In my last post, I talked about how to distinguish between good and bad PPC targets. In this post, I’m going to address what to do with these targets once you’ve identified them so that you can optimize your Amazon PPC campaigns and make them as efficient as possible.

Bad Targets: High ACOS

If you see a target that has some sales but an ACOS that is higher than you would like, you might be able to reduce the ACOS while still getting sales from this target. The first thing you should do is lower the bid for this target to see if you can get cheaper clicks. It’s important to remember that lowering bids should be done gradually (we typically recommend $0.25 decreases every couple of days) so that you don’t throw off the Amazon algorithm. Many sellers make the mistake of drastically pulling back, and doing so can lead to significantly reduced impressions for this target. If you can get impressions and sales with a lower CPC, then continue to decrease your bids until you’ve achieved the desired ACOS.

Bad Targets: High Click to Sale Ratio

If you can’t get your ACOS under control for a specific target, or if you have a target that has a high click to sale ratio (i.e. a lot of clicks without any sales), then you’ll want to flag it and add it as a negative keyword to your PPC campaigns (when you add a “negative” target, you’re telling Amazon to never use that target). We recommend adding the target as a “negative phrase” if it is a keyword target so that you weed out other variations of the keyword, unless it’s a “seed keyword” (I’ll go into more detail on what this means in another post), in which case you’ll want to add the bad keyword as a “negative exact.”

Good Targets

Hopefully, you don’t have too many bad targets (although remember the 80-20 rule), and you’re able to identify a handful of gems on which you can focus your Amazon advertising budget. If you followed our suggested PPC approach, then you started out with “automatic” and “broad match” campaigns. Once these campaigns have revealed successful targets, you should create new “phrase match” and “exact match” campaigns utilizing these targets. For these new campaigns, you can be a little more aggressive with your bids to make sure you are getting enough impressions. Just like the older campaigns, these new campaigns will take some time to optimize, and you’ll definitely want to keep an eye on them to make sure they’re producing sales at the desired ACOS. If you find that some targets have a really low (i.e. really good) ACOS, then try increasing the bids to get more impressions, and hopefully, more sales. Remember, PPC sales drive your organic sales, especially in the beginning!