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Fine Tune Advertising on Amazon with Advanced Match Types

  • Feb 8, 2016 | Marcus DeHart

Finding the right keywords for your Amazon Sponsored Products is critical if you want to increase sales. In Discover Effective Keywords for Advertising on Amazon, I described how you can use automatic targeting and the Search Term Report to pinpoint customer search terms to use as keywords in campaigns with manual targeting.

One of the big advantages to using manual targeting is the ability to bid by keyword. If you know a lot of customers are searching for a specific word that is more likely to result in a sale, you can bet you won't be the only one bidding on that word. So setting a competitive bid will get you more impressions for that keyword.

The second big advantage that manual targeting has over automatic targeting is the use of advanced match types. When you add a keyword to an ad group, by default it uses a broad match type. You also have the option of using a phrase match or an exact match on keywords. Let’s take a look at how each of them work.

Broad Match

As the name suggests, this match type targets the broadest search terms. If your keyword appears anywhere in a shopper’s search term, that keyword will be able to bid for placement on the search results. In the screen shot below, I’ve searched for the term “wood burning kit.”

Two Sponsored Products appear on the right. The first ad has bid on the keyword “burning” and second has bid on the word “wood.” Both of these words appear in the search term, so they were included in the auction. With broad match, you can use a single word or multiple words, and the search term will match if it contains all of the words in any order. So “wood kit” would also be eligible to bid on the search term “wood burning kit.”



Phrase Match

A phrase match typically consists of more than one word. The search term must match the keyword phrase sequence. The search term can also contain words not in the keyword phrase provided they don’t break up the phrase. For example, the keyword phrase “USB charger” would be eligible to bid on the search term “5 port USB charger.” So in the screen shot below, both a six-port and a ten-port USB charger display in the auction, even though the search was for a five-port USB charger.

If the search term was for “5 port charger USB,” the phrase keyword would not be eligible to bid for placement. As a result, a phrase match will typically generate fewer impressions than a broad match, but they could generate a higher click-through ratio (CTR).

Good candidates for phrase match might include brand names and models, brand taglines, and unique features that apply to specific products.



Exact Match

With exact match, they keyword (or words) that you bid on must match the search term exactly. The search term can’t contain additional words, and if the keyword consists of multiple words, the sequence of words must be identical.

So if my exact match keyword is “Braun series 9” my add would be eligible to bid only if the shopper searched for “Braun series 9.” My exact match keyword would not be eligible for “Braun series 9 electric shaver” or “series 9 braun” because either extra words are use or the sequence of words are not the same.

Again, exact match keywords will get even fewer impressions than broad or phrase match types. But the CTR will tend to be higher.



A Word on Matching

Amazon’s search engines are smart, so don’t let “exact match” throw you off. For all of these match types, Amazon takes into consideration variations like capitalization, plural and possessive forms of words, and even common misspellings. So there’s no need to bid on multiple variations of a single keyword. A single keyword like “treadmill” will cover search terms for both “treadmills” and “Treadmill.”

Bid by Keyword

Once you’ve identified keywords that you want to add as phrase or exact match, go to your ad group and select the keyword tab. Choose “Provide your own keywords” and select the keyword match type from the drop-down menu. From there you can increase your bids for your phrase and exact match keywords.

If you are adding lots of keywords, consider using the bulk upload file I mentioned in Manage Amazon Ads Efficiently with Bulk Operations. Also, you can’t change a keyword’s match type. Instead, simply add the keyword a second time with the match type you want and increase the bid. You could have different bids on broad, phrase, and exact match types for the same word. In my next post, I tell you how you can block ineffective keywords from bidding for placement.



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Avalara Author
Marcus DeHart
Avalara Author Marcus DeHart