Amazon PPC Automatic Campaign: Complete Guide

Rick Wong 28 November 2020

Amazon Pay-Per-Click (PPC) allows sellers, vendors, agencies, book vendors, and Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) authors to set ad campaigns in two ways: automatic and manual. In this article, we’ll discuss about Amazon PPC automatic campaign to help new Amazon PPC advertisers navigate this feature much easier.

What is Amazon PPC Automatic Campaign?

Amazon PPC automatic campaign can help you show your products in front of shoppers who are most likely to buy what you offer by automatically targeting keywords relevant to your products. This means that Amazon controls which keywords to include in your campaign based on how the platform understands your product. Amazon may base this on the content of your product pages, images, and related customer searches. Amazon places automatic ads on search results pages and product pages related to the products included in your campaign.

Does Amazon Know Your Product?

The first question you need to answer before setting up an Amazon PPC automatic campaign is “does Amazon know your product?” If you don’t have data from previous orders and SEO-optimized product listings, then Amazon wouldn’t know your products.

For those who are starting auto campaigns Amazon PPC, Amazon will help you cast a wide net. This means when you’re selling “shoes,” Amazon will more likely target the “fashion category” and will place your ad in random pages relevant to the set category until Amazon figures out what you actually offer. Amazon would know the types of products you offer based on the clicks and conversions on the randomly placed ads.

Having said that, if you have a low campaign budget and you think Amazon doesn’t know your products yet, we recommend that you go for manual bidding as you may need to spend a lot of money on the automatic campaign until Amazon figures out what you actually offer.

One tip that can help you figure out whether Amazon knows your product well enough or not is by going to the “Create new campaign” page, and by ticking manual targeting. Then, scroll down to “Products,” upload your product, and take a look at the suggested keywords below. If the suggested keywords are highly relevant to your product listing, then it’s safe to assume that Amazon knows your products.

Creating Amazon PPC Automatic Campaign

Creating Sponsored Product Automatic Campaign

If you’re aiming to create an Amazon ppc automatic campaign setup, the first thing you need to do is to Input your campaign name, portfolio, start and end date, daily budget, and choose automatic targeting.

Campaign Name

When choosing a campaign name, we recommend that you put in the product you’re advertising, the campaign type (i.e. SP Manual Campaign), and then the main keyword you’re targeting.


Portfolios are an organization technique which allows you to create different portfolios based on the types of products you’d like to advertise. For example, if you’re planning to advertise different types of footwear, you can create portfolios for each kind of footwear (i.e. boots, heels, flats, etc.) to organize your campaign.

Start and End Dates

For the start date, you can put any date. On the other hand, we recommend that you don’t put any date on the end date field, so you can extend your campaign anytime. Keeping your end date open can also work towards your favor in case you run of out of stock. Your ad will automatically stop rather than continue to run until the set end date.

Daily Budget

For the daily budget, it would be best to start with a low budget so you can collect data, test and optimize for a more affordable cost, and just increase your budget over time. You may start with $20 per day, although it may still vary depending on your goals.


For the targeting type, you have two options: automatic targeting and manual targeting.  As mentioned, auto campaigns are ideal for new PPC advertisers, while manual targeting is best for those who are already keen on keyword targeting, using match types, and manual bidding.

What are the Bidding Strategies for Sponsored Products?

What are the Bidding Strategies for Sponsored Products?

There are three types of bidding strategy for Sponsored Products:

  • Dynamic bids – down only (more for profitability)
  • Dynamic bids – up and own (more for scalability)
  • Fixed bids – ideal if you are knowledgeable in bid management

Amazon shows an “adjust bids by placement” option, but we don’t recommend this on an auto campaign because you are lacking the controls of manual and it can get extremely aggressive (and expensive) as you can adjust your bids by up to 900%.

How Can You Set Up Ad Groups for Sponsored Products?

How Can You Set Up Ad Groups for Sponsored Products

After setting your bidding strategy, you also need to set up your ad group. Start with one ad group. Choose an ad group name, and select the products that you want to include in this campaign. We recommend that you make your ad group more organized by just adding products that fall on the same type (i.e. lipsticks ad group separate from foundation ad group).

