What’s the ultimate purpose of Amazon listing optimization? It’s to compel consumers to buy your products. Amazon listing optimization is essential in terms of your Amazon sales journey and helps differentiate your brand and products so that you garner the most visibility against your competition.
Creating a persuasive Amazon listing does not have to be as intimidating a process as it’s made out to seem. With some great resources in your tool belt, you can craft a conversion-worthy listing that will help you boost your product’s appeal and sales.
In this guide, you’ll learn Amazon listing optimization and creation from scratch. Any good copywriter will tell you that 99% of their work is backed by research and strategy, and that is why there are so many details to consider in Amazon listing optimization.
Before diving in, it’s important to understand how vital your Amazon listing is to your sales and the effectiveness of your Amazon PPC campaigns and strategy. Unfortunately, too many sellers attempt quick fixes and throw money at Amazon pay-per-click advertising to increase conversion in a last-ditch effort to save products from shrinking visibility. The truth of the matter is that Amazon listing optimization must come before Amazon PPC optimization to be successful.
What You’ll learn:
What is listing optimization in Amazon, and do you need it
- What to avoid in listing optimization
The first steps of Amazon listing optimization
Unlock your ideal buyer avatar
How to create foundational messaging
How to harness e-commerce copywriting in your listing
What are the foundations of Amazon listing optimization
What is Amazon SEO, and is it important to Amazon listing optimization
How to optimize the Amazon title
What are backend search terms, and how are they helpful
- How to create conversion-worthy Amazon bullet points
How to tell your brand story in the HTML description
Amazon FBA listing optimization: Images are everything
- What is A/B testing, and how can it benefit Amazon listing optimization?
Final Amazon listing optimization tips
Read the full guide to learn everything you need to know about Amazon Listing Optimization in 2023.
What is Listing Optimization in Amazon, and Do You Need it in 2023?
Amazon listing optimization, also known as Amazon search engine optimization, is the process of optimizing the Amazon product detail page to assist in increasing indexing and organic rank across the search results on Amazon. By optimizing a listing’s SEO and improving copywriting and imagery, Amazon sellers may gain a better shot at boosting visibility and sales on the world’s largest online marketplace. Optimization is helpful, especially as competition on Amazon increases.
What To Avoid In Amazon Listing Optimization
A cookie-cutter approach is never a good idea when building a brand, especially on Amazon in 2023. Sellers must start with a great product and pursue a 365-degree marketing and advertising initiative to unlock the best results. Here are some quick tips for what to avoid:
- Not leveraging SEO in your title
- Not following Amazon’s Code of Conduct
- Making FDA or pesticide claims
- Misleading customers
- Faulty products
- Poor branding
- Confusing, hard-to-read copywriting
- Feature-focused images without people or user generated content
- Lack of comparison to the “other guys”
- Weak keyword research and placement
Continue reading to learn how to optimize your Amaozn listing the write way in 2023.
The First Steps of Amazon Listing Optimization
The first step to Amazon listing optimization is to create a detailed product information sheet. This info sheet is not the typical info sheet you’d get from your manufacturer. It’s like the bible of your product, and it will come in handy down the line several times over. Start by performing a scratch and sniff of your product, so you can understand its positive attributes and possible drawbacks.
Step 1: Product Scratch and Sniff – How can you relay the benefits of your product if you don’t actually sample and test your product? You’d be surprised by the number of sellers who don’t order product samples and do not know their product’s full scope of features or benefits. Here’s a hint: it’s a lot! Review the packaging and inserts, and pull apart every aspect of the manufacturer’s user guide and warranty. Try your product for a week or two, and note as many positive and negative attributes as possible. You want to know how well it functions and where improvements can be made.
Step 2: Convert Features to Benefits – In case you forgot, here is the difference between a feature and a benefit. A feature is a part of your product. For example, The hot air brush is made with three heat settings. A benefit is an outcome associated with owning your product. The hot air brush smooths hair and dries hair faster.
In a spreadsheet, detail as many features and benefits that come to mind. Don’t forget to review competitor listings for added features and benefits you may not have realized. Ensure these added features and benefits are true to your product so you can provide consumers the most accurate information possible. Use a feature and benefit converter like the one we created in the image below to help you understand how the features of your product benefit your ideal customers.
