How does Amazon SEO work & can brands beat it?

The Amazon A9 Algorithm is the name given to Amazon’s search engine. It is a software which determines how products are ranked within search results similar to how Google determines which sites appear 1st in a search. It is a complex and highly secretive system which one could spend years to fully understand. What’s more, it is constantly being updated. Arguably, the algorithm is what makes Amazon’s marketplace what it is today. It takes into account almost every detail of a product listing. Unlike Google’s SEO algorithm, Amazon’s relies heavily on sales conversion and shopping preferences. In other words, since the marketplace is customer focused, as is everything Amazon, their algorithm is ranked by product purchase likelihood.

Why is my Amazon SEO ranking important?

Imagine you are looking for new shoes on Amazon. You type in ‘white trainers’ and see a plethora of listings. How many of them do you click on? Approximately 2 or 3? How far down do you browse the results page? Chances are you scrolled down less than half way before either looking at a specific ASIN or changing your search terms. Now imagine you are selling ‘white trainers’. Your listing is not shown on the 1st page of the search results. As a consumer you didn’t spend the time to check out all options so why expect others to do so? Climbing up the search rankings by understanding how Amazon SEO works is therefore VERY important to your sales.

70% of Amazon shoppers never scroll past the first page of the search results

How do I beat the Amazon’s SEO Algorithm then?

Beating might be the wrong word. If you are selling on Amazon then you have to play by their rules but as the saying goes: ‘If you can’t beat them, join them!’ There are ways to use the A9 Algorithm to your advantage if you have brand registry to take control of your product page. Boosting your ranking will ultimately give you a hand over your competitors. Below are 4 ways you can help your ASINs appear higher on search results. By doing one of these suggestions you might find that you are in fact also optimising another of them as they are all interlinked in boosting sales.

This is perhaps the most important factor for improving your SEO. Make sure your product listing contains keywords browsers are looking for such as colour, size or the brand. Relevancy is a significant part of raising your position inside the A9 algorithm so titles need to be very informative and contain words consumers are looking for. However, your title shouldn’t be stuffed full of so many keywords that it looks unprofessional or is complete garble as this will in fact lower your ranking due to a lack of relevancy.

It is also significant to note that ASINs with higher sales conversions are prioritised over others. This is because they are already proven to make sales. A diplomatic response to this would be that these sales suggest that consumers found exactly what they wanted and bought it. A more cynical view might be that Amazon knows these sales will make them money so are less likely to give highly coveted SEO rankings to sellers who aren’t guaranteed to make them sales. This obviously can become cyclical; the better ranking you have, the more sales you make and the more sales you make, the better ranking you gain. The key is reaching that point. If you are a new seller on Amazon have no fear though, you can still advertise your ASINs via sponsored ad campaigns. This will hopefully increase your sales and also bring awareness to your brand so that your listing will start selling naturally.

Making sure that your products are retail ready is also a defining factor in determining your position. As said before, Amazon’s main goal to to provide consumers with the exact products they are looking to buy. As we all know, an unfinished listing is not going to entice consumers to buy. Ascertain whether all your ASINs at optimised to increase SEO ranking. Things such as the availability of stock, good quality images and amazing A+ are all things you can do easily that will do wonders for your ranking. Additionally, doing so will also increase sales conversions!

Just like the others in this list, product reviews can really make or break a product. Great ratings not only make consumers trust your brand but also means Amazon trusts you as well. You will find yourself rising the algorithmic Amazon SEO ranks with every good review you achieve. That said, bad reviews will lower your ranking as well, so make sure your products are fully optimised and consumers know exactly what they are buying or you might find yourself receiving a lot of 1-star reviews.

If you are having difficulties gaining reviews then enrolling onto Amazon Vine or the Early Reviewer Program might be the perfect answer to aid you in this endeavour.

All 4 of these suggestions are pretty simple to accomplish if you know what you are doing. You might find that optimising your ASINs not only increases your SEO ranking but will also boost natural sales so optimising products will always be a win-win situation.

The first 3 products on a search results page gain 64% of clicks