Over the past few months, I've really been noticing Category and Automatic Targeting Campaigns focusing a lot of their budgets on showing my Ads (for paid books) on the product pages of free books, that are moderately relevant to the book that I'm advertising.
What this can mean is that your Ad will have tens of thousands, if not hundreds of thousands, of impressions on the product page of a book that becomes free for a few days (or is permafree), and can drive a tonne of clicks to your book.
This all sounds great on the surface, but from my experience lately, you will end up being severely disappointed and have little to nothing to show for it - apart from a potentially big Amazon Ads bill!
I have found that advertising a paid book on the product page of a free book rarely converts well into orders and/or page reads.
If you're advertising a free book and your campaigns are targeting the ASINs of other free books, then you may not have the poor conversion issue you'll experience when advertising a paid book.
The biggest problem I've come across with this scenario, is that in Automatic and Category targeting campaigns, these free books that are being targeted are sucking up 95% of the impressions of a campaign and with it, often, most of the budget.
This leaves very little budget to position your books anywhere else, therefore reducing the sole purpose of these campaigns, discovery, to practically nothing.
So, what should you do to stop these little bleeders spending your money and sucking up most of the impressions within a campaign?
When I identify this situation, I immediately add these free books as a negative target to stop the campaign spending money on it.
And, if I notice it happening a lot in a particular category I'm targeting, I'll create a new Ad Group targeting that same category, using the Refine targeting option to eliminate all free books in that category from being targeted.
If the free book is converting well for you, then by all means don't negate it, but do keep an eye on it and make sure it doesn't run away with your budget.
Watch out! You have been warned!
To Your Success