Higher conversion rates boost your search ranking

Amazon’s search engine includes quite a number of different inputs. For instance, it includes your sales velocity and your historic sales – which gives you no help at all if you’re just starting out. It also includes your conversion rate – that is, the percentage of people who click on your product page and then go on to buy the product.

This is by far the easiest number of the three to control, and it’s the best one to concentrate on if you’re just getting started. Let’s look at a few ways to boost your conversion rate.

1. Social proof. Anyone who will recommend your product – particularly with a photo – is social proof. Mention of your previous successful products, particularly if this is an improved version. Try to get influencers interested in your product – yes, you may need to pay up for this.  And of course a specific type of social proof on Amazon is…

2. Reviews. But how do you get reviews if you’re a newbie? The answer is that Amazon has two programs that will help you. For $60 you can enrol in the early reviewer program, as long as you’re brand registered and have fewer than 5 reviews on the relevant listing. Or you could get on to the Vine program, which uses reviewers Amazon has noticed as giving frequent, useful reviews – all you have to do is give away your product. This is a really great deal, as the only cost to you is giving away free product and compared to the early reviewer program, you’re likely to get a more in-depth review. The review rate is also really high.

You can also use the ‘request a review’ button within Amazon Seller Central, for each buyer order. That can increase the number of people leaving reviews from a miserable 1% to nearer 4-5%.  You can also include a review request with the product (but there are very precise rules – for instance, you can’t ask for only good reviews).

3. Make sure your listing is top notch. Your copy needs to be relevant to the keywords, you need to state the features and benefits in a convincing way, and you need to answer the kinds of questions customers might have about the product. It’s surprising how many vendors miss out basic information such as dimensions or colour choices.

In particular, if you have a product for children or pets, don’t forget the big question most potential customers have – “Is it safe?” Tell them yes, it is – and why.

4. Photos are incredibly important so make sure yours do as much work for you as possible. Use all the photo slots you’re allowed, make sure you have at least one ‘lifestyle’ photo showing a happy user, and show relevant infographics (eg total height of your stuffed toy or comparison with rival products).

5. Optimise for mobile. 24 percent of shoppers are using mobile devices – make sure they get a good view of your product. That’s where having infographics is much better than just writing reams of text, because mobile users are more likely to see it and pay attention.

6. Engage with customers – if you get customer questions answer them, give the specific details they’re looking for, and build up a good knowledge resource. If customers see that instead of giving a stock response, you’ve given a thoughtful and useful answer every time, they’re far more likely to trust your brand and buy your product.

For instance, if someone asks “what width of line will I get with this pen?” don’t answer “medium” – mention the variables (eg how hard do you press) and then actually measure how wide the line is. If someone’s working on an art project or a technical drawing they may need to know.

Follow these techniques and you should improve your conversion rate. And remember – always be relevant. The more your content uses and relates to the keywords that brought customers to you, the more relevant it is, and the more likely you are to convert a browser to a buyer.

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