Amazon Search Terms FAQs with August 2018 Update

On Amazon, we have the ability to add search terms that are hidden from buyers but

are indexed in search. This allows sellers to add other relevant keywords and improve their search placement. It is not mandatory but it certainly helps to find rank for additional keywords organically and it has gone through a lot of changes. At one time you could include 5k keywords and then it changed to 250 characters across 5 fields. Very recently, Amazon updated this from five fields to only 1 field with a limit of 250 bytes. We have pieced together this FAQ to give you bit more insight…

You can also find out full details on Amazon Help page here >>

1.What is the character limit?

Amazon limits the length of the search terms to less than 250 bytes. The search terms limit applies to newly-registered as well as existing ASINs.

What is byte vs characters?

A to Z are counted as 1 byte each along with Hyphens, Commas & Spaces count as 1 Byte.

Special Characters (eg. ä, ü, ö, ß, &, é) can count as 2 bytes and in some cases even more. Use to find out total bytes if you are dealing with non-English marketplaces.  

2.Is the limit same in DE, FR, IT and SP?


3.W hat is the best way to calculate character limit?

=len(A1) function in excel does a good job.

4. Does space and punctuation count?

Yes. Separate words with space but don’t use punctuation.

5. Previously there were 5 search term fields. How many are there now?

Just 1

6.Do we include misspellings?

No. Amazon already looks after this.

7. Is it ok to include competing brand names?

No. You could potentially be filed infringement case if you do so. Here’s one example of an infringement case filed due to this reason. Warning! Don’t take this lightly.


8. What are the best practices of using search terms?

– It isn’t necessary to duplicate keywords that are already within the content; it is better to use additional terms to generate a wider range of customer search hits.

– Use single word terms for example Gifts for the Bride Bridesmaid Gifts Candle Wedding Day Gift White Gorgeous Jar, then that is what customers must type. However, by listing these terms separately, you allow for more combinations, such as bridesmaid gift, wedding candle, and wedding day gift. It is best to experiment with these in a list of products to see the difference in sales.

 9. What about hyphens?

“non-slip bath mat” will have your product appear for “non-slip bath mat”, “non slip bath mat”, nonslip bath mat”

Usually it is a good practice to enter keywords in the way a customer searches, which would be without hyphens but if you have enough space, adding the hyphen won’t hurt.

It worth noting that Google does not treat hyphenated words differently.  See comments here >>


Online Seller UK delivers specialist public Amazon PPC and SEO Courses to help you rank your products better. Over the past 4 years, 100s of brands and startup sellers have attended our Amazon training courses including the international audience.

If you are not able to attend our public courses or looking for a bespoke course? We are happy to provide in-house, online training to you and your team.