Many online retailers have this same question— Should I be selling my products on Amazon?
There are certainly pros and cons to this option. It doesn’t have to be black and white, but you can make your way around it so as to maximize the advantages for your business.
Take a look at these things you ought to consider first before making a decision…
- Type of Product
One of your biggest considerations is the type of product you intend to offer or you’re thinking of selling on Amazon. Is it searchable?
If this is a unique product that cannot be found elsewhere, then it’s probably better not to sell it on Amazon. First, it might not be easily searchable on Google and other search engines because you’re still introducing it to the market. Second, it’s better to use it as an exclusive advantage to drive people to your site. If this product becomes popular eventually or if it’s really, really good, customers will flock to your website for it!
On the other hand, what you can also do is offer it on Amazon for a limited time just to make it known first to more people. This is only for added exposure, then you can eventually just offer it on your site so as to maintain branding and be able to gather customer information. What’s more, you’ll enjoy higher profit margin if you sell it direct.
- Profit Margin
You must certainly take into account your profit margin. Since Amazon takes a significant percentage of your profits, you have to be sure that your sales will still give you acceptable net profits.
The danger here is what’s called cannibalization. What if you end up destroying your own sales on your own website because of your Amazon posting? You might cannibalize your direct sales and lose more money in the long haul. So be sure to study and compute carefully before deciding to sell on Amazon too.
What you can do here is to just offer specific products on Amazon which you feel may be more sellable on this platform. Don’t build competition with your own online store, so that you can maximize both sales.
If you have products that you’re still introducing to the market or those that are mostly ignored on your website, then you can try selling them on Amazon for a while. Or maybe your site is known for a certain type of product so others are not given much attention here. In such case, you can also move these products to Amazon or a similar marketplace.
- Site Traffic
Amazon can undoubtedly produce remarkable traffic daily, with millions of visitors all around the world. Hence, if this is something that you feel you still lack on your site, it might be a good idea to offer your products on Amazon while you’re also working on your own site traffic.
- Site Speed
You should also consider the speed of your own website. If it isn’t that good, maybe putting your site first will not serve the best purposes for you.
In this case, it would be beneficial to place some or more of your products on Amazon even if just for the time being.
Of course Amazon is a really huge marketplace that’s very, very popular. Their loading speed is excellent, which can work to your advantage. It will not only help produce sales, but it can make your brand known. And as your profits pick up, you should invest in better technology for your own website so that you’ll eventually be able to improve page loading speed and other functionalities on your site.
- User Experience
Don’t take user experience for granted, because this counts a lot when it comes to the satisfaction and happiness of customers. It also plays a major role in conversion rate.
If you’re a high-end brand, it may not be so good to offer your products on Amazon. This is because on this platform, they will not have the same experience. Meanwhile, on your site, they can enjoy the unique experience that your style, functions, navigation tools, etc. can give. For instance, if you’re selling watches, maybe you have a special comparison tool in your site that Amazon cannot provide. Or maybe you have videos that can enhance the overall shopping experience for your customers. And of course the whole look and feel of the site will also be different.
What’s more, shoppers who buy your products from Amazon will not have direct access to your customer service or to your other services. This will make things more complicated.
Try to think of the wide range of competing brands on Amazon. This is definitely a big disadvantage to selling your products here. The customers will not be able to concentrate on your brand alone.
Furthermore, they will often be tempted to leave your product page and move on to other similar products by other sellers. In choosing add-ons too, the sales won’t always go to you. For example, a person might buy a crib from you and get the beddings by another brand. On the other hand, if he or she was on your site, the attention will be drawn to the products that you are also upselling and cross-selling.
One of the goals of online business owners is to engage customers in order to connect more with them. If you want to have raving followers and buyers, then it’s important to engage your customers all the time.
If your products are just available on your own site, you have more control over the process. You’re more likely to engage them with your own brand without distractions. You can also encourage them to stay longer and browse around more. This can boost the relationship with customers while motivating them to buy more from you or to keep coming back.
Should I Be Selling Products on Amazon?
So now we go back to this same question. If you’re still a little confused and you’re not yet sure of your answer, then review the above-given considerations and go over them in terms of your own business situation.
It works different for each retailer. Of course you can also take calculated experiments when it comes to selling on Amazon. Just remember that it doesn’t have to be a “one size fits all” solution. You could work out a compromise, such as choosing just a set of products to offer on Amazon while the rest of your products are only available in your own eCommerce store.