Amazon Ads, how hard can it be? – What I learned so far.

“Amazon ads. Easy Peasy. I’m a Google Ads Pro, how hard can it be?”

Oh boy was I wrong. It’s a whole different game.

Below what I learned from spending +500.000€ in ad spend in my first 5 months.

1. Amazon is a snake nest

You need to go in full attack mode, or you’ll get eaten (or at least bitten). Competition is so fierce that when you don’t advertise aggressively, you are basically doomed. 

Other brands will bid on all your branded search keywords, bid on your product detail pages and will try to get you offline any way they can. If they can steal a sale from you, they will. It’s a snake nest.

2. It’s a direct impact channel

No other online channel has such a direct impact on your sales. Even more than Google Ads/Shopping, you can steer your ad spend and revenue. The fact that the ads AND the actual sales happen on the same platform make it perfectly measurable. 

It’s every performance marketeer’s dream. 

(Also, when things go south you’ll feel it immediately. )

3. Other Strategy needed

The fact that there are ads on your actual product pages requests a different strategy than Google Ads.

There are A LOT of possibilities concerning ad formats and targeting. If you want to win, you need quite a lot of them.

Sponsored Products, Sponsored Brands, Display & Video ads. Attack competitors, Defend your own Products with Cross sell.  Target on keywords, skus, categories, interests. It needs a different way of thinking. You always need to expand your market share (offensive campaigns) while defending what you already have (defensive campaigns).

Snooze = Loose.

4. High maintenance

All these ad types and fierce competition make it a high maintenance channel. Daily/weekly optimizations on large scale are needed. You might need a tool for that (I’m using Helium10’s Adtomic).

Helium10 Adtomic Automated Rules

(Example of an Automated Rule in Adtomic that excludes keywords in one campaign and ads them in another one)

5. Structure the Chaos

Accounts grow exponentially as you add new products/categories/ad types. So a decent account structure and naming convention for your campaigns is a MUST. It will save you a lot of time, prevent errors or overlap in campaigns, help you make better strategic decisions.

I structured around Branded and NonBranded x Product Type x Campaign Type

Ex. NonBranded – SP-“Product-X”-Cross-Sell

I’m not 100% there yet as I want to split even more gradually into Broad/Exact match campaigns later on.

In the end a good structure will make you more money.

6. Amazon Ads sales team are agressive

Google Ads has dark patterns and lousy recommendations to make you spend more. Amazon Ads has their sales team. Yes, some suggestions are ok, but they push very hard on spending more. They even make full fletched campaigns you can activate with a click.

Get second opinions, read around before implementing anything.

7. Badger Nation FTW

There’s a lot of info online, but I learned the most from “the PPC Den Podcast” from AdBadger.

If ever you want to learn more about Amazon Ads. Start Here:


8. Amazon Prime Day is HUGE

Mainly in UK, DE and also quiet strong in IT. Prime day can really be considered as the “black friday of Amazon”.

During the two Amazon Prime days I checked sales and ad spend hourly. Budget optimisations were also done hourly.

Day 1 was crazy in volume. Day 2 started slowly but had a very strong evening, as people want to catch their deals before they end at midnight.

9. Reach out about Amazon Ads

That’s it for now. I’m still learning so if you have extra input or want to chat: be welcome.









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