5 B2B Tech Brands That Really Need Help on Amazon

Tim Wilson

September 7, 2021

Whether you like it or not, if you’re a manufacturer selling a product in 2021, that product is going to end up on Amazon.

Online B2B sales platforms have seen explosive growth over the past few years, and sellers looking for opportunity are paying close attention, including your own VARs. VARs are flocking to Amazon to create product listings and sell products, but far too many of them have no idea what they’re doing.

While this might seem harmless, VARs who are thoughtless about their listings and ill-equipped to navigate Amazon can indirectly harm the reputation and growth of the brands they’re representing. Even the best B2B brands in the world are negatively impacted by VARs misrepresenting their products online.

So what’s the secret to avoiding that? It starts with knowing the difference between a good listing and a bad one.

What makes a good Amazon listing?

A brand with a good Amazon presence incorporates best practices into their listings. These are just a few of the best practices that can elevate a listing.

Keywords

Brands with good listings leverage their product title by including long-tail keywords that can put their product at the top of organic search rankings and reach customers who might not otherwise be able to find them on Amazon.

Bullet points

Many brands lose their buyers’ attention by having too much information cluttering their product descriptions. Great product descriptions incorporate bullet points, which are far more concise than big paragraphs and allow buyers to quickly scan listings for the most important information about a product.

Good reviews

Research shows that 84% of shoppers trust online reviews as much as a personal recommendation. That means that in order to stand out, you need to have product reviews and you need a customer experience so stellar that customers are more likely to leave good reviews. Good reviews can also be showcased on your listing to give other buyers the social proof that your product is worth buying.

Quality image stack

Less is most definitely not more when it comes to listing imagery. A good rule of thumb is to have around seven images in your stack that allow consumers to get a complete view of the product. A good listing also has high quality images.

3D renderings

Good listings give consumers a full view and understanding of the product, and a great way to do that is to include 3D renderings. 3D renderings make listings more eye-catching, and they also allow consumers to engage with products in the digital equivalent way to touching and feeling them in-store.

Video

Like 3D renderings, video is a fantastic way to engage customers and give them a full understanding of what your product will look like and how it will function once they have it in-hand. Think of it as one extra layer of trust and education.

Consistent and appropriate price

When a price on a product is too low, customers distrust it, and when it’s too high, customers won’t buy it. A good product listing has a reasonable price, and that price doesn’t change dramatically often, and doesn’t change drastically if buyers shop around between sites and physical retail locations.

5 brands that are doing product listings wrong

Now that you have an idea of what it looks like when a brand is doing listings right, here’s what it looks like when a brand is doing listings wrong.

Sonicwall

Sonicwall Amazon Product Listing

Sonicwall is a six-time award winner in the Network Product Guide’s 2020 IT World Awards, but looking at this particular lack-lustre listing for their Network Security Appliance, you wouldn’t know it. For starters, this listing lacks the long-tailed keywords we mentioned previously that brands need to rank on page one of the Amazon search results. That means that potential new customers who don’t know about Sonicwall likely aren’t finding their product on Amazon. This listing also only has one product image instead of the seven which is considered best practice, and it lacks the necessary bullet points and descriptions needed to educate Sonicwall customers.

Cisco

Cisco Amazon Product Listing

Bad listings aren’t a problem reserved for small and little-known brands. Some of the best B2B tech brands in the world struggle with their listings. This particular example comes from a B2B brand well known for their product excellence: Cisco.

In the listing above we can see that there’s a bit more information about the product than in Sonicwall’s listing, but not much. While they have three images in their stack, all of those images appear to be the exact same image, giving customers a limited understanding of the product.

But the biggest issue with this particular product listing is the price. Historically, pricing on this listing has been all over the place and in no way consistent with MAP. Inconsistent pricing is a very common issue on Amazon, because the lowest price tends to be the one that “wins the buy box” or gets the sale on Amazon, but this is a misrepresentation of the brand and their image.

Axis

Axis Amazon Product Listing

The issues with this listing from Axis are pretty obvious. Although they have a great product rating, the page gives very little information in the way of educating their consumers. The imagery only shows the packaging and, like the Cisco example above, all of the images are duplicates. There is a lot to be desired in the way of customer experience.

