Whether you’re new to the Amazon space or you’re looking to increase your sales on Amazon by starting to advertise – every seller knows, advertising costs money. Nobody wants to waste valuable advertising resources on products that aren’t ready to advertise, so here’s a guide to help you know when your products are in the best position to do so.
Start with preliminary questions
Before jumping in and getting your campaign started - you need to ask some important qualifying questions:
- How much ad spend am I willing to put into advertising?
- Is there a point where advertising will stop making sense for me?
- Can I support an influx in inventory demands?
- Am I winning enough of the buy box to support campaigns?
These preliminary questions will help shape your advertising strategy from a very high level. Maybe you’ve discovered you can only support increased inventory demands on a few products, or maybe you are winning the buy box 50% of the time. These questions can help you think through spend, goals, and expectations. Once those items are figured out, the shopper journey is where we need to turn to next.
Think like a shopper
There are a couple exercises you can try to get into the right mindset.
First, find a product you need in your life, maybe it’s a new hose or maybe it’s a sweater. Then, take a look at those products online as if you would be buying one today and observe their detail pages. Is the imagery good? Does it give you an accurate representation of what the product might look like? Do the informational bullet points describe the product and its uses in detail? Would you buy this product right now? If yes, write down the reasons why and compare those reasons to your own detail pages. If no, think about how to avoid the reasons why not.
Get into the head of your average shopper or your target audience and click into one of your own product pages. What are they thinking? What are they looking at? Is it hitting all the points that make your product special? If not, it might need a bit of a refresh!
Below is a perfect example of this. A simple search for “water hose” brings up many listings, but clicking on two different hose offerings can tell us so much.
The one above is packaged up in a box with no indication of what the hose actually looks like. No extra images or bullet points to help a shopper understand what they are purchasing. Below, we have a great example of how powerful imagery and bullet points can educate the shopper.
Check your reviews
Are you seeing hundreds or maybe thousands of reviews coming in for your product? If not - not to worry! Most products don’t, but reviews are one of the keystones of the success of Amazon. According to our fellow friend at Pattern, Cassandra Shaffer says "Approximately 95% of consumers read reviews before making a purchase, and a whopping 68% of consumers form an opinion on a product after only reading between 1 and 6 online reviews.”
That being said, of course good reviews highly influence conversion. When spending valuable and even sometimes scarce advertising resources - making sure your products have high reviewer ratings can build automatic trust in your product or brand and increase sales exponentially. Advertising may also have the side effect of getting more review on your product so the two work hand in hand.
On the flip side, see if you have any bad reviews. Pay attention to the feedback in these reviews and see if there is anything you need to fix about your listing or product. Maybe many customers are unhappy with the difference in the color your product appears in your listing images and the color of the actual product when it arrives. You can remedy this going forward by taking new, high-quality images of your products that better display the color.
Double check your detail pages
Take a good look at your detail pages. Do they have strong bullet points? Are they engaging and easy to read? Bullet points make it easy for your target audience to skim and find the information they care about the most, making them one of the best ways to convert a customer over to your product. Short, thought-out bullet points can also help advertising as you can focus on using similar keywords found in the details page to bid on in advertising. This increases relevancy in your ads.
Perfect your imagery
Good imagery is key for success on Amazon. Shoppers don’t have the luxury of feeling and holding the product, so they rely heavily on images to supplement that. A variety of images is best to showcase your product. Show size, features, textures and more. Pattern has taken on this challenge with many products, including products that aren’t supposed to be seen.
All of these components of your product, or ASIN, complete the checklist that shows if your products are, what we call, "Retail Ready." In most cases, if your items check all the boxes for being “Retail Ready” they are also set up to succeed with higher conversion rate, less confusion among shoppers, and higher sales. When a shopper comes to your detail page you want it to look, feel, and sound like your brand. But on top of that, this optimization can actually support and maximize your advertising efforts.
After looking through the points above, you’ll have a better idea if your product is ready to be advertised. Ask yourself if your product truly meets the requirements of each section. This can be a hard question to answer if advertising excites you. However, use your advertising sources wisely and use them in ways that will benefit you the most. Advertising can be wildly successful on Amazon but you want to build a strong foundation with the basics before you pay to bring people to pages that aren’t ready to maximize conversions.
Want to learn more about prepping your products and listings for advertising? Contact us today.