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When you become an Amazon seller, you gain access to the biggest online marketplace in the world. More than half of product searches happen on Amazon, not Google or another search engine. But all that traffic doesn’t help you if no one sees your items. That’s why Amazon listing optimization is critical.

Amazon shopping

There are more than 12 million products listed on Amazon. It’s not easy to stand out in the crowd, particularly if you sell the same or similar products as other sellers. That’s why it’s vital to develop a strategy for ranking in Amazon searches. Amazon product listing optimization gives your Marketplace listings a fighting chance to win the buy box.

What is Amazon listing optimization?

Businesses invest a lot in SEO — search engine optimization. Applying the principles of SEO gets website pages to rank higher in Google searches. Amazon listing optimization is SEO for your Amazon product pages. When you optimize your Amazon product pages, your products will rank higher in search results.

Also, by gaining an understanding of what Amazon shoppers are looking for, you create pages that show up in the most relevant searches. Here is what you need to know to optimize your Amazon product pages.

How to optimize product listing images on Amazon

There are lots of tactics that will improve your search result rankings. Those are important. But nothing is more important than the images on your product pages. Creating better images may not make a big difference in your search rankings, but it will increase your conversions. That’s why optimizing your images gets its own section.

A picture is worth a thousand words. Good product photographs will get buyers to click through to your product listings. Clear and detailed images are critical to building the trust that shoppers need before they buy from you.

Optimize your main image

The main image for your product listing is the one that will convince shoppers to click on your listing. The picture should be clear and crisp.

Best practices for your main image include:

  • Display your product against a plain white background.
  • Don’t include anything in the photo except the item.
  • Make your product as big as possible. It should fill at least 80% of the frame.
  • Include the whole item in the frame.
pants main image

The goal of your main image is to clearly and concisely communicate what you’re selling. Your secondary images and the copy on your product pages can highlight the features, usefulness, and beautiful design of the item. Keep your primary image simple.

There are a few exceptions to this rule. If you are selling an item of clothing, you could use a photo with a model as your primary image. This is particularly true if the product would be hard to see laid flat. For clothing shown on a model, you don’t need to show the whole model. Focus your image on the item for sale. For example, if you’re selling t-shirts, center the torso in the photo. You want it to be clear that the shirt is what’s for sale, not the pants the model is wearing.

Amazon listing optimization for a t-shirt

Improve your secondary images

Your secondary images display more detail about your product. If you’re selling clothing, you could include a photo showing how happy the model is to be wearing it. Include other objects in the frame to show the scale of the product, if that’s relevant. Show the product in use. If you’re selling a blender, include a secondary photo with a colorful smoothie inside.

Your secondary images can include a close-up view of one or more features. You can also add explanatory text to these images, as needed.

pants detail for a secondary image

The secondary images help the consumer imagine how they would use the product and how they will feel when they use it. Use your visuals to answer questions shoppers may have about the size, durability, and uses of the item.

Photography tips

If you’re selling brand-name merchandise, you may be able to get high-quality product photos from the manufacturer. For other items, you will be the photographer. You can take photos that help optimize your Amazon product pages if you follow a few simple rules.

First, get your lighting right. It’s worth investing in one or two good lights for product photography. Make sure there are no shadows on your item.

Next, look at your item from all angles. Figure out the best view for your main image. Try some different views of the product for secondary shots.

Take crisp, high-resolution photos. Make sure the product is in focus. Your photos should be no smaller than 1000 pixels wide and 1000 pixels tall. That is the minimum size that works with the zoom feature on Amazon product pages. Zoom allows shoppers to create their own close-ups to better see product features. Using images that work with the zoom feature on your product pages will increase your conversions.

Amazon Listing Optimization Imagery

More tips for improving your Amazon product listing

The words on your Amazon product listing are just as important as your images. The right text in the right places in your listing will help you come up in searches. In addition, the copy on your product page is a vital sales tool.

Strategic use of target keywords

Relevant keywords that work for SEO on your website will usually also work as backend keywords to optimize your Amazon product listings. If you’re unsure which are the right keywords, you can use an SEO tool like Moz or SEM Rush for keyword research on your Amazon product pages.

You can also get keywording information from Amazon’s search box. Start typing in a description of your product and see what Amazon auto-fills. That will be a common search phrase. If it fits your product, add it to your backend keywords.

