A time comes when the critical thing matters the most. If you are an Amazon seller, you understand that to sell on Amazon successfully, you must know and apply specific ranking strategies. There are many ‘how to’ formulas out there that try to explain various ranking strategies. It is good to pursue them and find out what works for you. This is because what works for another may not necessarily work for you. However, Understanding Amazon’s ranking algorithm is the ultimate game changer. It is the sure way to succeeding as an Amazon seller. It enables you to forge your own optimization strategies that set you apart from your competitors. The Amazon ranking algorithm is so fundamental that your success or failure literally depends on how well you understand it. Understand the rules of the game and apply them with your unique moves and experience unlimited success. To succeed at tweaking the influential factors within your control, you have to be well acquainted with the logic behind ranking algorithm.
Why Ranking High Means Better Sales
Most buyers hardly search for products beyond the first three pages. This is true for Google as well as Amazon. Unlike Google, which displays just ten results per page, Amazon displays sixteen. It follows that a product ranked among the forty eight of the first three pages of the search results stands a much higher chance of purchase than those ranked in lower pages. Therefore, to succeed at Amazon as a seller, focus your ranking efforts at hitting the top three pages. The higher, the better.
Stepping in Amazon’s Shoes
If you intend to understand Amazon’s ranking criteria well, step in their shoes and learn why they do what they do. Yours is a balancing act, because you also have to step into the buyer’s shoes to know their search preferences. Amazon’s major objective is to have as maximize purchases from its site. This they do by displaying products in form of search results with a view that buyers are likely to click on them and place an order. Amazon applies two steps to achieve this goal, as explained below.
1. Filtering Matching Products
The first step is to filter matching products according to possible search queries by users. It would be very hectic for a user to scroll through all the over 470 million products on Amazon. It is incumbent upon Amazon to narrow down the results, based on the user’s query, to the specific category of the product needed. For a product to be eligible for selection as a result for a search query, it must have all the keywords posted in the search query. In this case, various aspects of a product are captured. These include the product, description, brand, seller’s name, bullet points and color, among others. As a seller who is intend on achieving a higher ranking of your product, you must fill in this information regarding your product to stand a chance of appearing among the top results.
2. The Matching Products Are Ranked According to Purchase Likelihood
The various factors considered by Amazon during this second step are categorized into two: Performance factors, which show ho popular with the customers a product is, and relevance factors, which show best a product matches a search query. Performance factors are based on CTR (Click Through Rate), rate of conversion and actual sales, while relevance factors depend on the keywords used and their positioning. Thus, Amazon’s logic here is to show users ‘performing’ products, with a view that they will continue performing, as well as products that fit in the search query in terms of keywords.
CTR shows how often users click on a product after it has been displayed to them. The higher the CTR, the more popular a product is, and vice versa. Most clicked items are raked higher than those less clicked. On the other hand, conversion is about the second click by a user after making up his mind to purchase a product. Amazon’s logic is that a product that has been clicked the most and sold the most is more likely to sell more, especially to new users. Hence the reason why it is ranked higher. It should be noted that CTR and conversion rate go together. A product cannot have a very high CTR and very low conversion rate. This only implies that users are very impressed with a product at first glance, but that is where it stops. It means first impressions are not good enough to warrant the subsequent purchase of the product. Such products that attract high CTR but very low conversions eventually drop in ranking.
CTR is influenced by such factors as rating, feature preview, cost of delivery, availability, title, brand, image, price, FBA/prime, product category and bestseller label, among other factors.
As a seller, you can really boost your product sales, not only by observing the above factors, but also by how you choose your keywords. You may not be able to directly influence sales, but at least you have control over the factors that influence the sales. So, be aware that both relevance and performance factors matter. They are very complementary in their contribution to your products ranking.