5 Reasons Why Your Amazon PPC Campaigns Aren’t Getting Impressions

Are you launching Amazon PPC campaigns but still not seeing impressions? 


Don’t worry!


We’ve got the top 5 reasons why your ads aren’t getting the attention they deserve and how you can fix it TODAY. 


Here’s what we’ll cover…



Let’s jump in so you can start getting more eyeballs on your ads.

Why Do Impressions Matter?

First of all, what is an impression?

In other words, 10,000 impressions mean that Amazon has shown your ad to 10,000 people. 


Side note: Impressions are not the same as “clicks”. Impressions only measure when your ad is viewed not clicked. 


So, why are impressions important?


Well…without impressions you’re never going to get sales from your ads. 


Think about it, if no one sees your ad or your product how are they going to know it exists so they can buy it?


Impressions are at the top of the marketing funnel. A super simplified version of the buyer journey on Amazon might look something like this.

As you can see, if you’re not getting impressions then you’re not going to get sales. 


However, that doesn’t mean that your only goal should be to increase impressions. Sales and profit are still probably your main goals. But if you don’t have enough impressions, you’re not going to be able to support your other sales goals.


Alright, now that you understand a bit more about what impressions are measuring and why they matter, let’s talk about the 5 reasons why your campaigns might not be getting enough impressions.

Reason #1: You haven't Identified Relevant Keywords

As you probably know by now, it’s impossible to predict what customer search terms are going to convert for your product. Unless you’re some kind of mystical mind reader, there’s really no way to know exactly what your customers are going to be searching for. 


But that doesn’t mean that you don’t need to do market research to make sure you really understand your audience.


If you don’t understand your audience then you won’t be able to choose relevant keywords for your campaigns and you’ll be missing the mark.  


How to Fix It

Get to know your audience!


Ask yourself questions like: Who are my ideal customers? What do they want? What do they need? What drives them? What are their interests?


Once you have an understanding of your target audience, you can begin to tailor your PPC campaigns to their interests.


Keep in mind that there might be multiple audiences for your product that you could potentially include in your keywords.


For example, this seller has identified both a hunting and boating audience for these binoculars and so added those respective keywords to their listing.

If you really want to get fancy, you could even use demographic data to further refine your keyword targets. This data can be collected through surveys, market research, and Google Analytics.

Reason #2: You’re Bidding on Irrelevant Keywords

If you are bidding on keywords that don’t actually fit your product, then it makes sense that you’re not seeing impressions. 


For example, if you’re selling those binoculars but you’re bidding on keywords related to “microscope” then you’re targeting the wrong audience.


Now, that might be pretty clear when it comes to conversions or even clicks but how is keyword relevancy related to impressions?


Well, Amazon’s algorithm is a bit of a black box but we do know that they only want to show your ad where it’s most relevant and therefore most likely to result in a sale. 


So, even if you’re bidding a ton on the word “microscope” it’s very likely that Amazon is not going to show your ad because it’s simply not relevant to that keyword.


How to Fix it

If your campaign isn’t getting impressions it’s going to be worth your time to do a deep dive into your keywords. 


First, go through your keywords using your best judgment to see whether or not you think the term is relevant. If it’s not, then either archive or pause that term so that you don’t keep spending on it. 


Next, you’re going to need to find some better keywords. To do that, we recommend doing at least basic keyword research using some free tools. 


Finally, in order to really start maximizing impressions (and profits) you’ll want to do some search term farming


That article above is worth checking out to learn about our farming process in detail. In a nutshell, search term farming is our proven process that allows you to find out the search terms that are the most likely to convert for your specific product. 


Essentially the process involves putting a list of vetted keywords into broad campaigns for a certain period of time (2-3 weeks usually). 


Then, we look at the data from those campaigns to identify high-performing search terms which we move into exact campaigns so that we can make sure those bids are as efficient as possible 


Alright, so you know your audience and have added relevant keywords to your campaigns but you’re still not getting impressions. What’s the deal?


It could be reason #3….

Reason #3: You’re Not Actually Indexed

for Your Top Keywords

Being “indexed” for a keyword means that it appears somewhere in your listing or in your backend product description. If it doesn’t, then your product isn’t going to show up when customers search that term.


