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September 14, 2021

A New Way to Increase Your Product Visibility: Amazon SERP Features

How to increase your sales on Amazon is a constant game. However, there is a new way to make your product appear multiple times in Amazon’s search results.

Amazon has been testing and releasing new features like Editorial Recommendations, Highly Rated, and more in the Search Engine Results Page (SERP). This allows some products to be featured multiple times for each search term.

In this article, we'll talk about special results on Amazon SERP that are different from traditional organic ones. They can be both free or paid. We call them Amazon SERP features, along the lines of Google SERP features.

Find out what experts have to say about Amazon SERP features, which ones are worth investing in, and what you need to place your product there.

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What are Amazon SERP features?

Amazon, as an e-commerce platform, is designed to provide a better experience to searchers and encourage them to purchase products on the platform. Amazon's SERP features (like Editorial Reviews or Top-Rated Products) are a way Amazon is trying to help shoppers purchase top-notch products.

These SERPs are designed not only to drive additional sales but push Amazon customers to products that have a history of positive customer experiences. As a seller, being featured in the SERP features highlighted below means more real estate for your listings and the opportunity to increase your overall conversion and sales.

Amazon Special Results Revealed: Editorial Recommendations, Amazon’s Choice, and More

Amazon SERP features include:

Free SERP features on Amazon

  • Editorial Recommendations
  • Amazon’s Choice Carousel
  • Top-rated from our brands
  • Other Carousel: Top-rated, Parent Pick, Sold by certified minority-owned businesses, Select products from Amazon Home, Climate-Pledge Friendly, Recommended by Amazon, etc.

Paid SERP features on Amazon

  • Highly Rated
  • Sponsored Brands
  • Sponsored Products
  • Sponsored Brands Video

Let's move on to what each of the SERP features means and what you can do to get yourself displayed there.

Free SERP features

  • Editorial Recommendations
  • Amazon’s Choice Carousel
  • Top-rated from our brands
  • Other Carousels

Editorial Recommendations

  • Trustworthiness for shoppers: High
  • Benefits: Significantly increases consumer trust when they see other people recommending your product
  • Suitable for: Established sellers who have products with a strong sales history and high review count

What are Amazon Editorial Recommendations?

Amazon’s Editorial Recommendations offer shoppers a product review to read, and then the platform will choose the best matching option for them. The widget includes a snippet of a review about the featured products and a carousel of products.

The product-related articles are written by third-party content creators enrolled in an affiliate program. Instead of promoting affiliate products on their website, bloggers will recommend and promote products directly on Amazon and receive a small commission in case of a sale. So, the publisher is incentivized to make your product sound incredible.

What else you should know:

  • Editorial Recommendations highlight a uniquely strong quality about each featured product. You can see in the image above that the publication highlights certain benefits: Best wired, Best ultra-light, and Best MMO. Each of these benefits capitalizes on top related keywords – in other words, the top reasons that motivate a customer to buy. Having certain benefits highlighted targets various shoppers’ intents and critical characteristics and makes it easier for them to decide.
  • If you don’t see Editorial Recommendations when you search for a keyword, it doesn’t mean that they don’t exist. The algorithm can include or not include different editorial recommendations at different moments of time or for different people.

Sometimes Amazon will approve multiple Editorial Recommendations for a given keyword, and Amazon will rotate through them to see which receives the best conversion rate.

Sellzone's Amazon Organic report in Amazon Traffic Insights knows for which keywords SERP Feature exists for sure.

Will Haire (BellaVix.com):

“This is an excellent program and, when coupled with an advertising strategy, is the best way to own the most real estate on very relevant search terms. One of the ways to get into this product is to have well-reviewed products that naturally get picked up for the program. This is difficult and is usually indicative of sales velocity and review rating. The other opportunity is to work with a broker like HBW Commerce who specializes in getting products listed under Editorial Recommendations.”

