Winamp Logo
Serious Sellers Podcast: Learn How To Sell On Amazon Cover
Serious Sellers Podcast: Learn How To Sell On Amazon Profile

Serious Sellers Podcast: Learn How To Sell On Amazon

English, Finance, 269 seasons, 720 episodes, 2 days, 14 hours, 36 minutes
About
Sell on Amazon FBA the right way with Serious Sellers Podcast. Join our host Bradley Sutton as he puts together top industry experts, the latest trends, and rock-solid advice. This new take on the AM/PM Podcast formula equips sellers with the info they need to stay ahead and crush it in the ever-changing Amazon marketplace. No mincing words or hype here! Just hard Amazon-compliant data and experience-driven tips, tricks, and information from the team behind the most advanced Amazon software tools - Helium 10. If you’re a serious Amazon entrepreneur; learn how to do it right with proven methods to re-vamp your Amazon product research, keyword research, listing optimization, PPC marketing, product launches, and review generation strategies. New episodes every Tuesday and Saturday. Be there.
Episode Artwork

#580 - Reddit and Exit Strategies from an 8-Figure Amazon Seller

Have you ever wondered how to conquer competitive markets without relying on PPC? In our latest episode, Melisa Vong, a Serial E-commerce Entrepreneur & Investor, returns after nearly three years to share her journey of exiting two successful brands in the beauty and supplement niches using innovative strategies. She dives into her unique approach of utilizing Reddit for Amazon sellers and stresses the importance of a diverse product catalog. Melisa also unveils her rapid product launch methodology, which employs extensive A/B split testing to constantly refine and improve her tactics. But Melisa's entrepreneurial flair doesn't stop there. She takes us on an exciting detour into the world of escape rooms, revealing how her Amazon-selling success funded this new venture. Melisa talks about why she chose to become a franchisee instead of starting from scratch, and the benefits of partnering with an established brand to manage logistics and technology. She opens up about the investment required and how a side hustle turned into an unexpected career opportunity at the franchise's head office. We also explore cutting-edge marketing strategies for e-commerce, including the use of Advite.ai to monitor Reddit threads for promotional opportunities. Melisa highlights how personalized branding can set you apart in crowded markets and discusses innovative tactics like Google redirects to drive external traffic to Amazon listings. Tune in for a wealth of practical tips and inspiring entrepreneurial insights, and find out how to connect with Melisa online to keep the conversation going. In episode 580 of the Serious Sellers Podcast, Bradley and Melisa discuss: 03:47 - Success in the Competitive Supplement Market on Amazon 10:12 - The Impact of Creative Marketing 11:37 - Franchise Escape Room Side Business Discussion 13:43 - Potential Partnership Opportunity With A Game Company 18:11 - Melisa's Passion Project 22:26 - Innovative Marketing Strategies for E-Commerce 22:30 - Reddit Strategy 26:23 - Label Variation for Product Packaging 28:21 - Enhancing Customer Engagement With AI 30:40 - Heat Maps Strategy 32:18 - Targeting Dog Breeds for Marketing 33:29 - Networking and Escape Room Fun ► Instagram: instagram.com/serioussellerspodcast ► Free Amazon Seller Chrome Extension: https://h10.me/extension ► Sign Up For Helium 10: https://h10.me/signup  (Use SSP10 To Save 10% For Life) ► Learn How To Sell on Amazon: https://h10.me/ft ► Watch The Podcasts On YouTube: youtube.com/@Helium10/videos Transcript Bradley Sutton: Today, we've got Melissa back on the show who's going to talk about how she's exited a couple of brands. She's had success in competitive niches without even using PPC. She's got a cool Reddit strategy for Amazon sellers and now how she's using her Amazon income to start an escape room business. How cool is that? Pretty cool, I think. Bradley Sutton: Hello, everybody! And welcome to another episode of the Serious Sellers Podcast by Helium 10. I am your host, Bradley Sutton, and this is the show. That's a completely BS-free, unscripted and unrehearsed organic conversation about serious strategies for serious sellers of any level in the e-commerce world. Serious sellers of any level in the e-commerce world. I just had somebody recently on the show. I forgot who it was, but I was like man. It's been like forever since you've been on the show. It might be a record. Well, whatever it was for him or her, you have broken that record because I'm looking at my notes from Mel here and the last time you were on the show was 2021. So almost three years in between I've been trying to get you back. Melissa, you're just so hard to get a hold of. You're such a busy, busy boss lady. Anyways, how's it been going? Melisa: I know. I'm so sorry it's been a while but I'm excited to be back and thank you for your persistence and your patience with me. You know what they say the fortune's in the follow-up. So there you nailed that. But I've been awesome, you know, keeping busy not just Amazon, but kind of just dabbling in different worlds, and it's been fun, yeah. Bradley Sutton: Yeah, we're definitely going to talk about some of that stuff. You know I follow you vicariously a little bit through Instagram. It's kind of interesting to see some of the things that are going on your side. We're definitely going to dive into that. But if anybody wants to get more of Melissa's backstory, we're not going to completely rehash it here. Check out episodes 111 and also episode 302. All right, so episode 111, episode 302, you could learn a lot about her history and actually, one of the, were you in the? I don't think you had exited at the time in 2021, had you exited that? Was it a supplement brand or a beauty brand that you were doing back then? Melisa: So I exited a beauty brand and then also the following year exited in a supplement category, so still currently selling in supplements. I think when we last spoke, we did close out our exit. Bradley Sutton: What kind of beauty products was it? Melisa: So it's like natural and organic skincare. So things like castor oil. I know we've talked about it a couple times in previous so it's like vitamin c serum skincare. You know, moisturizers. Bradley Sutton: I'm all into that kind of stuff. As I get older, you know, like I've been, I've been going like I got it here on my desk been going heavily into k-beauty products. I got these products called Be Wants and it's funny because I always talk about collagen peptides on my podcast and stuff right, this is like collagen lifting cream, collagen essence toner the secret to looking like I do when I have a 23 year old daughter. So there it is Korean beauty products. That's the secret. Bradley Sutton: Now that, you know, beauty products and supplements are cliché as far as the most difficult things to break into. And then, of course, oh, maybe you, you know, somebody might say, oh yeah, she had a beauty brand. Maybe she started when it wasn't so, it wasn't so competitive, way back when, and that's how she was able to exit. But right after that, you said you went into supplements and were so successful. What's some of your secrets? Melisa: Yeah, obviously everyone kind of thinks that supplements is this weird and uncharted territory and it really is. It's a whole different ballgame in terms of how competitive it is, but from not just a black hat, you know perspective, because there are a lot of things that people will do to try to bring you down and it's unfortunate. But sometimes it's just about having a very wide catalog and just having you know a number of different products rather than just relying on one cash cow because then if you only have like one, really you know one real cash cow product that's bringing in all the money, if it goes down, then you're kind of screwed. So we kind of had to move quickly when it came to launches. So it was just speed to market. Just every quarter we were launching you know three, four new products, just consistently. And that gave us a lot of practice on launches and figuring out okay, what's working, what's not working. So we were able to kind of figure out and do a lot of AB split testing and see, okay, now we have like an actual template that we can work off of. Melisa: And supplements is one of those easy things where really you don't have to reinvent the wheel, it's really just slapping on. You know a label on a bottle and branding does pay a big. You know it's a big part of it in how you can differentiate yourself. But one thing that we did even now because we're still in the supplement space, so even though we sold that company moved into a little bit more of a niche supplement space. So now we sell gummies in particular and I also sit on the board for another company, which is like pharmaceutical crafted supplements. So a little bit more niche where it's like multi-ingredient formulations, so you can no longer just launch single ingredient products anymore and think you're going to rank for those super high volume keywords now we're relying- Bradley Sutton: Let me launch a vitamin c or some vitamin d and crush it. Melisa: Yeah, no, like you always use the example of collagen right there you no one should ever go into the collagen market these days. Even you know, five years ago it was very, very hard to break into collagen. So rather than focusing on collagen, we focus on solutions. So things for hair growth, things for, you know, hair, skin nails is also another big keyword, things like that. You want to go after more of those long tail keywords, but ones that target specific problems that people are having. So that's kind of what we've kind of shifted into, and then also doing things that you know are kind of following a trend as well. Melisa: So, for example, you know, there was that whole big craze it still is a craze where people are taking semi-glutides which are like Ozempic, you know, Manjarono, things like that for weight loss, and obviously with that comes a lot of side effects. So we were able to create a custom formulation that targets and helps with a lot of those side effects. So that really helped us gain a lot of traction because no one else was doing it. So we're creating different solutions for these problems. That kind of became more popular and more in, you know, more searched. So if you pay attention to different trends, keywords, things like that, sometimes you can get ahead of the trends. So, rather than trying to arrive a wave that's already dying, you're almost positioning yourself for the wave before it happens, and that's what any good surfer knows. Bradley Sutton: Something crazy. I don't remember if it was your beauty brand or your supplement brand, but you were talking about. At one point you were doing like 400 K of sales a month and you were not using PPC. Now, was that for the beauty brand or also for the supplements? You weren't doing PPC. Melisa: For both. Yeah, we never really focused too much on PPC. We did have a little bit for the beauty brand, but for supplements in particular, we focused on velocity, because if you can sell at a slightly you know lower price point and remain competitive, still making a profit. Our goal was not you know the amount of profit we're making per product, it was how much we could actually sell, how many units could we actually get out the door. Because not only that, we get more exposure to the customers if someone buys a product once, it's easier to sell to someone again rather than trying to sell to a new person. So we make it very easy for people to purchase our products because they're affordable, right. So not only that, it's negotiating with your suppliers. Melisa: We now have brought on our supplier as a partner in one of our brands, so we have the best terms. We have net 90. We don't have to pay them and it's basically until most of our stock is already sold, which is it puts us at a huge advantage compared to some of our other competitors, right, where you have to pay for it upfront, before it even gets sent into Amazon. You know, Amazon takes like four weeks sometimes to check in your inventory, depending on the season. So things like that definitely make a difference in helping us remain competitive. But the reason why we weren't needing to spend on PPC was because we were riding the wave of other people spending big marketing dollars to educate our customers for us and we just had to make sure we were positioned next to them. Bradley Sutton: Like direct influencers, or just riding the wave of just like search terms that were generic and those people weren't even necessarily pushing you? Or is it a mixture of both? Melisa: Right. The search terms and then also the branded search terms as well. But you know the whole craze with apple cider vinegar gummies, right? So there was that big company that they launched apple cider vinegar gummies. They were the first to do it. They were spending so much money trying to get Ellen, you know, on the Ellen Degeneres show, all these different outlets like paying out the Kardashians to promote this product and they were educating people for us on, okay, this is what this product does. Melisa: We just had to make sure we were showing up for the right keywords and showing up for their brand keywords as a cheaper alternative. So even if we could just get like a small percentage of their market share, people are going to try us. Just because we were undercutting them a little bit. They were charging, you know, a pretty high price point at the time and now there's so many different players in the space, so obviously it's kind of like a price race to the bottom now. So we don't currently sell it because that was in our previous brand that we sold. Melisa: But that was one of the things where, like, we saw the trend, we're like, okay, they're already spending so much money on marketing, we don't have to spend it ourselves. We just have to make sure that we show up in the right places at the right time because that's what marketing is. It's all about. You know, being there when someone needs something and the more times you can be in front of someone when you know, the time kind of persists because not everyone's going to need to buy certain things at that exact moment, so the more times that you can actually position yourself so that when they are ready to buy and you're there, you're more likely to be able to convert. Melisa: Like the cool thing about marketing is not just about how you say something but like there's so many different ways that you can say something. So like if you walk down the street and you see two different coffee shops, for example, right, and both of them have a sign out, one maybe says, like you know, we sell hot liquid from brown beans, and then the other is like hey, our coffee is stronger than your Wi-Fi. By the way, we have free Wi-Fi, you know? Like which one are you going to go to? There's so many ways to say we sell coffee. So it's really cool, because it's such a fun game of finding the most creative ways to say something. 0:11:04 - Bradley Sutton: I like it. Now we're going to get back to your e-commerce strategies, but one thing, as I was mentioning, I live my life vicariously, sometimes through Instagram, and so I've noticed you know, you've done some side hustles and some other endeavors and investments, which I think is important that e-commerce sellers think about the next step too. It could be, for some, a hobby, like, hey, I've always wanted to do this, but now I have the means to do it because of my Amazon business, or they've exited and now they want to. You know, hey, what else can I get into? So I think it's something that a lot of Amazon sellers aren't thinking about. But maybe, talking about your experiences, you might stir some creative juices. Bradley Sutton: But one of the things that you decided to do and I'd like to just get into, like how you came to that was doing an escape room. So was like escape room something that you always like doing yourself, and you're like, oh, this is a passion project. Or were you like, oh man, there's in this area, there's a need for this. I think I can make some money off of it. How did you come? You know, land on that as your side hustle, kind of thing. Melisa: Yeah, I love escape rooms. I think, as entrepreneurs as well, we naturally are good problem solvers, so these are kind of like fun problems to solve, right. They put you in a situation where you need to complete all the puzzles and then you have to escape. But it's usually immersed in some sort of storyline, which makes it interesting. So essentially you become like the main character in a little video game and it's a lot of fun. So it's good for team building. We like doing it with family. Melisa: You know friends, other entrepreneurs I've met on my travels. I'll be like, hey, like I know we just met, but like, call me crazy, let's do an escape room together. I know it's crazy walking you know strangers in a room for an hour. Anything could go wrong. But some of like the strongest partnerships and I guess relationships I've had are, you know people I've done escape rooms with because you kind of see this different side of them and you work together. You're almost like you know how trauma bonds people. Well, this is like you're in a high stress environment where, like, you need to escape by a certain time and you know, naturally we're all competitive people, we're entrepreneurs, business owners, so it was like really cool seeing people work really well together to get towards a common goal. And then you know some of those people I still talk to today and it's really, really cool. Bradley Sutton: Now is this something that, like you, 100% did from scratch, or you bought into a franchise or something, or you just started your own brand and built it all yourself. Melisa: Yeah. So I am a franchisee, which is, I thought it was the best way to, you know, get into this space, because for me to learn everything from scratch, you know, like, how to program controllers, the logic flow, writing all the storylines. You know the prop building all that stuff. You know CNC, build it like printing 3D printing, all that stuff you know CNC building like printing 3D printing, all that stuff like that would be way too much for me to do as a single person. Sure, I could hire out teams, but it just made more sense to partner with an existing company. So I ended up doing some of their games. I was like you know what? These are really great. There's obviously some room for improvement, as well, which I would be able to take care of on my side for my specific location. Melisa: And then, you know, fast forward, they love what I did so much with my location that they actually offered me a job, which is crazy. Now I haven't accepted it yet, so it was like we're still kind of talking back and forth, but it would, you know, consist of some equity in the overall franchise, as well as, you know, a cushy paycheck. So it's it might be a cool thing for me to do or even as a consultant for them but they want to bring me on as part of the head office teams. I think that would be kind of cool and I really thought I'd, you know, have another job again after having a job for what? Eight years, eight-nine years now being self-employed. So yeah, it'd be definitely interesting, for sure. Bradley Sutton: Now, for this kind of thing. You know what kind of investment. Obviously there's a franchise, you know fee, and then there's, you know, construction and you know training new employees and getting everything together. So, like how much would I need? I mean, obviously you know I'm in California, it might be different than wherever you did yours, but you know we talking a hundred thousand, 200,000, $300,000 that somebody would need to be able to start an endeavor like this. Melisa: Right, so I mean out of pocket, you'd probably need at least $150,000, but it could be upwards of 500,000. Most of it would be covered by like SBA financing in your case in the States because it's an existing franchise. It's a lot easier to get you know that friend or that funding for a brick and mortar business, so that's also the appeal of it as well. So to be able to have you know outside sources or using other people's money we all know how great that is. Melisa: But in terms of like construction, that depends on the size of the space. So if you want to do you know, the bare minimum is you need at least 2,500 square feet of space. That's going to provide you with four different games. But if you want more space, obviously you can have a lot more space to work with, but it's going to cost you more in construction. So, depending on the space that you find, if there's already existing infrastructure like it has drywall, it has drop ceilings, the HVAC is already installed, it has bathrooms and you have very minimal to work with your costs are going to be much lower than if you were to work with an empty shell building. So for me, I literally moved into a building that was like completely empty. It was gutted they call it vanilla shell so I had freedom to do whatever I wanted with that space. Melisa: And it is very, very, very tall. It has like super tall ceilings. It's like 17 and a half feet tall. So obviously that's a lot more paint that I have to pay for, so it does get more costly, but it could run you, like I said, anywhere from 150 to 500,000. But in terms of like ROI, it just made so much sense because I went to a franchise show, checked out so many different business models the food space. You have all this overhead cost in terms of inventory. You have food costs. You have spoilage right. Food that doesn't get bought, or, like you mess up, you cook it improperly, so there's a lot that could go wrong, whereas this, you build it at once and then that's your main cost. The only thing you have is your rent and then the employees to run it, which really doesn't take that many people to run an escape room. Bradley Sutton: Yeah, that's something I noticed when I did my escape room with my family. It was like two people or one, you know, just the front desk person. There might have been somebody cleaning or something like that. Just thinking from an e-commerce seller's viewpoint, at what stage or what level of person should you say, hey, you know, I mean not necessarily escape room, but just anything you know like this, like what you know. Like hey, if you're making less than a million dollars a year and you're doing everything on your own a hundred percent, don't be trying to think about you know doing this. Or hey, once you get to the level where you've got two-three employees in your business on autopilot, or hey, you should not even think about this unless you hit this kind of you know revenue or profit, or like. What kind of guidelines would you suggest to people out there who might be like, hey, I've always wanted to do something on the side for some more steady income perhaps. How would you advise them? Melisa: The thing is there's so many ways to make money these days that don't require a lot of, I guess, startup capital. Especially when it comes to affiliate marketing or high ticket sales things like that. I always recommend, if you need to make some extra cash, get really, really good at sales. That's going to be, you know, the biggest skill build and investment that you can make into yourself. But also, if you just need to make cash, like sell for someone who has something really awesome to offer and you can make a big commission from that, right. But if you want to start like an actual, I guess for me this is very much like a passion project because I love escape rooms and it's kind of like I wouldn't say a side hustle at this point because it does require a lot of time and effort, just in the beginning at least. But once you have it up and running for about six months and your staff is trained, you have a manager, you know you could step away. That's why I was able to go to Hawaii. I was able to, you know, be in Hawaii with you for BDSS and take time off and not have to worry and like I'm not there right now, but I have staff there right now who are running it while I'm gone. I'll probably stop in later because we're doing a really cool collaboration with this local influencer. He has like 14 million subscribers on YouTube but we're getting him to do one of our escape rooms so I'm really excited for that but there's like so much opportunity for collaboration. Melisa: Anyways, in terms of how much you need comfortably to start something like an escape room or franchise, I guess in general it really depends on the franchise. You know McDonald's, it's going to require you at least a minimum one million dollars, right. Subway's a minimum 500, 000. This escape room very low entry compared to some of these bigger franchises. So, like I mentioned, 150 to 500, 000. But a lot of that is covered by the bank loan. So, as long as you have in excess capital, be able to float. Melisa: You know the time during construction. But there's ways to negotiate free rent during the construction period, which is pretty. It's often offered depending on you know the space that you're looking pretty. It's often offered depending on you know the space that you're looking at. If it's been empty for like a year and they want to put someone in it. They don't mind giving you four or five, six months free rent while you do construction, until you're up and running. So I'd say you know you would want probably half a million in assets before thinking about doing something like that, just because, in case something happens, it's always good to have a rainy day fund. Bradley Sutton: You know, I think it's funny because a lot of people obviously complain about Amazon and the problems that sometimes it has and new fees and this, you know, screw up by Amazon, or they lost my inventory, but they don't realize. Hey, businesses have trouble, too. So, like you just mentioned your fire thing, but then also, when you got started, did you like even get robbed, like right away, or something like that? Melisa: Yeah, we had a break in and, funny enough, a month ago we had another break in, but twice in one night. So it's just a different set of problems, right. Every business is going to have its own unique problems itself. Sometimes I joke, I'm like, oh, maybe I should just do an e-commerce. But I love what I do with the escape room. Obviously, it's very fulfilling. Melisa: I get to hire students. I have this amazing work culture. You know some of my employees they'll come to work even on their day off. Like it's so cool seeing that and to be able to provide that kind of and give back to my local community, providing a place of work where people can grow as individuals who can build these different skills. Just from customer service standpoint and, you know, learning the ins and outs of the business and being a key holder, things like that and being in proximity to me, because I have one girl that works for me and she's also kind of in the e-commerce world as well, so she's almost like my little pupil, little protege. So it's kind of cool just having that know mentor-mentee relationship as well. Bradley Sutton: Nice, nice, all right. Now, coming back to e-commerce, you know you won best speaker at Billion Dollar Seller Summit. You did some cool magic tricks. I remember too. But you know, obviously we're not going to rehash the whole entire Billion Dollar Seller Summit. You got to go to Billion Dollar Seller Summit, guys, if you want to get that good data. But I wanted know, like, maybe you can bring out one of the topics you did, maybe either the site map one or the Reddit one, your choice. But what do you think is relevant here in middle of 2024, that on one of those topics that you think that can help our sellers out there? Melisa: Yeah, I think that Reddit would be a cool topic of discussion just because it's such an underrated social media platform. Like cool topic of discussion just because