How Does the Amazon Buy Box Algorithm Work?

We have explained lots of different factors to win the buy box in 2018, but one thing is clear that there are no Amazon buy box algorithm hacks. Neither do any set rules or checklist available that you follow to guarantee your buy box win every time. Amazon buy box formula is a complex algorithm that takes into account several things to determine the buy box winner.


Purpose behind the Amazon Buy Box Formula?

Amazon buy box formula is designed to deliver the best value for money to the Amazon’s customers. It determines the best offer/seller that has the combination of low price, fast free shipping, less returns and high seller performance.

This buy box algorithm mainly works to achieve Amazon’s goal to offer the best possible shopping experience to their customers. Therefore it seems too good to be true that Amazon buy box formula only takes price into account to allocate the buy box. We have seen several gurus and experts claiming that the low price offer lands in the buy box most of the times. Amazon price trends of thousands of products that we track regularly show that they are simply ignoring all other important factors.

It is highly unlikely to know the exact buy box algorithm specially being outside of the core development team of Amazon. All I can explain to the best of my knowledge and experience is the following:


How the Amazon Buy Box Algorithm Works?

Its not very difficult to understand how Amazon buy box algorithm works as most of the sellers already know the factors that are vital for winning the buy box. When a visitor loads product detail page, during those milliseconds interval algorithm kicks in to predict the seller that offers the most value to the customer. It does it by breaking down the eligible sellers’ performance into several factors. Then it evaluates them by comparing with the other sellers’ performance factors.

The weights assigned to each performance evaluation factor can change from product-to-product or a category-to-category. The algorithm is so smart that even if a seller losing buy box to a competitor on the product “A” that seller could win the buy box from the same competitor on the product “B”. So, the seller that can offer best value for the specific product will win the buy box.

Here’s a quick example for easy understanding, consider that a product for which on time shipping matters the most such as a birthday card. For such product shipping time may have more weight than other variables. In this case, a seller that offers one day shipping will clearly have advantage on the other who ships in two days. For another product such as bathroom accessories, shipping time may have less impact and low price have more impact on the algorithm’s evaluation procedure. So keep the type of your product in mind while listing different options for the buyer.

Amazon Buy Box Eligibility

To be able to win the buy box you have to be buy box eligible. That being said, you need to be FBA seller or at least professional seller on Amazon. After that you also need to check if your product is eligible for buy box. That’s not all there are also several performance factors that are taken into account by the Amazon buy box formula.

All factors change frequently so does the buy box winner. In order to win the buy box make sure that all the performance factors have high score for the algorithm. We have discussed all the factors in this detailed guide on Amazon buy box.


I hope you have learned about the Amazon buy box algorithm and how it works. Main take away for the sellers here is to put their efforts for improving all the performance indicators as much as they can. Avoid the common misconception of lowering the price to win the buy box. This will not only start the price war but also lower your margins. So try to improve all the factors that will help you win the buy box often and also increase repetitive sales. You can also keep an eye on the buy box using the buy box tracker to see the offer rankings, low and high price and other useful data.

You can sign up 10-days free trial to see how this and other useful tracking features can help you improve overall performance of your Amazon business.

Scroll to Top