Step 3: Research the Customer Reviews – Record as many reviews from your top 3 to 5 competitors in the same spreadsheet. Keep a close eye on your review data long after you start selling. Saving all of this information in one well-organized spreadsheet will help you understand areas of your product you may seek to improve over time. Helium10 offers a great feature where you can analyze a product’s review and question history using the Chrome extension with a press of a button. It compiles the data and tells users the common words from each review and Q&A. Sprinkle these words in your Amazon listing and address some of the common pain points in your Amazon bullet points.
Step 4: Analyze Customer Questions – Questions and answers are vital to Amazon listing optimization and can make a big impact. If you address a common question in one of your top 3 bullet points, the shopper doesn’t have to hunt too far for the information they need to make their purchase decision.
Feeling overwhelmed? Relax, we got you! Chrisitna Ink offers full Amazon listing optimization with a range of services, including advanced SEO, compelling copywriting, full graphic design, and more. Focus on what matters most in your Amazon business and let the experts at Chrisitna Ink handle all your Amazon listing optimization needs. Contact us today for a free Amazon listing audit.
Unlock Your Ideal Buyer Avatar Before Amazon Listing Optimization
Having a solid grasp of some basic marketing strategies will help you understand your audience. Before you begin to write your Amazon list, you need to clearly understand who exactly you are marketing your brand and products to. Creating a buyer avatar is a critical step in your branding and Amazon listing creation, but frequently sellers fail to carve out their specific audience.
How to Create a Buyer Avatar:
- Who? Give your avatar a name.
- Education? Did they attend a post-secondary institution? What type?
- Work? What do they do for work?
- What is their income bracket?
- What are their content interests and social media habits?
- Are they married, single, or divorced?
- Do they have children?
- What are their hobbies?
Now you have clear, tangible information about your target audience. Your buyer avatar will come in handy when you create your brand messaging across your brand assets. A buyer avatar will also help you focus attention on specific people who may be interested in your products on Amazon.
Spend time in Facebook groups, search Google Trends and Answer the Public, and read similar product reviews and questions and answers to perform crucial market research about your audience. Pay close attention to the questions they ask about similar products, their lifestyle, their pain points, how they converse online, and their demographics. Analyzing this data is the key to unlocking your ideal buyer.
How to Create Foundational Messaging
Once you have clearly outlined your buyer avatar, it’s a great opportunity to begin unfolding your brand story and messaging. This step is crucial to Amazon listing optimization as you’ll carry this vital messaging throughout your listing in areas such as:
- Amazon Bullet Points
- Amazon Brand Story
- A+ Content
- HTML Description
Without any marketing experience or business background, many Amazon sellers focus on what they like, not what problems their potential customers aim to solve. Donald Miller, author of ‘Building a Storybrand,’ really captured the importance of this concept when he said: ”Everybody wants to be taken somewhere. If we don’t tell people where we’re taking them, they’ll engage another brand.” Aim for the following in your brand messaging:
- Compelling Benefits
- Community Inclusion
A brand story helps speak directly to an individual and aids the reader in creating an emotional connection to the brand. Emotion and logic are everything to good copywriting, and that’s precisely why building out a brand story is critical to your Amazon listing creation.
Crafting your brand story can be helpful when you go to craft the Amazon Brand Story section of your listing. This fairly new feature available to Brand Registered sellers is a unique section located at the top of the Amazon A+ Content section. In this section, you’ll be able to tell customers your brand story, mission, and values to help shoppers emotionally resonate with your brand.
Your brand story can be used across multiple platforms and channels, such as your website, social media channels, landing pages, e-commerce listings, and more.
How to Harness the Power of E-Commerce Copywriting in Your Amazon Listing
Ditch the advice from agencies telling you to copy competitor listings. Now is the time to craft foundational messaging and a unique brand story that stands out on Amazon and stands the test of time. To do that, you’ll need a few pieces of vital copywriting. Below you’ll find some core statements you can leverage to create a better connection with buyers and audiences on and off Amazon.
