The Ultimate Guide to Amazon Sponsored Product Targeting Ads

DataHawk is a web-based Amazon Analytics Tool that combines an Amazon Keyword Ranking Tracker, a Product and an Amazon Buy Box Tracker, a Market and Keyword Analysis tool, a Product Research engine, and a Sales Reporting tool. This is a blog post where we share some insights on the topic of joining the Amazon Brand Registry program. Our software comes with a free plan and advanced paid plans for sellers, vendors, and agencies of all sizes.

Amazon released a major update to sponsored ads at the end of November. The target of the new Amazon Ads update were options for Sponsored Products and an extensive list of new targeting options that have been added to the platform.

This comes as a huge help for advertisers who can now do a lot more with the advertising platform. With Amazon Sponsored Product ads, it’s now possible to target specific products or even entire categories.

This is a major change because in the past, Amazon’s platform was the one in charge of which Sponsored Products will be found in the best position on product pages. Since the update, advertisers can set up their campaigns and target categories, brands, and ASINs.

Once the advertisers fine-tune their targeting efforts, their product ads will be able to appear in the searches relevant to the category of the product, instead of the keyword that the shopper has used for searching. If a shopper types in “graphics card for gaming” the results will include ads targeted to the entire “Computers: Computer Components” section.

Let's see what new targeting features came with the update.

How the Update Affects Targeting Features

The extensive list of features incorporates the targeting features for Sponsored Product Ads, as well as the ones designed to make the management of automatic campaigns easier.

Automatic Campaigns

Amazon Automatic Campaigns

Targeting options

If you belong to the group of advertisers that prefers to use automatic campaigns, you will be happy to find out that the recent update has brought many new good things to Automatic Campaigns. Amazon has significantly improved auto-targeting to allow the advertisers to custom-tailor automatic ads.

In fact, now advertisers can choose precisely when to have their ad displayed, track the conversion, and make changes to increase sales even further.

Advertisers can go with one rule for their automatic campaigns or choose any combination of the rules. For instance, you can display your ad, just for detail pages, or only for search terms. Here’s the complete list of rules:

  1. Product pages similar (Substitutes) to your product.
  2. Search terms that are closely related (Close match) to your product listings.
  3. Search terms that only resemble (Loose match) your product listings.
  4. Product pages that complement products in your listings.

Extended Reporting

Since you’ve probably been using the “Keyword Report” feature, it’s important to note that the new update has renamed it. It is now called “Targeting Report”. You should also know that it’s not only the name that has changed here.

You are still going to take a look at the performance of your keywords in this feature. What’s new then? Now it provides insights into data from targeted categories and products, which has nothing to do with keywords.

This is a nice addition designed to help you identify the best performing targeting segment. Use “Targeting Report” extensively to learn from the data, custom-tailor your campaigns, get better results, and lower your advertising cost of sale (ACoS) for Amazon PPC.

Target Customers by Product

The new update allows sellers to target customers by-product, which is kind of great when you think about it. You don’t have to spend time or money researching keywords and devising an Amazon PPC advertising strategy at all now. Thanks to this update, you can now target even those that are deemed to be your direct competitors, thus increasing conversion rates, decreasing ACoS, and decreasing your competitor’s sale velocity.

If we compare this to keyword targeting, it becomes clear that keyword targeting is much too broad, and may easily result in losing a customer due to the lower price of competitors’ products. On the other hand, targeting competing products at the same price range increase your odds of driving sales.

Amazon Targeting Ads

Refining your targeting by brand, price, and star ratings

The new update allows you to refine your targeting by star ratings, price range, and specific brands.

Negative List

With the new update, sellers can now exclude products and entire brands from a campaign. This is a nice addition to the targeting feature, as it allows you to have complete control of your campaign and decide who you are going to be competing against.

Combining different targeting methods and monitoring the changes through the new “Target Report” feature is the best way to determine the best course of action. In time, you will be able to identify the pattern that works the best for your products and be able to drive sales in a more efficient manner.

How Amazon Beta Update Affects the Seller’s Strategy

This update doesn’t remove keywords targeting from the advertising equation. What it does is bring more options to advertisers or sellers. With so many options on the plate, advertisers can now fine-tune their efforts and leverage this new features to lower the advertising costs while improving the results.

Automatic campaigns require more attention

Benefit more from automatic campaigns by keeping a constant check in place. Don’t leave anything to chance, especially not now when you have the “Target Report” feature. Check the performance of each Product page targeting and search term pair to identify the ones with the best performance.