Fortinet

Fortinet Amazon Product Listing

Fortinet shares similar problems with the last three brands. On this product listing, they only have one image, and they’ve committed the cardinal listing image sin: it’s blurry. There is not much in the way of product description or bullet points, the pricing is less than MAP, and the product doesn’t have any reviews, leaving consumers with very little information on why they should choose Fortinet over competitors.

HP

HP Amazon Product Listing

HP is another well-known brand that has an underwhelming Amazon listing. Even though this Print Server is high ranking in search results—you can see from the URL that its search rank is row one, slot three—the listing itself has some issues that render that ranking almost useless for the brand. They need to get more reviews, the majority of the few reviews they have are poor, they only have one image in their stack, and they also have no product description. Shoppers might be able to find this product on Amazon, but they won’t know anything about it and won’t be convinced to buy.

These examples, all from fantastic B2B tech brands, really depict the issue we see in the B2B ecommerce market. All of these brands have put time, effort, and money behind protecting their brand and its image, but because their products are listed on Amazon, and most likely not managed by a VAR with marketplace experience, the brand is cheapened and looks second-rate instead of the first class prestige these brands are known for.

Get a VAR with expert Amazon experience

Working with a VAR who understands Amazon well and knows how to leverage listings is key to doing well on the platform, and Pattern can be that VAR for your brand. At Pattern, we’re Amazon experts who work with brands to provide an exceptional customer experience across online channels. We consolidate every support tool and consultation you need into one package that includes marketing, SEO, shipping, customer experience, and marketplace expertise, saving you money and helping you grow your business.

To learn how Pattern can help your B2B tech brand create dazzling listings and grow online, get a custom demo for more information.

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Sept 27, 2022

Global Ecommerce Weekly News: 27th September 2022

Get up to date with this week's ecommerce headlines from around the globe. --- Amazon News --- Amazon drives renewable energy push with 71 new projects Amazon is planning to add 2.7 gigawatts of clean energy capacity through a couple of new projects as the company attempts to use 100% renewable energy by 2025. The ecommerce business will soon have a total of 329 renewable energy projects, generating 50,000 gigawatt hours of clean energy, which is equivalent to powering 4.6 million US homes every year. [Read more on Reuters](https://www.reuters.com/business/sustainable-business/amazon-drives-renewable-energy-push-with-71-new-projects-2022-09-21/) Amazon launches Prime Early Access Sale Amazon is launching a new 2-day shopping event for its Prime members only, beginning on the 11th of October. Across 15 countries, Prime customers will have access to the shopping event, with thousands of deals on offer globall, ranging from fashion to electronics to essentials. The event has the purpose of giving Prime users the chance to spread the cost of items over the winter months, 6 weeks ahead of Black Friday. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/26/prime-early-access-sale/) --- Other Marketplace News --- Shopify unveils new localisation tool Shopify is launching a new localisation tool, called Translate & Adapt, which works with Shopify Markets to offer localisation for sellers who are looking to expand into new markets. The tool translates a user’s online store into different languages, including product pages and information pages. Merchants are also able to create different shipping terms for each market using the new tool, which allows international expansion and offers a more localised consumer experience, unveiling new potential. [Read more on Ecommerce News](https://ecommercenews.eu/shopify-launches-new-localisation-tool/) Etsy is set to invest hundreds of millions into its marketing platform Etsy CEO claims that the company is on route to spend more than $570 million USD on marketing this year. Even during a time of macroeconomic pressure, inflation and rising interest rates, the company is preparing itself and its sellers for the upcoming holiday season and is focused on retaining interest from buyers. [Read more on Yahoo News](https://uk.news.yahoo.com/etsy-600-million-on-marketing-ceo-154054219.html) --- Other Ecommerce News --- Meta looks to cut costs by 10% in the coming months Meta employees are facing job redundancies as the company plans to cut its costs by 10% over the next few months. Meta reported a 22% YoY increase in costs and expenses, totalling over $20 billion USD. The cuts are expected to come in the form of job redundancies as a result of department reorganisations rather than formal layoffs. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/22/meta-to-slash-costs-by-10-over-coming-months/) DHL teams up with Quadient to offer smart locker deliveries in the UK DHL and tech company, Quadient, have partnered to offer smart lockers parcel pick-up throughout the UK. The new contactless, secure locker stations will give recipients more choice and flexibility to receive their parcels at a time and location best suited to them. The partnership plans to install 500 locker stations across the country by the end of 2022. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/21/dhl-partners-with-quadient-to-offer-smart-locker-delivery/) The online fashion market is set to be worth nearly $170 billion USD in 2025 The European online fashion retail market is set to grow 50% by 2025, with an online turnover of $170 billion USD, which is 33% of the retail branch’s total. Cross-border marketplaces prove to be the largest drivers of this growth, with online websites and apps like Vinted largely pushing the market’s online growth. Zalando recently became the largest cross-border fashion retailer/marketplace, responsible for 11.7% of the online market’s share. [Read more on Ecommerce News](https://ecommercenews.eu/online-fashion-market-worth-e175-billion-in-2025/)
Sept 26, 2022