Don’t stuff every keyword you can think of into your title. A couple of keywords can be helpful, but don’t overdo it. Make sure your title contains a short, accurate description of the product, including relevant details such as color, size, or model number. Don’t make the title any longer than it needs to be. Long titles are confusing rather than enlightening. A recommended length for a product listing title is around 200 characters.

For Amazon listing optimization, don’t put quotation marks in your search terms. In fact, avoid all punctuation marks in your search terms, if possible.

If a search term is already in your listing title, you don’t need to include it again in a search term field. However, if there are different spellings of a key term for your product, include the alternate spellings. For example, if you’re selling a pair of pants, you could add trousers and slacks to the search terms.

You don’t need to put common misspellings in the search fields. You also don’t need to add variations, such as t-shirt and t-shirts. Amazon’s search algorithm is smart enough to understand that these are the same thing.

Amazon product reviews

Create product pages that convert

You have to be selective about your keywords in the title, but feel free to include every possible relevant keyword on your product listing page. Include as much detail as you can about the item here. List all the specifications: power, batteries needed, dimensions, materials, warranties, etc. Detailed specs will ensure that your product appears when customers use the product filter to narrow their searches.

Amazon product listing image

Keep in mind that bullet points are much easier to read than dense paragraphs. Use bullet points to highlight your product features and the specs. It’s a good idea to bullet point at least five key product features for Amazon listing optimization.

Amazon product listing

Remember that your product page is your chance to convert a looker into a buyer. If someone has made it to your page, you’ve done something right. Your product ranked high enough in search. Your main image and product title made them want to click through. Now your product page needs to seal the deal. Providing detailed, relevant information helps build confidence in your product.

Refine your pricing strategy

Your price is one of the features that can bring people to your Amazon product listings. Amazon shoppers are often price-conscious. You can win the buy box by offering the lowest price.

However, you don’t want to shave your margins any thinner than you have to. If you undercut the competition by even $0.01, it can give your product listings an edge. Repricing software can help automate this process and save you a lot of time.

Selling low isn’t the only way to optimize your Amazon product listings. If your items are of higher quality, you can price them above other brands and still get sales.

Get product reviews

Customer reviews are like gold on Amazon. The more positive reviews you have, the more trust consumers will have in your Amazon product listings. Getting your customers to leave reviews is a delicate dance.

Amazon product reviews

You can’t ask a customer to give you a positive review or pay someone to rate your products. You are also only allowed to ask for a review once. Being pushy can get you into hot water with Amazon.

Amazon allows you to ask for a product review — gently. You can (and should) click the Request a Review button on your seller dashboard. Do this after the customer has received their order but before too much time has passed. A week or two after the purchase is a good rule of thumb.

If a buyer emails you with a question or issue following the sale, you may ask for a review in your reply email. Make your review request in neutral language, so it’s clear you’re not trying to solicit a positive review.

Go Prime with your shipping

Don’t overlook shipping when you’re working on Amazon listing optimization. Free shipping gives shoppers a warm and happy feeling about your product.

Amazon Prime

Prime shipping, which is both fast and free, is an even more significant incentive for Amazon shoppers. About 112 million people — around a third of the US population — are Prime members. Appealing to them will boost your conversion rates.

You can get a Prime tag by using Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA). You can also do your own order fulfillment or use a 3PL for seller-fulfilled Prime.

Prime and FBA sellers have ranked higher in Amazon searches in the past. However, Amazon may have broadened the algorithm to bump up items with fast fulfillment, even if they aren’t FBA. You can offer shipping that’s the equivalent of Prime by clicking on the 2-day shipping guarantee for your product listing.

Amazon Listing Optimization Tips

Why Amazon product listing optimization matters

Imagine that selling on Amazon is like being allowed onto the field in a giant stadium. The bleachers are full of people who might want to buy something. After all, they showed up at the stadium. Now your job is to get the attention of the people in the stands. But the field is full of other sellers, also trying to get people’s attention.

Amazon listing optimization allows the right customers to pick you out from the crowd. Sellers who have taken some or all of the suggestions above have seen their search rankings improve and their sales go up.

The Amazon Marketplace is a great place to set up an online business. Amazon product listing optimization is the key to make your business viable.