#1 USP and Value Proposition – Clearly define your Unique Selling Proposition and your Value Proposition. What are the benefits to consumers of your brand and product? Try using this equation, and add a few power words to refine your USP: [Product] helps [buyer avatar] solve [problem] and get [value] in [what differentiated way].
E.g., The Brushd Beauty hot air brush helps busy moms dry their hair faster so they can tend to their busy lives more productively.
# 2 Clarify your messaging – Review your messaging for accuracy, clarity, and consistency. Remember that your messaging will be spread across many of your content sites as well as your Amazon listing.
#3 Create a brand guide – Brand experts can help you develop your messaging and package it in a high-quality guide. You can work with the same branding expert to create your logo, select your fonts and brand colors, and they can typically package this information in a well-laid-out guide that is yours to keep.
Things you’ve learned so far:
- What is listing optimization in Amazon, and do you need it
- What to avoid in listing optimization
- The first steps of Amazon Listing Optimization
- Unlock your ideal buyer avatar
- How to create foundational messaging
- How to harness e-commerce copywriting in your listing
What Are The Foundations of Amazon FBA Listing Optimization?
It’s important to understand Amazon’s Code of Conduct and the Amazon Style Guides, as you’ll likely reference both when creating your Amazon listing. Let’s review some of the foundations of an Amazon FBA listing.
#1 Amazon Code of Conduct – These are the terms you agree to when you choose to sell online in the Amazon marketplace. These terms are created by Amazon, and you are expected to proactively follow them. Failure to do so can mean a variety of things, such as a suspension or a listing suppression. Examples include review manipulation, false claims, restricted product sales, intentional competitor sabotage, and more.
#2 Amazon Style Guides – The style guides help sellers achieve consistency across the entire Amazon platform, but they are typically underutilized. The style guides are located in your Amazon Seller Central account and can be found by typing Amazon Style Guides into the search bar. The guides outline requirements for titles, A+ Content, detail pages, image sizing and aspect ratio, and more.
Now that you better understand the difference between Amazon’s Code of Conduct and the Amazon Style Guides, we’ll briefly touch on Amazon SEO.
What is Amazon SEO, and is it important to Amazon Listing Optimization?
If you want your products to be found on Amazon in 2023, you’ll want to give your best shot at Amazon SEO. Amazon Search Engine Optimization helps your products show up in Amazon SERPs. There are many different SEO strategies available to sellers. You can test specific sections of your listing to understand if your Amazon SEO is effective. Tools like Helium10 will help you understand organic rank, indexing, and other important SEO attributes.
The Amazon algorithm uses a scorecard to determine where your listing will be shown. The combination of a great product, advanced SEO, relevant highly searched keywords, healthy sales, and a positive conversion rate help score your listing positively in the algorithm to boost your product’s visibility. When all factors, including a great product, come together to produce positive results, this is known as the flywheel effect.
Advanced Amazon SEO and great copy must work in combination to prove the best results. In 2023 that may mean that individual words are repeated in the first half of the title to help boost indexing and potential ranking. Of course, there are no guarantees. You’ll have to do your own research to discover your preferred Amazon SEO tools. Remember that nearly every agency and guru have different schools of thought about Amazon SEO. The fact remains no one can guarantee an outcome on an elaborate algorithm, no matter how much they think they know about Amazon.
A great Amazon listing has highly searched and highly relevant keywords throughout the front and back of the listing. After you’ve done your research and prepared a list of the top most relevant, highly searched keywords, you’ll want to organize them by importance. Label the most essential keyword on your list as number 10, all the way down until the least important keyword as number 1. Consider these factors for your keyword research: relevancy, search volume, competing number of products, and position rank of your competitors.
How To Optimize The Amazon Title
The Amazon title is the most important driver of SEO on Amazon. To rank and index in Amazon search, you will need the best keywords, along with great copywriting, images, and a well-differentiated product. Did you know that in 2022 alone, over 5 billion people shopped on mobile in the USA? Optimizing your Amazon listing for mobile is a crucial step; here are some mobile title optimization tips:
- The title on mobile truncates around 80 characters. Place the most important keywords first to avoid truncation
- Add critical specifications after your brand name, such as pack quantities, vital measurements, and important product attributes
- Avoid clickbait; customers will click on your listing and scroll away
- Make it readable. You have seconds to get a mobile shopper to click on your lisitng rather than be distracted. Use a couple of power words, and make it count.
