ACOS Amazon – What Does ACOS Mean & How to Calculate It


The Average Amazon Advertising Cost of Sales (ACoS) refers to the ratio of advertising spend to sales generated on the Amazon platform. It is a key metric used by sellers and advertisers to measure the effectiveness and efficiency of their advertising campaigns.

What is the Average Amazon ACoS?

The average ACoS on Amazon varies significantly across industries, product categories, and individual campaigns. Generally, what is considered a "good" ACoS can differ based on factors like product margins, competition, and advertising goals. However, as a benchmark, many sellers aim for an ACoS below 30%. This figure ensures a healthy balance between ad spend and revenue generation.

However, optimal ACoS can differ based on business objectives. For instance, sellers launching new products might accept a higher ACoS initially to increase visibility and sales momentum.

What is a Good ACoS: Determining a Good Average Amazon ACoS

There is no one-size-fits-all "good" ACoS for brands. While starting with a target range of 15-30% is a good rule of thumb for beginners, your ideal ACoS will depend on factors such as profit margin, advertising budget, keyword competition, and seasonality. It's crucial to establish specific ACoS goals that align with your business objectives and marketing strategies.

How to Calculate ACOS?

Calculating ACOS is essential for marketers and advertisers to evaluate campaign performance and optimize their strategies for better ROI (Return on Investment). Here's a step-by-step guide on how to calculate ACOS:

ACOS Formula:

ACOS formula

Steps to Calculate ACOS:

  • Gather Data: Obtain the necessary data for the specific period you want to analyze. You'll need the total advertising spend and the sales generated from the campaign during that period.
  • Calculate Advertising Spend: Sum up all the costs associated with advertising during the chosen timeframe. This includes expenses such as ad placement costs, campaign management fees, and any other related expenditures.
  • Determine Sales Generated: Identify the total sales attributed to the advertising campaign in the same timeframe. Ensure these sales are directly linked or attributed to the advertising efforts being analyzed.
  • Apply the Formula: Use the gathered data in the ACOS formula. Divide the advertising spend by the sales and multiply the result by 100 to express it as a percentage.
  • Interpret the Result: A lower ACOS typically indicates better efficiency, as it signifies that less advertising money is being spent to generate a sale. Conversely, a higher ACOS implies that a larger proportion of sales revenue is used for advertising costs.

Example Calculation:

Suppose an advertiser spent $500 on a campaign that generated $2,500 in sales.

An example of ACOS calculation

In this scenario, the ACOS for the campaign is 20%. This means that for every dollar spent on advertising, $5 in sales was generated.

Importance of ACOS:

  • Performance Measurement: ACOS helps in assessing the efficiency and profitability of advertising campaigns.
  • Optimization: By analyzing ACOS, advertisers can make informed decisions to optimize campaigns for better performance and cost-effectiveness.
  • Budget Allocation: Understanding ACOS assists in allocating advertising budgets more effectively, directing resources towards profitable campaigns.

Factors Influencing Your ACoS

Here are some key factors that influence ACoS:

Target Audience and Keywords

Relevance: Targeting the right audience with relevant keywords is essential. Using highly relevant keywords ensures that your ads are shown to people actively looking for your products or services, potentially leading to higher conversion rates and lower ACoS.

Ad Relevance and Quality

Ad Quality Score: Platforms like Google Ads and Facebook evaluate ad quality and relevance. Higher-quality ads often result in better placement and lower costs per click (CPC), which can positively impact ACoS.

Bidding Strategy

Bid Amount: The bid set for each ad influences its visibility. Strategic bidding can impact the ad's position and cost. Employing an optimal bidding strategy aligned with campaign goals is crucial to manage ACoS effectively.

Product Pricing and Profit Margins

Product Price: The cost of the advertised product in relation to the competition and consumer expectations affects ACoS. Higher-priced products might have higher ACoS but could still be profitable if the profit margins allow it.

Seasonality and Trends

Market Trends: Seasonal fluctuations, trends, or events can impact consumer behavior and competition. Adjusting advertising strategies to accommodate these changes can influence ACoS positively or negatively.

Campaign Structure and Optimization

Campaign Settings: The structure and settings of ad campaigns, such as targeting options, ad scheduling, and ad formats, play a significant role in ACoS. Regularly optimizing campaigns based on performance data can help improve ACoS.

Conversion Rate

Conversion Optimization: Improving the website or landing page experience can positively impact conversion rates, ultimately reducing ACoS. A higher conversion rate means more sales for the same advertising spend.

Competitive Landscape

Competitor Actions: The actions of competitors, including their ad spend, strategies, and market positioning, can affect ACoS. Understanding competitive movements helps in adjusting strategies for better ACoS.

Ad Placement and Device Targeting

Device Performance: The performance of ads on different devices (desktop, mobile, tablet) and various placements (search results, social media feeds, etc.) can impact ACoS. Optimizing for better-performing placements is essential.

Ad Copy and Creatives

Engaging Creatives: Compelling ad copies and visuals that resonate with the audience can improve click-through rates (CTR) and conversion rates, affecting ACoS positively.

Understanding and monitoring these factors while fine-tuning advertising strategies can help advertisers effectively manage and optimize their ACoS, leading to more cost-efficient and successful advertising campaigns.

The Average Amazon Advertising Cost of Sales (ACoS) depends on several key things that impact how effective and efficient ads are on the platform. By paying attention to these things and making changes when needed, advertisers can run ads that cost less and work better, improving their ACoS.

