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Amazon PPC Strategy – The Automatic Campaign

Mike Zagare
Founder PPC Entourage
February 16, 2021
5 min read

Amazon sellers who are seeking to discover more about their target audiences, find new/relevant keywords to target, and increase the visibility of their products on Amazon, MUST take advantage of Automatic campaigns. 

In this 3-part series, you will learn why sellers should include Automatic campaigns as part of their overall Amazon PPC strategy, how to properly setup these types of campaigns, and how to leverage the data revealed by them to increase/drive sales.

What is an Automatic Advertising Campaign?

Automatic Campaigns are when Amazon decides when to display a seller’s ad based on the keywords identified from the title, description, and other sections from the product listing.

Auto campaigns help sellers to fill-in any gaps they may have in their advertising efforts. They help sellers to get more Impressions, higher visibility, and Reach. They provide key insights into what Amazon thinks about their products.

The main goal of running an Automatic campaign is to obtain online shoppers’ search term data. Automatic Campaigns allow sellers to discover long-tail keywords they may have never guessed that people would search for. They also permit sellers to research new keywords, search terms, ASINs, categories, and even new products for them to sell. 

Auto Campaigns are great for beginners. They are easy to set up. New sellers can go into discovery mode and find which search terms work best for them. 

The Search Term Report acts as a gateway into the minds of online shoppers.

Amazon sellers should download these reports from their campaigns on a regular basis, in order to find out the conversion rates of the keywords they’re bidding on. Sellers can see which keywords have the highest conversion rates.

The intelligence gained from Automatic campaigns can be implemented to improve a seller’s overall Amazon advertising footprint. For example, a seller can take the ASINs found in the Search Term report that have two or more sales attributed to them, and use Product Targeting to target these ASINs across Sponsored Products ads, Sponsored Brands ads and Sponsored Display ads. Sellers can also gain insights into how to upsell and bundle their products in order to generate additional sales and revenue.

What is automatic targeting?

An Automatic-targeting ad focuses on keywords that Amazon’s algorithm determines to be related to a seller’s product listing. Targeting helps sellers to optimize their advertising campaigns which in turn gives them more sales. 

Over time, Amazon uses the data it collects from clicks and purchases, then adjusts the ads to better suit the seller’s listing to increase conversions. 

For auto-targeting campaigns, sellers have to select the products they want to advertise and set a budget for the campaign. The rest of the work is done by Amazon.

Pro Tip 1: Amazon tracks clicks and spends, usually taking 2 to 4 days to process. It may take up to 2 to 4 weeks to gather enough data to see which campaigns are doing well. But once this data is available, it can be applied to future campaigns, improving the effectiveness of your Amazon advertising.

 

What are the different Automatic Campaign Setups?

There are different ways to setup Automatic campaigns.

Setup #1: Default Bid – sellers can place each of their SKUs into a separate Automatic campaign using the default bid setting.

Setup #2: Default by Targeting Group – There are four targeting groups: Close match, Loose match, Substitutes and Complements. The first two, ‘Close match’ and ‘Loose match’, target keywords, whereas the following two, ‘Substitutes’ and ‘Complements’ target products. 

Ppcimage1‘Close match’ and ‘Loose match’ targeting groups represent the degree of closeness to keywords found in a seller’s listing. Products that complement a seller’s product are matched through the ‘Complements’ group, while products that the algorithm identifies as similar or competing with a seller’s product are matched through the ‘Substitutes’ targeting group.

A seller can specify a default bid at the Ad group level. Each targeting group can have separate bids, as well as separate reporting of Impressions, clicks, sales, ACoS and more.

Setup #3: Low Bid Targeting – these are “catch-all” types of campaigns (using low bids), intended to help fill-in any gaps in a seller’s PPC strategy. 

Bidding Options for Auto Campaigns

Bidding options for Automatic campaigns include:

Dynamic Bids: Down Only – Dynamic Bids may decrease bids up to 100% in real time when it is deemed less likely to convert into sales.

Dynamic Bids: Up & Down – Adjusts bids in real time (by a maximum of 100%) when a seller’s ad may be more likely to convert to a sale and lowers a seller’s bids when it’s less likely to convert to a sale.

Fixed Bids – Unlike Dynamic Bids, a seller’s exact bid is used. This will result in more impressions, but fewer conversions from the Ad Spend budget.

Ppcimage2

Previously, the default setting was Dynamic Bids: down only, but now the default setting is Dynamic Bids: up and down. This could potentially cost sellers a significant portion of their Ad Spend budget. 

It’s recommended that the default setting should be changed to Dynamic Bids: down only immediately. After sellers have given the Auto campaign sufficient time to collect data, and if it’s performing well, they can test out Dynamic Bids: up and down.

Pro Tip 2: If Amazon is not familiar with your product (new product launched), it’s recommended that you use the Dynamic Bids: down only setting. This will take into account your conversion rate.

Pro Tip 3: There are 6 Options for Determining Amazon Ad Campaign Starting Bids that will help a newer Amazon seller who may not be sure as to how to determine an appropriate starting bid when using an auto campaign.

Auto campaigns should be an important part of your PPC strategy. With more sellers leveraging Amazon PPC as part of their advertising strategy, it becomes harder and more costly to run profitable ads. That’s why you must have a defined PPC strategy in place in order to help you to achieve your advertising goals on Amazon.

Automatic campaigns can help you to create specific strategies for promoting your products and brand. They are able to provide key insights into how online shoppers search for your products and can highlight the most important keywords that these potential customers use. 

In part 2 of this series on Automatic campaigns, we will be looking at the different ways to optimize these campaigns to get the maximum results from your advertising dollars.

 

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