Amazon Ads...

Posting this here as a search reveals no discussion of this important topic… I just want to make a few points:

  1. I have found Amazon Ads to have a great ROI. My royalties average just over $6 per book, and the sales made directly via the ads cost me just under $2 per book, averaged across all ads since I started six months ago.

  2. The return on the ads has improved over time.

  3. Ads are only available on .com, and I sell my books in all stores. Before starting ads, my sales were 50% on .com and 50% rest of world. Now they are 80-20. The only reason I can find for this is the ads. The ratio change is not explained only by the direct sales when people click on the ads. Since I have had over two million impressions, I believe this has an effect over time, and people just think “I keep seeing this. Maybe I should buy it.”

  4. Improving the format of my book descriptions made sales jump a bit, and immediately. Since I did this for one book before the others, I am confident it was because of the format change. This involves inserting simple html-like tags into your text so that headings, bold and so on are visible.

  5. I followed the Sugarman ‘Ad Week Copywriting Handbook’ method to improve my book descriptions. If you have people click on your ad, but not buy, the description needs improvement. You could of course be using keywords that are not appropriate.

  6. I am currently at 1100 impressions per click, and 19 clicks per purchase.

  7. Sponsored Product ads with a manually-entered list of keywords are the ones that work best for me.

I write in a specific non-fiction area: customer experience. This is a low volume area, so I am perfectly happy with ads generating the volume they do. I can’t guarantee that my experience will work for everyone.

I would welcome learning from other people’s experience…

Maurice FitzGerald
Geneva, Switzerland

Currently experimenting with halving the rate at which I publish my newsletter and post articles on my blog. Not sure how long I will have to test for it to be meaningful. No change to book sales after two weeks.

Three weeks on from the first post. Now at 1054 impressions per click since the start of advertising, 13.7 clicks per book. Average ad cost per book sold is now $1.92. Average royalty a little over $6 per book, so a great ROI. And one of my books is now in the top 2.5% of all Kindle store sales, fiction and non-fiction combined. (My books are all business books.)

I looked at my history and find that I started advertising on August 31st last year. I started with Product Display ads, none of which produced sales. In all, I placed 14 Product Display ads over time. Zero sales.

Sponsored product ads work for me, and I have been using them since September 5th. I have run 27 of them in all, trying different things. I currently have 16 ads still live. Five of the 16 have never produced any sales, and I suppose I should stop them. However, they have not produced many impressions or clicks either, so have not cost much.