Become More Competitive

Advertisers can now offer a more attractive alternative to shoppers looking for specific branded products. With new targeting features, you can target specific brands or products. Reap the benefits of competitive targeting by playing with targeting price range, star reviews, and ASINs.

Streamlined Keyword Targeting

Sellers or advertisers don’t have to spend hours researching a mile-long list of keywords. Now they can target products, categories, and brands with more ease and still be able to drive sales.

The Benefits of Target Yourself

Get the entire page for yourself by biding on your product and getting rid of all competitors. Nobody prevents you from bidding on your own stuff. You can custom-tailor your campaign to target your categories and products at the same time.

Target Yourself can also help you drive your up-sales and cross-sales. Use this as an opportunity to display your complementary products to the shoppers, thus promoting them and increasing your brand awareness at the same time.

Target Related Categories

You can now expand your reach without focusing on keyword-targeting. Simply target the related categories and your products will appear frequently in relevant searches. This is a great way to increase the ROI of your Amazon PPC Software efforts.

How to Launch an Amazon Ad Campaign With New Targeting Features

Amazon has enabled the sellers to start using the new beta features. If you want to test them yourself, we have put up a step-by-step guide on how to launch an Amazon ad campaign by using the newly updated beta targeting features.

Create a Proper Campaign Type

Amazon Ads Campaign Types

Picking a Sponsored Products campaign type

Log in to your Seller Central account. To open the Campaign Manager you have to click on Advertising. Start by clicking the “Create campaign”. You will be offered to create Sponsored Products and Sponsored Brands (formerly Headline Search Ads). Click on the “Continue” button under the Sponsored Products.

Choose the Manual Targeting

Amazon Ads Campaign

Creating a Manual Targeting campaign

After you click the “Continue” button, you will get the “Create campaign” window. Here you will find the usual fields, including Campaign name, Start/End date of the campaign, and Daily budget. In the “Targeting” section make sure to choose “Manual targeting”.

Product Targeting Beta

Amazon Targeting

Picking Product Targeting over Keyword Targeting

After you enter the name for your ad group and select the products you want, you will be able to select the “Product targeting BETA” option in the Targeting menu. This will allow you to access all the newly added features in the latest beta update.

Customize Your Campaign By Category

Refining your targeting by category

Refining your targeting by category

In the product targeting window, you will be able to customize your campaign by choosing the preferred options. You can select and target any of the offered categories by simply clicking on the “Target”. If you want to truly experience the beta features, you should custom-tailor your targeting by clicking on “Refine”.

Amazon targeting by brand, price, and star ratings

Refining your targeting by brand, price, and star ratings

This is what we were talking about before. Here you will be able to select brands, set the price range, and even choose the review star rating of targeting.

Customize Your Campaign By Individual Products

Amazon Targeting by ASINs or SKUs

Targeting by products ASINs or SKUs

You can also target any individual product that you would like. All you have to do is click on the “Individual Products” tab. This will bring you a new section where you can pick from the Suggested products, search products you want to target or enter the target product if you already know its name, ASIN, or SKU.

If you click on “Suggested”, Amazon’s algorithm will bring you the list of all products relevant to your product.

Create Negative List

Negative targeting on Amazon

Using negative targeting to exclude brands or products

This is another new feature added in the update. Negative product targeting will allow you to exclude entire brands and/or the specific products. This option is quite neat. You can use it to prevent your ads from showing up on the listings of specific products and brands.

All Set? Launch the Campaign!

Once you’ve set up all the options and refined your strategy, you should click on the “Launch Campaign” button. This will launch your product targeting ad with all the newly added beta features.

Monitor the Campaign

You can now fine-tune your campaign on the go. The new “Targeting Reports” feature will help you do this. As we have already stated. “Targeting Reports” provides insights into the performance of targeted products and categories.

Get rid of the targeting options that are performing poorly, stick with the good ones, and try adding a new targeting option. Try to make this an ongoing effort, as it will help you get the biggest bang for your buck.


The new Amazon Product Targeting features beta update looks very promising. It allows sellers and advertisers to diversify their advertising efforts and shift the focus slightly away from targeting the keywords only.

The options that allow sellers to target products in the specific price range, star rating, or a specific brand, give a lot of advertising power to the sellers. With these new features, sellers will be able to reduce the campaign costs and still increase sales.

The old “Keyword Report” is now the new “Targeting Report”. This is a nice beta addition that enables sellers to draw insights from their targeting efforts, custom-tailor their approach, and achieve better results. Since these features are still in the beta phase, we advise that you allocate a smaller budget to test them first.

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