Case Study N2

Stur Drinks Case Study – Using Amazon PPC Ads to Launch a Product to 4,815 Reviews

What could be better than USA Today featuring one of the clients you're managing Amazon PPC Ads for?

USA Today featuring two of your clients!

A few months ago, USA Today mentioned two of the brands that trust Search Scientists to manage their PPC: Elizabeth Mott and Stur Drinks.

The newspaper covered the importance of Amazon stores getting reviews. In the article, Stur Drinks' and Elizabeth Mott's campaign managers and company owner talk about how Amazon reviews contributed to their success stories.

The Virtuous Amazon Cycle:

Using PPC To Get More Sales, Which Leads to Higher Rankings (And Even More Sales)

So, what were USA Today's conclusions?

"Fifty-five percent of shoppers start their buying research on Amazon, a survey by marketing firm BloomReach found, and half of all shoppers say they rely primarily on Amazon for reviews, according to Market Track, an e-commerce analysis firm."

50% of all shoppers start on Amazon? With Amazon’s trajectory, you can assume this will only grow larger.

This rise in shoppers has caused a flood of competition from sellers. One of the very best ways to go toe-to-toe with your competition - and win - is to activate Amazon PPC Ads.

We've already shown you the power of bringing in more sales with Amazon Sponsored Products in our previous case study: How It Happened: Growing Amazon PPC Campaigns From 6-Figure To 7-Figure Monthly Revenue In 6 Months (Without Needing Black Friday).

The more sales, the more chances that your shoppers will leave a review. This leads to Amazon’s A9 Algorithm classifying your product as deserving a higher organic search ranking. A higher search rank means more visibility, which we all know means even more sales. It’s a virtuous cycle.

The Amazon PPC Ads cycle - the win-win-more situation

The Amazon PPC Ads cycle - the win-win-more situation

Of course, reviews can also be obtained organically. But make sure to add lots of patience and time to that recipe.

When you have a great product - why wait? Turn on Amazon PPC Ads

Amazon PPC Ads create the shortcut for your products to get to these kinds of results:

4,815 customer reviews for Stur Drinks

4,815 customer reviews
Amazon's Choice

The #1 Selling Drink Mix on Amazon

Stur Drinks is a great company with a great product. Born in 2012 in a crowded market, this family-run company started when Neel Premkumar created the naturally flavored water enhancers in his own kitchen. His drive? Helping his wife drink more water while pregnant with their twin girls.

In a Forbes interview about wellness startups, Neel talks about the power that Amazon has versus store-by-store selling: "(...) we started selling on Amazon.com, and our products took off immediately. We shared our story with customers online, and the customers saved our business. Today, 4 years after launching our brand, Stur is the #1 selling drink mix on Amazon, and is sold in over 10,000 stores nationwide."

Stur Drinks and Search Scientists -
How It Started

At Search Scientists, we speak with a lot of established businesses that are looking for two things:

  • Free up the organization from needing to spend hours inside paid traffic campaigns
  • Get a better return from their campaigns

These are the entrepreneurs who are most aware that time and speed cannot be obtained as a one-man show. That's why Stur Drinks decided it's time to outsource their Amazon PPC.

First touch point with Stur Drinks

First touch point through the Contact form

They came to Search Scientists looking for a better ACOS and an increase in sales volumes. They wanted to avoid the distraction of finding new customers and focus on the product and the sales processes themselves.

Wait, what’s ACOS?

As mentioned in the previous case study, ACOS is the “Ad Cost Over Sales.” Its calculation is exactly what it says it is: Ad Cost / Sales, and it’s represented as a percentage.

Calculating your target ACOS (ad cost over sales) is an important step to revisit periodically in your paid traffic marketing.

Ok, not sure how to calculate it?

True, it might seem complicated, but it's not. We have created a step-by-step model in this video on how to do this.

Smarter Amazon Campaign Structure = Better ACOS

The initial audit of Stur Drinks' account had the number one issue that 95% of Amazon accounts have - no clear structure for their campaigns.​

And what's a good campaign structure?

We've explained this in the previous blog posts, but the harder you practice, the luckier you get, right? The best outcome for your campaigns is when they're split into Auto and Manual ones.

The Auto campaigns are exploring the product listing and deciding the keywords for you. The Manual campaigns contain the best converting terms from the Auto campaigns.