Steven Pope (My Amazon Guy):

“Getting into editorials on Amazon will require you paying a firm $1,000-$3,000 to arrange an article. Or you personally contacting dozens of editorial writers who will demand a free product, and it will take months to respond to you. The pandemic decimated this industry and many went under. I’ve seen mixed results on editorials and have personally used them as a test on my Momstir funny wine glasses. In my category, there are so many editorials it barely got any rotational visibility.”

How to get Amazon Editorial Recommendations

Although highly desired, Editorial Recommendations are also hard to target. Here's a set of criteria that must be followed to qualify:

  • 100+ reviews with at least a 3.8-star rating
  • Product has plenty of inventory in stock
  • No medical claims in product listing
  • Product is in the top 20% of the Best Seller Ranking list for its category
  • No potentially offensive words in the listing, for instance, anti-religious sentiment

Amazon doesn’t influence which products are mentioned within the content. So, if you meet these standards, you should contact the content creator directly.

To get into Editorial Recommendations:

1.Find keywords that are relevant to your product and trigger Editorial Recommendations on pages’ results.

There is a way to find the perfect keywords that trigger Editorial Recommendations on a listing in the Amazon Organic report in Amazon Traffic Insights.

With the latest update, the Amazon Organic report in the Traffic Insights tool is the most advanced reverse ASIN research tool on the market. The Traffic Insights tool provides an overview of traffic income for any product on Amazon and allows sellers to track their competitors, get an accurate picture of where potential customers are coming from on product listings, and optimize their promotional strategy accordingly.

2.Reach out to those publishers directly. There may be upfront or monthly fees once your product’s Editorial Recommendations are live on Amazon. There are also services that can facilitate finding you an author who can review your product.

If you have not yet met the criteria above, set a calendar reminder and apply for an Editorial Recommendation when you qualify in the future. Reaching this Amazon SERP feature is a great way to drive additional traffic and sales to your Amazon listings without spending money on PPC.

Amazon’s Choice

  • Trustworthiness for shoppers: High
  • Benefits: Increases consumer trust and encourages users to purchase the item
  • Suitable for: Sellers who sell products with a high rating and high review count

Note: We're not talking about Amazon’s black-and-orange “Amazon’s Choice” badge here, but a special carousel called Amazon’s Choice. However, the idea is the same.

There may be different types of Amazon’s Choice, like:

  • Amazon's Choice: Highly rated and well-priced products
  • Amazon's Choice: Customers shopped Amazon’s Choice for...

What does Amazon's Choice mean?

Amazon’s Choice carousel highlights three to four products with competitive prices, high ratings, low return rates, and high purchase rates. The feature aims to narrow shoppers' choices and help them make a purchase.

What else you should know:

  • A product doesn’t carry the Amazon’s Choice status across all Amazon, e.g., a product in the Amazon’s Choice carousel for the search “gaming mouse” won’t necessarily have Amazon’s Choice badge for related keywords like “gaming mouse wireless.”

Experts from Kaspien:

“Amazon has never fully disclosed how it identifies products for the Amazon Choice tag. However, Amazon Choice products share a set of criteria that we can use to deduce 5 factors:

  • Prime eligibility
  • Competitive pricing
  • High seller rating (the return rate, whether products arrive to the customer on time, and how quickly the seller responds to customer inquiries)
  • Many (and highly positive) customer reviews
  • Keyword density.

Amazon Choice’s reliance on customer reviews has led some sellers to buy fake reviews, but this practice should be avoided, as it creates a poor customer experience, erodes brand trust, and can result in seller account suspensions.”

Steven Pope (My Amazon Guy):

“Amazon’s Choice is overrated and, at best, Amazon’s way to push consumers to already converting products that it makes the most money on. No white hat tactics will help you gain a specific Amazon’s choice keyword. Focus instead on mass indexing and optimize the hell out of your product and detail page.”

How to get into Amazon’s Choice products

Will Haire (BellaVix.com):

“Getting the Amazon Choice feature on relevant keywords is about having a very relevant product with good reviews that is prime eligible at a competitive price point. This is where having a healthy Seller Rating also influences your ability to get the Choice Badge on your products for more keywords. Be sure your listing is optimized for search using the most relevant keywords in your title and bullets. Consider an advertising strategy to help train Amazon's algorithm on the best search terms that will lead to sales.”

