Velocity Sellers, Inc

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February 24, 2022

Defend your Amazon branded keywords by creating a diverse ad portfolio that outperforms your competitors’.

Sellers and vendors must consider how they can increase the visibility of their products on Amazon due to the ever-increasing number of products available and the resulting fierce competition. 

The topic of whether branded keywords have an impact on organic sales is a complex one. Branded keywords are those that include a brand name, such as “Nike Sneaker.” “Running shoes” is a non-branded term. If a brand-loyal customer is looking for a product from his favorite brand, it’s logical to suppose that he’ll buy it even if the product isn’t advertised. 

The key reason for this is brand loyalty and the desire to purchase a product that matches the search query. Competitor commercials, i.e. ads from competing brands, would have a poor chance of success in this situation, based on customer loyalty.

To easily navigate to the different sections of the guide, use the links below. 

What are Branded Keywords?

Search phrases that are specific to your brand, sub-brands, or SKUs are known as branded keywords.  While Amazon recognizes your brand name and SKUs and should, in theory, show your organic listings or advertisements over rival listings or advertising when someone types your branded keywords, this is not always the case.

Amazon’s A9 algorithm prioritizes search results based on a variety of factors such as relevance, bids, and sales history, among others. Close competitors that bid high on your branded terms may have a share of voice, especially if they have previously demonstrated to convert some of your traffic into product sales. Because of this data, Amazon considers competitor offers to be relevant to your brand and branded terms. Their auto and broad match algorithms work against you by using your competitors’ associations.

I expected to see Coca-Cola right at the top of the search results when I put “Coke” into the search bar. Guess who owns those Amazon listings? Red Bull is the brand. It can suffice for those who don’t have a strong preference between the colas. Red Bull has done an excellent job of bidding extensively on the keyword “coke” in order to gain visibility.

Why do you need a brand defense strategy?

Defensive strategy is a marketing technique that helps organizations keep important customers who could otherwise be lost to competitors. Competitors are companies that operate in the same market category as you or sell similar products to the same demographic. To preserve a competitive advantage and a good reputation among other brands, each company must safeguard its brand, growth aspirations, and profitability when there is competition. Firms want to keep their competitors out of the sector to minimize the danger of financial loss. 

It’s critical to use Amazon Advertising to defend your brand. Sponsored adverts appear at the top of search results on both mobile and desktop. That implies that if someone searches Amazon for your brand name, they will either find you or your greatest competitors who are attempting to target your brand name and steal sales.

List wisely: A Comprehensive Guide to Perfect Amazon Product Listing Optimization

How much to spend on branded keywords vs. category keywords?

You want to develop a Perpetua strategy for creating a branded campaign with a certain budget and ACOS target. The reason you should do this instead of mixing it in with your flagship category advertisements is that if you set a goal of, say, 10% ACOS for your branded terms, your conversion rate should be extremely high when someone is already looking for your brand. However, you may set a target of 30% ACOS for category-type keywords related to your product.

Some of this will require extensive testing. Setting up branded ads gives you the ability to play defense and defend your brand while not overspending on your own branded terms because conversion rates are really high.

Why Should You Bid on Your Own Branded Keywords?

Sellers who are against bidding on their branded keywords could make the following arguments:

  • “If someone searches for my brand name, they are already interested in purchasing.” They’ll notice my organic listing regardless. “Why should I pay Amazon for advertising?” you might wonder.
  • “I don’t mind not spending money on my name because I’m not a mega-brand.”
  • “I’d spend my money on other keywords.”

While all of these arguments appear to be reasonable and valid, Amazon’s algorithmic decisions and layouts force us to pay to participate. Even for our own brand name, we can’t rely on organic ranking alone. Someone else will pay to take all of the slots on page one that clients expect to see us in if we don’t.

The Everything Store, Amazon, is predicated on a massive assortment and variety of products. It’s a maze of distractions, with a never-ending supply of cheaper, better options pushed to buyers at every turn. Even after items have been placed to the cart, baits like “Similar Products,” “Lower Priced Items to Consider,” and “Sponsored Brands Similar to this Brand” appear.

Shorter buying cycles become even more critical for brand protection as a result of this. You want to close the transaction as soon as possible, especially if the customer came specifically looking for one of your products. Make things simple for them. Distract yourself as much as possible.

