December 17, 2021
By: Tim Jordan
Tim Jordan is the Chief Growth Officer for SellersFunding, and host of the AM PM Podcast. Tim is also a keynote speaker for multiple eCommerce driven events specifically on how to find the next profitable product to sell.
What It Takes To Grow Your Amazon Sales…And Why It Matters.
Amazon is a brand name trusted by millions of online shoppers. And with nearly 100s of millions of Amazon shoppers, listing your products on Amazon is one of the fastest ways to sell online.
However, as great as it all sounds, becoming a successful Amazon seller requires more effort than simply throwing up some listings and watching the money roll in.
There is also a lot of competition on Amazon, and there are various practices that new and veteran sellers alike can put into action to increase sales.
1. Proper Indexing and Accurate Product Listings
Amazon has a LOT of listings, and the ability for Amazon to show the appropriate person tailored results is based on what they type as a keywords, depends on Amazon’s ability to index.
Indexing is basically the way that Amazon determines if a product is appropriate, or relevant, for the keyword that the buyer typed in and searched for.
This process of indeed is very complicated, but there are things that we as sellers can do to help ensure that we get the best exposure and indexing possible.
To ensure proper indexing and increase the visibility of your product listings on Amazon, include as much relevant product information as possible, based on the recommended fields.
The title of your listing is the first written info that a potential buyer will see about your product, and Amazon seems to give a lot of “indexing juice” for keywords in your title.
This is where you will place your most relevant keywords, in a way that also looks appealing. Don’t just stuff keywords in your title to fill space, as buyers also need to be attracted to the item listing.
Bullet points are a vital part of your product listing. Shopping surveys have revealed that well-crafted bullet points multiply sales.
They can be used to incorporate information that helps to mimic an in-store experience. Use bullet points to highlight key features like size, material, the purpose of the products, the benefits, etc.
The location of bullet point placement within a listing varies between mobile or desktop view, but they continue to be valuable real-estate for your listing, when it comes to converting sales.
Although less viewed than the title and bullet points, a listing description has some serious indexing and converting power.
This is a great place to tell your brand story or describe your product in detail, which can absolutely increase your indexability and conversions.
If you run out of space in your “frontend” (title, bullets, description) then you can use other fields within the backed of an Amazon listing. Different categories and products have different field, but try to enter as much relevant information for your product as possible. This helps Amazon determine where your product should be displayed. You do NOT need to duplicate keywords in your backend, that are already in your frontend.
2. Amazon’s Product Image Requirements
Product Images play a very important role in product listings. As a new seller on Amazon, there is a lot you can learn about the role of images in product listings.
A lot of information can confuse your priorities, so don’t lose sight of the basics. Amazon has very specific requirements for uploading images on its site, sellers are allowed to upload 7-9 images per product.
The first image has to conform to Amazon standards, but the remaining 8 images can be anything you choose from lifestyle, info-graphics, or whatever you think could boost your sales.
Images are extremely powerful, as they are usually the VERY FIRST thing that potential sellers see. Make sure that they are high-quality, show the features of the product, and help convince sellers that they NEED that product.
You can tell stories and give great information in these images, so make sure to invest in them. They ABSOLUTELY increase sales, ranking, and profits!
Pro Tip: You may want to invest in specific Amazon listing optimization tools that will give you feedback to improve the quality of your listing.
3. Featured Merchant Status and the Amazon Buy Box
Multiple resellers use the Amazon platform to sell the same product. The Buy Box is an Amazon feature that can increase a retailer’s sales exponentially and allow him to get ahead in the game.
Only sellers qualifying for ‘Featured Merchant’ status can compete for the Buy Box.
For this, you have to meet Amazon’s specific seller performance criteria by consistently providing customers with great buying experiences.
Amazon does not disclose specific targets needed to qualify for Featured Merchant status since seller performance metric targets can vary by category and are subject to change.
The product listings of all Featured Merchants are evaluated based on many factors such as availability, price, and shipping cost while only one seller gets selected for the Buy Box.
The Buy Box winner is presented as the first choice for buyers with the “Add to Shopping Cart” box on product detail pages.
There is a general misconception that the lowest price will win the Buy Box. This is not true since pricing is just one factor that is evaluated.
Competitive pricing, high volume, consistent availability, a low refund rate, positive customer feedback, and minimal returns are the range of factors that can increase your chances of winning the Buy Box.
4. Stock Availability and Inventory Updates
If you don’t have current stock for a product, you cannot win the Buy Box, so ensure that your popular products are always in stock.
Keep your inventory updated (and having an eCommerce inventory management strategy) to prevent shoppers from ordering out-of-stock items.
You have to take more care during holiday seasons as your stock may run out faster. You can set your Amazon Seller Central Account to vacation mode to temporarily remove your open listings for FBM items.
You can simply set your listing status to inactive until you are ready to fulfill orders again. This provides a better experience for buyers by preventing them from placing orders that can’t be fulfilled right away. This is a useful feature when you want to take a holiday break or plan your vacations.
An inactive listing status does not affect your buyer-seller messaging.
You will still be able to create and edit listings, though any changes will be reflected on the Amazon website only when you reactivate your listings. Any applicable monthly subscription fees will continue to be charged during this inactive period.
Before you change the status, make sure that there are no pending orders since these are not canceled automatically. Only open listings for FBM items will be removed, all listings fulfilled by FBA will remain active.
5. Consistent Order Management and Customer Service
Though Amazon sellers get emails alerting them to new orders, it is better to make a habit of checking the ‘Manage Orders’ section of your seller account every day. If you fulfill orders by yourself, make sure your inventory doesn’t go too low by keeping an eye on stock movements and tracking orders as they come and go. Your goal is to ship orders within two business days as Amazon expects its sellers.
Amazon also expects its sellers to immediately respond to a person’s request when they contact sellers regarding the questions about products, order refunds, return, etc.
Although Amazon is no longer to take Contact Response Time into account when measuring seller performance, sellers still should reply to messages within 2 days.
Amazon takes care of the fulfillment process for your FBA items, but it doesn’t provide customer support for all customers.
Sometimes you still need to manage your customer relationship and provide them a good shopping experience by responding to customer requests or solving their order issues on Buyer-Seller Messaging Service in your Amazon Seller Central account.
However, we don’t encourage sellers using Buyer-Seller Messaging Service since it doesn’t have an auto-response feature. Timely, high-quality responses to customer inquiries play an important role in customer satisfaction. Slow response time can lead to negative feedback, consequently claims that can threaten your Amazon selling privileges.
How to speed up your Amazon success?
These tips are basic but important that every seller should need to know. Once you start to put these tips into practice, you should also constantly improve the results. It will help you to increase sales.
But if you want to speed up your success, Amazon seller tools are the perfect investment for a seller to make it happen as soon as possible. You can save a ton of time to focus on something that matters more: branding, marketing, scaling, etc., most importantly, spending time with your family.
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