Running a successful Amazon business is not just about what you do on Amazon.Tom Buckland
Over the past few years, a great many people have decided to sell goods on Amazon. In fact, there are now over 5 million sellers on Amazon, up from just 2 million in 2015.
The success rates for Amazon sellers vary significantly, but some have built highly successful online businesses. There are plenty of examples of incredible success stories of companies and entrepreneurs who showcase the incredible growth and sales which is possible from applying the right Amazon strategies and tactics.
Success Story #1: Whoosh
Whoosh is a company which sells tech hygiene products and electronic gadgets, which was once focused on physical storefronts rather than ecommerce sales. The brand decided to open up access to its target market, who mostly shop online, by selling on Amazon.
Their Amazon launch heavily involved paid advertising such as display ads. The campaign purchased ad space to block competitor’s ads from buying displayed on their product listings, as well as purchasing ad space on those competitor’s listings. Additionally, they used a combination of keywords and paid headline search ads to drive organic traffic to their retail brand page.
Finally, the brand optimised their Amazon product listings through persuasive, branded product descriptions and images. The overall result was a 170.4% increase in Amazon sales.
Success Story #2: Cards Against Humanity
Founder Max Tempkin created the Cards Against Humanity game to entertain himself and his friends. However, after running a Kickstarter campaign for seed funding, the game sold out of its FBA inventory within 6 days of the product launch. This was largely due to Tempkin’s tactic of creating a buzz ahead of the product’s launch by offering a downloadable version of the game through the Kickstarter campaign, as well as sending copies of the product to social media influencers.
The business has maintained incredible sales rates thanks to a combination of its distinctive packaging which stands out from competitors, and use of FBA with Chinese manufactures keeping production costs low. Today, Cards Against Humanity sells an average of 40,000 copies a month on Amazon and has gross sales of over $1.5 million to date.
Success Story #3: Kap7
Kap7 has achieved incredible rankings on Amazon for a small company of just 7 people. The Los Angeles-based aquatics brand made a conscious decision to focus their ecommerce efforts on Amazon, as this is where their target audience is most likely to search for products.
Through effectively targeting their ideal customers, gaining a competitive edge over other sellers and driving high volumes of sales, they are now one of the top ranked brands on Amazon for swimwear.
How To Sell on Amazon Successfully
There are many different Amazon sales strategies, which vary in the amount of expertise, resources and investment required to execute them. There are, however, certain key strategies which are essential to building a successful Amazon business. Certain tactics, when executed well, can exponentially increase sales and revenue in a relatively short space of time.
Here are some of the most essential strategies and tactics to boost sales on Amazon and grow your ecommerce business.
Rank Your Listings
Bringing more traffic to your listing is one of the two core components of increasing ecommerce sales, the other one being increasing conversion rates (which we will cover in the next section). On Amazon, the number one thing you can do to drive traffic is to rank your product on Amazon search results. Ranking your product listings all comes down to the Amazon A9 algorithm.
A9, the Amazon ranking algorithm is similar to the algorithm Google uses to rank search results, with some key differences in the elements it looks for when ranking products. Notably, Amazon’s main concern is sales, as the company is interested in how much money you can make them, and so it will look at sales history and conversion rates in order to rank the product it thinks are most likely to translate into sales. Other main factors which are taken into consideration are keywords and reviews.
Driving sales, through improving conversion rates as well as external marketing, is therefore critical to rank your product listing, and therefore drive more sales. It is particularly important to start with strong sales immediately after launching your product, because the first 7 days are critical for ranking purposes. Give your listing the best chance of ranking by including multiple primary keywords in the listing title, product description and key product features. Use tools like SEMrush, Google’s Keyword Planner and Amazon-specific MerchantWords to identify primary keywords, and Keyworx to track results.
Optimise Your Conversion Rate
It is not enough to simply drive traffic to your listings, you also need to convert those visitors into actual sales. This is where CRO (conversion rate optimisation) comes in: improving your listing to ensure that the maximum number of visitors will proceed to purchase your product.
CRO for Amazon product listings is similar to CRO in any context: it is essential to use persuasive text which explains your product’s features, communicates their benefits to the customer and convinces your customer to buy. Apply marketing psychology techniques to persuade your customers. Have high quality, engaging images which show the benefits of your product.
A few points to note which are specific to Amazon:
Step Up Your External Marketing
Running a successful Amazon business is not just about what you do on Amazon. There are external marketing tactics which can be extremely effective in driving organic traffic to your listings and boosting sales.
Like in the Whoosh case study, paid advertising can be highly effective in driving traffic to your product listings both within the Amazon site, and from users browsing outside of it. On Amazon, you have variety of advertising options such as headline search ads, product display ads, lightning deals, daily discounts, coupons and sponsored product ads. You can also use external paid advertising such as Google Adwords, Facebook, and Content Networks to build brand awareness, reach new customers and bring in fresh leads.
Such advertising tactics can be great for driving traffic to your listing. This will not only increase sales, but it will also contribute to your strategy to rank your product highly on Amazon search results. If you do not have a large budget to spend on paid advertising, consider implementing it only in the crucial 7-day window following your product launch to assist to rank your listing.
As mentioned, having a number of positive reviews is a factor in how Amazon ranks your product listing. Reviews are also important for conversions, as customers are more likely to purchase a product with good reviews.
Most importantly, it is critical from both a rankings and conversion perspective that you build reviews immediately after launching your product. Delaying and waiting for the reviews to trickle in can be fatal to a listing.
Prepare this by setting up reviewers in advance: reach out to your network and ask them if they will be prepared to buy and review your product once it goes live. This could be current, former or potential customers, or simply your friends and family. As soon as you launch your product, get in touch again and remind them to buy. Then follow up in a few days and make sure they have left their review!
By applying certain tactics and strategies, you can easily become a successful Amazon seller, and even build your own online business.