Amazon 102 – Amazon SEO: How to Be Found in Amazon Search

amazon seo

As of July 2015, Amazon had over 491 million product listings and 32 million unique items for sale on its site from 1.4M sellers, and one of the biggest concerns we hear from Amazon sellers is “How in the world can I ensure that people find my products when they search for them?”

But just showing up isn’t enough. If you’re like the majority of shoppers out there, when you search for a product or a website, you rarely go past the first page – in fact, one study suggested that less than 10% of Google searchers went past the first page of results. Given that information, it can seem like a daunting task to have anyone find your products, but don’t worry – it comes down to just a handful of SEO tricks.

SEO Basics

SEO or “Search Engine Optimization” is the process of improving how high you show up in search results. When you hear “SEO”, it’s probably being referred to web search engines like Google or Yahoo, but marketplaces like Amazon also have their own internal search engines that can be optimized. Each search engine or marketplace creates its own priorities for how it displays search results, so in this article we’ll explore only Amazon’s.

It’s All About Relevancy

Amazon’s search result algorithm tries to determine how relevant products are to what was being searched for, and relevancy comes down to basically two things for Amazon – WHAT the product is and HOW customers respond to it. There are 8 things that you can do to affect the “WHAT” and “HOW” to improve your Amazon SEO:

1. Title – “WHAT”

Why It Matters:
-It’s the clearest description of what your product is
-It’s the first thing a customer reads
-Amazon directly uses the words in the title to determine relevancy

How To Optimize It:
-Clearly describe your product at the beginning of the product title
-Use words you think a shopper may use
-Use proper spelling and capitalization
-Don’t use the same word many times
-Add secondary descriptive words and your brand name at the end so that the more important words show up first

Good Examples:
-Vintage Gold Necklace with 14-inch Chain by Jane’s Jewelry
-Custom Rustic Wedding Invitation – 5×7″ in Blue
-Baby’s Bib with Cars and Stars – For All Ages – Bibs2Go

Bad Examples:
-14-inch Necklace – Jane’s Gold and Vintage
-wedding invitation, yellow invitation, rustic invitation for weddings
-OMG Super cute bib for babies that has cars and stars on it fits everyone

2. Search Keywords – “WHAT”

Why They Matter:
-They help Amazon determine what your product is outside of just the title
-They let you get your product in front of more customers who aren’t searching for your exact specific product

How To Optimize Them:
-Use all keyword slots you’re allowed
-Be a mix of specific and general
-Put yourself in the shoes of customers – if you wouldn’t use them yourself to search for your product, don’t use them
-Repeat only the most important words from your title
-Put the most important words first in the keywords just like the title, but the order of the keywords themselves do not matter
-List synonyms and variations of your product
-Search for your product on Amazon to get ideas of what else exists – the suggestions are based on actual Amazon searches
-Amazon ignores commas and combines words into search terms
-Don’t worry about capitalization or adding an “s” at the end to make them plural – they’re treated the same
-If you have room, you can add a few misspellings of keywords, but the number of people searching for a misspelling will be far less than people searching for a real keyword

Good Examples:
-gold vintage jewelry necklace yellow vintage
-paper weddings invitation
-cute boys girls baby babies cars homemade

Bad Examples:
-gold necklace, vintage necklace, yellow necklace, rustic necklace, gold jewelry, vintage jewelry, gift for mom, gifts for her
-custom wedding invitation, rustic wedding invitation, custom invitations, handmade invitations, handmade wedding invitations
-bib, baby’s bib, girl’s bib, boy’s bib, bib with cars, boy’s bib with cars, homemade bibs

3. Category – “WHAT”

Why It Matters:
-Amazon uses category to help show products based on searches
-Customers can filter results by category

How To Optimize It:
-Put your products in the proper category
-Be as specific as possible

4. Additional Attributes – “WHAT”

Why It Matters:
-Customers can filter by additional attributes
-More attributes indicate higher data quality to Amazon and hedge against future issues

How To Optimize Them:
-Fill out as many additional attributes as you can
-Be as specific as possible

5. Images – “HOW”

Why They Matter:
The number or quality of images does not directly improve search ranking, but images help indirectly because:
-They help grab customer interest and lead to clicks, which improve relevancy
-They help convert sales from your pages, which improves relevancy

How To Optimize Them:
Show a variety of images:
1. The plain shot – Your product clearly visible against a plain white background – it’s the best way to show your product for what it is and the plain background helps show off the details, even for a white product
2. The close-up – A zoomed-in shot of the fine details of your product – this image can help show off the texture of your item and the quality of your work (note that if your image is at least 1000px x 1000px then customers can zoom in anyway)
3. The lifestyle – Your product in its “natural element” – this image is perfect for a piece of art or clothing to help the customer get a sense of what it’ll look like in action
4. The container – If your product comes in a nice-looking box or case, showing an image of that can help complete the circle for a customer

6. Description – “HOW”

Why It Matters:
The description does not directly improve search ranking, but it does help indirectly because it helps convert sales from your pages, which improves relevancy

How To Optimize It:
-Be just as robust as if you were actually having a conversation with someone
-Be a mix of both sales-focused and technically descriptive
-Put the most important information first
-Ensure that all of someone’s questions are answered by what you write: How big is the product? Who is it for? How did you make it? Why is it better than something else? What is it made out of?
-Use proper grammar and spelling
-Match your brand style

7. Reviews – “HOW”

Why It Matters:
The reviews on the product do not directly improve search ranking, but it does help indirectly because:
-They help convert sales from your pages, which improves relevancy
-Customers can filter by average rating of products

How To Optimize It:
-Actively solicit reviews of your products from previous customers
-Respond to any customer complaints
-Adjust your product or business based on the reviews

8. Price – “HOW”

Why It Matters:
Price does not directly improve search ranking, but it does help indirectly because:
-They help convert sales from your pages, which improves relevancy

-Customers can filter by price

How To Optimize It:
-Price your product appropriately based on your business and market conditions
-Adjust your price as needed

Take a look at our Amazon 104 – Setting Appropriate Prices article for additional tips on setting prices.

What Doesn’t Improve Search Rankings

-Order of keywords
-Listing count
-Your location relative to the customer

Final Tips

-Test, test, and test some more
-Don’t change a lot of things at once – try a few things at a time to see what works
-Give it time – improvements in search results don’t happen overnight
-If you get stuck, don’t be afraid to send us an email at and we’ll be happy to answer any questions!