We all understand the importance of product visibility – placing your product in front of the right customer for the right product search. If you can master this formula you have the best chance of creating a successful, high conversion Amazon listing.

There are a number of methods available to the seller to achieve this goal – PPC advertising and organic ranking based purely on SEO, the two most common strategies.

Paid visibility is shown by Amazon with the ‘Sponsored tag’, as shown here. These are the current top three spots for the magnesium search term.

PPC (or Sponsored Advertising) allows you to bid for advertising space in prime locations on the search page, for a price. You can bid on the specific relevant terms you want to appear for.

Organic ranking is achieved through consistent sales linked to a particular search term. Not all search terms are the same – Some are more valuable to your product than others and we want to be seen as the top result for these high value terms.

So you might ask the question, how does a well optimised listing with good, up-to-date SEO make a difference when paying for advertising? We’re paying for the service after all, we should be able to advertise for any keyword we like!

The answer comes down to one key property inherent to Amazons’ search function – Indexing.

Indexing, simply put, is the process by which Amazon decide whether or not to show your product for a particular search. If you’re not indexed, nobody will ever see your product – Advertising or not. You’re invisible. So, how do you index?

”Include the keyword or phrase you would like to index for in your listing Title or Search Terms.”

How do I know if my listing is Indexed?

We use the Helium 10 index checker to run an index lookup on all our keywords before and after optimisation.

This powerful feature allows you to search your ASIN alongside a set of keywords and have the status of your listings index checked.

The two types of index:

Traditional ASIN: If indexed to this dictionary you can be organically shown in search for these search terms.

Field ASIN: If indexed to this dictionary you are in the advertising catalogue. You can set up PPC campaigns and your listing is eligible to show.

Storefront Index: is not related to this topic and a little more complex, so it will be the subject of a future post. So stay subscribed!

What if i’ve included a keyword in my listing but I’m not indexing?

The decision for Amazon to index your product for a keyword comes down to many factors – if you are breaking any of Amazons keyword rules then you most likely won’t index. You can find these rules here

Secondly, and equally important, is relevance. Amazon uses a machine learning model to check relevance. See our example above. This is a foot care product indexing for relevant terms bunion corrector, however, when we check the index for an irrelevant term batman, no index is found.


In summary, for effective advertising campaigns, your listing must be well optimised and indexed for any and all keywords that you wish to deliver on. Without this vital check, your campaigns will be ineffective.

Best Kept Secret

I mentioned above that if you aren’t indexed then you will never be able to advertise for that search term. Now, using the information about indexing we’ve learnt, we can see that there are actually two different index dictionaries. Two opportunities to index with very different features and benefits.

So what if you are only indexed for Field ASIN?

This is a possibility. Even if you don’t target a particular search term within your listing, in some cases Amazon may still pick you up for the Field ASIN index and allow advertising.

How can this benefit us?

Well we don’t want to rely on Amazon to arbitrarily pick up a keyword to index for advertising. We have no idea when or if it will happen and have no control over which terms will be indexed.  But we CAN run this same process for your competitors. Where we see a competitor indexed only to the advertising dictionary, we can target this keyword in your listing and take the competitive edge as the competition have clearly missed an opportunity.

End of Part 1: Our next blog will focus on PPC and how that can increase your page rank.

If you want us to help us with this process please visit our homepage