Amazon’s Advertising: Bid Down vs Bid Up and Down – A case Study

Amazon rolled out several months many beta tools for advertising. One of those changes as the ability to select some bid modifiers.

Bid Modifiers:

  • Bid Down
  • Bid Up & Down
Here at My Amazon Guy we wanted to know which performs better so we have run multiple tests. The clear winner without a doubt in our minds is…. BID UP AND DOWN
This is the before(initial campaign startup) and after new up and down strategy.
First 9 days of our initial ad campaign launch with bid down.
Spend: $217.35
Orders: 17
Sales: $1937.25
down only amazon bid seller central
After new manual campaign strategy after 9 days with Bid Up and Down:
Spend: $611.82
Orders: 50
Sales: $7,242.49
bid up down amazon seller central
So as you can see from the data, when using a bid up and down strategy, sales drastically went up. And in this particular test the ACOS went down.
When we ran this same test on several other clients, we found the ACOS was similar between both bid up and down and bid down, however the bid up an down across any account we tested was at least 3x more in sales.  Other tests we ran were run in true A/B test fashion running the same timeframes with all things equal except the bid modifier.
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Amazon Product Review Tracking Now Inside Seller Central

If you’ve ever wondered how to track Amazon product reviews from customers, it just got easier. Instead of having to pay a 3rd party to crawl the data, Amazon now gives it to you for free inside Seller Central. Click here to access the Brand Dashboard.

To Access Your Product Reviews from Customers on Amazon, follow these steps:

  1. Log into Seller Central
  2. Go to Performance
  3. Brand Dashboard
  4. Customer Reviews

This drop down shows the Brand Dashboard location:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You can now also click into each review and publicly respond. This is a major beneficial update.

 

 

This is especially helpful if you have a negative review and you want to help other customers know how you resolved the conflict or issue.

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List of Amazon FBA labels Needed to Sell and Ship to Amazon

FBA labels needed to ship are very common to purchase and easy to find. Any basic Office Max, Office Depot, Staples, and sometimes even UPS/FED Ex stores will have these labels.

More often they are cheaper to buy online. In a pinch run to a brick and mortar store. But if you’re scaling and want a bulk cheaper purchase, I have used Online Labels for the past few years. Below are examples of the labels you typically need:

Product Labels: https://www.onlinelabels.com/products/ol875?src=dlc-296

2.625" x 1"

Case Labels: https://www.onlinelabels.com/products/ol2590?src=dlc-296

3.5" x 5", 6.75" x 4.5"

Pallet Labels: https://www.onlinelabels.com/products/ol150?src=dlc-296

4" x 3.33"

 

Every product needs a product label. However, if you have UPC bar codes, and are NOT in a consumable or topicals category, you do NOT need a product label. If you are in one of those categories, or do not have regular UPC barcodes, EVERY product needs a product label on it.

Case labels are used on each case/box of products. Often you are sending in 12/24/36 products in a single case pack box. It does not matter where you put the location of this label.

Pallet labels are only used if you are going LTL (Less than Truck Load). One pallet label goes on each side of the 4 sides of a pallet. Put this on the outside of the plastic wrap. You will also give the BOL (Bill of Lading) to the carrier if using this method.

This article is meant to a be a quick hit, so you can get started immediately. For a more in depth guide, check out this.

 

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How to Add an Email to Your Approved Sender List in Seller Central

If your automated email program is not figured correctly on Seller Central it can prevent the emails from being sent out. If you see zero emails being opened/sent this is a core trouble shooting step you should look into.
Amazon can block the emails from going out to customers because the email address is not on the approved senders list on your account. You will need to log into your admin account on seller central and add their email to the sender list.
This will list your email tool as an approved sender for emails from the account.
We have reviewed 4 different automatic email providers
  1. Feedback Whiz
  2. Helium 10
  3. Feedback Genius
  4. Feedback 5
We currently believe Feedback Whiz has the best in class service.

 

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How to Create a Vanity URL for an Amazon Brand Storefront

More often than not, when you create a storefront, Amazon will not give you the Vanity URL. A vanity URL contains the name of the brand in it like https://www.amazon.com/SecureItTactical for example. 

