Beginner’s Guide to Becoming an Amazon PPC Expert

May 6, 2021
Posted in News
May 6, 2021 Alex Smythe

Beginner’s Guide to Becoming an Amazon PPC Expert

Running and managing successful PPC campaigns require much more than an advertising budget. It involves endless hours of activities like keyword research, competitive analysis, ad optimization, split testing, performance tracking. That’s why the demand for PPC experts will continue to soar. 

Amazon PPC experts have a unique blend of skills, tools, and experience to manage and run profitable PPC campaigns. Plus, they help businesses to achieve their advertising goals and maximize their ROI. 

The good thing is that you don’t need any formal degree to manage your Amazon PPC campaign or become an expert. There are tons of learning resources and tools that can help you achieve results quickly. However, you must be willing to apply the learnings to daily PPC management tasks and gain experience as you progress.  

Are you looking to start a career in Amazon PPC or become an expert? 

This guide has everything you need to kickstart your journey to becoming an Amazon PPC expert. 

Let’s get to it!

Understand the Fundamentals of Amazon PPC

The first step to becoming an Amazon PPC expert is to understand the basics of Amazon advertising.

Amazon is a very competitive marketplace with millions of sellers. And Amazon’s advertising solutions enable marketers and sellers to boost visibility, increase sales and stay ahead of the competition. 

Like other digital networks, Amazon advertising revolves around a Pay-per-click (PPC) model where marketers pay when potential shoppers click on their ads.

Before Amazon launched PPC advertising in 2012, marketers relied on search engine optimization (SEO) to boost visibility. Today, SEO is still crucial for improving your product ranking, but PPC delivers faster results for brands and marketers.  

With Amazon PPC, you can improve visibility, attract the right customers and increase conversions. Overall,  marketers and businesses rely on PPC to increase sales and drive business growth. 

Amazon PPC advertising may appear simple. However, it goes beyond creating a professional seller account and throwing some dollars into the mix. You need an Amazon campaign management strategy and skillset to run successful campaigns.

What It Means To Become an Amazon Expert

Because PPC advertising has the potential to deliver a high return on investment (ROI), PPC experts are in high demand. That’s because they have the tools, expertise, and experience to maximize campaign budgets and achieve results. 

Here’s how PPC experts help businesses improve advertising effectiveness. PPC managers…

  •  Set advertising goals and design strategies for campaign execution
  • Research profitable and high-ranking keywords relevant to business and industry
  • Leverage negative keywords to minimize ad spend
  • Create or optimize ad copy to improve conversions.
  • Measure campaign performance and analyze competitors’ activities etc

Types of Amazon PPC Ads

If you are an Amazon PPC expert, the chances are that you will work with clients with different business needs, advertising goals, and budgets. So it’s imperative to fully understand the different types of Amazon PPC ads and the best scenarios to use them. 

Let’s review the three types of Amazon PPC ads for marketers, sellers, and brands, 

1. Sponsored Brand Ads

Sponsored Brand Ads are great for merchants and brands that have a comprehensive portfolio of products. This ad type lets businesses increase visibility and increase sales for their brand and multiple products. 

Sponsored Brand Ads appear in customer shopping search results. It also features your brand logo, headline, and wide range of products. Clicking on the brand logo redirects customers to the store to find other products they are interested in. Similarly, clicking on any product in the ad redirects customers to the product page. 

For established brands, Sponsored Brand Ads serve multiple purposes. They help businesses target new buyers, retain existing customers or improve brand recall.  And many times, companies use this ad type to drive sales for tons of different products. You can easily introduce your customers to other products they didn’t know about.

Sponsored Brands Ads lets users measure how many first-time customers or the number of total first-time sales their brand has earned on Amazon in the last year. They are available for book vendors, brands,  agencies, professional sellers who have enrolled in Amazon Brand Registry. 

2. Sponsored Product Ads

Sponsored Product Ads are the most common types of Amazon PPC ads. These ads appear in shopping results or product pages and help sellers boost their product visibility and sales. 

When you launch campaigns, Amazon shows your ads to shoppers searching for similar products as yours. Their advertising algorithm automatically targets buyers or serves ads to customers based on products and shopping queries.

Sponsored Product Ads typically show product title, product images, star ratings, and the Amazon Prime badge.

 These ad elements appear at the right time and thus entice potential buyers to check out the product. 

With Sponsored Product Ads, you can choose your preferred targeting options, campaign budget, and bids. And if you want to drive product awareness or boost sales for your new product,  this ad type is a perfect fit. 

Sponsored Product Ads are available for book vendors, brands, professional sellers, agencies  Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) authors. 

3. Sponsored Display Ads 

If you want to engage audiences on or off Amazon, Sponsored Display Ads is the perfect ad type. The beautiful thing about using this ad type is that you can show your products to customers even after they’ve left Amazon. 

Sponsored Display Ads appear on the Amazon home page, product detail pages, shopping result pages, and third-party apps and websites. However, you must have a Featured Offer or products in stock for your ads to appear. Marketers and brands use this ad type to boost brand visibility across multiple sales channels. 