it's such an underrated social media platform. Like when you think social media, you don't really Reddit is not at the top of your mind, but it's a really great place for people to do research. So most of your customers are still in their research phase, so you want to show up when they are doing their research. Right, and that's where, if you have all these different threads that you are consistently mentioned in, it's going to be so much easier when it comes time to them actually pulling the trigger to actually want to buy from you. Melisa: So there's this really cool tool called Advite that we use. That helps us A-D-V-I-T-E dot AI, I believe, and they use AI to basically scrape Reddit and all the different threads and it will actually ping you whenever there's a relevant thread that you should maybe comment on. It's almost like help a reporter out, but like, for you know people, just random people that need answers for questions, and it's usually very unique questions too, like whenever I have a specific problem unique to myself, I always like type in, like, okay, this is the problem I'm having and I put Reddit at the end because I know someone in the world has had this problem before. Maybe someone has a solution. So it's really cool because these threads they obviously live there as like a forever forum and once you've recommended your own product or whatever it is, or your own solution on it, it stays there. Melisa: So other people who might have that problem will end up coming back to that thread and you can hit people and it's very evergreen. It's like it's there. It's almost like you posted it once and it's going to be there forever for people to come back to. So that's definitely something you should keep in mind when trying to warm up your potential customers. And if you use Advite, it's going to ping you all of those different threads. Just be on top of posting, contributing, getting that good karma, those upvotes, things like that, and you can even get other people or higher VAs to comment on your behalf on different ghost accounts. And as long as you can show up multiple times, people are going to be like oh yeah, I remember that brand. I've seen it pop up a couple of times. That's the brand I'm probably going to choose because you know so many people have recommended it. Bradley Sutton: So now I see you active sometimes in the Helium 10 Elite Facebook group, you know. So obviously you're doing something on Amazon now, but you exited the other brand. Are you still working with that brand you exited, or you went and started another one? Or what exactly are you doing in the Amazon world these days? Melisa: No. So we've exited that brand and then started shortly after another supplement brand. Thankfully, we didn't have like a very strict non-compete, so we were able to get into that space and then also dabbling in pet supplements as well. So another cool thing is that we're kind of looking into is customization of packaging, because nowadays, like you, really do have to do things different. Amazon just announced that they're making it so much easier for Chinese sellers to be able to ship their products straight from China. So that's going to change the game a lot. And if you don't have a solid brand or you're not connecting personally with your customers, then you are going to have a very rough time once that starts kicking in and all of your the Chinese competitors are undercutting you. So things like the kitchen industry are going to get really disrupted, like things that don't really have a lot of branding. You know, like most people can't really brand a garlic press. People are just going to buy the cheapest one that they think is going to for them. Melisa: But in terms of like supplements, especially things for pets, like it's such a personal thing, like people will spend as much money as they can for their pet. They have the budget spread because it's like their second children really, especially for millennials, right, who can't afford children. Like pets are our new children. But yeah, in Hawaii, actually, Janelle page, she mentioned something in her presentation about Jones Soda Company, how they would let people vote on different photos to put on the bottles. So we kind of want to implement something similar where we actually have our customers, dogs, photos on the bottles of our products. So that's something that we're kind of logistically exploring right now and I think that everyone should be kind of forward thinking like that, if you can to personalize it, or even if you can't, you can, you know, do a lot more blanket. Like for this print run, we're going to feature one of your dogs, so get everyone to post selfies with their dogs, with your product, and that's a good way to generate more content for your company. So doing things like that aren't as difficult to implement, especially if you don't do the manufacturing yourself. Melisa: Difficult to implement, especially if you don't do the manufacturing yourself, but with labels nowadays, like it becomes a lot easier, as long as you can get them all printed on the same roll. We do have, I think, our manufacturer for labels. They allow you to have as many different variations of label as you want. Which I think is cool. So if we had even like a hundred different dogs that we like have on this bottle, so we had even like a hundred different dogs that we like have on this bottle, so it's not like a consistent one, but then at least when we do go to retail people are going to see oh, this is the same dog as my dog. Like I'm going to buy that just because my dog is on the product. Bradley Sutton: All right, yeah, I like that. I think I always wonder about you know how, when your listing goes down on Amazon, that there's a dog page, that, like I always wondered. It was like are those Amazon employees dogs? Or something like that. It was a similar vibe, I guess. Bradley Sutton: Okay. That's pretty cool. Now what? What's one thing new you're doing with this supplement brand that's working, and what's one thing that you're not doing? That you did with the other ones because, like you know, the Amazon world has changed off of. Melisa: So I guess something new that we've done is, I mean, it has been pretty consistent across all of our brands is just doing like variations of Supreme URLs I know Super URLs and that kind of graduated but we've been doing a lot of Google redirects, so making sure that we have a lot of external traffic coming into our pages because before we weren't doing any of that, it was just strictly. We were so Amazon focused. We were just like let's rank for keywords on Amazon, like let's just make sure that we're good here. But now you can't just rely on Amazon anymore. You have to be well-rounded in on different platforms. And we've been doing a lot more social media. It's obviously a lot more work but once you have the systems in play, it kind of makes it easier when you have VAS pumping out that content for you. But yeah, we've been doing a lot more content. Like content is king. You know how they say attention is the new currency, like that rings true and truer than ever. So one thing I am trying to do is become more comfortable in front of the camera and almost like pull things that I'm doing from the retail side of things, like from the, from brick and mortar into our e-commerce. Melisa: So like, for example, knowing the life cycle of your product is so important because then you know, okay, especially because we're in consumables we know when someone's going to run out of their product. Usually, it's either like a 30-day or a 60-day supply. So if you can, you know, send out an email to your customer a couple of days, or, if not, like a week, before they're about to run out, or even just like as they're about to run out. You're going to raise, you're going to have that top of mind awareness and you're going to be there at the right time. You're going to be there when you know your customer is going to need you and then it's going to, you know, trigger something in their brain. It's like oh yeah, I'm about to run out, I should probably order more. Melisa: So we've been sending out like emails or follow-ups for our customers, even with like review generation. What we do at like the escape room, for example, is we do have like a funnel, almost, where people would like leave us almost like feedback and then we convert it into a review but now we've been doing it as like more personal. I'm trying to find AI tools to help us automate it a little bit more. But basically we have like a selfie of us holding like a whiteboard and then we would just put like the person's name on it and be like thank you so much, like so and so, or whatever, and just thank them for their feedback. And then they're like, oh my God, like this is so personal, like of course, I'll leave you a review, you know. So, trying to do like more personalized things like that, and I think AI is going to make it so much easier. And yeah, that's the other thing, right, AI, implementing so much AI and everything in all aspects of our business has been so different because, like a couple of years ago. Bradley Sutton: Obviously you're probably doing 10 different things, but if you were to say the most impactful, what is the most impactful AI thing that you've implemented? Melisa: Using Midjourney has been a huge game changer for us as well, because now content creation for us is so much easier and so much cheaper, even product images. So before, if you wanted to get a really high quality product render with crazy you know, like crazy fruit in the background, things like that you'd have to pay someone a lot of money to just get one photo, like from a photographer. But now AI can literally generate it and it costs you pennies on the dollar. And then copywriting oh my gosh, copywriting is so much easier now. So that's why we're doing a lot more email marketing too. Bradley Sutton: Last couple of questions here. Favorite Helium 10 tool. Melisa: Favorite Helium 10 tool. Well, the one that I use on a daily basis is obviously the Keyword Tracker that helps me keep on top of everything, but also the map that shows you, you know- Bradley Sutton: Inventory heat map and sales heat map. Melisa: And seeing like the clusters of customers and where most of your inventory is and kind of tailoring to that, because we've been doing a lot more location targeting as well. So kind of what I mentioned earlier was knowing what to show someone at the right time. So taking a page out of like Tim Hortons book, for example, I don't know if you know Tim Hortons, but that's like a coffee company in Canada, Bradley Sutton: That's like Canada. Yeah, I know, I know about it, yep. Melisa: Yeah. So they have an app where they'll show you different deals based on your location, but also who you are as a person or as an individual shoppers like personalized coupons, things like that. So there's this one platform we were using, called Aviva, for the longest time, where we can on our website. If someone visits our website, we can show them different popups based on their location. Melisa: So we can show them like a very personalized experience when they arrive to the website. So knowing where our customers are super helpful, and I think the Helium Heat Map tool is cool for that just seeing where our inventory is as well, because then you're going to have, like that, faster shipping. So you know that. You know it's going to show up as prime or even same day shipping sometimes, so being able to focus on a specific area is also super cool. Bradley Sutton: When you look at the sales heat map and see, like, where your sales are concentrated, do you do anything based on that, like, do you actually run Google Ads or something that geolocated you know, to areas that you're not doing well, or you double down on the areas you are selling? What's the action that you take after looking at that? Melisa: Yeah, we usually double down on the areas that have high concentration of our customers because that's where they typically are and sometimes it surprises you where some of your customers are. Like, we do get a lot of customers in New York. Obviously, it's a big city, but I think a lot of people during COVID they were lonely in their condos but because it's very constricted you get a lot of small dogs. So we'll start like doing like when we do our targeting for Facebook ads and things like that, we'll actually show a lot more smaller dogs in New York versus, like you know, in Texas maybe they have bigger yards, things like that. We're going to show the bigger breeds so that way we can hit more of our demographic. Bradley Sutton: I used to have a great Pyrenees, because I have a big lot here and I would actually have. I had goats and pigs and stuff and that's like a livestock guardian. But yeah, somebody in New York City would not have a great Pyrenees, which is the gigantic dog. Okay, cool If I were to give you the keys to the Helium 10 product team, like, hey, you're our CTO for the day and you're like Helium 10 needs to have this feature in an existing tool or it needs to make this new tool that we don't have now. What would it be? Melisa: Yeah, you guys don't do that anymore, but if you can create your own Google redirect URL targeting keywords, that would be cool. Okay, because I use that regularly, especially for launches especially for launches. Bradley Sutton: All right, how can people find you on the interwebs out there if they want to follow you or maybe connect? 0:33:34 - Melisa: You can follow me on Instagram @melisa with one S, my mom's felt my name on a member certificate, so it's very fab of her. Or you can email me. Linkedin is also a good one. I'm starting to be a little bit more active on LinkedIn, but yeah. Bradley Sutton: Awesome, Melisa. Thank you so much for joining us and I'm going to have to go to your escape room. But don't judge me on how slow I am. Sometimes it takes me up until the very last deadline to try and get out and I sometimes have to have help from the guide in those things because I don't think well in those kind of high pressure situations. But I'm going to give it a try. Hope to hang out with you at an upcoming conference soon. Melisa: Yeah, absolutely. I can't wait to catch up with you somewhere in the world. We always see each other, you know, in our travels.
7/20/202434 minutes, 5 seconds
Episode Artwork

#579 - How to Source Amazon Products in India, Turkey, and Vietnam

Meghla Bhardwaj, the globe's leading expert on sourcing from India, joins us for an illuminating discussion on the current and emerging trends in India's e-commerce landscape. Discover how giants like Amazon and Flipkart are transforming the market and how tier-two cities are becoming key players. Meghla also gives a heartfelt account of her personal journey of moving back to India from Singapore, shedding light on the adjustments and opportunities she encountered along the way. We take a deep dive into the quick commerce revolution in India, where mobile apps deliver groceries to your door in mere minutes. From specialty e-commerce websites focused on categories like apparel and electronics to the impressive success stories of Indian sellers on Amazon.com, this episode covers it all. Learn how individual entrepreneurs and niche manufacturers in sectors like bedsheets and jewelry are thriving, and how Indian factories are evolving to meet the needs of Amazon sellers with improved packaging and labeling capabilities. Beyond India, Meghla shares insights on sourcing opportunities in Turkey, emphasizing the high-quality textiles and unique designs that set Turkish products apart. She also discusses the growing electronics manufacturing industry in India and the increasing competitiveness of Indian sectors like organic cotton babywear and wooden toys. With a focus on the booming handmade sector and the importance of India sourcing trips, this episode is packed with valuable tips and personal stories for anyone interested in the dynamic world of e-commerce and global sourcing. In episode 579 of the Serious Sellers Podcast, Bradley and Meghla discuss: 00:00 - State Of E-Commerce in India 03:34 - Rising Trends in Indian E-Commerce 06:14 - Success in Cross-Border E-Commerce 11:51 - Finding Suppliers in India - Tips 14:32 - Sourcing and Differentiation in E-Commerce 20:38 - Changing Sourcing Trends in India 20:48 - Growth of Electronics Manufacturing in China 25:04 - Utilizing Meghla's India Sourcing Services 31:58 - Exploring Turkey's Unique Products and Opportunities ► Instagram: instagram.com/serioussellerspodcast ► Free Amazon Seller Chrome Extension: https://h10.me/extension ► Sign Up For Helium 10: https://h10.me/signup  (Use SSP10 To Save 10% For Life) ► Learn How To Sell on Amazon: https://h10.me/ft ► Watch The Podcasts On YouTube: youtube.com/@Helium10/videos Transcript   Bradley Sutton: Today we've got the world's foremost expert on sourcing products from India, Meghla, back on the show and she's going to talk about a variety of topics, not just sourcing in India, but also e-commerce in India and even sourcing in other countries like Turkey. How cool is that? Pretty cool, I think. Helium 10's got over 40 tools for e-commerce entrepreneurs. I know how overwhelming it might seem to try and figure out how you're going to learn how to use everything, or maybe even to know which ones you want to get started with, so for a completely free course that's going to guide you through learning everything you need in order to become a Helium 10 expert, visit the Helium 10 Academy that is h10.me forward slash academy. Hello everybody and welcome to another episode of the Serious Sellers Podcast by Helium 10. I'm your host, Bradley Sutton, and this is the show that's completely BS-free, unscripted and unrehearsed organic conversation about serious strategies for serious sellers of any level in the e-commerce world, and we're going back on the opposite side of the world again. For the fourth time, Meghla 's here on the show. Meghla, welcome, welcome.   Meghla: Thank you so much, Bradley. So excited to be here for the first time, yeah, but it's been quite a while. I think the last time I was on was a couple of years ago, wasn't it?   Bradley Sutton: Yes, yeah, so just you know, if anybody wants to get Meghla’s full backstory, I got a list here of all the episodes she's been on, so you guys can, you know, pause this one and go back if you guys want to, but she's been on the show since 2019. All right, that was her first time on the show, was episode all the way back in episode 84, then two, 10, then three, 31. And now we're in the 500. So, every couple hundred episodes she joins us here like clockwork, and so it's been a couple of years. I guess the last time was right towards the end of COVID there early 2022. First of all, what are you up to these days? Where do you live? Where are you calling in from today?   Meghla: Well, I'm calling in from India. So, as you know, I was previously based in Singapore and two years ago I moved back to India. To, you know, focus a lot more on the India sourcing business, India sourcing trip. So now I'm permanently based in India and it's been   Bradley Sutton: Whereabouts?   Meghla: in Delhi.   Bradley Sutton: How is it being back home?   Meghla: well, it's amazing, I mean, I really like it. My son had a bit of a problem adjusting.   Bradley Sutton: I was about to say like your son, never lived in India before or when he was little. Maybe or no, his whole life was in other countries.   Meghla: Yeah, his whole life was in other countries China and Singapore and so it was a bit of an adjustment for him as well. He couldn't even speak the language very fluently, but now he's like totally Desi. Desi is like a local person, that's the word that we use. So, yeah, he's, he's adjusted. I'm really glad I moved back because there's so much opportunity, you know, so much happening in terms of the economy, manufacturing, exports, so I think I made the right decision to move back.   Bradley Sutton: Okay, nice, nice. Now let's talk a little bit about, you know, the economy over there and I know, like you know, social commerce is big, and but what about just the traditional? You know that's been one of the larger Amazon marketplaces. How is Amazon doing, you know, versus Flipkart, etc. What's the e-commerce situation in a nutshell that's going on in India the last couple of years?   Meghla: Yeah, the e-commerce situation is very rosy. I mean, e-commerce is booming. There's, you know, increasingly the tier two cities are also getting on the e-commerce bandwagon and there are more sales from, you know, the smaller cities as well. It started with mostly the Metropolitans but now it's sort of you know, the tier two cities are also. A lot of people are shopping online over there.   What's really moving very fast is quick commerce. So that's something that is, you know, like for your groceries, for example, or daily use products. There are these apps and they're totally mobile based, right, there's no website that they have no browsers are only apps and you can basically order your groceries and they're delivered in minutes, like 10 minutes, 15 minutes, seven minutes. You know there's a race to like how fast the groceries can be delivered, so it's very convenient. Like since the time I've moved here, I've probably gone to the grocery store, maybe like twice or so. So, everything is ordered online by these websites or these apps basically.   Meghla: So, I think that's really booming, that whole quick commerce sector. Apart from that, there are a lot of these specialty e commerce websites that are coming up that. So, for example, you know, for apparel, there are specific websites only for women's apparel, for electronics, for toys, for all of these kinds of things. So that's another trend that's happening. But Amazon is still sort of the everything store, so if you can't find anything anywhere else, you'll definitely find it on Amazon. And then Flipkart as well is sort of number two, you know, to Amazon, but it is. I mean, both Amazon and Flipkart are sort of neck to neck and they're still dominating the domestic e-commerce sector over here.   Bradley Sutton: Are there more successful Amazon India sellers? You know, I remember when we first started like or around then, like in 2019, you know I was like, hey, I need some help with finding some, like, really successful sellers. And then you did come up with one, but that was about it. In those days there was, like you know, one main guy who was doing really well but uh, are you seeing more people have a lot of success over there, or is it still pretty kind of like just even like everybody's just doing okay and not many people have really made it big?   Meghla: No, so there are some people that have made it really big and you know, they're doing like seven figures, eight figures in terms of cross border e-commerce, in terms of, you know, like selling on amazon.com mostly amazon.com at Amazon Europe as well. So that is definitely happening. A lot of the larger manufacturers, you know, they have established their own brands and they have, you know, started selling on e-commerce directly. So that's a trend that's happening. But, by and large, most manufacturers prefer not to sell directly on e-commerce platforms, even though Amazon themselves have been encouraging manufacturers to sell directly. But typically, the small, mid-sized manufacturers they want to focus on their core strength, which is manufacturing. They want to do large orders. That's where they really make their money and a lot of manufacturers have tried selling cross water but they have not been successful because, you know, of course shipping rates are high and there are a lot of returns and things like that. So not able to manage it.   Meghla: But the people that are being really successful are entrepreneurs and individual sellers, you know, because they are good at marketing. So, they source products from different manufacturers and they sell those products cross-border. So, there are quite a few niches that are seeing a lot of successful sellers. So, for example, bedsheets. I know one manufacturer that's doing really well in terms of bedsheets being exported. They have their own factory and they're doing that. Then there's also things like marble products and jewelry. So, a lot of sellers, resellers and manufacturers doing jewelry from the city of Jaipur. So, there are niches where people have been successful.   Bradley Sutton: Now, you know, speaking of sourcing in India, you know that was something we've been talking about every time you've been on the show. Now, in the early days, you know, like before 2020, it could have been said that, hey, a lot of the manufacturers I believe we even talked about this a lot of the manufacturers, you know some of them didn't have that much experience, as far as sourcing or supplying. I should say Amazon sellers you know the new ones is that go on with that, like the manufacturing time and the quantities, and interfacing sending stuff directly to Amazon. Like you know, a lot of the Chinese factories are ones who have been doing this for 10, 15 years and they know all the ins and outs and the requirements of Amazon and it's like clockwork. But, you know, in the early days, you know, I remember you had said that, hey, you know, some of the factories might be a little bit green when it comes to that, but now I think you know I hear more and more sellers manufacturing, or even ones who were manufacturing in China, you know, moving their manufacturing to India. You know, due to tariffs or whatever the case is. What's the situation now? Do you find more and more factories are almost like on par with the Chinese ones as far as experience now with dealing directly with Amazon sellers?   Meghla: Yes, definitely. There are increasingly more factories that are familiar with the packaging requirements, the labeling and all of those things. In fact, I was visiting a couple of factories just last week in the city of Moradabad, where there's a lot of metal production that happens there metal and wooden production. So, I was visiting this factory that makes urns and they have a ton of Amazon sellers as their clients, and what they have started doing now like they're adapting to Amazon sellers’ requirements. So, for example   Bradley Sutton: urns would be something good for my spooky coffin shelf friend, perhaps. Maybe you should think about adding that.   Meghla: Absolutely yeah, and they're beautiful, gorgeous urns, right. And so, they cater to Amazon sellers. And what they have started doing is because Amazon sellers require inventory very fast, very quickly. So, they have started keeping stock of just blanks, you know, because the basic shape of the urn is the same, it's just it comes in different sizes and it's basically the patterns, the designs and the finish that differentiates one earn from the other. So, they just keep blanks ready in stock and so whenever you know Amazon sellers have sort of an order, they're like okay, quickly send it into production. So, they save a lot of time. And they specifically told me this is for our Amazon sellers because they require, you know, products to be shipped really fast. So that's happening. A lot of small midsize companies, because more Amazon sellers are sourcing from India now, they are definitely getting more familiar. The one thing that I'm seeing is that there aren't too many still like freight forwarders that are familiar. Not everybody is familiar with how to ship to Amazon. So just a couple of days ago I was talking to a freight forwarder and they were like we have no idea how to ship to FBA, but the one that we work with, for example, they understand how to do it very, very well. So, I think for shipping you just have to be a little careful. But increasingly suppliers sort of understand Amazon.   