Jordi Ordóñez (jordiob.com):

The Amazon's Choice feature, as Amazon itself says, "highlights highly rated, well-priced products available to ship immediately."

This means that we can earn Amazon's choice if we meet the following:

  • Good price
  • Immediate shipping (through Prime or Seller Fulfilled Prime)
  • Good number of reviews
  • High average review score
  • High and constant number of sales

Also, the more constant these parameters are, the longer the label will last, and its duration can be a few hours or weeks. Of course, duration will depend on those parameters and the competition. For example, "Impact & Dot Matrix Computer Printer Ribbons by Brady" is a super long tail keyword + includes brand keywords. That means 0 competition, so the label can last forever. But, on the other hand, "printer ribbon" is a highly competitive keyword, so there will be more volatility when it comes to retaining the label.

A nice clue to know what parameters Amazon values (apart from the 5 mentioned) to grant the Choice label is to look at the detail of the reviews.

When a product has a certain number of reviews, the aspects that Amazon values for the product are highlighted (beware, this does not apply in 100% of cases).

For example, in this product, we can see how the aspects valued by Amazon are:

  • Easy to install
  • Easy to lock
  • Easy to use
  • Versatility
  • Durability
  • Accession

What if I don't find those aspects highlighted on my products? Easy. Begin the process of writing a review, and you will find them on the review screen:

As always, there are no secrets or shortcuts to get the Amazon's Choice feature. You have to focus on what Amazon values and also provide a great price and strong customer service.”

Top-rated from our brands

  • Trustworthiness for shoppers: Medium
  • Benefits: Increases consumer trust and encourages users to purchase the item
  • Suitable for:Sellers who sell products with high ratings and high review counts

What is Top-rated from our brands?

Amazon owns over 400 private-label and exclusive brands. Top-rated from our brands is a way Amazon gives its products a visibility advantage in search results.

How to get into Top-rated from our brands

A brand cannot fall into this category unless it produces items for selling only by Amazon’s own brand or it is a manufacturer applying to Amazon’s Accelerator Program.

Other Carousels

  • Trustworthiness for shoppers: Medium
  • Benefits: Increases consumer trust by targeting very specific personal values/preferences/characteristics
  • Suitable for: Any sellers

What are Amazon’s carousels?

The carousel feature can have various names, including Top rated Amazon products, Parent Pick, Sold by certified minority-owned businesses, Select products from Amazon Home, Climate Pledge Friendly, Recommended by Amazon, Today's deals, etc.

Robyn Johnson (Marketplaceblueprint.com):

“Some of these carousels or SERP panels are generated by Amazon, so you cannot apply or pay for a spot in those placements. Usually, there is a call out with how the carousel is selected or a learn more link. For example, Parent Picks are highly rated products reviewed by customers who indicated to Amazon that they are parents.

Some carousels are based around deals that you could potentially set up within Seller Central or Vendor Central to be featured in Today’s Deals. These promotions are not available for all sellers and products. Many times, to be included for holidays means setting up deals well in advance of that period and might include a fee to Amazon.

There are some placements that you are only eligible for if you hold a specific badge/certification on Amazon. For the Climate Pledge Friendly badge, you must go through an approved partner to be certified.

Minority-owned business is one of the many diversity badges that require certification. You will not be eligible for these carousel placements unless you have gone through the approval process.”

Dan Saunders (ingenuitydigital.com):

“If you have any of these accolades, make sure you upload your proof, if you have a climate pledge, make sure you upload to vendor or seller central with the governing body and unique identifier to confirm authenticity. Make sure these governing bodies are recognized by Amazon (Speak to your rep or check in Q and A).

Go with the one that really speaks to your customers. You can't have them all on one listing, so be strategic with it. If you know your buyers, this won't be a problem if you don't try and build a persona first before going through all the hassle to get one.”

  • Highly Rated
  • Sponsored Brand Videos
  • Sponsored Brands
  • Sponsored Products

While before we talked about free SERP features, now we’re going to talk about paid special results.

