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Ultimate Guide To the NEW Amazon Opportunity Explorer

The new Amazon Opportunity Explorer has officially been released, creating new ways to gather valuable selling data about your product niche!

In the last couple of years, Amazon has done a great job of getting more analytics and features available to Amazon sellers. 

One of my favorite additions has been the Brand Analytics metrics available to Brand Registered sellers which gives insights into which keywords are searched the most day by day, and which products are the most clicked from those searches. It also has great demographic data. 

There have been several new reports and features recently launched in Amazon Advertising that can give you more insight into your PPC campaigns. We talked about some of these last week with Vince Montero on the podcast. 

A few weeks ago, Amazon rolled out a new feature to some sellers in beta called the Amazon Opportunity Explorer. How does it work? How can it help Amazon sellers?  Let’s take a deep dive together into it!

Overview

If you are an Amazon seller, click here to see if you have access to it. If not, send a message to seller central support to see when you could get it. 

This is how the main page currently appears:

At the time of publishing this article, I had options for the USA and Germany.  There are also some suggested “niches” that you can start going down a rabbit trail on, however, I wouldn’t suggest using those as most of them are branded (transformers toys, lego, monopoly, etc.), or just too generic (games, chess set). 

One of the main functions on this page you might miss? 

The “Browse and Filter” button. 

Helium 10 users might consider this a “Black Box”- Lite tool. While it’s extremely limited in comparison to Black Box, you might get some interesting data here. 

One thing to keep in mind is that this entire Amazon Opportunity Explorer tool is based on product “niches.”  Their definition of that is as follows:

A niche is a collection of customer search terms and products representing a customer need. Customers demonstrate their purchase needs when they enter search terms on the store. Amazon combines these search terms into clusters based on the products that customers view or purchase. Search terms and products can meet more than one customer need, and can be in multiple niches.

This is very important to know, and as you’ll see later, has some significant differences compared to how you normally might look for product opportunity. But in a nutshell, it means you aren’t necessarily looking for products or specific keywords, but rather clusters of products that are powered by clusters of keywords. 

Filtering by Search Volume

In this Browse and Filter section, you can see different ways to find these niches in the Amazon Opportunity Explorer. 

You may filter by search volume for the last 90 days or the last 360 days. You also can filter by percentage change during those time frames.

Good news for Helium 10 users! If you are familiar with using Helium 10 Cerebro or Magnet, then you are probably used to the functionality of filtering for search volume and search volume change, or trends. 

However, here is where being spoiled by Helium 10 data could get you a little confused on Amazon Opportunity Explorer. The search volume we display in Black Box, Magnet, and Cerebro is at the keyword level. For example, above, we say that the estimated monthly search volume for Coffin Shelf is 14,212.

However, when you are using the Opportunity Explorer to filter, you need to keep in mind that their search volume filters are all based on the aforementioned “niches” that Amazon has generated. The search volume there is the aggregated number of all search volume for all of the keywords that they have related to that niche

So, when you use that filter in Opportunity Explorer, keep in mind that it is referring to the total search volume for anywhere from 10-20 keywords or so. (More on search volume later)

Now, one thing that, at this time, Helium 10 does not provide are sales generated by keywords. In this filter, you will see a “units sold” filter. 

This is something I have already seen some people confused about. It is not telling you the total units sold by the keyword. Nor is it telling you the total units sold by the products that are in this niche. What this is referring to are the sales generated from searches of keywords in the niche. More on this later….

Filtering by Niche Size

The next filter is “Total Number Of Products.”  Again, be very careful not to be confused by this. In Helium 10, you might be used to filters that can show all products containing a specific keyword in them, or all products ranking in a certain range in the results for a certain keyword. This is neither of those.

This refers to the number of products that Amazon has identified with their criteria, as being part of their niche. I would not advise using this datapoint until Amazon tightens it up a little. 

For example, the “collagen powder” niche we all know is one of the most saturated out there with hundreds of competitors. However, for some reason, in Amazon Opportunity Explorer, it says there are only 18 products in this niche. 

Meanwhile, the niche of “demon slayer phone case” somehow has 175 products.

While looking for product opportunities, this might not be the best place to start just yet. 

