Amazon Listing Optimisation: A Guide to Boosting Product Visibility

Amazon’s sales have been rising for years but, between 2020 and 2021, they increased a massive 44%! In light of this explosive growth, Amazon listing optimisation has become more important than ever before.

Luckily, plenty of tried and tested techniques will make your listings more visible to shoppers. Ultimately, this will lead to more clicks and sales on Amazon too. Here’s what you need to know.

Why you need to optimise your Amazon listings

Recent research suggests that 49% of consumers in the US start their online shopping on Amazon. Another study indicates that 70% of shoppers never go beyond the first page of Amazon’s search results.

Put these two stats together and it’s clear that getting an Amazon product listing to the top of the search results has the potential to be very, very lucrative!

Unfortunately, you don’t have control over how your product listing will rank. However, you can improve your chances of appearing on top with some basic Amazon listing optimisation know-how.

Understanding Amazon’s SEO algorithm

Amazon’s unique, in-house algorithm decides which listings appear in search results – and in what order.

Although Amazon isn’t open about how its algorithm works, we know that it aims to maximise sales and make customers happy. It does this by ranking highly relevant product listings that are owned by reliable sellers.

That’s why Amazon’s rankings and recommendations are based on:

  • Search query relevance: Amazon tries to please shoppers and drive sales by presenting them with products that closely match the phrase they typed into the search bar. To do this, it analyses the keywords of each product listing.
  • Seller performance: Amazon wants customers to come back again and again. So it prioritises listings run by sellers with stellar performance metrics, such as high ratings and low cancellation rates.
  • Sales history and conversion rate: Amazon ranks product listings that have converted customers in the past. This means sales lead to more sales. Image quality, shipping speed and reviews can all make an impact here.
  • Pricing: While a bargain-basement price tag is no substitute for great performance metrics, Amazon knows low prices can please customers and increase their chances of converting.

Amazon’s algorithm also considers product availability. If you’ve run out of stock, your listing won’t appear in the results at all. It also seems to favour FBA sellers.

After its most recent update in 2021, listings with lots of external traffic rank better too.

How to optimise an Amazon listing

While visibility largely relies on your overall performance, there are plenty of things you can do to make an individual Amazon product listing rank highly.

Here are some optimisation tips for improving conversion rates, search query relevance and sales performance.

1. Optimise your Amazon product page description

To maximise conversions, you need to fill your Amazon product page with useful details. Online shoppers can’t examine your products, so you need to make up for this by providing them with all the information they need to convert.

Lay out the specifications of your products in a clear and concise format. Include brand names, colours, sizes, materials, key features, quantities and any other helpful details that your audience might like to know. This will also help your product listing appear when shoppers search for specific product characteristics.

If you’re a member of the Amazon Brand Registry, you should use premium A+ Content in every product listing. This lets you enhance your Amazon product page with eye-catching layouts, images and videos. This feature isn’t available to most sellers so it will give your listings an edge. In fact, according to Amazon, premium content usually increases conversions by 5%.

2. Focus on keywords

Use a keyword tool to find out what phrases people type when they search for your products. You can then include them throughout your Amazon product page.

Ideally, you want to use long-tail keywords with hefty search volumes. But only choose ones that are relevant to your product. Otherwise, your product listing will attract irrelevant shoppers and its conversion rate will fall.

If you get the balance right, it tells Amazon’s algorithm that you have exactly what the customer is looking for. This should boost your position in suitable search results.

Here are some more specific tips on how to optimise an Amazon listing with keywords:

  • Title: Include your main keyword in the title, but try to keep it concise, informative and appealing too. Your product listing title can boost visibility, but it also needs to attract the attention of shoppers.
  • Search terms field: Here, you can add extra keywords to your Amazon listing that shoppers can’t see. This helps Amazon’s algorithm understand your product listing without hurting its UX. List short, generic, relevant keywords, including synonyms, spelling variations, abbreviations and alternative names.

3. Carefully choose product images

The conversion rate of your Amazon product page is hugely influenced by the photos you use. They educate shoppers and convey heaps of information in just a few seconds, so use them to highlight key features and selling points.

Add a selection of high-quality images to your listings. Include shots from different angles, on-brand lifestyle photos, close-ups and images with helpful text. You can upload product videos as well.

It’s also worth noting that the image titles matter too. Include descriptive keywords in the file name as this may influence how Amazon ranks your listing.

4. Boost reviews and ratings

Amazon’s algorithm places a lot of importance on the quality and quantity of your customer feedback. But, then again, so do shoppers! Having lots of positive reviews on Amazon is hugely beneficial for your brand. So how can you get more of them?

Well, you can start by providing exceptional customer service and great quality products. You can also request customer reviews. However, be careful not to break any rules in the process.

A few years ago, Amazon banned incentivised reviews and introduced some strict guidelines. As a result, you can no longer ask specifically for a positive review.

However, you can use Amazon’s ‘Request a Review’ button to contact customers in a compliant way. You can also ask social media followers to share their feedback or, if you fill your own orders, you can print out a request and add it to packages.

5. Advertise new listings

Because a proven track record can boost rankings, you may want to kickstart each Amazon listing with some sponsored ads. While this requires some investment, it will take your Amazon listing optimisation to the next level.

Advertising allows brands to build up sales, attract reviews and develop their conversion rate. All of these things show Amazon that a product listing is trustworthy. Without them, reaching page one of the organic search results will be tough.

Although costs are on the rise, Amazon’s own retail media platform is probably the best way to advertise a new listing.

6. Direct external traffic to your listings

Earlier this year, Amazon tweaked its algorithm to prioritise listings that attract external traffic. So direct shoppers to your Amazon product listings through social media, blog posts, email or your own website. This should improve your visibility in Amazon’s search results.

Even if you prefer to send customers directly to your own store, sometimes it makes sense to share an Amazon listing. You can use ‘Where to Buy’ technology to highlight stockists and give website visitors more buying options. This can improve the user experience, while also contributing to your visibility on Amazon.

In the run-up to Amazo’s famous Prime Day, it may also be wise to send out an email blast alerting customers to your special offers. Alternatively, you could find ways to encourage members of Amazon’s affiliate programme to promote your products. This is a relatively new aspect of Amazon listing optimisation so think outside the box.

Final thoughts

Remember, Amazon wants to maximise sales and it does this by putting customers first.

To win over Amazon’s algorithm, you need to win over its shoppers. Keep this in mind as you craft product pages, upload images and arrange customer support. It will improve your visibility, as well as your bottom line.

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