entire SEO process, and as such, it is crucial to understand how the A9 algorithm works.

The A9 search engine’s cognition is highly focused on its “revenue per-click” abilities, which is Amazon’s ultimate goal. Every time a customer searches for a product on the platform, he/she needs to match with the best possible options on the Amazon catalog— thus increasing the likelihood of producing sales and revenue.  

Now that you have an idea of how Amazon’s foundational technology works, it’s time to know how the A9 search engine can be your ally to supercharge your product rankings on the platform.

 Ranking Factors for Amazon SEO

Understanding The Two Essential Ranking Factors on the Amazon Platform

As a new Amazon entrepreneur, it can be overwhelming to think about how your products will rank higher on the Marketplace. You will face fierce competition and a continuously developing A9 search engine algorithm, and it is for this reason that most companies hire an Amazon SEO consultant for help. While there are no exact ways to pinpoint how Amazon A9 targets customer queries and results at the moment, there are hints that can help make your products more noticeable.

After all, the A9 search engine is an intelligent tool that you can utilize to your advantage when matching your products with the right customers. These two ranking factors are classified as follows:

  • Selling high-quality products at a fast pace, and
  • Mastering the art of Amazon keywords.

Factor #1: Sales Velocity

Sales velocity is a metric used by Amazon to reflect how fast a product sells on the Marketplace, and it’s not only to let sellers know how they are performing. The connection of sales velocity with Amazon SEO is relatively straightforward: the more money you generate on the Amazon platform, the higher your rankings will be. If you establish a compelling sales resume for Amazon, it will be more than happy to give you a little special preference.

Apart from establishing an effective SEO strategy, sales velocity can also be reinforced by launching pay-per-click (PPC) advertising campaigns, analyzing product conversion rates, and increasing customer reviews. Some well-connected entrepreneurs also establish a network with other Amazon sellers to collaborate and help each other’s businesses through “referral traffic.”

Determining and increasing sales velocity rates are vital to your success on Amazon. If you want to make some noise and get noticed on the platform, consider investing in these useful techniques.

Factor #2: Keyword Mastery

Amazon keywords are crucial to the entire SEO process. They are Amazon SEO tools that help your eCommerce business connect with your audience on the platform based on what they are looking for. If you fail to use the right keywords, how else will the A9 search engine understand your products and boost it on top of the platform’s search results page? A9 may be a smart piece of technology, but it won’t detect what your product is unless you use the appropriate language to speak to it.

For starters, these are some useful tips to optimize your Amazon keyword usage:

  • Determine and concentrate on your target audience. The first step in choosing the right SEO keywords is to determine who you are trying to reach. Are you in the business of selling fitness supplements? Then try targeting relevant keywords for the fitness market, and refrain from using general keywords like “gym” or “fit” on your webpage.  
  • Include your keywords in product listings. To rank high on Amazon searches, carefully-chosen keywords should be subsequently included in all product listings. Remember, you only need to use a keyword once to rank higher. If you use the same keyword only wasting word space that could have been used on other keywords.
  • Learn how to use backend keywords. Simply put, backend keywords are keywords the customers cannot see on the platform. If you already have a long list of keywords and don’t want to put all of them in your listing, you can instead place them as your back-end keywords. This way, you will be able to rank for other searches and maximize your leads.

Implementing these common strategies can help the A9 search engine know your products better, and subsequently place it higher on the platform to connect you to your customers.

How to Optimize Amazon SEO

Amazon SEO Strategy 101: How to Optimize a Product Listing

By the time you reach this part of the article, you must already have a clear perception of the Amazon SEO process, its primary functions, and its overall impact on your eCommerce business. As mentioned, the secret ingredients to achieving success on the platform are quality and relevance.The best way to get things started is by creating the best possible product listing on your webpage.

An optimized product listing results in increased click-thru rates (the number of people who click on your listings) and conversion rates (the number of people who purchase your products). To achieve this, you need to be able to create a fine sales copy, take high-quality product photos, and launch an exquisite PPC campaign. 

We will have a comprehensive look at each strategy and lay down the details on how you can maximize your listing capabilities.

