Why You Should Be Using Amazon's A+ Content On Your Product Listings
With brick and mortar stores becoming more of a rarity, most consumers head to the internet to complete their purchases, and the place they are likely to head to first is Amazon. With nearly 2 million small and medium sized businesses worldwide selling on Amazon, you need to make sure that your product listings stands out from the rest.
You need to convince potential customers that your products and service is better than all the others you are competing with, and the easiest way to boost your listings is by utilising A+ Content.
What is A+ Content?
A+ Content, formerly known as Enhanced Brand Content (EBC) allows vendors and sellers to create visually appealing and engaging product listings. Giving you more creativity when designing your product listings, you can add more detailed descriptions, high quality images, comparison charts and brand stories. Without A+ Content, you are limited to a 2000 character product description with minimal formatting and no imagery (apart from the main product images). A+ Content allows you to create a clear brand, making the lisings look like they would on your own eCommerce site.
When shopping on Amazon, you are first greeted with a series of product images, the price, product name and a brief description. This is the standard content formatting that applies to all products that are listed on the site. But scroll further down the page, and you are likely to see a lot more information, often stylised to match the brand, and showcasing the products in more images, diagrams and detailed descriptions. It allows you to provide more information not only about the product, but also your brand, which can build trust from potential customers in your product and can lead to a high conversion rate.
If you were a customer, which of the following listings would you prefer to read and trust?
Who Can Use A+ Content? (Eligibility Requirements)
A+ Content is not available to everyone straight away, but to become eligible to use it should not take too long to achieve, as long as you have put in the work to properly register your brand and trademarks. You must have an active or pending trademark for the country you wish to enroll for. Once you are registered in Amazon Brand Registry, you can begin to use Basic A+ Content and Brand Story. This will allow you to add more images, better descriptions and interesting layouts to your product listing.
However, there is a better option that offers additional features such as larger images, interactive hotspots and image carousels. This is called Premium A+ Content, and is available to brands that meet further criteria. To access Premium A+ Content, all ASINs in your catalogue must contain a published Brand Story and you must have at least 15 A+ Content product submissions in “Approved” status within the last year. To see if you are eligible, you’ll see a banner letting you know it is available within the A+ Content Manager.
Why to Use A+ Content?
Stand out from the competition
When selling on Amazon, there is a good chance that you are competing with hundreds of other products just like yours, especially if you are reselling products that are produced elsewhere. So to ensure that customers pick yours over your competitors, you need to showcase your product in the most effective way.
You need to use your product listing real estate to your advantage. On each page there are carousels of similar products and recommended products, that can easily allow potential customers to leave your product and move to a competitor. If you dont use A+ content, these will be even more prominent, so you want to add as much as your own content to the page to increase your conversion rate.
Increase conversion rates
When competing on Amazon, you want to do anything you can to increase your conversion rate and climb ahead of your competitors. With customers not physically able to see a product, they want to know as much about the product as they can before adding it to their cart. This can not only help sell your product, but can have a lasting impact on your brand, increasing repeat customers. Also increasing your conversion rate means you’ll be getting more sales, this in turn will improve your Best Seller Rank thus translating to a better organic position too.
Provide more information to your customers
The more information you can provide to a customer, the more aware they are of what they are buying. As well as providing more evidence on why they should buy your product, it can also help reduce the number of returns from customers who did not fully understand what they were buying. This can also help reduce the amount of bad reviews you see on Amazon, where people will give it 1 star, not because it is a bad product, but because it wasnt what they thought they were ordering.
Tell your brand story
When selling similar products to hundreds of other brands on Amazon, you need to make the customer feel a connection with your brand that makes them choose you over your competitors.
Why did you start selling these products? What care do you put into your products and quality control? Are you aiming for sustainability or are you trying to be carbon neutral?
These are all things that could set you apart from your competitors and show to potential customers that you care about the products you sell, you are trustworthy and that they want to use your product above anyone else's.
A+ Content Modules (Basic)
If you are using the basic A+ Content for your product listings, then you will have some limitations that will apply when you come to design your content. Image sizes will be limited to 970x300 px as a maximum, you will only be able to use 5 modules at a time and there are only 14 modules to choose from.
Here we will look at the modules available on the basic plan, and provide an example of how a brand has used this to help sell their products.
Standard Single Image and Sidebar
This module provides four key features into one, making it a good option to use for one of your modules to provide plenty of information. Featuring a small image, a text block with headline, a specification box and a section to tell your brand story. This module is perfect for further expanding on your product as a whole, allowing to show it a lifestyle image, explain what the product is in a more formatted way and also provide the important specs that potential customers may need to know.
Standard 4 Images/Text Quadrant
This module works well to highlight features of your product, but due to the small image size, it would work best with things like icons or graphics. This could be things like being made out of recycled material, or how many years warranty it comes with. Due to the small images, the bulk of the information will be provided in text format.\
Standard Image with Text Overlay (Light or Dark)
Using a large image can instantly grab the shoppers attention, and with the bigger real estate, you can show your product in use making it perfect for lifestyle photography. The image size is limited to 970x300px making a fairly wide but shallow image, so you will need to make sure that you are using it to highlight the right features. As well as the image, there is also a small text box that can be located either side, allowing you to expand on what the image is showing, this could be a benefit or a feature of using the product. The text box is available in light and dark versions, meaning you can use this no matter the colours in your image.
Standard Single Image (Left or Right)
A fairly basic module, that allows you to combine a square image with a couple of paragraphs of text. This can be used to either highlight a feature of your product, show what your USP is or to introduce the shopper to your brand. The image size for this is 300x300 px (1:1).
