The average Amazon seller spends around $258 or more on advertisements per day. 

Stats on Amazon match types indicate that roughly 62% of these costs go on broad match types. But why is this the case? What is a broad match type? Is broad match type the best use of your money?

And more importantly, is there a way of using Amazon match types to boost your revenue even further? 

In short, yes.

One of the main ways to achieve this is to optimize your Amazon ad campaigns and to do this, yes, you guessed it, you’ll need to know all about Amazon match types. 

That said, let’s explore Amazon match types in more detail.

What Are Amazon Match Types?

Amazon match types are how Amazon recommends products to customers.

Amazon match types allow you to specify what queries make your product appear on a customer’s search. Not too dissimilar to PPC keyword match types, you can use your Amazon keyword strategy to reach specific customers or expand your ad reach.

So let’s move on to what Amazon match types you can choose from, their use, and their pros and cons.

Amazon Match Types: Amazon Broad Match

This screenshot shows Amazon search results for “where to buy dog collars”

Broad match means that when a user makes a query that includes the keywords that you have chosen, your product will appear in the search. Broad matches account for any close variations of your chosen words. 

Close variations include:

  • Plural forms: For example, if they type ‘bulbs’ instead of ‘bulb.’
  • Acronyms and Abbreviations: These are any words used to symbolize or shorten another word, such as ‘NY’ instead of ‘new york.’
  • Stemming: This is when they add an additional word to the keyword criteria you have specified. For instance, your product would show if you wanted the keyword ‘notepad’ and typed ‘pink notepad .’ your product would show.
  • Accents: For example, ‘café ‘ rather than ‘cafe.’

All these variations work with broad matches. However, misspellings are not included in any Amazon match types.

Use case

Broad Amazon match types are best used when you want your product to reach a large audience. For example, if you aren’t exactly sure what keywords will direct customers to your product. 

Or if you already know what keywords people use, but want to reach a wider audience. Then, broad matches can increase your ad reach.

Pros

Customers can discover products they might not otherwise have searched for, i.e., your product, so new customers can find your brand.

You can also get relevant keywords that you might not have thought of. For example, say a customer is, in fact, looking for your product, but they are using keywords different from what you thought they would use.

Broad match ensures these customers are still directed to your product.

Cons

Broad Amazon match types may show your product to the wrong people. Meaning your product won’t be relevant to them.

For example, if you use ‘costumes’ as your keyword and only sell ‘adult’s costumes.’ Then, when a customer is looking for ‘children’s costumes,’ and your product shows up, that wouldn’t benefit you or them.

You end up paying money for an ad that doesn’t reach the right clientele, and waste money on a campaign with very little return.

Amazon Match Types: Exact Match

This screenshot shows Amazon search results for “Blue Dog Collar.”

An exact match means the user’s query must be an accurate or close match to your specified keywords. An exact match allows for plural variations, but the words must be in the same order. Without any additional words added.

Use case

Of all of the Amazon match types, an exact match is best used to understand what keywords users will search for your product. For example, if you know that users will search for ‘red women’s shoes.’

Using the exact match type, you can ensure that any irrelevant matches are removed.

This means if a customer types in ‘blue women’s shoes’ or ‘red men’s shoes,’ you won’t be wasting your budget on these irrelevant searches.

Pros

The exact match means you save money by excluding matches that aren’t relevant. For example, you only bid on words you know customers will search for.

Exact matches can see a higher clickthrough rate. By directing a product to customers you know are interested, it is bound to result in more sales.

Cons

An exact match can limit our search criteria. For example, if you set exact match on ‘shoes’ and sell a range of shoes.

When a customer types ‘women’s shoes’, your product won’t be shown to them. Even if you sell them. This means a potentially lost customer.

Exact match research takes time. Scouring the research board for keywords to use can be difficult if you are on a deadline.

A misstep will prevent your product from appearing. Exact match keywords must be extensively researched to be effective.

Amazon Match Types: Phrase Match

This screenshot shows Amazon search results for “I want a red collar for my dog”

Phrase match sits between exact and broad Amazon match types in terms of restrictiveness. Here, if a user enters your keyword, additional words can be added if your original words remain in the same order.

Use case

This match can increase your range by adding user-specified keywords, while also ensuring that the user’s query is relevant to your business.

For instance, you have set a keyword ‘Men’s shirt.’ You have a range of men’s shirts, so you want any keyword variations showing.

However, you want to preclude ‘women’s shirts’ as you don’t sell those. Using a phrase match will ensure your product is shown.

Pros

Phrase matches are cost-effective Amazon match types. They give you more control than broad matches by ensuring the right keywords are present in a match. As a result, you won’t waste your budget on irrelevant Amazon searches.

The phrase match is more flexible than the exact match, which doesn’t allow potentially relevant user variations. This means you can reach a larger audience.

Cons

A phrase match is more expensive than an exact match because you are bidding on more keywords. Bidding on the wrong keywords will come at an expense for you. 

Your keywords may be matched with phrase matches, even if the user terms are different from your specified ones.

Phrase matches can also be limiting. If you have the keyword ‘fried meat.’ When a user enters ‘fried chicken meat,’ your match won’t appear because the order of the words has been changed.

The keyword may still be relevant, but it won’t be shown to your customers.

Are You Ready to Start Using Amazon Match Types?

Using Amazon match types enables you to optimize your campaign strategy. Once you know your campaign goals, selecting the best match type should be a breeze.

However, you aren’t confined to just one match type. Experiment with various kinds of Amazon match types until you find the one with the best outcome for your campaign.

For more advice on Amazon match types, contact our partners at Sequence. Happy matching!

Phillip Scaglione

Director of Ads, Sequence