Top 5 Ways to Prepare for Peak with Google Ads

Peak season is almost upon us and with all signs pointing to it starting earlier than ever, with Christmas gifting searches now ramping up in August and September, it’s time to start preparing for peak. In this article, we’re sharing our top five tips for planning and preparing for peak season with Google Ads and the strategies required to get your Paid Search ready so you can drive success over this crucial period.

1. Go Early

In 2021, gifting search terms started increasing in popularity in August. The general trend is that people are looking, researching and weighing their options early, so it’s best to start your Paid activity early to ensure that you’re capturing that early research traffic. This will help drive revenue alongside aiding those consumers who are in their research phase.

From 2020 to 2021, spend during Cyber Week actually only rose 2% but in the weeks leading up to it, it increased by 16%. However, Cyber Week is still the biggest period during the latter half of the year, accounting for 23% of all online spend by consumers over peak. Being prepared and starting early will help you to maximise your time during this period.

2. Get Ready for Privacy Changes

 According to Google, 48% of global consumers have stopped buying or using a service due to privacy concerns. Privacy is front of mind when consumers are shopping online and we know that Google is phasing out 3rd party cookies in 2023. This is going to make it much harder to track users online and it’s something that brands need to think about this now – waiting isn’t an option.

From a Google Ads point of view, you want to ensure you have set up the Google Ads tag across your site and have enabled ‘Enhanced Conversions’, which ensures all conversions are tracked and allows you to monitor other actions such as ‘Add to Cart.’ This is relatively easy to set up, especially if you use ‘Google Tag Manager’.

It’s also vitally important that you build up your first-party data during this time as this is data you own and it can be used when targeting consumers that have provided your brand with their email address. Pattern’s own experience shows that by segmenting and using first-party data, you can see a 10% improvement in revenue and ROI.

3. Ensure Consumers Can Discover your Brand

A full-funnel approach is now more important than ever as consumers become more discerning and have more choices than ever of where to shop.

Pattern has seen success with Google Ads’ ‘Discovery Campaigns’ (image-based ads that appear on Google platforms such as Gmail and the Google app), which have driven success both from a traffic and revenue perspective.

The performance of these campaigns is significantly enhanced by adopting a segmented and nuanced approach to first-party data and incorporating these into your campaigns. Other options for a full-funnel approach include YouTube and testing bidding on keywords that are more representative of the research phase. (e.g. ‘best baby clothes’ for a baby clothes brand)

4. Get Moving with Performance Max

Earlier this year, Google announced that they were moving away from Smart Shopping and launched Performance Max. This is a new campaign type that incorporates features and placements from Smart Shopping but expands them onto other platforms such as Gmail but also alternative creative options, such as images and videos.

Since Google has already started automatically upgrading Smart Shopping campaigns to Performance Max, expect to see some fluctuations in the first 2 weeks following the switch over but results generally seem positive. We recommend upgrading sooner rather than later to limit any potential impact to peak period.

5. Flight Budgets Accordingly

Peak period will be even more competitive than in 2021 and you’ll need your budgets to support this period, we recommend boosting budgets in October to start capturing that early peak traffic. As we enter November and the Cyber Period, start early and make sure you are capturing those consumers looking for early bargains, ensuring you are being nimble in your optimisations and reacting to the data that you are seeing.

