Selling on Amazon: new trends
Finding out how to sell on Amazon with the best possible practices it’s of vital importance. Today you will understand why this is one of the biggest concerns of intelligent marketing managers.
Usually, most consumers start their online shopping searches with a visit to Google. But is this procedure always repeated? As the data from NPR and Marist point out, Amazon is the main starting point for online shoppers.
44% of online consumers start on Amazon. And this already represents 11% more than those who do it from Google. Considering that 40% of users buy products online once a month, selling on Amazon has become a dilemma for brands.
Complete guide on how to sell on Amazon: 9 good practices
As a matter of fact, if you are in the e-commerce industry, finding out how to sell on Amazon is your best bet to maximize your reach and your income. However, to help you set up your store on Amazon, here you will find a complete guide with tips, tricks and best practices.
This way you will list your articles, configure your shipping options, make promotions, manage testimonials, etc.
1.- Find out if your product needs approval from Amazon
Prior to discovering how to sell on Amazon, you need to make sure that your product belongs to one of the open categories of the platform. In case your article belongs to any of these categories, you will not need Amazon’s approval and the process will be easier and faster.
However, there are 15 categories that do require Amazon supervision. In consequence, you will have to request a subscription to the professional sales plan in order to sell.
All this is done to limit the number of vendors in each segment. By doing so, the platform ensures that the quality of the products they sell. However, if you think your items are on par and need to sell them in one of those categories, you must complete the application form. After 3 days they will inform you if it has been approved.
Among the categories that require Amazon approval, you can find everything from automotive to wristwatches and food:
- Automotive and Powersports.
- B2B products for companies.
- Collection coins.
- Fashion jewelry.
- Fine jewelry.
- Fine arts.
- Groceries and gourmet food.
- Industrial and Scientific Material.
- Luggage and travel accessories.
- Professional services.
- Shoes, bags and sunglasses.
- Video, DVD and Blu-Ray.
2.- Choose a sales plan for your business
Other elements you have to address to determine how to sell on Amazon is to choose a sales plan. The platform has two options:
- Individual plan.
- Professional plan.
As you can see, if you choose the Individual Plan, you will have to pay Amazon €0.99 for each item you sell. To that, you will have to add the reference rates. Amazon states this plan is better for sellers who manage to sell less than 40 items per month.
On the other hand, the Professional Plan would allow you to sell an unlimited number of products while you only pay Amazon a fee of €39 per month. This plan would be perfect if you sold more than 40 items per month.
3.- Sign up to obtain your merchant account and list your products
To sign up for an Amazon seller account, you just have to access Amazon Seller Central and click on “Start selling.” In there you will also be able to manage your sales account.
The next step to finding out how to sell on Amazon is to publish your products. In case you have the Individual plan, you can add it to the Amazon Marketplace catalog. For the professional plan, you will be allowed to include batches of products to the catalog.
If you are selling products that are already on Amazon, all you have to do is indicate the number of items you want to sell, the condition and your shipping method. If they are not listed on Amazon, the process would be somewhat more complicated.
You must indicate each universal product code (UPC) and the stock-keeping unit (SKU) of your product. Then, you will have to list the characteristics of each product on Amazon, as well as its title and the description.
4.- Set your shipping methods
One of the concerns about how to sell on Amazon lies in the shipping methods. But you should know that you can send the products on your own.
However, Amazon also provides unique shipping service with benefits for all its sellers. If you try it, you will find it difficult to move on from it.
This is Fulfillment by Amazon. With this service, all you have to do is send your inventory to an Amazon center and they will store your products, package them and send them to your customers. Shipping costs are already included in your seller plan, so all you have to pay is storage space and a fee for every order Amazon receives.
5.- Promote your products
The fifth step of the guide on how to sell with Amazon is to promote your products. You need to attract as many potential customers as possible, so, in addition to creating optimal product pages, be sure to post product ads.
We recommend to catch up with Amazon Ads. This way you can access these types of advertising on the platform:
- Sponsored product announcements.
- Search ads under headlines.
- Amazon product display ads.
6.- Encourage product reviews and ratings
Reviews are very important to boost the sales of any business. Part of the mystery about “How to sell on Amazon” is also resolved with reviews.
The more reviews your products have, customers will feel more credibility towards them. The items will gain confidence and your company too. Fortunately, Amazon allows sellers to send follow-up emails to customers after they place an order to request their opinion. A clear example of this is the email shown above.
Amazon even allows you to automate that process. Although it also asks you to follow a set of guidelines, and it is very clear that it is not allowed to include commercial messages, links to other websites and encourage positive comments through emails.
So much that in 2016, the sales giant banned including incentivized reviews. That is, those customer reviews that were generated in exchange for a free product or a discount. These incentives artificially inflated average brand ratings. Amazon decided that they needed to level the quality.
With this in mind, don’t even consider trying to encourage users to leave you a positive review. Simply send your customers after-sales emails, asking gently for a review of your product.
7.- Create a powerful SEO
Amazon will not stop growing. In fact, it continually adds new trends, updates and functions to adapt to the expectations and needs of the users. But what happens if you, as a seller, become obsolete? You need to keep constantly current to your potential target.
Amazon is the strongest product search engine at the moment. For this reason, it is important that you stay well positioned so that your potential buyers can locate you quickly.
8.- Create a quick feedback system
As in any business, customers have doubts about the products, their operation, etc. And you as the seller need to clear each of those doubts.
It is very likely that when selling on Amazon, you receive messages with questions of all kinds. You should try to answer as soon as possible for all of them. This way you will improve your company’s reputation in the eyes of other buyers and the platform itself will rate you positively, since response times are fundamental when it comes to positioning you in a better place.
Additionally, it is recommended that you do not lose sight of the rankings of other companies that could be competitors. For example, in case you face a problematic client trying to make a claim, try to solve it as soon as possible. Even if you lose money, your reputation will not be impaired. Even that client can make you good publicity if you manage to solve their problem satisfactorily.
9.- Automate your posts
Automatically launching items that are on sale is a good idea to sell on Amazon. Especially since performing this process manually will take away a lot of time that you could be investing in other strategies.
Therefore, selling with a store on Amazon can be a very interesting option when expanding your sales space without the need for expensive investments. It is simple to carry out and economically interesting.