Setting Your Amazon ACoS Goals

Setting Amazon ACoS (Advertising Cost of Sales) goals is a critical step for sellers and advertisers looking to optimize their campaigns and maximize profitability on the Amazon platform. Establishing clear ACoS goals tailored to your business objectives is crucial. Here's a guide on how to set your Amazon ACoS goals:

Understand Your Business Objectives

  • Profitability Goals: Determine your profit margin and how much of the revenue you're willing to allocate towards advertising.
  • Market Share or Visibility: Decide if your primary aim is to increase brand visibility, gain market share, or drive sales for specific products.

Analyze Historical Performance

  • Review Past ACoS: Evaluate the historical ACoS of your campaigns to understand their performance. Identify which campaigns or products had lower ACoS and higher profitability.
  • Identify Trends: Look for patterns in seasonality, trends, or specific promotions that impacted ACoS positively or negatively.

Calculate Break-Even ACoS

  • Determine Break-Even Point: Calculate the ACoS at which your advertising spend equals the profit generated. This helps in understanding the maximum ACoS you can afford without losing money.

Consider Industry Benchmarks and Competition

Benchmark Analysis: Research industry benchmarks or similar product categories to understand average ACoS figures. This provides context for setting realistic goals.

Competitor Analysis: Analyze competitors' ACoS to gauge where you stand in the market and set competitive but achievable goals.

Set Realistic and Attainable Goals

  • Long-Term vs. Short-Term Goals: Set both short-term and long-term ACoS goals. Short-term goals could focus on optimizing individual campaigns, while long-term goals might involve overarching profitability targets.
  • Gradual Improvement: Aim for gradual improvements rather than drastic changes. Setting overly ambitious goals might lead to unrealistic expectations.

Adjust and Monitor Regularly

  • Flexibility: Be open to adjusting goals based on evolving market conditions, changes in Amazon's algorithms, or shifts in your business strategy.
  • Regular Monitoring: Continuously monitor campaign performance and ACoS metrics. Use this data to make informed adjustments to your goals and strategies.

Test and Iterate

  • Experimentation: Conduct A/B tests, try different ad formats, adjust keywords, or test various bidding strategies to find the most effective approach for achieving your ACoS goals.

Example Scenario:

Suppose your profit margin allows for a 20% ACoS and historical data shows an average ACoS of 25%. Your goal could be to gradually reduce ACoS by optimizing campaigns, targeting higher-converting keywords, or refining ad creatives to achieve a 20% ACoS without compromising profitability.

Lowering Your ACoS - 10 Tips to Lower your ACoS

Lowering your ACoS (Advertising Cost of Sales) is crucial for improving the efficiency and profitability of your advertising campaigns. Achieving a lower ACoS means optimizing your ad spend to generate more sales while minimizing advertising costs. Here are some actionable tips to help you lower your ACoS:

1. Target Relevant Keywords and Audiences

Keyword Optimization: Focus on high-converting keywords relevant to your product or service. Use keyword research tools to identify and target keywords with lower competition and higher intent.

Refine Audience Targeting: Narrow down your audience parameters to reach more specific and relevant demographics. Tailoring your ads to the right audience reduces wasted ad spend.

2. Optimize Ad Creatives and Copy

Compelling Ad Copies: Craft engaging ad copies that highlight unique selling points, benefits, and solutions your product offers. Experiment with different ad creatives to identify what resonates best with your audience.

3. Improve Landing Page Experience

Enhance User Experience: Ensure your landing pages are optimized for conversions. A seamless and relevant landing page experience increases the likelihood of converting clicks into sales, positively impacting ACoS.

4. Regularly Review and Refine Campaigns

Continuous Optimization: Monitor campaign performance regularly. Adjust bidding strategies, pause underperforming keywords or ads, and allocate more budget to top-performing ones.

5. Use Negative Keywords

Filter Irrelevant Traffic: Utilize negative keywords to exclude search terms that aren't relevant to your product. This prevents your ads from appearing for irrelevant searches, reducing wasted ad spend.

6. Implement Bid Adjustments

Bid Optimization: Adjust bids based on the performance of keywords, devices, or locations. Increase bids for high-converting keywords or decrease bids for those with high costs and low returns.

7. Take Advantage of Ad Formats and Features

Explore Different Ad Formats: Test various ad formats available on the platform, such as video ads, sponsored products, or display ads. Some formats might perform better for your product or audience.

8. Leverage Remarketing and Retargeting

Target Interested Users: Implement remarketing strategies to target users who previously interacted with your brand but didn't convert. Remind them about your product to increase the chances of conversion.

9. Monitor Competitor Strategies

Competitive Analysis: Keep an eye on your competitors' advertising strategies. Learn from their successes or failures to refine your own campaigns and stay competitive.

10. Test, Learn, and Iterate

A/B Testing: Continuously test different elements of your campaigns—ad copies, images, targeting options—to identify what works best. Use data-driven insights to make informed decisions and iterate for improvement.


Understanding and optimizing your average ACoS on Amazon is essential for maximizing your advertising performance and profitability on the platform. By continually monitoring your ACoS, adjusting your strategies, and implementing proven optimization techniques, you can achieve a lower ACoS and improve the efficiency and profitability of your advertising campaigns. Remember, there is no one-size-fits-all approach, and your ACoS goals should align with your unique business objectives. With the right strategies and expert guidance, you can unlock the full potential of your Amazon advertising campaigns and drive sustainable success on the platform.  

Contact Blue Wheel, the leading Amazon advertising agency, to receive personalized support and take your advertising efforts to new heights.

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