Bradley Sutton: When sellers who are sourcing from China experience increases in shipping costs, kind of like. Now what's going on? Is it pretty much the same across the board for India, or sometimes they're kind of immune to those, or pretty much just hey, anybody who's going that direction over the Pacific Ocean is going to have the same changes.   Meghla: So, it depends. In some situations, India does face increases, just like China. So, for example, during COVID, both India and China, that was sort of a global phenomenon overall. So, even though, I mean, China’s cost increased significantly they were up to, I think, like $25,000 per container at one point, but India's cost did not increase that much. I think they were maximum $12,000 or so. So currently India's costs are increasing, but for different reasons, because it's mostly because of the whole situation in the Suez Canal and you know, because of which the ships have to sort of take a longer route to the US. So that's what's mostly affecting, you know, the shipping costs from India currently, whereas in China, I think it's a different situation, where, you know, there is sort of increased demand for certain products as such. So, yeah, it's not always the same trend, but it can be.   Bradley Sutton: Obviously, you know, we'll talk a little bit about it later. You know, I think you know, one of the best ways to find factories is getting help from you and also, you know, maybe even visiting the factories on one of your sourcing trips or taking, you know, source. You know, maybe somebody can go on their own to visit certain factories. But what are you know, outside of that, what are some other ways that people can find the factories? Like, obviously, Indian factories have always been on Alibaba. Is that still a good way also, at least just to see what's out there? Or are there other websites that have emerged, maybe I don't know about, in the last few years?   Meghla: yeah, so Alibaba and global sources, those are the two key global marketplaces. There are some suppliers from India and other countries, so you've got to use the supplier location filter to find factories from India. Plus, you can also just do a google search. A lot of the websites are now ranked on Google because Google is not blocked in India as it is in China. So, you'll find, you know, suppliers have websites, but of course, they don't keep their websites up to date. Sometimes they don't reply to emails that are sent to. You know email addresses on the website. So, you know, that's something you just have to keep in mind. Avoid the website India Mart, because that's going to come up very often, but that website is very domestic focused, and so there are a lot of companies that you know might not have export licenses, for example. So, yeah, I mean, there's also export promotion councils that you can go to, so visit their websites. You can download the list of their members, all of whom are exporters, but again, you have to like call them or email them to actually find out what their capabilities are.   Meghla: In terms of other websites, I mean, I don't think there are any other supplier directories that have come up recently. There are some websites that have started, you know, selling products from India. For example, there's this website called expobazaar.com, which is basically they have stock in the US, which is basically they have stock in the US and so if you want to drop ship, for example, or if you want to buy very small quantities, like five, 10, 15 pieces, you can buy it from that website and then they can ship it directly. So, they have a lot of stock in the US and what they don't have in the US they can ship from India. So that concept is sort of picking up. Drop shipping is picking up for certain categories as well. Yeah, concept is sort of picking up Drop shipping is picking up for certain categories as well, and we have started offering sourcing services now like a sourcing agency. Previously we were just sort of connecting suppliers and buyers, but now we are managing the entire process because we found that a lot of people just stumble a lot. India is not easy to navigate, suppliers are not easy to manage sometimes, so we've started offering sort of end-to-end sourcing solutions  as well.   Bradley Sutton: Okay, all right. Yeah, speaking of that, you know, like a couple of years ago we were working on what was going to be kind of like a version of Project X, and then most of it we kind of just postponed, like we filmed a whole bunch of stuff, but then, you know, with COVID and different things going on, like we kind of paused it. But the one thing that we actually, or the only thing in that project that we saw all the way to the end, was something that we sourced. I remember, you know, I I told you about it. I was like all right, you know, we obviously know in project X how to source products. Uh, you know, from China, let's try to do a product, that would be, that would be good for India, and then it was this macrame, product, and so, um, conversations and stuff. You know, I believe Shivali went directly to you but, walk us through, kind of like what happened? Like she, she maybe, contacted you and told you kind of like the, the, the kind of product it was, and then, first of all, you had to make the decision is this good to source in India or not? And we'll talk a little bit about that. You know what is good and maybe what isn't good to do in India. But then then, how did you go about finding and vetting factories, like, did you have one exactly that went to mind, or did you, maybe you know, shop around a little bit, get some samples? Walk us through the process a little bit.   Meghla: Yeah. So, Shivali basically sent us a link and, I think, a couple of photos, and she had specific requirements. So, then what we did was we looked through our database, because we have a database of vetted suppliers and we do have quite a few suppliers that do macrame, because macrame is one of India's strong points. Like anything that is handmade, handcrafted, you'll find it is you know better in India, because labor is, of course, cheaper over here. So, what we did was we spoke to I don't remember the exact number of suppliers, but maybe like four or five suppliers we sent out the product to, we got quotes from them and then we basically went with the supplier that had the most competitive quote and also that had a good experience in macrame products, because a lot of the macrame products actually are done in homes by women, they're not done in factories and they're outsourced. So, it's very important for the supplier to be able to manage quality for such kind of products.   Meghla: So, you want to make sure that the supplier has control. So, we spoke to quite a few suppliers and with this supplier we've done some other products in the past and we know that he's got good control over the quality of products and he has somebody to go around and check what's happening in each of the households or the communities wherever these products are being manufactured. And I personally have visited his facility over here in Delhi, so I know that he has the you know facilities to process and he has a process of you know like a checking and cleaning and packing and processing the entire product after it comes in as well. So, then we decided to go with this supplier and we got a coat and the coat was very competitive. So, you know, we negotiated a little bit with this supplier and we went to Shivali with the coat and she was pretty happy with it. So, we didn't have to negotiate that further and the only issue that we had was for the hook. So, Shivali, wanted a specific kind of hook,   Bradley Sutton: That was me. I was the one who told her about that.   Meghla: yeah, you're the one causing all the trouble.   Bradley Sutton: Yep, yep, I remember that part of it. Yeah, I'm always thinking about how to differentiate, and the reason why was, you know, like already. But you know, by the time we started working on this, it started getting saturated. I was like, well that's fine, I want to show what happens when you do launch in a saturated niche. But I'm always thinking about how to differentiate. And one thing I learned about, you know, from my experience with the coffin shelves and things and I do a lot of other home decor products and I do a lot of other home decor products was that something that differentiates is how much you know how heavy you can, you know put something that's hanging on a wall and there's two, two factors there it's  not just how heavy, but how easy it is to install.   Bradley Sutton: You know, like me personally, I hate something you know that requires like a drill to use or you have that plastic piece and you put a screw through and through and it leaves like a humungous hole you know, I might have to have a drill in my house, which I know a lot of people don't have. So, and then, plus those just screws that go straight in. You know, those always aren't the strongest, you know, unless you're going directly into a stud or something, and then I think they're called, like, monkey hooks, but that was what we started using a while back for coffin shelves, and it just like you can just put it in with your hand and then, because of gravity and physics and everything, the way it works is like the strongest, and so I was like, no, we have to have this special hook because we'd be the only, we'd be the only macrame holder that has that, and so I think, if I'm not mistaken, we ended up actually sending it from China to India right?   Meghla: Yes, exactly. So, we tried sourcing those over here, but we couldn't find them. We could find all of the other types of hooks, but you know there are certain products that are just not made over here. Oh, there we go, that hook right here, yeah.   Bradley Sutton: So, yeah, here's one of the listings. Like I'm using this, you know skipping to the end, you know to the end, you know we ended up getting this product from India and then I'm using it for a couple of my launching case studies, where I'm just analyzing the different effects and it'll be it'll be like a permanent product on Amazon too, but already we've been using this whole product, and then there's those, those hooks and nice little bag here that they came up with.   Meghla: so, yeah, this is a real product, guys, that we are talking about here yeah, so the hooks came from China and that was a smooth process as well. We didn't have any issues. I mean our supplier over here. It was sent directly to his factory, so he was the importer. There were no duties or anything. It was very smooth process. So, yeah, that worked really well, and then the bag as well. So, the bag was also sourced from the same supplier, because he also does, cotton bags and things like that. So that was also one reason why we chose him, because he could do the bags too.   Bradley Sutton: Now, did Shivali organize the shipping, or did, did? did you also find the shipper for it?   Meghla: yeah, so we organized the shipping too and, because we used our shipper that you know, we're we've been using for a long time and they, they know how to ship out of India and also we used our shipper. Yeah, there was no issues with the shipping as far as I.   Bradley Sutton: Now that product in particular, you know, like I just happen to know, probably from previous conversations we've had, and then sometimes I'll watch your live streams on LinkedIn and stuff so I knew that you know that was a good one to source in India. But what are some other do's and dont’s Like? In the past I believe you had said, hey, you know electronics, you know like consumer electronics maybe stick to China, you know they're very good at that, but you know textiles and things like that in India. What about nowadays? What would you say are the top three or top five to do in the top three or so that maybe another country is better?   Meghla: So, electronics, I would say, still China is better, especially if you want to do OEM of things like Bluetooth headsets and if you want small quantities. But that's changing. I think maybe when I'm on the podcast, like in episode nine or so, I'll probably have a different story in the next couple of years, but that's changing too. There are a lot of electronics manufacturers that are being set up over here and, in fact, a lot of the bigger brands like Apple, Xiaomi. They have set up their factories and the supply chain is growing. So, there are a lot of like Bluetooth headsets and those kinds of companies that are setting up that are supplying to the domestic market and gradually these companies are going to export as well. So, the situation is definitely changing very fast. For example, there's this brand called Boat. They make a lot of Bluetooth headsets and you know, headphones, a lot of the small accessories, and now they have started exporting under their own brand and, of course, they will start doing OEM as well and they have, like I don't know, like 10 000 or so employees and across you know, various factories. It's a really big setup that they have and the government has been promoting electronics, but anyway. So, unless you are a big large, many you know brand electronics is still in China.   Meghla: And then I would also say in terms of dont's, a lot of the very low value products. You know something like for example, recently somebody came to us with the you know these curtains, polyester curtains that are blackout curtains and they're selling for I don't know like ten dollars or something or $15 online and we were not getting them in India at a good price. So, something like that that is very mass produced and suppliers and manufacturers in China can sort of get you know scale by producing in high volumes. Those sorts of products are still better in China. A lot of the plastic type of products as well, I would say China is still better, although again, there is more manufacturing of plastic items happening here, bigger factories being set up, but still, by and large, China is better for plastic items as well. In terms of the items that are good, of course, textiles, any kind of fabric, especially cotton and organic cotton. So organic cotton is really a really high quality over here. We're seeing a lot of growth in baby wear, very high quality, organic cotton, kids and baby wear. That's a very fast-growing category. Also, toys so there's a lot of focus on the toy industry in India. Because what happened a couple of years ago, Bradley, that there was a bit of a tension between India and China at the border I'm sure you must have heard of it. It was probably around COVID times and so you know. China did a couple of things to you know, sort of in defense, and then India sort of retaliated and one of the things that India did at that time was impose very high import duties on toys being imported from China.   Bradley Sutton: A toy Cold War.   Meghla: Yes, a toy Cold War exactly, and so because there were these cheap toys that were flooding the market over here and of course, that was, you know, affecting the toy industry. But what that has done is that it's given a boost to the toy manufacturing. You know industry in India. So now, for example, a lot of wooden toys are coming up, and not only in, you know, like the traditional mango acacia wood, but like steam beach wood and pine wood, and very high quality and prices are very competitive. In many cases we've actually been able to beat China prices as well for you know wooden toys. Then there are a lot of factories being set up for you know regular like dolls and action figures and you know guns and sort of those types of things. Well, so that's a fast-growing category and a lot of local brands are also coming up and they are in fact exporting. So, there are a couple of local brands that do STEM toys, like India is really good with engineering and mathematics and all of those things. So, STEM toys is another huge category. There are some brands that in fact, we are helping launch them in the US and other markets, so that's another good category. Then I would also say, of course, all the entire handmade sector. So, there's wooden products, metal, ceramic, glass, all of those home decor items. That is still a very big category, especially for Amazon sellers and most sellers we know are finding a lot of success in those categories. Then there's leather, so a lot of beautiful, different types of leather. There are equestrian products, you know garments, shoes, accessories, bags, all of those things. And then I would also say, to add one more, eco-friendly products. So, if you're looking for anything that's made out of maybe cotton or jute or a lot of R&D is being done in alternative materials. So, for example, cactus material or banana fibers. Those are being converted to fabrics and they are used in bags and other kind of accessories, but of course they're not mass materials yet because there are niche and the prices are much higher than a normal material, but still that’s an emerging category.   Bradley Sutton: Okay, interesting. Now, guys if you guys want to you know reach out to Megla to you know, perhaps you know, utilize her sourcing services, just like we did with success, as you saw. You know, one of the easy ways to remember is go to hubhelium10.com and then just type in India and then it'll come up right there, India sourcing network, and you could, you could connect her with her right from this page, right inside of Helium 10. Now I noticed also here on your Helium 10 hub page, it talks about India sourcing trips. So, are you still, have you still been doing, or did you start doing those again after COVID? Like what's the? What's the? You know? Like the cadence, is it once a year, twice a year, once every other year?   Meghla: Yes, we're still doing the trips there twice a year, and we started after restarted the trips after COVID, and the one that we did after COVID we had 70 people on the trip, so that was amazing, and since then we've continued to do. The next trip is coming up in October. So, you know for people who don't know much about the trip, it's basically an eight-day tour to India where we teach you all about sourcing from India. We take you to a trade show that has almost 4,000 export-focused manufacturers, and then we also do some cultural activities and, of course, there's a lot of networking. You get to meet all the different service providers. You can also do factory visits. We can customize the trip so that you are able to find the products that you're specifically looking for, and it's just a very fun experience. And, Bradley, what are you.   Bradley Sutton: What are some of the fun things that you that you do, because I still have been saying for a long time I'm going to go. What do I have in store for me the first time I go on one of these? For the fun side. Obviously, I know the work side, what's going to happen, but what about on the fun side and the food side that's very important to me, as you know.   Meghla: Yes, the food side is amazing because we choose the menus and the restaurants very carefully because India has so much variety in terms of you know, the different food, um sort of flavors and items, like each state of India has a different type of cuisine, so we try to mix and make sure that you get a flavor of all different types of Indian cuisines, we do a Bollywood night. I would say that's the most fun night on the trip. You can basically wear an Indian dress. For men it's the Kurta, which is like a long shirt. Women wear Saris. We buy Saris for everybody. We have a live dance troupe. They're singing and dancing on Bhangra tunes. Bhangra is a very fast-paced band.   Bradley Sutton: I love Bhangra. I have some Zumba routines for some Bhangra songs. Yes, indeed.   Meghla: Yes, amazing. So, we have that, and then we're just, yeah, dancing and singing and drinking and eating, so that's a very, very fun night. And then we also go to Taj Mahal. So, I think that's also very special, because that's one of the seven wonders of the world, and especially if you come with your partner, like your better half, or your spouse, then you can get a picture in front of the Taj Mahal, which is basically a monument that's dedicated to love and romance. So that's also very special.   Bradley Sutton: Okay, all right, interesting So, the next one, is in October, you said.   Meghla: Yes, October 14th to the 21st.   Bradley Sutton: Okay, excellent, excellent. I'll see there's a chance you know I might be going, or I am going, to Maldives, as they do every year, you know, to film one of my every 100 episodes of this podcast, and then this year, I'm actually going to be going from Turkey. I'm speaking at Turkey and I think I want to ask you a couple questions about that it's Segue, but I found one flight that potentially has like a like a set, like a seven-hour layover or something, on my way to the Maldives from Turkey, in India, I think, Mumbai, and so I had never even set foot on soil in India. So, I'm like, all right, maybe that'll be my, my first dip and then next step would be going on the India sourcing trip. So, speaking of Turkey, I believe you said you just spoke at an event there and actually you've expanded some of your sourcing to there. And, like I know, you know Carrie, who works with us here at Helium 10, she was telling me you know she went like on a sourcing trip to Turkey on her own, like last year, for her own Amazon and Walmart brands, and she actually moved some of her manufacturing from I'm not sure if it was in China or Korea, but to Turkey, and has had good success. What, what can you? How did you get you know? Linked with sourcing in Turkey?   Meghla: Yeah, so I was invited to this conference. I mean, we have been thinking about sourcing in Turkey. In fact, I got the domain name turkeysourcingtrip.com last year because we were, you know, sort of exploring that and that's the first thing you do, right, when you have an idea. So, you know, because Turkey is definitely coming up as an important production hub and in fact, somebody told me when I was there that Turkey is the China of Europe. So, if you're based in Europe, if you're sourcing in Europe, then Turkey is like the perfect destination for you. So, I was speaking there at the World Deaf Conference and, you know, I thought that, you know, while I'm going there, I would meet manufacturers and we already had had been having discussions with some sourcing agencies and some sourcing partners over there. So, yeah, I mean, in terms of the products, Turkey makes a very wide variety of products.   Meghla: So, first of all, textiles, like any type of towels, bedsheets, like Turkish cotton is very, very famous and I was, you know, some of the towels that I saw over there at the factories. They were so unique. I've never seen any towels like that. They had beautiful embroidery, some of them had like beads, embellishments, like very, very unique designs. Even the bedsheets were like very different from what you'd find in China or India. Then another thing is that they do a lot of cosmetics. So, there's in terms of cosmetics, it's also like skincare, or maybe shampoos, or you know, soaps, for example, things like that. So, there's a lot of R&D happening at that front as well. There are a lot of brands that I met that were doing vegan and organic. You know, like creams and body. You know body products as well. So that was another category.   Meghla: And then, of course, apparel. So, Turkey does a lot of different types of apparel, whether it's women's apparel, kids or even men's apparel. There are men's suits. They do a lot of linen fabric as well. That's very popular linen and cotton. Then they do things like carpets. In fact, Turkish carpets are very popular. Then there's some handicraft items as well metal and ceramic and those types of things. But I mean exports of those are very minimal. There are also some very good packaging companies that we found so like very high-quality boxes. If you are sourcing some kind of product from there, then you can get the packaging and all done in Turkey as well. Also, the domestic market in Turkey for e-commerce is pretty strong. It's growing pretty fast and in fact Amazon is one of the marketplaces there, but it's not very popular. The popular marketplace is called Trendyol. So that's a local domestic marketplace and you know there is an opportunity for you to also sell in the domestic market on Trendyol if you are sourcing in Turkey.   Meghla: I also saw quite a few like wooden products and very unique designs. I mean that's one thing that sort of differentiated you know Turkey from China or India. The designs are very unique. And then some toys, some very basic kind of toys, like puzzles, some, you know, board games and things like that. So, I mean at first, not a huge variety of products like China or maybe Vietnam, but very niche, very unique, very differentiated. And I mean, if you're in Europe you should definitely, definitely explore Turkey, because it's just in your backyard and you can save on logistics costs and of course, the deliveries can be faster and you can order in smaller quantities as well.   Bradley Sutton: Okay, cool, cool. So, another you know alternative place that not a lot of people yet are sourcing from. That I think sellers should, should look into and I'll be looking forward to when you actually launch that website, because it means you're going to have some events and I love Turkish food too and I so many places I want to visit in in in Turkey, you know Bible history, a lot of Bible history there in a lot of cities and a lot of like Maldives-ish kind of places even that people don't realize on some parts of Turkey. So, I know you'll arrange something good. Just to prove, I wasn't making it up, but I found one of my old videos here of some Bhangra dancing here. Look at the skinny me going and doing some fitness right there. That's me, that's me from like 10 years ago. and even you can see my kids in that in that video leading a fitness class doing some Bhangra dancing there. But, anyways how you know, I already gave you know I told people how they can find you from the Helium 10 hub, but if they want to find you, you elsewhere out there on the interwebs. What are some good ways that they can? They can reach you.   Meghla: Well, I'm on all of the social media platforms, so just search for me on either LinkedIn or Facebook and or Instagram and message me. You can also go to our website, Indiasourcingtrip.com or IndiaSourcing.net, and then Vietnamsourcingtrip.com as well.   Bradley Sutton: Vietnam sourcing too. Yeah, I know that's another hot place. I see a lot of people moving to. Maybe there was just a couple of kind of products, a specialty, but I know a lot of people who are not only moving sourcing there, but even some of their operations moving to Vietnam. I spent about a week last year there and the last couple of years really nice, really nice place to visit. So maybe next time we can talk a little bit more about that. Do you have like a 30 second tip or 60 second tip you can share with the audience? Could be about sourcing, could be about travel, could be about moving to a country your son has never been to. Whatever kind of tip you want to give, go ahead and hit us with it.   Meghla: Yeah, I would say be adventurous in your business. You have to explore different markets. China is not the only place where you can source products. Sometimes we get too comfortable sourcing in China and like, oh, we're sort of scared to go to these other markets. But there's a whole world out there, like whole different world, and people who are more adventurous and who are willing to take that risk will definitely reap rewards, because there are tons of unique products to be discovered in these alternative production hubs.   Bradley Sutton: Alright. Well, Meghla thank you so much for coming on here for the fourth time, we’ll look forward next year for the fifth time and hopefully maybe by then we can say that I've been on one of your sourcing trips, like I've been planning for years to do So hopefully that happens within the next year or so. But thanks for joining us and we'll see you back here for sure.   Meghla: Thank you so much, Bradley Bye.
