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The search algorithms modern search engines take numerous factors into account, but keywords form the basis when it comes to determining relevance for a specific search query. Amazon's A9 algorithm also works in this way: It matches the search terms of a search query with the search terms of the Product listings and returns products whose listings have a high match with the search terms. Relevant keywords can be placed in the title, in the bullet points or in the general search terms on Amazon. In this article, we will look at how you can optimize Amazon backend keywords and what rules you need to follow.

What are Amazon backend keywords?

The Amazon backend keywords, also known as General keywords or search terms, are not displayed in the listing, unlike the title and attributes of a product, but are stored in the backend. The keywords stored there are therefore not visible to potential customers. Just like the keywords in the title and bullet points, they are stored by Amazon's algorithm to match them with search queries. This is how the relevance of the product for certain search queries is evaluated.

The backend keywords can be found in the editing overview of a product under the tab Keywords in the field for General search terms can be entered. The order in which the search terms are entered has no influence on the algorithm's assessment of relevance. However, the input field is limited to 249 bytes.

What are backend keywords useful for?

Due to the fact that backend keywords are not publicly visible, this field is ideal for placing relevant keywords that should not necessarily be visible in the public listing. These include, for example common spelling variants of the product (e.g. wallet vs. purse). Strongly colloquial synonyms for a product are also often better placed in the backend.

In addition, the title and Bullet points should not be compulsively overloaded with keywords. The main focus should continue to be on the comprehensibility and information content of the texts for the prospective customer. As a result, it can happen that not all previously researched keywords can be meaningfully accommodated in the listings. In this case, too, the field for the Backend keywords usually enough space to accommodate the missing relevant keywords.

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What is the difference between backend keywords and platinum keywords?

In product editing, under the tab Keywords In addition to the field for the backend keywords, there is another field. This is reserved for so-called platinum keywords. However, these are only relevant for Amazon Platinum Sellers. Completing this field does not bring any advantages or improvements in ranking for "normal" marketplace sellers, as the platinum fields are not indexed.

For this reason, care should always be taken to ensure that the General search terms must actually be entered in the field provided for this purpose. If the backend keywords are inadvertently entered in the field for platinum keywords, they will be ignored and lost accordingly.

 

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Optimize Amazon backend keywords: What rules should you follow?

Those who Amazon backend keywords should follow a few rules. Some are useful in order to make the best possible use of the space for the general search terms, while others are essential in order not to risk violating Amazon's guidelines. The complete indexing of keywords is also related to this.

Length: As already mentioned, the field for the general keywords is set to 249 bytes limited. Amazon does not normally accept longer entries, but if the length of the stored keywords exceeds 249 bytes, none of the backend keywords entered will be taken into account for indexing. This can happen, for example, if Amazon subsequently limits the field further, as it has done in the past. To avoid losing relevant keywords, you should always keep up to date with changes of this kind and make appropriate adjustments if necessary.

Characters are not the same as bytes: An important addition to the topic of the length of backend keywords is that bytes are often confused with characters. While many characters correspond to exactly one byte, umlauts, for example, take up two bytes. When determining the length, a counter should therefore be used that counts not only characters but also bytes. You can find such a byte counter here.

Brand names: Neither third-party brands nor your own brand may be mentioned within the backend keywords. The ideal place for the brand name of a product is, according to Amazon Styleguides in the title anyway, preferably in the first position.

ASIN nomination: Just like brand names, ASINs are also not permitted in the backend keywords. Other article numbers such as EAN or UPC codes should also be avoided.

Punctuation marks: Punctuation marks are not necessary within the general search terms. The individual terms can simply be separated by a space. Additional punctuation marks only minimize the already limited space. The hyphen is an exception, but we will come to that later.

Sequence: The order of the search terms, as well as the distance between two terms, plays no role in indexing. For the search query "coat black", a product with the backend keywords "black coat" as well as "coat thick winter long black" is therefore classified as relevant. Considering different keyword sequences only leads to many repetitions and therefore to wasted space.

Repetitions: This leads us to the next point. The most important keywords from the listing are often repeated again in the backend keywords. However, this does not lead to an increase in relevance and only reduces the space for meaningful keywords. When optimizing general search terms, care should therefore always be taken to ensure that these terms do not already appear in the title or attributes. Repetitions within the backend keywords should also be avoided.

Filler words: Filler and stop words such as "with", "for", "that" or "and" are not taken into account during indexing and should therefore be omitted to save space.

Upper and lower case: Whether keywords are written in upper or lower case does not matter within the backend keywords. Amazon recommends writing all terms in lower case.