While not advertising on branded keywords may save you money in the short run, keep in mind that there is always competition and distraction. If you don’t defend your territory, an eager opponent will rapidly fill it.

Play offense to capture competitor traffic

Bidding on competitor trademarks and brand names is a potent instrument when it comes to cutting into a competitor’s market share. Appearing near a competitor’s goods gives the consumer another alternative and a chance to win over an otherwise loyal competitor’s customer.

There are no limitations or consequences to utilizing this strategy in terms of quality score (another difference between Google and Amazon). Furthermore, because the buyer has stated his or her intent using a brand or trademark search word, conversion rates may be lower.

  • Consider these strategies for using Amazon ads to your advantage. 
  • When running manual ads, you can create and target brand keywords to appear above your competition on the search results page.
  • In the manual campaign, which was released in 2019, you can now use product targeting to pick and choose which goods you want to be presented alongside.
  • In an automatic campaign, you can utilize the “Substitute” match to target similar goods and categories. Amazon then lists your product in the “Sponsored Products relevant to this item” carousel on a competitor’s similar product detail page.

Play defense to protect your product pages

You can use similar strategies to defend your brand against Amazon competitors who are on the offensive.

  • Target your own items and categories when conducting both automatic and manual campaigns to ensure that more of your products appear on the product page under “This item has Sponsored Products relevant to it.” This allows you to separate your product pages from the competitors, preventing clients from second-guessing their purchases before adding them to their cart. You’ll keep the consumer even if another of your products appeals to them.
  • Use search query data to see where generic, non-brand, and non-trademark queries are yielding the best results. This is crucial for maintaining market share. To target these lucrative terms and products, you’ll want to employ comparable strategies.
  • Conversely, to ensure that your products show at the top of the search results page, target your brand and trademark searches. Use search query data to figure out which brands are the most important to your company.

Smart marketing: How to Market Amazon Products Effectively for Success

Top Strategies to Keep Buyers Close 

What are the various methods that smart sellers use advertising to safeguard their brand? They employ a number of offensive and defensive strategies that you can employ as well. These will not only help you guard your location, but they will also assist you in stealing sales from competitors who aren’t paying attention. Bid on phrases that are specific to your brand: You’re still in the game if you bid low. Monitor your share of voice, or how frequently you rank on page compared to your competition.

1. Bid on your SKUs as keywords

Some consumers look for things based on their SKU. If they do, your ad targeting it will ensure that they get at the correct location faster.

2. Bid on Brand Names and Competitor SKUs 

Find out what SKUs your competitors are selling and place a bid on them. The same may be said about their brand names.

3. Use Custom Images with Sponsored Brands Ads 

Running these will provide you visibility on the bottom of product detail pages in the “Sponsored Brands Related to Your Search” bars.

4. For Your Own Products, Run Sponsored Products Product Targeting Ads

Use your own brand to take up the most space on the detail page.

5. For Your Own Products, Run Sponsored Display Product Targeting Ads

Running Sponsored Products Product Targeting advertisements is similar, but with far better placements closer to the Buy Box and the bullet points.

6. On Competing Products, Run Product Targeting Ads

To steal traffic from pre-qualified audiences, go on the offensive.

7. Run Sponsored Display Audience

These are remarketing adverts that will bring back customers who have previously interacted with your products. Bringing them back is low-hanging fruit because they are already familiar with your brand name, making it much easier to win.

8. Target Relevant Categories

Running Category Targeting advertisements will help you obtain awareness in similar or related categories to your own. This sort of advertisement is similar to running a car campaign, but for products.


Running more advertisements, but smarter ads can actually increase your profit margins. The most successful Amazon advertisers have a well-diversified ad portfolio, which allows them to play both defensive and offensive roles at multiple levels with relatively small investments. Many of these ad types can be developed with modest bids and budgets to serve as placeholders for Amazon’s ad machinery, which could cost you more than the cost of defending the brand you worked so hard to build if it isn’t available.

Ready to learn more about diversifying your ad portfolio and protecting your brand?  Click here to book a call. 

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Amazon Managed Services

With over $1B in revenue driven and 60+ employees with specialized knowledge of the Amazon ecosystem, we are the experts in this space.