7/16/202435 minutes, 33 seconds
Episode Artwork

#578 - The TikTok Shop Opportunity

Unlock the secrets of skyrocketing your e-commerce sales with TikTok Shop! Join us as we sit down with Michelle Barnum-Smith, a leading expert on TikTok Shop, who will reveal why this platform is revolutionizing e-commerce and how you can tap into its immense potential. From unparalleled user engagement to an all-inclusive buying experience that supports brand building and data transparency, Michelle dissects the unique advantages TikTok Shop offers over traditional platforms like Amazon. Get ready to learn how full visibility of sales data and direct customer interactions can transform your business. In this episode, we explore the seamless customer journey on TikTok Shop from sparking awareness to completing a purchase all within the app. Discover how the shift from traditional influencer marketing to a collaborative affiliate model is empowering creators to drive sales through direct rewards from TikTok. We also get into TikTok's growing prominence as a search engine for younger generations and the new shopping features that make discoverability effortless. This is a golden opportunity for sellers to leverage TikTok Shop's innovative ecosystem to maximize engagement and boost sales. Prepare to be inspired by real-life success stories and practical tips for setting up your very own TikTok Shop. We cover everything from business registration and linking social accounts to optimizing your listings and content for viral success. Michelle shares invaluable insights on inventory forecasting and the ripple effect of TikTok Shop's success on other platforms like Amazon. Plus, learn the importance of adhering to community guidelines to avoid account suspensions and ensure your business thrives on TikTok Shop. Don't miss out on this comprehensive guide to navigating and conquering TikTok Shop's dynamic marketplace! In episode 578 of the Serious Sellers Podcast, Bradley and Michelle discuss: 00:00 - Exploring TikTok Shop for Sellers 02:56 - TikTok's Influence on Consumer Purchases 06:23 - Enhanced Shopping Experience on TikTok 09:32 - Maximizing Sales Through TikTok Shop 11:04 - Reviving Live Selling With TikTok Shop 16:22 - TikTok Shop Viral Success Stories 16:40 - Success Tips for TikTok Shop Setup 19:55 - Maximizing Marketing Opportunities on TikTok 25:11 - TikTok Shop Guidelines and Best Practices 26:40 - Navigating TikTok Shop Suspension Guidelines 33:48 - Effective Creator Outreach Strategy Guide ► Instagram: instagram.com/serioussellerspodcast ► Free Amazon Seller Chrome Extension: https://h10.me/extension ► Sign Up For Helium 10: https://h10.me/signup  (Use SSP10 To Save 10% For Life) ► Learn How To Sell on Amazon: https://h10.me/ft ► Watch The Podcasts On YouTube: youtube.com/@Helium10/videos Transcript Bradley Sutton: TikTok shop is one of the hottest marketplaces in 2024 to sell on. Today we're going to do a deep dive into everything you need to know to get started selling on that platform. How cool is that? Pretty cool, I think. Hello everybody and welcome to another episode of the Serious Sellers Podcast by Helium 10. I'm your host, Bradley Sutton, and this is the show that is our special Freedom Ticket monthly workshop, where we actually film live a training, a deep dive training, into a certain aspect of e-commerce and we put it later into Freedom Ticket so that you guys can benefit from it. But you guys here on the podcast are going to get the benefit of getting this training too. Now today's guest is going to be Michelle Barnum-Smith, who is definitely an expert in the field of TikTok shop and she's going to do a deep dive into like hey, what do you need to do to get started and what are some best practices? You know we've had some people on this podcast who sell on TikTok shop. You guys have heard them doing some crazy, crazy numbers, some of them even doing more than their Amazon business. So if you guys want to know what's involved with getting set up on this platform, this episode is going to be for you.   Kevin King: Now, Michelle I've known for quite some time, and so today she's going to be showing you why you need to be considering TikTok and talking about some of the opportunities that are there and what she's doing to help herself and her clients actually crush it. So please welcome Michelle.   Michelle: Today we've got lots of ground to cover and we're going to be talking about the TikTok shop opportunity. Just like Kevin said and Shivali said, unless you've been living under a rock, it is all the buzz, and rightly so. Some people don't realize this, but TikTok shop was born from a hashtag and the whole idea of TikTok made me buy it. This hashtag has been around for several years and it basically was like hey, I discovered this on TikTok and I went and bought it. And here I'm showing it off again because TikTok made me buy this. And essentially, TikTok shop allows businesses to showcase through engaging short videos, live streams and creator collaborations, and users can discover and purchase products directly within the app, creating a smooth and convenient shopping experience. And we're going to talk about, like, just how powerful this really is for you as brand sellers.   Michelle: So the opportunity of a TikTok shop has never been hotter. I mean, essentially, we're talking about a billion monthly users. They're on the app 17 times a day, with 83% of people saying that TikTok has influenced purchase decisions on what they're doing and what they're buying. So consumers are on TikTok specifically to be entertained. They hang out for hours. One and a half billion monthly user base spending an average of 95 minutes a day on the platform. I want you to think about that. That's like at least three episodes of your favorite show on Netflix. It's, you know, it's like people are just like scrolling, scrolling, scrolling and, um, all, all times of the day, like, like we saw in that previous stat of 17 times. You know, essentially starting the app 17 times a day, kind of crazy. Um, they offer a frictionless buying experience from creator to product page, to checkout to back to scrolling in seconds, which is one of the huge reasons why TikTok and TikTok Shop is such a powerful opportunity for sellers, right this second, so you can literally go from an organic discovery experience to a checkout experience in just seconds, and you can amplify that opportunity with some certain promotional activities that we'll talk about. So, bottom line, TikTok shop really helps build brands, not just sell products, so they have more high quality traffic, more sales and repurchases, have full visibility of data, end to end loop closing data.   Michelle: So one of the things that I love so much about TikTok shop is having previously just used TikTok to drive traffic to Amazon. So I have tried it a whole bunch and it is so frustrating because Amazon's a black hole. They don't share data back with you. So if you've ever tried to run ads, drive influencer content, even do social media like, just focus on the social media side of TikTok or Instagram or Facebook or whatever it might be. There's no data back from Amazon, even with using attribution, because Amazon attribution is 55% inaccurate to actually tell you what converted, what drove sales. It's kind of like a guess most of the time and if sales rise you're kind of like, okay, well, what contributed to that In TikTok shop? You know exactly what contributed to that sale. You know exactly what social posts drove how many sales. Which affiliate is your number one affiliate? If you're running ads, you know exactly how those ads are performing.   Michelle: It allows you to speak directly with your viewers as well, your customers, your prospects, every step along the way. It's you the face of the brand, your brand, interacting directly with customers. So most of the time, most sellers, most consumers, don't realize that there's sellers behind their brands on Amazon. They just think that they're buying a product on Amazon. That's not the case with TikTok. TikTok gives sellers opportunity to interact directly with the customer on every step of the customer journey. So there's no question who is? You know who this relationship is with and there's serious marketing opportunities, and I'm such a marketing geek. I love all of the marketing opportunities that TikTok has. Just this, just today, they released promo codes. Super excited about that. So let's talk about the full shopping journey within TikTok. Essentially, TikTok allows you to discover through shoppable content and through short videos and lives to select, basically go and learn more from about the product on the product detail page and then actually check out and buy, place orders and check out without ever leaving TikTok. So why this is so significant? As a marketer and as a seller myself, if I have, let's say, the counter to that is on Instagram and if you've ever been influenced on Instagram, you know, let me know, raise your hand, you're watching, you're watching that content and then the person is saying, oh, go to the link in my bio and you go to the link in your bio in, and it's some linktree that may or may not have been updated and that link might take them to Amazon. Take you to Amazon, where their Amazon storefront is like laid out, all for you to have to sort through just to find the product that you were interested in that caught your attention for just a second, that interrupted your entertainment experience that you were there on Instagram to experience, and now you can't even find what it was that caught your attention. You just give up in frustration.   Michelle: What I love about TikTok shop is that you can go from being entertained seeing a shoppable video, seeing something that a creator is promoting, to all the way to checkout in just seconds and back into your entertainment. That experience has very little interruption. So TikTok has several ways to checkout. Essentially, you have the opportunity to go from a shoppable video to a TikTok shop where you can see that brand's full lineup of offerings, and go to the product detail page where you can then check out. But this is not typically the shopping experience. Usually, it's you see a video. It takes you directly to the product detail page and then you just check out. These are the things and ways that you can build your brand on TikTok shop directly. So let's talk about the customer journey on TikTok versus Amazon. So previously TikTok, when it was just a social media channel, sat a little bit higher up in the customer journey. So if you guys aren't familiar, the customer journey is this idea of a funnel or this process where somebody goes from awareness to consideration, to purchase, to customer service, to going deeper in their rebuy or loyalty to that specific brand. So previously, TikTok the app, the social media side of TikTok was just in the awareness phase, the awareness and consideration phase. Just like Instagram, it was like a place of discovery, a place of entertainment, a place to maybe get educated, but it wasn't a place to purchase. That was where you would go to Amazon, and Amazon fit squarely in the consideration phase, like I need more information, I'm aware of my need already and then I'm going to purchase. So essentially, Amazon is solution solving. It's a search engine for buying. Customers are already aware of a need. They search, research and buy on Amazon.   Michelle: Buyers don't hang out on Amazon for fun or entertainment, despite Amazon's best efforts with Amazon Lives, Amazon Post, Amazon Inspire, and that's really why TikTok shop has taken over in that regard. Not necessarily like I'm not saying that Amazon's going away anytime soon. Obviously that's a huge opportunity, but TikTok shop now owns the entire customer journey, from awareness through consideration, purchase, the customer service experience, all the way to rebuy opportunities, average order value increases, um rebuy rates, all sorts of things that TikTok shop makes available to sellers to be able to do and accomplish all within the TikTok shop platform. Are you guys seeing the potential and the opportunity here? And, as a marketer, this is why I'm so passionate about it, because if you own the awareness, if you are the one creating the awareness of the need and you immediately go into a checkout scenario, you win. The checkout is not okay we're making you aware and then you're being taken to a page where you and 100 other competitors are then brought up with different options and people are overwhelmed with options. It's not like that. It's literally going from awareness to checkout to back to entertainment in a matter of seconds. So TikTok really comes down to need awareness. Their focus is on entertainment and education and their goal is to keep users on the platform with their addictive algorithms. Users are made aware of products and the purchases is done within TikTok shop with quick checkouts and then buyers are back to scrolling within seconds. So that's really kind of the crux of TikTok shop there and live selling. I don't know if you guys have seen have been on the platform yet, but live selling it really had its heyday. I feel like you know as far as US consumer behavior goes in, like the late eighties, early nineties, Saturday morning infomercials Anybody remember those?   Michelle: I know I was like, always sucked in. I was always sucked into those Um. And then there's QVC and home shopping network where, you know, basically little ladies hang out to buy kitchen kitchenware, but TikTok shop, specifically, is bringing live, selling back, and it's crazy's crazy, the amount of organic viewers you get checking out your products live, seeing what you have to offer live, you know, and it's a form of entertainment, so they're already on there to be entertained and then they get to watch you pitch whatever it is that you have. That's kind of crazy. And also creators we have this. Creators have been kind of like put up on this pedestal as influencers, right, and this kind of title and with that has come a little bit of a combative nature. When it comes to working with brands, right, how many of you have worked with an influencer where you've reached out to them, you've tried to recruit them and they're charging like a couple hundred dollars of post to like two thousand dollars a post, five thousand dollars a post for the honor to get to work with them. Anybody experience that. And then you're like, um, what did I get from that? I got a post. Did it do anything, right? So the awesome, the awesome thing with working with creators now is that they essentially become affiliates because TikTok is rewarding them for sales that they make through the platform. So creators are now motivated to work with brands and to push products and seek out opportunities. It's no longer just like oh well, I'm a creator and so my creative needs are above your needs as a brand. Now they're willing to be more collaborative with brands in and focusing on content that converts and that drives sales, because, at the end of the day, they want to make money right and we all want to make money, and so it makes it more of a win-win relationship. So that's one of my favorite things about this kind of shift is it goes from the honor of working with a creator and an influencer to now like okay, we're affiliates and we're in this together.   Michelle: So there's kind of four native ways to discover and buy on TikTok. There's the browse area, which is shoppable videos. That's what you would generally see if you're just scrolling through TikTok. You're going to have some content that is just entertainment content. You're going to have content that's educational and informative and that sync to and our shoppable videos, basically, and shop pages. That's where you know brands show up with their brand presence, um, live shopping, like we discussed, and the shop tab. So that's the new kind of search functionality within TikTok. That's all about finding and discovery and searching for solutions. It's kind of crazy, but TikTok has now become a search engine for a certain demographic. Anybody who's less than 25 years old, instead of going to Google with their questions first, they're going to TikTok with their questions first, and it used to be that videos were what was served first in the search results and now it's product. Are you picking up? What I'm putting down? Like this is this is a significant opportunity. This is such a crazy shift and I will say that every almost like 80 to 90% of the in TikTok shop contacts that I have were recently recruited from Amazon. Like Amazon employees are moving over to TikTok shop just like clawing their way over here. So it's very soon there's gonna be some aspects that are native to Amazon that we'll start seeing show up in TikTok shop, especially this kind of search portion, the shop tab, and then the buying experience, like we've talked about, is very seamless, from the product page to the checkout page. You literally can like sync your Apple Pay with TikTok shop, click the side of your phone gosh and be back to doom scrolling in seconds, if I haven't, you know, beat that into you enough.   Michelle: But let's talk about this idea and this question is TikTok shop just a distraction for you as sellers? I hear this kind of objection a lot, and from really big sellers, and so I'm a little surprised. I'm always a little surprised because, like Kevin said, I think that if you have an opportunity to make money, are you going to say no to that opportunity, especially when it's relatively zero to low cost to get started? You already have inventory. You just bring it over to TikTok. So let's talk about just some case studies really quick. Every time I talk to an Amazon seller who is looking to expand off Amazon or diversify their revenue off Amazon, they're usually happy with like, hey, if I can get 5% of my Amazon sales off Amazon, like my Shopify site or Walmart or Etsy or something, I would be happy if just 5%. So here we have a few sellers and I'm just going to cruise through here. This brand got serious about TikTok shop beginning of April and year to date, they are 8% of their Amazon sales on TikTok shop. This brand launched in September of 2023 with TikTok shop. They're one of my brands and we immediately went viral. Immediately, like the bestseller that we had became a bestseller on TikTok shop and then, as we got to know our audience a lot better and affiliates a lot better, launching products on TikTok shop with them, we saw halo effect on Amazon. Every single time that we launched a new product on TikTok shop it would go viral. It would go viral on Amazon as well. Rank would skyrocket and along with sales. So their year to date revenue is 11%.   Michelle: Our biggest struggle with this brand is every time we go viral. Like it's really hard to forecast inventory for going viral. So we keep running into like our bestsellers going out of stock because they just take off. They just take off, so that I guess that is like one of the sides of TikTok shop that is a warning is that your shop could go viral and with your inventory. This seller I did a big training in Cancun back in February and in and around TikTok shop this seller was doing two sales a day before my training and after that, um, 180 sales in the week following. So I was a little proud of that. And then subsequently, uh, we've been working together and now their brands, their, uh, they have 15% of their total brand revenue, uh, of their Amazon revenue they're making on TikTok shop. I'm not going to talk a lot about these brands, because these brands are just like killing it. They're 16% of Amazon sales for this brand. This brand, gosh, they're just like. I just met with their category manager last week, their new category manager. They're number one in their category on TikTok shop, all of TikTok shop, and their year to date is 17% of their Amazon sales. So I guess you have to ask yourself, like, is it worth getting started? Like, yes, I think the answer is obvious, right, like I'm not doing a sales pitch here guys. I don't like this is you already have the inventory, right? You're already selling on Amazon. It's not too much more difficult to extend, uh, what you're doing and get started with that same inventory on TikTok shop as well. So, but there's some nuances to it and I want to talk about those nuances. So there are some keys that are necessary to a successful setup on TikTok shop. So this is where we're getting a little bit down into some specifics. On setup, I am not walking you through step-by-step a setup step-by-step at this point. This is not necessarily how to. This is more of kind of like lessons learned from setting up over 30 brands personally on TikTok shop and some of the nuances, some of the troubleshooting, some of the kind of like things to avoid, basically from a high level perspective.   Michelle: So this is kind of my setup checklist to be successful, this is what. These are all the things that you have to do one time during a setup. You need to get through your business registration. You need to complete that. You need to link a TikTok social account that is US based based with your TikTok shop seller account that is US based. You need to create or connect a TikTok ads manager to that account ads manager account to your TikTok shop account. You need to get your shipping set up and your listing set up and your content optimized for TikTok shop. You need to import available reviews, meaning, if you have like and this is all legal TikTok shop owns well, TikTok is owned by a company called ByteDance and ByteDance owns lots of different tech companies. One included is the main tool that's used for importing reviews. So if you have a Shopify site or another website with reviews on it, then you can bring those reviews over. If you don't, you can import reviews from Amazon to your website and then import those reviews from Amazon. It's a little bit of a process. It's a process, but you only have to do that once. To help you build up, to start the process of building your review presence, you need to select and implement promotions for your listings, such as pre-shipping with qualifications, product discounts, flash sales. Now the new promo codes that are released, and for select accounts, if you qualify, there's now a customer marketing whole section where you can go back and offer, you know, present offers in app. So showing up in the customer's TikTok inbox, basically like they already bought from you once, or, if they're a potential client, you can get directly inside of TikTok users' inboxes with your offers. My marketing heart, it just loves this from an opportunity perspective and we can actually measure how many sales converted from those messages. I love email marketing, I love SMS marketing, I love all of that, but sometimes we just can't close all the loops. And when we're talking native platforms and the marketing opportunities that are native to that platform, we're able to see all those loops close. When it's when we're talking native platforms and the marketing opportunities that are native to that platform, we're able to see all those loops closed and the associated data with that. So we know what further to invest in, what's working, what's not working, and then, of course, they're the final step in success. A successful setup is making sure that you have an affiliate plan set up for affiliates creators to find your products and to start promoting them and to make sure free samples are available. We'll show that here in a second.   Michelle: Okay, the second thing that you need to make sure that you do is to review the prohibited products list. So just because you can sell something on Amazon and Shopify doesn't mean you can sell it on TikTok shop. And this is probably like the number one thing that I see sellers screw up on, um, that they just like rush to get all of their products on TikTok shop and all of a sudden uh, they didn't ever check prohibited products and all of a sudden their account gets deactivated. Um, because they're promoting products or promoting it in such a way that's against, that's either prohibited products or against community guidelines in how you talk about it. So the most suspensions and account deactivations could be avoided by checking this first. So essentially, just, I mean you could even just search for it TikTok shop prohibited products policy and go on there or also look at their restricted categories on there as well to see is my product a prohibited product? I've been surprised how many products are not allowed on TikTok shop that are allowed on Amazon and, of course, on Shopify. You can sell whatever the heck you want to. So it's definitely one of those things that just because you can sell it somewhere doesn't mean you can sell it on TikTok shop.   Michelle: And this is just from a having been through it so many times. Business registration is not what it used to be. In September, I was able to get just like a ton of brands on TikTok shop with very little effort. Now there's a few more steps. Now there's a few things that kind of slow people down. It's amazing to me how many sellers just like give up. They just roll over and they're just like oh no, I can't get it to work. And I'm like guys, you are Amazon sellers, it is selling on Amazon is not an easy thing. Why are we giving up so easily? Have some like, have some resilience here. Also, TikTok shop like says oh, your account setup failed. I wish they would use different language, because sometimes it's not true failure and sometimes it's like they're just um, you get to a certain place in the process and then the system is moving you forward, but it needs more information, like you need to submit additional documents or you need to submit them in a certain way, and so it says failure, but really it just means like you need to go add more, add more documentation or whatever it is that they're actually asking for. So my advice to you is just keep pushing forward, keep pushing through that. It is worth it in the end. And just as a little like hack is any requested documentation, even if it says that they accept PDFs and PNGs, only submit them as JPEGs. Like their system, their bots read JPEGs and more often than not they don't read PDFs. So just, even if it says it'll accept a PDF, just submit it as a JPEG. Okay, cause it will help you. And especially if you're talking to support, support. It's so crazy because support can't see submitted PDFs or PNGs, but it can see submitted JPEGs. Does that make sense? So that's a little, a little note for you to take and make sure that you're doing Okay.   