Amazon Product What?  Targeting.  Oh, Yes.  It’s War Out There & It Just Got Meaner

Let’s keep this to a quick read.  

What is Amazon Product Targeting in one sentence?

You can choose which category and/or which competitor products your Amazon Ads appear on.

So what?

If you know there is another seller who’s raking in the cash but your product is better, offers more, is cheaper and has better ratings, well you can now place your product on that competitor’s page so a shopper sees it before they buy.

Want another benefit?

If your product bundles well with other items you can fix it so that your Ad appears on those other product pages.  So, you’re selling hiking boot wax, and now you can place your Ad on the best-selling hiking boot pages.  Got to be good huh?

So, why don’t you know about it already?

Well, this strategy has been exclusive to Vendor Central accounts; those sellers who supply directly to Amazon, but it is coming to Seller Central, oh yes, just when you thought life was good, it just got better… or has it?  Let’s see.

As of today (28th November 2018), it is only available as a BETA test for invited sellers but it is going to be cascaded down to all sellers who can currently pay for PPC Ads.

Now you know what it’s all about, here’s how to do it…

How to Add Target Products to Your PPC Ad Campaign

If you have it in your seller central account it will look like this:

Press continue to begin your new Sponsored Products campaign.

Choose Manual targeting and scroll down to find this section…

Select Product targeting which brings up this box…

You can target specific categories or individual ASINs.  We will look at the categories option first.

You can click “Suggested” and Amazon will deliver a bunch of results where it thinks your Ads are best placed.  Alternatively, you can click “Search” and manually add your target categories, as shown above.

You can click on each one and keep refining it until you have filtered down to the specific category you want, in the same manner that you would when first adding a new product listing.  You can specify more than one category.

For individual product targeting you will click the second tab highlighted below:

If you have already entered your ASIN, Amazon will populate across suggested products to target, and these will appear under the “Suggested” tab, seen in the image above.

You can choose to search for ASINs if you wish to check out more than those being suggested by Amazon, or you can enter the competitors you wish to focus on by adding them to the “Enter List” tab. 

If you don’t know who to target, simply search for that category on Amazon and see who shows up in the ads and organic placing.  Then think, who can you beat?  Which product has fewer features and benefits, has a lower rating score, or higher price?

When you add them to the list, each ASIN will appear for you to double-check that it is the correct one, and then when you confirm that it is, it will appear with any other items you have added below.  It will look like this:

Where Will Your Amazon Sponsored Ad Appear?

It will appear in two places; between the bullet points and description of your competitor’s ASIN, and further down below the description.  It will look like this:

Category Vs Individual Product Targeting – What’s the Difference?

If you choose a category then your Ad will appear on all the listings within that category subject to your bid and daily budget.  If you target a specific ASIN, your Ad will only appear with that specific product.

Refining Ad-Bidding

Click the Blue “Refine” button to the right of each category, as shown below.

And the screen will expand to look like this…

If you click the “Brand” drop-down box “Select” a quantity of associated brands will appear…

You can filter this down to target specific brands within your chosen category, rather than individual ASINs.  In the above example, if you select Dunkin’ Donuts and Germ Guardian (nice mix of brands!) your Ads will appear whenever a shopper lands on one of their products.  But wait… you need to refine further.

You can set the price range and product ratings of that brand to dictate the specific factors that will trigger your Ad.  If a brand has a product that is more expensive than yours but others that are cheaper, you can set your Ads to only appear when a product is more expensive.  Likewise, if some of their products have less than your average rating (example 4-stars), your Ad will only appear with products of a worse rating (example 3-stars).

Should You End Amazon PPC Ad Campaigns?

No.  For a couple of reasons.  Firstly, you might experience higher ACoS with the new product targeting ads.  Which brings me on to the second reason; people may arrive at a product page differently for example, from an email sales funnel, or a social media external link, therefore they have a pretty strong intent to buy that product, so your chances of a sale are slim.

In contrast, a shopper searching Amazon for a product will want to see a range of items that they can shortlist to read more.  They are actively interested in, and open to, products that they may not have considered yet. The intentions of both shoppers can be very different, so, if you have the opportunity we recommend the following:

  • Maintain your PPC Ad Campaigns
  • Run a Category/Brand Specific Product Targeting Campaign
  • And Run an ASIN Specific Targeting Campaign

See what works for you the best.

Thanks once again for your time.  Feel free to reach out with any questions.

Best of luck!



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