Peter Sims

Sales Executive & Brand Evangelist

Pete has been on Amazon for 3 years now and is very happy to found a home at Velocity Sellers. In his free time Pete is an avid hiker, runner, and bowler. He also enjoys reading any book he can get his hands on and making some tea to go along with it.

Arlind Hoxha

Creative Manager

As the Creative Manager at Velocity Sellers, Arlind leads with expertise honed over many years in creative agencies. He brings a wealth of experience guiding designers and excelling in ecommerce-focused endeavors. Beyond his professional prowess, Arlind is an avid gamer, seamlessly blending creativity and strategic thinking.

Florence Palahang

Administrative Manager

Holding a BS in Accountancy from Davao City and boasting seven years of experience as a Virtual Assistant, Florence has established herself as a valuable asset. With a background spanning 95 clients worldwide, she has found her niche at Velocity Sellers, focusing on Amazon marketplaces. Beyond work, Florence enjoys reading, crochet, and baking. Her collection of plants adds vibrancy to her mornings, and witnessing her family enjoy the outcomes of her efforts brings contentment to her universe.

Kiley Forche


An MBA graduate specializing in Finance, boasting 11+ years of expertise. Joined Velocity Seller in 2018, contributing to our growth. Outside work, treasures family time, exploring new destinations, and passionately supports Buckeye Football

Miljan Milev

Sr. Project Manager

Seasoned project manager adept in data and e-commerce projects, collaborating globally. Outside work, finds joy in traveling, cherishing moments with family and friends.

Camilla Messmer

Sr. Project Manager

University of Arkansas grad in Supply Chain Management, excelling in eCommerce project management. Enjoys baking, travel, and writing, adding a touch of creativity to every endeavor.

Zach Taylor

Director of Logistics

Zach, a graduate with a Sociology and Environmental Science degree from the University of Montana, has consistently found himself drawn to running businesses and improving business systems, logistics, and operations throughout his professional journey. In his free time, he enjoys cycling, running, and spending quality moments in the mountains with his family.

Chris Prall

Director of Advertising

A former chef turned Geomatics graduate. While studying, he delved into managing PPC campaigns for Amazon agencies and e-commerce clients, uncovering a passion for data-driven strategies. A maestro in crafting successful PPC campaigns, he’s fueled by driving client growth, from startups to 8-figure brands. Beyond work, Chris savors cooking, vinyl collecting, camping, and embracing the great outdoors

Steffanie Morrison

Director of Sales, Sr Marketplace Analyst

Steffanie brings a rich e-commerce background since 2013, selling products and advising brands. An analytical mind with degrees from Northern Illinois University and the University of Hartford, she resides in New Hampshire, relishing family moments, travel, and outdoor adventures like hiking and skiing with her husband and kids.

Eric Peterson

Director of Brand Onboarding

Master’s in marketing, film degree from Minnesota State University-Moorhead. At Velocity Sellers, he crafts brand value, excels in client service, and loves problem-solving. An advocate for animal welfare, he enjoys cooking, classic movies, and time with his dogs.

James Dee

Director of Brand Management

Over 20 years in e-commerce mastery, specializing in Amazon. Proven brand builder and business owner. Outside the office, a proud parent to five, including a Division 1 soccer player. Enjoys family time, the outdoors, and all things soccer.

Lisa Zajdel

Executive Director

Results-Driven Executive Director. With two decades of expertise in merchandising and retail, including a successful tenure as Kohl’s Private Label Buyer & E-commerce Manager, Lisa brings over 14 years of invaluable experience on Amazon. Her dedication to delivering results is unparalleled, ensuring a strategic, seasoned approach to optimizing your business for success.

Andrew Warner


Andrew Warner, Velocity Sellers’ CFO, occupies a central role in our financial triumph. His sharp fiscal oversight guarantees our operational efficiency, ultimately empowering our team to deliver unparalleled services to a global clientele, consistently setting high standards in the industry.

Jake Schwarzbaum​


As the Co-Founder and CEO of Velocity Sellers, Jake Schwarzbaum co-launched the company while supporting his father, Nathan, during leukemia treatments. His dedication to helping brands succeed on Amazon, without relying on automated systems, drives Velocity Sellers’ commitment to excellence.


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