Google SEO Vs Amazon SEO: Decoding The Algorithms

Differences and similarities you should always be aware of.

Amazon is more important than ever. Two years ago, the company surpassed Google in product search volume – if you can get your product near the top of Amazon’s search pages, you’re in luck. Unfortunately, too many sellers try to adopt their Google SEO knowledge to Amazon (hint: it doesn’t work).

Amazon SEO just isn’t the same, and this post from Travis Jamison at CXL clarifies the main differences between Amazon SEO and Google SEO. Let’s take a look at some of the similarities and differences between the two:

What’s the same search engine optimization wise?

Amazon's platform considers some factor more than another factor when it comes to your product listing. Here are the 3 common SEO practices that will help your performance in both:

  • Relevant keywords matter to make the sale
  • Click-through rate is still a proxy for relevance
  • Hardly anyone gets to page 1, just like any search engine, really

The basic difference that sets these platforms apart is that they fundamentally do not have the same end goal. Organic performance doesn't mean the same thing for Amazon SEO as it does for Google SEO.

What’s different? Here are the major differences on Amazon to boost your SEO

Organic rankings in Amazon work a bit differently. This ecommerce search algorithm aims to identify and direct potential buyers based on a variety of factors. Here are the most important ones you have to know to develop the proper approach:

Keyword integration has a huge impact

Single use of keywords is sufficient, as long as they’re relevant. This can help you show up when a human enters a query in Amazon's search bar. Keywords stuffing can be easier on Amazon (please don’t do it on Google), and here’s what experts suggest:

  • Title: include the product, material, quantity, brand, and color in the title. Go for long tail keyword opportunities here to have a positive impact on conversions. 
  • Product description: Amazon prefers bullets over walls of text. This is different from many SEO approaches that recommend writing really long blocks of content to use in product descriptions. Organic traffic for this product search engine is a bit different, always keep that in mind.
  • Backend keywords: backend keywords do not get shown to users. This is where you can get loose with keyword stuffing by including short-tail keywords, related terms, common misspellings, and foreign-language equivalents. 

Optimize for the user, this is business growth works on Amazon

Amazon app on a Samsung Galaxy mobile phone
Photo credit Christian Wiediger
  • Amazon is focused on sales and customer searchers. Just like Google Analytics, Amazon provides analytics to help sellers figure things out. Focus on copywriting that persuades the user to buy by analyzing relevant searches. You need an in-depth description, especially if you are facing 3P sellers.
  • External quality links are valuable if they result in traffic: Google interprets backlinks as a mark of authority. Amazon considers them as a source of valuable traffic to your sales funnel.
  • Internal PPC traffic is less relevant than running Google Ads. It does influence your position but not enough to rely on it to plan all of your marketing campaigns around this.
  • Clicks vs. conversions: click-through rates (CTR) and conversion rates (CR) are critical. CTR is about listing pertinency and the CR determines how many purchases (conversions) you can generate. 

Seller authority remains a vital ranking factor. Your search ranking can be influenced by: 

  • How long sellers have been on Amazon
  • The percentage of returns
  • Overall feedback from customers (including positive reviews)

Conclusion: on Amazon, you can focus more on satisfying the user rather than algorithms…

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