Do you have a growth strategy in place for your e-commerce store? Whether it’s selling internationally, selling in physical retail stores, or expanding your product line, it’s important to consider your options and think about which strategy has the most opportunity to grow your business. As an e-commerce seller, you’re aware of the blood, sweat, and tears that you put into generating online sales. Every year it gets more challenging with new brands popping up and stores closing their physical locations to focus on e-commerce sales.
The large and well-known competitor for the majority of online sellers is Amazon. The e-commerce giant owns a majority of the online market share and is continuously innovating and expanding into new markets like with Whole Foods and home grocery delivery with AmazonFresh. With their Prime shipping and their hyper-focus on customer personalization, it’s no wonder they’re an ecommerce leader.
Fulfilled by Amazon (FBA)
Today, when people buy products online, they want them delivered quickly. Amazon gives you that opportunity through Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA). Utilizing FBA helps your products become Prime eligible, which is an attractive “perk” when shoppers see that your products are eligible for free Prime shipping, delivery by Amazon and helps sellers potentially be the main seller for the product (winning the Buy Box). Using FBA is a great competitive advantage and makes your products more attractive to potential customers. With FBA, you don’t have to worry about the fulfillment process or returns, as Amazon takes care of it for you, giving you more time to focus on your business and growing sales.
Another great perk about FBA is the 24/7 customer support, which includes following up with the customer to make sure they are satisfied with their shipments and handling any questions from customers. And the best part is that the discounted shipping rates Amazon gets are passed through to your business when sending in inventory to their fulfillment centers. FBA is one of the many useful tools that can help you, as a seller, save time on logistics. If you want to learn more about Fulfillment by Amazon and some of the factors will help get your products in the Prime category, then refresh your knowledge with part 2 of our E-commerce Guide to Selling on Amazon.
When it comes to Amazon, you just can’t compete with the number of buyers on the platform. According to Day One: The Amazon Blog, Amazon “exceeded 100 million paid Prime members globally” in 2017. With the vast number of members on Amazon, their online community grew and helped Amazon’s efforts at developing a trustworthy and transparent marketplace with super fast shipping and prices below brick and mortar stores.
The Amazon community helps each other find quality products with detailed reviews, photos, and ratings. On Amazon, a lot of things are driven by reviews and customer feedback, which is what makes people perceive the Amazon marketplace as a website they can get honest feedback for the products they’re interested in. They can get all the information they’re looking for on a single product listing, which essentially helps move them along toward the path of purchase.
As a new seller starting out, you likely won’t have any reviews, but you can leverage your existing customers and ask them to review your products on Amazon. Maybe you provide them with a coupon for their next purchase or other incentives. Or if you’re releasing a new product on Amazon, the Early Reviewer Program is an excellent promotional opportunity to grow product reviews. Customers who have already purchased your product are invited to write a review for an Amazon incentive.
Complementary to reviews, there is a question-and-answer portion that shoppers can ask and find answers to commonly asked questions. The additional information that shoppers read on Amazon makes it possible for people to rely on the Amazon community for informed and detailed information necessary to make informed purchases without ever having to pick up the product in real life.
Amazon is great at providing its sellers with the tools they need to get additional visibility to help boost their business and product sales. One way to increase product and brand awareness is through paid amazon campaigns. Because a large portion of people use Amazon as a search engine, paid advertising is excellent for product discovery and consideration. People like trying new brands, so promoting your products will help you get your brand in front of new audiences who are already looking to purchase something you’re selling.
Amazon provides sellers with 3 campaign options to promote products and your brand. The campaign types include sponsored product ads, sponsored brand ads, and product display ads, which are all very straightforward to develop through their ad platform. There’s no minimum spend amount, so you can set your budget as big or as small as you’d like and their reporting dashboard makes it simple to track campaign performance, return on investment (ROI), and sales. Part III of our E-commerce Guide to Selling on Amazon walks through the details of each campaign type, requirements to be eligible to advertise, and the branded storefront.
When looking to expand your business into other markets Amazon is an excellent place to start. Amazon is known globally and provides an opportunity to increase slower sales periods with peak seasons in other countries. As you know, Amazon provides 24/7 customer support, but when you sell internationally, they also provide support in that country’s native language.
Some companies wouldn’t have even tried to sell internationally on their own because it’s a lot of work to set up the different tax rates, convert into other currencies, sort through customs and shipping, and other logistical items that vary from country to country; but Amazon’s template-like platform cuts out some of that tedious work.
Using the Amazon platform will help your products gain international exposure while you learn the ropes of becoming an international seller. Even if you’re a small business selling products out of your bedroom, Amazon makes it simple for you to share your products with the rest of the world, saving you time, money, and effort.
Take Control of Your Product Sales
Selling on the Amazon platform can yield great results and allow you to diversify your income streams, but you may be losing out on potential sales by ignoring the Amazon marketplace. If you decide not to sell on Amazon, third-party sellers are known for buying products in bulk at wholesale prices and turning around and selling them on Amazon where your company doesn’t get any of the profits. There are remedies for combating unauthorized reselling but it’s easier for your company to be on the Amazon marketplace so your company receives the sales.
The truth of the matter is, Amazon owns a lot of traffic and knows how to retain customers with its Prime feature alone. As an Amazon seller, you don’t have to worry about driving traffic and in turn, you get more time to focus on creating product pages that are informative and retail-ready.
As an Amazon Pay partner, we can help you launch your brand on Amazon in no time. If you’re looking to take your e-commerce store to the next level, fill out our project form with your information and we can discuss how we can assist you with your e-commerce growth strategy. In the meantime, get a head start on Amazon by reading our multi-part blog series on Amazon. You can read part I of our E-commerce Selling Guide on how to set up your Amazon seller account.