Posted on May 06, 2021

Successful Amazon sellers rely on effective PPC campaigns

When looking to advertise your products and services to a huge market, nothing compares to Amazon’s 6 billion people-sized audience. After we have guided you through this article on how to set up PPC on Amazon, you’ll be ready to target a vast audience of customers who are waiting to purchase your products.


The benefits of setting up PPC on Amazon

Over recent years, online purchases have grown exponentially. There is more competition for advertising online and businesses are constantly finding new ways to take advantage of the highly competitive e-commerce marketplace.


In this easy-to-follow guide, we will show you how to launch your first PPC campaign and offer some valuable insight along the way, to help you to benefit from the extensive Amazon e-commerce market and maximise your ROI.


Three campaigns to begin with

We have provided three examples of campaigns for you:


  • Option 1 is a keyword targeting campaign, where you will use an exact keyword to market your product.
  • Option 2 is an automated campaign where Amazon does most of the groundwork for you.
  • Option 3 allows your products to rank for a broader, less specific range of words relating to your product.


Keywords are the key to success

Before you start your campaign, it can be beneficial to look at Amazon’s marketplace from the perspective of a consumer to determine where your products will fit within the market. Type in keywords that are relevant to a product you are intending to sell and consider the results Amazon displays for you. Review the results and focus on the keywords used within the titles and descriptions.


Amazon crawls through product listings to reveal relevant keywords in the title and descriptions. Particular keywords trigger certain ads, and so it is important to research and experiment with long-tail keywords and develop a list of high-impact keywords for each campaign before you start.


Compile a list of keywords that you want to exactly match your product, and then keep a separate list of keywords that loosely match the product. We will show you how to make good use of these as we start to progress through your campaigns.


Keyword planning

There are some good keyword research tools available but, for beginners and at no additional cost, you can use Google’s Keyword Planner to help create your lists. Try and identify words that your competitors are no longer using or perhaps, more importantly, if you are using keywords that are no longer converting.


If you look at the images below, you will quickly notice that the top-ranking ads are all ‘Sponsored’. However, when first looking how to set up PPC on Amazon, you should be made aware that those ‘Sponsored’ products are all PPC campaigns.


Amazon sponsored products example


Your main objective should be to use your knowledge of the industry to combine quality keywords with clever use of metrics, or key performance indicators (KPIs), to create enough impressions through your PPC campaign.


Growing your traffic organically is, unfortunately, a long, drawn-out affair and, despite the no-cost element, there is a price to pay at the beginning, and that price comes in the form of a good PPC campaign.


Bid optimistically – spend more to sell more

We recommend that you bid optimistically, especially during a test period of between two and four weeks. The reason for suggesting bidding at the higher end of the range is because your goal is to sell products, and the quickest way to sell products is to bid as high as possible. If you bid low, it will take you a long time to move up the pages and eventually get your products noticed. Sellers who have been successfully selling on Amazon for years know that it is cost-effective to sell sooner rather than later because, over time, you will spend more by spending less.


Sign in to start your campaign

Sign into Seller Central and choose Campaign Manager on the Advertising menu.


Choose your campaign type:

Amazon PPC campaign types

  • Click Continue on Sponsored Products – the easiest campaign to set up and probably the most powerful.
  • Give your campaign a name

When naming your campaign, always remember to give it a date. When you start using multiple campaigns, you will find it difficult to remember when you started running a certain campaign. It’s important to keep on top of your schedule to be able to monitor each campaign and compare it to others.


  • Add a start date

Start your campaign from today’s date (you don’t necessarily have to give it an end date). If you feel more comfortable providing an end date, a month is a good marker in the beginning, and we genuinely recommend that you test each campaign for at least two weeks.


  • Choose a daily budget

Compare your daily budget with your bidding strategy for maximum effectiveness. You will be asked in the forthcoming steps to provide your keywords and set a bid. If you set your daily budget at £20.00 and your default bid is £2.00, you will only receive 10 clicks per day on your ad, so please consider this if you take our advice to bid more optimistically.


Select a targeting type – Option 1. Keyword Targeting PPC Campaign


Amazon PPC targeting


  • Choose manual targeting for a campaign bidding strategy

By choosing manual targeting we are advocating a perfect match campaign based upon specific keywords.

  • Always choose dynamic bids – down only. This allows for more control with your bidding strategy, and you can always bring the bidding down if necessary. When bidding in the higher range, you certainly need to remain in control of your budget. With dynamic bids, Amazon can automatically raise your bids by 100%, and the fixed bid option will only use the exact bid stated.
  • Ad group namegive the ad group name the same, exact name as you chose for your campaign name, above.
  • Select your product


Targeting type

As this is a keyword targeting campaign, select Keyword targeting and then enter your exact keyword list into the box beneath.


