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Ranking Strategies for 2020: Amazon Product Launches on a Low Budget for the Long Run

How important are Amazon keywords to your product launch? Learn how Amazon sellers on a budget are maximizing their keyword ranking strategies for 2020.
8 minutes read

Why is everyone talking so much about keywords? Isn’t a profitable Amazon business supposed to revolve around a quality product? 

Well, yes… and no. You might create the best product in the world, with an innovative design, impressive photos, and a fabulous listing. However, if customers don’t see it, it’s not going to bring you any sales.

Bringing your product to the eyes of potential buyers is the key to having success on Amazon.

You will achieve this through a stellar ranking strategy – more on that later.

Key to success on amazon

Let’s go back to the moment before you even knew what your product would be. You have researched, rummaging, and ransacked through different niches until you said: This is it, let’s launch!

But how did you find that product? If you were inspired enough and got Helium 10 right from the beginning, then congrats, your job was definitely a lot easier. Black Box, Helium 10’s product research tool was a big help for sure. It helps you find products or keywords with strong potential by leveraging competitor listing data.

Remember the Project X Amazon Case Study? When Bradley and Tim did their product research, they did not search so much for products, but rather quality keywords. The “burrito blanket” comes to mind – really crazy numbers in such a small niche.

Your goal is to be in front of the most potential buyers as possible. To do this, you must find keywords that others have not. This is how you’ll get definite leverage as an Amazon FBA seller. 

Whenever I talk about keyword research and ranking, the one thing I always remember is something Kevin King said:

“Where is the best place to hide a dead body on Amazon? The answer is: on page 2.

So, let’s dive in and find the keywords to get your product to page one.


When you did your keyword research, you got a list of keywords using the Cerebro reverse ASIN tool, Magnet, or Brand Analytics. Some of them have high or medium high search volume and of course, you want your product to be on page one for all of those.

However, when strategizing your launch you see that for each of those keywords, you will need to give away hundreds of products using the Search-Find-Buy strategy, or spend a lot in PPC to get those ranked.

That means your budget is going to take a huge hit!

In 2020 it seems that Amazon puts a lot of weight on the grade of relevancy a keyword has, in regards to a particular listing.

This is why I recommend sellers to think outside the box and look at keyword research from a totally different perspective. The other way around. 

Start from the lowest volume keywords that are most relevant for your product.

  • First, do a reverse ASIN multi search in Cerebro for your most direct competitors. Use filters to try and find the keywords. If several of them are ranked for on page one, take note.
helium 10 cerebro
  • Make a list of 20-30  keywords which all meet the following conditions:
    • All are long tails
    • Are all composed from different words (as much as possible)
    • All are ranked high for as many competitors as possible (remember to also use Advanced Rank Filter to discover also “hidden gems” that only one or two competitors discovered so far)
  • Then make a separate list of another 20-30 keywords. Higher volume and all of them containing the same words or even 2-3 word phrases found in the first list you made.

Why am I Doing This?

Once the first keywords (the smaller ones) will get ranked, then all the bigger ones will also get ranked as a result of the common words contained in both. Be sure to use Helium 10’s Amazon keyword ranking tool to keep track of where you are ranking for each keyword!

Why is this an Advantage?

You will pay way less money if you start your ranking campaign with lower volume keywords than if you would start with a main or second main keyword composed only from 2 or 3 words. We are avoiding the high competition on page one that forces you to fight with all the big fish of the niche.

There are sellers doing 7 figures per month who use this kind of strategy and their products are not so well ranked on the main keywords. They only focus on the smaller ones – those that everyone leaves aside for later.

Our tests show that whenever people are searching for a broad search term, they are going back to refine the search and look for a specific long tail, then making the purchase there in 76% of the cases. Let’s take for example: “gifts for men.”

amazon product page

A variety of products, not related to each other, come up on this search. Some buyers may gravitate towards the whiskey stones, others to the phone docking station or the pen. They will go and search again for a specific keyword to see more options for that particular product they liked. Then buy! 