Even after backtracking to find certain metrics myself, I simply couldn’t find the opportunities I wanted. So, if you were starting from zero, it would be even more difficult to find new opportunities.  

You’ve Found Your Niche, Now What?

Where I find more value in this tool is actually inside some of the metrics once you find the niche. 

If you type in a keyword, the Opportunity Explorer displays the most closely related niches to that keyword. This is what shows up when you type in “coffin shelf.”

If they already have a niche for the keyword you enter, it will show up first as you can see here. 

(Niches are always named by the most searched keyword in it) 

It depends on the entered keywords, but sometimes only the top niches that come up are very relevant to your entered keyword.

If you keep scrolling on this “matching niche for coffin shelf” result page, we see the niches: Puzzle rack, gold table decor, treasure x, and more. 

Let’s go over the columns you see above. 

  • Customer Need: The name of the Amazon Niche
  • Top Search Terms: The next 3 most searched keywords in the niche that Amazon selected
  • Search Volume : The total number of searches for all of the keywords in the niche that Amazon selected in the past 360 or 90 days. (usually around 15-20 keywords)
  • Search Volume Growth: The increase or decrease in search volume from the previous year, or previous 90 days
  • Units Sold : The number of units of products sold that came from searching the keywords that Amazon chose for this niche 
  • Total # of Products: The selected products that amazon identifies as being part of this niche
  • Average Price: The average price of the aforementioned products over the last 90 days 

As I mentioned earlier, I was confused about the “Units Sold” column. For example, it’s saying that in the last 90 days there were 500-750 units of the coffin shelf sold. This was strange to me since the Project X coffin shelf by itself had sold more in that timeframe. 

This is when I discovered that it is only referring to the units sold that have come from these search terms. I feel that in the future Amazon will update this since this might not be that useful to Amazon sellers.

When we examine demand for a product, we do it at the total keyword level, or the total product level. For example, if we use this metric of 500 sales, and then take the Project X Coffin shelf share of conversions for the keywords, it comes out to only about 40 units.  

So if you did not have the Helium 10 Chrome Extension, and were just basing it off of the Opportunity Explorer plus Brand Analytics, you might think that our coffin shelf has sold only 40 units or so, when in actuality it was almost 700.

As we talked about in the beginning, keep a close watch as Amazon improves the “number of products” metric. It only marked 17 coffin shelves, however, if you look on Amazon, or using Helium 10 Black Box, you will see that there are more than double that who have gotten sales in the last 30 days. 

In addition, of those 17 products, there were multiple ones that were not coffin shelves such as a bat shelf, a moon shelf, a furniture chair, a moon mirror, and others. 

Exploring the Tabs

Once you click into the Niche from the search result page, you have a page that gives you three tabs, the first being the “Products Tab.”

I like the metric of Click Count. This is something that you do not have in Brand Analytics. However, this could be a source of confusion again, so let me clarify what this click count refers to.

If you mouse over the “Click Count” in the column header, it seems like it is saying that this represents the total customer clicks from any search term.

However, I thought that this was a bit strange, since in PPC alone for this coffin shelf in 3 months we got 10,000 clicks, so if you add the organic clicks, it would be even more, so I wondered why it said we only had 4,000 clicks.

In digging into the documentation, I found that instead of being for “any search term” period, it actually refers to the “Total number of clicks on this product, after a customer sees the product as a result from any search term in this niche.”

So once again, just make sure you understand what it is referring to! It’s all the clicks for that product that comes from the 10-20 keywords that Amazon identifies as being part of this niche. 

The other metrics on this page are fairly standard: Average selling price, Total Reviews, Average customer rating, Average BSR, and more.  If for whatever reason you do not have access to the Opportunity Explorer yet, don’t forget that you can see all of this historical data by using the Helium 10 Chrome Extension. 

If you click on the Search Volume Tab, this is what comes up.

These are the 10-20 keywords that Amazon says are part of this niche, sorted by most to least search volume. The search volume is from the last 90 days.

It’s not an apples-to-apples comparison with the way we display search volume in Helium 10. Our algorithm is based on the previous way that Amazon showed search volume publicly which was showing weekly data based on what the estimated 30-day search volume would have been (if things continue as they were that week).  