In the below screenshot, Secure It Tactical’s vanity URL has not been updated after they published their storefront. 

Steps:

  1. Navigate to the top-right hand corner in chosen seller central account and click on “Help”.

  2. This will bring a side panel out. Navigate to the bottom of the side panel and click on “Contact Us”.

  3. Once the contact page has loaded, click on “Advertising and Stores.”

  4. Click on Stores > Basic Setting > Store Builder
  5. Fill out the “Contact Reason” and the description. You can copy what is in the description below. It works every time.  
  6. Add an attachment if you’d like.

After this, Amazon should reply, changing the Vanity URL. 

Look below for an example!

 

 

 

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A+ Content Changes for Enhanced Brand Content on Amazon

 

We have the honor of guest posting on Feedback Whiz on A+ Content.

 

As brand registry starts to mature on Amazon, and everyone has their trademarks in places, it’s become a wild wild west for enhanced brand content. Because of that, Amazon has tightened up its reigns by moving both Vendor Central and Seller Central onto the same module platform and renaming it all simply A+ Content.

 

Read more here.

 

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New Amazon Day Promotion – Prime Day Discount 2019

 

Prime Day 2019 is officially July 15th and 16th. Leading up to this expect a “Prime Day Week” of promotions from Amazon.

Last year you could submit lightning deals. This year, you can submitting lightning deals as well as a “Prime Day Promotion”

This new year feature is accessed by going to: Advertising / Prime Exclusive Discounts

If you don’t see this feature available on your account, it is likely a permission issue. To fix, go to settings / permissions, and add the appropriate permission as see in this below screen shot.

 

Step 1 is to enter a name of your discount, nothing special here, it’s just internal naming.

One major call out here – this can stack with other offers. So if you already setup a coupon or lightning deal, you’ll want to avoid stacking these…

 

 

 

Onto step 2. You will download a template, and then upload it.

 

 

I found this the template to be a bit tricky. Here’s a screen shot of one I got to successfully take. Please note you need to fill out every single column.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After you upload it you can validate whether it worked. Here’s a screen shot of an arrow pointed to one NOT scheduled. Means you have to work on it more until it looks like the one just below it, and it says “Scheduled”

 

 

 

Because this feature is brand new, we don’t know exactly how it will look to the customer. I recommend everyone selling on Amazon to participate with this.

Below is some direct help files from Seller Central. Should you need help setting a Prime Day Promotion up, contact us at MyAmazonGuy.

Seller Central information:

Prime Exclusive Discount

Prime Exclusive Discount is a price discount available to Prime members. Products with a Prime Exclusive Discount will display strikethrough pricing and a savings message for Prime members in search results, and on the product detail page. Prices adjusted for discounts are displayed on the detail page buy box for Prime members.

On Prime Day, products with Prime Exclusive Discounts will display a Prime Day Deals badge in search results, and on the product detail page.

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Amazon may crack down on title length to 50 characters

UPDATE 6/27/2019
Amazon recently warned about suppressing ASINs with titles longer than 50 characters; they quietly upped that number to 200. (HT JB)
Please review these pages carefully.  Account Managers are telling sellers that these guidelines will be strictly enforced in the coming weeks.  Please make sure your titles DO NOT use “symbols, such as ~ !  $ ? _ ~ { } [ ] # < > |  ; / ^ ¬ ¦ “.

6/19/2019 Amazon may crack down on title length to 50 characters with a news release today. Below is a copy of the policy found at https://sellercentral.amazon.com/gp/help/201051300?ref=nslp_at_6341070800586908994_1_201051300 but if you aren’t logged into seller central that link won’t work so read the below.

The only unusual component is the title length which may be cracked down upon on July 22, 2019. I recommend waiting to see if your titles get suppressed before you shorten them.

FBA Product Title Requirements

Creating a product title that meets all Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) requirements will help ensure customers find your products on Amazon.

The product title for an ASIN listed on the website needs to contain the right information and be in a consistent format. Product labels must also include the exact same product title or your inventory may be refused at Amazon fulfillment centers or received as Unfulfillable.

Note: For more information about product label requirements, review the FBA Help section for Labeled Inventory or download the PDF.

