Sarah BerryWeb Marketing Consultant
- 8 minute read
- Sarah Berry is a Google Analytics-certified Web Marketing Consultant at WebFX. She’s written over 400 articles on digital marketing, covering topics like SEO, CRO, and Amazon. When she isn’t polishing her Time Magazine Person of the Year Award, she’s spending time with her flock of ducks.
Small-to-midsized businesses in the U.S. sell more than 4000 products on Amazon every minute. If you browse the Amazon Best Sellers list, which updates hourly, you may spot some of their products.
For Amazon sellers, though, that list is more than just fun facts. The list gives sellers insight into their product’s popularity and ranking compared to competing products. Amazon Best Sellers Rank (Amazon BSR) is a number based on the Amazon Best Sellers list, which ranges from one to over one million.
BSR measures the sales and popularity of a product compared to products in the same category and sub-categories. A lower number, like one, equals a better BSR. Curious to learn more about Amazon BSR?
Keep reading, because this post goes beyond answering, “What is Amazon BSR?” Learn what determines your Amazon Best Sellers Rank, as well as how to boost yours. If you’d like to learn more about selling, marketing, and advertising online, sign up for Revenue Weekly!
What is Amazon BSR?
Amazon Best Sellers Rank measures the sales frequency (or popularity) of a product on a scale of one to one million or more.
A comparative metric, your BSR depends on the sales frequency of other products in your product’s category and sub-categories. For example, if you sell a griddle categorized as “Kitchen & Dining” and “Electric Griddles,” then Amazon will compare your product’s sales to other products in “Kitchen & Dining” and “Griddles.” You will have a separate Best Sellers Rank for “Kitchen & Dining” and “Electric Griddles.” Your Amazon Best Sellers Rank frequently changes, as Amazon updates it hourly.
How to view your BSR on Amazon
If you want to check your BSR on Amazon, then follow these steps:
- Go to your product page on Amazon
- Scroll to your “Product information”
- Check for “Best Sellers Rank” in the displayed table
You can also log in to your Amazon account and use these steps:
- Go to “Manage Inventory”
- Click “Active Listings”
- Choose the product
- Select “Actions” and then “Edit Details”
- View the “Amazon Product Summary”
- Look for “Amazon Sales Rank”
In most cases, it’s easier and faster to check your BSR on Amazon versus your account. If your product doesn’t have a Best Sellers Rank, you can check the rankings for your categories by:
- Clicking “Best Sellers” from the main menu on Amazon
- Choosing the appropriate category and/or sub-categories
- Viewing the list of Best Sellers
You can also use the Best Sellers list to research and select the best categories for your products.
What determines Amazon Best Sellers Rank?
Amazon doesn’t reveal its exact formula for calculating Best Sellers Rank. According to the ecommerce platform, it uses a product’s recent and historical sales to generate its Best Sellers list every hour. A few other factors, however, influence your BSR.
Learn more about what determines your Amazon Best Sellers Rank now:
Your category influences your BSR because it’s a comparative metric. If you categorize your product (say a portable charger) as “Electronics” versus “Cell Phones & Accessories,” that will directly shape your Best Sellers Rank. Depending on the number of products, as well as the search intent behind those categories, you may earn a higher or lower BSR.
Like your product category, your product sub-categories also shape your Amazon Best Sellers Rank.
As it’s challenging to earn a top spot in category Best Sellers lists, due to the number of products, it’s often easier for sellers to compete in sub-category Best Sellers lists. These lists are more specific, which can help you top the charts, especially if you sell a product that exactly matches that sub-category.
Frequency is another data point that determines your BSR.
“Amazon admits to looking at sales frequency for compiling Best Sellers Rank.”
Amazon admits to looking at this data point. How frequently your product sells directly correlates to its popularity.
If people are buying your product at a rapid rate (think what happens when a new gaming console or smartphone comes out), it demonstrates the popularity and demand for your item. For a steady Best Sellers Rank, companies must maintain the momentum of the frequency of their sales.
