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Amazon Beauty Advertising & PPC Trends - Unlocking Growth in the Beauty Market

Ahmed Sanda
May 30, 2024
May 31, 2024
Amazon Beauty Advertising PPC Beauty Trends

The beauty industry on Amazon is a dynamic and ever-evolving landscape, characterized by intense competition and discerning consumers. To flourish in this environment, brands must navigate a complex advertising ecosystem strategically, optimizing their campaigns for maximum impact and return on investment. This Threecolts report presents a data-driven, three-phase approach to Amazon advertising:

  • Springboard Launch with Sponsored Products (Q1-Q2)
  • Cement Growth with Sponsored Brands & Audience (Q2-Q3)
  • Mature & Amplify with Sponsored Display Contextual (Q4 and Beyond)

The report is tailored specifically for beauty brands and designed to maximize both budget efficiency and growth potential. For further insights on Amazon advertising strategies, check out our comprehensive guide on Everything You Need to Know About Amazon Sponsored Display.

Understanding the Beauty Market's Rhythms

Cost-Per-Click & Clickthrough Rate Trends in the Beauty Category

The beauty category on Amazon exhibits distinct seasonal patterns in advertising costs and engagement. By analyzing historical click-through rate (CTR) and cost-per-click (CPC) data, we've uncovered key insights that can inform your advertising strategy:

  1. Q4: The Peak Season Challenge: The fourth quarter, encompassing the holiday season, sees a surge in both CTR and CPC. This heightened activity is not solely due to increased shopping but also reflects intensified competition among brands vying for consumer attention. The average CPC increases by 54% in Q4 compared to the yearly average, indicating a more expensive advertising landscape. Consequently, new beauty product launches during this period might face challenges in gaining visibility and achieving cost-effective customer acquisition.
  2. Q1-Q2: The Opportunity Window: The first and second quarters present a more favorable environment for new entrants. CPCs decline by an average of 40% compared to Q4, while CTR remains relatively stable. This suggests a less saturated market with potentially lower customer acquisition costs, making it an opportune time to launch and promote new beauty products.

The Three-Phase Playbook

Leveraging key metrics like cost-per-click (CPC), click-through rate (CTR), and cost per thousand impressions (CPM), we scrutinized the most cost-effective ad types to drive traffic at different stages of a product’s lifecycle. Based on these insights, we propose a three-phase approach to Amazon advertising, designed to capitalize on the market's rhythms and maximize your brand's growth potential:

Beauty CTR, CPC, and CPM averages by PPC type

Phase 1: Initial Launch - Springboard with Sponsored Products (Q1-Q2)

Align your product launch with the lower CPCs typically observed in the first and second quarters. Sponsored Products, with their high CTR (0.61%) and relatively low CPC ($1.12), are the ideal tool for this initial phase. The economics and engagement dynamics of Sponsored Product ads allow you to run relatively cheap keyword tests to understand which targeting options will drive conversions.

By focusing on high-converting keywords and optimizing your product listings, you can attract a steady stream of targeted traffic and build a solid foundation for future growth.

Key Tactics:

  • Keyword Research: Identify high-intent keywords that align with your product and target audience.
  • Bid Optimization: Leverage the lower CPC environment to test different bidding strategies and find your optimal cost-per-acquisition.
  • Listing Optimization: Craft compelling product titles, descriptions, and images to maximize conversions.

Case Study: How sponsored ads can help increase sales for a small business | Amazon Ads

Phase 2: Growth - Cement with Sponsored Brand Ads & Sponsored Audience (Q2-Q3)

As your product gains traction on some keywords and brand awareness becomes increasingly important, it's time to solidify your prestige brand's presence and expand your customer base. This is where Sponsored Brand ads and Sponsored Display Audience come into play. While they have higher average CPCs than Sponsored Products, their potential for brand building and audience expansion outweighs the initial cost. Use the findings from your keyword traction tests with Sponsored Products to deploy Sponsored Brands on the best performing keywords. 

Key Tactics:

  • Brand Storytelling (Sponsored Brands): Leverage the high CTR (0.70%) of Sponsored Brands to showcase your brand story and multiple products, fostering loyalty and repeat purchases. Invest in compelling brand messaging and visuals that resonate with your target audience.
  • Retargeting & Lookalike Audiences (Sponsored Display Audience): Utilize Sponsored Display Audience to re-engage beauty shoppers who have previously shown interest in your products, and reach new audiences with similar characteristics to your existing customers.

Case Study: Spectrum Brands grows NTB sales by 917% | Amazon Ads

Phase 3: Maturity - Amplify with Sponsored Display Contextual (Q4 and Beyond)

As your brand matures and enters the competitive Q4 season, it's time to amplify your reach and maximize visibility. Sponsored Display Contextual ads, despite their higher CPC ($2.66), offer a unique opportunity to capture a broader audience through contextual targeting on relevant product detail pages. With the highest average CPC ($2.66), and CTR (0.75%) these ads can prove to be very expensive and ineffective if they are not deployed strategically. When used right, they present the highest potential for engagement and ultimately conversions, making them a valuable tool for scaling your campaigns.

Key Tactics:

  • Contextual Targeting: Strategically place your ads on product detail pages of complementary products to reach a wider audience and increase visibility.
  • Creative Optimization: Experiment with different ad creatives, such as lifestyle images and video ads, to capture attention and drive clicks.
  • Performance Monitoring: Continuously track your campaign performance, particularly focusing on which product pages drive the highest engagement and conversions.

Case Study: Using Sponsored Display to help engage a wide audience | Amazon Ads

Competitive Landscape: Navigating the Beauty Battleground

The beauty category on Amazon is fiercely competitive, with established brands and new entrants constantly vying for market share. To succeed, it's crucial to differentiate your brand and products. Understanding your competitors' strengths and weaknesses can help you identify opportunities to stand out.

Beauty Radar Chart of CPC,CTR, and CPM performance by PPC type

Key Considerations:

  • Competitor Analysis: Analyze your competitors' product listings, advertising strategies, and customer reviews to identify areas where you can outshine them.
  • Unique Selling Proposition (USP): Clearly articulate what sets your brand and products apart from the competition. Highlight your unique ingredients, benefits, or brand story.
  • Brand Building: Invest in creating a strong brand identity that resonates with your target audience. This includes developing a consistent visual aesthetic, crafting compelling messaging, and engaging with customers on social media.


The insights derived from the top beauty category data reveal a three-phase approach to Amazon advertising that can be applied across various product categories. By understanding the strengths of each ad type and strategically deploying them at different stages of your product lifecycle, you can maximize your impact while optimizing your budget.

Remember, continuous monitoring and optimization are crucial for long-term success. By tracking your campaign performance, experimenting with different ad formats and targeting options, and adapting your strategy based on data-driven insights, you can ensure your brand thrives in the competitive Amazon marketplace.

Ready to implement these strategies for your beauty brand on Amazon? Learn more about optimizing your advertising campaigns with our in-depth guide on the Three Colts blog: Best PPC Automation Software

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