Controlling the campaign structure means:

  • More profitable sales volume [bid more on best keywords]
  • Better ACOS [bid less on lower-converting keywords]

For Stur, the Search Scientists team went from this to this:

Initially:

screenshot-drive.google.com-2017-08-04-16-05-21

Currently:

Screen Shot 2017-09-07 at 14.56.29

Improve Your Return With Keyword Management

You probably know this scenario: you're so excited... you’re going on vacation soon! You take a look at Rome's weather forecast and maaan!, it’s going to rain 4 days out of 7 during your trip. It’s too late to cancel your tickets. But a little rain won't hurt you. So you open up Amazon and search for "waterproof jackets." First results - "waterproof backpacks." Hmm, not what you were looking for.

After campaign structure, bad search term management is the most commonly made mistake in Amazon PPC campaigns. And it was happening to Stur Drinks, too.

Stur Drinks account - search term management

Irrelevant terms are the quickest way for losing money and for a low ROI.

As soon as we took over the Stur Drinks Amazon account, we started the meticulous work of cleaning out the poor performing terms and adding them as negatives.  

Dealing with Amazon’s Data Graveyard

In Amazon Seller Central, you actually cannot view old data. 

Neither could Stur.

screenshot-drive.google.com-2017-08-04-17-17-59

That means you cannot go back and look at what happened with your sales on Black Friday, on Christmas, or on International Doughnut Day (yum!).

Bummer!   

To combat this, you can schedule Campaign Performance reports that will run on a periodical basis. You'll be able to view the performance history of your advertising campaigns for the past 60 days.

Scaling Up and Pushing Things Forward

Immediately after taking over Stur Drinks' Amazon campaigns, the Search Scientists team cut the ACOS by half and increased the revenue by 50%. Read on to see the exact numbers.

In fact, the average revenue is currently two and a half times larger than the average revenue before Search Scientists. Who doesn't like some good looking graphs like these?

ACOS dropped significantly...

ACOS dropped significantly...

...while the revenue increased month over month

...while the revenue increased month over month

A nice start is great, and good communication and feedback are always welcome.

Kyle Pollack, Stur Drinks' Brand Manager, and the Search Scientists team had a good communication from Day 1.   

screenshot-newtab-2017-08-10-17-20-50

Thank you, Kyle. More good work from Search Scientists, to be continued!

A strong relationship is built on a continuous back and forth feedback and a clear communication of goals. Months later, the enthusiasm was still there.

Kyle's email about Search Scientists

Months later, we still got it

"Since we started, you guys have grown our sales every month. So it's been awesome and I think that for companies in that situation it just makes perfect sense to go from really not knowing what they're doing, to a professional setup."

Stur Drinks' Amazon Advertising Account After 8 Months With Search Scientists

+ %
Increase in
Reviews
- %
Better ACOS (ad cost over sales)
+ %
Increase in
Revenue

The Search Scientists' Winning Formula

You've heard this from us before, the chance that we’ll be unable to improve your campaigns’ performance is less than 2%. No bragging here, just tons of experience.

Having results in the first 30 days was not a… well... first for us with Stur Drinks. We've done this by:

  • Having a customized plan of action from the beginning, as we're doing with every client
  • Expanding the campaigns in Seller Central
  • Rolling out Amazon Marketing Services campaigns to increase the volumes
  • Optimizing bids to make sure we are hitting the target
  • Going through the campaigns' history and pulling out negative keywords
  • Looking for high ACOS keywords and optimizing them
  • Rolling out Automatic campaigns for each product
    • We've talked about the Amazon PPC 1-2 Punch in the previous case study, too -  the Automatic Campaigns target customers in a broader way than the Manual Campaigns. Plus, they are a good source of negative and positive keywords to add to the Manual campaigns.
  • Working on the Amazon Sponsored Products account structure
  • Expanding on matching types
  • Improving the Amazon campaigns' reporting structure
  • Last, but not least, by effective communication

Did someone say reviews?

Search Scientists' turn to get reviewed:

No doubt about it, Stur Drinks know how to play their Amazon game.

(Cheesy moment alert) That's why we're proud we've joined them on this journey.

When at the end of the day our clients feel they made a good decision by getting us to help grow their business, our mission is accomplished.      

Screen Shot 2017-07-31 at 17.25.46

Kyle Pollack likes Search Scientists
And he's not the only one. See more reviews here

The Growth Must Go On

The five-star reviews continues to flow for the Stur Drinks products.

Stur Drinks 5 star reviews

The family-run company that is passionate about better health has been helped by the Scientists-run company passionate about better PPC.

 

Yes, Amazon Advertising Is Hard. But We Know All The Tricks To Master It.

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