Prime Day may have come and gone, but this November is projected to be the busiest month for Amazon on record.
For one, the shift to online shopping brought on by the pandemic has forever changed the way consumers shop. And second, inventory delays have caused customers to panic buy and kick off their holiday shopping extra early.
Luckily, there are many ways to take advantage of this influx of traffic and use it in Q4 all the way into Q1.
We’ve done the heavy lifting for you and compiled the best tips for selling on Amazon this quarter.
Let’s dive in!
What We’ll Cover:
Tips for Selling on Amazon: Inventory
To guarantee that your inventory will be in stock for the Black Friday/Cyber Monday holiday weekend, it had to be submitted to Amazon by November 3, 2021.
The company recently announced, “This is Amazon’s FBA inventory cut-off deadline for U.S. sellers to ensure your inventory is available for Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and Christmas selling on Amazon. Inventory should arrive at our fulfillment centers by this date to ensure your clients’ products are available for customers during the holidays.”
If you still haven’t completed this step, you can send it in now. But, keep in mind that there are no guarantees.
However, if your stock is running low, you have two options:
- Fulfill it yourself—Create a duplicate of all of your FBA ASINs as FBM. These duplicates will have the same ASIN, but a different SKU. In layman’s terms, this means that when you run out of FBA inventory, you can activate your FBM listing and continue to sell your products.
- Decrease the ads you’re running for your product—This will help you stretch your inventory for as long as possible.
From a ranking standpoint, the worst thing that can happen is that you run out of stock, especially if you are running ads. When this happens, your organic ranking will drop and it may take some time to regain your position in the SERPs.
Tips for Selling on Amazon: Creative
Add Holiday-Specific Tab to Store
Did you know you can create a separate holiday promotion tab and add all the products that you’re running a special discount for? You even have the ability to spruce up your custom creative to engage consumers.
This makes it easier for shoppers to identify the products on sale or ones that would make good gifts.
This route enhances the customer shopping journey, eliminating any confusion when shopping. This is useful if you have a large product catalog and are only discounting a few items. It will also lead to a boost in sales, which is the goal after all.
Sponsored Brand Ads (SB Ads)
The sponsored product ad space is very saturated right now as everyone is advertising on Amazon. This creates an opportunity for brands to take advantage of another ad type that is less popular and arguably, more effective—Sponsored Brand ads.
These are some of Amazon’s flagship ad types often used to target users at the beginning of their shopping journey.
The good news is that Amazon now allows you to run custom creative SB ads. These ads are significantly more dynamic, interactive, and visually compelling. They also yield higher click-through and conversion rates when done correctly.
To capture the attention of potential customers, consider creating custom holiday ads. Send people to custom landing pages or to the holiday tab in your storefront. You can also create a custom SB ad for any promotions you plan to run over the next few months.
Sponsored Brand Video Ads (SPV Ads)
Amazon took a major leap into the realm of video advertising with the launch of SBV ads earlier this year. Brands are already seeing a great return with these ads. They are more eye-catching and easily digestible. Video is one of the most effective marketing tools to reach and educate new customers.
If your creative team has the bandwidth, think about creating 3-5 seasonal videos for your best-selling products. Doing this during Q4 will differentiate your brand from competitors.
Tips for Selling on Amazon: Advertising
As Amazon’s popularity continues to skyrocket, CPC advertising during the busiest time of the year on the platform is expected to jump as well.
To stay ahead of the curve, make sure you have set aside a sizable budget for November and December. It’s time to ramp up ads.
Brands should use their year-over-year data to restrict automated targeting. This will prevent excessive spending on irrelevant searches. Be aware that the more ads you run with bigger budgets, the higher your CPCs will be across the board. So you need to be very intentional with how you’re allocating your ad spend.
To start, perform monthly keyword harvests to ensure that you are eliminating areas of wasted spend. Optimize the campaigns you’re currently running to take advantage of the increased traffic on Amazon.
Then, run retargeting SB ads to capture market audiences. You’ll also want to have all of your retargeting campaigns, including SB ads and DSP ads, ready to ramp immediately after any surges in traffic.
This will be critical leading up to Black Friday/Cyber Monday and early December. Take the data into Q1 to continue to engage people interested in your product who didn’t purchase when initially browsing your products.
It doesn’t stop there. By increasing competitor targeting, you can capture in-market audiences who may not be familiar with your brand. You can also capture people who are deliberating between a few different options. Pull competitor reports to make sure you’re targeting relevant brands and keep an eye on who is targeting your product.
Don’t be afraid to set a budget that allows for all-day visibility. Let your competitors fight for the top spots earlier in the day and surpass their budget. That way, you can wait and start making sales later in the day when there is less competition.
Tips for Selling on Amazon: Promotions
Amazon Lightning Deals
While the cutoff date to submit Lightning Deals for BF/CM has already passed, it’s important to keep these discounts top of mind for future campaigns.
Amazon Lightning Deals are exclusive, time-sensitive promotional offers that can are available on Amazon’s Deal of The Day page. Amazon determines which day your deal will be promoted and the sale will only last 4-6 hours.
To be eligible, products must have the following:
- A 3.0-star product rating or higher
- In an Amazon-approved category
- Enough quantity to last the full duration of the Lightning Deal
- 20% minimum discount
Lightning Deals can boost conversions and sales by enticing shoppers to purchase your product for a limited-time discount. They are effective for liquidating inventory or reducing inventory quickly as a way to avoid excess storage fees if you are overstocked.
On the flip side, Lightning Deals are costly to run. The typical fee for an Amazon Lightning Deal is $150. The fee is typically higher during special sales events like Prime Day, Black Friday, Cyber Monday and during December. This is due to the surge in traffic on Amazon’s site.
By creating a promotion on Amazon, you can offer your products at a discounted rate to increase sales.
Some of the most common promotions include:
- Percentage off: Specify the discount and choose whether to…
- Create claim codes for single-use (this limits each shopper to a single discounted purchase) or
- Create claim codes for multi-use (a generic code like “SAVENOW30” that anyone can use).
- Buy One Get One (BOGO): For every item they purchase, consumers will get an item for free.
Promotions can put you on the fast track toward increasing brand awareness. They also drive additional traffic to your products to boost sales. But whichever type of promotion offer, your margins will be impacted. As a team, you can calculate how much you can afford to invest in these promotions in order to make a profit.
Amazon coupons show up in search results, on product detail pages, and other places including Sponsored Product ads. They offer an easy way for online shoppers to save money on products they’re interested in,
Just like physical coupons you’d find in a newspaper, shoppers “clip” these coupons to apply them to their order. Once the coupon is clipped, they get added to the eligible item in the shopping cart.
When shoppers see your product alongside your competitors in the search results, coupons can give you the edge to win their click. It’s a viable way to bring in new customers, build brand awareness, and increase conversions for your business.
These discounts are only available to Prime members and are offered on Prime-eligible products sold through FBA.
Although it’s free to set up, your product needs to meet the following criteria:
- Minimum discount must be 10%-20% off the listed price
- No rating or 3.0-star rating
- New condition
- The discount needs to be the lowest price within the last 30 days
Unfortunately, launching a Prime-Exclusive discount, won’t always lead to a big jump in sales as they tend to be more of a marketing tool for Amazon.
While the competition on Amazon can be fierce, the holiday shopping season is the most important time of the year for many sellers.
Your best bet is to plan ahead and develop your strategy around tried and tested Amazon seller advice.
If you make all the right moves early, your ecommerce business should finish strong in Q4.