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Before You Run Amazon Ads - 4 Things You Need to Do

Updated: 4 days ago

Amazon ads are a fantastic tool for children's book authors because people go to Amazon with the intent to shop. If you use Amazon ads to get in front of the right buyers, you'll increase your visibility and your sales.

Amazon Ads for Authors

That said, it is a tricky platform to learn at first but it is such a powerful piece of your marketing plan once you know what you’re doing.

In this blog post, we're sharing the most important things you need to do before running Amazon ads to your book.

Before you run Amazon ads

✔️ Optimize your metadata

Metadata is information about a product that the algorithms use to determine what type of book you have written. This includes your book title, categories, keywords, and much more. Before you run Amazon ads, make sure your book's metadata accurately reflects its contents.

Age Range

For example, some new authors tend to use too wide of an age range. Picture books are typically for ages 3-7 because, by the age of 7-8, children typically start reading chapter books. That does NOT mean that a 9 year old or 12 year old...or 25 year old can't enjoy your book. But the recommended reading age is supposed to indicate the specific group that your book will be most appropriate for.

Is your picture book going to be appropriate for 90% of 25 year olds? No. So make sure the ages you've selected are best for what you've written as too wide of an age range can confuse the computer.


With categories, make sure you are in as many relevant ones as possible. But don't just go by the name of the category - actually take a look at it on Amazon and make sure that your book fits among the others there. It’s important to make sure, double-check, and triple-check!


Something like "children's book" is far too vague. Instead, you'll want to find highly searched, low competition keywords that accurately teach the computer what type of book you have and who it's for.

Think of it like a snapshot; if a complete stranger looked at your keywords, would they understand what your book is about? If not, it's time to research some new keywords.

You'll want to make sure that your metadata is optimized before creating your Amazon ads because if the algorithm has a poor sense of what your book is or who it's for, then your ads will be shown to the wrong people. This will just result in a lack of sales and wasted money.

With researched and optimized metadata, you'll start seeing results faster both in your paid advertising and your organic sales and growth.

➡️ You can find our favorite tool for category and keyword research here.

✔️ Polish Your Amazon Listing Page

When you run an Amazon advertisement and someone clicks on the ad, it will take them to your Amazon product listing page so you have to make sure it's high quality before you start running ads. To do this, you'll need to look at your cover, product description, reviews, and A+ content.

Book Cover

While it might be well illustrated, you need to consider your cover from a stranger’s perspective. What is the cover conveying? If your book is silly, but you have a character on the front that looks serious then people might think that it is a serious book. If your illustration is lovely but the title font looks amateur, customers might make negative judgments or assumptions about the quality of the rest of the book without giving it a chance.

One of my books had lower sales than my others so I did some market research and asked my target audience for their unbiased opinions. What I found was that the cover looked too "old" and "classic" for what my audience was looking for. So I reached out to my illustrator and we set out on a mission to keep the concept but make it modern. Check out the transformation:

Cover Design | The Song Garden by Vicky Weber

People really do judge a book by its cover so make sure yours draws people in!

Product Description

The text that goes on the back cover of your book and the product description on Amazon are two different things. The product description should be more about your reader than the book itself--what they're going to get out of the story, enticing and intriguing them, etc. Writing a great product description can be deceptively difficult so if you find you need more help, check out the examples in this video.


Amazon ads tend to perform best when a book has 20+ reviews so if your book has fewer than that, you'll want to work on gathering those before running your advertisements. There are lots of ways you can do this. If you're releasing a new book, you can use a launch team to boost initial reviews but if your book is already published, you'll want to consider KDP free promotions, submitting to reviewers, and reminding your followers to leave a review whenever possible (often, they won't think to do it without prompting!)

A+ Content

Think of A+ content almost like an ad. It is a space right on your product page that is labeled "from the publisher" where you can show off what makes your book special: spreads, reviews, etc. According to Amazon, A+ content increases sales an average 3-10%. Plus, it makes you look more credible and on-par with traditional publishing houses.

For a tutorial on how to upload A+ content to your listing, see the video below:

Want someone to create your A+ content for you? Just send us an email.

✔️ Learn how AMS Ads work

Once you have a solid foundation in place you’ll want to start researching how AMS Ads work. Many people misunderstand how the platform functions.

For example, when you run an ad on Facebook and you give them $5 per day, Facebook will spend $5 per day. But with Amazon ads, choosing a daily budget of $5 per day does not necessarily mean it will spend that much daily.

If you took a look at my AMS dashboard, you would see that I have several ads with a $1,000 per day budget. In reality, I only spend about $300-$400 per month on ads total. That does not mean that you should start with a daily budget that high.

You want to start low and slow because you want to build a strong foundation that you can scale as you see sales and profitability. If you just throw money at the problem, you’re going to end up wasting a lot of money. Instead, focus on getting in front of the right people.

✔️ Research your targets ahead of time

Before you actually create your Amazon ad and launch it, make sure you prep in advance. Start with writing your ad text options and keep them in a document to use later. It's always best if you have multiple options as well so you can test which ad text resonates more with your audience.

You'll also want to research keywords, categories, and similar book titles beforehand and keep them in a Google sheet for easy reference later. You'll use these as your targets inside your ads.


Then, it's time to start creating! I hope this post has been helpful on your publishing journey.

If you need help learning more about Amazon ads, consider joining Amazon Ads Academy - our membership program with self-paced content and live group coaching calls twice per month to keep you accountable and take your ads from frustrating to profitable.

Amazon Ads Academy | Children's Book Authors

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