Amazon also looks at your product’s sales history. While brand-new products can top the Best Sellers list, Amazon will often prefer products with a consistent sales history.
These aren’t one-hit wonders, but consistent products that perform (and sell) over time. Products that fluctuate in sales will often struggle to maintain a low (or good) Best Sellers Rank.
While Amazon cares about a product’s selling history, it gives precedence to the most recent sales. A high-selling product, even if it’s brand-new, can dominate the Best Sellers list because it is selling.
People are buying it, and they’re buying it fast, demonstrating that the product is popular and in demand by shoppers. Recency, however, must also balance with frequency. A brand-new product may dominate the Best Sellers list for a week, but as sales and demand decrease, it will drop in BSR because its sales frequency contrasts its past performance.
Even though the product may still sell well for the seller, it’s not selling like it did, which can lead to a poor BSR.
How to improve your Amazon BSR
If you want to improve your Amazon Best Sellers Rank, you can take a few actions, including:
Find what competing BSRs do right
Competitor research is a useful tool for any Amazon marketing or advertising adventure, whether it’s keyword research for an ad campaign or copywriting research for a product description. Use your top-selling competitors to discover ways to boost your BSR. View the Best Sellers list for your product’s category and sub-category.
Look at the top-selling products (or your competition’s products) and check out their product listings. What do they do that may drive users to purchase their products? Do they optimize their listings for search engine optimization (SEO), for example, and rank well in search results?
Or, do they write some A+ product features that focus on their products’ uses and benefits? Take the time to analyze competing product listings. Find what they do well and incorporate that into your product listings.
Choose relevant categories and niche sub-categories
The categories and sub-categories you choose play a significant part in your Amazon BSR.
If you want to top the list of Amazon Best Sellers for your category and sub-category, then you need to pick the right ones. Your sub-category will often offer you the most value and potential, as categories tend to have too much competition for SMBs to compete. Get the most value from your sub-category selection with these steps:
- Compile a list of potential sub-categories for your products — focus on the most relevant ones
- Analyze the best-selling products for those sub-categories — do they match your product?
- Look for niche categories with not as many big competitors
- Update your product’s sub-category
You can always change your product sub-category, so experiment with different options.
Optimize your product listings for users and A9
Maximizing your sales on Amazon requires SEO. You can’t succeed without optimizing your product listings for users and Amazon’s product ranking algorithm. Amazon’s algorithm, also called A9, looks at several features to rank your product listing in search results.
If your product doesn’t rank at the top of search results, then you will struggle. The first three products in Amazon search results earn almost 65% of all clicks. That’s a massive part of your market that you can’t afford to give away — especially if you want to improve your BSR on Amazon.
- Researching keywords relevant to your product with a tool like Sonar
- Adding your keywords to your product’s title, description, and features
- Uploading high-quality, professional-grade photos to your listing
- Focusing your product features on your product’s benefits and uses
- Nurturing verified reviews for your product with programs like Amazon Vine
If you need help optimizing your product listings, you can always try SEO services for Amazon. These services provide you with a team of SEOs that will research keywords, write copy, and turn your listings into top-ranking (and best-selling) products.
Need help making your product a bestseller?
Selling on Amazon isn’t easy. It requires serious work and dedication, which is why many businesses on Amazon partner with an experienced agency for Amazon to lead their marketing and advertising campaigns.
At WebFX, we’re one of those agencies. With more than 25 years of experience and a seasoned team of more than 500, we’re a top choice for SMBs looking to leverage Amazon. Through our custom strategies and client-focused approach, we’ve helped our clients earn more than $3 billion in revenue — and we’re ready to help you too.
The first step to increasing your SMB’s Amazon sales is getting a FREE proposal.
One of our experts will be in touch within 24 hours!
Sarah Berry is a Google Analytics-certified Web Marketing Consultant at WebFX. She’s written over 400 articles on digital marketing, covering topics like SEO, CRO, and Amazon. When she isn’t polishing her Time Magazine Person of the Year Award, she’s spending time with her flock of ducks.
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