Whether you are using FBA or not, listing your inventory on Amazon is handled the same way. Here are some resources if you are new to selling:

Product title guidelines

Length:

Use 50 characters maximum as a general rule. However some product categories allow longer titles, so be sure to follow category-specific instructions.

Capitalization:

  • Capitalize the first letter of each word.
  • Do not use ALL CAPS.
  • Conjunctions (and, or, for) and articles (the, a, an) should not be capitalized.
  • Don’t capitalize prepositions with fewer than five letters (in, on, over, with).

Numbers and symbols:

  • Use numerals (2 instead of two)
  • Spell out measurements ( 6 inches not 6″ )
  • Don’t use symbols, such as ~ ! * $ ?
  • Don’t use Type 1 High ASCII characters (Æ, ©, ô, etc.)

Product information:

  • Include the size and color in “child” ASINs for variations1
  • Don’t include price or promotional messages, such as “sale” or “free ship”
  • Don’t use subjective commentary, such as “Hot Item” or “Best Seller”
  • Your merchant name for Brand or Manufacturer information should not be included, unless your product is Private Label
Note: Move product-specific information (such as “great workout”) to the Product Description for the ASIN, or include in the keywords.

Titles using variation relationships

In Variation Relationships, only the title of the parent ASIN is shown on the detail page. The title for the selected child ASIN will appear once the ASIN is added to the customer’s cart, so it is important to include the variation attributes (such as size and color) in the title for the child ASIN.

  • Example parent: Crocs Beach Clog
  • Example child: Crocs Beach Clog, Lime, Medium (Women’s 8-9 M US/Men’s 6-7 M US)

1See the Variation Relationships Help page for more information about parent-child products.

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How to View Inventory Age and Excess Inventory on Seller Central

If you have too much inventory at Amazon you will be paying storage fees.

 

FBA long-term storage fees

On the 15th of each month, Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) conducts an inventory cleanup. On these dates, inventory that has been in US fulfillment centers for more than 365 days incurs a long-term storage fee (LTSF) of $6.90 per cubic foot or a $0.15 per-unit long-term storage fee, whichever is greater.

As announced in the 2019 US FBA fee changes summary, we are eliminating long-term storage fees for units that have been in a fulfillment center for 181 to 365 days. The last long-term storage fee charge for inventory in a fulfillment center for 181 to 365 days was January 15, 2019. This change is not retroactive. Any previous 181 to 365 day charges will not be reimbursed.

Note: Inventory enrolled in FBA Small and Light remains subject to LTSF charges on units in fulfillment centers between 181 to 365 days. See FBA Small and Light for current LTSF rates for these units.

Long-term storage fees, February 15, 2019, and after

Inventory cleanup date Items in a fulfillment center more than 365 days
15th of every month $6.90 per cubic foot

 

So to help alleviate those storage fees, you should look at the inventory age and create removal orders on bad inventory.

To find inventory age click on “Inventory Planning” under the “Inventory” tab.

 

This will take you to the inventory dashboard. Here you will click on “Inventory Age” to view how many days each product has been at Amazon’s warehouse. To view overstocked items you can click on “Manage Excess Inventory”.

 

 

Then to do a removal order click https://sellercentral.amazon.com/inventory/

And click the edit drop down to do a removal order.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you need more assistance contact us here.

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New Portfolio Amazon Advertising Campaign Management with Seller Central

Contact MyAmazonGuy at www.myamazonguy.com/contact – Advertising Setups for $500.

Portfolios are brand new, not every account has them yet. Check your account in seller central by going to advertising, campaigns, and on the left hand side you can see whether your account is enabled.

These will primarily help you divide your campaigns into sections to know results, cap budgets, and other reporting tools and control at a higher level than campaigns. Previously you could only control keyword bids, campaign budgets. This helps Amazon catch up to many of the Google tools out there.

 

Amazon help file on portfolios: https://sellercentral.amazon.com/gp/help/help-page.html?itemID=200663330

 

Previous advertising videos:
-Advertising framework, segmentation by manual/auto/brand/competitor: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9U4hdo__SRE
-Beta advertising automatic campaign targeting: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S2ESzzbjxG8
-Beta product targeting on sponsored ads https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JOXomqC-jgc&t=5s

 

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