We now live in an age where the terms SEO and keyword research are common parlance, and the techniques have become as ubiquitous as television commercials when it comes to marketing tactics. This means whether you’re a rookie seller or you run a well-established business, if you’re not investing in keyword optimization, then you’re sitting on top of an untapped resource.
Amazon’s search algorithm, however, works differently than any Google or Bing or other search engine algorithm when it comes to populating results. You’ll need to study up a little to understand how Amazon ranking works and what you can do to boost traffic to your product pages.
For starters, you need to remember that Amazon’s primary and most important order of business is to sell things. That means virtually all Amazon searches are transactions waiting to happen, unlike Google searches. As such, their algorithm is driven by two things: relevance and performance.
Speaking the language of your target audience brings you at least ten times closer to converting and ranking better. Simply put, putting in place an effective search engine optimization strategy is critical to success as a seller. Keywords will:
- help you optimize your listings
- boost product visibility
- inhabit all the Amazon back-end search terms
- let you understand and target buyer persona
- function effectively as the heart of your product campaigns
Searching for and applying relevant keywords might be a challenge for you, but it’s crucial if you want to rocket your product pages higher up in the ranks and stay competitive in a saturated market like Amazon. Check out our list of five tips guaranteed to help you broaden your keywords, optimize your listings, and drive more organic traffic.
How to Improve Your Listing Keywords on Amazon
1. Sign Up for Google Ads Keywords Planner
This tool is free to use and easily accessible, with a feature that runs suggested search terms based on info from Google’s search results. To start it off, define a list of main keywords you’ll input as a prompt and guide for the tool to generate terms for you. Once it populates the results with the relevant terms, that compiled information can be downloaded.
You can then edit and sift through to get the terms that are related to your product needs, using various filters, to see things like keyword total search volume. Take note, though, that the Google Keyword Planner tool will first ask for basic billing info to set up an account, and although the tool itself is free, the campaigns are PPC. You can easily pause a campaign if your budget doesn’t allow you to spend extra cash.
2. View Webpage Source Code
The source code is the programming language or HTML of a website, and this code can be easily viewed by anyone through the web browser itself. By accessing and reading a website’s source code, you can readily discover keywords from competitors, which makes it a great tool to use on different e-commerce sites.
Once you’re on a product page that you want to research, you can right click your mouse and select “View Page Source”. From here, you can search for and find out the different tags used within the page, which will give you insight into the keywords that other sellers are targeting for a specific product.
Tags are important because they reveal keywords that pages typically try to rank for, and they also give instructions to search engines to review, which affects how they appear in search results. When searching for tags (a quick control/command + F keystroke), pay particular attention to <title> and <meta name=“description”>, as these should contain the top keywords.
3. Implement a Keyword Tool
There are strategic tools that can give you a clear view into a customer’s mind and what they search for within your niche, like Keyword Inspector (KI). This handy tool will make you stand out from your competition, allowing you behind-the-scenes access to all kinds of data on Amazon ASINs and sellers. Streamline your Amazon product listings with real-time data provided by KI’s advanced software, so you can:
- monitor high-converting keywords
- identify search terms that are used the most often
The software organizes the data by search volume, organic rankings, sponsored ASINs, and many other useful parameters. Additionally, there is a Chrome extension, and once you’ve installed it you can gain access to various features like:
- Amazon Product Research
- ASIN Grabber
- Brand Grabber
With a tool like Keyword Inspector, you’ll be able to discover thousands of keyword search terms at the click of a button to help you bump your products up the rankings.
4. Use Amazon Sponsored Ads
This tip applies to sellers who already have Amazon Sponsored Ads running and who own a brand, and can therefore access the Brand Analytics feature. These are an incredibly useful source of information you can use to download a Search Terms report from Amazon.
Monitor which of your ads are generating the most traffic and bringing you the most conversions, because those are the ads that are worded correctly. You can then dive further into them and pick out specific search terms you can optimize. Amazon Search Terms reports will let you know how customers are finding your products, as well as those of your competitors. Essentially, you can access the top terms on Amazon for any given time.
Think of it as an inverted pyramid: in most cases you use keywords to convert and make sales; in this case, you’re using terms that are converting to compile a list of keywords that you can feed into your product descriptions. This will help boost your organic rankings and drive you higher up in the search results.
5. Read the Amazon Search Bar Autofill
The autocomplete feature helps you see what buyers are searching for so you can create targeted keywords that aren’t generic or too broad. They draw data from Amazon, providing you with several variations of keywords and different key phrase options.
Instead of trying to string together terms you guess people might be using, this is a simple way to gather terms that Amazon has recognized from users’ past searches. It almost seems too easy. There is one catch though: you’ll have a ton of data to sort through in order to find the specific terms that are most relevant to what you need, and remember, keyword and search term popularity is constantly changing, so you would need to update and research often.
How to Target More Customers with Engaging Keywords
In addition to the previously mentioned tools, features, and online tricks to turn you into a keyword research expert, there are different factors to consider when drafting search terms and optimizing your listings to target and convert more customers.
Who are you trying to reach with your product?
A simple change from “running shoes” to something even slightly more specific like “running shoes for women” can reach hundreds and thousands more prospects, while creating additional search terms you could cash in on. Specify if your product is for kids of a certain age, for athletes, for students, for beginners, for moms or dads, for retirees…you get the idea. Make sure you consider your audience when deciding ideal keywords, so you can specifically target those who are already an interested buyer.
Take into account spelling variations, alternative names, and other languages.
For something as seemingly mundane and universal as a pair of shoes, there may be five different ways to say the same thing, changing from region to region or person to person. Trainers in one country are also known as sneakers across the pond, but the term tennis shoes is just as prevalent in the same location.
If you find yourself in a country where more than one language is common, you might even want to put keywords in another language, if the term is popular and commonly used. There may also be multiple spellings for the same item, for instance the American spelling of “jewelry” versus the British “jewellery”, and it would help to include both to widen your reach.
Consider common spelling errors.
Put yourself in the customers’ place and think about all the spelling errors that could be made when searching for a product. Trying to spell anything from “kernel – kernel” and “marshmallow – marshmellow” can easily confuse people, and many don’t bother to look for the correct spelling, especially if the incorrect spelling pops up in the search results. To make up for this, there are tools that have misspelling checkers which scan the terms you want to use for a product listing and find common spelling errors of them, so you can include these in your listings and still reach customers who may have typed in a word incorrectly.
What is the purpose of the product?
This is where you need to let your creative juices flow and include descriptive action words, from run and meditate to play and grill, depending on what your product is used for. It’s also a good idea to let the customer know what kind of results they’ll achieve when they use the product. Instead of “food processor”, get more specific and paint a picture that tells them “state-of-the-art food processor dices veggies into tiny cubes in seconds,” or let them know about a blanket that is a “cozy quilt to calm nerves.”
Don’t forget about synonyms.
Bring out the thesaurus to aid in your research, and take note of as many variations a single item could have. Different people refer to items differently, whether the variations occur generationally, regionally, or by some other factor. For example, a pan might be called a skillet or a saucepan, and if you include them all, you cast a wider net when targeting interested buyers.
Building Your Amazon Presence with Keywords
Many sellers will agree that making it on Amazon is a combination of a number of things, and the formula is ever-changing. But one constant is having a thorough and effective keyword approach. Figuring out what prospective customers search for–and then applying this to your own listings–is one of the surest ways to guarantee that you’re putting out content that reaches the right market and actually converts. Go ahead and try out some of our suggestions, and start reaching more customers and achieving better rankings today.