Standard 4 Images & Text
Comprising four small square images and text with a heading, this module is perfect for showing off features of your product in more detail. The images are sized 220x220px, so are fairly small, but can work well for either close ups of your product or lifestyle images. This module is also perfect for a step by step guide, allowing you to break the process down into four clear stages.
Standard Comparison Chart
This module is great to either highlight why customers should be buying this product, or to up-sell them by showing that you sell other versions that are either better or have more features. This is shown in a chart with a number of your products listed with images and then comparing them to a series of criteria that you list, and highlighting which products meet them and how they differ.
Standard 4 Images & Highlight
This module is almost a combination of the 4 images and text module, and the single image and text module. This module displays a 300x300 px image with a headline and text box, along with four smaller images below. When one of the smaller images is selected, it will replace the main image and text box, allowing you to provide more information. This can work well for showing different angles of your product and highlighting certain features, as well as providing a step by step guide.
Standard Single Image and Spec Details
This module is fairly similar to the single image and sidebar module, replacing the brand section with more information around this specific product. This module allows you to organise the information into an easy to read specification list, as well as using paragraphs, along with a large image showing your product.
Standard 3 Images and Text
Like the module with 4 images and text, this module allows you to show more detailed or lifestyle images along with information related to it. However with this module having 3 images, it means that the images you can use are now larger, 300x300 px. This is a perfect module to highlight features of the product or USPs of your brand.
Premium A+ Content
By upgrading to Premium A+ Content, you can access improved versions of the Basic modules as well as some new features. Image sizes can now go up to 1464x600 px, and you can up to 7 modules on the detail page. And rather than the 14 Basic modules, you now have access to 19 Premium modules.
Here we will look at the modules available on the Premium plan, and provide an example of how a brand has used this to help sell their products.
Premium A+ Background Image with Text
An improvement on the basic version of this module, the image is full width, meaning you can fill more real estate on your page, use a higher quality image and grab the shoppers attention as they scroll. This module also features a text box with both a header and description allowing you to highlight a feature of your product.
Premium A+ Comparison Chart
Building on the basic comparison chart, this module has multiple layout options that make it easier to decipher the information and provide a more stylised appearance. As well as using the chart layout, there is an option which ultises larger images and a carousel to scroll through the products and compare them to the hero product.
Premium Single Image with Text
This is one of the more text heavy modules that allows you to go into detail about your product, whether this is the product as a whole or a certain feature. The module is split in two, allowing a large image and text formatted with a bold heading and space for multiple paragraphs of information.
Premium Dual Images with Text
If you are looking for more visuals rather than text, this module allows you to put two large images together to grab the shoppers attention. This is accompanied by a heading and text field allowing you to explain what the images are showing or representing. This is a great module to either highlight features or to show lifestyle images of your product in use.
Premium Four Images with Text
Similair to the basic version, this improves by allowing larger images and a cleaner appearance. Perfect for step by step guides, or to highlight the main features of your product.
Premium Full Image
To really grab the customers attention and show off your product, this full image allows you to use the full width of the screen, but with more depth than the banner image module. This works great for not only photos, but graphics that you have created that explain your product like infographics and diagrams.
Premium Full Video
If you really want to show how your product works, you can use the full video module. Like the full image module, this is full width and eye-catching, but rather than being a still image, you can create a video that will showcase the main features and sellings points of your product. This can help increase conversion rates by showing your product in use, enabling the customer to see what it will be like when they buy it, and answering potential questions they may have.
Premium video with text
If you want to use a video to sell your product, but also explain what is happening in the video, then this module could be perfect for you. Splitting the module in half, you can have a video player as well as a formatted text box to help deliver the information to the shopper.
Premium hotspots 1 & 2
This module allows you to use a large image, but highligh specific features on the product. By adding a number of ‘hotspots’ on top of the image, the customer can then click on these spots to open a text box providing information on this specific feature. This is especially good for tech products to highlight the specific functions and where they are located. There is a second hotspot option that adds a header and subfield above the image.
Premium Navigation / Regimen Carousel
This module uses a large image carousel to allow you to use up to 5 images with text box overlays to provide a large amount of information in one module. There are two versions of this module, with Navigation having buttons at the top that allows the user to click on them to jump to certain images on the carousel, and Regimen moving these buttons to the side.
Premium Single Image Carousel
Similair to the navigation carousel, however rather than having navigation buttons, this uses arrows to scroll through the images, and doesnt include a text overlay. This works well to show lifestyle images, or if you want to create your layout designs in other software and not rely on Amazon’s formatting.
This module allows you to answer the commonly asked questions that your customer may have. While Amazon has its own question and answers section, this will allow you to provide important information to customers, increasing conversion rate and reducing the number of returns from customers who do not fully understand what they have ordered.
Premium Video Image Carousel
This module turns the single image/video and text modules into a carousel, allowing you to have six separate image and text blocks, rather than having to use multiple modules. This is greate to showcase the main features of your products or to show the steps and stages that the customer will go through when using your product.
Premium Technical Specifications
This improved version of the specification table allows you to make the data clearer and easier to understand, with a more formatted design. Adding in a header and splitting across two columns makes it easier for the customer to find the important information they need.
So if you want to make sure that your products are producing a good conversion rate and standing out from your competitors, you need to be utilising A+ Content. This allows you to clearly get across your brand, what your product is and why customers should purchase from you. Selling on Amazon is extremely competitive, and if your product listings dont make reading the information easy to understand and attractive to your customers, they will easily click onto one of the recommendations instead.