Overall, peak period is vital to help drive your sales and by preparing early, you will see strong results and drive success for your brand. If you want to discuss how your brand can navigate this next peak period, contact us to discuss your options with our performance team now.

Sept 20, 2022

4 Ecommerce Marketplace Consultant Must-Haves

Entering the ecommerce landscape is a huge undertaking for any brand—it usually requires a large investment in resources and expertise to really be successful. Any brand can quickly get in over their heads trying to navigate the nuances of SEO, fulfillment and logistics, distribution control, listing optimization, and meeting the numerous other requirements and administrative tasks to show up well on marketplaces. 

Unfortunately, because it’s so easy for third party, gray market, and unauthorized sellers to obtain and sell products online, many brands find themselves pressured to execute an ecommerce plan without the right resources to succeed on marketplaces and their other channels.

So, for brands looking to enter the ecommerce space or improve their current and future performance, it makes sense to partner with an ecommerce consultant.

Pattern’s global presence and proven success with hundreds of brands has allowed us to develop highly effective ecommerce consulting services. We can guide your brand to navigate issues both large and small in marketplaces worldwide. To maximize your ecommerce efforts, you’ll need to understand what an ecommerce consultant does and how to select one who drives the right value for your brand and products. 

What is an Ecommerce Consultant?

An ecommerce consultant is a specialist in the ecommerce space who can give you personalized guidance on how to market your products and grow their presence on digital marketplaces.

An ecommerce consultant should be able to analyze your brand, audience, category, opportunity, and current roadblocks and help you understand how to utilize your resources (or what resources are missing) to be most effective in capturing your opportunities in the ecommerce space.

Not sure how to evaluate a consultant? Here are 4 key attributes to look for as you make your choice.

1. Brand Obsession/Specialization/Passion

At Pattern, we prioritize brand obsession for a reason—we know that a brand-centered mindset makes a crucial difference in the outcomes and results our partners achieve. So in our experience, when you begin your search for an ecommerce consultant, it’s important to look for a partner who is specialized in ecommerce, invested in the product, and passionate about helping brands build and improve their strategies. Typically, this means finding someone that consults exclusively for ecommerce marketplaces, rather than choosing a consultant who offers many different services. 

2. Proven Results

It’s also important to avoid choosing a consulting partner who can’t deliver the right experience for your brand. The best indication of whether your potential consultant can do that is to review their history, data, and results with other brands. Ask if they’ve helped others in your selling category, if they’ve solved specific issues your brand is facing, and why they feel you are a good fit. The key is to leave the conversation feeling confident that you understand your consultants’ capabilities and whether or not they match up with your needs.

3. Wide Range of Marketplace Expertise

It’s best to pick a consultant who knows how to guide a brand onto and through multiple marketplaces worldwide. You’ll want to take a look at your long-term strategy and think about the regions and platforms you’re currently on and where you might want to take your brand in the future. If your consultant is truly great at what they do, they’ll be able to help you perform well enough with your current product roadmap that it’ll be a no-brainer to expand your presence at the right time.

4. Network of Resources

The most effective partnership with an ecommerce consultant will be able to give you both recommendations and point you to solutions for making those changes in your planning, processes, and execution. Your time and money is valuable, so you want to make sure that you’re spending it as efficiently as possible as you follow your consultant’s advice. So, before you commit to an ecommerce consultant, ask about the resources and concrete solutions they typically recommend to the brands they work with.

Achieve Your Ecommerce Goals With Pattern

Finding an ecommerce consultant that checks the boxes can be a difficult task. At Pattern, our entire focus and drive centers around giving brands the tools and resources they need to succeed on domestic and international ecommerce marketplaces. 

With over 100 global ecommerce consultants across 10 global offices, we have the right tools to partner with brands across the world to achieve better ecommerce success. We give specialized advice, then make sure our partners have all the adequate SEO, social media, CRM, Amazon multi-channel fulfillment services, and ecommerce outsourcing services they need.

Interested in ecommerce consulting services? Set up a call here to learn what Pattern can do for your brand on global marketplaces.