The Ultimate Guide to Amazon Sponsored Products Ads Keywords

Amazon offers more advertising options than almost any other e-commerce. Amazon Sponsored Products Ads are the most basic, beginner-friendly, and one of the most effective ways to advertise a product. For brands selling and growing on Amazon’s marketplace, Amazon Sponsored Products ads are—and will continue to be—one of the most powerful tools for driving discoverability and incremental sales for any catalog.

Amazon Sponsored Product Ads

The best Amazon sellers are always looking for ways to take their game to the next level, adopting advanced Amazon PPC techniques. Amazon Sponsored Products ads are pay-per-click ads that help brands drive the traffic to the desired Amazon product detail pages on the Amazon platform.  Most sellers on Amazon start their marketing journey via sponsored product ads, and for a good reason. These ads are shown directly in the user’s search results, and you have several ways to control your advertisement. 

Sponsored Products ads are marked with a minimal branding of the word “Sponsored”, but since the text is so tiny, it is barely noticeable in the search results. This is why your advertisements look like they are a part of organic search results.  Usually, these ads are pretty easy to set up and monitor. But the problem occurs when your business grows and you have hundreds of products and keywords to manage. It becomes increasingly hard to find keywords that generate sales, consume unnecessary budgets, or don’t harm your campaign. 

And if you are not regularly changing and monitoring your campaigns, you are only throwing away profit. Now, Amazon central also allows you to monitor and manage your keyword and products, but it is far from an optimal option. This is where DataHawk comes to the rescue. This Use Case will dive deep into the Amazon Sponsored Products Ads Bidding and help you maximize your paid advertising conversion rate.

1. Measuring Amazon Ads Performance

The best way to know when to ramp up - and back off - bid modifiers is to understand your Amazon Advertising Cost of Sale (ACoS). The ACoS should be your North Star, which helps you decide when to take more risk or back off to let things settle or try another keyword or product. In simplest terms, ACoS is your advertising spend divided by the sales that result from that spend. It's typically stated as a percentage to make things easy, math-wise.

Amazon ACoS increases when the money spent on ads increases faster than the revenue generated by ads or decreases when ad revenue generation increases faster than ad spend.

Ad spend depends on the number of clicks a product ad generates and the cost per click (CPC). Ad revenue on the other hand depends on the number of orders made per ad click and the revenue generated per order (which is the ASP, Average Selling Price):

This formula can be extended to reveal two key Amazon PPC metrics that govern Amazon ACoS: The Click-Through-Rate (CTR) and the Conversion Rate (CVR).

Clicks are the result of the impressions shoppers see or get when they view an ad and the click rate (CTR) is how often they click on an ad. Orders resulting from the number of clicks and how each of the clicks generates a sale (conversion rate, CVR).

When you advertise a product on Amazon, you are charged on CPC (cost per click) basis. If 10 people clicked on your ad and only one of them bought your product, then the total CPC you pay to Amazon for these 10 clicks is your cost of advertising to earn a sale. Amazon reports this cost as a percentage of the total sale value and terms it as Advertising Cost of Sale which is ACoS. 

  • The lower your ACoS, the better your Ad is performing: a theoretical ACoS of zero would mean you spend nothing, yet make a sale.
  • A high ACoS signifies an underperforming Ad. You are spending more to reach your target audience and are in danger of losing money on your Ad.

The use of the Amazon RoAS metric makes it easier for brands to sell several platforms to benchmark their Amazon campaigns' success against their other advertising channels. This allows Amazon to also provide a similar comparison of its ad's performance against competing platforms. Lastly, it becomes easier for brands and agencies that justify their ad spend in terms of returns to apply the RoAS formula to advertising on Amazon.  

2. Amazon Sponsored Products 

Amazon Sponsored Products ads are pay-per-click ads that help brands drive the traffic to the desired Amazon product detail pages on the Amazon platform. When an Amazon shopper searches for your keywords, your ad is eligible for display alongside the search results. The cost of becoming a part of this marketplace has been increasing constantly with more and more Amazon sellers trying to find their place under the roof.

Sponsored Products impact your brand’s overall Amazon marketplace presence by:

  • Accelerating the growth of newer or low-exposure ASINs
  • Increasing discoverability for your top Buy Box offers
  • Acting as an incremental revenue driver

There are two ways to build and manage your ASP strategy:

  1. Automatic targeting - Amazon uses product information to show ads to the relevant target audience.
  2. Manual targeting - Brands use keyword features to set their own ASP campaigns.