Experts from Kaspien:

“Sponsored Products, Sponsored Brands, and Sponsored Brand Videos are all pay-per-click (PPC) ads that appear within the Amazon marketplace.

All three have keyword targeting options, and Sponsored Products and Sponsored Brand Videos also have product targeting options. In all cases, the ads operate on an auction system, where sellers set the maximum amount they are willing to pay-per=click for a given keyword or ASIN. Amazon then uses the bid and several other factors to select winners.

To increase the likelihood of winning the auction, sellers should incorporate their target keywords into the product detail pages. To increase the likelihood of conversions, sellers should optimize the product detail pages with professional images, informational and persuasive copy, and competitive pricing.”

Highly Rated

  • Trustworthiness for shoppers: High
  • Benefits: Increases consumer trust and encourages users to purchase the item
  • Suitable for: Sellers who advertise products with a high rating and high review count

What does Highly Rated mean?

Highly Rated is considered to be a type of ad set that promotes highly rated Sponsored Products (No. 8 on our list – keep reading). Although it’s not clear at this time whether this placement is free or paid, it is marked with “Sponsored” label by Amazon, and sellers can’t choose to be presented there. Amazon selects a group of similar products that have been rated highly by customers.

How to get into Highly Rated products

Highly Rated is limited to highly rated sponsored placements (based on the number and quality of reviews). Only those advertising would be eligible for this panel.

Brands have no control over whether their advertised products will show up in Highly Rated. However, if you get authentic reviews and positive ratings for your product listings, Amazon can add your product to this placement.

  • Trustworthiness for shoppers: High
  • Benefits: Show the product from its best side
  • Suitable for: Brand-registered sellers

What does Amazon Sponsored Brands Video mean?

Sponsored Brands Videos is one of the formats of Sponsored Brands, that is, keyword targeted, cost-per-click advertising. Your videos should be between 15 and 30 seconds and catch a viewer’s eye from the first second.

Vitalii Khyzhniak (Profit Whales):

“Sponsored Brands Video ad is a special type of advertising that allows its users to present all product advantages and functions in a video. Lifestyle videos help the product appear more relatable and simpler to use after purchase. In comparison to Sponsored Brands, Sponsored Brands Video advertises just one product. Nevertheless, it still improves brand awareness and, as a big plus, shows the product in a way pictures can't.”

What else you should know:

  • This kind of ad not only dedicates a lot of real estate to one product but also automatically plays a video when a potential customer scrolls by.
  • Considering that this feature is relatively new (it was introduced in early 2020), this is a great way to stand out from the competition.
  • When the video starts to play automatically, it has no sound, so make sure your message will be delivered even if it’s played on mute; for example, with the help of on-screen text.

Will Haire (BellaVix.com):

“Jeff Bezos’ best gift to advertisers. Across the board, video ads get the most engagement and tend to perform very efficiently compared to other ad types.

It's a bit more competitive in terms of CPC, mostly because of the supply. There is only one video ad that shows up in search vs. 3-5 Sponsored Product ads and 3 Sponsored Display ads, give or take.

This is an excellent opportunity to showcase the unique properties of your product, as well as a great opportunity to showcase your unique brand. We also recommend using subtitles in your video as most searchers will not have sound on.”  

Experts from Kaspien:

“Until recently, Sponsored Brand Videos could only appear on the search results page. However, Amazon is testing a product targeting option for Sponsored Brand Videos that allows them to target specific ASINs instead of keywords.

This product targeting option could prove effective at capturing shoppers’ attention on competitor listings and eroding their market share. Sellers could even target their own ASINs as a defensive strategy while simultaneously using it as an opportunity to cross-sell or upsell.

Sponsored Brand Videos should be short, include captions, and the value proposition should be easily understood even without audio or text. This is a perfect example of ‘show don’t tell.’”

How to get into Amazon Sponsored Brands Video

Since Sponsored Brands Video is part of Sponsored Brands advertising, the process for its launch is the same as described in the section above, and you need to be a brand-registered seller too.