Michelle: This is relatively new and this has to be. This is around community guidelines. Community guidelines were updated mid last month and essentially it's just saying hey, this is the way that we behave on our platform. So there's, they become a lot more strict about what creators as well as sellers can and can't say on their product. You know, on the platform and that includes your listings and what you say about your products, especially, um, you know if something has an effect on weight or weight loss, physical performance or physiological effects or changes. So in this example, I had a seller reach out to me and they're like I don't know what I did wrong, I don't know why this account is frozen, or this product is frozen, I don't know what's wrong with it. And all I had to do was read through the title to see what the issue was. They're essentially saying this eliminates snoring and enhances facial structure and post-workout recovery claim, claim, claim, claim, claim, like you're physiological effects, physical performance, eliminate snoring. You can't say that on Amazon had. Like how can you say that? Like you can't say that on TikTok shop either? Um, and if you have any product in and around weight loss, I'm not saying it's not possible to sell on TikTok shop, it absolutely is. But how you talk about it is really critical. You cannot say weight loss, you cannot say metabolism, fat burning oh my gosh. I had another brand that was just like beside themselves. They were so like offended that TikTok shop suspended their product, their you know key seller, and I was looking through their account. It was like weight loss, metabolism, dah, dah, dah. And I'm like you can't say those things. You. You failed TikTok, you know like. You showed up like, oh well, we can sell it on Shopify. Yes, you can sell it on Shopify, because on Shopify you can say whatever the heck you want about your product. There's nobody policing what you can and can't say on your Shopify site. But this is their market and so they get to say what you can and can't say. And it's not just what you say in the text, in your title, in your bullet points, it's also what you say in the images, on the products themselves as well. So if you have packaging that you're showing and it's making claims. You got to scrub that. You got to like, get rid of it if you have infographics. So that's why I say you're not just pulling over everything that you've created for your Amazon listing or your Shopify listing. You got to be really careful in what you're bringing over and being aware of these community guidelines and what you can and can't say. These are the main ones. It's worth looking at, it's worth reading through and I do talk about that extensively in my course where I detail and outline it, but these are the top ones.   Michelle: Okay, focus on your bestsellers. I often see that the second somebody gets started on TikTok shop, they bring their whole category, their whole catalog of offerings over at once and I really advise you to just test the opportunity and to learn the platform and which of your products is the best opportunity first. So too many products are a distraction to affiliates and your ops team. So, like in this example, this brand brought over gosh all of their products and anytime that they were doing creator outreach they basically all of their creator and targeted plans was just like hey, here's everything that we sell and that's a lot, that's too much. So instead we shifted their focus to okay, what's your best seller on Amazon, what's the one with the best reviews, the strongest call to action, the most obvious for how it helps a consumer? And they're like, okay, this one, their free sample request took off, the affiliate performance took off, their sales took off. So just don't flood. It's a distraction for your team. It's a distraction when you start to reach out to affiliates, so just focus on your best sellers first. Now hear me out. This is probably the biggest warning that I have for you. Second to prohibited products okay, so this is probably the biggest area that I want you to be really careful with. And don't use the shortcuts, okay. So oftentimes I see that sellers are you're on Amazon, you're on Shopify and there are apps available within TikTok shop where you can just sync your Shopify account or sync your Amazon account and sync over your listings. So all of your listing content immediately gets imported into TikTok shop, and I have seen so many issues with this. Like I've said so many times, there's things that you're saying on your listings that you can't say in a TikTok shop, and what happens, guys, is that your listings are not reviewed by human beings, right, they're reviewed by bots, and what I have seen happen so many times is that people have seen those listings and they bring over their entire catalog, like we just talked about, and they're making claims or bringing over prohibited products or something like that that they didn't know.   Michelle: I didn't know and immediately they get account violations and account violations and they get a million account violations and then their account gets suspended because there's a limit to your account violations that you can receive, and then you lose your account, your account gets deactivated and it's over before you begin. So that's an extreme example, but I have seen that too many times to count what also happens, especially in the case of Shopify. For example, if you're syncing your listings, let's say you want to make a change to your TikTok shop listing, like your price or your title or something like that, because your listings are synced with these apps. You can't do that because Shopify and the Shopify listing owns the TikTok listing, so you have to go and make the change on Shopify If you want to make that change, show up on TikTok. You see how that's a problem, right? So and it's not an easy fix, it's not, it's not just like a quick separation, um, because I have a seller, like I've talked about. He's number one in his category and he set this up, his like. When he first got set up, an account manager told him to do this and they didn't know. These account managers have no clue, they really don't, um, and so he is dealing with this issue. If he were to try to separate at this point, he would have to create a new ASIN, for lack of a better term. A new listing for one of his best sellers and one of the big areas of social proof on TikTok shop is to see how many people have purchased the product. He would lose all of that history on that listing that now has like a hundred thousand purchases. So, yeah, it's, it's like a serious deal. So please don't do that. If you're wanting any kind of true shortcut, use the bulk uploading options. This is new the import product upload accelerator. Go this route if you're looking for shortcuts. But, like I said, I really do want you to like set up your listings manually first, at least the first couple, so you understand what TikTok is really looking for, so you can then go and add more products in the future.   Michelle: Offer free shipping. Oh, my goodness, we're running out of time, guys, we'll send you these slides. Basically, bottom line, you set up the free shipping opportunities within the promotions tab and not when you're setting up your shipping templates and your shipping solutions. So it's a promotion and you can apply all sorts of qualifications to qualify for free shipping and fulfilled by TikTok is now a thing, and they're gonna start pushing this really, really hard. So start with your Amazon inventory, start selling via Amazon MCF syncing with TikTok shop. Once you've proven the opportunity for your brand, immediately apply for FBT as soon as you set up your TikTok shop account so that when you prove like, hey, is this an opportunity for me, cause MCF is expensive, you want to get that inventory into FBT and start taking advantage of the opportunities and like super cheap pricing that they have for fulfillment over there. Okay, I'm going to cruise through this, but, just like I showed you, there's kind of like the setup checklist and then there's the ongoing success checklist. This is what you need to do ongoing, daily, weekly, monthly to be able to make sales on TikTok shop. Really, what it comes down to is working with creators, making sure you have your free samples turned on. I have my three S's to targeted outreach, which is search, sort and then save. And just a warning if you are using bots or planning to use bots, that gosh. They've now put regulations in place where new sellers are limited and restricted on how many people they can reach out to because of these messaging bots that are out there. So I really recommend focusing on target collaborations versus and reaching out to creators that way, versus messaging and spamming methods. So this is my search and sort and save method. Essentially, you're under the find creator tab and you're searching via relevant search terms for your brand or your category. You're sorting I like to sort by GMB, and if they're fast growing that's even better, because then they're hungry, they're starting to see success, but they're not so successful yet that they you can't get the time of day with them. And then you hit the little save button over here and then when you go to target collaboration up here, you can import your saved folks I recommend at least 50 per day that you're reaching out to via this message.   Kevin King: Thanks everybody for showing up today. We'll be back again next month to do this again on a whole new topic. Remember there's a replay of this, if you missed part of it, in Freedom Ticket inside the Helium 10. So if you're a member of Helium 10 at any level, there's a little button somewhere up around the top in the education section or resources section that says Freedom Ticket. You'll be able to find this recording in a few weeks in there, added as a permanent addition to the Freedom Ticket. So thanks everybody for coming today and thanks again, Michelle.   Michelle: Thank you, bye, guys.
7/13/202435 minutes, 30 seconds
Episode Artwork

#577 - Walmart Seller Success Strategies with SellCord

Join us for an insightful episode where we chat with David Milstein, co-founder of SellCord, about the strategies that drive success on Walmart. David shares an inspiring success story of a client who saw their sales surge from $2,000 to $200,000 per month within just two months by leveraging strategic account managers and Walmart Fulfillment Services (WFS). We also discuss realistic expectations for Walmart sales growth, suggesting sellers aim for 10% to 20% of their Amazon sales, emphasizing the importance of focusing on Walmart to unlock its full potential. Explore the benefits and intricacies of using virtual multi-packs with Walmart Fulfillment Services in this episode. We discuss how virtual GTINs can create multiple listings for a single unit, like multi-packs of shampoo, without additional physical inventory, reducing storage fees and return orders while lowering WFS fees. David also sheds light on pricing strategies, highlighting the significance of the $10 price point, and the current beta status of virtual packs and their anticipated wider rollout, along with the role of promotions in driving sales on Walmart. Listen in as we navigate the intricacies of Walmart's promotional campaigns and recent updates to their item specifications. We cover different types of promotional campaigns such as category-specific events and flash deals, and the strategic advantages they offer. Learn about accessing these campaigns through the growth opportunities section and the newly introduced Item Spec 5.0, which shifts from category-based to product-type-based listings. David also shares essential tips for managing Walmart accounts, including consolidating multiple accounts, transferring reviews from Shopify, and utilizing Walmart's Review Accelerator Program. In episode 577 of the Serious Sellers Podcast, Carrie and David discuss: 00:00 - Walmart Success Stories and Strategies 07:23 - Walmart Virtual Pack and Promotion Strategy 11:08 - New Walmart Promotional and Listing Strategies 11:38 - Accessing Growth Opportunities and New Promo Campaigns 15:55 - Optimizing Attributes for Walmart Ranking 20:36 - Walmart Account Management Strategies 21:01 - Bringing Reviews to Walmart Restrictions 23:58 - Flash Deals for All Sellers 29:05 - PPC and Listing Optimization Strategies ► Instagram: instagram.com/serioussellerspodcast ► Free Amazon Seller Chrome Extension: https://h10.me/extension ► Sign Up For Helium 10: https://h10.me/signup  (Use SSP10 To Save 10% For Life) ► Learn How To Sell on Amazon: https://h10.me/ft ► Watch The Podcasts On YouTube: youtube.com/@Helium10/videos Transcript Carrie Miller: Today we're talking with David Milstein from SellCord and he's going to be talking about some Walmart success stories and some strategies to help you to become successful on Walmart. He'll also be talking about the new item, spec 5.0, and Walmart promotions that can help boost sales.   Bradley Sutton: How cool is that? Pretty cool, I think. Hello everybody and welcome to another episode of the Serious Sellers Podcast by Helium 10. I am your host, Bradley Sutton, and this is the show that's completely BS-free, unscripted and unrehearsed organic conversation about serious strategies or serious sellers of any level in the e-commerce world, and this episode is our monthly live Walmart Wednesday show where we talk about anything and everything Walmart related with different guests, and today's host is going to be Carrie Miller. So, Carrie, take it away.   Carrie Miller: Welcome to another Walmart Wednesday. I'm so excited to have a very special guest today. We have David Milstein here, and so we're going to ask him a lot of questions. He is definitely one of the top experts in Walmart. He definitely has taught me a lot of what I know about Walmart, so definitely a privilege to have him here today. I'm going to go ahead and bring on David. Hi David.   David: Hey, Carrie, it's great to be on. Thank you for having me.   Carrie Miller: Yeah, thanks so much for coming on. So I told them a little bit about you. I mean, you are the co-founder of SellCord and you've been doing Walmart or in the Walmart game for like maybe three or four years now. Definitely an expert in Walmart and very, very knowledgeable about anything. Okay, so let's go ahead. And, David, I don't know if I've done enough justice for you about your background, but can you just tell a little bit about what you do at SellCord and just a little bit about you and your background and anything you want to let us know.   David: Of course. Of course, sure, thank you for the opportunity. So, yeah, so I'm one of the co-founders of SellCord. Uh, we are a Walmart focused agency, so we only work on brands, on their Walmart growth, and we've positioned ourselves to just be exclusively focused in this, in this space, as we understand the future and opportunity that Walmart does have to offer. It's always great to be alongside Carrie, a fellow like-minded individual, who is with us on this Walmart train, so we're excited to chat, as always.   Carrie Miller: Awesome. Okay. So let's go ahead and we're going to just get into the questions, and I think one of my first questions that I wanted to ask you about is because and I'll kind of give you a little bit of background a lot of people say you know, what kind of sales can I do on Walmart? You know if I'm doing, you know millions on Amazon, what can I do on Walmart? But I just wanted to see if you could give us some stories about, like a client who maybe got on Walmart. Maybe they were struggling with Walmart before they came to you and then you helped them to do certain things and they became successful. So, like you know what was the scenario, how did you help them? Any kind of thoughts you can give us about like client success stories would be kind of cool way to start this out.   David: For sure, for sure. Actually, Walmart just did a case study with us on one of our clients. So you go on LinkedIn, you guys could check out like a post on this brand, Simply Magic. Uh, this was a brand you know they have a lot of success just historically, both on Amazon. Actually, they were at Walmart before and they were working with us. They were just trying it out. They were doing about like two thousand dollars a month like really really low business, not really giving it the attention it deserved. They came to us, we met with them and just due to their you know experience, we're able to link them with some really insider people at Walmart to be able to work with like a good Sam, the strategic account manager, and working with like the WFS team, and within two months we're actually able to get their sales to 200k, which is like that's, I don't think that's a normal scenario, like we really did. It went above and beyond with them, but that's just because of the opportunity that they had to offer. Now this is a major, major player the Amazon space. However, we do work with brands of all sizes and we have just general expectations of what you can get from Walmart. We typically like to say you should aim for about 10% to 20% of your Amazon sales. So if you're doing like $2 million, $3 million on Amazon, you should be able to expect $200,000 to $300,000 a year, which is again a very solid opportunity.   David: It's obviously all about the long run, but so many accounts are coming to us. We meet these guys at shows all the time. Hey, I'm not even doing 1%, I'm doing 2% and just talking to them. It'll come down to some of the things we'll speak about in this call like different strategies, but it just often comes down to just focus and really giving Walmart the opportunity it deserves, but getting them up within just a few months the 5%, 10% and then it's about can we grow up more from there? And that's really where the opportunities lie, you know, if there's some more strategies to grow further than 10%, how you can do that and we'll speak, I think, a little bit about that more in this talk, in this podcast.   Carrie Miller: Yeah, Well, what do you think the top things are that they're not doing beforehand? Because I've definitely experienced this where people aren't necessarily doing. You know all the things they could do possibly, but what are some of the top things? People like they're just totally ignoring that they would never ignore any Amazon that you see with clients.   David: So so the same way that you would give the opportunity to, let's see your copy on Walmart compared to, let's say, you know, Amazon, Amazon, you're in there like which keywords do I need where in my title and my description? Specifics, like you're very detailed with it, and then you'll just kind of use the same copy on Walmart. Walmart has a completely different guide. You know like they want to have a very different set of copy. They want to have a shorter title descriptions should be more keyword rich and we've done actually a lot of research also on like the keyword tracking and indexing and we found that if you're lacking your main keywords within your copy, those are the highest scenarios of just not indexing for those keywords. It's so related I could show proof. Like not being not having your keywords in your copy, you're just not gonna index. And indexing is even worse than ranking. That means you just don't show up at all for that keyword. And these are basics. That's just one great example.   David: I think another very common one is being in the correct category or product type. We'll speak more about product types a little bit later. Just with Item Spec 5.0. Just being correctly categorized is so important because that determines which keywords you're able to rank for. Just don't make the mistake that Walmart is just some other random marketplace. It's going to be the next big marketplace. You can even see the trajectory of where things have come up thus far and how it compares to Amazon and just the growth it's seeing. And if you're missing that, you're just missing out on the opportunity. Treat it as if it's Amazon right now, you know. Think of it that this is an opportunity that Amazon was seven years ago, five years ago, whatever, whatever specific timeline. But understand that it is an opportunity. And if you had, the chance to do Amazon again now just think of it. What would you just do on Walmart?   Carrie Miller: Yeah, that's all good information. The next thing I wanted to talk about was the virtual packs, because I know I saw you post on LinkedIn about virtual packs that they had just come out. So what, you know what are they? You know how have they been doing? Have you seen a lot of success with them so far?   David: Yeah, for sure I really love the direction Walmart's going with all their beta programs and the new things that they're rolling out. You know I love that they kind of have like Amazon to kind of like go after. You know they don't have to be the pioneer, they can be like hey, this is something that we like about Amazon and they're going all out. You know there's so many new programs coming out and virtual packs is like the latest and greatest. I just want to make a distinction. It's not a virtual bundle, it's specifically a multi-pack on a single unit, and this really what it allows you to do is to create multiple listings for a single unit. So let's say, you're selling a bottle of shampoo. Instead of having to create a second GTIN to list a second bottle of shampoo with it, you can now create a virtual GTIN and you can do up to as many as you want. And where the real benefits come in is actually through using WFS for the fulfillment. So oftentimes you know you might want to list a three-pack or a four-pack or a five-pack and then when you send it to WFS it doesn't actually sell, and then you have to deal with storage fees, you have to do a return order. It's just such a pain.   David: So what this allows you to do is just to have one unit. You just send that into WFS and WFS will just create the virtual packs for you. And what's even nicer is that they will have actually consolidated and lowered WFS fee. Depending on how many units, for two units they reduce it by like a dollar for each one. You can look at the like. There's a great guide about this from Walmart where they give you the specific breakdown of the fees. But it's just a really good opportunity to expand your assortment and offer multi-packs where you might not necessarily have that opportunity. It also works really well when it comes to, let's say, you're in a category where, let's say, if you're under $10, there's an 8% commission break. So you think if you go two pack, if you had a separate two pack listing, you'd be paying that 15% fee because it's above $10. But with with virtual packs, you actually still locked into that eight percent fee as long as, like, the average price is lower. So that's really nice, you know, it's just like an opportunity that people aren't necessarily factoring in I just want to make a really cool point, though, about that is there's also in WFS if your products are under ten dollars. This is something actually people don't really know much about. I'm not sure why if your products are on WFS and your retail is under $10, there's a dollar fee that gets attributed to your product. So if you're selling it under $10, even if it's a multi pack of two and it's selling for $19, you still have to pay that dollar fee twice. So it's very important to factor in your pricing and how that impacts both your WFS and your fee.   Carrie Miller: That might actually be a reason to kind of lower your price if you're just at like the 12 or 13 dollar mark, maybe I don't know. I guess you'd have to do the numbers but.   David: It's kind of. It's kind of a hack. I like, like, I call, I call like the 10 perfect price.   Carrie Miller: Yeah.   David: It's exactly 10, because at 10 you don't have the WFS fee for a dollar, but if you're in certain categories you're still in the eight percent. So it's kind of like if you're at ten dollars on one cent, you're at 15% commission, and if you're $9.99, there's that extra dollar WFS fee.   Carrie Miller: Wow. So interesting.   David: So it's actually if you're around that price. Yeah.   Carrie Miller: Very, very good to know. And those virtual packs are in beta, right? So when do you think they're going to roll out to everybody?   David: Yeah. So from our information, they have like a virtual pack, a virtual bundle, virtual pack beta that we did months ago that only a limited amount of sellers got in, and other rolling it out across the board. The initial release was two weeks ago, I think on the June 13th, and then they're also going to be doing early sometime in July, I believe that should be the rest of the sellers that should be live for everyone and I'm pretty sure that's what. It's not confirmed, but we'll find out next month. You know, if you don't, you don't have it. It's a great opportunity. You know, open a case, reach out to your strategic account manager if you have one. Ask for these programs. You know they're here to help you and they'll try and get you in wherever you can.   Carrie Miller: Okay, so let's move on to another topic, and I want to talk about promotions. So let's go ahead and just talk about, like, what types of promotions does Walmart offer for sellers to participate in?   David: Totally. So, I mean promotions is such a great topic on Walmart. I think, after advertising or even combined with advertising, promotions is going to be the best way to grow your listings. Kind of referencing that previous case study we spoke about, the way we were able to see such insane results so quickly is because we enabled these items to go into promotion, that to really grow. And so just to speak about, like, the different types of promotions on Walmart, there's two main categories that exist. There's promo campaigns, which are like category specific and they happen during a specific set amount of time. For example, there's a July event happening throughout the entirety of the month of July and then you have different events here and there. You have some highlighted special events. You know that we just had like Walmart Plus week this past week and you have like Black Friday like, but there's generally more like you know this is allergy season or like some like some random home and cleaning week, like something that they come up with. You know just where they're trying to get some products in and you could automatically enroll in that. If you go to growth opportunities, you'll see promo campaigns.   