Amazon PPC Audit: 10 Steps to Audit an Amazon Ads Account


When did you last give your Amazon PPC account a checkup?

Regular Amazon PPC audits are crucial to ensure the optimal performance of your ads and maximize the ROI from your advertising budget.

Think of it like a health check for your advertising strategy – it helps you find hidden opportunities, fine-tune performance, and stand out from the competition.

In this blog post, we’ll walk you through 15 essential steps to conduct a comprehensive audit of your Amazon PPC account.

1. Right Campaign Structure

Creating a well-organized campaign structure is crucial for making the most out of your Amazon PPC Campaign. It simplifies management and ensures your money is spent wisely. When evaluating your campaign setup, ask yourself:

  • Distinct Campaigns for Different Product Types or Categories:

Keep things clear by putting different product types or categories in their own PPC campaigns. This makes it easier to tweak targeting for each group.

  • Optimal Product Count in Each Ad Group:

Don’t overload ad groups with too many products. Having the right number ensures you can manage things effectively.

  • Optimal Keyword/target Count in Each Ad Group:

Don’t overload ad groups with too many keyword/product targets. Having the right number ensures you can manage things effectively hence helping in improving campaign performance.

  • Segregation of Different Match Types:

Divide keywords by match types into different campaigns or ad groups. This gives you better control over where your ads show up.

  • Clarity in Campaign Naming Conventions:

Can someone easily understand a campaign’s goal by reading its name? Clear and consistent names make managing multiple campaigns straightforward.

When your campaign structure meets these basic criteria, you’re on the right track. If not, starting with a proactive approach to a solid campaign structure sets the stage for more effective adjustments down the road.

Campaign Performance
Campaign Performance

2. Campaign-Type Utilization and Performance

Amazon offers various types of PPC campaign options, including Sponsored ProductsSponsored BrandsSponsored Display, Sponsored Brands Videos, and Sponsored Display Videos. Every campaign type serves a specific purpose in engaging shoppers at different stages of their buying journey.

Start by evaluating the performance of each campaign type based on conversion rate, click-through rate, ad spend, ad sales, and return on ad spend.

If you find that certain campaign types consistently drive positive results and you are not utilizing them for specific products, then there is an opportunity to launch new campaigns for such products.

On the other hand, if you find that certain campaign types are constantly not meeting the desired advertising goals, consider reducing spending on these underperforming ad types to reallocate the budget towards more effective campaigns.

3. Match Type Utilization and Performance

Similar to campaign types, Amazon offers various match types for targeting, including broad match, phrase match, exact match, product targeting, category targeting, audience targeting, etc.

Each match type is useful for different purposes. For example, Broad and Category matches help you constantly discover new keywords, Phrase, and Exact matches are used for maintaining sales velocity on important keywords, and remarketing is useful for engaging with shoppers who have already interacted with our ads.

Start by evaluating the performance of each match type based on conversion rate, click-through rate, ad spend, ad sales, and return on ad spend.

If you find that certain match types consistently drive positive results and you are not utilizing them for specific products, then there is an opportunity to launch new campaigns for such products.

On the other hand, if certain match types are not working at all, then consider reducing the spending on such targets and allocate it to a more effective targeting type.

Match Type Effectiveness

4. Wasted Ad Spend

Identify and compile a list of search terms and targets that are depleting your ad budget without delivering satisfactory results. This encompasses terms that generate minimal or no orders or exhibit an unusually high Advertising Cost of Sales.

Next, within your Discovery campaigns, which utilize auto, broad, phrase, and category targeting, add identified search terms as negatives to prevent wasted spend.

Conversely, in your efficiency campaigns utilizing ASIN and exact match keyword targeting, simply pause the targets that are contributing to wasted ad spend.

To make the process easier you can download the search term report from the advertising reports section and do a broad-level search term analysis to find out which search terms are to be added to the negative keyword list to prevent unnecessary ad spending.

5. Target Harvesting Opportunity

It’s a common strategy to harvest keywords that generate orders from one campaign and move them to other campaigns with varying match types.

Begin by pinpointing the search terms from the search term report that generated orders in the discovery campaigns but are not currently targeted in the efficiency campaigns using exact match or exact ASIN targeting.

Similarly, move those search terms to miss discovery match types such as broad and phrase to discover more related keywords.

Ready to get started with Adbrew?

Adbrew's Automation allows you to automatically identify high-performing search terms and seamlessly transition them from one ad group to another.

6. Bidding Strategy Performance

Amazon offers three bidding strategies: fixed bid, up and down, and down only. During an audit of an Amazon PPC account, identify the most effective ppc bidding strategy—whether it’s down-only, fixed bidding, or up and down.

We’ve observed that the down-only bidding strategy typically delivers better performance. If you discover campaigns using a strategy other than down-only, consider switching to down-only for optimal results.

