Top 5 Things You Need to Know about Amazon Sales Rank

Everyday, I hear from Profit Bandit users who are confused by Sales Rank. Today is the first in a series of posts on Sales Rank and we’re going to start with the 5 most important things that you need to know about Amazon Sales Rank.

1. Sales Rank Changes Over Time

We’ve talked about this before, but in the absence of sales, an item’s Sales Rank gets worse. Take a look at this screenshot from CamelCamelCamel.

CamelCamelCamel Sales Rank

Note how the sales rank slowly degrades until a sale is made and the rank shoots back up! You can also see that the slope of the line is not constant. Sales Rank degrades quickly at first and then the rate of decay slows.

2. Current Sales Rank CAN’T Tell You How Well an Item is Selling

Because of the huge swings that sales rank can undergo (see the previous graph), looking at a single data point can’t tell you how well an item is selling. A low sales rank (one that is close to 1), can trick you into thinking an item is a longtime popular seller, when actually, that item was just sold.

To make accurate guesses about how fast an item is selling, you need to look at multiple data points and see how an item’s sales rank trends over time.

3.  Don’t Ignore Items with Poor Sales Ranks

Long tail items can be great opportunities for big profits! The biggest caveat, however, is to avoid items with many competing offers. If an item sells once every few months, or even once a year, if you don’t have the buy box at the right time, you could be out of luck and stuck holding a long tail item even longer than you expected.

4. Consider Product Reviews in Conjunction with Sales Rank

When you’re not sure about the accuracy of a single sales rank, look at the product’s reviews. The more product reviews an item has, the more likely the sales rank is to be accurate. If an item has a good sales rank but no product reviews, it’s likely that the sales rank is the temporary result of a sale. You can also check in-stock quantity. If sellers have many items in stock, it’s more likely that the item is not a long-tail item with infrequent sales.

5. Use Sponsored Product Ads

Amazon’s Sponsored Product ads are advertisements for your products that appear on Amazon on product pages of similar items that are more popular than your items. If your items have a poor sales rank, these ads can be a good opportunity to improve your sales on products that have been stagnating.



  1. great idea, I use seller rank to decision which products have sale already. It’s help me as amazon’s indicator.

  2. Thanks for sharing your knowledge with us. So glad I found this resource, I think it might just be the push I need to start my own business with Amazon

  3. Sougata Mondal

    Great opportunities for lower products one!

  4. Thanks for the top 5 things. All are very interesting and useful about Amazon sales rank.

  5. Anna

    Thanks for the info. Super clear and a great tool.

  6. When I am doing any changes in product pages from inventory panel, our product seller rank is increasing despite decreasing frequently. Can someone tell me, why it’s happening? And how to overcome it?

    You can see our products page on Amazon by searching “RD Mounts”.

  7. Elena

    Hello Mithvin, thank you for your question. I’m afraid a lot of sellers complain about the same problem, however there’s no 100% accurate answer to it because of how secret search algorithms are in general. Yes, any change in product details or item picture initially triggers a drop in page visibility (page rank), which attracts an implicit drop in sales (so a raise in SR). However, if the change works in your benefit as intended, the page rank eventually goes back to what it was, and SR drops again. Sorry there’s no insights to share here.

  8. it was an awesome article and I appriciate your efforts

Trackbacks for this post

  1. Confused about Amazon Best Sellers Rank? This will help.
  2. SellerEngine Blog
  3. Let Sales Rank Dictate Margin | SCOE
  4. Amazon Sales Rank | Making dentistry simple

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.