How to Optimize Your Listings with Amazon Categories

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Chattanooga, USA - November 15, 2011: A stack of several Amazon.com packages on white background.

Are Amazon categories really so important to get right? Yes, they are. But why? Because Amazon is full of window shoppers. 

It’s estimated that 23% of online shoppers go to Amazon to seek inspiration for things to buy before they even have a product in mind. That means they will browse through their main page and scroll through different categories that interest them. So, if your product is within a highly trafficked category, you will have a much better chance of attracting customers.

So how do you optimize your Amazon categories to attract customers? We believe two tactics work best:

  • Targeting popular categories
  • Taking advantage of Amazon’s Browse Tree Guides

Target Popular Categories

Understanding current buyer trends will help you know how you should categorize your products. For example, only a handful of Amazon’s categories are among the most frequently purchased from. So you should know which Amazon categories are most popular among its shoppers. 

Here are the four categories that Amazon highlights as their most popular.

  1. Electronics

According to Statistica, 44% of Amazon’s customers purchased a product from this category. But that’s no surprise—consumers are tech-obsessed. They are always searching for new devices that can help improve their efficiency at work and home.

This category encompasses most consumer electronics and electronic accessories, including:

  • Computers and accessories
  • TVs
  • Video game consoles
  • Cell phones and accessories
  • Cameras
  • Audio systems
  • Office electronics
  • Smart home devices
  • Musical instruments
  • Headphones

If your product fits into any of these categories, you can classify it under “Electronics” and tap into one of Amazon’s best-selling markets.

  1. Clothing, Shoes, and Jewelry

An incredible 84% of people have purchased clothing or shoes online. But on Amazon, Statistica found only 43% of their shoppers have bought clothing items from them. While that’s significantly lower than clothing’s total share of online shopping, it’s still enough for sellers to get excited about.

Within the clothing category, you can further differentiate your products into different types of clothing, like:

  • Hoodies
  • Swimwear
  • Tops
  • Dresses
  • Pants
  • Jeans
  • Shoes
  • Button-up shirts

Be aware, many of Amazon’s clothing subcategories are fairly specific, so you may have trouble targeting additional Amazon categories with these products.

  1. Movies, Music, and Games

A companion to Electronics, this category more specifically targets gamers, movie lovers, and audiophiles alike. It also includes Amazon’s streaming services (Amazon Prime Video and Amazon Music). 

Products within this category include:

  • Vinyl records
  • CDs
  • Blu-ray
  • DVDs
  • Video games
  • Musical instruments
  • Computer monitors 
  • PC gaming components
  • Headphones

Since this category shares some overlap with “Electronics,” you can potentially target both of these highly trafficked categories with a single product.

  1. Books

Amazon’s first product continues to be a bestseller. Along with physical copies of books, this category also includes Amazon’s Audible subscription and their eBooks. 

Virtually every type of book can be found within this category:

  • Nonfiction
  • Fiction
  • Comic books
  • College textbooks
  • Magazines
  • Children’s books
  • Cookbooks

Depending on the type of book you sell, you may be able to double-dip into different categories. For example, if you sell a book about gardening, it could also appear in the “Home, Garden, and Tools” category.

Note: Remember, your products should only target categories that are sensical—categorizing painting supplies under “Electronics” won’t cut it. But if your product could logically fall into any of these four heavily trafficked categories, you can capitalize on the opportunity.

How to Change an Amazon Product Category

If you have a product that could be recategorized, you’re probably wondering how to change an Amazon product’s category. 

Changing the category is a relatively simple process; you can visit Amazon Seller Central for a full rundown on the steps. But to quickly summarize, all you need to do is to change the category listed in a product’s “Type Keyword” column.

Take Advantage of Amazon’s Browse Tree

We’ve mentioned a few times how certain products may fit into multiple different categories. But how can you target multiple categories on a single product? 

Unfortunately, you can’t control this—sellers are only allowed to include one Amazon category for each product. However, you can still target multiple categories with one product; you just have to trust Amazon’s Browse Tree Guides.

Browse Tree Guides is Amazon’s program that allows a single product to show up in different relevant categories. This algorithm uses a product’s browsing and purchase history to retarget products into other categories.

For example, a gardening hat may have a primary category of “Clothing, Accessories, and Shoes.” However, it may also appear in “Home, Garden, and Tools” if it is frequently bought with other gardening supplies. 

Appeal to Add a Browse Node

Products are targeted to categories using browse nodes (little pieces of code), which help specify the product to its specific category.

If you feel that one of your products can logically fit into multiple categories, you can contact Seller Support and request that the catalog team add an additional browse node to your product. You will have to make your case with a strong argument, but this is a way you can better control which categories can apply to your product.

Get Your Categories in Line

You want to be sure your products are in the right category. That way, you can build a positive user experience and attract more leads and sales. 
To ensure your products are classified the way they should be, reach out to Buy Box Experts. We’ll audit your Amazon business for free and tell you exactly what you can do to optimize the Amazon categories you target.

Rachel Libby
Rachel Libby

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Chattanooga, USA - November 15, 2011: A stack of several Amazon.com packages on white background.

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