Prioritizing PPC: The Different Options Available to Amazon Sellers

Amazon PPC is not everyone’s cup of tea, we get it. It is, however, every Amazon seller’s oxygen tank. 

Amazon PPC is CRUCIAL to the success of any online business. Running a smoothly operated armada of advertising campaigns takes time to learn and it’s not something to be taken lightly. 

Many sellers constantly wonder – “How can I delegate or outsource my Amazon PPC campaign so I don’t have to do it anymore?”

It’s a valid question. Between keyword research, marketing your brand, and keeping your financials in order, ad campaigns too often take a back seat. Be sure to read below, and then when you are ready, check out Helium 10’s Amazon advertising platform!

Why is PPC Worth the Trouble?

Profit on Amazon requires two very important ingredients: traffic and conversions

Conversions (sales) primarily hinge on how strong your product listing is constructed. Your traffic (how many shoppers are viewing your listing) is driven by PPC. It’s 50% of your success on Amazon and it deserves your attention.

Before I cover the different options for moving forward with Amazon advertising – none of this will work if you don’t have a strong understanding of Amazon PPC. You can’t accurately judge the success (or failure) of something without first understanding the fundamentals.

  • Get the rundown on all basic Amazon advertising terminology, costs, and relevant metrics to know with this Amazon PPC 101 walkthrough
  • To learn more about Adtomic, a brand new way to manage and automate your Amazon PPC campaign, check out this PPC roundtable discussion

So, What Are Your Options for Handling PPC?

◦ Do it yourself

◦ Hire a VA (Virtual Assistant) who knows how to do it

◦ Hire a VA that you can train to do it

◦ You + a software

◦ A VA + a software

◦ An agency 

◦ A full-time, expert employee 


Let’s cover each one.

Do it Yourself 

Potential Challenges

  • Going at it alone means you must teach yourself all the ins and outs of PPC
  • Be ready to carve out a ton of time for this – it will take many hours to tackle the fundamentals
  • You might not like doing it!

Potential Wins

  • You are the only person that truly cares a lot about your account – the control (and fate) of your Amazon advertising campaigns remains in your hands
  • No third-party involvement means you don’t have to play the “who can I trust vs. who is scamming me” game
  • This is the cheapest option

Hire a VA (Virtual Assistant) Who Knows How to do it

Potential Challenges

  • You run the risk of the VA, in reality, not knowing what they’re doing (You may hire a VA that seems qualified only to find out you are never going to get your money’s worth)
  • VAs are prone to making mistakes you may be able to avoid
  • VAs need a certain level of management which costs time (Remember, time is still a valuable currency!)

Potential Wins

  • Relatively cheap ~ $600-1000/month 
  • VAs can typically do the work required of them, as long as you remain an attentive manager

Hire a VA That You Will Train

Potential Challenges

  • Training a VA will take a lot of time out of your schedule
  • Your knowledge of PPC must be rock-solid to train someone else
  • Again, VAs can make mistakes (we’re all human)
  • Needs management, post-training, which costs time

Potential Wins

  • Relatively cheap ~ $400-600/month

You + a Software (like Adtomic)

Potential Challenges

  • You must already understand the basic PPC workflow
  • You may not catch glitches if the software is doing most of the heavy lifting for you 
  • Has to be monitored – you cannot “set it and forget it” (if it was this easy, we’d all be millionaires)

Potential Wins

  • Saves a lot of time
  • Can be automated and optimized with relative ease if you have the right tools 
  • Adtomic by Helium 10 is a dedicated Amazon advertising platform specifically designed for Amazon FBA sellers wanting a “big picture” data dashboard and built-in AI automation to effectively coach you through the entire process
  • Very cheap ~ $100/month

VA + a Software

Potential Challenges

  • VA will need training in PPC and the software of your choosing
  • VA will require management which costs time 

Potential Wins

  • Slightly more reliable than a VA alone since there is an automated component to the process (this helps cut down on human errors)
  • Relatively cheap ~ $500-$800/month

An Agency

Potential Challenges

  • You have to vet many agencies to find the right one 
  • You need to clearly define the scope of work, expectations (and deliverables), and how to measure success (these are musts) 
  • You need to understand enough about PPC to keep them accountable (catching mistakes and shortcuts is just as important as recognizing success)
  • You will need to stay on top of the agency to make sure you’re in the loop (Remember, you need to be attentive and make sure you’re always getting the most accurate analytics)
  • Relatively expensive ~ $1000-$3000/month

Potential Wins

  • There’s certainly the chance that an experienced and trustworthy agency can make your Amazon PPC ad campaigns soar, with minimal effort on your end

A Full-Time Expert Employee

Potential Challenges

  • The most expensive solution ~ $5000-10,000/month (you get what you pay for!)

Potential Wins

  • Full-time experts typically bring a wealth of knowledge 
  • They will care about your account more than a VA or agency (personalized attention!)
  • Often the most growth potential here
  • Will need some management but not nearly as much as the options above

Decisions, Decisions

At the end of the day, every single one of these options comes with a degree of risk. This is e-commerce and nothing is ever a certainty. The above list serves as a way to evaluate these uncertainties in an effort to accomplish the one thing all Amazon sellers strive to do: eliminate the guesswork.

After going through all of these options, think about what stage your business is in, how flexible your budget is, and how much risk you’re willing to take. 

Measure these pro/con lists against a list of your unique priorities, then see how they align!

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