Spelling mistakes: Amazon automatically recognizes small spelling mistakes in the search query and instead displays relevant results for the search query that was probably meant. For this reason, it is not necessary to include spelling mistakes or typos in the general keywords. However, popular spelling variations can be included.

Singular & Plural: To cover a search term, it is sufficient to include the term in either its singular or plural form in the backend keywords. Including both has no effect on the relevance of a search query. The singular form is often more space-saving than the plural.

Observe the guidelines: In addition, there are some Amazon guidelines that should be strictly adhered to in order to avoid violations and thus the exclusion of search terms and further penalties. Obviously, offensive and offensive terms do not belong in the backend keywords. Likewise, no subjective terms are permitted, including terms such as "beautiful" or "cheap". Furthermore, time-limited terms such as "new" or "on offer" must be avoided.

Hyphen: Finally, here is a practical tip to accommodate as many relevant keywords as possible in the most space-saving way. To do this, terms that can be written both together and separately are inserted into the general search terms with a hyphen. For example, the term "rim brush" covers the keywords "rim brush", "Felgen Bürste", "Felgen" and "Bürste".

Examples for the optimization of Amazon backend keywords

The following table shows some examples of popular errors within the General search terms and a corrected version. The rules that have been disregarded are also listed.

Wrong Correct Rules
food for dog dog food dog food Filler words, repetitions, sequence
coat black, black coat, black jacket coat black jacket
Sequence, punctuation, repetitions
beautiful great jacket colorful inexpensive jacket colorful Subjective information
winter coat winter coat winter coat Hyphen
wallet purse wallet wallet prt wallet purse wallet wallet purse wallet Spelling mistakes
cup coffee mug coffee teacup tea coffee cup tea cup Upper and lower case, hyphen
headphones competitor brand1 competitorASIN1 bluetooth competitor brand2 bluetooth headphones bluetooth headphones Brand name, ASIN name, hyphen
travel bag special offer imitation leather brown travel bag imitation leather brown Time-limited terms
toys for cats cat cat toys toys set cat toy set Singular & plural, hyphen
rain jacket blue rain jacket waterproof rain jacket warm rain jacket blue waterproof warm Repetitions, sequence (or word spacing)

Amazon Backed Keywords Tools

Next, let's take a look at some tools that you can use to Backend keywords and optimize them. Let's start here with a Toolwhich Amazon provides us with, namely Amazon Brand Analytics.

Amazon Brand Analytics for backend keyword research

Amazon Brand Analytics is an analysis tool that is available to Amazon sellers with a registered brand. Amazon Brand Analytics can be used to analyze the popularity of search terms in selected time periods. We do not receive the search volume as a result, but the so-called search frequency rank, which reflects the popularity based on the search frequency. The more frequently a term is searched for, the lower the search frequency rank.

Brand analytics can be used both by Vendors as well as sellers with a brand registration. Use of the tool is free of charge.

Amazon backend keyword tool

In this example, we see that the Search term "Graphics card" was the most searched term in February 2022, followed by "Valentine's Day gift for him" with a SFR of 2 and Valentine's Day gift for her" with a SFR of 3.

If we enter a term in the search field, we will receive a series of other keywords that have a search term in this period. SFR have. It is important to understand that not all terms are covered - for the month of February 2022, the Amazon Brand Analytics database has a total of 335,989 keywords in the Database - We can recognize this by the number of lines displayed. For this reason, there are many keywords that, although they are regularly searched for on Amazon, are not displayed in Brand Analytics.

As an example, let's take a look at the Search terms for the keyword "electric fireplace" in February 2022.

Backend Keywords Tool

In this screenshot we can see that there are 11 Word combinations with the keyword "electric fireplace" that have an SFR for the period February 2022. These keywords are now an initial evaluation of possible terms that we can use as Amazon backend keywords. In addition, other synonyms such as fireplace, electric fireplace etc. should be used in order to achieve the broadest possible Coverage of all terms to reach.

 

Keywords AmazonConclusion: 

Amazon Brand Analytics is one of the most powerful tools for researching & optimizing the Amazon backend keywords. On the one hand, the data comes directly from Amazon and on the other hand, it can also be analyzed in certain time periods (weekly, monthly, quarterly).

 

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Amazon Product Opportunity Explorer

Let's move on to the second research tool for the Backend keywordswhich is also provided by Amazon - the Amazon Product Opportunity Explorer (POE). With the POE is actually a tool designed to help with the research of new product ideas. With the POE, Amazon gives sellers an insight into the search and purchasing behavior of Amazon customers - in contrast to Amazon Brand Analytics, we receive data on the actual search volume. The search volume is given on a 90- and 360-day basis.

We also receive information about the Growth in search volume, the number of units sold and the average price.