Read below to uncover more desktop Amazon title optimization tips.
Refer to the Amazon Style Guides for the number of allowable characters in the title. The most common Amazon title length is 200 characters, but that can change slightly depending on your category. It’s a good idea to refer back to the style guides to ensure your bullet points and description are in line with Amazon’s preferred styling. The style guides are found in your Amazon Seller Central and detail the listing parameters specific to your category of products.
The first 3 to 5 words of your Amazon product title are the most crucial. Double-check that you have the appropriate keywords in this crucial area and avoid trigger words. Avoid the use of commas in the title, as it’s believed that the algorithm does not split words where there are commas. Dashes are more acceptable, but remember to place a space before and after each dash. Refrain from using choice wording such as Best, Free, Bonus, etc.
Here’s a title template to help you get started: Brand Name [Brand Product Name] [Main Keyword] [Pack Quantity]- [Relevant and Highly Searched Keywords] [Descriptive Attributes] – [Size And Color]
Example Title: Beauty Babes – Hot Air Brush – At Home Blowout Straightening Comb – Hair Dryer – Dryer for Women – Hair Dry Hot Air Brush – Great for Salons and At Home w/ Ion Technology Ceramic Plates – Large Handle
The title should be easy to read and include at least one power word to entice the reader so long as that word is within the style guides and code of conduct. Having a readable title can significantly affect the number of clicks and sales your listing receives.
What are Backend Search Terms, and How are They Helpful?
Backend search terms are exactly as described; search terms are located in the back end of your product listing where upload takes place. The Backend search terms are an additional SEO section to help boost product visibility.
This area is the best place for remaining relevant keywords you could not fit into the front listing. Don’t include commas or plural forms, or trigger words. Place as many relevant keywords in the backend search terms as possible, and remember that you can update these words during holidays and different seasons. Consider adding search terms in different languages, such as Spanish and French, if relevant.
The debate about characters versus bytes in the backend search terms is a hot topic in the Amazon community. We now know that this area is counted by bytes. If you’re savvy, you can fit a few more search terms in this area with this vital Amazon SEO hack. Otherwise, you can fit up to 239 to 245 characters in this area.
How to Create Conversion-Worthy Amazon Bullet Points
Each category offers a different number of Amazon bullet points. The standard number is five, but some categories may see up to ten bullet points. Check with the Amazon style guides prior to writing each bullet point. Amazon states that it only indexes the first 1000 characters of all 5 bullet points. It’s important not to have too long or too short bullet points so that your listing can properly index and rank. Consumers will scan content so ensure your bullet points are roughly the same length. The visuals of text matter for both mobile and desktop shoppers.
Another crucial factor of Amazon listing optimization is that your product listing must be readable. Your Amazon listing should be persuasive and readable at a grade 7 to 8 level. Don’t use redundant me-too copy, and avoid complicated words that come from your internal team or manufacturer. If a potential shopper can’t read the copy in your listing, they are almost certain to scroll away instead of add to cart.
Before you get overwhelmed with keywords and writing compelling copy in your Amazon listing, start by writing without keyword placement. Add keywords after you’ve created each bullet point, and ensure they are readable in each sentence.
Bullet #1 The first Amazon bullet point should highlight your product’s unique selling proposition and biggest product benefit. Emphasize how your product solves consumers’ problems and potentially transforms lives.
Bullet 2 – 3 Highlight more product benefits and aim to create a comparison bullet point that highlights why your product is the better option. Don’t call out other brand names in these comparisons, and always avoid making any false claims. Tell customers how they will benefit from your product and seduce them with persuasive statements and influence. A compelling copy can make all the difference in your sales.
Example of a good Amazon bullet point: The Hair Dryer You’ll Wish You Bought Sooner – We understand the painstaking process of hair drying, and that’s why we crafted our premium Beauty Babes hot air brush to speed up drying time and add that smooth, sleek shine back to your beautiful hair. Drying doesn’t have to disappoint with Beauty Babes.
