Not all SEO is created equal. Just as search engines differ, your SEO strategy should adjust to fit the platform you’re using. So what’s the difference between Amazon and Google SEO? And how can you make your keywords work smarter, not harder?

The SEO Process

Optimizing your content with strategic keywords helps boost visibility on your content. When establishing your process, it’s important to think about messaging first and relevant keywords second. Confusing copy won’t drive conversion, so keep relevancy and information top of mind as you begin. Once the foundation of your copy has been set, revisit with an intentional keyword approach. Gather a list of the highest converting and most relevant keywords to your product and feather into the content. If you approach content with a keyword-first mindset, copy can start to sound robotic, losing the voice behind the brand. 

When optimizing your content, it’s important to keep in mind what platform your content will be appearing on. Keywords on your brand site may differ from the keywords you’re using on Amazon. Here are the dos and don’ts of Google SEO vs. Amazon SEO:

Google SEO

There are a number of factors that go into Google SEO. Google verifies content by taking all external links, internal links, images and metadata into account. User’s searches on Google tend to be more broad and learning-based, with some people even using full sentences or questions. As a result, Google places a higher emphasis on long-tail keywords. But the contextual relevance of those long-tail keywords is also important.

Amazon SEO

Amazon determines search rank based on a variety of factors such as relevancy, detail page completeness, price, ratings, and more. Relevancy is heavily dependent on SEO strategy as keywords carry more weight on Amazon than they do on Google. Long-tail keywords can be useful in unique cases, however, utilizing category research and keyword insights to target short tail keywords is an essential step in the process. According to eMarketer, Nearly half (46.7%) of US internet users started product searches on Amazon compared with 34.6% who went to Google first. Amazon is no longer just a channel to buy everyday essentials, but also for research and discovery – consumers are using Amazon as their product search engine. Amazon places a stronger emphasis on each individual word rather than keyword phrases, as Amazon users tend to have more specific queries.

As you craft your keyword strategy, consider the indexing priority. First and foremost, prioritize your keyword placement in order of importance:

  1. Title: Most important keywords
  2. Bullets: 2nd-tier keywords
  3. Product description & back-end keywords: 3rd-tier keywords

Backend keywords are crucial for Amazon SEO. It’s important to adhere to Amazon’s backend keyword guidelines of character count and formatting to ensure your keywords are approved. If you do not comply with any one of these guidelines, your back-end data will be completely null. The keywords you use here can help increase your product rank, while still keeping your bullets and product description clear and concise to consumers. Use relevant keywords that your product may relate to on a broader level. Backend keywords can relate to usage, similar products, or other products that may complement your own.

Too Much of a Good Thing

A main similarity between Google and Amazon is that both discourage “keyword stuffing,” or overusing the same keyword/keyword phrase in an effort to boost your relevance. Amazon recommends that you keep your keyword density to about 2% (Total number of words/number of times keyword phrase appears = Keyword Density). It’s better to add some variety to your keywords than to just repeat the same highest-ranking keyword.

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