David: If you don't have access to that just open a case and you'll be able to get access to that. You have to be an admin on the Solid Center account, which is pretty obvious, and you'll be able to roll your products in there and just be able to participate in that. And then another type of campaign which is called Flash Deals which is kind of similar to Flash Picks on Amazon, the difference being lightning deals on Amazon are Lightning deals are a single day, versus Flash Deals on Walmart run for a whole week and it's every week, I believe Sunday through Saturday, that it runs through a promo for your product and you can get in there with a basic 10% off and you can really roll through your catalog. You have to get approved for it, but you can't do back-to-back for the same product in two weeks, but you can do it every four weeks per product and it's actually a really, really great way to be able to quickly move your products because you get put into a special flash deal page and if you go to Walmart's home page, there's always a little icon for a lightning symbol. You can click it and, depending on how well your product does, it will fluctuate in its rank amongst the deal. So if you push a lot of ads, you'll actually quickly be able to move up the list just because you have a high conversion rate. Even if they're not clicking on the flash deals page, your listing just moves better. So you'll move up on the ranks and actually able to fly through units. Like that it's interesting. We've seen higher conversion rate. I mean it makes sense at a cheaper rate but very like a 30, 40% increase in sales, dollar wise, not even units specifically dollars. So even at the 10% discount, which is not a lot, you're still able to really kill it over there.   Carrie Miller: So do you have to have a strategic account manager for that? I've noticed a lot of accounts don't have access to those Flash Deals or Flash Picks.   David: I would say just open up a case. Yeah, I think with Flash Deals, Flash Picks it used to be called Flash Picks. They changed it to Flash Deals. No, that's Walmart, though wuickly changed things on the fly just to sound better, but open up a case. If you don't have a strategic account manager, just that case should be able to get it for you.   Carrie Miller: Cool, yeah, let's go ahead and talk about something that I just saw roll out recently, and it's the Item Spec 5.0. Can you just tell everyone what, what the Item Spec 5.0 is and how it can help with the visibility of products, or just any information you have on the Item Spec?   David: Yeah. So this is. This is one of the bigger buzzwords you know happening right now in the Walmart space and it's just because of how impactful this is for your listings and really planned forward with Walmart. Uh, Item Spec 4 came out quite a while ago and what they did was they changed the number of categories you were able to list under to like from like 20 something to like 77, and now, with Item Spec 5.0, they're doing it in a different, a different style. It's based on product type. That's how you set up your product, your items, rather than doing it in a general category, you now have to actually select the product type. This is similar to like my experience with Amazon. The minimal experience that I've had in the past with their flat files is you have to select, like, a product type prior to uploading it, so it's not a similar idea on Walmart. So I understand if you have a big assortment and you're trying to come up with how you could quickly list it. It could be a little bit harder now because you can't just generalize it into Home and Kitchen. You have to find your product types. But previously Walmart would automatically select the correct product type for your item and you can change it. But now that it's forced into the product type, as like the initial start, you do have to do a little bit more research on listing. But what's the point, aside from just the change in how you list your product and how you do edits to your product, what's the goal of what they're doing here.   David: So this is actually, I expect, 5.0 was previously first released on actually the 1p side. So if you're doing edits through item 360 or supplier one, you should already have familiarity with this and all that was already done by product type for a while. And what it does is it enables a whole bunch of more attributes by product type. So each category has, like its list of predetermined attributes, but it didn't tell you which ones you should fill out for this. Like it could be in sports and like you're selling, you know weights and it's like what sports team is this? It's not applicable to your weights, you know. But then if you have let's say you're selling now with the new product type if you're selling something related to like a sports, like an actual sports team, it'll ask you for the sports team, but if you're selling something that's not relevant, it won't make it a required category for you. So it's basically they make attributes that are dependent on your product type, which is really cool in the flat files they'll gray out certain areas and it'll actually have like recommended attributes that you should be filling out based on your product type.   David: So it's a lot more dependent. It's a lot more granular, which helps you fill in the correct detail with mine. This is like the number one thing that people are just what attributes do I fill out? There's just so many and some of them are useless, but like what's important. So now that with 5.0, I think it's only going to get better and better, Walmart's going to keep showing even more information on how to utilize it, but with this it enables you to actually see more attributes that were previously only restricted to one fee, which is interesting, as well as which attributes they recommend that you do fill out in order to rank better. So how does it impact your rank? I think this is like leaning into that Walmart's actually trying to not necessarily focus so much on the. You know, obviously, conversion rate is the number one driver of rank right now, but they want to have attributes actually have a bigger impact on your rank, because discoverability to them is something that's so important. So if you have like a very specified search, they want to be able to show your product, not just because of your relevancy from keywords, but also your relevancy due to attributes. So that's why it's so important to fill them out.   David: I want to sort of tip about Amazon Fill out every attribute you can, even if it's just as N/A as long as that's an option, obviously or just type in something basic, even though it's not applicable to your product, just so that you have everything filled out. If anyone ever comes searching for you, you have literally all the information you need there. It might take you some extra time, but it's totally worth it because you're then setting yourself up for future success. It also limits the ability for someone to hijack your listing with content rights issues. Someone could just put your listing in and they could fill out one attribute and now all of a sudden, your listing's content rights restricted for that one thing which could be some miscellaneous attribute. So there is the opportunities for you as a seller and also opportunity for people that might want to try to harm you. Not recommended. But there is so much happening with Item Spec 5.0 and I'm excited to see the great impact because it is it is slowly rolling out for a lot of sellers. It's not fully live for everyone. We're able to see from the UI if there's like an add items or update items feature. You can see from your items page. You'll know if you're like in 4.0 or if you're still in a Harfian 5.0. So a lot of cool stuff there and excited to see what comes.   Carrie Miller: So if you download it and still in the 4.0, do you just write a case to ask to get the Item Spec 5.0? Is that?   David: I don't think they're going to help you with that. I don't think so. I think it's just going to like they'll just tell you like they might not even know what they're talking about, honestly, in that case, but they'll also just say it’s rolling out. You’ll get it when you get it.   Carrie Miller: Okay.   David: Yeah, I wouldn't I wouldn't push for you to ask your Sam If you have a Sam, maybe it's worth off to pick it up to them but oftentimes they'll also just say, you know, you're you'll get it in in September, you know. Hopefully everyone gets this sooner than later.   Carrie Miller: Definitely. Um, somebody in the comments said that the drop downs in spec 5.0 are not working. I don't know if you have any. Have you had any any experience with that, with the drop downs not working or kind of some glitches with this, with the spec sheets?   David: Interesting. So the drop downs are possibly for if it's great, look, if it's grayed out, is that what it is? It's something that's grayed out. But if it's grayed out it's not relevant to that product type. And is this specifically in a flat file? Because you'll notice when you go to edit an item and through, like the item page, it will. It will be a whole new layout. It's going to look a lot cleaner, a lot newer and instead of having three different tabs, it's all going to be on one page going down. Are you experiencing the same issues there? There are definitely issues and actually as of today, if you log into SolidSign, you'll see a line on top that says there's issues with files right now. So they are having some issues right now as a whole Walmart, so don't go crazy on them If it's still not working in a couple of days and once that banner goes away, that's something to definitely want to take a look at. See if it's something with the flat file, see if you're able to manually edit it. In that case, I definitely suggest opening a case. But I was just working on a file earlier this week and it seemed to be working just fine.   Carrie Miller: Okay, so I'm going gonna go in straight to the questions. We've got a lot of questions up here, so I'm excited about this, a lot of good interaction here. So the first one is we have brands A and B already on Walmart but would like to test B without setting up another account. Can we test list these, these products, on existing account that belongs to A? So I guess like testing products on different.   David: Yeah, yeah, I mean there's, there's absolutely no issue with that, the only thing that you might consider is that it's going to say sold on ship by the store name. So if it's brand A, as long as you're okay with saying like brand B product is being sold on the ship by brand A, like that might be something to consider but there's no issue. But another thing you might want to consider is that if you eventually want to have an account added for brand B, it's a bit of a pain to have to transfer the content rights from account one to account B, but it is possible. If you set up brand portal for brand B on account A, I don't recommend that. You're kind of setting yourself up for future failure. But unless you plan to run everything through one account. We've actually worked with a lot of aggregators unless you plan to run everything through one account, we've actually worked with a lot of aggregators and at first a lot of them had one brand, like one account per brand, and they realized it was just such a disaster. Also think of it from like Walmart's perspective like they don't track accounts together, they don't really group them together, so they treat them as like 10 different accounts and it was just too hard for them to deal with Walmart. Too hard for them, like they would have access to beta programs in some accounts but not others, so it actually consolidated all to one account. It can become a little bit of like a billing issue if you have, like, different legal entities, but I would recommend sticking to one account unless you have a fear of really like getting suspended. But I would just recommend staying clear of doing anything that would get you in that in the first place.   Carrie Miller: The next question is about the best way to bring reviews from Shopify or Amazon, if that's allowed.   David: This is a good question. So there's a few options here. So, firstly, you're not allowed to bring in reviews from Amazon. Amazon officially, according to the terms of service, they own their reviews. You're not allowed to bring them to Walmart. Walmart actually won't even allow you to upload them. Back in the day, you'd be able to get away with it even though it wasn't recommended, but these days you cannot do that. You can, however, bring in organic reviews from Shopify and as well as from other sites as well, just not Amazon specifically. So there is a free version through Walmart. You just go to reviewsindicationwalmart.com. You'll be able to sign up for it. You can work with your Sam to get access to. It is through a company called Aspective. I believe Walmart purchase them. There are other tools as well, like there's the Yotpo, which officially does it. There's also Bizarre Voice, which, if you're like a bigger brand, I want to go that route because it's in the case to many, many platforms. But for most of like Amazon sellers, I find this just very expensive for what you're looking for. So I would just check out again that reviews indication the online economy. You can also message them if you have any questions. Just reviewsindication at Walmart.com, we'll go to them.   Carrie Miller: All right. So the next one kind of goes with it, and it's about you know, is there a fine program on Walmart. So what is the similar program on Walmart?   David: Right. So, Walmart does have what they call the review accelerator program. There is a requirement in order to get into it, which is you do have to have a sale. Recently they did change some things up. It used to be limited to five reviews, now it's up to 10 reviews, and if you work with a service provider. I believe it's up to 20. It's available through growth opportunities. They charge $10 per review. They recently changed the specifics of the program so I don't want to misspeak over here, but if you look in you can see the exact details of like. Walmart is great with their guides, like their guides are amazing and they're typically up to date. Just click on the guides you can read through, like the whole program. But growth opportunities reviews indication, I'm sorry review accelerator program that will give you what you're looking for and you can enroll products. There's even something cool which they say is there, but I've never actually seen it’s something called a pre-purchase. So post-purchase is very common, where someone purchases your product. Walmart will accept the buy and then give them a $3 credit to leave a review, you're not guaranteed to get a five-star review. Just keep that in mind. You could get a one-star review through the review accelerator program, but there's something called a pre-purchase, which I'm not sure when it's going to be enabled, but this actually will allow you to discount an item on Walmart in order to get a review up to 100% off. I've never seen it, but it's something that does exist in.   Carrie Miller: Wow.   David: You can see an option for this. You can enroll your items.   Carrie Miller: The next question is is SellCord able to get my Walmart account access to a Sam? Strategic account manager is a Sam. For anyone who doesn't know.   David: Right. For sure, we can definitely help with that. We work directly with Walmart. We have our own like agency level Sam and we work with them to in order to get a Sam through Walmart. Also, depending on what category and we work with a lot of categories we can even just reach out directly to other Sam's to try and get someone approved. They typically expect you to have good sales somewhere. We've seen randomly accounts get assigned to Sam. Walmart's trying to do like as much as they can, even for the lower end accounts, but for like. If you're like a smaller account, Walmart might not necessarily go for it, but if you could prove like sales to them, either from Amazon or from like another website, that's kind of the best way to get it. But we've had a lot of success with that. If you guys, if you want to reach out, we could definitely give that a shot.   Carrie Miller: All right, here's kind of a follow-up with. The other question Is Flash Deals, are Flash Deals offered to brand owners only?   David: No, you know, it's not restricted. Actually, here's a little fun, little fun fact there's sponsored brand ads, which is actually exclusive to brand owners right through advertising. You're not allowed to do if you sell, if you resell. But there's actually something called sponsored product, sponsored brand, like Flash Deals, which you can use, instead of having like the brand logo, to say flash deals and you can list your items that you're reselling. It's exclusively managed through Walmart you have to work with, like your product manager, but you can definitely run Flash Deals on items that you do not own the brand for.   Carrie Miller: Someone asked where do I download or where do you download spec 5.0 from?   David: It will either be on your account or not when you go to your items page to go ahead and make updates so you have like you have like on the top right Like add items or manage items. You'll just see from there it'll be a little bit of a different UI. Things will look a little bit different than they were before. Previous, it was like it would give you by template. You could update it by category or by g10 match now, just as like by g10 match or like by product or product, something like that. And if you click on like, do by g10 match that's my favorite to do it g10 match, just throwing all your g10s in there and just export the file and you'll see the name of the file will say 5.0, or we'll say something like 4.5.   Carrie Miller: Here's another question, should our brand prioritize matching Amazon's prices on Walmart or focus on offering flash deals?   David: Wow, this is, that's a great question. So, uh, I want to touch on this earlier with. I just want to talk about couponing, which I think would be something that also a long conversation, generally speaking, for most of you. Amazon is your main business and you shouldn't jeopardize your main business because of Amazon. If you're listing on Amazon is bringing in so much more than Walmart you don't want to risk losing your business there. We have found that Amazon is a little slow sometimes to catch price differences. We've been able to run a 10% flash deals for a week and actually be cheaper than Amazon, and the price on Amazon will. We won't lose the buy box and Amazon won't catch up. What I would just recommend is if you could get away with it for as long as you could and let's say Amazon does give you problems. Just quickly change your price on Amazon, just you got a monitor you gotta be on top of your game. What's cool is that coupons, which is also a beta program, is the only way, as of today, they able to actually offer a cheaper price on Walmart than on Amazon without having to lower your Amazon price at all. So there's a lot of strategy around that you could. Also, if you have a Sam, you can work with your Sam to be like, let's say, you want to get into a bigger program where they request like a 30% discount. You could do like 10% strike through and then a 20% coupon. They'll work with you and because they understand the Walmart damage on Walmart issue, I think that's the biggest issue Walmart's trying to deal with is how do you get a promo on Walmart without impacting Amazon? That's why Walmart loves Walmart-only sellers. They love these guys. They don't care about their Amazon, they're all invested in Walmart and there is maybe a strategy to having a Walmart-specific catalog. If you have a lot of different products develop bundles or even go back to virtual packs. Play around with things and see what you can do to differentiate your Walmart from your Amazon listings. There's also you could have a different UPC that you use on Walmart versus Amazon. I'm not sure that's going to last forever, but it does. It is a good way to keep Amazon from price matching your items.   Carrie Miller: Let's see the next question here. Once copy is set up, products are properly categories and PPC is running, other than those two and those three tasks, what? What are other daily, weekly, monthly tasks that SellCord would do to make my Walmart business successful? What could a new customer expect to see SellCord to be working on every month in their account?   David: So it's not just the copy on the categorization, there's also attributes. You know it's played a very big role, kind of spoke about, especially with items spec 5.0. And then PPC is really it's not a set end and forget. It's set up with Walmart. You know you want to make sure that you're constantly, you know, revisiting PPC, checking in daily, seeing how things are going, what's doing better, what's doing worse, especially at launch. It's so important to be tweaking things, you know. You see, we didn't really talk PPC strategy much, but learning what's happening, especially if you're new to Walmart, you can't just expect things to be a certain way. Every account, every listing has its own history, which is just so complex. It makes things so much fun just to be able to learn within each account. There's also constant work that you can do just to see like copy as well. It's not a set and I forget it situation. You want to test something out. You want to learn more keywords and implement them into your copy. You want to try out different categories, different product types, to see if you can succeed in different areas as well. There's also just working with brands to discuss promotion strategies, to just continuously work and figure things out. There's also constant audits you have to do on your listings.   David: Walmart is like I'm not going to say notorious. It doesn't sound nice, but your images could just revert back. Your variation could split up your copy. If you have multiple paragraphs, it's squished into one paragraph. These things happen all the time. There's constant audits that you have to do just to make sure your things are, your content is good, and then it's just about primarily utilizing PPC as well as just promotional strategies to grow and grow, and there's also a lot of tracking information you know you have many items you want to be able to see. Let's say, keyword tracking. You know how. Am I ranking for my main keywords? Am I doing well overall? Is there more opportunity? Do I need to go more aggressively? Because even in ads like, are you ROAS focused or are you trying to just grow general sales? There's so much to go, depending on your strategy, Just like we deal with many, many different size accounts. We deal with accounts that are doing literally $5,000,10,000 a month. And then there's also nine figure Walmart sellers. You know that are PPC isn't necessarily their larger thing. It's about like having a strong pricing strategy because they have to win by $1. And then, not even having big margins, they just have to just make units sell. So so many different strategies depending on the count types.   Carrie Miller: All right. Last question what program is best for keywords on Walmart and for optimizing your listing in general?   David: Okay, so I'm a little biased over here, folks. So obviously Helium 10 is a fantastic tool for any keyword research. I live in Cerebro and Magnet. The fact that they're available for Walmart, I love it. It shows you. I mean, the amount of data that's in there is just fascinating. You can learn immediately what your top keywords are for your product. They have a search volume which is so impactful. It shows you historical so you can see, since it's seasonality, you can see one was this product doing well. It gives you the past, like two years or something like that's great. It'll really show you like where and when you can expect to do well. You also have to do the work you can't just like go here's everything. Do the work, make sure you're not hitting branded keywords, make sure they're relevant to your product, obviously. But it is really solid in terms of just keyword research, very, very highly recommended. In terms of optimization auger listings program-wise. I am also biased here, but that's just because this is what we do. We do listing optimization as a company, so obviously I'm going to plug SellCord, Carrie does Helium 10 have some sort of like AI tool to optimize listings for Walmart.   Carrie Miller: So we do. We have a Listing Builder and as you, basically, you put the keywords in a keyword bank and then, as you write them into your listing, they get crossed off, so you make sure that they're fully optimized. So yeah, we have a Listing Builder that will help you to optimize using the keywords you find with Cerebro for Walmart.   David: I'm sure it's fantastic. I mean, obviously we have a self core strategy, but I mean you guys make amazing tools. Definitely give it a shot.   Carrie Miller: All right, that's all we have. Thank you so much, David, for answering all those questions. We had a lot of great questions, and definitely David's the you know the best to ask all these amazing questions too. So thank you so much, David, for being on. And again, if you are interested in SellCord, David, can you say your email address and how they can get in contact with you again?   David: For sure. You can send us an email to [email protected] S-E-L-L-C-O-R-D.com. You can do [email protected]. If you want just more general, hit us up. Visit our website. Sign up over there. There's a lot to talk about.   Carrie Miller: All right, sounds good. Thank you everyone for joining and we hope you have a great rest of the day. Bye, everyone.  
