Facebook Ads can be a game changer for Amazon FBA sellers. While it takes a bit of effort, marketing off-Amazon lets you take a lot more control over your business.
In this article, we’ll discuss how to increase Amazon sales using Facebook Ads. Do it right and you’ll get better rankings, more reviews, more sales & deeper customer relationships.
All this adds up to explosive growth and more control over your Amazon business.
By avoiding the mistakes that many sellers make with Facebook Ads and employing the success strategies mentioned below, you’ll be well on your way.
Take Control of Your Amazon Marketing
One of the biggest problems for Amazon sellers is a lack of control over your business.
You’re at the mercy of Amazon, their terms, and their search algorithm.
One change to the way they show search results, and no one finds your product. Or, you could put a toe outside the line (whether intentionally or not), and get banned by Amazon.
If that happens, you have no more business. Amazon owns all your customers, and they have the discretion to let you sell on their platform or not.
Make no mistake, having access to millions of Amazon customers is a good thing. But it’s important to build a bit of defense for you and your business.
Enter Facebook Ads…
Advertising on Facebook does that.
First, by running your own ads and driving your own traffic, you can replicate this to drive customers to your own store, should you need to.
Second, driving traffic from outside of Amazon lets you build a list of customers.
Per Amazon’s terms, you can’t try to get your Amazon customers’ contact details (email, for instance).
That means without Amazon, your business has to start from square one, with no customer base.
Grow Your Email List Outside of Amazon
But if you get to potential customers first – before they reach Amazon – you can freely capture contact details from those customers, and build a customer list you own.
This allows you to build a valuable customer list for future marketing campaigns, product launches, or to kick off a new store if you have to.
It will also increase the valuation of your FBA business, if you ever want to sell.
Finally, Facebook Ads give you a way to break the circular problem of sales and rankings, and give your products the initial visibility needed to start selling.
Success on Amazon is All About Visibility
The circular nature of sales and rankings is one of the biggest reasons it’s hard to launch products on Amazon.
You need sales to rank. But you need rankings to get sales.
Facebook campaigns help you get the initial visibility you need to make sales before your product is ranking. Instead of relying on someone searching for your product and the Amazon search algorithm showing it highly, you put your product in front of potential customers.
A Facebook Ad campaign can give your product momentum, in the form of sales velocity, which builds into visibility in search rankings and eventually organic Amazon sales.
Compared to launch services, which provide sales boosts, Facebook Ads contribute to both short-term and long-term growth goals.
The short-term growth comes by building a pattern of sales, so you can start to rank.
Long-term growth is the ability to build a customer list, which most launch services don’t give you. Over time this list will help you scale, to rank products at will and launch additional products, with diminishing costs.
And, again, it is protecting your business if, all of a sudden, you can’t rely on Amazon sales for any reason.
Most of what we’ve discussed so far is not exclusive to Facebook Ads. You could drive traffic from other channels and still get the same results.
However, Facebook is generally considered the best.
One reason is the massive base of users on Facebook. There’s estimated to be 4.4 billion internet users in the world, and more than half (2.4 billion) are on Facebook.
The platform hit 220 million users in the United States alone in 2017, and has only gone up since.
The goal of advertising is to reach as many people who fit your target demographic as possible. With Facebook Ads, there is definitely no shortage of people.
Facebook’s tools for targeting are another reason to choose this channel for advertising. With all the criteria you can use to restrict your target audience, it’s a lot easier to focus in on your ideal customer profile with Facebook Ads.
All that being said, there are still other options for paid ads that can be effective. Most notably, Google Ads and Amazon PPC.
While they both have a time and place, and can easily be used alongside Facebook Ads, they generally aren’t quite as good.
Facebook Ads vs Google
The Google Ads platform is huge for advertisers. In fact, its share of total US ad spend is #1, almost 2x Facebook.
However, for e-commerce (such as Amazon stores), Facebook generally comes out ahead. Generally speaking, the cost per click and cost per action is cheaper on Facebook, which is important for smaller online businesses on a tighter budget.
The main difference between the two, and the main reason Facebook is a better option, is targeting.
For Facebook Ads, you can go out and proactively target your customers. While Google Ads are keyword-based, and dependent on people going out and searching for your product’s keywords.
These days, people usually go to Amazon first if they want to search for something to buy. So that can make Google Ads redundant a lot of the time. Facebook Ads, on the other hand, allow you to target fresh customers, and grow your audience a lot better.
Facebook Ads vs Amazon PPC
The other big dog in paid ads is Amazon PPC. Also known as Amazon Sponsored Products ads, this is where you pay to have your products shown higher in Amazon’s search results for your chosen keyword.
Amazon PPC is extremely effective. Purely for sales velocity, they may be better than Facebook Ads, as there is higher buyer intent. People searching on Amazon are there because they want to buy something.
But the big advantage of Facebook ads is list building. As mentioned earlier, you can’t build a list from your organic Amazon sales, and Amazon PPC is the same. Facebook ads allow you to build that long-term value of a customer list.
As Amazon PPC becomes more competitive, Facebook Ads are also starting to become a cheaper option.
3 Big, Common Mistakes with Facebook Ads
Facebook Ads are underutilized by Amazon sellers, largely because many of these sellers don’t know how to run effective ad campaigns. Thus, they decide Facebook Ads don’t work.
There are a few common mistakes that come up when Amazon people run ads on Facebook, all of which are easily fixable.