3. How Bidding Impacts Sponsored Products?

Bidding Impacts Sponsored Products

Since Amazon shoppers tend to have a higher intent to purchase, selecting the best keyword for your products is a vital component of your marketing strategy. Bidding on the right keywords for your products can improve your page sales rank and organic listings, and will ultimately influence your product sales. You should analyze the search term data to make strategic decisions on which products and keywords to bid higher or lower on.

Expert Tip: Negative Keywords make your ad strategy more efficient, You can also identify negative keywords through the Amazon Sponsored Products Search Terms Report.

This is why we recommend that advertisers utilize the Search Term Reports for Sponsored Products as their main source of keyword harvesting & optimization. Sponsored Products Keywords Report analyzes advertising performance, profitability & inventory metrics for keywords on which there are active Sponsored Products campaigns with Keywords Targeting. 

4. DataHawk Sponsored Products Keywords Report

Sponsored Products Keywords Report analyzes advertising performance, profitability & inventory metrics for keywords on which there are active Sponsored Products campaigns with Keywords Targeting. And, this report is a great way for you to Access bidding performance where you have an overview of the number of unique keywords you are bidding on. The analysis creates a leaderboard of top keywords by metric, including impressions, clicks, conversions, and ROAS. The period performance section gives you the numbers as to how much you have generated in terms of impressions, ad spend, paid sales.

The first thing this report tells you is how many distinct keywords you are currently bidding on. In our example, we are bidding on 211 keywords.

Sponsored Products Keywords Report

The report consists of all the important Ad KPIs around a keyword. It includes :

  • Impressions
  • Clicks
  • CTR
  • Ad Spend
  • Conversions
  • Units Sold
  • Sales
  • CPC
  • ACoS
  • ROAS
  • Cost per Sale

The KPI overview is a very effective way of reviewing your current results for the campaign, but it does not give you much information about what you should optimize.

With this data, you are able to determine your goals. For instance, if your Return on Ad Spend (ROAS ) is not optimal or not where you want it to be, you can note it and take steps to improve it. It is important to note that the desired ROAS can vary a lot based on profit margins and other expenses, a ROAS of 6x is a good target to aim for. 

Other critical metrics to look at here are your impressions and sales. If you are getting your desired or good enough impression metrics, but not actual satisfactory sales, then the problem is probably with your advertisement (or your product). 

Per-Keyword Metrics

As the name suggests, this section indicates different metrics based on per-keyword calculation. For instance, if the average CTR for your keywords is 1 percent, then there is an average of 1 percent chance that people will click on your product. This section also tells you different metrics calculated by other mathematical functions – average, minimum, maximum, worst 25 %, best 25 %, and median. 

If you are wondering why there are various calculations for these metrics, there is a reason. Let us explain with an example. Suppose your average CTR per keyword is much lower than your median CTR; it signals two things. Either you have many keywords in your campaign that have a low CTR, or you have a few keywords that have extremely low CTR. 

With that in mind, you can use this data to assess why your CTR and other metrics are not up to the mark and what you can do to fix them. 

Below are the metrics you get all these different types of data for: 

  • CTR
  • CPC
  • Conversion Rate
  • ACoS
  • ROAS

The Top 50 Keywords Leaderboard

The leaderboard gives you a central view of all the KPIs that matter, Impressions, clicks, CTR, CVR, ACOS & ROAS. 

Sponsored Products Keywords Report

In the Keyword column, you see the top 50 keywords on which there are active sponsored products ads with keywords targeting within the selected date range This section or leaderboard is probably the most helpful in optimizing your campaign and improving sales. There are a total of four leader boards like this—one for impressions, one for clicks, one for conversions, and one for ROAS. If you observe closely, you'll find that some of your keywords generate a lot of impressions, but not as many sales. And obviously, you want sales, in the end, as impressions are just numbers. 

What’s more, if you are getting a lot of impressions but not sales, it simply means that you may need to optimize your ad: make it more catchy, improve descriptions and photos, or anything that persuades the customer to learn more. 

Amazon ROAS to determine the most important keywords to bid on.

Along with the most important ad figures, Amazon ROAS is a direct determinant of how aggressively you should be bidding on a Keyword. 

Relating your CPC, ACoS & Cost per sale with the ROAS figures will help you determine the most interesting keywords to bid on.

Accessing inventory elasticity

In terms of inventory headroom, there could be more or less than what you are actually bidding on. This helps you understand if you need to be more aggressive in your CPC bidding to help you do that better. The Sponsored Products Ads Report also has the estimations for how much potential daily spend you could make to bag daily clicks and resultant daily units. This section helps you optimize your bidding habits based on the inventory headroom available. In essence, DataHawk's algorithm analyzes headroom availability and gives you exact instructions as to whether you should increase or decrease the bidding. As such allowing you to capture the maximum headroom possible for your keywords.