Check out this example of an Amazon listing with benefit-focused copywriting. Notice how the content is positioned around how the customer’s life will change and benefit from purchasing this product.
Bullet #4 Don’t forget to highlight the value a potential buyer may receive in buying your product. Use bullet #4 as an opportunity to call out how great a seasonal item, gift, or favorite holiday surprise your product would make.
For example, The Best All-In-One Drying and Styling GIft – Competitor products don’t offer the same great value that Beauty Babes offers. In your purchase today, you’ll get our famous hot air brush, a detangling brush, and a stunning black felt storage bag, all in one great gift set just in time for the holidays.
Bullet #5 Use bullet 5 to highlight unique brand identifiers like made in the USA or that your startup stands behind its products. Spotlight how your brand is different, confirming your USP statement. Avoid generic overused guarantee statements.
Amazon’s focus of business is the customer. Don’t offer a different warranty or guarantee statement that rivals Amazon’s guarantee. You can, however, try using statements like Risk-Free. Amazon will typically support customer returns, even without your product warranty. Adding your own warranty is not within Amazon’s code of conduct.
Be mindful of making false claims, and avoid using any trigger words that could potentially flag your listing for pesticides, prohibited product claims, or FDA warnings. These violations can be serious, challenging, and time-consuming to overcome.
Here are a few of the pesticide trigger words as presented from Amazon Seller Central:
Making unfounded product claims can also land your Amazon listing in hot water. A few of these that stand out are:
- Cancer Curing
- Alleviates Depression
- Stroke Prevention
Once you have crafted persuasive and compelling copy, you can plug in your keywords. Always maintain readability and remember to keep most of your keyword phrases intact. Compelling Amazon listing optimization offers clear, concise bullet points and draws out the benefits of the product. Your Amazon images need to be striking and scroll-stopping, and your Amazon A+ content needs to be eye-catching and persuasive.
How to Tell Your Brand Story in the HTML Description
The Amazon product description is the area at the bottom of the product detail page following the 5 bullet points where you’ll find more space for your brand story and special product details. . Alternatively, this space can capture the Amazon Brand Story and A+ graphics and images. HTML Code is a specific type of formatting code Amazon requires for you to properly upload your description in the back end. Amazon did mention early this year that it would remove HTML formatting, but as of Dec 2022, we have not seen that change. A major change to the HTML Description came into place in the summer of 2021. Excessive HTML code is not permitted; only line breaks (<br>)
Avoid formatted HTML such as:
Numbers and Bullets
Tell a story in the Amazon product description that is aimed at convincing a shopper why they need your product to help solve their problems. Start the story in your Amazon product description with an open-loop hook. Hooks should pique curiosity but offer precise details so that when scrollers continue reading, they aren’t disappointed by clickbait. A good open-loop hook does not finish a thought; it compels your audience to read more about your product and brand.
Add a section that highlights your brand story in a unique and compelling manner. The description area is a great place to restate prime benefits shoppers can’t live without. Finally, add a how-to, top tips, or an FAQ section in the Amazon product description that addresses commonly asked questions in similar product listings.
Amazon FBA Listing Optimization: Images Are Everything
You can find Amazon image requirements by searching Amazon images in Amazon Seller Central. Always follow the proper size guidelines (2000 x 2000), use a white background, and be sure to use clear and concise infographics to help emphasize your product’s biggest benefits. Here is a brief breakdown:
- The product must fill at least 85% of the image.
- Images must accurately represent the item listed.
- Images can’t display Amazon logos, trademarks, or words that contain Amazon, Prime, etc.
- Images must not include any badges used on Amazon, including the Amazon’s Choice or Premium Choice badge.
- Images must be in focus, professionally lit, and with realistic color, with no pixelation or jagged edges.
- Images can’t contain nudity or be considered sexually suggestive or inappropriate.
- Pixel dimensions of at least 1000 or larger in either height or width.
- JPEG formats are preferred, but TIFF and GIF file formats are accepted in sRGB or CMYK color mode.
- File names must contain the Amazon ASIN, followed by a period and the file extension. No spaces, dashes, or additional characters are permitted in the file name.