I am not sure how Amazon is calculating these searches, or if it only applies to the products in this niche since the documentation is not clear. Even though many other metrics tie well to brand analytics, this one does not, which makes me think it’s possible that it’s only referring to searches that resulted in clicks to products in this niche. 

For example, above you can see that “gothic shelf” has slightly more searches over the last quarter than “coffin shelves.” However, if you look at the last quarter in brand analytics, “coffin shelves” actually shows that it has much more search volume than “gothic shelf,” since its Search Frequency Rank is a lot lower.

I have a ticket open to ask about this, so if there is clarification, I will update this blog.  

The Click Share column above is calculated by taking the number of clicks generated by the keyword, and divided by the total number of clicks generated by all of the keywords in this niche. For example, above, it says that out of all the clicks generated by those 14 keywords in the coffin shelf niche, that coffin shelf generated 63% of those clicks.  

The last column might be my FAVORITE feature in the Opportunity Explorer. It is called the “Search Conversion Rate.” 

This represents the “number of purchases, of any product in this niche, after a customer entered this search term and clicked on a product, divided by the total number of times customers entered this search term.”

Why I like this metric is that it tells you which keywords are not resulting in customers purchasing….in other words, there is obvious demand for this keyword, but customers do not seem to find what they are looking for, so they do not end up purchasing something.  

What does that mean? Product opportunity!

Getting the Most Out of the Opportunity Explorer

Look back at the above screenshot of the Search Conversion Rate. You will notice that three out of the four had a conversion rate of around 3%-4%. However, look at the one that only had a 0.80%: coffin bookshelf.

This makes total sense. If last week, you were to search “coffin bookshelf” on Amazon, you would NOT find even one. Everything that showed up were small coffin shelves you could never fit any books in.

Did you notice I specified if you had searched, “last week?”  Why is that? That is because THIS week, on Project X, we actually launched a coffin bookshelf!

A while back I had noticed “coffin bookshelf” getting some search volume in Helium 10. I didn’t have the Opportunity Explorer back then to tell me that the conversion rate was super low, however, in just looking on Amazon and seeing that books would not fit on any of the shelves, I figured it might be a fun mini project to do. 

When you are looking at different niches in the Amazon Opportunity Explorer, make sure to keep an eye out for keywords that have very low conversion into sales like this. It could indicate opportunity!

The last column on this tab is “Top 3 Clicked Products,” which represents the most clicked products in the last quarter, or 90 days for this search term. In checking, it seems to line up perfectly with what is shown in Brand Analytics for the previous quarter. 

The last tab in the Niche Details is called “Insights” and is made up of three sections that break down different metrics by Today, 90 days ago, and 360 days ago. 

The first section is Products, allowing us to get some nice data points here. For example, it shows you the % of products using PPC and the percentage that have Prime. If you find a niche where these numbers are fairly low, it could indicate opportunity. 

In addition, you get the very unique data point of the top 5 products click share and the top 20 products click share. As far as I know, Amazon has never displayed this before since, in brand analytics, you can only see the top 3 products click share. 

The next section for Brands gives data on how many brands are in this niche, the click share of brands, and the average brand age as well.  

These are all, as far as I know, completely new metrics that Amazon has never made public before!

The next section is probably still under construction as there is some strange data here. It says no new products have been launched in 180+ days in the coffin shelf niche, however, there have been at least 4 that I know of.   

It’s possible this is just tied to the issue of not yet having all of the products listed for the niche.  

Another interesting metric there is the number of successful launches. Amazon describes that as a product that currently is in the top 25% of sellers in your top-level category. 

The last thing that is shown is something else that I think is new, which is the “Average Product Listing Quality.” I am not sure if this is something new, or is related to the Listing Quality Dashboard in Seller Central. 

As Amazon sellers, we long for data and insights. If sellers were not interested in this, companies like Helium 10 wouldn’t even exist!   

It’s always great when platforms open up more data to sellers, and Amazon has done a great job with that the last few years. 

The Amazon Opportunity Explorer is another in the long line of new data points that Amazon has opened up lately, and just like with Brand Analytics and others, it’s something that I think all sellers who have access to it should look into.

Make sure to bookmark this page so that you can look back when you have questions on how to use it!

Bradley Sutton

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