Sprocket Express supports small and local businesses. We are a small business ourselves and we know how hard it is to compete with the giants in any field. That said, it is impossible to ignore the impact that Amazon has had on ecommerce. It affects just about every business on the planet.
You can’t beat them… here are three reasons why you should join them.
1. Increase Sales
Who doesn’t want more exposure and more customers? Amazon reliably provides both of these invaluable resources.
There are 300 million Amazon users. And half of all US online shoppers have the Amazon shopping app. In this marketplace, loyalty is to the market rather than the brand. But, for the same reasons that your business has a website and social media profiles, it needs to engage with Amazon to compete in today’s world.
Customer reviews on everything from hotels to lightbulbs are a driving force. Over 85% of consumers trust reviews as much as personal recommendations. According to Craig Smith of Expanded Ramblings, 44% of all online shoppers go directly to Amazon for product searches. With 80% of their users ordering once a month and 20% ordering every week, the level of activity is astounding. That means roughly 60 million people order from this single marketplace every week. With a very modest conversion rate, your business can grow wildly by adding just this one channel to your current plan.
2. Beat the Shipping Demon
Free shipping is the single biggest motivator for shoppers. It more than levels the playing field with brick-and-mortar stores because it is so convenient, and it counts as the number one consideration online. Despite years of effort by numerous companies, a solid 60% of online shoppers that abandon their carts still do so because of shipping/handling fees.
Many businesses cannot afford to offer free shipping, usually because their own shipping costs are too high and margins don’t allow enough room. But, since Amazon spends about $20 billion a year on shipping costs, the carriers give them pretty decent rates. You can even take advantage of these rates when you ship your inventory to Amazon warehouses and pay as little as 50% of your normal shipping costs if you use the prepared label.
For the roughly 75 billion Prime members, shipping is free on Fulfilled by Amazon (FBA) items. When a business wants to fulfill its own Amazon orders, we strongly recommend offering free shipping unless the product is absolutely unique.
And it’s not just free; it’s fast. When your inventory is stored by Amazon using their FBA program, your products reach customers everywhere in the US in two days with Prime shipping. This perk cannot be underestimated. Today’s consumers want it now! Storing inventory in multiple locations is a logistical impracticality for a small business. That’s why we recommend using the FBA program to reach further and faster.
3. Affordable Advertising
Sponsored ads an Amazon are surprisingly affordable. You can choose to allow Amazon to automatically target placements based on the keywords in your product listing, or you can specify your own keywords. For as little as $5-10 per day, your products can appear more often in front of customers. This is a great way to show off a low price or a little-known brand.
There are other promotional opportunities such as special pricing and sales.
The interface is very easy to use and the basic reports are easy to read. You can see your expense vs. sales with the ROI displayed in a simple format. There are no layers of tabs and settings to navigate, as with other advertising platforms, so you can setup a campaign in about 5 minutes and get back to running your business.
Stores like Toys R Us have seen the dangerous impact of trying to work without Amazon in the current shopping climate. Adaptability is the key to success and it’s clear that businesses need to adjust to compete in the omnichannel environment.
As you can see, it’s not really so bad to work with Amazon. Any business can benefit from their enormous loyal audience and reach customers more quickly than by building individual brand loyalty alone. Here are a few more tips about successfully working with Amazon to build your business further.
Sprocket Express has years of experiencing with Amazon marketplace software and regulations. We can help you smoothly expand your channel reach.