Category Product Targeting Ads – A Full Tutorial to Scale Your Amazon FBA Brands

category product targeting ads

Are you an Amazon seller looking to supercharge your Amazon PPC campaigns and boost your FBA brand’s success? 

If so, you’re in the right place. Today, we’re diving deep into a powerful, yet often overlooked, strategy: Category Product Targeting Ads. 

These ads can be a game-changer for your Amazon business, offering a unique blend of precision and reach. 

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll take you through the ins and outs of Category Product Targeting Ads, from understanding their essence to reaping the rewards and automating your campaigns. 

category product targeting ads

So, grab your virtual fishing rod, because we’re about to cast a wide net and reel in some incredible insights!

Understanding Category Product Targeting Ads

If you’re an Amazon seller navigating the complex world of PPC (Pay-Per-Click) advertising, you’ve probably encountered a myriad of targeting options. 

Here’s the thing: there’s one particular ad type that doesn’t always get the spotlight it deserves, and that’s the Category Product Targeting Ad.

So, what exactly are Category Product Targeting Ads? 

They are a powerful advertising tool within the Amazon ecosystem that allows you to target an entire product category rather than specific keywords or individual products. 

These ads are strategically placed within the selected category, offering a unique way to reach potential customers.

category product targeting ads

A Balancing Act: Between Auto and Manual Targeting

Imagine Amazon advertising as a vast fishing expedition. 

In one boat, you have your Auto campaigns, casting a wide net over the entire lake, hoping to catch any fish that swim by. 

On the other boat, your Manual campaigns are precision fishing, aiming for specific species in a specific area.

Category Product Targeting Ads? 

Well, they’re the boat right in the middle of the lake. 

They combine the benefits of both Auto and Manual campaigns, offering a balanced approach. It’s like targeting a particular section of the lake where you’re likely to find fish without pinpointing a single fish’s location.

The Fishing Analogy: Reeling in the Concept

Let’s delve a little deeper into this fishing analogy to make it crystal clear. 

Like we said, when you run Auto campaigns, you’re essentially casting a wide net into the entire lake. You might catch various fish, some relevant to your product, and others not so much. 

It’s an excellent way to discover what’s out there, just like discovering new keywords and product display pages.

On the other hand, Manual campaigns are like selecting a specific fishing spot, knowing exactly where the fish you want are located. 

You’re laser-focused on those particular areas, much like targeting specific keywords or ASINs on Amazon.

Category Product Targeting Ads, however, take a different approach. 

They let you choose a category, like choosing a particular section of the lake known for a certain type of fish. Your ads then appear within that category, ensuring you capture the attention of potential buyers interested in products related to your niche.

In essence, these ads find a middle ground. 

You’re not casting too wide a net as with Auto campaigns, and you’re not being overly specific as with Manual campaigns. Category Product Targeting Ads offer a balance that can be incredibly effective in your Amazon advertising strategy.

Benefits of Category Product Targeting Ads

Category Product Targeting Ads are like the unsung heroes of Amazon PPC campaigns. They might not always steal the spotlight, but they bring a host of benefits that can elevate your advertising game. 

Let’s dive into why you should pay close attention to these remarkable ads.

Broad Reach with Laser-Sharp Relevance


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One of the standout advantages of Category Product Targeting Ads is their ability to balance broad reach with laser-sharp relevance. Here’s how it works:

  • Broad Reach – These ads allow you to target an entire product category on Amazon. Think of it as advertising to everyone interested in a particular hobby or need within that category. This broader approach means your ads can reach a more extensive audience than with manual targeting.
  • Laser-Sharp Relevance – Despite their wide net, Category Ads maintain relevance by ensuring your products align with the category you select. This means you’re not promoting fishing gear to gardening enthusiasts – you’re showing fishing gear to those passionate about fishing. Your message stays on point.

Lower ACoS: The Cost-Efficiency Factor

Every Amazon seller knows the importance of keeping the ACoS (Advertising Cost of Sales) in check. Category Product Targeting Ads often shine in this department. Here’s why:

  • Cost-Efficient Reach – Since these ads cast a broader net while remaining relevant, they often come with lower CPC (Cost Per Click) compared to highly competitive keywords in manual campaigns. You’re reaching a more extensive audience at a fraction of the cost.
  • Efficient Discovery – Category Ads are excellent for discovering new opportunities within your niche. As you explore different categories related to your products, you can uncover hidden gems – high-converting ASINs and product display pages that you might have missed with narrower targeting.
  • Balanced Advertising Spend – By running Category Ads alongside your existing campaigns, you can allocate your advertising budget more efficiently. These ads can serve as a cost-effective complement to your overall strategy.

In a nutshell, Category Product Targeting Ads provide a cost-efficient way to reach a broader audience without sacrificing relevance. They can be a secret weapon in your quest to optimize your ACoS and make the most of your advertising budget.