In the following example, we can see the search volume for terms containing the keyword "motorcycle helmet". The search term "motorcycle helmet" was searched for 23,690 times on Amazon in the last 90 days, which corresponds to a decrease of 39.5% compared to the previous quarter and 37.5% compared to the same quarter of the previous year. Backend Keywords Amazon Tool

 

In addition to the "Search terms" tab, the "Trends" tab offers further interesting insights into the current search volume.

Search volume keywords

It should be noted that the search volume is always displayed for 7 days and includes all terms in the "motorcycle helmet" niche - including terms such as "jethelm" "helm motorrad". However, this allows us to evaluate the current trends and the development of terms very well.

Conclusion: The POE is currently the only tool that provides reliable data on search volume and search volume trends. We therefore recommend using the POE for every evaluation of the Amazon backend keywords.

Ahrefs Amazon Keyword Tool

Next, let's move on to a tool that is offered by a third-party provider, in this case ahrefs. ahrefs is a Google seo tool that is particularly suitable for the Evaluation & Research of backlinks has become known.

The use of ahrefs is currently free of charge. The use of ahrefs is self-explanatory - first we select the respective country for which we want to evaluate the backend keywords, then we define the keyword to be analyzed and receive a selection of related search terms including an estimated search volume.

Keywords amazon

 

Conclusion: Ahrefs is a very helpful additional Source of information for search terms, as it is clearly more keywords than the Amazon Brand Analytics and the Amazon Product Opportunity Explorer. It should only be treated with a little caution when it comes to the specified search volume. 

Keyword tool

Another external keyword tool that we would like to introduce is keywordtool.io. keywordtool.io is based on the Auto-complete from Amazon and thus provides us with a detailed list of all related search terms for our source keyword. Keywordtool.io is very easy to use and does not require the creation of an account. First we select the Search engine and the target country for which we want to carry out the evaluation.

Keyword tool

 

Conclusion: Keywordtool.io can be used to extract a large number of long-tail keywords. Unfortunately, the search volume is not recommended at all, as this does not match the official Amazon data.

Sonar

Sonar is a further Amazon SEO tool. Sonar provides a database of keywords that are searched for on Amazon. Only Amazon is actually taken into account in order to optimize the Search behavior of the platform as accurately as possible. Sonar offers you the following four options for researching Amazon backend keywords.

Keyword: By entering a search term, we receive a list of "similar search terms". In practice, however, the output is more like Amazon Auto-Suggest, i.e. the keyword entered with popular additional search terms. The keyword list is sorted by search volume.

Expanded: 

With the option "Extended" we get synonyms and similar search terms. If you enter the search term "motorcycle helmet", you will receive suggestions such as "Vespa helmet" and "moped helmet". These are also sorted in descending order according to an estimate of the search volume.

ASIN:

The "ASIN" function gives us an insight into the search terms for which certain products appear in the first rankings. Search results page are placed. This makes it very quick and easy to analyze competitors' products in order to use their keywords as well.

To use the function, enter the ASIN of a product in the search field. Subsequently the list of positive keywords for the corresponding product appears, sorted by search volume.

Translate:

The Translate option can be used to generate keywords for other marketplaces and languages. Here we define the keyword, the marketplace and the language and receive a series of suggestions that can be used on the Foreign marketplace is intended. 

Conclusion: Currently, Sonar only displays a fraction of the possible terms in the free option (however, a CSV download gives us a larger number of keywords than those initially displayed). The "Advanced" & "ASIN" functions offer the main advantage over a tool such as Keywordtool.io.

Amazon backend keywords - Conclusion

The above rules and tips can be used to effectively optimize Amazon backend keywords in order to increase relevance for as many search queries as possible. The examples show in particular how many characters or bytes can be saved by a Optimization can be saved using the rules. In summary, the primary focus should be on the correct length of the Backend keywords and compliance with the guidelines of Amazon otherwise the indexing of the keywords is jeopardized. In the next step, it is worth applying the remaining rules to make the general search terms as efficient as possible and get the most out of the limited space.

NoteDo you need support with optimizing your backend keywords? Then we can help you as Amazon SEO Agency can help.

How many characters fit into the Amazon backend keywords?

Keywords with a total length of 249 bytes can be included in the Amazon backend keywords.

What are Amazon backend keywords?

Backend keywords or general keywords refer to a field in which keywords are entered. These keywords are not visible to customers.

Should comma characters be included in the backend keywords?

No! The use of commas reduces the space for the entered keywords.

Tobias Dziuba

My name is Tobias and I am the founder and managing director of the Amazon agency Adsmasters GmbH based in Düsseldorf.

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