Amazon PPC targeting types


  • Match type – tick the exact box for a specific keyword campaign.
  • Bid if you choose Suggested bid, go 10% higher to increase the chances of outbidding your competitors, and use odd numbers. Everyone bids at £2.00 or £2.50, so play the market and go to £2.01 or £2.51 for a slight advantage on those who stick to common parameters. Custom bid allows you to accentuate this facility. Don’t be content to leave it on the figure provided, go higher, and outbid.
  • Once you’ve clicked Save and Finish you will be able to launch your campaign. You will be taken back to the campaign manager where you will receive a notification that your campaign has been launched successfully.

Even once you have launched your campaign, you can check your status and adjust the suggested bid as you please. If your budget allows, we also suggest that you bid 10% higher on the highest range possible for every keyword.


Keyword targeting options

We touched upon the importance of keywords earlier and, when looking at how to set up PPC on Amazon, you will notice that Amazon will help with your keyword research. At the point where you choose your product, scroll down to Keyword targeting, and you will notice how Amazon will recommend an extensive list of keywords relating to your product. You can filter by Broad, Phrase, or Exact, depending on your campaign.


If you go for an exact match campaign, your ad will only show for the exact keyword you have listed for that product, whereas a broad match will relate to loose, complimentary, or close variations of your chosen keyword. Or, alternatively, you can choose a relatable phrase for your product.


Option 2. Automatic PPC campaigns

Automatic PPC Campaigns are amongst the easiest ones to run and yet they can be very profitable. This campaign is recommended for beginners who need to test the market and collate and measure valuable information relevant to their market.


Targeting type

  • Choose Automatic targeting on this occasion. You will notice that you are not asked to provide a keyword list on this occasion as Amazon does all the work for you. In Automatic targeting, Amazon decides what it runs your ad for. Based on your overall listings, Amazon determines what keywords or ASINS (Amazon Standard Identification Number – the unique alphanumeric identifier assigned by Amazon for each product) it should run your product ads on.
  • Set your daily budget as before.
  • As before – dynamic bids set to down only.
  • Choose your Ad group name as before, taking the original name, and then select your product from Products and then click Add.
  • Set your default bid as previously suggested in option 1 at 10% more than the highest suggested bid.


Within Automatic targeting, you can also set bids by targeting group to match as closely as possible to what Amazon believes is a good match.


Option 3. Broad Match PPC Campaign

Amazon will run an algorithm for a Broad Match PPC Campaign to match your product with keywords that are loosely matched or substituted from your list.


  • In Settings, choose Manual targeting for this campaign after adding your Campaign name with a date, a Start date with an End date of two weeks and a Daily budget of your choice.


Amazon ACoS Formula

When considering making changes to your budget, you should also keep in mind Amazon’s ACoS (Advertising Cost of Sales). Similar to Google Ads ROAS (Return on Ad Spend), this is a critical measurement of your ad spend.


Your campaign’s success is calculated like this:

Amazon ACOS formula



Therefore, if Amazon has measured your ACoS at 20%, you have paid 0.20p for every £1.00 made, or, more optimistically, £200.00 for every £1000.00 you made.


Campaign bidding strategy

Again, like the previous two campaigns, we are opting for dynamic bids – down only.


  • Select your Ad group name – when adapting different strategies, it may be worth putting the type of strategy within the ad group name, to define it from the others.
  • Select Product
  • Keyword targeting – tick Broad and extract a broad list of keywords and paste it into the box

Set your bid and go to Negative keyword targeting.


Negative keyword targeting on Amazon

Many users fail to utilise this section, but it has huge potential and will give you an edge when looking to avoid your products being associated with certain words or phrases. If, for instance, your products are exclusive or high-end, you don’t want to be found with keywords such as ‘cheap’ or ‘bargain’, and this optional facility will certainly help avoid negative associations.


  • Drop your list of negative keywords (words you don’t want Amazon to run ads for) into the box and click on Negative exact.

Amazon negative keywords


If you duplicate words from your lists, don’t worry, as Amazon will inform you by making you aware which were successfully added.


Once you’ve launched your campaign, you will be able to see the Suggested bids and adjust accordingly – ideally to about 10% of the higher end of that range.


With all test campaigns, we suggest running for two weeks, but you can leave the end date open if you prefer to give your campaign longer.


You are now ready for an Amazon-sized audience

Now that you have three very different tried and tested campaigns and access to Amazon’s vast audience of consumers to promote your ads to, ensure that it’s important that you continue to experiment and explore the market. This includes testing your variables and surveying your market accordingly. Incorporate new keywords when necessary and constantly check your bidding range whilst remembering to facilitate the negative keywords option.


Are you looking for further assistance with your PPC campaigns to increase your marketplace activity?

If you are looking to advance even further with selling your products online, Diginius can assist with helping you to advertise in the marketplace and help maximise your online performance, so get in touch with our team today.

Interested in seeing our Diginius Insight software in action?

To request an online demo, please give us a call on +44 (0) 207 267 9322. Or use the form below and a member of our customer growth team will get in touch.