KDP Advertising: addressing the “no impressions” problem

I’m back again, helping you not get totally fleeced by Amazon when you take out your first sets of ads for your book.  This is more fun than just reading a boring tutorial, right?  You are watching me potentially lose money in real time!  Fun!  This is the post where you can follow along

First, let’s check on the last ad. If you’ll recall, we left off with me getting a “review” email from Amazon, indicating that they were thinking about running my ad.

Spoiler alert:  they decided to run my ad.  A few hours later I got another email saying that my ad was “eligible to be run.”

You’re wondering– what does that mean?  Is “eligible” the same thing as “running”?

Yes and no.

“Eligible” means that it CAN be run, and that you can go over to https://advertising.amazon.com, log in to your account, and check up on your ads.  You might want to give your ads a couple of days to start up, but be sure to check them every single day so you can turn them off if they blow up in an unfavorable direction.

Here’s what is happening with my ad currently:

That’s a big fat goose egg.  Nothing!  Nada!  I am getting absolutely no love from Amazon for this ad.  I know that not because of the $0.00 spent on ads and $0.00 sales made, but because of the 0 impressions number.  That means Amazon is not taking my super-cheap 10 cent bid as an opening offer, and that I need to raise it.

Here’s some further insight into why this is happening:  Amazon is showing me their “suggested bid” for each word, meaning that is how much they would like to get per click.  Then they are showing my ridiculously low bid, which is how much I would like to pay.   Apparently there is too much difference between these (and too many people willing to pay higher prices for their clicks), so Amazon is not taking me up on my low offer.

I did not say “people willing to pay the suggested bid” because I actually don’t know that.  Amazon is not going to tell me what other people are paying, only what they would like to get.  I doubt anyone is actually paying $2.52 per click to advertise on the word “author marketing,” although maybe David Gaughran or Joanna Penn are much richer than I think and are doing that.  What do I know?

Whatever the case, that is why my ads show as “delivering” but are not actually getting any impressions. You always want the chance to incrementally raise your bid to make your ads start running, rather than taking the atrocious “default bid” that Amazon will offer you, which if you’ll recall from the last post) was 91 CENTS in this case.  I said it in that post and I’ll say it again– 91 cents is too much to pay for a totally untested ad (especially if you are just starting out).  So, if you have this problem where you started an ad and it hasn’t gotten aid any impressions, do not worry– just go back in and adjust the bid 5 to 10 cents at a time until you start getting some impressions.   Impressions mean the ads are actually running, after which you’ll get some clicks and hopefully some sales.

Here’s how you adjust all the bids in your ad at once, just to save you some time:

Click “Active,” then look for the little box that says “Adjust bid.”   Click that, and this will pop up:

Enter the new bid price, then click save.  Be sure to include the decimal point (meaning, .20 for twenty cents), because Amazon will have no problem charging you $20 per click if you forget it.   I’M SERIOUS.

I reset my ads to $.20/ click and will continue to raise them by 10 cents per day until they start to move (or until I reach my personal budget threshold and turn off this particular ad experiment).

UPDATE:   The ads finally started to actually be shown (and by that I mean “get impressions”) when I raised the bid to $.40/ click.

Come to think of it,  the total lack of movement on my ads could mean that Amazon is salty at me for telling you how not to give them all of your money, and if that is the case, that’s fine.

Keep coming back to this blog for more of what’s happening with this ad!  You know you’re curious!

While we’re waiting for something to happen over there, let’s start running another cool type of ad that you might not know about, which is the “Category Ad.”


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