Once you’ve uploaded your video, you will need to enter the keywords you want to target. If you haven’t identified the right keywords for your campaign so far, take advantage of the Keyword Wizard tool with a gigantic database of 200+ mln keywords. And here is how to power up your Amazon business with a smart keyword strategy.

Here are the requirements for your Sponsored Brands Video:

Video

  • MP4 or MOV file
  • 16:9 aspect ratio
  • 1280 x 720px, 1920 x 1080px or 3840 x 2160px
  • 23.976, 24, 25, 29.97, 29.98, or 30 fps
  • 1 Mbps or higher bit rate
  • H.264 or H.265 codec
  • 6-45 sec long
  • 500 MB or smaller
  • Main or baseline profile
  • Progressive scan type
  • 1 video stream only

Audio

  • Stereo or mono format
  • 44.1 kHz or higher sample rate
  • PCM, AAC or MP3 codec
  • 96 kbps or higher bit rate
  • No more than 1 audio stream

What shouldn’t be on your video:

  • Blurry, unclear, or unrecognizable visuals.
  • Creative elements that interfere with the legibility of ad templates, for example, the Sponsored tag or mute button unless the video has no audio.
  • Any customer reviews (including star ratings).
  • Deals, discounts, or other savings promotions.
  • Distracting images (for example, flashing, spinning, blinking, pulsating objects or text, or high-contrast transitions).
  • Distracting, shrill, unexpected or violent, and jarring sounds.
  • Illegible text, e.g., the same or similar color for text and background.
  • Poor audio or video quality.
  • Pressuring, combative, or urgent language intended to elicit a click or sale from the customer.

Prabhat Shah (DaytodayeBay):

“Sponsored brand videos have dedicated space on Amazon SERPs. Here are the three main targeting options that we have used successfully:

  1. 3-5 top converting keywords from SPA so that your ads have a top position in search and the space in video ads position.
  2. Product categories so that your product appear on the SERPs when the user searches for the keywords that are ranking other products in the categories.
  3. Competing products so that your product appears on the SERPs when the user searches for the keywords that are ranking competing products.”
  • Trustworthiness for shoppers: Medium
  • Benefits: Increase your brand awareness on Amazon
  • Suitable for:Brand-registered sellers

What are Amazon Sponsored Brands?

Sponsored Brands are cost-per-click (CPC) ads that feature your brand logo, a custom headline, and multiple products. They typically feature two to three of a brand’s products.

These ads appear in relevant shopping results and help drive the discovery of your brand among customers shopping for products like yours.

Experts from Kaspien:

“Sponsored Brands are banner ads that appear at the top of the search results page and feature either three products or a link to the Brand Store. Because this ad type has only one placement per page, it’s much harder to win.

As such, sellers should focus Sponsored Brands on their top-performing products and keywords. If you have a Brand Store, point your Sponsored Brands there, as it pulls shoppers into a branded digital storefront removed from the competition.”

Vitalii Khyzhniak (Profit Whales):

“Sponsored Brands ad is a perfect tool for increasing product visibility and developing brand awareness. The placements at the top and in the middle of the search result page enable the catching of customers' attention and boost conversion rate. Because of the ad's standing-out front-end features, Amazon viewers consciously or subconsciously memorize the brand's logo. As a result, they have more trust in the brand next time they are searching for similar products to those advertised.”

How to get into Amazon Sponsored Brands

To run your advertising campaign through Seller Central, you need to be a brand-registered seller.

Here's how to register your brand in Amazon's Brand Registry:

Then, follow these steps:

  1. Go to the “Advertising” tab in Seller Central, click “Campaign Manager,” then “Create campaign.”
  2. Choose “Sponsored Brands” as your campaign type.
  3. Specify the details: The date range for running your ad, a daily budget, the brand you’re going to advertise.
  4. Choose the ad format: Product collection, Store spotlight, or Video (the latter is worthy of being marked as a separate SERP feature, so read more about it).
  5. Choose at least three products to feature.
  6. Add your creative content, custom headline, image, logo, choose the order of your products.
  7. Choose whether you prefer keyword or product targeting, and submit for review.

