The Amazon’s Choice badge can give businesses a decisive advantage on the online marketplace. Still, a big question mark looms over the selection criteria for awarding the label. For a short time, however, Amazon listed concrete requirements for receiving the coveted badge on the US marketplace.
In this article, you will find answers to the following questions:
- What is the Amazon’s Choice badge?
- How does Amazon’s Choice differ from the Bestseller badge?
- Which criteria decide who obtains the Amazon’s Choice badge?
- What can sellers do to receive Amazon’s Choice themselves?
What is the Amazon’s Choice badge?
Amazon has always used its algorithm to determine which products customers see during their search. Among other things, the online giant awards exclusive labels that are displayed over selected products. In addition to the well-known Bestseller badge, Amazon introduced the Amazon’s Choice badge in 2015 (Germany: 2017) to simplify shopping via the language assistant Alexa.
Unlike searching via browser or the shopping app, Alexa’s product search via voice commands provides customers only with certain product results. To do this, the language assistant first accesses the user’s previous orders and suggests the corresponding products.
If the customer has never ordered an article from the product category they are looking for, Amazon recommends a product. This is where the Amazon’s Choice badge comes into play: The Choice classification allows the algorithm to quickly make a preselection and suggest the most suitable product for the respective search.
Note: Amazon’s Choice badge plays an important role in making Alexa voice search products visible to potential customers.
In the meantime, however, the significance of the label is no longer limited to voice commerce. The Amazon’s Choice badge is also displayed on the search results pages in the browser and app. As a direct recommendation to buy from Amazon, it can have a positive effect on sales. It draws the potential buyer’s attention to the product and creates additional trust. It is therefore worthwhile for retailers to know how to obtain the exclusive label.
HOW DOES THE AMAZON’S CHOICE BADGE DIFFER FROM THE BESTSELLER BADGE?
The big brother of the Amazon’s Choice badge is the Bestseller badge. It is awarded to the product with the comparatively highest sales in a subcategory on the marketplace. This means that in the past, one could get the badge with a little bit of skill. Listed in the right niche category, some products could quickly become Bestsellers and increase their sales thanks to the label.
The Amazon’s Choice badge is more difficult to manipulate. It is assigned in relation to keywords. The aim is to suggest customers the optimal product for each specific search query.
In contrast to the Bestseller badge, the Amazon’s Choice badge does not refer to a product category, but always to specific keywords. From this, we can derive a first criterion for receiving the Amazon’s Choice label:
The product and keyword must be strongly associated with each other. This is the only way to maximize the number of customers who find the product in their search for a specific keyword, ultimately buy it and thus help it gain the badge.
WHICH CRITERIA DECIDE WHO OBTAINS THE AMAZON’S CHOICE BADGE?
The exact requirements for Amazon’s Choice have long been a mystery to sellers on Amazon. The German marketplace merely said that Amazon recommended “top-rated, immediately available products at a reasonable price”.
In the past there have been accusations that the badge is for sale. In return for price reductions or higher investments in advertising, individual sellers were to receive the label preferentially. However, the retail giant explained that sellers could not register to receive the badge or buy it.
The only thing that was clear so far was that sales figures alone are not enough to become Amazon’s Choice. Otherwise the Amazon’s Choice badge would hardly differ from the Bestseller badge..
On the US website, Amazon tested lifting the veil on the criteria. The shopping giant named specific conditions on the respective product detail pages in the form of key points which should be decisive for the allocation of the badge. After a test phase of this view, Amazon returned to the old detail page.
Accordingly, the secret recipe seems to be a combination of bestseller ranking, low return rate, good reviews and fast delivery. Additionally, the conversion rate of the customers who have searched for the product plays a decisive role. The exact weighting of the criteria remains unclear. However, the following influencing factors can be derived:
- a high click and conversion rate for search queries
- immediate availability with Amazon Prime
- a high star ranking (at least 4 stars)
- a low return rate (measured by product type)
- a bestseller status of the seller in the respective product category
Due to the unclear importance of the individual criteria, it is not possible to rank them conclusively. For example, cheaper products may receive the Amazon’s Choice badge even though other products in the same category produce higher sales. Nevertheless, we can deduce basic steps that may influence whether you receive the badge or not.
WHAT CAN SELLERS DO TO GET AMAZON’S CHOICE BADGE FOR THEIR PRODUCTS?
Interpreting the criteria results in some actionable advice that vendors and sellers should consider when targeting the badge:
Ensure fast delivery and availability
Choice products are generally qualified for Prime shipping. It is therefore advised that sellers use the Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) service. Among other things, vendors should keep an eye on their Fast Track Glance View Rate and their Vendor Lead Time (VLT).
Promoting positive reviews
Product quality is essential to generate as many ratings as possible of at least 4 stars. Effective review management and carefully formulated product content are also crucial. With precise product descriptions, misunderstandings and negative reviews can be avoided. A high return rate can also be prevented in this way.
Targeted search engine optimization
In general, search engine optimized content is the key to the Amazon’s Choice badge. Since the label is allocated on a keyword basis, a successful Amazon SEO takes the center stage. By including as many search-relevant keywords as possible in the title, the backend and the bullet points, the chance that customers will come across the product when typing in a keyword increases.
By integrating more precise product features in the form of so-called longtail keywords, your product becomes more relevant for specific search queries. The more precise description creates more niche categories and thus new chances to receive the Amazon’s Choice label for certain keywords.
The keyword “drinking bottle”, for example, is highly competitive. All presented results have different specifications and the most popular model with 32oz capacity is Amazon’s Choice.
However, by restricting the keywords to for instance “Drinking bottle 64oz”, a new possibility of becoming a Choice product for this specific keyword opens up. Additionally, since customers get in their search results exactly the product that fits their needs, there is an additional potential for higher sales.
With the increasing importance of voice commerce, it is becoming ever more critical for sellers on Amazon to engage with the Amazon’s Choice badge. However, due to the limited number of results, it is difficult for merchants to become visible to customers. The Amazon’s Choice badge can provide a foundation to increase customer visibility and increase sales through voice-driven purchases.
The Amazon’s Choice algorithm consists of a multitude of factors whose weighting remains unclear. Unlike the Bestseller badge, the label is assigned individually for specific keywords. It is therefore particularly important to link the product with as many relevant keywords as possible. In this way, the chance of obtaining the popular badge for one or more keywords can be increased.
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