Bidding Strategy

7. Placement Performance and Optimization

Amazon provides data for three distinct ad placements: top of search, product page, and rest of search. One placement may outperform another within the same campaign, or vice versa.

When conducting an Amazon PPC audit, focus on campaigns where you haven’t applied any placement modifier, but a specific placement is delivering good results. Consider adding a placement bid modifier in such campaigns. Conversely, reduce the placement modifier for a placement that isn’t performing well despite having a high modifier.

amazon ppc audit for placement modifier

8. Bids Optimization

It is recommended to optimize your target bids at least once a week. This is crucial because your performance can vary daily on the same target, influenced by changes in CPC and conversion rates.

Therefore, adjusting your bids based on performance data becomes essential.

During an audit, if you find a campaign where the bids haven’t been changed for a significant period, as verified from the ad group change history tab, it could signal a valuable opportunity to enhance the campaign’s performance.

Keyword Performance

9. Branded VS Non-Branded Terms Performance

It’s crucial to invest in branded keywords to connect with shoppers familiar with your brand. Simultaneously, it is also important to allocate a large portion of the ad budget for generic keywords to reach potential customers who aren’t yet aware of your brand. We often come across brands with either an excessive spend on branded keywords or none at all.

During a PPC audit, ensure that the brand allocates a significant portion of its ad budget to generic keywords while capitalizing on opportunities in branded searches.

Branded vs Generic Ads Performance

10. Share of Voice and Search Rank of Important Keywords

To sustain and enhance sales momentum for the brand, it is crucial to analyze market share and search rankings for key keywords that significantly contribute to ad-generated sales.

If you observe a brand experiencing a low search ranking or having a limited share of voice for a keyword that is already contributing significantly to sales, it signals a potential opportunity to expand its market presence. In such cases, it might be advantageous to implement a more assertive advertising strategy, particularly for those highly profitable keywords. This approach aims to enhance sales performance and maximize overall impact.

By adopting an aggressive advertising stance for these key terms, you position yourself to capture a larger market share and potentially outperform competitors.

Share of Voice

11. Optimize Product listings

Optimizing product listings is a pivotal aspect of a comprehensive Amazon PPC audit, playing a crucial role in driving more sales and revenue.

By incorporating relevant keywords into your listings, you not only improve visibility but also maximize the efficiency of your Amazon PPC campaigns, attracting a qualified audience.

Investing time in refining product titles, descriptions, A+ content, and images contributes to an improved user experience, translating clicks into more sales and ultimately boosting the overall performance of your Amazon PPC campaigns.

Ready to get started with Adbrew?

Adbrew's SOV tracker helps you monitor and understand your market share and search ranking for any keyword.

Final Thoughts on Amazon PPC Audit

Whether you’re a brand managing your account or an agency onboarding a new one, conducting an audit is crucial to grasp the brand’s current standing and identify growth opportunities. We hope the 10 points shared in this blog will serve as a helpful Amazon PPC audit guide.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why Conduct Amazon PPC audit?

Conducting an Amazon PPC audit is essential for optimizing your advertising strategy. By exploring the details of your PPC performance, you gain valuable insights into the effectiveness of your campaigns.

This process enables you to identify areas for improvement, refine your PPC strategy, and ultimately enhance your overall advertising performance on the platform.

How frequently should I conduct an Amazon PPC Audit?

Doing an intensive Amazon PPC Audit might require a significant amount of time and resources. It is recommended to perform it at the end of every Quarter when you are deciding your next quarter’s goals.

You can conduct a basic audit such as keyword analysis, target harvesting, bid optimization, and placement bid optimization every month to ensure everything is working properly.

What key items should be included in my Amazon PPC Audit checklist?

To conduct a quick Amazon PPC Audit, follow this checklist:

  • Distinct campaigns for various product types or categories
  • Optimal product and keyword counts in each ad group.
  • Switch to a down-only bidding strategy for improved results
  • Evaluate the top of the search, product page, and rest of the search campaign placements
  • Adopt an aggressive advertising approach for profitable keywords with low search rankings.
  • Conduct search term analysis to identify poorly converting search terms, add them as negative keywords, identify performing keywords, and check whether they are targeted in all three match types.
  • Have the right balance in budget allocation between generic vs branded terms.

Which Amazon PPC Audit tool is recommended?

Adbrew offers a comprehensive audit tool designed to conduct a thorough examination of your ad account. This tool not only ensures a complete sanity check but also identifies opportunities for optimization and growth, facilitating the scaling of your campaigns.

Grow your business on Amazon with Adbrew

Adbrew's Amazon PPC Optimisation Platform is being leveraged by 1000+ brands, sellers and agencies to optimise millions of ad-spend every month.

All Marketplaces Supported

24x7 Support

Expert Consultation