Whether you’re just starting or a longtime seller, every seller should be taking advantage of these tips on how to improve your Amazon ranking.
On Tuesday, Amazon kicked off their virtual Amazon Accelerate virtual conference for current and prospective sellers alike.
After a session titled “Getting Started: The Seller Journey,” guests could participate in a live Q&A with Conner Sigman, an Account Representative at Amazon. As they took questions from the digital audience, one question dominated in popularity:
“How do I get on the first page [of search results]?”
It’s a question that has raged on since 1999 when third-party sellers were allowed to sell on Amazon’s platform. But rarely do we get answers straight from the horse’s mouth on how to maximize rank. Sigman answered the question with five helpful tips that sellers should be doing to increase their opportunity to land on the coveted page one.
At Viral Launch, we strive to provide helpful solutions for Amazon sellers. Since our inception, we’ve studied what steps sellers can take to improve organic rank.
Below, we’ll share five recommendations on how to rank higher on Amazon and how our software suite of seller tools can help you accomplish these tasks.
Step 1: Choose Fulfillment By Amazon (FBA)
“Using FBA immediately will give you the Prime badge and also give you options for a couple of different advertising opportunities,” Sigman explained.
FBA comes with not-so-fun fees, but the cost is well worth the benefits of being a part of Amazon’s legendary fulfillment program.
Utilizing FBA guarantees the customer receives the full Amazon treatment that they are accustomed to experiencing. Free two-day shipping, the valuable Prime badges, and Amazon-led customer service ensure a sturdy foundation for your product. Customers want to know that they’ll receive their items quickly and be taken care of appropriately if any help is necessary.
Amazon takes care of all of that for you, simultaneously making your product more likely to be purchased while also taking cumbersome aspects of e-commerce off your plate. Choosing the FBA route will also help you out with #4 on this list!
Step 2: Optimize your product detail page
Consider your personal buying habits. Customers are drawn to main product images that pop off the page and sales-inducing copy that stands out.
“Product detail page is another really good opportunity to show how important your product is and how it differentiates from the rest,” Sigman said about product listings.
A crucial part of the formula to elevate your rank is increasing sales velocity. For this, your product detail page must have captivating product images to make a positive first impression and sales-inducing copy that is SEO-friendly.
For this step, Viral Launch actually offers a few helpful tools to help your listing stand out.
Listing Analyzer performs a SWOT analysis on key aspects of your listing, including your photos and copy to break down each characteristic of your listing to make sure it’s up to par. With MWS authorization, Listing Analyzer informs you of what facets of your listing are thriving and what has room for improvement.
Keyword Research and Listing Builder are a powerful duo that provides everything you need for an optimized listing for your listing’s written content.
Keyword Research provides valuable data in the form of an exhaustive keyword list and search volume estimates to inform you of your most potent traffic drivers.
Listing Builder allows sellers to experiment with their listing’s copy and strategically place keywords in areas with the most indexing weight.
To be eligible to rank for a specific keyword or phrase, it must be included somewhere in your listing. The title and bullet points possess the most indexing weight, so you’ll want to prioritize your more prized keywords accordingly.
Consider #1 and #2 to be the base level foundation for a successful, high-ranking listing. While these two alone do not guarantee a high ranking, it’s nearly impossible for a third-party seller to climb their way to the top without them in place.
Once you have these two tips mastered, the remaining tips become much easier to execute tactfully.
Step 3: Drive traffic through advertising and promotions
You’ve set your listing to convert, but how will people find your listing?
The two popular avenues to boosting discoverability for your Amazon listing are advertising or running promotions that drive external traffic.
To boost ranking through either of these options, your product listing would need to receive credit for purchase as if it came via a keyword either through advertising or search. When driving external traffic to your product listing in hopes of improving rank, you’ll want to make sure you use a two-step URL that includes the targeted keyword you’d like to improve your ranking for.
Two-step URLs require the customer to arrive at a search results page where your product is front-and-center and click through to purchase the product.
Running a Launch, or a discounted promotional giveaway to a buyer group with substantial size can be an excellent way to drive exposure and sales to your listing without relying on customers to stumble upon your product listing organically.