Now that you’re convinced of their benefits, let’s roll up our sleeves and explore how to create these impactful ads.

Creating Category Product Targeting Ads

Now that you’re eager to harness the potential of Category Product Targeting Ads, let’s roll up our sleeves and dive into the creation process. 

We’ll walk you through the steps to set up these ads in your Amazon Ads console and offer some tips for optimizing your targeting.

Step-by-Step Guide to Creating Category Product Targeting Ads

  1. Log into your Amazon Seller Central account, and access the Amazon Ads console by clicking the hamburger (three lines) menu in the top left corner, hover your cursor over Advertising, and select Campaign Manager from the drop-down menu.
  2. Click Create Campaign.

  3. Click the blue Continue button under Sponsored Products.

  4. Click the radio button next to Manual Targeting under the Targeting heading.
  5. Click the radio button next to Product Targeting under the Manual Targeting heading.

  6. Pick Your Categories – This is where the magic happens. 

You can either select categories that are directly relevant to your product or use a reverse search method. 

Here’s how to do both:

  • Direct Selection – If your product fits snugly into a specific category (e.g., “Electronics” for a smartphone accessory), simply choose that category.
  • Reverse Search – If you’re unsure about the best category for your product, you can employ a reverse search. Find competitors who sell similar products and see which categories they’ve chosen. This can give you valuable insights and guide your selection.
  1. Set Your Bid and Daily Budget – As with any advertising campaign, setting the right bid and daily budget is crucial. Start with a reasonable bid and budget, and be prepared to monitor and adjust them as you gather data.
  2. Launch Your Campaign – Once you’ve filled in all the necessary details and double-checked your settings, it’s time to launch your Category Product Targeting Ads campaign.

The Art of Category Selection and Refinement

Selecting the right categories for your ads is a critical step in the process. 

Here are some tips to guide you:

  • Relevance is Key – Ensure that the categories you choose are highly relevant to your product. The more closely aligned they are, the better your ads will perform.
  • Limit the Number of Categories – It’s generally best to target no more than three categories per campaign. This allows you to maintain focus and accurately attribute your product to the right categories.
  • Use Refinement Options – Amazon provides refinement options such as price range and review star ratings. These refinements help you further narrow down your audience within your chosen category. For example, you can bid higher for products in a specific price range or with a certain star rating.

Refinement options can be especially useful in optimizing your targeting. They allow you to reach the most relevant audience within your selected category.

With these steps and insights in mind, you’re well on your way to creating effective Category Product Targeting Ads. But that’s not all – now it’s time to explore how to scale these ads for maximum impact.

Scaling Category Ads

Category Product Targeting Ads are not a one-trick pony. In fact, their versatility allows you to scale your advertising efforts across various ad types within the Amazon ecosystem. 

Let’s explore how you can expand your reach and increase sales by scaling Category Ads.

Scaling Across Different Ad Types

Category Product Targeting Ads can be deployed across multiple ad types on Amazon, including:

Sponsored Products

To scale within Sponsored Products, simply follow the same steps you used to create your initial Category Ads campaign. The key is to choose the right categories that align with your products. Monitor and adjust your bids for optimal performance.


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Sponsored Brands

To expand into Sponsored Brands, you’ll need to create a new campaign, select Sponsored Brands as the ad type, and then choose Product targeting

Pick the relevant categories and craft compelling brand-focused ads. Remember, Sponsored Brands offer prime real estate on Amazon search results, so it’s a valuable addition to your strategy.

Sponsored Display

Sponsored Display allows you to target audiences based on interests, behaviors, and in-market segments. To scale your Category Ads here, create a campaign, select Product targeting, and pick the categories that match your products. Sponsored Display ads can appear on product detail pages, making them a powerful way to reach potential buyers.

The Flexibility and Potential for Increased Sales

Scaling Category Product Targeting Ads across different ad types provides you with flexibility and the potential for substantial sales growth. 

Here’s why it’s a smart move:

  • Diverse Placement – By using various ad types, your ads can appear in different locations on Amazon, from search results to product detail pages. This diversified presence increases your chances of catching shoppers’ attention.
  • Reinforced Branding – Sponsored Brands campaigns allow you to feature your logo and multiple products, reinforcing your brand’s visibility and authority in your niche.
  • Comprehensive Targeting – Sponsored Display’s audience targeting options enable you to reach potential customers who might be interested in your products, even if they haven’t actively searched for them.
  • Adaptable Strategy – With a well-balanced mix of Category Ads across different ad types, you can adapt your strategy to the ever-changing landscape of Amazon. As you gather data, adjust your bids, and refine your targeting, you’ll find the sweet spots that drive the most sales at the lowest ACoS.