Sponsored Display Ads supports three audience targeting options.

Product Targeting

This targeting option lets you engage audiences who are checking out products or categories similar to yours. 

Amazon Shopping Interest 

This targeting option allows marketers to engage audiences whose buying activity and behavior shows they might have interest in their products.  

Views Remarketing

With this targeting option, you can re-engage audiences who have previously viewed your product detail page or that of similar products and categories. 

Sponsored Display Ads are available to professional sellers who have enrolled in Amazon Brand Registry agencies and vendors. 

Choosing the Right Keywords

Keywords are search terms, phrases that customers use to search for products on Amazon. Using relevant and profitable keywords boosts your ranking and lets users find your ads when you search Amazon using those search terms. 

Amazon supports multiple keyword match types. So you can select the one that provides maximum exposure and ranking for your products. 

Broad Match 

Broad match keywords offer broad ad exposure. And your ad will appear it contains the phrase, keyword terms, or close variants. For example, keywords like “baseball caps:” will show your ads for search terms such as:

  • Baseball caps
  • Purple baseball caps
  • Discount baseball cap
  • Purple cap for baseball

Phrase Match 

This match type is more restrictive compared to the broad match type. Your ads will appear when buyers search for the exact keyword or keywords with additional words before or after it. 

From the example using “baseball caps,” your ads will appear for searches such as:

  • Baseball caps for men
  • Yellow baseball caps

Exact Match 

Your ads will only appear if your keywords match the customer search term. So if your customer is searching “baseball caps,” your ad will appear for the term “baseball caps” only.

Negative Keywords

Negative keywords prevent your ads from showing when customers use those search terms. Like keywords, negative keywords are divided into 

  • Negative broad match
  • Negative phrase match 
  • Negative exact match

Here’s why you need to use negative keywords in your ads. Negative keywords allow you to target customers who are likely to convert. With this level of control, you can save advertising costs and only pay for clicks that drive sales.  

Keyword Research and Analysis

There’s no doubt that using relevant keywords for your PPC campaigns is essential. Albeit, you can’t just make wild guesses. Your keyword choice should be backed by data such as ranking, relevancy, search volume, cost per click, etc. 

That’s why you need sophisticated tools to find relevant, profitable, and high-ranking keywords that will drive your campaign to the next level.

Although tools like Google Keyword Planner may be a good place to start your research, you won’t get in-depth keyword data. Experienced Amazon PPC experts use PPC Scope to…

  • Perform intensive keyword research to find high-volume keywords based on relevance and search queries.
  • Discover search terms or keywords that customers are using to find your products so you can optimize your listings for your target audience.
  • Identify best and worst-performing keywords to eliminate wasted ad spend. 

Write Ad Copy That Drives Conversion

Writing ad copy is an essential skill set for Amazon PPC experts. Because you’ll be writing thousands of ads for your clients, it is crucial to be familiar with Amazon ad copy guidelines and policies

Your ad may be your shopper’s initial contact with your brand. So, it should be compelling enough to attract clicks and drive conversions. Otherwise, you may end up paying for clicks that are not converting. 

Here are some tips to help you create compelling ad copy:

  • Your headline, title, and description should be clear and accurate. Furthermore, customers should find every single piece of information they need to make a purchase. 
  • Use high-quality and high-resolution images in your ads. Remember that’s the only visual experience your customers have before purchase, so it should be appealing enough to drive action. 
  • Write clear, direct, and powerful call-to-action that compel buyers to take action such as click, add to cart, etc. 

Explore Different Bidding Methods

Like other PPC ads, Amazon advertising operates an auction system where marketers bid the maximum amount they are willing to pay when buyers click an advertisement for their product. So after creating a compelling ad copy or optimized product listing, your job isn’t done yet. 

Your first big call is to decide what bidding strategy will help you achieve significant sales results. You may choose to launch your manual campaign or let Amazon automatically manage and adjust your bids. 

Other merchants are selling similar products to yours. So your bid must be competitive to increase your chances of getting your ad to the top of shopping search results.

However, there isn’t a one size fits all approach to Amazon PPC advertising or bidding. 

If you are just starting, I’d recommend the automatic bidding option as Amazon uses AI and complex algorithms to optimize your bid and help you achieve your advertising goals. In such cases, Amazon increases or decreases your bid based on the likelihood of conversion. This option minimizes ad spend and ensures you pay for clicks that will result in sales. 

Amazon doesn’t adjust manual bids. And you may end up paying more money just for a few clicks. However, manual bids may be the best strategy to gain a top spot if your niche is very competitive. 

Beyond manual and automatic bids, merchants can adjust bids based on various placements, including:

  • Top of search (first page)
  • Product detail pages
  • Rest of search

As mentioned earlier, no bidding strategies supersedes the other. You may need to use a combination of bidding strategies to achieve significant results. 

