Familiarize yourself with these 4 essential Pillars.
If you read our post last week, you know why pivoting to stronger e-commerce is critical now more than ever. In this post, we'll break down the Amazon portion. It's the first of the key e-commerce areas we spoke about. First of all, we know you already understand navigating Amazon has numerous challenges. But also much opportunity – if you have the right plan.
That said, start your launch or optimizing plans with these four Pillars in mind. You'll be on your way to sustained growth and compliance with Amazon Terms of Service. As a digital marketing agency, we've used this 4 PILLAR approach to launch hundreds of new products and optimize dozens of storefronts. It works. And it'll work for you.
Assess your Amazon store & create growth goals.
If you haven't launched products yet, it's OK. The same basic ideas apply here. And you'll be better to have this data when you do launch – armed with insights to improve your ability to compete.
How's your product category doing in general on Amazon? Do you know? Or what about how much your direct competitors sell on Amazon monthly and the keywords they use? This may be eye opening - maybe even shocking! But if you don't know where or how to get this intel, you're not alone. We'll show you!
A tool we use a lot and really like is Helium 10. It's got a wealth of power and functionality to help you research and plan. It will also help you with PILLAR 1 and with Amazon PPC Advertising. If you do have products listed, what are your monthly sales? Now write down reasonable sales goals – short, mid, and long term.
• Use Helium 10 to understand your category & mine competitor intel.
• Set SMART goals: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Timely
• Let the data drive your decision making.
How are your products listed and organized? Optimize your base product with size/flavor variations rather than listing SKUs separately. This tactic, called parentage, ensures a good parent-child product foundation and consolidates reviews. Now determine your best price and case pack from Helium 10 competitor research.
Remember, aggressively-priced variety packs induce more flavor trial. And if your shipping charges are separate or higher than the product SRP, consider adding shipping into the selling price and having total price included reflecting free shipping.
Have a federally registered trademark? Apply for Amazon Brand Registry. It’s free as a 3rd Party Seller. You can get it done within a week. Upon approval, you'll enjoy many brand building benefits such as: More control over intellectual property violations and being able to create an Amazon Stores Page. BR gives you the ability to design A+ Content for your product listings, getting into Amazon Vine to get trusted reviews, and being able to run Sponsored Products & Brands PPC advertising.
MARKETability action items:
• Also use Helium 10 to do product case pack, parentage, & pricing research.
• Organize your product listings in the right size, flavor variations, & case pack.
• Establish favorable pricing bundled with shipping or consider FBA.
• Get Brand Registered for excellent storefront brand-building benefits.
When you realize people use Amazon an average of 3x more than Google for product search, you can see the opportunity. Better Amazon Discoverability means doing strategic keyword research first. Then optimizing your product listings including titles, content, and back-end search terms around those relevant keywords.
Use SEO keywords with tools like SEM Rush SEO Tools to begin. You'll find relevant keywords and phrases specific to your products. Amazon search is different from Google search. So make sure your listing includes relevant keywords.
Think about your keyword strategy by putting yourself in shopper's shoes. Ask what would connect the right product to what people are searching for. Is your product the most relevant?
Strong Discoverability uses Amazon’s A9 search algorithm to your favor. It’s at the heart of an optimized product listing. Focus on higher-volume but more-relevant keywords. Ones you can try to compete for. Keep in mind long-tail keywords are easier to bid on – most likely with fewer monthly searches. But they might increase your conversions and sales.
DISCOVERability action items:
• Optimize your Amazon Seller Information Page with logo, bio, & URL.
• Use SEM Rush to do keyword research & competitor keyword analysis.
• Implement your keywords in your titles & product listing content.
• Upload your keywords in back-end search terms for each listing.
PILLAR 3: BUYability
OK now Amazon shoppers have found you. What next? Well, how are you presenting your brand? Is your copy celebrating it or detracting? Consumer data these days points to shoppers not wanting to be sold to. That means the best way to reach shoppers is getting them to connect with your brand, products, and company.
BUYability goes hand in hand with benefit-driven content and your brand story. Connect with shoppers viscerally and through their tastebuds. Compel them to feel your passion and your mission. Exceptional content means higher page conversions – every time!
Start with amazing photos and infographics. Is your copy formatted well, and engaging? Enticing copy infused with HTML and researched SEO keywords from PILLAR 2 will improve page conversion. Improving BUYability isn't just for Amazon shoppers. Distributors, buyers, mom-and-pops, and other retailers consider your product pages also.
BUYability action items:
• Use outstanding product & lifestyle photos to tell your brand story.
• Make your About the Product bullets no more than 88 characters.
• Use HTML & keywords for your text-based product description copy.
• Write casually in the 1st person & share how people enjoy your product.
• Use A+ Content & build out your Amazon product pages & Stores page.
Check out this infographic to the left or download it HERE! And welcome to the long game. Consistent effort, available inventory, good sales velocity, and verified reviews. Start with that to grow right. And show Amazon you're a serious committed seller. Amazon determines your product’s rank based on a variety of factors – both directly and indirectly.
Other RANKability factors include sales history, excellent seller feedback, buy box authority, pricing, shipment method, and availability. That may feel complicated. But focusing on this will help you grow.
First, start with tools like eComEngine's Feedback 5 to set up automated product review e-mails. How you ship your product also matters. If possible, create dual FBM and FBA listings. But if you have the margins, opt to ship FBA and earn the Prime badge. Next test lots of promos and coupons. Finally, a key driver here is your Amazon PPC Sponsored Products & Brands Advertising.
Consider PILLAR 4 as investing in your future. If you're a new brand, consider Amazon Vine (Brand Registry required) where they invite the most trusted reviewers on Amazon to post opinions about your new products. Or Amazon Launchpad which can provide you as an entrepreneur with marketing insights and global infrastructure to showcase your emerging products. Incredible marketing support! Each program might make sense for new products and long-term exposure.
RANKability action items:
• Use Feedback 5 to automate e-mails to ask for reviews.
• Create FBA listings and get going on Amazon Prime.
• Implement ongoing Amazon promos & PPC Advertising campaigns.
• Promote your Amazon store via social media, email marketing, and blogging.
• Consider Amazon Vine for reviews & Amazon Launchpad for marketing support.
HERE'S YOUR FREE 4-PILLAR CHECKLIST
For a quick overview of how to make Amazon work for you, we've summarize all of this in a FREE Amazon Success & Growth Checklist.
This guide will run through the steps we've mentioned for you to consider and implement as you hone your Amazon growth plan. Plus you'll build a solid foundation for understanding and organizing your strategies.
DIY YOUR AMAZON?
If you want to take this yourself, start with Shannon Roddy's Marketplace Seller Courses. We thoroughly believe that educating yourself the right way is a game changer when it comes to building long-term growth.
Sign up for Shannon's FREE 15 Minute Course For Food Brands. We've worked with Shannon to help numerous gourmet foods brands. He's the best in the business!
Learn Shannon's strategy as well as the tools and resources available to you to grow a successful business on Amazon’s Marketplace. It's worth every penny. And it will propel you forward along your Amazon growth journey.
MAYBE WORK WITH AN AGENCY – LIKE US?
Often it may be easier, save you more money, and be way more profitable to work with specialists rather than trying to do everything yourself. Regardless, we can support you. Or perhaps even compliment your existing team.
Need more ideas on how to implement Amazon strategies? Book a call. As members of the same gourmet food community, we're excited to share our resources. And try and point you in the right direction. In the coming weeks, we'll keep breaking down strategies for you. Stay tuned as we share key resources to support your e-commerce growth.
Happy Amazon Selling,