Source: Amazon Seller Central

Lesson #1. Writing a Killer Amazon Sales Copy

A killer sales copy is a copy that persuades, no doubt about it. On other platforms, sales copies can be ineffective for consumption since customers tend to dislike salesy language. On the Amazon Marketplace, it’s a different story. Your target audience is ready to buy products in real-time, so a well-written sales copy can make the difference between you and your competitors.  

Typically, an optimized sales copy should include the following key elements:

1.1. Product Title

As the first piece of text your customers will read on your product listing, the product title should be straightforward and contain the most crucial information about your item. Amazon Seller Central uploaded Style Guides to help sellers structure their titles better, and a well-crafted title normally provides the product’s unique characteristics and benefits.

While product titles highly depend on what type of product is being sold, entrepreneurs generally include the following details: 

  • Brand 
  • Model type and number 
  • Product type
  • Size and quantity
  • Power output requirements 
  • Color 
  • Design
  • Trademarks or patents (if necessary) 

It’s important to note that each product type has a corresponding Amazon title formula, so you cannot randomly mix these details on your title. For instance, Amazon suggests the following templates for these popular product types:  

  • Kitchenware: Brand + Model Name + Model Number + Size + Product Type
  • TV Sets: Brand + Model Name + Product Type + Color
  • DVD Players: Brand + Model Name + Size + Product Type + Screen Type
  • Jewelry: Brand + Product Category + Sex + Metal Variation + Shape + Material + Product Type
  • Video Games: Brand + Product Type + Type of Platform

By optimizing your product title, you will immediately catch your customers’ attention and increase your business's likelihood of producing sales.

1.2. Product Description 

Since Amazon is an entirely online platform, the only way that entrepreneurs can make a sales pitch to customers is through a clear product description. Think of it as an opportunity to persuade the customers with the right words in time for their purchasing decision. Below are some of our Amazon SEO tips on how you can optimize this part of your product listing:

  • Do not rewrite. A well-crafted product description does not merely mimic what was written in the product title, but expands on its details and makes the benefits a focal point of the text. 
  • Tell a story. If you want to take it to another level, feel free to tell a story of how exactly the products came into existence. It is a real-life testimonial about the product that presents a unique viewpoint on why people need it in the first place.  
  • Make it readable. Customers on Amazon typically hate reading large chunks of text, so you have to make your product description as concise as possible. We recommend maintaining three lines for each paragraph and separating them using the line break HTML code.
  • Utilize Amazon SEO tools. The product description tab has a set of tools to choose from, including the ability to put bullet points, lists, and bold/italicize/underline texts. Take advantage of these tools to make your descriptions stand out.

Product descriptions provide an avenue for you to talk to your target audience. Why not make the most out of them?

1.3. Bullet points

Bullet points are yet another way to make a compelling case to your target audience that they should purchase your product. As a matter of fact, most Amazon customers prefer reading concise bullet points over lengthy descriptions. So it shouldn’t come as a surprise that they contribute positively to a business’ increase in conversion rates. 

We have compiled a summarized list on what you can do to write bullet points that convert:

  • Outline. It’s your job as an entrepreneur to make sure bullet points are written differently from your title and description. Instead of being straightforward or telling a story, make a clear outline of the product’s best attributes.
  • Focus on one benefit per bullet point. An excellent way to entice your audience is to write an individual advantage per bullet. For example, instead of writing “Easy to use, high-quality” in one bullet, you can separate them into two for better readability.
  • Be aware of the limits. Amazon product listings have a limit of 200 characters per bullet point, so make sure your highlights are compact but still loaded with important information.

Every time a product listing has a formally-structured and compelling set of bullet points, it will always have the upper hand against other listings on the platform.

How to take Amazon SEO Photos

Lesson #2. Taking High-Quality Product Photos

High-quality product photos are valuable visual information that Amazon entrepreneurs can provide for their customers since people are naturally drawn to visual imagery more than other types of content. Despite this seemingly obvious fact, a vast majority of sellers on the platform still fail to realize just how vital product photography is in achieving favorable results. 

Good product photography doesn’t only mean taking photos of your Amazon items. It utilizes specific techniques to showcase your products and make a statement to your audience. 

To achieve this, you need to follow these essential tips:

2.1. Take high-resolution images and find the right lighting. 

Before you start taking your product photos, consider investing in a high-resolution camera for optimal image quality. Your most crucial goal with product photography is to ensure each product will be displayed in its best visual condition. Avoid taking blurry or low-quality photos, or you might end up losing customers. 