When it comes to graphic design, there are several tips that can help you understand what makes a good quality Amazon image and what does not.
#1 Follow your brand guide – One of the most useful and underutilized Amazon graphics tips is to carry your brand guide from your other digital assets, like your website or social media, to the Amazon listing. Following your brand guide in your Amazon listing helps you build brand authority and also helps your brand be remembered across multiple platforms. The image below is from the Brushd Beauty website. You’ll see that the fonts and color guide are carried from the website to the Amazon listing.
Keeping consistent across platforms is important as it ensures that your brand is remembered and recognized. Your Amazon listing is no different, and following your brand guide in your listing creates a cohesive, responsive aesthetic that your audience may appreciate.
#2 White space – Balancing white space with the elements of graphic design is paramount to a design’s appeal. Use just enough white space so that the image is not cluttered and therefore well balanced.
#3 Lifestyle images and callouts – Lifestyle images help draw attention to the massive benefit using your product holds for potential buyers. Shoppers should be able to determine how your product can help them simply by viewing these types of images in your Amazon listing.
#4 Infographics – Your Amazon images should also include 1-2 infographics to highlight the unique features of your product. Images are key to your success on Amazon, and these tips should help guide you in selecting stunning graphics for your Amazon listing.
What is A/B Testing and How Can it Benefit Amazon Listing Optimization?
Split testing helps people determine which pieces of their content are more likely to convert in sales. Content types can vary. Some examples of items people may choose to split test are the Amazon listing images, the Amazon title, bullet points, Amazon A+ Content, and A+ Brand Story. You’ll employ split testing services that lend look-alike audiences to help you determine which options may prove the most successful for your Amazon listing.
Try to remove any prejudice you may have towards your listing when provided with your split-testing results. An Amazon listing is not about you; it’s about conversion, so heed the results with seriousness and make solid business decisions based on the information you are provided.
Final Amazon Lisitng Optimization Tips
Before anything else, the uniqueness of your product and brand matters most. In today’s climate muti-targetted approach that includes a robust marketing plan on and off of Amazon, a highly differentiated product, and a strong sense of brand authority and community will distinguish lasting brands that are profitable from me-too brands that come and go rapidly on Amazon. Research your product, know it as well as you know your audience, develop next-level branding, and craft compelling, persuasive copy to have a winning chance at successful brand building.
Pro Listing Tips:
- Research should be the foundation of your process and where you begin your Amazon listing creation.
- Fully edit your listing before uploading. Ensure the language is native to the marketplace, and double-check for grammar and literals.
- Review your backend to ensure it meets the necessary requirements.
- Keep a spreadsheet and record any changes you make to your listing. Even minor changes can take a few days to settle into the algorithm. Keeping tabs on changes will help you understand what is helping your conversions and what may be slowing sales.
- Update your backend search terms with highly relevant and searched terms depending on the season or approaching holiday. Don’t forget to use different languages like Spanish or French that consider your buying audience.
- Emojis are technically not within the Amazon Style Guides, but you will see that many sellers and agencies choose to use them in their bullet points. Ask yourself if emojis take away from your brand messaging. If emojis may hamper your brand voice, it may be a good idea to reconsider adding them.
- Review brand analytics to unlock potential keywords to dominate your competition.
- Find reputable podcasts and attend the odd event so you can stay current.
- Employee virtual assistants when you can afford to, and begin to grow a team. Contrary to popular belief, you can’t do everything!
- Think about an exit from the time you start your business. That means healthy books and wise business decisions. Employ the help of trusted coaches and mentors but remember they are only there to guide you.
Your Amazon listing is vital to your success on the platform and should be reviewed in different phases of the trajectory of your sales. Amazon listing optimization is not a set-it-and-forget-it form of optimization. Understanding what keywords are ranking and indexing is paramount. Which images are the best for maximum conversion and what elements of copywriting are adding to customer satisfaction or decreasing satisfaction should be reviewed on an ongoing basis.
Check out our Amazon Listing Optimization Case Studies, and contact us today for a free Amazon listing audit. When was the last time you optimized your Amazon listing? Comment below!
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