Category Archives: Uncovered

The Best Free Amazon Keyword and Product Research Tools

Alex Knight walks us through the best FREE research software Amazon sellers can use to help their sourcing and marketing efforts

Earlier this year, I did some research on the best free eBay selling tools to help me sell a rather gnarly collection of gnomes. This process made me realize just how useful free tools can be for online sellers and I was keen to provide our readers with an Amazon equivalent. So, I donned my deerstalker hat and began tracking down some useful free tools for Amazon sellers.

I focused my search on tools specifically made for sellers. This excludes software like CamelCamelCamel and Keepa. While they are undoubtedly useful pricing tracking tools, they are essentially shopper-focused. Instead, I’ve included tools that provide Amazon marketplace research data, whether that’s in the form of keywords people are searching for, sales estimates or pricing advice.

All the tools included in this article are free to use. By this, I don’t mean that they offer a free trial for a few days, and then make you spend your hard-earned bucks. These tools all have “free forever” versions where you can access the same features, day after day, without ever being asked to pay.

For each tool I’ve identified what it does, how it works and why you might want to use it. There is also a walkthrough video so you can see each tool in action.

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The Truth About Backend Keyword Search Indexing on Amazon

Is there really a hard limit on Amazon listing “backend” search terms? Anthony Lee has the definitive answer on limits and a lot more.

This post is by Anthony Lee, COO of SixLeaf (formerly ZonBlast), the first and largest product launch and ranking service for Amazon sellers.

If you sell on Amazon, particularly if you sell your own brands, you’ve undoubtedly been affected by the most recent change in the indexing of your listings’ search terms (commonly referred to as “hidden” or “backend” keywords).

Backend keywords are set in Seller Central, and don’t show visibly to buyers. In theory, they should lead to your product appearing in search results, just like the other words in your listing, such as those in the title and description (much more on that later).

However, there has been recent debate about how these terms are included in Amazon’s search index. How many are actually used when deciding whether your product is relevant to a customer’s search?

Anecdotes are rampant across forums and seller groups, telling tales of woe about decreasing listing views.The general consensus is that the number of search term characters that are indexed has decreased dramatically.

But there has been no official update from Amazon, or statements to explain how sellers should now optimize their keywords. Instead, there’s just a lot of the same ambiguous and inaccurate advice. To make matters worse, in typical Seller Central fashion, Amazon’s own support staff are giving out old information, or apparently just making it up as they go.

For this post, we’ve researched how Amazon really indexes backend keywords. I’ll put the record straight on a number of points, so you can make the best use of search keywords in your own listings.

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Amazon Account Suspensions from an Insider’s Point of View

Chris McCabe interviews former Amazon seller account manager Jesur Habek, giving us a rare look into the tensions between Amazon teams

This post is by Chris McCabe, a former Investigation Specialist for Amazon’s Seller Performance team and founder of ecommerceChris.com.

If you asked Amazon sellers what they fear the most, it would be having their account suspended. This is a rational fear, as suspensions are common and can come completely without warning – like a bolt from the blue.

We usually hear about suspensions from the seller’s point of view, but that only gives us a small part of the picture, based on the notoriously thin detail provided by Amazon. What do suspensions look like to an Amazon insider, with access to the teams who are actually responsible?

I worked for years on Amazon performance and policy enforcement teams, and this past month I spoke at length with fellow former Amazonian Jesur Habek. Jesur is a former Strategic Account Manager (SAM) in the consumables category at Amazon. The job of a Strategic Account Manager is to support sellers and help them grow their sales. Their interests are completely aligned to the sellers they work with, so they often need to take the position of an internal advocate for sellers’ interests at Amazon, and speak on their behalf to other teams.

Jesur told me about the the major pain points in his interactions with Seller Performance and Product Quality, and offered some advice to sellers on submitting their Plan of Action (POA) – the central document required when sellers appeal to Amazon for reinstatement.

I began the interview by asking Jesur about his experience defending sellers who have been wrongly suspended.

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The Truth About Amazon Search Ranking Services

Alex Knight investigates Amazon SEO services. Can they deliver on their promises, and should sellers feel safe using them?

Hello!

I am an Amazon SEO expert. We offer a very safe and amazingly quick strategy to rank products on Amazon.

I have a long and successful experience of SEO and can rank your product on the first page of results for a specific keyword.

All our work is 100% safe and you won’t be banned. We guarantee the first page or your money back.

Contact us now by email or Skype if you really want to increase your sales!
 

If you sell on Amazon, you are probably familiar with messages like this, professing to be from an “Amazon SEO expert” who can bump your product up to the first page of search results.

You are probably just as familiar with moving that email to your trash, and thinking no more about it. Just another phishing scam, right?

That’s what I thought too. But then I heard, from a reliable source, that these services can actually work. I was shocked, and more than a little skeptical, so decided to investigate further. Can these services really deliver on their promises? Or are they just trying to get access to your Amazon account? Will using them get you suspended?

Those are the questions I want to answer in this post.

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Dirty Tricks Pulled by Amazon Sellers… on Other Amazon Sellers

A growing number of unethical Amazon sellers are abusing the system to take down their competitors. Here’s how they do it.

We all know that Amazon is a competitive marketplace. The battle can be intense and sellers are constantly on the lookout for ways to boost their listings. When it comes to the Buy Box, this is usually through price, maintaining good performance metrics and using FBA.

But some sellers will take things a step further and try to shoot down their competitors using a range of dirty tricks. Their aim is simple – to get a competing seller or listing suspended.

This underhand behavior is rife on Amazon, and a variety of different tricks are being deployed. These range from leaving negative reviews on competing products to switching genuine items with counterfeits, then making inauthentic item claims to Amazon.

Massive disruption is caused for the “victim” sellers, who lose money while their account is suspended. They are left frustrated, having to write a Plan of Action to reinstate their account – for problems that don’t actually exist.

To raise awareness of these anti-competitive practices, we’ve found five of the most prominent dirty tricks being pulled by Amazon sellers on their competitors.

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