Amazon’s A9 Algorithm: Are You Relevant?

By Buy Box Experts on October 3, 2018

Lately, we’ve been diving deep into the A9 algorithm to help you crack it! And we wanted to keep exploring the factors that impact your ranking. Today’s focus: relevancy.

Amazon’s A9 algorithm tries to show only the most relevant products to match a user’s search query. But what exactly does this mean? And how can you optimize your product to be relevant?

Relevance & Search Engines

All search engines are built upon the same principle: show the user what they are searching for. The algorithms sort through all of the results and rank them to create a hierarchy of results ranging from the most relevant to the least relevant.


Because if search engines like Google, Bing, Yahoo, and Amazon itself didn’t provide users with the information they needed, users would simply stop using them.

Let’s take a look at an example.

If you were googling information on how to hard boil an egg, you would expect Google to provide the instructions in the first result. Users would be disappointed to get search results that only included recipes for hard-boiled eggs. Although those results are related to hard-boiled eggs, they aren’t as relevant as the instructions. So, if you really needed those instructions, you would probably search somewhere else.

Likewise, Amazon’s algorithm tries to show users the most relevant products in results pages and in the Buy Box so that users will make a purchase. By showing the most relevant products, Amazon builds a good reputation that keeps users coming back query after query.

Determining Relevancy

While search engines are built on providing relevant results, the way they determine those results varies based on user intent, location, and other factors. Luckily, Amazon is pretty straightforward when it comes to determining relevancy because location isn’t always necessary and most users are ready to buy, eliminating complications that Google and other search engines face.

Amazon relies on your content to determine if your product is relevant or not. The A9 algorithm reads all the content on your listing — title, bullet points, product description, backend keywords — and indexes your content.

If you are unfamiliar with the term indexing, it simply refers to how the A9 algorithm (or any other search engine algorithm) stores the information from your content. Essentially, the A9 algorithm scans your content and indexes (or stores) all the unique words that you have in your content. When a user searches for something using one of your keywords, the A9 algorithm will consider putting your product in the results.

This is why it’s so important to optimize your content with keywords!

You don’t always have to have the exact keyword in your content. The A9 algorithm is smart enough to recognize related words. However, it is best practice to include as many relevant keywords as you can within your content without “keyword stuffing.”

Here are some tips to keep in mind when crafting your product listing:

  • Include high-volume keywords where it counts. The A9 algorithm weighs words in your title and the beginning of your bullet points first.
  • Maximize character counts. The more words you have in a listing, the more words you could potentially index for.
  • Write to the user. While you want to optimize your content for A9, the most important thing is that you provide users with the information they want to know about your product: what it does, how big it is, how it works, how to assemble it, when to use it, etc.

For more tips on how to write relevant product descriptions and increase your Amazon rank, check out our Ultimate Guide to Listing Optimization or contact us.

Buy Box Experts
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