Amazon PPC Strategies to increase your sales


Amazon PPC Strategies

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Hi, and welcome. Today let’s talk about PPC strategies. Before we get started, like always, I want to thank you for being here. Whether you’re watching on YouTube, or listening on iTunes, or just simply reading or watching on the blog.

I think when you think about PPC it’s one of the really misunderstood concepts of marketing your product and brand on Amazon. I think so many people get this wrong.

Let me just kind of go into what I think they’re doing wrong. Let me talk about what I think you should do well. Then let’s talk about some specific strategies and techniques that you can use to build your own brand through Amazon PPC.

What I think most people do is, they go through their mind. They launch a product and say “Well, I got to do advertising. I feel like I’m being proactive. I’m doing something.” I think what happens is that you’re not putting yourself in the shoes, or the eyes, of your perspective buyers.

I think, really, when you are not making any sales, it isn’t because you start doing PPC you’re just going to automatically going to start making sales. It really doesn’t work that way.

You have to think, and really get some reviews first. I believe a minimum of 25 before I ever turn on PPC, and hopefully maybe more because whatever your product is doing, if your product is converting and selling okay now, PPC is just going to enhance that. If you’re not getting any sales, and it’s not converting, PPC is not some magic silver bullet that is automatically going to generate sales. I think most people get that backwards.

I think most people do that completely out of order. That’s why they try PPC and they don’t get returns.

Get Reviews First

If you get at least 25 reviews, or as many as you can, to get started first and then turn on PPC, I think it will add as much as 30% of sales to your business. That’s what I get across the board with my products. I get as much as 200% positive ROI. That’s not sales. That’s profit from the product. Sometimes it’s not as much, and sometimes on occasion it ends up being more than that. That’s somewhere around the norm for what I’m doing.

The conversions are sometimes a little bit higher because, again, those are people that are seeking out the product. Again, I’m getting this higher conversions and that higher ROI simply because everything is converting well. The pictures are optimized. The copy is optimized. Right product, right market. Then this is just gravy on top.

I think I would ask you to reconsider the strategy doing PPC right off the bat because I think it’s a waste of money. Now, somebody may end up making money on that, and may disagree with me which is okay. However, I think if you build your foundation first, the things we just mentioned, and then go ahead and turn on PPC, I think you will ultimately get more sales in the long run.

The good news about PPC is that, from an Amazon standpoint, it’s very easy to manage. I’ve done some work with Google AdWords, and Facebook ads, and different things like that. That’s a pretty complicated nut to crack, and to get right, and to get a positive ROI. Because there are so few features within the Amazon PPC, really all that you’re doing is you’re telling it what words to show up for. It’s pretty easy.

Choose Manual or Automatic

Really, given that, you have 2 choices. You’re can do things manually, you’re going to enter in whatever words you think are workable, or then you can have them actually automatically target those words for you, which is trying to do all the work for you, which they’re going for.

My personal opinion is I like the manual approach because I really don’t believe the computer’s ever going to be able to out think a human. I think it costs more and I think it’s better for Amazon than the seller. Where you really come out ahead as a human versus the automated software from Amazon, is if you go somewhere like Merchant Words, is the website. Very inexpensive website to have and maintain.

You enter in your search words, or words you think people are searching for. They’ll give you some of your main search words by the quantity of searches. Typically, not always but typically, the higher search words are the words that you would enter in your 5 main key words when you’re setting up your product.

Target the Right Keywords

Where I think, really, one of the under-appreciated values of something like Merchant Words, is that it’s going to show you lots of lesser quantity search words. Those are words that you scrape off the website, copy off the website, and then put into your PPC campaign because, again, the value of PPC is obviously you don’t pay for any clicks until somebody clicks on the words themselves.

Once you have everything set up, I think you kind of start out with the shotgun approach. You put all the words you can you think are valuable into your campaign. Now, over time, give it a few weeks to run. The hardest thing is not changing every hour if you don’t get enough results.

Watch Your Data

You’ve got to get enough statistical information and data to be able to make an educated choice on “Does this key word, is it paying for itself or is it not?” I think people pull the trigger too much, and then stop their campaign, or eliminate words too quickly. I overpay for my key words in the beginning because I don’t care. I’m running a marathon. I’m not running a sprint here. I’m willing to do a little bit of quote “investment spending” in the beginning to get this up and running.

Give it Time

If you can get this up and running and going, then you’re going to have some words that are going to lose some money, but give it 2, 3, 4, weeks. 5, 6 weeks even. Whatever it is. Give it enough time to accumulate some data. Then determine whether you want to keep that word or not. It’s kind of nice. In the dashboard they’ll give you a listing. They’ll show you how many clicks, what the cost per click was, then how many sales you had.

