What We Learned From Amazon's A10 Algorithm Update
Let's sort out some facts at the beginning. First of all, Amazon had no "official" update of its algorithm from A9 to A10. But recently, many changes to the Amazon algorithm have been noticed, and they force opposite values. A9 had PPC on full power, leading shoppers where sellers wanted them to be. The new Amazon’s A10 algorithm lets customers find their luck by awarding shops with neat and optimized product descriptions with first positions.
Even though it feels like A/B testing, it definitely moved the Amazon community toward working harder on their product descriptions, and we couldn't be happier!
The difference between the A9 algorithm and the A10 algorithm
Before we go over the differences, both updates have one thing in common: they aim at better traffic and more sales for all Amazon sellers. Amazon’s A9 algorithm was created to improve rankings with search keywords, PPC, and paid adverts. In essence, this algorithm was made to help those who choose to use PPC and paid adverts. Was it more helpful for the money spent? You could say so.
Amazon’s A10 algorithm has a different goal. It helps sellers get a higher product rank in the search results by giving the advantage to products that are most viewed or clicked on, most bought, and most likely to be purchased. To make things even more competitive, we can now see competitors' products right below ours.
Clearly, Amazon made this algorithm change to boost organic sales of those who took the time to work on their product description and keyword research. So, did they just give the advantage to people who can optimize their shops and know a bit more about Amazon SEO? Yes, it seems like it. And we're not even mad!
Does Amazon use the A9 or the A10 algorithm in 2022?
According to websites focused on Amazon sellers, Amazon unofficially updated its algorithm to A10 this year. The new Amazon’s A10 algorithm differs from A9, and it focuses on customer experience. While surfing on Amazon, customers will see products that are most accurately related to what they typed in the search bar — instead of products with the highest profit margins, as we had with the A9 algorithm.
What we had to explain to our clients when Amazon updated its algorithm to A10
First of all, our clients are aware that selling on Amazon means working along with its algorithm. Besides the general rules we follow for Amazon shops, we continuously educate our clients about what needs to be "fixed" to compete in the market.
The things we talked about the most are:
- Seller’s authority
- Keyword research
- Updating product descriptions
- Amazon SEO
- Organic and internal sales
- Product page optimization
- Images that can tell all about the product
If you believe that all sellers have all these segments figured out, think again. Sure, they ARE aware of the importance of good quality photos and SEO. Still, they also believe that quality photos mean lots of photos taken with their mobile phone, and that repeating one keyword over and over is enough to cover the SEO.
So, this is how we explained it:
It is an essential part of a success story because customers appreciate sellers that are longer on the market, with excellent ratings, many positive reviews, and recommendations. Since we all know that great authority doesn't happen overnight, sellers must be aware that all their actions are considered.
It needs to be done by a professional. Keyword research can't possibly last around ten minutes for an entire Amazon store. Sometimes our clients have some basic knowledge and the willingness to learn, and that's great, but professionals have experience and expensive tools that most sellers can't even use. Keyword research isn't an easy task, and it's the most important one, to be honest. A poor keyword choice can seriously impact the ranking on Amazon.
They are not easy to write, and once sellers get some of them completed, they tend to believe that they don't need any future updates. But they do. Maybe you sold out some of the color variants of a sweater. Perhaps the product changed, and you need to alter the features and specifications. After all, maybe the search queries changed, and you need to implement some new keywords. There are millions of reasons why sellers need to take care of their product descriptions, and we can talk about it for hours. And sometimes, we actually do.
If you're looking for a definition, it is the "process of constant improvement of the quality of Amazon shop pages to increase the visibility and drive traffic to the store." So, it’s similar to Google SEO.
Here is what is different:
- Amazon customers utilize different keywords when typing in the search bar. After all, there are almost no long-tail keywords in the form of a question. All keywords are product-focused, and they contain features and specifications. People use Google to learn more about some products and then switch to Amazon once they know what they want.
- Google algorithm ranking factors for backlinks in 2022 weigh 15% and are expected to be lower each year. So, we still care about backlinks and their quality, and Amazon prefers a blog post with direct links to your product listings. But, this isn't always the best scenario. Sending traffic directly to the product listing can create many views, so your total sales will look disproportional to the number of those views and directly affect your ranking on Amazon.
- Amazon focuses on conversions and CTR, while Google SEO focuses on CTR.
Organic and internal sales
Organic sales happen when a shopper finds a product and buys it from the non-advertised search results. This sale type became very important to Amazon once it understood that Pay-Per-Click (PPC) sales don't bring lots of customer satisfaction. In other words, this is Amazon urging its sellers to adopt an organic SEO strategy instead of using PPC. SEO-optimized shops surely give long-term benefits, especially if you can optimize your shops and crush your competition wisely. Seems like a fair fight now, right?
Internal sales come from the same idea. Once they're here and shopping, let's offer something related to that product. The "Frequently Bought Together" section will also affect search rankings if used by a customer. It's a win-win!
Product page optimization
It became super-relevant overnight. As if someone stopped the machine and said: "Ok, why are customers visiting so many shops, searching for so many details, just to leave and not finish their purchase anywhere?" All the signals led to "not enough info." We've all seen those one-photo-only and one-line-only explained products, but those days are gone.
With spreading awareness of the optimization of webshops, people are excited to see the same effort from each Amazon seller. Optimized shops are great for search engines, users, and sellers, and there is absolutely no reason to vote against them.
Let’s not forget the importance of “native” translation. Andromachi Dimitriadou said in one of the articles: “Having your listing and other branding materials translated by a native-speaking translator who’s specialized in working with Amazon sellers can do wonders to help you showcase your product in the best way possible to your new potential customers. You’ll now be speaking to them in their language, breaking the first barrier that may be holding them from making a purchase.” And I couldn’t agree more.
Sometimes, sellers need help from specialists. It can end up being quite expensive, especially if sellers decide to run PPC ads planning to take the best positions. Finding a seller who is focused on their brand and not taking any chances with their business is something we all love to see.
Images that can tell all about the product
These images will end the era of a one-photo-show, which nobody really appreciated. People want to see all the angles, details, specifications, etc. And everything can be presented with images. The more, the merrier! But be careful — more photos don't mean fewer words in the product description and specification segment. You are simply providing the information in two different forms.
What's the catch with Amazon’s A10 algorithm?
With this algorithm update, Amazon wants to offer more relevant results and prevent having so many unqualified listings ranking higher in the search results just because of PPC.
This way, products with high buyer appeal will surpass the competitors’ products. Logically, a sale from an organically generated click has a bigger impact with Amazon’s A10 algorithm update than it had with the A9 algorithm.
Amazon wants sellers to work harder on their product descriptions because a detailed description of a product is the greatest benefit for the customers. This will lead shoppers directly to the results they are looking for instead of the recommended or other search products or product ads.
The most relevant, popular, and highly ranked shops on Amazon will surely benefit by being displayed at the top of the results. To stay well-positioned organically, make sure to have lots of organically generated clicks. There is no better way to gain relevancy!
So, to wrap up — yes, the ranking factors of Amazon have changed, and so did the weighting of the relevancy. The focus is on the customer's search ending with the most relevant results.
Do we all need more highly relevant search results and fewer scam-sellers who get away with unqualified listings ranking higher in the search results? Yes, we do!
About the author
Ines Maras Puškarević is a Junior SEO Executive at Sellers Alley. She lives and breathes SEO, even in her free time. Ines has no luck with plants but keeps on bringing them home.
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