Another important factor is adequate lighting on your product. Most high-quality photos either have a natural light backdrop (with generally soft tones) or artificial lighting, with reflectors and lightboxes. While the appropriate lighting depends on what products you have, your end goal should always be to make your products look better for your audience.

2.2. Use a white background. 

Most product photos on the Amazon platform are taken with a white background for a self-explanatory reason. It eliminates all possible distractions and allows the camera to zero in on the product completely. A white background can also give your product listing added professionalism, which is beneficial since Amazon customers prefer visually credible photos as their primary option.

However, it is also important to note that not all products look well with a white background. As stated in the previous section, some items are more aesthetically pleasing with a naturally lit backdrop. Experiment with your product photos and change your environment until you get the best outcome.

2.3. Take photos from multiple angles.

As an Amazon entrepreneur, it is your responsibility to take your customers by the hand and give them a visual tour of your product. Think of yourself as a museum tour guide. Since your audience will not be able to physically see or touch the product, an alternative trick to convince them is by taking photos from multiple angles.

These photos should showcase a combination of your product’s exterior and interior look. For instance, if you’re selling sports apparel on the Amazon Marketplace, try taking photos of your products from afar, up close (to display the material used), and when worn. 

 the right background, and showcase the product from different angles.

The most successful Amazon entrepreneurs understand that product photography is essential to master how to do SEO for Amazon products. While there are multiple ways to take product photos properly, an excellent way to start optimizing your listing is to take high-quality resolution

Amazon SEO Mistakes

Lesson #3. The Most Common Amazon SEO Mistakes

As we near the completion of this Amazon SEO Guide, you are now equipped with the knowledge necessary to analyze the A9 search engine and optimize your product listing. 

However, you should also know that businesses tend to overlook other parts of the Amazon process. They seem insignificant at first glance, but they eventually cause a negative ripple effect on an Amazon business’ sales performance. 

Below are some of the most common mistakes that Amazon entrepreneurs make with their SEO strategy:

  • You are mismanaging your product inventory. The purpose of SEO on Amazon is to increase your brand’s exposure on the platform so people can buy your products, but it will be useless if you fail to streamline your product inventory process. Overstocking or understocking your inventory will equally result in poor customer experience, which is something that you want to avoid.
  • You are failing to sustain your SEO process. Creating the best Amazon strategy is one thing, but maintaining it is an entirely different story. Most Amazon sellers quickly get dethroned because they fail to implement strategies to keep the SEO process efficient. To start, you can either track your performance regularly or consider launching an Amazon PPC campaign to boost your visibility on the Marketplace even further.
  • You are not adjusting to the A9 Search Engine. While Amazon’s A9 search engine is incredibly smart, its algorithm continues to mature over time. Amazon entrepreneurs get frustrated by these adjustments and fail to sustain their SEO strategies. 
  • You are not researching your competitors. Despite Amazon’s fiercely competitive atmosphere, only a few savvy entrepreneurs take the time to research how their competitors are fairing on the platform. This method is especially useful when you try to find loopholes on their product listings and fill those gaps on your web page. If you want to know how to improve SEO on Amazon, competitive research is one way to reinforce your product listing.
  • You are writing inaccurate information. One of the worst mistakes you can make with your SEO strategy is writing false information on your product listings. This devious trick will only harm your business reputation since you try to scam customers on the Amazon platform just to make a profit.
  • You are not getting any help. Most new Amazon sellers think they can miraculously create the best SEO strategy by themselves. Sure, you can try and do everything, but at the expense of other parts of your business.    

A Final Word  

While there is no magic trick to formulate the perfect Amazon SEO strategy, taking the time to learn the SEO process's foundational concepts is already a significant step towards your eCommerce success. We know this SEO masterclass won’t make you an instant Amazon SEO expert overnight, but we hope it can arm you with the knowledge you need to get on the right track. 

Suppose you’re interested in hiring a professional Amazon SEO company to help you with SEO needs. In that case, we at Seller Interactive can help you formulate a specialized SEO strategy for your business. You may schedule a free consultation with us by sending an email at [email protected] or by giving us a call at 1-800-820-3746. Book an appointment today! 

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