Then you take your amount of sales and figure out what your profit is, then divide it by what you put in and see how much money you’re making off of that particular item. It’s really a pretty simplistic thing to manage, which is another reason why I don’t think you need some of the automated tools to be able to manage your internal PPC. However, to be able to get an extra 30% of your sales, which is what I get in most cases, I think it’s very very worthwhile to be able to go in and do this.

Keep it Simple and Enjoy Your Success

To me, not a hard thing to do. I see people over complicate this and they want to Google add words, or Facebook add words, and think they’re going to add all these complex things, and twists, and turns. I think you well exceed the value of what you’re doing and hit the point of diminished returns sooner than later.

Again, everything that I try and suggest and teach to my students is to keep things simple. I don’t think this is any exception. Just again, get you some reviews, get that up and running, make sure your product is optimized. Make sure the titles fit the particular key words. Make sure the pictures are good. All the normal things that you should do anyway.

Then when you have some reviews, then turn on PPC. Even if you’re only breaking even PPC has value because it’s helping in your conversions. It’s helping you maintain that sales listing on some of those key words. I’ve experimented back and forth and turned it on and off to see if it would have a drop on certain key words and certain things, and absolutely does.

My best interpretation here, in the Amazon algorithm, is that a PPC sale counts the same as an organic sale. Again, even if you’re losing a little bit, it’s worth it to maintain that position if you feel that it’s helping in your overall organic sales. 

Anyway, that’s Amazon PPC. Pretty simple. Pretty straightforward. I think if you follow that strategy you’ll get the most out of it. Again, thank all of you for being here on the Prime Report Podcast. Thanks for watching on YouTube. Thanks for listening on iTunes. Look forward to seeing you on the next podcast. Thanks.


Already an Amazon Seller?  Interested in a little help, maybe validation of your product and market or need some marketing direction?  Then take a look at my 1 on 1 coaching.  I accept a limited number of people into my coaching program.  Click here to learn more

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Mark Scott Adams is a serial entrepreneur who has started, built and sold six businesses.  He has sold millions of dollars of physical products on and offline over the last two decades.  He is currently a speaker, author and successful Amazon Seller.  To take his free amazon sellers training click here.   To Get his free product checklist list click here


  • Mark

    April 7, 2016

    Hey Mark,

    Great video. I am in competitive market of health and personal care where I have been private labeling a fish oil product for around 5 months. My product has 45 reviews 4.9/5 with a fully optimized page and have been doing PPC for quite some time. I have no trouble getting the traffic and clicks because its a popular product, but its hard for me to convert majority of the time. Are you familiar with a competitive market like this and also what do you suggest? More reviews? Thank you!


    • Mark Adams

      April 8, 2016

      Hard to say with so little information, but if you are getting plenty of clicks then its probably a combination of your pictures and copy are not converting or your keywords don’t match what people are searching for. Experiment and see what happens. Good luck.

  • Dave

    February 21, 2016

    What s a good/average acos rate for PPC?

    • Mark Adams

      February 21, 2016

      Dave, the real answer is it depends a lot on your retail price. Higher priced items usually have higher returns as there is more margin and the opposite fo rlower priced items.

      I think is even OK to operate at a loss in the beginning while you are collecting data. Then to break even and as you become more knowledgable with your product to as much as 2-300% is not uncommon, but again there are a lot of factors that determine the acos or roi. Good luck

  • Ahmed

    January 28, 2016

    Hello Mark,

    When do you turn off PPC that will get you organic sales? Once you get organic sales, you don’t need PPC anymore right?

    • Mark Adams

      January 29, 2016

      If you’re making more sales and a positive return on your investment, why would you ever turn it off? PPC is an investment, not an expense when done properly. It helps you rankings by giving you more sales, better conversion rates and more reviews…you business could be as much as 30% by using PPC

  • youcef az

    December 1, 2015

    Hi Mark,
    I am just starting my PL journey, my product went live two days ago (still 0 sales)
    I started two PPC campaings one day ago (auto campaign and a manual campaign) with 0 reviews as of now.
    I am an international seller, so I don’t have family and friends in the US that I can ask for reviews (the 20 reviews that talked about) before starting PPC .
    So, with these conditions in mind, what is the best way for me to get those 20 first reviews? what do you recommend?
    Thanks for all these good informations

    • Mark Adams

      December 1, 2015

      Hi Yousef: There are several groups that can provide reviews…google getting amazon reviews or similar and several should come up.. Good luck