Will Haire (BellaVix.com):

“Sponsored Brand ads are available for brand-registered brands and give us the opportunity to drive traffic to a storefront or a list of products.

The ad itself gives us the opportunity to showcase a suite of products like color variants or complimentary products. When we set up Sponsored Brand ads, we start with branded searches to ensure we are protecting our real estate and brand equity.

We will also target converting keywords and use a single root keyword theme and use that in our copy to help with relevancy and increase our likelihood of having a strong click-through rate as well as sales and ACoS.

The premise of this strategy is that seeing what you searched, using natural language, in the ad copy will get more engagement than something general like Buy My Brands Products! - Like most things in advertising, relevancy is the key to efficiency.”

  • Trustworthiness for shoppers: Medium
  • Benefits: Look very much like organic search results and increase your product’s visibility
  • Suitable for: Brand-registered sellers

What do Amazon Sponsored Products mean?

Amazon Sponsored Products are pay-per-click ads that Amazon shows a customer when they search for a product.

Will Haire (BellaVix.com):

“The most basic ad type that is going to get the most traffic and engagement. Sponsored product ads are targeting the bottom of the funnel and are keyword-oriented, making it an excellent opportunity to get in front of customers.

The performance will vary based on the retail readiness of your listings as well as the competitive landscape for your products. A rule of thumb, the more expensive the product is, the more consideration before purchase.”

Zach Zorn (MoneyNomad.com):

“Amazon’s sponsored product PPC campaigns are extremely powerful. I highly recommend that all sellers take advantage of this tool.

When starting a new campaign from scratch, I will let the campaign auto select keywords, and then I’ll review the keywords to manually set which keywords to target moving forward. Using sponsored products is also a great way to build sales velocity on newly listed products.”

How to get into Amazon Sponsored Products

Experts from Kaspien:

“Sponsored Products are the highest converting ad type on Amazon. There are multiple placements per search results page, making them easier to win. If you haven’t run Amazon advertising before, start here.

For beginners, focus on targeting the same keywords that you’ve integrated into your product detail page. As you expand your campaigns, try to limit yourself to only one product per ad group and one product per match type. This campaign structure allows you to see performance data at the product level, giving you the depth of insights to really fine-tune your campaigns.”

Vitalii Khyzhniak (Profit Whales):

“Sponsored Products ad introduces and promotes products in a unique and very effective way. It shows up in multiple places and conquers potential buyers with persistence, essential information, and a high-quality image.

Unlike other PPC ads, Sponsored Products give sellers an opportunity to launch automatic and manual campaigns. This way, advertisers can benefit from the perks of Amazon chosen keywords and the ones sellers pick on their own or with the help of professionals.”

Dan Saunders (ingenuitydigital.com):

“Make sure that the organics of your sponsored ads are properly sorted out before you begin. You always clean your house before you invite people over. I've seen 100s of campaigns that didn't do this and it ruined their CTR, ACOS and Roas.

If you've got video, make sure you use it, this will massively improve your CTR.

Make sure if you're targeting a competitor's products, with sponsored products, that you target like for like, if you're trying to sell drills, don't target saws just because they're your competitors’! I know this sounds obvious, but so many people target products that don't have a stronger USP or do different things to your products, so make sure you even the score by going like for like. Make sure they're not better than you! I know it's easy, I know it can be a point of ego, but if you’re water and they're an acid, don't target them just because you're both liquids!”

Final Words

To sum up, getting into Amazon SERP features can max out your listing performance. If you see that your products already meet the criteria for getting into free SERP features, the result you’ll get is worth the effort.

If you are in the launch phase or have recently launched a product, focus on paid SERP features as an easy way to push your product towards more sales.

Don’t forget to try out the Amazon Organic report in Amazon Traffic Insights. It’s a unique tool on the market showing if keywords trigger any special search results like 'Editorial recommendations' or 'Highly rated'. We offer a free trial, so you have nothing to lose!

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