What you need from an Amazon consultant to help your retail business succeed.
Selling on Amazon is a key strategy for online retailers. The online retail giant has over 237 million active customers and accounts for 40% of online sales, giving you exposure to a large pool of buyers who are ready to make a purchase. In addition, you can leverage the trust Amazon has built with its customer base to drive sales.
Amazon offers programs, such as Amazon Prime, which help merchants attract customers. There’s no listing fee. You start with a small budget and join the Fulfillment By Amazon (FBA) program to streamline processes and optimize efficiency.
Amazon is also a great platform to test new products. You have access to robust reporting and a large amount of consumer data. This means you can gauge the demand for an item and what you can charge for it. Additionally, you can start selling right away without having to build an eCommerce store or figure out complicated logistics.
Yet, with so many merchants selling on Amazon, it’s challenging to stand out in this highly competitive environment. For example, if you aren’t implementing Amazon SEO effectively, your products may not rank high enough on relevant searches to attract potential customers.
Further, navigating the complicated rules and procedures can be very time-consuming, and any misstep could get your products delisted.
To optimize the benefits of selling on Amazon, mitigate the downsides, and stay competitive, merchants are leveraging the expertise of Amazon consultants. This may include to help drive traffic, increase sales, and manage compliance.
There are many Amazon strategy consulting services. How can you choose the right one to help your online retail business succeed?
What You Should Look for in an Amazon Consulting Service
Different Amazon consultants may offer a flurry of services or “advice”, some that may not even apply to you. Make sure you know what you’re looking for. Here are some key skills and expertise an Amazon consultant should bring to the table to help your Amazon retail business succeed:
Use a Product-Driven Approach
Ninety-five percent of shoppers read online reviews before making a purchase, and product reviews can lead to an 18% uplift in sales. Meanwhile, displaying reviews can increase conversion rates by 270%, and showing just five reviews can increase the likelihood of a customer making a purchase by almost 400%.
The most successful products on Amazon are the ones with many great customer reviews. You need to get as many 4- and 5-star reviews as possible. Implement a product-driven approach to your merchandise selection. Lead with high-quality items. Therefore you’ll achieve a high level of customer satisfaction and increase the likelihood that buyers will leave stellar reviews.
An Amazon consultant can help you in key ways. Such as understanding market demand, selecting high-quality products that sell, generating positive reviews, and building your reputation.
Conduct a Competitive Analysis
An accurate and comprehensive understanding of the competitive landscape can help you in many ways. You can effectively select the right products for your portfolio, devise a robust and competitive pricing strategy, position the products for the right audience, write compelling copy, and optimize your advertising campaigns to drive sales.
An Amazon consulting service can conduct a competitive analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of your competitors. This will help you identify key areas for improvement in your business.
Some key metrics a consultant should track and analyze include the number of reviews, pricing strategy, keyword optimization, sales data, and PPC strategy to help you understand the market and inform your Amazon sales strategy.
Optimize for Amazon SEO
To generate more sales on Amazon, you need to make sure that shoppers looking for the items you’re selling can find your listings. This means you need to rank high on relevant search results pages. Optimizing for the Amazon search algorithm, A9, is the key to increasing visibility and getting found organically by potential customers.
An Amazon consulting service can perform keyword research and optimize your listings for the appropriate search terms to improve the product listings’ rankings. It should also optimize the product titles, backend (or “hidden”) keywords, brand field, product description and bullet points, product pricing, product images, and reviews. This culminates in driving high-quality traffic to your product pages.
In addition, your Amazon consultant should analyze conversion data and regularly fine-tune your SEO strategy to maintain your rankings.
Implement an Amazon Paid Media Strategy
Amazon Sponsored Products can lead to a 10% conversion rate (compared to the 1-2% of Google Ads). It’s an effective tactic to help your listings get found by more shoppers and gain traction.
However, with increased competition, running Amazon Paid ads can get costly and eat into profit margins without an effective strategy. An experienced Amazon consulting service can optimize your Amazon PPC campaigns and maximize ROI.
For example, your consultant should test the different keyword match types, qualify search terms based on performance data such as advertising cost of sales (ACoS), click-through-rate (CTR), and cost-per-click (CPC). Then they should refine your bidding strategy, structure your campaigns for effective management, and leverage negative keywords. They need to do all this while optimizing your budget.
Final Thoughts: Selecting the Right Amazon Consultant
When selecting an Amazon strategy consulting service for your business, you should prioritize your needs and business objectives to identify a consultant that has the most relevant experience and skillsets. These include PPC, SEO/listing optimization, reviews, FBA, suspension appeals, legal services, and international expansion.
Your consultant should have experience working with your business type (e.g., brands and manufacturers, start-ups, private labelers, experienced or new sellers). They should also have an established process to ensure effective client communication.
During your evaluation process, ask for recommendations or case studies. You should also contact the candidates’ past or current clients to get details on what it’s working with them. Inquire about specific results and see if they match your expectations.
Last but not least, be sure to understand the pricing structure and what the consultant is committing to delivering so you can avoid surprises down the road. Have a contract set up and ask questions so you are both better prepared.