7/9/202432 minutes, 13 seconds
Episode Artwork

#576 - Amazon PPC Masterclass for Prime Day

Do you want to outperform your competition on Amazon Prime Day 2024? Join us as we explore cutting-edge Amazon PPC strategies with the esteemed Destaney Wishon of BTR Media, who shares her expert predictions and actionable insights to help you skyrocket your Amazon advertising game. With Prime Day 2023 setting a new benchmark at $12.7 billion in sales, we decode consumer behavior shifts and the unique opportunities presented by this mid-year retail extravaganza, differentiating it from Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Our discussion dives deep into the art of managing Amazon ads around Prime Day, emphasizing the importance of defining your primary goal—be it maximizing profit or driving sales. We also unpack the extended attribution window's impact on ad spend, conversion rates, and ACoS. From the advantages of increased pre-event ad spend to capture window-shopping customers to the phenomenal conversion rates during Prime Day itself, we provide a holistic view of how to capitalize on this massive sales event. Destaney’s insights reveal the significance of targeted ad strategies in enhancing your organic rank and BSR, alongside the long-term benefits of acquiring new customers. Get ready to maximize your Prime Day advertising efforts with practical advice on Adtomic Day Parting Schedules. Learn how to control CPCs and optimize conversion rates during peak traffic times, identify high-performing search terms, and strategically adjust bids. We also tackle the challenges of regaining momentum post-stockout, realistic budgeting, and leveraging coupons to boost conversion rates. As we navigate the new pricing rules and the competitive landscape with events like Walmart Plus Week, we arm you with strategies to ensure your brand is well-prepared. Whether you're a seasoned Amazon seller or a new brand, this episode is packed with invaluable tips to help you make the most of Prime Day 2024. In episode 576 of the Serious Sellers Podcast, Bradley and Destaney discuss: 01:22 - Amazon PPC Readiness for Prime Day 04:20 - Prime Day Impact on Shopping Habits 08:56 - Amazon Prime Day Advertising Strategies 13:23 - Maximizing Sales Opportunities Beyond Prime Day 19:29 - Prime Day PPC Optimization Strategies 21:00 - Optimizing PPC Strategy for Prime Day 27:18 - Maximizing Creative Impact in Ads 32:06 - Prime Day PPC Strategy and Sales 35:48 - Maximizing Sales Strategy for Prime Day 36:42 - Price Matching and Marketplace Strategies 39:15 - PPC Spend Strategy for Prime Day ► Instagram: instagram.com/serioussellerspodcast ► Free Amazon Seller Chrome Extension: https://h10.me/extension ► Sign Up For Helium 10: https://h10.me/signup  (Use SSP10 To Save 10% For Life) ► Learn How To Sell on Amazon: https://h10.me/ft ► Watch The Podcasts On Youtube: youtube.com/@Helium10/videos Transcript Bradley Sutton: We continue in our series and helping you guys get ready for Amazon Prime Day 2024 with a special Tacos Tuesday episode with best practices for advertising, not just on Prime Day, but before it and after it. How cool is that? Pretty cool, I think. If you're like me, maybe you were intimidated about learning how to do Amazon PPC, or maybe you think you just don't have the hours and hours that it takes to download and sort through all of those sponsored ads reports that Amazon produces for you. Adtomic for me allowed me to learn PPC for the first time, and now I'm managing over 150 PPC campaigns across all of my accounts in only two hours a week.Find out how Adtomic can help you level up your PPC game. Visit h10.me/adtomic for more information. That's h10.me/adtomic any level in the e-commerce world.   Bradley Sutton: Hello everybody and welcome to another episode of Serious Sellers Podcast by Helium 10. I am your host Bradley Sutton, and this is the show that is completely bs free, unscripted and unrehearsed, organic conversation about serious strategies for serious sellers of any level in e-commerce world. Welcome to a very special edition of Tacos Tuesday. If you guys have noticed, for the last few weeks on, like the podcast and other live streams, we have been focusing on Prime Day readiness. We wanted to make sure that 2024 is your best Prime Day and today we wanted to go deep in specifically talking about Prime Day readiness for PPC. All right, because that’s one of the things that you can still kind of like control up until the day of Prime Day. So that's why we've invited the number one expert in the entire world on Amazon PPC Destaney Wishon here. Destiny, how's it going? Welcome back.   Destaney: Hello, hello. Thank you so much for having me very excited to be here, as always.   Bradley Sutton: Before we get into your training here, do you have any predictions for Prime Day. Like, are you expecting things to be just kind of like normal, business as usual? Are you expecting anything new and unusual this year?   Destaney: I am going to predict that this year is going to be even bigger than last year, which is saying something, because I distinctly remember being up at like 4 am having to adjust budgets last year because everyone was expecting it to be a little bit lower, just due to the state of economy and kind of where we were at with inflation. And it was 9 am and we're like out of budget across the board and conversion rates were double what they were the two weeks prior. So, I was like you know, we're driving a ton of sales, our ROAS looks fantastic, let's maximize this. So, I'm expecting it to kind of see a similar trend and be pretty big this year.   Bradley Sutton: Awesome. I hope that that prediction comes true. Share it. All right, I'm going to go off screen and let you go ahead and take it away. Destaney, that prediction comes true, share it. All right, I'm going to go off screen and let you go ahead and take it away, Destaney.   Destaney: I think when it comes to inventory and deals and content, it's a little bit more of a one size fits all solution. But when it comes to Amazon advertising and Prime Day, there are hundreds of different strategies that you can run depending on where your brand's at from a profitability perspective, from a cash flow and a lifestyle perspective when it comes to repurchasing, inventory and things like that. That's going to influence your Amazon advertising strategy. So, I've always been a big fan of not giving one size fits all solutions. I think everyone who follows me is very familiar with that, and this is no different. Some people are going to go online and say do not increase your budgets, do not change your bids. And some people are going to say, to maximize that opportunity, but it's going to be really dependent on where your brands at. So, kicking things off, let's talk about Prime Day 2023 and why these matters.   Destaney: $12.7 billion in sales. It was an absolute record for their largest annual event 375 million items sold. 37% of US households took part in Prime Day. That is really important. And also consider how many people share accounts you know grandparents, cousins, things like that so it's probably even higher. For being honest, the reason this matter is last year was the largest single sales day in all of Amazon history, and the reason I'm calling this out is because, as customers become more and more familiar with Prime Day, it's changing their shopping habits. For one, everyone knows that the first two to three weeks leading up to Prime Day you log into your app, it's the first thing you see. Right, they do a homepage takeover, letting you know it's Prime Day. They're also starting to drip out Prime Day deals. Now what this means is customers are going to stop their normal purchase habits. If I buy Tide Pods once a month on a Thursday, I'm probably going to hold off on buying my Tide Pods until Prime Day. If I have back to school items that I want to purchase, I'm going to hold off on buying those until Prime Day. Now the problem is customers are still shopping, they're still opening the app and they're clicking around, but they're not always purchasing. This is important to call out because the two weeks leading up to Prime Day and really the week before leading up to Prime Day, you're almost always going to see a drop-in conversion rate. Customers are still shopping, they're on the platform, they are clicking, they're adding to cart and they're building their list, but they're not checking out until Prime Day. So that's really important to consider.   Destaney: The second part to consider is think about Black Friday, Cyber Monday. Everybody knows what time of year Black Friday, Cyber Monday, is and everyone builds their baskets beforehand. You know they get the magazines for Walmart and for Target. They circle all of the items they want to buy. The difference is those items are holiday specific. The consumer habits are still similar, but the items are different. Prime day is smack dab in the middle of summer. People aren't necessarily buying their Christmas gifts yet. They're buying all kinds of gifts and they don't necessarily have specific items going into it. I, for example, will hop onto the Lightning Dill app and get caught up in all the excitement and the craze and just scroll until I find products that I want. So naturally, due to the flooding of customers on the platform, everyone is getting increased visibility. I think that's the biggest thing to consider. So, whether you have deals or whether you don't have deals, you're probably still going to see an increased visibility, but Prime Day is synonymous with savings. So, if you don't have a deal and you don't have a badge, you may not get that visibility.   Destaney: Now another small screenshot I added here is from one of our accounts. Last year we had 101 campaigns almost out of budget. This is not due to Amazon trying to spend more money on Prime Day. This is just due to the nature of how the auction works. When you have five times, 10 times as many customers on the platform clicking around, your ads are going to get clicked more, and the more clicks you get, the more you spend. So, the more your budget's going to be spent. This is why the first level of optimization is almost to increase your budgets, because we know there's going to be so many more customers on the platform. They're going to be clicking so much more because they're shopping around. So, increase your budgets and we're going to dive into that optimization later.   Destaney: But I thought it was really important to set that context and understanding just how many customers are on the platform during Prime Day and how that trickles down to your brand, whether or not you participate. Now there's kind of three important things to consider. You have lead-in Prime Day, lead-out, Prime Day either or. And why this matters is because the week before Prime Day is historically some of the worst performance you will ever see when it comes to Amazon advertising on the platform. Why? Well, as we mentioned, customers are still shopping. They may not be purchasing, but they are window shopping. Lead in period is really important because, again, people are logging onto a platform and they're starting to add to cart. They're starting to build their list for the products that they may want to purchase. This is important to understand because you can make your optimizations as early as 10 days prior or 14 days prior, and you need to optimize towards what you're wanting your outcome to be. So, if your only goal is profitability, then you should probably lower your budgets the week before. On the flip side, if your goal is maximizing sales and understanding consumer habits, you'll start to realize that those customers are adding to cart and clicking, so you probably still want to continue to run ads there, even though they're not purchasing.   Destaney: Yet we all know that attribution is extended on Amazon. The majority of the time, it's a 14-day attribution, sometimes longer. What's happening here is the customers are going to add to cart and click on your ads, but they may not purchase until later. So, your clicks and your spend are going to be much higher and your sales are going to be much lower. At its simplest, conversion rate is going to be down because people are clicking and not buying, and a cost is going to be up. People are clicking and not buying, so some people will just say you know, it's fine, let's continue running my ads full speed ahead, knowing it's going to pay off later. That's typically what we recommend our brands do, but some people who are only focused on profitability that is it. They don't necessarily care about the Prime Day customer because they know they're too price conscious. They're going to lower their bids and budgets the seven to 10 days before Prime Day because they don't want to attract the customer who's not going to convert until later on. So, keep that in mind. The second thing to keep in mind is that there is a lead out period, which pretty much means that a lot of shoppers are going to continue to stay on the platform after Prime Day. As we know, Prime Day has now been extended to almost Prime Week and when you have Walmart and Target and every other major retailer running these discounted days and deals, you're going to see a much longer timeframe. So, we've actually seen the week after Prime Day have some of the highest conversion rates because shoppers are still ready to buy, but some of the lower CPCs because most advertisers actually pull back on their budgets after Prime Day. So, lead-out's another really big opportunity for brands. So, keep these things in mind as you're building out your strategy.   Destaney: Here's just some kind of quick insights that I pulled from our personal accounts. As you can see the timeframe here impressions are definitely relatively high before Prime Day. Prime Day one last year was insane. It was one of the craziest days I've ever managed. Truly Before 9am we had blown through most of our budgets because there were that many people on the platform, I honestly kind of put the brakes on quite a few of our brands because I was worried that it was an attribution issue. But at the end of the day our conversion rate was about 2x 3x what it was on normal days during the beginning of Prime Day morning. You can also see the day after Prime Day there's definitely a drop off. This is influenced by the majority of our brands run deals, but impressions still stayed relatively high or back to average kind of a week afterwards, spend is the same thing.   Destaney: So again, our brands we recommend continuing to spend at a higher-than-average pace leading up to prime day, because we understand customers are window shopping, so we want to go ahead and catch their eyeballs before the day even hits. We want to stand out, so we personally increase our spend for the majority of our brands. Now, again, if a brand comes to us and says, hey, my only goal is a cost, my only goal is profit, then we're going to pull back on spend the week prior. But that is a decision that needs to be made at the brand level, not the agency or software level. So, knowing all of this, I think, before we dive into some really specific strategies around how you manage your ads, from an ad type, from a bid, from a budget perspective, you really need to decide is your goal on Prime Day to maximize profit? Is that your only focus, yes or no? The second thing is do you want to maximize sales? Now, a lot of people argue of you know a Prime Day audience isn't the best, it's, you know cheaper, it's discounted audience. They're not actually looking for your product, they just want a discount and save money. But at the end of the day.   Destaney: We've seen some two really strong effects from Prime Day. One, when ran appropriately, in an incredibly targeted way, you can take advantage of the heightened conversion rate on Prime Day and 100% improve your BSR and your organic rank on the page. We have run multiple tests with that. The second question I always get well, does your organic rank stick? Yes, if it's ran strategically in a very precise way. So, for us, we do like to maximize our presence on Prime Day because we know it's an opportunity to improve our presence on page one and improve our organic rank because our conversion rate is higher than our competitors. That's something really important to remember.   Destaney: The second part to remember is, as we saw earlier, around 40% of households are participating, so think of all of the new eyeballs you can get in front of. So, anyone who has a product that's purchased more than once whether it's a supplement that's repeat purchased, or whether it's a brand that has multiple products, like fitness gear Prime Day is a huge opportunity to get in front of a very warm audience that's ready to buy. So sometimes you can bring them into your brand and then they'll come back post Prime Day to purchase your other products. So those are things to consider when you're deciding. You know, is your goal to maximize product profit and just take advantage of the wave of traffic and do nothing, or do you want to maximize sales and build on all these other opportunities and make sure that you're investing in a much longer-term strategy than just Prime Day? Once you know those two, you can start optimizing beyond that. So, for all of those here that their main goal is maximizing profit, there's kind of a few things that we want to look at here.   Destaney: One bid management. We don't recommend making aggressive changes to your bids. In general, we see that brands who do not run any deals and are only focused on profitability will maintain around the same ACOS or ROAS. Sometimes it improves if they're in a category that does well during Prime Day. Sometimes it's worse because they didn't run any discounts and all their competitors did so. Now their conversion rates decreased. The traffic's going to your competitors and not you. If you're not running any deals, we do typically see a lower conversion rate. So, we sometimes recommend going ahead and lowering your bids a little bit, maybe 5% to 10% across the board, because customers are going to continue to click but not purchase, and again, this is because maybe your competitors are running heavy discounts and deals. If your competitors are running heavy discounts and deals and someone types in toothpaste and you're the only one not running a deal, you're not going to drive sales and you're going to have a lower conversion rate than everyone else. So, keep these things in mind. Lead-in is another strategy where maybe you need to lower your bids and budgets because your ads are not going to perform well leading up. Right, you can't sacrifice the increase in ACOS leading up because you're not going to drive sales on Prime Day without deals or discounts.   Destaney: Budget management's another really big one. At the end of the day, if you don't run deals or discounts and your category is known for deals and discounts, you're going to perform worse. So maybe it's worth decreasing your budget on everything that is not in line with your performance expectations. So the two easiest ways to do this are just go into Ad Console or Campaign Manager or, if you're using Adtomic, you can easily make adjustments throughout there and look at your targeting tab in Ad Console or the search term tab in Adtomic, which is the better tab to look at, and you can filter by everything that has an ACOS that is not in line with your expectations the last 30 days and go ahead and decrease that bid, knowing it's probably going to perform even worse on Prime Day, right, and it's not always a drastic difference, but it's usually enough to make a difference. Same thing with your budgets. Maybe you leave your budgets or you decrease your budget slightly on everything that has over 100% ACOS, right, Everything that's just out of line.   Destaney: Go ahead and decrease, and what's going to happen is you're going to optimize towards a little bit more profitability. You're going to get a lot more customers viewing your listing. Naturally, usually you know anywhere from 10% to 20% if you don't run deals or discounts. So, you're still going to drive more sales, but you're going to do it without advertising a ton. So, you're going to usually have a much higher profit on these days if you run this style of strategy. Again, the downside to this is, if all of your competitors are running deals and discounts, their conversion rate is going to be higher. They're going to drive three to four times the amount of sales as you and, as we know, the digital shelf is not unlimited. So, if they're doing much, much better and their organic ranks pushing up, yours is going to be pushing down on the page and that can be hard to make up for unless you're doing a ton externally or have other plans right outside of Prime Day. So, keep those things in mind.   Destaney: Now the second half of the strategy maximizing sales is where we're going to have a lot more very specific strategic recommendation. If you're not running deals, you can still expect a lower conversion rate, but across the board, what you really want to look at is increasing budget. That's the first and foremost way to maximize sales. Everything, all of your campaigns that have a ROAS or ACOS within your target, go ahead and increase your budget 20 to 30% and what's going to happen is, again, your organic sales are going to increase. So, if you're also increasing your ad sales and your ad spend with an increased budget, your tacos is typically going to stay close to the same, but you're seeing an overall sales increase. So, your overall profit's going to increase just due to economies of scale. So that's kind of the first thing that we look at is making sure everything converting really well, everything within a cost of a row, as we're increasing our budget on. The next thing we do is increase bids that are in a similar situation, but we're a little bit more strategic on this. Again, I'll open up my search term tab and I'll say, hey, my average conversion rate for my account is 12%, but these five keywords that are my most important keywords they're converting at a 20%. Let's go ahead and increase my bids on those, because I want to drive as much traffic as possible to those precise keywords that are going to improve my organic rank as well as improve my overall performance if my conversion rates higher. The next thing we're going to do is we're going to be very strategic with our campaign creation, and that's what we're going to get into in our next few slides. We're going to create campaigns that are specifically focused on maximizing visibility.   Destaney: A really quick pro tip and I'm only calling this out is because Prime Day traffic comes in waves. We typically see the morning of the first day of Prime Day as one of the highest. You can use Atomic Day Parting Schedules. So, if you're nervous to go in and just increase bids and budgets 24 hours because you don't know what performance is going to look like, you can use Adtomic Day Parting Schedules to choose those certain time frames where you can actually see your conversion rates higher and your CPCs are lower. So, we all know that your conversion rate does fluctuate throughout the day. You can use something like the day parting schedules to build out rules throughout the day if you want to balance that line of profitability and sales. So, keep that in mind, All right.   Destaney: So, leveraging the search term tab this is a really quick screenshot pulled directly from Atomic that I wanted to shout out because it's one of the best ways to have a lot of control. So, a lot of people will go to every single campaign and add a crazy placement modifier, increase sales or top of search by 100%, increase budgets. But that's not very strategic because you're going to have some search terms that don't do well, some that do well. So, if you pull Adtomic, you can leverage the search term tab. If you're an ad console, it's the targeting tab and you can filter top down by spend. I'm a really big believer of operational efficiency and 80-20. So, I almost always go top down by spend efficiency and 80-20. So, I almost always go top down by spend.   Destaney: What I am personally looking for are the terms where my conversion rate and click-through rate that's another good metric to look at is higher than average. So, as you know, we can pull our category average from insights and planning tab. More on that probably later when we hop into Q&A. But you can also pull it from your account average. So maybe your account average again is 8%. So, what I'm really looking for here are there any terms that have insane conversion rate that I know is better than the category? If so, you can assume that during Prime Day it's going to perform even better. So, I'm going to go control my bid and increase my bid on all of those terms, especially if my ACOS is lower than what my target is. This specific account does have a 30% average ACOS, as you can see here. That is our target. So, I'm probably going to increase performance on these terms. But if I see a term that's performing less than our average maybe it this 3% and 8% and it's not a strategy that the brand wants to run, I'm going to pull back my bids, right, Unless I'm running a dealer discount. This is a way that really helps improve your total sales and your organic rank while still maintaining some of that level of profitability. What you don't want to do is spend a ton of money on a term that has a terrible conversion rate. All that's going to do is hurt your organic rank because Amazon wants the products that are converting the best at the top of the page. So, keep that in mind when you're running your bid magic and be a little bit more strategic around these increases and decreases during Prime Day.   Destaney: The second thing we want to do is if we're running deals or discounts, this is even more so. We want to create a couple of campaigns focused on winning top of search. Now, Bradley and I have talked quite a bit about this area and whether or not to use high bids or whether or not to use placement modifiers, but for Prime Day specifically, especially if we have a deal badge on our ad, we create campaigns for the top of the page. The reason being is, as we know, customers are looking for deal badging and the best place to see that deal badging is the number one slot on the page. Now, most people can't afford to win this 100% of the time. It's just incredibly expensive. In the supplement space it would cost you around $90,000 in spend to win one keyword over 80% impression share $90,000. And this was last year. So, this is why we create separate campaigns is because we don't want to compete with all of our other campaigns that are focused on profitability.   