New to selling on Amazon? We've compiled the top 9 mistakes that we see sellers making in 2022. Check them out here!
June 29, 2022
Selling on Amazon is hard work, and it’s a very popular industry. Because this commerce platform has become so popular, there’s bound to be a good number of sellers doing it wrong. As a company dedicated to helping people succeed in this space, we want to make sure that’s not you! Let’s unpack the top 9 mistakes you should avoid when selling on Amazon.
Nine Mistakes Amazon Sellers Need to Avoid at All Costs
Here at EcomHub, we’ve been building, launching, and scaling successful Amazon stores for close to a decade. Along the way, we’ve learned a few things that can doom an Amazon seller to failure. These 9 Amazon seller mistakes can majorly put you at a disadvantage - so avoid these at all costs!
Inadequate Product Research
Product research is one of the most important elements of creating a successful Amazon store (or any store, for that matter).
Because the market is so oversaturated, it’s critical that you strike a balance between finding a popular niche with room to grow while still avoiding over-saturated niches with no room for new competition.
In order to do this, you must take the time to complete professional product research before you jump into creating a brand/storefront. This takes time and effort. It requires an understanding of the current marketplace and the modern shopper. Do not simply pick the first product that comes to mind. Just because you think it’s a great idea doesn’t mean it is. Let the research be the foundation of your final product decision.
Incomplete Listing Development
Successful listings are simple - but require a lot of work. Amazon is a competitive marketplace. One cannot simply fill in a commonplace title, write a generic description, add a couple of photos, and expect the listing to do well.
A good listing requires keyword research, marketplace research, optimized descriptions, professional photography, product videos, beautiful infographics, and even Amazon A+ Content. This requires time, energy, and financial investment.
All the successful sellers on Amazon are taking the time to create quality listings. If you want to compete with them, you must do the same from your Amazon seller account.
Not Using FBA
Unless you’re selling handmade items, you should be using Amazon FBA. FBM sellers have a very difficult time competing with the free, Prime delivery options that Amazon FBA offers to sellers and customers alike.
Some sellers attempt to save on inventory costs, storage fees, and seller fees by going the FBM route. If you choose to do this, you’ll likely miss out on more sales than you are saving in reduced fees. Use FBA. It’s the best choice for the modern Amazon seller.
Poor Inventory Management
No matter what your fulfillment method is, it’s critical that your product is always in stock. Listings suffer when business owners have poor inventory management.
You will see a reduction in organic traffic if your product is consistently low-stock. If you run out of inventory or constantly have a wait time, customers will be discouraged from buying your product and will choose a competitor item.
It’s 2022. Anyone selling on Amazon at this point needs to be on top of their inventory and ensure that they do not run out of products at any time - especially before major sales and holidays.
Poor Customer Service
Many Amazon sellers overlook customer service without realizing this can damage the health of their listing. Bad customer service often leads to bad reviews, which clearly detracts from your listing health and erodes trust with new customers.
New and existing Amazon sellers need to be sure to stay on top of:
- Answering any customer/potential customer questions in the “Ask a Question” portion of their listing.
- Addressing negative reviews by reaching out to customers, righting any wrongs in their order, and ensuring you’ve done everything possible to keep them happy.
- Responding to any and all customer communications
The oldest rule in retail is this: the customer is always right. Good customer service respects both existing and potential customers and does everything possible to address their concerns reasonably. And to ensure customer satisfaction, you have to gather customer feedback and customer inquiries and work on them. Failing to do so will affect future customers and organic traffic.
Incomplete Launch Strategy
Just like creating your listing takes work, putting it out into the world takes work, too. There is a strategy behind an effective launch that many Amazon sellers fail to realize.
New sellers are so eager to get their listing live as quickly as possible that they rush every step, skipping the research phase, creating a generic listing, and then launching it prematurely and without any planning.
This leads to a listing that flops. In order to create an effective listing that ranks well and meets customers where they are, you must do all the backend legwork to ensure this can happen. That includes the research and development strategies we’ve already discussed, as well as enrolling in the proper Amazon programs (like Amazon Vine), setting up coupons/discounts, using PPC campaigns, and relying on social media ads to get new customers.
If you don’t create this strategy before launching your listing, you will have a much harder time getting the sales you need to profit.
Poor Marketing Strategy
Another piece of every Amazon business requiring strategy is digital marketing. The modern customer is exposed to around 10,000 ads every day. If you want to add your product to those 10,000 ads, you ought to have a clear strategy based on solid market research.
Many Amazon sellers go in blind - assuming they’ll be able to just “figure out” the best way to use Amazon PPC, social media, and other digital advertising. Spoiler alert: this does not lead to successful advertising.
If you want your own brand to surpass the thousands of other sellers who are on Amazon’s marketplace, you need to invest in a quality, multi-platform marketing strategy.
Using Outdated Methods to Obtain Reviews
Reviews are essential to your listing. Without them, it’s next to impossible to get organic traffic and difficult to convince new customers to trust your brand.
It used to be much easier to get these reviews. However, Amazon has tightened up its rules surrounding how sellers can get reviews. There are plenty of sellers who are still trying to use black-hat methods to buy reviews despite Amazon’s rules against it. These sellers are usually caught, and their listings suffer as a consequence.
As a new seller, you must use Amazon-approved methods to get your reviews. Step one to positive reviews? Sell a product you’re proud of. Register your brand. Join Amazon Vine. And politely ask your customers for reviews with kind inserts.
Not Structuring the Business Legally
Another mistake that Amazon sellers make is forgoing any formal business registration. For your best chance at success, you want to ensure that you have taken all the steps necessary to protect yourself and your assets and set your business up well.
This means keeping business/personal expenses separate, setting a sales price, determining actual sales and profit margins, advertising costs, paying all required taxes, setting up an LLC, and registering your brand formally with Amazon. It takes more time to do this, but it will pay off in the long term.
Running an Amazon store is not something to do on a whim. It requires an investment of your time, energy, and finances. To start selling right is much harder on the front end than to do it fast - but the return on your investment is greater. Take the time to build your store correctly and avoid these 9 mistakes if you are serious about succeeding as an Amazon seller!
Julia Grant is a copywriter specializing in e-commerce and small business, helping businesses expand their reach with copy that clearly communicates their message and converts. She is a certified translator and interpreter and prides herself on providing culturally relevant content in both English and Spanish.See more posts from this author