It’s been over a month since Amazon Australia’s overnight launch on December 5, 2017. Contrary to popular belief, the doomsday talk has not eventuated - Australian retailers still live to tell the tale and those at the forefront of their fields, are embracing Amazon’s entry into the local market and opening their Amazon stores ahead of their competitors.
Reality is, if you’re a retailer who can ship a product in a box to your customers, you need to be investigating how you can tap into Amazon Australia. Make no mistake, the US retail giant is only getting started Down Under and while things have gotten off to a slow start, we’re talking about a company who’s led the way in ecommerce since the ‘90s.
If your business is guilty of closing its eyes, in the hope that Amazon will go away, don’t! We have the statistics out of the U.S. that show that nearly 50% of shoppers go to Amazon before any other brick and mortar or online retail store. Here’s how to work alongside Amazon to drive customers to your business to maximise your profits.
Create an Amazon store
Getting listed on Amazon can be challenging. Once you’ve created a seller account, you need to ensure that your products are listed in the right categories so that your target market can find you. When creating your listings, take full advantage of the 250 character allowance, use keywords strategically and don’t forget about those all important photos. You need to ensure you’re displaying high quality images that accurately reflect your brand.
Many people are prone to looking at visuals online before reading anything. If you are struggling to get going, it’s best to reach out for professional help to ensure you can truly maximise the potential of your Amazon store.
Spread the word widely
Being associated with Amazon automatically builds credibility. Ideally, you want to be among the first (if not, the first) in your industry to open up an Amazon store. You benefit from global reach, access to millions of shoppers around the world instantly and you might just find that some shoppers, who already know your brand exist, start paying a lot more attention. While your motivation should always be to get people shopping via your website directly if you have an ecommerce store, reality is, we know that some people choose to shop via Amazon only.
Instead of fighting against shoppers who love the convenience of finding everything they’re after in one place, work alongside them. Use whatever marketing methods you have at your fingertips - social media, your email database and don’t forget to ask shoppers to review your products. There’s nothing like a 5 star rating to get a potential customer over the line and remember, you will need to monitor and manage any negative reviews as that will take its toll in the long-term.
Enable integration with your existing site
The brilliant thing about Amazon is that it really levels the playing field for smaller retailers who haven’t been able to keep up with the demands of technology in terms of maintaining an ecommerce site. If you’re already operating an online store, consider what this means to your business holistically.
Software is available to ensure that any sales made via Amazon, sync with your existing ecommerce solution and back of house so take advantage of the technology at your fingertips. If you don’t plan ahead, you might just find your business in a sticky situation trying to manage your website and Amazon store separately. Doing so isn’t productive and is destined to make your team’s life harder.
The sooner your business stops working against the wind and embraces the possibilities Amazon Australia presents, the closer you are to gaining more customers via a third party platform. While nothing may have appeared to change on the surface, Amazon’s entry into Australia is likely to be a game-changer in the long-term. Only time will tell what that may mean in 2018 and beyond.
Chris Stolke is the Manager and Head Digital Strategist at Pronto Woven, a unique one stop digital marketing solution provider for everything including integrated ecommerce solutions. Chris is passionate about guiding businesses of all sizes towards a sensible and innovative approach in terms of managing their Digital Strategy.