What are the Match Types for Sponsored Product Auto Targeting?

Match Types for Sponsored Product Auto

Next, you need to create your sponsored product targeting groups. When you tick the “Set default bid” field, Amazon will ask you to turn on the match types you prefer, whether close match, loose match, substitutes, and/or complement match.

  • Close match – ads will appear in front of shoppers who search for terms that are closely related to your product offerings.
  • Loose match – ads will appear in front of shoppers who search for terms that are loosely related to your product offerings.
  • Substitutes – ads will appear in front of shoppers who view the details of product pages that are similar to what you offer.
  • Complement match – ads will appear in front of shoppers who view the details of product pages that complement the products you offer.

What are the Different Structures of Sponsored Product Auto Targeting?

Amazon will also ask you to set your targeting type. You can choose from:

  • Type One – using one auto campaign per product or product grouping, and having all four types of targeting I one campaign. This type is a deal for easier ad management.
  • Type Two – using two auto campaigns per product or product grouping, and having one campaign for loose or close match, and one campaign for substitute and complement match. This type is ideal for scalability.
  • Type Three – using four auto campaigns per product or product grouping, and having one individual per type of targeting. This type is best for profitability.

How Can You Start Bidding for Sponsored Products?

Once you’re done setting up the targeting type, the next thing you have to consider is your starting bid. You can take a look at Amazon’s suggested start bid to know how competitive an ad space is. You can also adjust your bid relative to the pricing of your products, but we usually make bid adjustments after 10 clicks.

For example, if you’re selling an umbrella that costs $25 and your bid price is $2.5, that means when you reach 10 clicks (and hit $25), you’ll be on the losing side because your product also costs $25. Simply put, you can bid more aggressively for more expensive products, and bid lower for more affordable products.

Increasing and Decreasing Bids

Also, it’s ideal to test and optimize your campaign so you would know what works and what doesn’t. If you’re not gaining any impression in the first three days, that may mean that you need to increase your bid as your competitor may be bidding more on your chosen keywords. Meanwhile, if you’re getting a lot of impressions and clicks, but you’re not getting any conversions, that may mean that you need to decrease your bid.

What about Negative Keyword Targeting?

What about Negative Keyword Targeting?

Amazon has a negative keyword targeting option that allows you list all the keywords and products you want to exclude from your ad campaign to narrow down your targeting. This can help you increase your conversion rates as you aim to reach more shoppers who are interested in and are searching for terms that are highly relevant to your products.

If you’re new to Amazon PPC, you may skip this part and just let Amazon determine which keywords to include and not to include in your campaign.

How Can You Optimize Your Automatic Campaign?

Optimizing your auto campaign can help you reach the right audience based on the products you’d like to advertise. Here are some ways that can help you optimize your Amazon campaign:

  • Look at your placement data. Start with opening all your campaigns on ad groups, and then go “Placements” tab where you can see the data on your top of search conversions and product detail page conversions. Then, you can adjust your bids based on the data. For example, if you notice that you’re earning more from the top of the search, you can increase your bid on this type.
  • Focus on optimizing your bid by looking at your cost-per-click (CPC), bid price and advertising cost of sale (ACoS). Remember that the goal is to have a low ACoS.
  • Run any type of negatives. With an auto campaign, you can’t optimize bids on a search term level, so you must click on the “Search terms” tab, and take a look if you’re paying for any keyword that’s not relevant to your product. If you found some irrelevant keywords, you can tag them as negative keywords, so they won’t be part of your ad campaign.

Final Thoughts

We hope this guide has given you a more thorough perspective about Amazon PPC automatic campaign. If you’re having a hard time navigating Amazon PPC, we offer an Amazon advertising software that can help you achieve your revenue goals. Our software can also do bid automation, manual bidding, benchmarking, keyword searching, variance reporting, and more on your behalf.

If you are an Amazon Seller and you want to ask additional questions about the article or any Amazon FBA related questions. Please consider joining our Facebook Group, where I answer any questions you may have personally.

We are SellerMetrics, our software tool helps Amazon sellers, brands and agencies navigate Amazon Advertising PPC via bid automation, manual bid changes, and analytics.




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