Moreover, it showcases the daily clicks and sales potential you can achieve if you decide to alter your bid according to the algorithm. 

Accessing inventory elasticity

Inventory related KPIs:

  • Daily Inventory
  • Inventory Share
  • Lost Inventory
  • Inventory Headroom 

The data above helps us evaluate the potential of your inventory. The derived KPIs include: 

  • Daily Sales Potential 
  • Daily Clicks Potential
  • Daily Units Potential

 The report also offers data on the bidding rate.

*Bidding rate is the percentage of time that we see you bidding on your top 50 keywords.

This is of immense help while accessing inventory elasticity.

Leverage DataHawk Score to determine how much to bid.

 How much to bid?

You can also use DataHawk’s score to make a quicker decision, the closer it is to 100% the more you should go aggressive on keyword bidding. 

Optimize Keywords with DataHawk’s recommendation

You have suggestions tied to each keyword score.

You also have all your bidding data gathered in Low quartile, Average, median, and top quartile view. Not only that, but you are also able to assess the leaderboard filtered by clicks, conversions, and ROAS.

These recommendations are based primarily on two parameters – CTR and ROAS. This way, you know exactly what you need to do with each keyword to improve your sales. 

Let us explain what each recommendation means in detail.

  • Be More Aggressive:

Below every leaderboard, you have a quartile analysis that calculates all the sixteen metrics (except recommendation) in four different ways - low quartile, average, median, and top quartile. Here’s why these metrics are helpful. Suppose you have a keyword ‘X’ from the top 50 leader board, which has a ROAS of 15x. But, your median ROAS is 5x. This means the ‘X' keyword is performing better than 50 percent of the keywords you are bidding on.

With that in mind, the recommendation is “Be more aggressive”. And here’s what being aggressive means. 

As you may know, on Amazon, you can only assign a budget to a campaign. So, you don't have any control over how much budget one specific keyword gets. To tackle this, you can take one high-performing keyword out of your current campaign and put it in another campaign with a few other performing keywords, and give that campaign a budget of its own. This way, all the budget goes only to your best-performing keywords instead of being diluted between many keywords.

Put another way, it’s better to assign 5 keywords a budget of $100, than assigning a budget of $500 to 100 keywords. 

  • Optimize it or Shut it down:

DataHawk's algorithm is no people pleaser. It can straight away tell you to shut down a keyword or continue to optimize it.

For instance, if you have a keyword with high impressions but low sales, you should either shut it down or optimize it. Because otherwise, it is just consuming an unnecessary budget.

  • Keep it running:

This recommendation is typically for your average performing keywords with an average ROAS. So, it would help if you kept some running as they are without making changes. 

These 17 metrics were for the top 50 keywords by impressions leader board; you have the same leader boards for clicks, conversions, and ROAS. 

DataHawk's Sponsored Products Ads ASINs audit

This audit is essentially the same as your audit for keywords targeting, but the metrics are calculated for the ASINs you are targeting. So, all the recommendations, leaderboards, quartiles, and metrics are identical. However, one significant advantage of having both audits – keywords & products – is that you can compare the KPIs of each audit and invest more budget in the better-performing campaigns.

Although Amazon is the biggest e-commerce out there, sellers still do not have the complete tools to ace their advertisements. Datahawk advertising is the one-stop shop for all Amazon advertising analytics. It allows you to connect several Amazon central accounts with one subscription and get highly in-depth reports for all ad campaigns.

One of the main reasons why people don’t get desired results from their ad campaigns is because they often think it is a “set and forget” thing. Whereas, in reality, ad campaigns are more of a trial & hit process. You have to constantly monitor your keywords/ASINs and keep changing the underperforming ones to keep securing sales. And this can only be achieved by analyzing the data regularly. 

But, analyzing hundreds of keywords is no piece of cake. It can take hours to manually filter through the data. That’s why sellers use tools like DataHawk- to save time & energy. With DataHawk, you learn to take advantage of data. You get to know the exact KPIs of all the keywords or ASINs in your campaigns, you get intelligent recommendations for each keyword/ASIN, and you get all the metrics calculated in quartiles with the ability to filter. 

DataHawk is analytics for Amazon but on Steroids. It has far more features than Amazon Central, and in addition, the data is more easily accessible. Start your analysis today to make the most of your CPC budget.

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