Scaling your Category Ads is not just about expanding your reach, it’s about optimizing your advertising strategy for maximum impact. 

Harvesting Data and Automating Campaigns

So, you’ve launched your Category Product Targeting Ads and seen them work their magic. Your journey doesn’t end with campaign creation. It’s equally crucial to harvest valuable data from these campaigns and automate them for ongoing success.

The Significance of Data Harvesting

Data is the currency of modern advertising, and it holds the key to refining your Amazon PPC strategy. 

When you run Category Ads you’re not only aiming for immediate sales, you’re also gathering valuable insights. 

Here’s why data harvesting matters:

  • Conversion Insights – You can identify which ASINs within your chosen category are converting well. These are high-quality targets you’d want to include in your manual product targeting campaigns.
  • Bid Adjustments – By analyzing the performance data, you can fine-tune your bids for maximum efficiency. Bid more aggressively for products that drive sales and lower your bids for underperforming ones.
  • Budget Allocation – Data helps you allocate your advertising budget more effectively. You can invest more in categories that yield better results while reducing spending in less productive areas.

Automating the Transition

To make the most of your Category Product Targeting Ads, consider automating the process of transferring converted ASINs into your manual targeting campaigns. This automation saves you time and ensures that you don’t miss out on potential sales. 

Here’s how you can do it:

  1. Use Rules and Automation Tools – Amazon’s Advertising Console offers rules and automation tools that allow you to set conditions for transferring ASINs from one campaign to another. For instance, you can create a rule that moves ASINs with more than one conversion from your Category Ads campaign to your manual targeting campaign.
  2. Employ External Software – While Amazon provides some automation features, external software like Seller Metrics can take your automation game to the next level. Seller Metrics allows you to create sophisticated rules based on various performance metrics, enabling you to optimize your campaigns more effectively.
  3. Monitor and Adjust – Whether you use Amazon’s tools or external software, it’s essential to regularly monitor the automated processes. Check which ASINs are being transferred, assess their performance in manual campaigns, and adjust your rules as needed.

The Role of External Software

While Amazon’s Advertising Console offers robust tools, external software like Seller Metrics can provide additional benefits. 

Here’s why you might consider using it:

  • Advanced Rule Customization – Seller Metrics allows you to create highly customized rules based on multiple data points, giving you more control over your campaigns’ automation.
  • Enhanced Reporting – The software often provides more in-depth reporting and analytics, allowing you to gain deeper insights into your campaign performance.
  • Time-Saving – External software can streamline the automation process, saving you time and effort, and ensuring your campaigns are always optimized.

In conclusion, harvesting data and automating your Category Product Targeting Ads campaigns is essential for long-term success on Amazon. 

By efficiently transferring high-performing ASINs to your manual campaigns, you can continuously improve your advertising strategy and boost your sales.

Parting Thoughts

In the world of Amazon advertising, where the competition is fierce and the landscape ever-evolving, Category Product Targeting Ads stand as a potent and underappreciated tool. 

Let’s recap the key takeaways from our journey into the realm of these ads and chart your path forward:

  1. Balance Broad Reach with Relevance – Category Ads offer the unique ability to cast a wide net while maintaining laser-sharp relevance. They allow you to target entire product categories, ensuring your message reaches a vast but still highly relevant audience.
  2. Lower ACoS, Higher Efficiency – The cost-efficiency factor of Category Ads cannot be overstated. They often come with lower CPC and provide an excellent way to lower your ACoS while discovering new opportunities and high-converting ASINs.
  3. Scaling for Success – Category Product Targeting Ads can be scaled across various ad types, including Sponsored Products, Sponsored Brands, and Sponsored Display. This versatility allows you to diversify your advertising strategy, reach different parts of the Amazon marketplace, and reinforce your brand’s presence.
  4. Harvesting Data and Automation – Collecting data from your Category Ads is crucial for refining your advertising strategy. By automating the transfer of converted ASINs into manual targeting campaigns, you can ensure that your campaigns continuously evolve and improve.

Now, it’s time for action. We invite you to explore the untapped potential of Category Product Targeting Ads on Amazon. Experiment with different categories, refine your targeting, and monitor your results closely. With the right approach, these ads can be a game-changer for your Amazon business.

If you ever find yourself needing expert guidance, our Amazon marketing agency is here to assist you. If you’re an Amazon Seller or a brand looking to grow your business profitably, we’re just a call away. We specialize in helping clients navigate the complexities of Amazon advertising and achieve their goals.

To take the next step toward Amazon advertising success, we invite you to schedule a call with our team. Let’s work together to elevate your Amazon PPC campaigns, boost your sales, and ensure your brand thrives in the world’s largest online marketplace.

May your Amazon ventures be prosperous and your advertising strategy ever-evolving.


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