In other words, adding your top keywords to your ad campaign is not enough. You need to make sure that you’ve included them somewhere in your product listing (title, bullet points, product description, or backend). 


Your top keywords are going to be the ones that you’ve identified as being the most relevant to your product. In our binocular example, one of your top keywords is probably going to be “binoculars” however you should also work to identify keyword phrases (aka long-tail keywords) like “large view binoculars” or “waterproof binoculars for bird watching”. 


How to Fix It

There are a few ways to go about fixing this problem…


  1. Check Your Listings

Simply look at your listing to see if your top keywords appear and if not then add those in. 


  1. Use the Amazon Search Bar

If you’re not sure whether or not you’re indexed for a specific keyword you can plug in your keyword plus your ASIN into the Amazon search bar to see if your product comes up. 


So, for the binoculars that would be: large view binoculars B00AMPJGMG


There are also some paid tools to consider. Helium 10 offers a tool called “index checker” to help with this specific issue. It’s available by paid subscription but if you need to do this for lots of products it might be worth considering. 


  1. Consider a Paid Tool

Finally, if you’ve added your keyword(s) to your listing but you’re still not getting indexed you can try moving it around. I.e. If it doesn’t index in the title, then move it into the backend, bullets, or description.


Maybe you’ve implemented all of the solutions above but you’re still not getting impressions. 


Well, it could be due to this next reason…

Reason #4: You’re Bidding on Keywords

That Have No Traffic

Figuring out the most relevant keywords is really important, however if no one is actually searching for those keywords then there aren’t going to be any impressions for you to get. 


How can you tell if your keyword has traffic? Head over to the Brand Analytics search term tool in Seller Central. 

Then you can enter your keyword and select your time period.

This allows you to analyze the term based on the Search Frequency Rank (SFR). 


A quick digression about Search Frequency Rank (SFR)…

If the search frequency rank is way up in the millions then that tells you that there just isn’t that much traffic for your keyword during that time period. 


If your SFR is in the hundreds then that means there is a good amount of traffic for that keyword during that period. 


Just remember that it’s going to change over time and particularly for seasonal keywords. 


For example, look at the keyword “Christmas gift” in December vs. July. 

Quite the difference. 


Alright, back to our topic. 


How to Fix It

So, what you’ll want to do is check on the SFR for your target keywords during a relevant time period. If it turns out that there is little to no traffic on that keyword then you should consider removing that term from your campaign. 


This won’t help increase your impressions but it will allow you to spend your time and money elsewhere. 


Finally, once you’ve checked that all of the above is in good shape and you’re still not getting impressions], there is one more reason that might explain the issue. 

Reason #5: You’re Not Bidding Enough

Remember, at its core Amazon PPC is an auction.


In order to win the bidding war, your bid needs to be competitive. If your bid is too low, your ad may not be shown as frequently as others with higher bids.


One easy way to tell whether or not your bid is competitive is to compare it with Amazon’s suggested bids. 


If your bid is significantly lower than the suggested bid then it could indicate that your bid is too low to compete with what other sellers are bidding during that time period. 

In the above example, you can see that the bids are quite a lot lower than the suggested bids and therefore the impressions are also very low. 


How does Amazon come up with these suggested bids?


Here is how they put it…


“Suggested bid and bid range are calculated from a group of winning bids for ads that are similar to yours. You can choose to use the suggested bid, or any bid in or outside of the bid range.”


Amazon gives the full details on suggested bids and bid range here.


So, how can you test out this theory?


How to Fix It

You’ll want to run an experiment on your top target keywords. 


Step 1: Try adjusting your bids to be more in line with Amazon’s suggested bid. 


Step 2: Keep an eye on it over the next couple of days to see if your impressions increase. 


If they do, then you’ll know that you likely weren’t bidding enough before. 


If you’re still not getting impressions then you’ll want to go back and check on the reasons mentioned above to further troubleshoot your product. 


What do you do when your Amazon ads aren’t getting impressions?

Did anything in this article spark your curiosity or bring up a question? Comment below or email us at [email protected] We love talking about PPC!

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