Year-end is rolling around, and it is a time of the year that presents important sale opportunities for Amazon sellers. There are several key shopping events in the pipeline—such as Monthly Doubles, Prime Big Deal Days and Black Friday Sales.
In order to make the most of these opportunities and maximise your sales, sellers need to plan ahead and develop a well-thought-out strategy.
Here is where our guide comes into the picture. Below, we dive into action steps you need to take, and key aspects of your business you should focus on ahead of a major shopping event.
It is important to review and optimise your listings ahead of a major shopping event. Even with the right pricing and marketing strategies in place, you may fail to drive conversions if your product listings lack sufficient information to capture the interest of potential customers.
The first step is to conduct an audit of your listings. Check the product titles, images, descriptions, key product features and A+ content (this applies to registered brand owners) to ensure that the information is up-to-date.
Sellers often make the mistake of forgetting to utilise the hidden keywords field—so check that you have not left the field blank. You can fill in synonyms, words or products that are typically associated with the product listed or common misspellings.
Boost your marketing strategy
Giving your marketing strategy a boost can help you make the most of events and sale opportunities that take place around the mid-year, and tapping into third-party Amazon seller tools can help improve your marketing performance.
There are a variety of tools you can use. Product research tools can help sellers discover niche products, while content optimisation tools provide insights on keyword performance. Other types of tools, like seller feedback tools enable sellers to automate the process of sending review requests to customers.
You will also need to prepare your marketing budget for higher traffic. Shopping events can create a surge in traffic to Amazon, along with an increase in the number of clicks—which can cause your ad budget to run out more quickly than usual.
Ideally, you should set aside a campaign budget that’s at least twice that of your usual budget for the shopping event. Consider adding negative keywords to your PPC campaigns for terms that do not result in sales or conversion, and preparing social media posts that you could use to drive external traffic to your brand store or product pages.
Make an early start on inventory planning
Planning ahead is critical when it comes to inventory management—particularly when you are making preparations for a major shopping event.
It is a tricky line to balance—you want to avoid overstocking, while seeking to minimise your risk of stockouts at the same time. In either situation, your business could be adversely affected. Overstocking can result in increased storage fees, while understocking can lead to missed sales opportunities and lower levels of customer satisfaction and brand loyalty.
Studying past events, and reviewing your sales reports can provide insights or data that could help inform your stocking decisions for upcoming shopping events. If you are an FBA seller, make sure that your inventory will arrive at Amazon fulfilment centres before the cut-off date. You should also have back-up fulfilment through MFN, so as to avoid missing out on sales should your warehouse inventory run out.
Make full use of Seller Central resources, such as the Manage Your Inventory tab to optimise your inventory. The tool is designed to help you maintain optimum inventory levels and make informed, data-driven decisions. It offers a range of useful features: you can customise your metrics, view up to 250 ASINs per page (this allows for more convenient scrolling), receive recommendations on action steps to take to improve your inventory management and more.
To access the Manage Inventory Health tool, navigate to the Seller Central > Inventory > Inventory Planning > Manage Inventory Health (Excess, Aged and Restock Inventory).
During the event: Monitor your business closely, and be adaptable
On the day of a major shopping event, keeping your business running smoothly can feel like a juggling act for Amazon sellers. You need to keep a close watch over various aspects of your business, and be ready to adapt your strategies to any changes that may arise.
You need to check in on your campaigns at regular intervals throughout the day, and make adjustments as and when it is required. For instance, if your budget is running low, consider turning off low performing campaigns, and re-allocating your budget to your top performing products.
You will also need to keep an eye on your inventory levels, as well as the competition. Watch out for price changes or new product additions from your competitors, and have a backup plan ready—so you can easily pivot on the day of the event. With inventory management, you need to devise strategies that you can quickly implement to get around stockout situations. For example, if you are running low on stocks on Amazon FBA, consider using promotional mechanics like vouchers or the BXGY promotion to drive sales.
Make notes for the next quarter
It is good practice to review your performance after a shopping event. You should identify your best performing products, review your profit margins for your best and worst-performing products, and evaluate your advertising budget and campaign performance. You can then use the insights and information you have gathered to refine your budget and strategies for the upcoming quarter.
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