Mistake One: Bad listings
When someone clicks on your ad, that’s not the end of the story. The person still needs to decide to buy your product, and go through the checkout process on Amazon.
That means your listing needs to be set up to convince people to buy your product. You should have compelling copy, clear and appealing images, and a unique value prop.
Even on your listing, customers still see Sponsored Product ads for similar products. If you don’t give shoppers a good reason to choose YOUR product, there’s nothing stopping them from making an extra click and buying someone else’s.
Additionally, many sellers don’t have their listings optimized for keywords. This makes a big difference to how your product performs after your Facebook campaign ends. Ideally, you’ll take the momentum of your Facebook campaign and convert it to organic sales for high-volume keywords.
Make sure you have an in-depth keywords strategy, and relevant parts of your listing (title, bullet points, backend keywords) are set up to target valuable search terms.
Without this, your sales are going to come to a halt as soon as your ads do.
Mistake Two: Driving traffic straight to Amazon
You might not realize it, but sending traffic straight from Facebook Ads to your Amazon product listing is a big mistake.
Why is it a mistake? Isn’t it better to reduce the steps someone has to go to buy your product?
The problem is, even if you get some sales, this is going to do more harm than good to your rankings.
Conversion rates on Amazon average around 13% (much higher for Amazon Prime customers). While general e-commerce are much lower, generally 3% or less.
This is because people searching on Amazon are in buying mode already. They’re on Amazon because they’re looking for something to buy. People who see your Facebook Ads most likely aren’t.
The end result is, people you send to Amazon from your Facebook Ads are likely to convert at a lower percent than organic Amazon customers. This means you conversion rates will drop. And since conversion rate is a big factor in Amazon’s search algorithm, so do your rankings.
The other reason this is a mistake is that you’ve missed your chance to build a list.
The key to building a customer list for Amazon sellers is capturing their details before they reach Amazon.
So while it may seem counter intuitive to add an extra step to the sales process, this will actually benefit you in the long run.
The best way to do it is creating a sales funnel for your Facebook to Amazon marketing strategy.
Usually this will be done by sending your customers to a landing page for your product, before they go on to your Amazon listing.
Landing Page Benefits
- The landing page filters out people not ready to buy. They bounce from the landing page, and as a result, don’t hurt your Amazon conversion rate.
- You have the chance to collect contact info and build your list.
- You collect Facebook Pixel data, which you can use for retargeting and fine-tuning your ad campaigns.
A landing page is also a great way to send out discount coupon codes. These are an incentive for people to give up their contact info, as well as a way to drive more sales and conversions on Amazon.
You can use a software tool like LandingCube to create a coupon-distribution landing page for your Amazon products in just a few minutes.
An alternative sales funnel you could use is a Facebook JSON ad. This is an ad that opens a Messenger conversation when a customer clicks the call-to-action.
You’ll then use a Facebook Messenger chatbot to subscribe them to your Messenger list, send a discount promo code, and give them a link to your Amazon product.
JSON ads can be a way to reduce conversion costs, by setting up a low-friction sales funnel.
Mistake Three: Bad split testing (or none at all)
The third big mistake is sellers using poor or non-existent split testing on their campaigns.
One of the most important things when running ads is testing and optimizing. It’s not often that you’ll get everything 100% right on the first go. It takes some split tests (also known as A-B tests) to find out what recipe works best.
Now, if you’re not testing at all, that’s one thing.
However, many people are doing split tests, but they’re doing them wrong.
A split test or A-B test has to test ONE variable. That means everything else has to be the same, except for the one thing you’re testing for.
A lot of people try to test multiple variables in the same test. Because of this, you aren’t able to tell what caused any change in performance.
For example – you run an ad to a different audience, with a different image, and different ad copy.
Say one performed much better than the other. How do you know why it performed better?
You can test all these things, even at the same time. But make sure you can isolate the variable you’re testing. Keep everything the same, except change the image. Then keep everything the same, but change the audience you’re showing it to.
That lets you put the results against each other, and what changes made a positive (or negative) difference.
There are a few high-value tests you should always be running inside of your ad campaigns.
- Audiences – test who sees your ads. You might want to test a lookalike audience based off your past Amazon customers, a lookalike audience narrowed down by several interests, and a cold audience based just off demographics and interests.
- Images – test several different types of image. Examples can include regular product photos, lifestyle photos, and changing the text/graphic overlays on your image.
- Copy – generally you want to test short-form versus long-term copy. You might also want to test things like using emojis or not.
When you’re running LandingCube campaigns with Facebook Ads, another test you can run is email vs Messenger opt-ins, to see which is more effective for your audience.
It’s best to have a testing sequence in place when you begin a campaign. This might look like:
- On days 0-3: test audience
- Then days 4-6: test images
- Days 7-9: test copy
After that time you should have some data on which variables work best. Next time you run a campaign, you’ll be able to get better results straight away by using what you’ve learned in your split tests.
Take Control of Your Amazon Business with Facebook Ads
If you’re active in Amazon seller communities, you will have heard the horror stories.
Some involve sellers getting their account suspended after being wrongly flagged by Amazon’s algorithm. Others were the target of black-hat tactics from other sellers.
You’ll never be 100% safe from this kind of thing. What you can do, is protect yourself if something does go wrong, by taking full control of your e-commerce business.
Learn how to drive traffic with effective Facebook Ad campaigns and you can not only boost your Amazon rankings, but build a business that is no longer fully reliant on Amazon to survive.