Amazon Best Sellers Rank and Choosing the Right Category

Today I’m going to answer common questions about Best Sellers rank or BSR. The clients question is:

“ I have something that is puzzling me and I’m hoping you could help. I have a product that can be listed in two categories A and B. The top sellers are between these two categories. Category A, your sales are giving you a BSR of 20,000 and in Category B your BSR is 5000. So, the first question is, what is the category value in the Sales Ranking Equation? As long as my rankings never change much, I change between any categories even irrelevant ones. We know that ranking for specific keywords Is all about your performance for this keyword – Sales Velocity, conversion, reviews, etc.”

So, let me address that first. Okay, you have different categories in Amazon and different BSRs, so let’s just talk about the BSR for a second. The Best Sellers Rank is based on the total number of sellers of items In that category’s catalogue.  So, for example, in Home and Kitchen, there are so many items in that area, under that category. So, a rank of 30,000 in Home and Kitchen, maybe better than a rank of 20,000 in Kitchen and Dining, which has a smaller number of items for sale. On the other hand, Clothing, Shoes and Jewelry, there are millions in that category, so it’s really hard to determine what a good ranking is.

Your BSR, your Best Seller’s Rank is based on a few things:

1. Your sales velocity

2. Number of reviews

3. Where your traffic is coming from, and how much conversion you’re getting

You’ll notice that, if you run a lot of external traffic and you’re sending a lot of external traffic to Amazon, your sales rank will actually go up because Amazon’s algorithm ranks you higher based on that. Because when it sees a lot of visits are coming from off of amazon to view this page, they’re going to move you up in rank, they’re going to move you up in those pages of that category. Versus you just running PPC on Amazon, yes it’ll rank you a little bit if you’re getting conversions. People are clicking on your ads and they’re buying your product, and that ranks you,

But ultimately, you want to make sure that you are ranking for those important keywords and that you are showing up organically as high as possible for those particular search phrases. That’s what it’s all about.

Now, what I’ve seen happen is, if you move yourself from Home and Kitchen to Kitchen and Dining, the only difference that it may make, is when people are searching in sub-categories, and let’s say you show up higher in Kitchen and Dining, people are searching in those sub-categories when they’re shopping, They may be more likely to buy your product under Kitchen and Dining than they would under the main category Home and Kitchen. It’s all about the products and what category it fits into, and where customers are finding those products in search. That’s why you see, lately Amazon’s been messing around with categories and they’ve been changing their category structure, suddenly your product is moved categories and sales dropped, because no one is finding these products in searches. What category you’re in has to do with what people finding you under searches for the keywords you are relevant under.

I use DS Amazon Quickview chrome extension, and that shows me sales rank right on the page where I’m scrolling, and lately I’ve noticed a lot of people have no rank, and that usually means that they have zero sales, but I’ve noticed lately there’s a lot of people that have no rank that also have reviews, so I know that they have sales. So, what’s happening is a lot of people’s categories are dropping off and if you don’t have a category, you don’t have a rank.

So it’s less about making sure your BSR is higher in a certain category than another and more about making sure that your product is listed properly in the right category and that you are shown organically in search. Meaning somebody types in a Keyword Phrase, you’re showing up for that keyword phrase organically in the search results in the first three pages. And if you’re not showing up organically in the search results in the first three pages, you need to run aggressive PPC to that keyword phrase and make sure that you’re converting.

If you’re not converting, if you’re running an ad, let’s say you’re selling a black coffee mug and you’re running this ad for black coffee mug but your price sucks and your photo sucks and your listing doesn’t have the keyword phrase black coffee mug in it, and you’re trying to get to the top of the page 1 for PPC, and so people are clicking your ad, and they’re like oh they are too expensive, I’m not buying that or oh my gosh  I think its ugly, so they don’t buy it and then what happens is in the bidding of PPC, Amazon says “they bid a lot for this keyword but they’re not converting so they move you down the page in ad placement, and your customers don’t see your ad the top of the page, then suddenly, you’re paying all this money to be shown in a really bad spot for your PPC.

So bottom line is, you wanna rank for keywords, you wanna make sure you’re in the right category, and if you’re not ranking or keywords organically, you need to contact somebody like me who can write a better listing for you or you need to make sure that:

  1. Your listing is optimized
  2. You’re running PPC for that specific keyword that you wanna rank for
  3. You check your ad placement

Don’t just start PPC and then say, I don’t know what’s going on. Instead go on Amazon, physically type in that keyword and see where your ad is showing up and then go back to see the suggested bid and see what’s going on, raise your bid, do what you need to do but make sure you’re converting.

If you’re not getting sales, either that keyword is not relevant or there’s something wrong with your photos, your listing or your price. Look on the page, see what your competitors are doing and stay one step ahead of them every single time.

So, that is what BSR is all about. If you wanna improve your BSR, you should definitely take the algorithm into consideration. Make sure you’re in the right category to begin with. Make sure you’re ranking for these keywords and make sure you are not just driving on Amazon traffic but driving off Amazon traffic, and that is going to rank you. Amazon algorithm loves external traffic. That’s where my google ads stuff comes in.  If you need help with google ads, reach out to us, check out my google ads mini course, it will get you on the right track, so that you can set up external traffic to your listing. I spend an average of 10 cents of cost per click, $5 a day on google ads ad its sticks the landing on my product rank. So, if you’re wondering how your competitors are doing that, that’s how they’re doing it, they’re running external traffic. Also make sure that the external traffic that you’re running has intent to buy behind it. A lot of people have spent a lot of money on Facebook ads, and if I ran an ad for this coffee mug on Facebook, there’s no intent to buy there, people are not gonna leave their Facebook feed to buy my black coffee mug. But if  I run it on google, where people actually go to shop, they’re typing in coffee mug black amazon right into google there’s a lot more intent to buy there. So, I’m gonna go out more bang for my buck than spending it on a Facebook ad.

Facebook ads are great for viral products and stuff like that. Things that people are like Oh my gosh, I gotta have that right now, so that’s okay, just make sure you know your products, you know your audience and you know the right platforms’ advertising.

So anyway, that’s my talk about BSR. If you like, you can always study the different categories on Amazon and see. You can use the product categorization tool in Seller Central. Go to the help menu, type in product categorization, or product category tool. Click categorize your product and you can type in your product and it will give you a bunch of various categories that this product is listed in and all of that and you can use some of that data to make sure that your filling out your back-end, your listing back-end, your more details tab, your keywords tab, there are some extra fields in there that those categories will help build. So, anyway, that’s another discussion, but make sure you guys are paying attention to this stuff because it is important and your whole online business is based on someone being able to find you, it’s all based on search engine optimization, So you have to nail it, alright?

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