Another great option to boost external traffic to climb the Amazon ranks is ManyChat. ManyChat requires a bit of technical skill, but the results make it a no-brainer to learn. As we detailed in a prior post focusing on driving external traffic, we sum up the ManyChat process as such:
“To recap the basic steps for a ManyChat campaign:
Create ads and posts to provide an offer to your audience and direct them to messenger for engagement with ManyChat.
Develop a ManyChat script, first implementing some sort of simple engagement step.
If someone engages with the chat, provide them with the coupon code, steps to claim the code, and a link to purchase (using a targeted URL for the link)”
Advertising your product is a great way to get your product in front of potential customers. Amazon offers Pay-Per-Click (PPC) advertising that allows you to choose exact keywords or opposing product pages to advertise on to capture some sales.
“The first thing I would say is to start a pay-per-click campaign; even if you want to budget $5 a day, it will help a lot.”
Kinetic and Keyword Manager are two tools within the Viral Launch fleet of seller tools that help you run, monitor, and automate your PPC advertising campaigns.
Keyword Manager showcases your high-priority keywords and notifies you of its organic and sponsored rank for each keyword. You can even sign up for rank change notifications to stay up-to-date on how ads or promotions impact your ranking in real-time.
Kinetic is our all-encompassing PPC automation tool that simplifies creating and optimizing your PPC campaigns from start-to-finish.
Step 4: Earn reviews
Let’s take another step back and think about our own buying habits. You’re looking for a product and the pictures caught your eye, the compelling copy explains why you need this. But before you add to cart, you want to see what customers have to say about this product.
Sigman highlighted Amazon’s stance on customer reviews, “The product detail page and customer reviews are also something we really cherish here at Amazon.”
By placing a product’s average review rating and review count directly below the product title, customers can quickly see how past customers feel about a particular product. Bad reviews or no reviews at all risk losing consumer trust, and that can spell doom for your product.
Amazon’s Early Reviewer Program helps sellers garner their first five reviews to compete with more mature products. We strongly recommend paying the fee to join the program to help get your listing off the ground, but the program ends once you earn your fifth review.
After the fifth review, there are very few options with Amazon’s terms of service for sellers to generate reviews. You’ll find competitor tools and Facebook groups to help boost reviews. But, Amazon can and will erase those reviews and provide a warning or even a ban to sellers who utilize these methods to amass reviews.
Enter Viral Launch’s Request Automation tool.
Within the Market Intelligence Chrome extension, sellers can grant MWS access that allows the tool to send review requests in bulk to your customers. It’s a time-saving hack that is entirely within Amazon’s Terms of Service!
Step 5: Be Price-Competitive
It’s no secret that Amazon can be a dog-eat-dog marketplace, and that’s a hallmark of its success. A competitive marketplace means sellers have to box out competitors, resulting in a lower price for customers. Sellers need to remain price-competitive to keep a steady flow of sales coming in.
As previously mentioned, sales velocity is critical towards boosting and maintaining your ranking. If your product isn’t price-competitive with others in your market, picking up optimal sales velocity is an uphill battle.
With Viral Launch’s Market Intelligence and Listing Analyzer tools, you can quickly inspect and examine your competition. As displayed in the image for #2 on this list, Listing Analyzer will show you the average market price.
Market Intelligence takes a more granular approach to keeping tabs on rival sellers. Search a keyword to find your product, and you’ll see a full list of significant metrics, including price, of each top-selling competitor.
Clicking on any of the data points in orange and you’ll also be able to see this data historically. With this, you can see when your competition has raised or lowered their price and how it’s impacted their sales.
One Last Note On Sales Velocity
The importance of sales velocity cannot be understated when looking to boost or maintain your ranking. Sales rank is updated hourly on Amazon, so the ranking algorithm is continuously checking for sales trends.
To rank with the top-sellers in your market, you need to sell like them. A market research tool like Market Intelligence provides all the answers you need to know how the page one competition is performing. Depending on the market, it may only take a day or two of high sales velocity to see a significant increase in ranking.
Utilizing PPC or driving external traffic and sales to your listing through a keyword via a Launch are two recommended strategies for boosting your product exposure and increasing the probability of a sale through the keyword of choice.
At Viral Launch, we have a tool for each step of the way to help you improve your Amazon ranking and help you achieve out-of-this-world results!