Amazon BSR (Best Sellers Rank): This Is How It Works

what is amazon BSR (best sellers rank)

Selling your products on Amazon can be a great idea for many business owners. The site is known for having everything a consumer could possibly want, as well as a few thousand things that you didn’t know you needed until you saw it in a related Amazon search! As one of the most highly-trafficked shopping sites on the internet today, getting a good foothold on Amazon can mean significant profit for your business.

About Amazon BSR

There’s just one thing: understanding how everything works on Amazon. For example, how do you know if your product is selling as well as it should? For that matter, how do you know how Amazon users are finding your product in the first place? 

Amazon is a very big site with many great features. One of these is the BSR, or Best Sellers Rank. Keeping your eye on this number can help you understand your product’s relevancy, but there’s a bit more to it than that. This is how it works.

What Does the Amazon Best Sellers Rank Entail?

Chances are very good that you’ve noticed the best sellers rank, or BSR in your own searches through Amazon. Chances are equally good that you’ve used the BSR to help you decide which product to purchase.

For nearly every product offered on Amazon, you’ll see an informational box somewhere within the product description and information that shares a basic review score, such as “4.5 out 5 stars”, as well as the date the product first became available and its BSR.

In many cases, you’ll see several different ratings. For example, a pressure cooker may say it’s #203 in Kitchen & Dining, and #2 in Electric Pressure Cookers.

amazon BSR in action

So what does that mean? Does that mean it’s a good product or a bad product? And what is the key takeaway for the seller? 

Essentially, a lower BSR means higher sales. Though this number is updated hourly, it’s calculated using historical sales as well. So while a pressure cooker may have sold 5 units all day, but drops to 1 unit an hour after all of the shoppers in a key demographic have gone to bed, it won’t automatically plummet to BSR purgatory.

Other things that factor into a product’s BSR are price changes, promotions, and how other items in those categories are currently selling. 

Does a Good BSR Mean More Organic Traffic?

Your product’s best seller rank doesn’t necessarily mean it’s coming up first on the SERPs. Amazon’s algorithm brings up search results based on the product’s relevance to the search term entered.

However, products that sell well, receive a little “Best Seller” flag in the product description. Clicking on any product will also reveal the BSR, as you scroll through the product information to learn more.

this is how a best seller product appears on amazon search results

Customers tend to gravitate towards products that are best sellers. If something sells well, then chances are good that it’s a really good product, right? In most cases, yes, but bear in mind that customers will still look at other factors before making a final decision.

For example, if the customer reviews that appear directly below that BSR are unfavorable, it might not matter if your product is a #1 Best Seller in every category it qualifies for: a bad deal is a bad deal, and customers will stay away.

How To Improve a Product’s Amazon BSR?

Here’s where you have the opportunity to pull that Amazon search ranking and best sellers rank together.

The best way to ensure your product sells well is to make sure they see it. That means including the right keywords in the description, and using titles that describe your product perfectly.

Ever wonder why the product titles are so long? Because Amazon sellers want to ensure that their products are very searchable. This is one instance in which keyword stuffing is actually encouraged. Something like:

GE 3-Outlet Power Strip, 15 ft Extension Cord, 2 Prong, 16 Gauge, Twist-to-Close Safety Outlet Covers, Indoor Rated, Perfect for Home, Office or Kitchen, UL Listed, White, 51962

May seem like overkill, but it doesn’t take a keyword specialist to see how many searches will turn up this particular product.

Additionally, make sure the listing itself is solid. Provide descriptions that actually sell the product, with clear, easy-to-understand pictures, FAQs that really answer user questions, and videos of your product in use wherever possible.

Keep it Competitive

Furthermore, keep your product competitive. For sellers, the BSR is a great – and a completely ethical – way to keep tabs on your competition. For every category in which your product has a best sellers rank, look at the products above and below it. Are similar products priced more or less? What features do they have that yours do not, and vice versa? What changes can you make to your listing that would make it as attractive as these other options?

In some cases, they may have nothing to do with your product, since some of the categories are very broad. “Kitchen & Dining”, for example, doesn’t just include appliances, but rather everything from meat thermometers to dishcloths. That doesn’t mean there’s nothing to learn from this information, however. What are the other products doing in their listing that you can implement to gain more organic traffic for your product?

The Truth Behind Amazon BSR Ranking

It may seem that the Amazon best sellers rank is somewhat of an arbitrary number. After all, you can sell 2,000 books in a month and never break into the Top Ten ranking for a particular category, or you can sell a few hundred and maintain a #1 ranking for several days in a row.

By the way, if you want to learn how to self-publish a book on Amazon, check out this article.

The BSR is not a definitive ranking of how many sales you’re making, but rather the number of sales in relation to other similar products. Does that mean you shouldn’t be happy when your product ranks #1? Of course you should be thrilled!

But if your product hasn’t been ranking highly, take this as an opportunity to check out what’s going on with other similar products, and refine your listings. Make sure you’re using keywords to be as specific as possible, along with clear pictures, videos, and descriptions. The best thing you can do to attract customers in the highly competitive world of Amazon is be abundantly transparent, which will win the trust of buyers everywhere.



Teachingbiz provides internet marketing services and education to digital entrepreneurs and marketers who want to learn how to build and scale their businesses.

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