I come from an internet marketing/SEO background, so you know what one of the first things I noticed was? There are lots of Amazon product pages that rank top 3 on Google for some really good volume keywords, they must be getting a crap load ton of traffic for that product listing.

If I can only rank it like that; I'd kill it. Plus it can't be that hard, right? I mean Amazon is like one of the biggest Google Trust Authority Juiced domains in the world, right? I can throw Fiverr spam links at it all day, every day and nothing will happen. Right? Here's what I found out through trials and tribulations.

 1. Let's Tackle The Gorilla First

I'm going to go ahead and tackle the big gorilla question in the room. Does this work? Have you ever ranked your Amazon product in Google SERPS by link building? Does it work? Yes. Only to a certain extent though. Have I ever successfully ranked one? Yes, top 5 but it's too roller coaster'ish for my taste. Let me explain further...

2. Easy To Rank With Amazon's Authority?

Like anything in SEO; it depends on the competition of the other ranking pages for that Google keyword. But relatively speaking; yes it's easier to rank an Amazon product page to Google than anything else. Does this mean you can nuke the Amazon product page with spam links you bought from Fiverr or Warrior forum? because you read on.... let's say Blackhatworld.. that it would work.

My results... they don't work that well. I don't know what kind of links they bought but I'm pretty savvy when it comes to SEO and not even my best efforts of Fiverr links worked. I mean they did, but not anything on Google's page 1. By efforts of pure Fiverr links alone, you could get to page 3 to 5... which is pretty much worthless. Let's say you were playing Jeopardy right.. and the category was Search Engines. You know what's smarter than a department full of hundreds of senior computer engineers that's perfected anti-spamming search engine algorithms for years and years that get paid $150k+, own some of the highest traded stock on the market, and get free unlimited lunch every day?

NOTHING. Nothing is smarter. It's not 2010 any more.. for that matter; it's not even 2013 anymore. Spam links, link wheels, "private" blog networks, etc. etc. etc. just don't work anymore.. I don't care how much authority the site has to deflect the "negative" effects of the links. Now.. with that said. I'm not saying you can't rank an Amazon product page to Google SERPs.. just not with spam links and within two weeks.

You need to approach it how any legitimate SEO/inbound/growth hacker would do it nowadays. Blow them away with great helpful content, referral from bloggers in the niche, make a helpful website or resource, etc. etc. Build genuine links.

 3. Ranked Products Don't Even Dominate The Niche

They simply act as a "gateway" product, people get there and start shopping and comparing the other products. And since seldom is the ranking product the best product available for that niche, it usually doesn't get bought. Don't believe me?

  1. Go search Google for 'selfie sticks'
  2. Click on #1
  3. What's it's Sales Rank? How many reviews does it have?
  4. Now go to Amazon.com and type in 'selfie sticks'
  5. Do you see it?
  6. Do you see the dozens of other selfie sticks killing it in sales?

Have an Oh Shit or AHA so far?

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4. Will Google Penalize My Amazon Product?

Is it possible? Yes, very. Have any of the products I tried to rank get hit with the Google axe? No. I can't really give you advice one way or the other on this; even if your product does get penalized.. not a big deal. Simply because what traffic are you really losing anyways if it never ranked? Plus, read onto #6. This will explain another factor in keeping your Google rankings even if you do happen to rank it up top 1-3.

5. Indexing? Where Does The URL Come From?

Google will crawl the category trees of Amazon and decide itself whether to index your Amazon product page or not. And.... you have no control over what URL structuring it will want.

  • http://www.amazon.com/Promaster-Selfie-Stick-Camera-Smart/dp/B00IEEN8TE
  • http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00IEEN8TE
  • http://www.amazon.com/What-ever-keywords-I-try-to-force-in-here/dp/B00IEEN8TE

You have to wait until you actually see that Google has indexed your product into their database, and then find what URL they are using. Use only that URL. You can't force your own URL into things; it will always default back to the version Google originally chose for whatever reason.

 6. It's Unpredictable - Up And Down

It moves up and down and in and out. If it's your private label product, you better never run out of inventory. Why? Because as soon as you do; it will go into "Currently Unavailable" mode and that means it gets dropped out of Amazon's searchable catalog.

Since that's how I think Google initially picks up the page, it will see that the product no longer "exists" or inventory is out and will drop it out the ranks (and from what I've seen often is drop it out of Google's index completely) quicker than a Patriot's defensive back. You'll notice the Amazon products that do rank #1-3 on Google are merchant fulfilled (which of course means it'll be in stock). If it is FBA; then you'll see there's at least 3+ sellers trying to win the Buy Box for it. Hence, it doesn't really go out of stock.

7. But Think About The Gainz Bro... The Gainz

With That Said, IF... big IF. You can accomplish:

  • Keeping the item always in stock and
  • Building legitimate links

I do think this is a winning strategy. Or will at least give you an edge in a hyper competitive niche. For me.. I'm a firm believer in the 80/20 rule. Meaning 20% of what you do brings 80% of your income. And I don't think it's worth my time and will never have as big of an impact as:

As always; I hope this gave you some AH HA moments and you can take some of this and turn it into actionable steps that make a huge impact on your Amazon business. If you think my post was valuable, imagine how valuable my apps like Feedbackz would be? Thanks for reading! Feel free to leave comments, I’ll chat back with every single one.

James fend
James Fend is the Founder of Helpify and Feedbackz. He also owns ecommerce companies with 6-figure yearly sales through Amazon and his online stores. He focuses on content & inbound marketing, SEO, and web design.