Copywriting for Amazon: Why Intent Matters

What’s the #1 mistake Amazon sellers make when listing their products? 

Focusing on themselves. 

They completely miss the mark on what’s MOST important – the customer. 

Copywriting for Amazon can be tricky but it’s not rocket science either. All you gotta do is understand the person making the purchasing decision.  

Let’s dive into some of the psychology that goes into optimizing a listing for customer intent. 

What is Customer Intent?

To put it as plainly as possible, customer intent is the reason a customer does something.  

Take Amazon. In most cases, a customer is there to buy something.  

Imagine a customer types “ceiling fan” into the search box. As a company, you have to think about 2 things: 

  1. The product
  1. The why – for what purpose or need?

Indeed, said customer is searching for both. They have an idea in their head of what they want. But they can’t upload an entire idea into a search box, so they simplify. 

Number 1 will be the simplified version of what they want, usually related to primary keywords. And number 2 – the problem – is something they’re keeping like a secret in their minds. That problem – the why – is the intent.

Can Understanding Customer Intent Improve Your Listing Copy?

In the case of the ceiling fan, can you guess the problem?  

Maybe it’s sweltering hot outside. Or they want to save on AC bills. Perhaps they’re looking for better air circulation. It’s possible the customer is looking for a new ceiling fan for their workplace, home office or tiny bedroom. Maybe they’ve seen an ad on TV. Or all their friends have one. Maybe this customer wants a fan because they care about the environment and want a sustainable option for cooling their home. 

If you can anticipate your customer’s needs and guide them to your product to solve their problem, they will be much happier to follow your lead. Try to use copy and keywords that will jump out at them and make them think “Hey, that’s exactly what I’m looking for!”. 

So yes, keyword research is important. But understanding what’s behind the keyword – even more so. 

Start with the Inverted Pyramid

What’s a form of media we consume every day that we can learn from? 

The news.

The reason for bringing up the news is the strategy. Every news story follows the inverted pyramid method. And this is a great method to use for your Amazon copywriting.

The headline – the most critical information – goes first. It grabs attention and lets the person decide if they want to continue reading. In the case of an Amazon listing, a customer usually gets attracted by images and reviews.

The next most important feature of your listing would be the title. It offers valuable information and tells the customer they’re in the right place. It’s also the first bit of (and sometimes only) text a customer will see. 

Think about what your customer absolutely needs to know that will guide them towards reading the details. 

You can read more about the perfect product title in this article, but the main thing you need to consider is stepping into your customer’s shoes.

Not all customers fit one mold. Some quickly skim through a few words in a title and impulsively hit the “buy now” button. Others meticulously scour a listing scrutinizing every single character.  

However they choose to make their purchasing decision, make sure you’re writing in a methodical way. Most important and timely information goes first. Then leave the nitty-gritty details for lower down in your listing for those who are interested. 

Inverted pyramid method for copywriting on Amazon

Speak Like a Human to Actual Humans 

You want sales? Speak to your customer. Understand them. Get extra acquainted with their problems and how your product can change their lives. And most important – speak to them in their language. 

I love finding examples of copywriting gone wrong on Amazon. Like this one: 

Stuffing Amazon Listing keywords example

This, my friends, is an example of keyword stuffing. Notice the merciless cramming of keywords into the title? I can’t even tell if they’re spelling blanket correctly anymore – that’s how many times I’ve seen the word in 200 characters! 

When I see examples like this, I feel personally attacked. Who are they targeting here? Everyone. They don’t care how their title sounds. They only care about the algorithm – getting in front of as many people as they possibly can.  

Maybe for a generic product like a blanket, it works. But if you have a special product designed for the specific needs of a small group, you need to be smarter. And more human. 

There’s a quote from Meredith Hill: 

“When you speak to everyone, you speak to no one.” 

Sounds about right. 

It’s important to keep in mind too that if you’re using inaccurate keywords, this could affect your conversion rate and eventually your ranking. I go over this in how the Amazon Flywheel works in a perpetual cycle that eventually sustains itself.

Getting the Right Mindset with Review Mining 

Have you heard of review mining? 

Think of it as excavating a valuable mineral. That mineral is customer GOLD.  

The idea is to use the customer’s own words when copywriting for Amazon listings – whether in the title, bullet points, A+ or description.  

So how do you do it? How can you – as a company – get into the customer’s mind?  

The reviews! And they don’t even have to be reviews for your OWN product. They can belong to your competitors. Go into the reviews and mine that gold – see what customers are talking about, find the ideas that are being repeated, and use their words.

This is a secret tactic that copywriters use to understand the customer. And Amazon is THE ultimate place to find reviews. It’s full of them. 

Let’s look at some of the reviews from the Mexican/saddle/picnic/beach/camping/car blanket in the previous section. 

Review Mining on Amazon

I underlined some of the juicy lines that you could use to flag a customer’s interest. There is so much value in here. Using the customer’s own words allows you to create a better connection with them. You’re speaking to them in their own language! 

“A definite must for sitting around the campfire on a cool evening”. Doesn’t that sound way more enticing than “this magical blanket will solve all your problems!”. Okay, they don’t specifically say that anywhere but that’s the vibe I get from the almighty blanket that does it all.

Creating a Frictionless Buyer Journey 

Humans are constantly finding ways to save time. They don’t want to spend hours scrolling through products on Amazon, comparing prices and reviews.  

They want to solve their problem quickly and painlessly. The easier a buying journey you can provide someone, the happier everyone will be. 

This means feeding the right information to your customer in the right amount and in the right place.  

When you start big and go into details, you allow their natural buying process to play out in their heads. With each mental “check” they make, they come closer to a conversion.  

Think of this as answering any objections with an obvious and easy solution – your product.   

For example:  

A customer is looking for some organic granola. They’ll start by typing “organic granola” into the search box. This is the product they’re searching for. What’s the intent? Let’s say this particular customer wants to lose weight and is looking for something that tastes great. 

Among the products below, this Amazon’s Choice product looks pretty good just from the title. It gives the customer a lot of information about what the product is and checks off her requirements: organic granola. We also see details like high fiber, healthy, natural and low carb. These all signal to the customer that this product could be perfect for their needs. Plus, macadamia and coconut flavor? Yum!

organic granola search

Key Takeaways When Copywriting for Amazon

Customers don’t have all day to read through a listing. They want easy information. And fast. 

Think about these points when copywriting for Amazon listings: 

key takeaways for copywriting on amazon

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