Selling on Amazon is a continuous process that involves constantly finding new ways to get customers’ attention. Getting into the brand registry is one of the best ways of opening up new potential avenues of growth for your brand. Being a registered brand on Amazon is like getting access to the VIP section of seller central, similar to getting “verified” on Amazon. Advertising as a Registered Brand can really improve how your product gets seen.
What are the benefits of getting into the Brand Registry?
– Guaranteed BuyBox, and a much greater level of protection against hijackers.
– A special reporting system that allows you to report counterfeits to Amazon and protect your brand.
– Enhanced brand content, also known as A+ content, that allows you to customize your storefront and product pages, much like you would your own landing/web page.
– Sponsored brands: access to two types of advertising, along with the new Sponsored Display.
(Unfortunately, because you must have a registered trademark in your market country, getting accepted can take a while. To make the process shorter, make sure you have a trademark registered.)
After you have a registered brand account and navigate from “Campaign Manager” to “Create a New Campaign,” this is what you’ll see:
You now have access to an expanded advertising toolkit. Here are the steps that follow:
Formerly known as “Headline ads,” you’ll find these ads commonly displayed on Amazon, beneath the search bar and above the search results.
For example, here’s what you’ll see after searching tent on Amazon.com
The first three products each have the logo of the company, along with a link that leads you directly to the storefront of that brand.
So, how’s this look on the backend?
This is the first difference you will notice once you start scrolling through the “Create campaign” user interface.
For the first option, you can choose which product line you will advertise based on how you’ve arranged your A+ content. Once you decide, Amazon will provide suggestions, which will most likely be the most presentable product from your product line.
The preview is another important aspect of the setup. As you are constructing your ad, you can see how it will look for each of the seven ways an Amazon shopper might come across it:
This gives you a good perspective on all the various ways people browse Amazon, and how they often come across ads. You might be surprised to know that 33% of Amazon users prefer using their mobile devices while shopping.
The rest of the setup is similar to running Sponsored Products or PPC —when it comes to keyword targeting and product targeting—the only major difference is that you are restricted to running an Auto-Sponsored Brands Campaign.
The main differences between Sponsored Brands and Sponsored Products
The bids – The way bidding works for Sponsored Brands is exactly the same as it is for Sponsored Products. The biggest difference is the approach to placing your bids. Unlike Sponsored Products, where you’re presented with over a dozen on each page, with Sponsored Brands there’s only one per search.
This means you have to expect to bid higher than you would on the exact targets if you were doing a regular Sponsored Products campaign. Or if you bid lower, the daily budget of competitors who bid higher will eventually run out and your ads will display.
Keeping an eye on spending is key to figuring out your place in the pecking order and knowing how aggressive you want to be.
Dominance – This is the prominent distinguishing property of the Sponsored Brand ads. Many sellers use them to promote their brand, not necessarily just for sales and organic rankings. Sellers want to have their brand associated with their niche, so they are willing to sacrifice their ACOS in order to ensure shoppers who are looking for items in that category are going to associate it with their brand.
You will often find pages where a certain brand with Amazon’s Choice has their Sponsored Brand ad on the top of the page.
This is a great way for dominant brands to sort of “defend their territory” and keep themselves relevant. This is precisely why you can find yourself in a bidding war and why the bids can get higher.
This allows you to send an email to your customers through Amazon’s own system, which allows you to ask for reviews. You cannot get your customers email, but you can contact them. There are rules to what you can send in these emails, the most important ones being not to ask for a positive review and not to include any external links that lead outside of Amazon. You can also attach a file to your email in the form of a PDF or an image file. Remember, the thing you cannot do is ask for a positive review, you can ask for an honest one.
However, this is not the case in all niches and even if it is there are ways around that.
Competing products – You can only advertise three products during a Sponsored Brand campaign. This is a big difference compared to Sponsored Products, where you can have as many products in rotation as you like. While having 100 products in rotation isn’t the best idea, having just three isn’t enough.
Some sellers advise you not to put the same advertising targets in different campaigns, since you might be bidding against yourself. While this can be true when it comes to Sponsored Products, remember to consider how many other listings you’re competing with—when it comes to sponsored ads, bidding against yourself can actually increase your Cost Per Click (CPC) significantly.
If you can’t afford to bid against your own campaigns and your competitors’, the best way around it is to get a list of relevant keywords to advertise on and separate them between campaigns.
Another option that recently became available is the ability to give the A9 algorithm the option of displaying another product if they find it to be more suitable for the search term that the ad will show up on.
This change can make a big difference. You might be able to go around the problem and have a smaller number of campaigns covering more ground; this is fairly new and there are some kinks to work out, but it is a very viable option to take advantage of.
Taking the full advantage of match types – If you start researching your niche, you may come across many long-tailed keywords without Sponsored Brand ads. This is due to the fact that many sellers with registered brands are overly concerned with only a handful of the most relevant, short-tailed keywords.
Take our second image for example: If a seller is listing tents, they will be pushing hard to win the search for the main word … tent. This is the effect of so many brands wanting to dominate their category.
So, why not get really cheap clicks for long-tailed keywords or Phrase and Broad match types? Take advantage of all the keyword targeting options that Sponsored Products offer.
New metrics in the campaign manager – If you go to any campaign you are currently running, you can go to “columns” and “select columns” and you will see 4 new options:
These 4 metrics are not necessarily a difference between Sponsored Brands and Sponsored Products, since these metrics become available once you become a registered brand. However, although they are not displaying any data for Sponsored Products currently, we can expect that to change in the future. These metrics show up in the Sponsored Brands reports and provide great insight into how many people are returning customers and how many new customers you are reaching.
Sponsored Display Ads
This is an old feature that has been revamped. These are the types of ads that you might come across on the sides of the Amazon window or beneath a listing. Here’s an example: While these types of listings were available before, Amazon has expanded their reach. The ads will show up outside of Amazon, as well as on all other Amazon sites and Amazon’s partner sites. Ads like these are actually made by Amazon and they lead to Amazon storefronts or listings. This is a whole new territory for Amazon, and it’s a very ambitious one. The UI is very simple and only has a handful of options: You can create an ad group and choose which products to advertise.
There is no targeting to speak of, so it’s sort of a shot in the dark. We can only assume that Amazon’s A9 algorithm is cross referencing shoppers data and identifying them once they visit those external websites, otherwise the ads would not be doing what they claim they are doing. This is basically a way for Amazon advertising to leave Amazon.
If this option succeeds—it’s currently in beta—we can expect Amazon to add more dimensions. Even if it fails at first, Amazon is sure to keep trying to expand this new advertising avenue. All changes made to Pay Per Click ads from the past were beta tests, too. And, most recently, product targeting.
Tackling this new set of dials is exactly what we’ve grown to expect as Amazon sellers. The platform keeps adding new tools and, in some cases, becomes more complicated. It’s not just the fluctuations in the shopping habits of your customers that should be a variable in your equation, it’s the changes Amazon makes and the impact they have that should also be peaking your interest. One thing we know for sure, as long as Amazon keeps experimenting with changes, the sellers will be getting plentiful opportunities to grow and adapt.
So why not experiment to see if it works for you?