Understand the Metrics and Track Results 

Keeping an eye on your metrics is critical if you want to achieve campaign success. Metrics help you analyze your ad spend and measure advertising effectiveness. It also provides deeper insights into different aspects of your campaign you can adjust to increase sales.

 Amazon Campaign Manager provides detailed reporting data to help you analyze ad spend and track return on investment (ROI). 

Here are some of the metrics that can help you measure campaign performance:

  • Budget 
  • Bid
  • Detail page views (DPV)
  • Cost-per-click and cost per impression
  • Advertising cost of sales
  • Click-through rate  
  • Conversions
  • New to brand metrics 
  • Impressions
  • Returns on ad spend (ROAS)
  • Return on investment (ROI) 

Keep Up With Industry Trends and Product Updates

As an Amazon PPC expert, you have to keep up with the latest trends related to your niche, product category, or industry. Otherwise, you’ll be left behind. 

You should be willing to read product updates, monitor sales trends and patterns, attend sales events and webinars, read online news and journals. Working with different clients means you have to get your hands dirty by monitoring trends, tweaking campaigns, and bidding strategies to drive in more sales. 

 For instance, Amazon product sales for winter coats may spike due to freezing temperatures. Such events may represent an opportunity for you or your clients to make more sales. However, you may need to update your inventory, adjust your bid or targeting strategy to reach shoppers in that region. 

Get Inspired by Competitors

Keeping an eye on the competition is a critical activity for any business. There’s always a lot to learn from competitors. 

To learn from them, you need to track their activities and thoroughly understand their overall approach. You can leverage this knowledge to develop and sustain a competitive advantage that keeps you one step ahead of your competitors always. 

Whether you are a new or veteran Amazon seller, there are tons of other brands selling similar products. So you need to perform competitive analysis to edge competition.

The first phase of your competitive analysis will help you identify your major competitors and their campaign strategy. And then further investigation will provide valuable insight into 

  • Search terms and keywords that are driving more sales for your competitors
  • Best-performing, worst-performing, and underutilized keywords
  • Keyword search volumes and ranking
  • Product pricing. Ad copy, ad placements, reviews. 

The goal is to identify competitive gaps, rank for profitable keywords that your competitors are not using, increase sales and achieve a positive ROI. 

Choose the Best Tools for the Job

Amazon PPC management can be challenging and time-consuming. Spending thousands of dollars doesn’t cut it. A lot of work goes into launching successful campaigns, from setting up campaigns to measuring your results to targeting the right audience to monitoring your competitors. 

Beyond skills and knowledge, you need smart PPC tools that help you churn out results faster than your competitors. 

Sellers, experts, and PPC management agencies worldwide use PPC Scope to launch and manage successful Amazon campaigns. With this campaign optimization and management software, you can make your campaigns more profitable in seconds. 

PPC Scope’s preset optimization filter is based on Brian Johnson’s proven campaign optimization methods. Even if you are new to Amazon campaigns, these filters improve your ad and help you launch campaigns like a pro. 

Campaign Optimization

An Amazon PPC tool (like PPC Scope) is designed to analyze, optimize, and automate your Amazon PPC campaigns. With this tool, optimizing your sponsored ads takes a few minutes instead of hours. You can convert the hours spent in front of your computer to valuable time spent scaling up your business. 

The tool lets you review your campaigns, apply recommended optimization steps, and push changes directly to the Campaign Manager in a few minutes. 

Keyword Research and Analysis

PPC Scope helps you discover search terms buyers are using to find similar products as yours. You can use these keywords to optimize your listing and reach your target audience. 

The tool provides insights into your best-performing keywords as well as worst-performing keywords. With extensive keyword data, you can remove low converting keywords, maximize your ad spend, and double down on keywords that will bring in more sales. 

Campaign Performance Tracking

Gone are the days where you have to download and analyze complex reports. This tool lets you track your campaign performance and view important metrics from a single dashboard. Marketers use PPC Scope to…

  • Analyze their PPC efforts over time
  • Easily identify campaigns, ad groups, and keywords that are driving more results.
  • See how your changes to their ad impact profitability.

Beyond the self-service PPC tools and dashboards for sponsored ads, you will get:

  • Technical and tactical support from PPC Scope support staff 
  • Access to Brian Johnson’s pre-recorded strategies, live Q&A, webinars
  • Access to Private PPC Scope user community

Wrap Up

There you have it. Managing Amazon PPC campaigns is a big deal for marketers and businesses. And that’s because it takes the right set of tools and skillset to maximize campaign budgets and achieve a high return on ad spend. 

More than just setting up your PPC campaigns, Amazon PPC experts optimize campaigns, track ad spending, and monitor performance. Their job also includes A/B testing of different ad elements and strategies to determine which combination works for your business.

Overall, Amazon PPC managers troubleshoot issues and ensure that clients achieve their advertising goals and high investment returns. 

If you are looking to become an Amazon PPC expert, you don’t need certifications to get started. However, you need to put in the work, try your hands on different PPC strategies and never stop learning. With the right tools and skills we have highlighted in this article, you are on the path to becoming a successful Amazon PPC expert. 


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