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Let’s face it. With conversions going for pennies, more high-volume, low-funnel traffic than you’ll find anywhere else, and built-in sales attribution that eliminates any need to set up goals or place conversion pixels, Amazon’s paid search campaigns are a no-brainer. Why else would every top brand be shifting ad budgets from Google to Amazon?

Unfortunately, though, while AMS campaigns can be very effective, understanding how and why they’re effective is a little more challenging. Amazon’s not exactly known for being generous with their data, and that’s no different with AMS, so setting up your campaigns to effectively acquire data is crucial for learning, optimization, and success in the long term.

Segment Everything. Yes, you heard that right. Everything.

Few things can be more frustrating than setting up a campaign in which you’re advertising multiple products and realizing only after a few weeks of robust performance that you can’t exactly tell which search terms are driving sales on which products. Did search term A drive all those sales on Product B? Or was it product C? Even with the recent revamp of their ad reports, you’re still limited to viewing either product level performance OR search term level performance, which is why it’s so important to advertise only one product per campaign. Otherwise, you’ll never know exactly which search terms are working with which products, and which ones aren’t.

Beyond that, much like any other paid search platform, if you’re bidding on multiple feature-based terms, segmenting terms thematically by the campaign will ultimately accelerate analysis and aid in identifying trends in spend and search volume. If you’re really feeling adventurous, go ahead and segment your campaigns by match type as well, which can aid in the bid and budget management (and sometimes lead to three times the campaigns).

Mind Your Match Types

While leveraging multiple match types in Sponsored Product campaigns can be an effective way to funnel traffic, Headline Search campaigns call for a more restrictive approach. Although broad match terms may match to some very high-converting long tail searches, the lack of search term reports for Headline Search campaigns means you’ll never know what those high-converting long tail searches are, so you’ll never be able to turn those to your advantage. Instead, stick with a phrase and exact match in your Headline Search campaigns so that you can at least control word order, then test ad copy against terms and adjust. Meanwhile, use the Sponsored Product search term reports to further inform your Headline Search keyword strategy, adding high-converting, long tail terms to your Headline Search campaigns. Just don’t use a broad match!

Be Sure to Uncheck that Box!

Product Display ads can be targeted either to serve on specific product pages or else serve to interest-based audiences. They’re a fantastic way to advertise on complementary product pages or intrude on your competition’s space, but it’s important to be very careful about taking Amazon’s “recommendation” of expanding targeting to other closely related products when setting these campaigns up.

Part of the problem here is that the box is checked by default, and the reporting for these campaigns is so limited, that if you do happen to leave the box checked, you’ll have no way of knowing which product detail page your ad served on when it drove a sale, so again we return to our theme of being unable to tell what is and is not working.

Moreover, one of the strengths of PDAs is the freedom to customize ad copy and speak very specifically to the messaging on those targeted product pages, so if your ads are serving on pages you’re unaware of, the relevancy of your ad copy will simply be lost. As for interest targeting, just as above, limit the interests to one per campaign, otherwise, you’ll have no way of knowing which interests are wasting your ad spend and which interests are providing a strong return.

Need an extra set of eyes on your AMS campaigns, having trouble figuring out where to start, or looking for more information? Register today for our upcoming webinar on Advanced Amazon Advertising Strategies to Maximize ROI.  Get in touch with the experts at Marketplace Strategy today!


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