Why you need to update your Amazon product listings

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When you go in a bricks and mortar store and it feels a bit tired, you know it. The Christmas decorations are still up and it’s July? It doesn’t entice. You probably will walk out of there without buying anything.

Amazon product listings are the same. They may have been great and state-of-the-art a couple of years ago, but need a refresh; the online equivalent of a lick of paint and a new window display.

But how do you know which pages really need updating? And where should you focus your effort?

One thing that should tip you off is when a previously high-performing product starts to flatline, or even see sales falling. Of course, there could be other reasons for this, so using the Search Query Performance Dashboard in Seller Central (which you’ll find under ‘brand analytics’) can help you pinpoint where things are going wrong.

If you think of the journey from a customer search to a sale as a funnel, you want to see where your business is leaking away.

Start at the top by looking at a low click through rate compared to impressions. This says you’ve got something displaying on the search result page their stops people actually clicking through to your listing.

So what are the things that a user is going to see when they get their search results? They’ll see your main image, product title, and price. Looking at these, they’ll decide whether to click or not.

You can look at how your click through rate has developed over the last six months or so. You can also look at how it compares to your competition. This is one of the really interesting pieces of information that the SQPD gives you. If you’re doing worse than the competition and your price doesn’t seem to be the issue, then check the images and title.

If your title isn’t clear, you need to rewrite. If it is too generic, you also need to rewrite.

“Thermos flask insulated 32 48 64 ounces lid hot and cold aluminum” isn’t clear. What’s with the numbers? Oh, I see, they are alternatives. Or is this for three different bottles? And what is the word “lid” doing there? Customers will probably give up, and go on to a product title that makes more sens.

On the other hand “water bottle” is too generic. Try something like “vacuum insulated lightweight water bottle keeps drink cold 24 hours in 10 different colors”. That gives a lot of information and features a customer benefit, too.

The next stat you need to look at is add to cart, compared to clicks. That’s your conversion rate; people who came to your product page, but they didn’t buy. So if they dropped out at this point, there’s something wrong with your product listing. It may need a rewrite. Again, you can check your conversion rate against competitors. It may be worth making a spreadsheet with your rate against the sector median, to keep that information in the long term so you can easily track whether you are falling behind.

Basically, you’re using the dashboard to track your potential buyers along the sales journey and see where they drop out.

Then you also need to track return rates, because even once a sale has been made, the product can get returned. That hurts your ranking and it hurts your pocketbook.

Check out what went wrong. For instance you may simply need to point out this is not a professional product, only intended for light use. Just including that as a bullet point could reduce your returns dramatically.

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