In late 2018, Amazon unveiled a feature that is having great success among Seller Central users: Product Targeting. This new advertising capability is rapidly becoming the e-commerce titan’s most efficient – and lucrative – traffic source.
Sponsored Products is an advertising tool that has traditionally targeted keywords. A great way to promote your Amazon listings in search results and on other listings.
In addition to targeting by keyword, you can now target by product within the Sponsored Products tool.
But what exactly is Product Targeting?
What is Product Targeting?
Simply put, Product Targeting is a sophisticated version of Keyword Targeting.
Until recently, Sponsored Products offered two targeting options:
- Automatic targeting
- Manual targeting by keyword
With this release, advertisers will receive two new targeting features:
- New Automatic targeting campaign management controls
- Manual targeting by product, category and brand (Product Targeting)
This PPC (Pay Per Click) feature is for manual campaigns. It allows you to strategically reach relevant shoppers and to increase control over where your ads appear. This way, shoppers can find your products easier. And you can target and manage campaigns based on specific attributes such as:
- Rating, or
- Other product features similar to the product in your ad
These results can be found under the section “Sponsored products related to this item”.
Getting Started with Product Targeting
Let’s say the product you want to advertise is a shampoo for dogs.
You can refine your targeting by selecting the following categories:
- Dog shampoo
- Best dog shampoo
- Dog grooming
- Shampoo for dogs
- Dog care
- Dog grooming tips
However, you can also choose to target similar products /categories that fit into the category “bought together.” This can help reach wider audiences. For example:
- Conditioning treatment
- Pet clippers
- Pet skin problems
- Dog grooming supplies
- Pet products
Additionally, you can refine both by:
- Price points
- Star reviews
- Prime eligibility
Manual Targeting Updates
Another more advanced option allows you to choose products to target shopper searches and set custom bids. You can now customize your PPC campaigns to target:
- Brands, and
Category Targeting. With this feature, you can target product categories within the price range you sell in. It is also very useful for products that don’t have a high-volume keyword search.
Brand Targeting. You can target brands you want your ad to show up for, and this feature can be beneficial for almost any product.
ASIN Targeting. Enables you to target specific ASINs you want your ad to show up for.
Keep in mind that your ad might be appearing for thousands of unprofitable and irrelevant searches. These will only lead to low conversion rates. Therefore, you should keep your keywords as specific as possible.
*We recommend lowering your bid before excluding them altogether. *
Take these factors into consideration when using negative keywords:
- They can only be used with exact match types.
- You cannot change the match type of an existing negative keyword.
- You can have up to 10 search terms in a negative exact match type.
After your campaign has been running, you can view your campaign’s performance in Campaign Manager. Based on the performance data, you can modify the targeting to meet your business goals.
But, wait for a week, at least, to collect enough data before making any changes or adjustments.
How to Create a New Campaign with Product Targeting
1. Log in to Seller Central.
2. Select Campaign Manager under the Advertising tab.
3. Choose Sponsored Products from the Campaign Type options.
4. Click Continue.
5. Create a new Sponsored Products Campaign.
6. Under Settings, choose a descriptive name for your campaign, so you can easily identify it later.
7. Set your Start date and Daily budget.
8. Tick “Manual Targeting”, from the Targeting options.
9. Give your Ad Group/Campaign a descriptive name, and choose the products you would like to advertise.
10. Next, choose your bidding strategy:
- Dynamic bids – down only
- Dynamic bids – up and down
- Fixed bids
11. Finally, choose Product Targeting, from the Targeting options.
- You will see two new ways to target:
- Categories (Products that are grouped by similarities)
- ASINs (Individual products)
12. Now, you are ready to launch your campaign. Within 12 hours, you can start reviewing your performance in Campaign Manager.
Note: You can target both Categories and ASINs within the same Ad Group by searching for a category that is similar to your advertised product. Once you’ve decided a category, you can either add the entire category to your target or refine the category by Brand, Price or Star reviews.
Product Targeting Done Right
When launching your first product targeting campaign, take these suggestions into account:
- Compare your products with the market and make sure that your price, reviews, added value, and the quality of your pictures are better than those from the competition.
- Increase your visibility by choosing a category in which your presence is limited. Amazon allows you to choose multiple categories within one campaign, however this practice can be to broad, and, if you do that, it will be a lot harder to reach/target specific audiences.
- Since generic words are more expensive, avoid targeting products with generic keywords. Refine each category and try out different combinations.
- Use one product per campaign. With other campaigns, you are allowed to include a few products in the same campaign, but remember that with Product Targeting you want to be as specific as possible to obtain better results.
- Target your own products. Monitor your sales and identify which product targeting strategy was implemented more effectively and which products targeted were more profitable. Imagine which of your items could be sold with other products and then target those ASINs so your items appear there.
- Avoid unnecessary spending by using negative keywords, and prevent your ads from appearing for thousands of unprofitable and irrelevant searches. Low performing ASINs can go in an automatic campaign marked as NEGATIVE.
- ASINs with the highest conversion rates and lowest Advertising Cost of Sale should be targeted manually to reduce the margin of possible errors, since they can bring you higher profit.
* Most importantly, find your competitors that are right for the picking. The low-hanging fruit that you can go ahead and stick your ad on their page.*
It’s likely they have a high-star rating and a good amount of sales, but their listing might not have as many pictures as yours or their product description isn’t as thorough.
Having said that, make visiting your competitors’ Product Detail pages an every-day practice.
Whether you are a newcomer figuring out how to play the Amazon game or an existing/experienced seller striving to win your way through to the top brands, the new Sponsored Ads feature, Product Targeting, is a fantastic opportunity to boost sales and keyword rankings.