  • We have two lists of keywords. Now comes the third, which is my favorite. 
    • Get a photo of your product (or a competitor one), without any text or any details, Ask peoples’ opinion. Show it to friends, family, or anyone unfamiliar with your product. You can even run ads on Facebook for this, if your budget allows.
    • Ask for some feedback from the community of buyers where you’re planning on doing the Search-Find-Buy orders. They will get you some great keywords, some of which you may not have ever thought about as keywords.
    • Run a search for all of them in Amazon and check relevancy. Also, see how page one looks on that keyword. Now you have your third  list.
  • Put your three lists together and select 2-5 keywords that you are going to start your launch with. Prepare some PPC campaigns for the others, if you want to. Add them all to Keyword Tracker.
  • For the selected 2-5 keywords, start a Search-Find-Buy ranking campaign. Start slow, make it look as natural as possible, but be consistent. Make sure to have the campaign for at least 10 days and maintain a growing trend.

This tells Amazon, “Hey, this is a great product. People are increasingly interested in it. Let’s show this to more customers so they can buy it!”

After doing the campaign, you will see that you have ranked on many more keywords. You can continue with another campaign for another 2-5 batch of keywords or choose 1-2 from the higher volume ones and give those a boost. Remember to adjust your PPC campaigns accordingly.


  • On the same Cerebro multi search, try to find keywords that have less than 200 search volume, less than 300 competing products, and have at least two competitors ranked for them on page one.
reverse asin lookup
  • Analyze the Organic and Sponsored ranks. You will find keywords that show 0 search volume, but have sponsored rank. This means those are highly relevant keywords that are worth analyzing further.
amazon keyword research
  • The Johari Window Model will help us to choose the right keywords  
  • [OPEN] Organic rank -YES, Sponsored rank – YES – that’s a keyword worth looking into 
  • [HIDDEN] Organic rank -YES, Sponsored rank – NO – not interesting at this stage
  • [BLIND] Organic rank -NO, Sponsored rank – YES – that’s a keyword worth looking into
  • [UNKNOWN] Organic rank -NO, Sponsored rank – NO – not interesting at this stage

Of course, you can play a lot with the filters and find your own suitable combination, because everything is niche sensitive. Consider this as a starting point.

Other Tips

  • Do not use only one method for your launch, like only SFB or only PPC. Diversity of traffic is extremely important for Amazon. If you get your sales from searches and some of them are organic and some PPC, that would weigh a lot more than having them all from one source. Add some external traffic – influencers, Facebook or Google Ads, share buttons on the listing, Social media promo codes in your Deals tab. There is no need to go too aggressive on this, you just want the compounded effect from all these sources.
  • Track your keywords with Keyword Tracker and do a new reverse ASIN search once every couple of weeks. You will be surprised how many new keywords you will discover or how many uses for your product that you may have not thought about. Make sure to optimize your listing in that direction.
  • If your product has ranked well and got some traction, sales are coming in more and more. You should not stop everything and let them sell. Constant keyword research and ranking on more and more keywords will bring you more visibility.
  • Add phrase form keywords all over your listing – front and back end (Subject matter, Intended use and even more details tab).

After you reach page one, don’t close the computer and go to the beach! There’s a lot of work still to be done. One of the questions I get every day is: How do I make sure I will stay on page one once I get there. The answer is: double conversion. But more on this in the next episode!

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Alina Vlaic Alina Vlaic is an Amazon addict from Sibiu, Romania. She started her Amazon journey as a seller on the EU marketplaces and then crossed the ocean to the USA. Along the way, AZ Rank was born, a company dedicated to helping Amazon sellers on every stage of their business with customized ranking and launching services (& more). Reach out to Alina and the AZRank team to find out more about Amazon Ranking Strategies from A to Z.


2 responses to “Ranking Strategies for 2020: Amazon Product Launches on a Low Budget for the Long Run”

  1. This is gold for beginner sellers that aren’t looking to risk it all on their first product. Instead of ranking one super high completion high-risk high-reward keyword of 20k search volume you can do 40 keywords with 500 search volume and its more likely to rank and convert. absolutely genius!

  2. This is great information, Alina. I will be reading this a few times to grasp all the methods you have reviewed here.

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