The Seller Abroad

Using FBA to sell on Amazon from abroad… can't be that hard!

Tag: Amazon sponsored Ads

Is Your Amazon Sponsored Ad Campaign Profitable?

Assessing your Amazon Sponsored Ad Campaign

In this post I’m going to address how to determine if your Amazon sponsored ad campaign is working. Is it a worthy investment? This is a short but very important post for maintaining good profitability. At the end of the day, it’s all about the money money money…. You get what I mean!

Okay so now you’ve been selling for a few weeks and your product has slowly worked its way up in page count for your desired keyword’s search results. This is fantastic news because now more and more eyes are getting to your listing organically, without any paid advertising. So when is it okay to stop using the Amazon sponsored ad campaign? After all, these ads have drastically increased your page views. In my case, even once my product reached page 1 for my desired keyword, the sponsored ads increased eyes on my listing by about 150%. That is huge right… well that depends.

Testing The Amazon Sponsored Ad Campaign

See, In my case I noticed that I was spending a lot of money on sponsored ads with the cost accounting for about 21% of my sales (Refer to the ACoS figure on your ad campaign page). This was a big deal for me. It meant that this large chunk came straight out of my margin on each product. For a niche product, this basically cuts your margin in half… or more. In light of this, I decided to experiment with the ad campaign by narrowing down on key words that worked and did not work in generating sales. I slowly dropped unsuccessful key words based on the number of sales it resulted in. To find this statistic,

  • click into your sponsored ad campaign,
  • click on your ad group,
  • then click on the keyword tab.

Keep in mind that I dropped keywords off the campaign over a period of a week each, to assess the performance properly. My benchmark was that if the keyword didn’t bring in sales and had an ACoS of over 10%, I would consider dropping it. At the end, it turned out that the only really effective keyword for advertising was my main desired keyword. Now that’s fantastic, only I was already on page 1 of this keyword search results! From here I decided to stop the advertising campaign to see what happened and as expected, sales were hardly touched. I may have lost about 2 or 3 sales a month, but retained profits.

Bottom Line on Amazon Sponsored Ad Campaigns

Amazon sponsored ad campaignIn summary, my advice on this one is that it is not worth advertising for any keyword with a ACoS over about 10%. More importantly, it is not worth advertising for keywords for which you already rank on the first page, as you will most likely get that customer viewing your listing without the ad anyway. So why pay for the view instead of getting it for free? Don’t answer that… it’s a rhetorical question! This analysis of your ad campaign can be super effective as you will get rid of your unprofitable sales. Now keep in mind that I do not recommend doing this until you’ve been selling consistently for about 2 months. The reason being that when you start out, volume of sales is more important that profitability for metrics such as search rankings, BSR and also helps with seller feedback and reviews as well.

Now go forth and multiply…profits that is!

Generating More Sales

Generating More Sales

Let me take you through my learnings and best practices for generating more sales to keep the momentum going.

Now that I had experienced the euphoria of getting my first organic sale and the low of not getting heaps and heaps more, I had to figure out a way to get my listing to make more sales. The issue was that my product listing was on page 4. In order to get consistent sales, I had to get more eyes on my product listing, meaning I had to somehow get myself to page one when my desired key words were searched. As Amazon’s algorithm doesn’t favour new listings as such, this is difficult to do. Don’t worry, there is a way around this, but like all shortcuts, you have to pay for it.

Amazon Sponsored Product Campaign

Amazon allows you to use a pay-per-click service to get your listing front and centre when someone searches for related key words. This service is called Amazon Sponsored Product Campaign. This is a great way to get more eyes on your listing. More eyes = more sales = more reviews. More sales and more reviews = ranking higher for your desired key words. As this is a paid service, you have to be prepared to invest. I’d advise that you take this step after you’ve got about 10 reviews plus. To start off with, I recommend letting Amazon automatically pick the key words based on your product. You can do this by picking “Automatic Targeting” when creating the campaign. Amazon will come up with a large number of key words that match your product listing and advertise on search results for those key words. You will have to set up your maximum bid per click. $0.75 is a typical bid. You might have to bid higher if you are in a more competitive market. You won’t pay that amount each time, however you can bid up to that limit to outbid other advertisers. You also have to set your maximum daily budget. I initially left this at $20. You can vary this as you go depending on results, however $20 is a good starting figure. Again, this is the limit of your daily spend so you usually will not spend that much every day.

Amazon sponsored Ads is a great way to get your product sales rolling. I’ll touch more on optimising your sponsored product Ads in another post down the track. Once you’ve set up your initial Ad campaign, wait a week before you start analysing your results as things have a delayed effect. If you are going to check it every day as I did, be prepared for an emotional roller-coaster ride!

Super URL

Another neat trick/hack to help you rank higher on searches is to use a particular type of URL link for all your marketing. Say for example, if you were to send a link to a reviewer to access your product, you’d want to use this particular type of URL. I hear it referred to as Super URL a lot. The premise of this URL is that it makes Amazon think that the person clicking on the link has manually searched for your suggested key word and found your product. This in turn feeds the Amazon algorithm, the logic being that people searching the key words chose to buy your product over the hundreds of others, so it should rank higher for that key word search. Makes sense right… Now to setting up this so called “Super URL”.

Super URL

As mentioned above, the Super URL mimics someone buying your product out of the hundreds that showed up during a key word search. So the trick to this is that the URL has to contain directions that show the key search terms. A simple way to set up a Super URL is to use the following format: http://www.amazon.com/dp/[Insert ASIN Here]/keywords=[Insert key words in format “totally+awesome+product”] where you fill in the red text with your product ASIN (found on your product listing page) and your key words using the “+” sign instead of spaces. So finally it should look something like this: http://www.amazon.com/dp/BIWK9846D/keywords=totally+awesome+product. Now to what extent a Super URL works is hard to judge, however it does help. While this simple method works well, for best results, it is worth doing what I did and use a service such as AMZ Tracker which provide Super URLs with time stamps on it (a bunch of letters and numbers that indicate the time at which the link was clicked). This is hard to do manually as the time stamp constantly changes with time, however it does provide more comprehensive information to the Amazon algorithm. The assumption is that the more natural and comprehensive the information you feed the algorithm, the better it works for you. AMZ Tracker also shortens your Super URL so that the link doesn’t look so messy and long. You can check out AMZ Tracker here if you are interested.

Now sit back and relax for a week or so while the system turns over. Hope the results work out as well for you as it did for me with this approach. Don’t forget to celebrate the little wins!

 

Post Highlights for generating more sales

  • Use Amazon sponsored Ad campaign (Pay Per Click Service)
  • Set up a Super URL using AMZ Tracker or another similar service
  • Be patient… you may have to wait a week before you see the results you are hoping for
  • Once the sales start coming in, celebrate the win!

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