Destaney: We create one to two campaigns for one to two top keywords that convert better than anything. Profitability we create one to two campaigns for one to two top keywords that convert better than anything else and our one to two keywords that we want to improve our organic rank on and we're going to set insanely high bids and probably put also a top of search modifier on it. And when I say insanely high bids, people always think it's three to four dollars. No, that is not going to compete during Prime Day, especially not in a competitive market. For some of our campaigns where we only want to win top of search, we don't care what the return on ad spend is during that timeframe, because people repeat purchase or because we have a good deal. I'm talking $10 to $15 bids or in the supplement space it's $40 to $50 bids. That is the kind of bid that is often needed in competitive categories on Amazon. And again, why we do this is because our conversion rate is so much higher with our deal. We drive so much traffic because of our deal badging that our organic performance will improve and stick for the next four to six to eight weeks. And if we continue to maintain that high and heightened level of traffic, organic rank will stick the whole time.   Destaney: So, we don't do this with all of our campaigns. We don't do this with every keyword. We cannot afford it, we would hemorrhage money. But we create one to two campaigns with one to two keywords and we set a budget that we can control in order to piggyback off of that conversion rate and those sales. So, think very strategically around this what keywords in your account are you converting better than everyone else? What keywords can you afford to win top of search on and create some of these campaigns so that way you can start improving your organic positioning on the page through PPC during Prime Day. Another quick thing to note is when you create your campaign, put top of search, put Prime Day in the campaign name or whatever you need to see, so that way when you see a poor ACOS or poor ROAS you don't pause it, because that's not the objective of the campaign. The campaign is to improve your BSR and to improve your organic positioning, not to drive profitability. So that's kind of a really quick tip and we'll probably talk more on that in the Q&A section.   Destaney: The next thing that's incredibly important is to consider how many people window shop on Prime Day. So more frequently than probably any other time of the year, customers are clicking around sponsored display almost always does really well during prime day because this positioning on the page is really valuable. So, what we do is we create really specific sponsored display product targeting ads where we only target all of our own products and we run these with the increased budget on prime day. And we run these with an increased budget on Prime Day because we know that customers are less loyal. Now it can be argued how much brand defense campaigns you should run throughout the year and I have some good data to kind of back into those areas but during Prime Day I'm of the opinion that customers are less brand loyal. They're looking for deals, they're looking for discounts. So, make sure to protect your listing, especially if you have a deal. If you have a deal, the last thing you want them to do is land on your page, see a better competitor ad and click out. So, we increase and run specific prime day targeting strategies for sponsored display. Don't throw in hundreds of products to target. Don't put expanded product targeting. Only target your own brand name to make sure you are defending your listing. Other sponsored display strategies we can talk about later whether or not it's audience targeting, category targeting or retargeting, but this is something that needs to be ran in almost every single account.   Destaney: Profitability or scalability focused. Maximizing your creatives is another big one. So almost all headline search ads are being forced to move to a custom image regardless, but even more so on Prime Day. It's needed to maximize your creatives because you need to stand out on the page, and when there are hundreds of deals, hundreds of discounts, you need to stand out on the page, and when there are hundreds of deals, hundreds of discounts, you have to stand out by how you've built your brand. So, look at the differences in these two ads. They're both selling the same product, but one of them is way more eye-catching. The bottom one also will typically drive a 200% increase in click-through rate, which is incredibly, incredibly important, because as you're running these ads, everyone's running deals right. Almost everyone in your category is gonna run some level of dealer discount, so if you're not, you have to stand out.   Destaney: Adding a lifestyle image is one of the number one way to improve the performance of your sponsor brand ad and your sponsor display ads. So go in there and get that done If you don't have the creative to make this happen, use Sponsored Brands AI Builder. Is it fantastic? No, not always. I said no really aggressively, but we actually have used it for a lot of brands. It's not always as fantastic as a professional shoot, but is it better than nothing? Yes, because even if it's a poor AI creative, you're not getting charged. A list of customer clicks. Sponsored brands ads are pay per click most of the time, right. So, get it up and running to bring eyeballs to your listing and then, if the customer is still interested, they will click on. So that is kind of the biggest thing that we recommend from a sponsored brand sponsored display ad perspective. Immediately get your lifestyle images uploaded.   Destaney: The other thing we're going to discuss is creating remarketing campaigns. So, one thing that you have to consider is, again, 40% of households are on the platform. This is your opportunity to get your brand in front of hundreds of hundreds of thousands of customers. Now, some of them may not purchase. Some of them may look but not buy, as we know. So how do you take advantage of that traffic? The 30, 45, 60, 90 days after prime day, you create remarketing campaigns. You can create remarketing campaigns directly with an ad console with sponsored display. As you can see, there's a target added section here. Remove all of those targets. Amazon auto-populates some of them. Remove them. All you want to do is create a remarketing campaign within the look back window that you would prefer. Why this is so important is because if a customer was looking at your product during Prime Day, they are interested in it probably throughout the year, right? So, you're able to capture that customer ID and then serve them an ad 45 days later when maybe they're ready to repeat, purchase or buy a new one, right? This is a really valuable way to take advantage of all the traffic you're getting on Prime Day and monetize it later on throughout the year. If you run this same campaign within DSP, you can also get even more targeted. Within DSP, you can say hey, I want to go ahead and serve everyone an ad. Who viewed my page on Prime Day but did not purchase. Or who viewed my competitors but did not purchase, right? If I'm selling TVs, you don't want to continue serving someone an ad. If they already bought a TV, they probably don't need another one, maybe.   Destaney: So, within DSP, you can set up and create that audience where you own that customer ID that viewed within your category and you can get really targeted of negating and or highlighting certain audiences. So, this is incredibly, incredibly important. If you're not a fan of DSP or if you have any concerns red flags you think it's terrible drop those concerns in the chat because I can answer them. Around. 90% of the time, DSP does not work because it's not ran appropriately or expectations weren't set or it was spent too much money without highlighting how granular you can get and, if that's the case, run sponsored display ads to dip your toes in and play around with getting really granular with your remarketing audience to take advantage of Prime Day traffic. Those are all the biggest things that we had here, so I wanted to leave it at that and then hopefully answer some of the follow-ups we had.   Bradley Sutton: That was good. The main takeaway guys. I mean, there's tons of takeaways you guys should have, but I hope one of the main takeaways that maybe opened some of your eyes is that when we're talking Prime Day, PPC readiness, it's not just July 16 and 17 that you have to keep in mind. There's stuff you have to do before Prime Day PPC readiness. It's not just July 16 and 17 that you have to keep in mind. There's stuff you have to do before Prime Day. There are things that you have to keep in mind, like this last slide about after Prime Day. Prime Day has a big impact and it's outside of just two days, so just keep that in mind. If there's one takeaway, make sure you remember them. One question of somebody made about 10 minutes or so ago not necessarily about prime day, but it's especially important because of prime day coming up is she's been sold out a month and I've actually talked to some sellers like this. They're worried. Like prime day is coming back. Um, how do I regain my momentum? As far as you with PPC to make sure I'm okay for Prime Day, so what would you say to Paula?   Destaney: Well, I think Prime Day is actually a fantastic time to launch if you can find out or carried away to stand out on the page. The biggest thing I would say is you almost need to restart your honeymoon period. I know this is more Bradley's area of expertise, but a lot of people will go out of stock and then come back into stock and expect to have the same BSR, same positioning on the page, same traffic as they did prior. That's almost never the case. From what we've seen, we see a huge drop in just organic positioning. So, the biggest thing is like setting expectations and making sure you're preparing your budget. When you come back into stocks, you're probably going to have to spend more money up front to make up for the sales volume that you did receive organically. Now, with it being Prime Day, I almost recommend at least having a coupon or something on your page to improve your conversion rate relative to your competitors and then just spending maybe a little bit heavier up front, knowing you're going to make up for that once your organic position goes back to normal.   Bradley Sutton: All right, what else we have here? We've got, Gianna from. She says if I've paused keywords in the past, I've not performed well. Is it worth reactivating them with low bids during prime to generate visibility and perhaps sales, or is it better to leave them paused? Oh, that's a nice and juicy one right there.   Destaney: I wouldn't say that they're gonna perform that much better on prime day, unless maybe you're a lot cheaper and you have a good you know deal badge or something along those lines. I would say why did you pause them instead of lowering your bids? Right, if they're absolutely converting terribly and you've got 50 clicks and no orders like, okay, that makes sense, pause it. But if they've driven any sales in the past, maybe you do start them with a really low bid just to see what can happen. But this is again drawing. If you're only focused on profitability, probably not. It's probably not conformed that much better out of the blue. But if you are focused on maximizing sales, maybe it is worth looking at. You know, last 90 days what keywords have driven an order, even if not profitably, and what should my bid be, knowing my conversion rate may be higher.   Bradley Sutton: One quick question I have for you before I go back is I think one of the things differently this year is Amazon's new rules on like sale prices and coupons and things like that, where, hey, you've got to be lower, you can't just artificially raise your price and then. And then you know, like some people do, and then people see, oh my goodness, it's 60% off, but it's just because they raised the price by 60%. Now, that being said, obviously there's going to be some people who still game the system, maybe from variation, abuse or some black hat stuff. But one thing that I've found now is, you know, like me personally, what I would do in the past is I would still have some kind of sales discount before prime day a little bit, just to get some momentum going and maybe increase on my organic. But now I'm all of a sudden, I’m trigger shy because I'm like, oh shoot, whatever discount I do now, that's setting my, my baseline price for this month, which means I'm going to have to do it even bigger. Uh, you know discounts, even getting a coupon approved. So, has that new rule changed any of your strategy at all? Or? Um, are you doing less pre? Uh, prime day discounts um, or what's your strategy there?   Destaney: Yeah, I would say, less pre-prime day discounts and or just being a lot more thoughtful around our overall pricing strategy. Because I think, like that's always, like the biggest complaint I see with Prime Day is some brands like, no, don't do anything, don't make any changes, it's not valuable. Everyone's looking for discounts and it's like, yeah, that is true, but also, as we discussed, you're getting in front of 40% of households in America. So, I think, just being a lot more strategic around the timing, also realizing that if you overlap high spend and PPC and steep discounts, you're not going to be making any money, so you better hope you make up for it with inflated conversion rate and improved organic rank. Another big factor I think is, as we're starting to see more with Walmart and other retailers and external influencers, is just price matching as well. It's making sure that you have price parity across all of your platforms and your discounts are lining up in a similar fashion.   Bradley Sutton: That's actually important, because last year Walmart Plus Week was the same week as Prime Day, but then this year Walmart has two of them and they're both not on Prime Day. One was already last month and one, I think, is this week or next week or something. So, yeah, definitely what Destaney just said Keep in mind, guys, because if you could lose the buy box on one or other marketplace, if you're running discounts on one but not the other, Sydney says, alright, during Prime Day she's going to have a deal badge. But she's asking would you run an ad on a keyword that you already have your product organically ranked on the first page, or would you target keywords based on the conversion rate, regardless of organic ranking?   Destaney: Great question. So, the line that I usually draw on my sand is if I'm ranked in the top four, then I'll pull back on PPC. That's kind of the line. Page one does not matter. In my opinion. 80% of click share goes to the number one carousel on the page, the top four, that's 80% of clicks go there. So even if you're ranked on page one but you're at the bottom of the page, you're not getting near as much visibility and you can be booted really quick. So, we typically say, hey, if we're in the top four, that's a great place to be. If I'm five through eight, sometimes that's okay as well. It really depends on the category. But you got to think as a customer. If you're shopping on mobile, you see a headline search ad, you see three sponsored product ads and then you see your four organically ranked, and then you have another sponsored ad carousel. So, a customer has to scroll quite a bit just to get to 10 to 50. So that's kind of the area that we see. Cannibalization starts happening when you're ranked in the top four and you're advertising in the top four. Other than that, you really don't need to worry about it too much. Maybe you lower your bids a little bit and you focus on that mid-point in the page. But yeah, good question.   Bradley Sutton: Johnny says sponsor display as CPC or VCPM for protecting your own listings.   Destaney: For protecting my own listings, I do recommend a CPC model. VCPM gets a little murky when it comes to attribution because it's quite a bit different, so I like just controlling my CPCs and only targeting the specific ASINs I want to target.   Bradley Sutton: Danica says in order to maximize the sales, what percentage uplift or down of the PPC spend will you do in two weeks ahead of Prime Day, a week ahead on Prime Day, after the Prime Day?   Destaney: Good question Really depends on ROAS and overall budget. If we're being honest, we have some brands that will do a 15% increase in spend for lead-in. So, we'll segment our campaigns that we want to increase. We know that performance is going to be terrible. We'll invest in DSP. We'll do a lot on the awareness side 15% to 20% heavy. Some brands that have a specific marketing budget will go even higher. But if it's like a traditional brand that's focused on tacos, ACOS, then we'll only increase 5% to 10% for lead-in. And then on Prime Day, again it really depends on budget because you can maximize your spend if you want to, but you got to make sure you're hitting sales targets. You spend if you want to, but you got to make sure you're hitting sales targets. Lead out, as mentioned, was stronger last year than we've ever seen it before. So, I believe our lift for lead out was around 12% the two weeks after.   Bradley Sutton: Another good one here from Dion. He's, or she, is still in launch phase, so it's only been a little over a month since they created their listing, so he's not profitable. He's still trying to get that traction. Should he or she stay away from doing you know, prime Day activities and just keep going with his launch, or what is your suggestion there?   Destaney: Honestly, as mentioned, I've seen multiple brands launch products on Prime Day and have an amazing head start because their traffic is so much better, even from a review positioning standpoint. If you can get 50 people to buy your product on Prime Day and 5% of them leave reviews, that's a really, really good start. If you don't have the money for it, then, yeah, probably stay away. But if you have enough reviews even in your launch phase to have a decent conversion rate, then it's a really big opportunity to get in front of a lot of customers. That's going to drive sales volume and increase your review count.   Bradley Sutton: All right. Last question of the day is any specific strategies for advertising listings with lightning deals.   Destaney: Nothing too specific. You can create specific sponsor brand ads and shout out the deals in your headline. You can also. Usually what we've seen historically they change this frequently is if you run additional auto campaigns not necessarily additional, but if you have auto campaigns on the ASINs with lightning deals, they typically do win unique inventory on the page, whether it's frequently bought together, the lightning deals page on Amazon or other segments of like sponsored deals. So just make sure you have the maximum exposure we discussed   Bradley Sutton: Okay, so now, what homework do you have for everybody from now until next week? Again, like I said, guys, this is like the third, fourth, fifth thing in a row that we've been doing about prime days. We want to make sure you guys have the best prime day. What do you want people to do from now until next week? Uh, and then report back to you on when you come on.   Destaney: I would say the biggest things are we released a prime day checklist which covers things outside of amazon advertising as well, so I would 100% check that out. The second thing I would do is really define is it that profitability or that scalability strategy? What are you trying to accomplish? And then go through the deck that I shared today I'm sure we'll send it out and just look for any of those low hanging fruit opportunities. Do you have your brand defense campaigns covered? Do you have your bids and budgets ready for lead-in, which starts really soon? Do you have the appropriate creative assets, custom imagery, video, lifestyle images, all of that? Do you have it ready to go? And then I think the reason we actually wanted to do a follow-up campaign is because a lot of the items that I mentioned are hands-on keyboard. You need to log in and make these adjustments. You need to look at your search terms tab in Atomic. So, we wanted to put a follow-up of like hey, here's everything we think you should do. Once you've identified what you want to accomplish, let's actually hop on and do a Q&A for everyone who maybe tries to launch a sponsored display ad and gets confused. You know, sponsored display is now overly complex. You have reach and sales and audiences, so we really wanted to give everyone the opportunity to then come in hot and ask questions. For hey, I tried to do this. It doesn't work, or this is what I'm seeing, this is what I'm not.   Bradley Sutton: Okay, all right. So, guys, I don't have the signup sheet yet for next week's live, but just if you're watching this on YouTube, make sure to hit the notification for when we go live and look out in your email, we'll send you a message to register for that uh workshop. You guys have got your homework uh cut out for you. I've got. I put the link that she referred to right there. There are some tips from Carrie, some tips from Destaney and others there. h10.me/primelist. h10.me/primelist. Destaney, thank you so much for coming on here and sharing your knowledge. I got to kick back for half the workshop here and chill. I just listen and learn like everybody else. So, thanks for that and we will see you back here next week. You, Destaney, and also everybody else out there as well. Thanks a lot, everybody.  
7/6/202444 minutes, 13 seconds
Episode Artwork

#575 - Amazon Prime Day Seller Roundtable

Get ready for an insightful episode as we gear up for Amazon Prime Day with strategies from some of the most experienced sellers in the business. We kick things off with Abdul, a seasoned seller who shares his journey of nearly a decade on Amazon. Listen in as Abdul recounts his best and worst Prime Day moments, including how he achieved a 2-3X sales increase last year without relying on costly promotions. Instead, Abdul utilized coupon codes, price adjustments, and leveraged off-Amazon traffic through social media and email campaigns. He also shares his game plan for this year, including starting targeted broadcasts a week before Prime Day to maximize engagement and sales. Next, we shift gears to hear from Abe Chomali who has worked with multiple sellers, including a remarkable success story of a national electronics brand. This brand skyrocketed from $15,000 to $1 million in sales in a single day thanks to a premium deal position and massive advertising push. We also explore common pitfalls, such as internal miscommunications that can sabotage deals, and discuss the latest tactics for Prime Day 2024. Key strategies include leveraging new promotion types and recapturing potential sales from ad spend leading up to and during Prime Day. Finally, we share diverse seller experiences and strategies for Prime Day from Rolando Rosas, Gonzalo Zamora, Carrie Miller, and Huy Nguyen, highlighting both successes and challenges. From managing PPC budgets effectively to the potential pitfalls of overspending on ads, we cover it all. Sellers like Rolando found that turning off PPC on Prime Day didn’t negatively impact sales, saving significant costs. We also explore the use of Amazon Live for increased exposure without extra expenditure and the crucial role of Helium 10 tools in managing campaigns and tracking performance. By leveraging tools like Helium 10’s Cerebro and Market Tracker, sellers can optimize for Prime Day-specific keywords and ensure continued sales momentum. In episode 575 of the Serious Sellers Podcast, Bradley, Abdul, Abe, Gonzalo, Rolando, Carrie, and Huy discuss: 00:00 - Amazon Sellers Prime Day Strategy From Experienced Sellers 01:09 - Prime Day Strategy for New Sellers 02:54 - Improving Amazon Sales Strategies Over Time 08:15 - Maximizing Strategies for Prime Day 12:34 - New Strategies for Promotions and Sales 16:55 - Prime Day Sales Strategy Success 18:14 - Prime Day Strategies & Tools 27:19 - Successful Strategies for Prime Day Sales 35:20 - Optimizing Prime Day Sales Strategy ► Instagram: instagram.com/serioussellerspodcast ► Free Amazon Seller Chrome Extension: https://h10.me/extension ► Sign Up For Helium 10: https://h10.me/signup  (Use SSP10 To Save 10% For Life) ► Learn How To Sell on Amazon: https://h10.me/ft ► Watch The Podcasts On YouTube: youtube.com/@Helium10/videos Transcript Bradley Sutton: Prime Day is coming up, so to continue in our series of Prime Day readiness episodes, we've invited seasoned Amazon sellers who've sold millions of dollars on the platform to give some of their best and worst stories from previous Prime Days along with what they're planning to do this Prime Day. How cool is that? Pretty cool, I think. Sellers have lost thousands of dollars by not knowing that they were hijacked, perhaps on their Amazon listing, or maybe somebody changed their main image, or Amazon changed their shipping dimensions so they had to pay extra money every order. Helium 10 can actually send you a text message or email if any of these things or other critical events happen to your Amazon account. For more information, go to h10.me forward slash alerts. Bradley Sutton: Hello everybody and welcome to another episode of the Serious Sellers Podcast by Helium 10. I'm your host, Bradley Sutton, and this is the show. That's a completely BS-free, unscripted and unrehearsed organic conversation about serious strategies for serious sellers of any level in the e-commerce world. Prime day was just announced, although, of course, helium 10 serious sellers podcast listeners have been knowing when prime day was going to be since April, since we predicted it but we weren't sure. But now everybody's sure July 16 and 17 is the day, all right. Bradley Sutton: So, if you're a brand-new seller, by definition, this is going to be your first prime day, and so what I wanted to do is not just have me here give you guys a step-by-step tutorial. I wanted to bring different sellers on to ask them what their experience is, whether it's their own accounts or maybe, uh, they have a lot of clients who they've helped with their prime days, and it's funny, because the answer is not always oh, you've got to go all in the answer from some of these sellers. I'm not sure what they're going to say. Some of the sellers might say you know what I don't do extensive discounts on Prime Day, and that's fine too. We want to make sure that we give you guys a complete view of what people are doing and not doing on Prime Day, but just know that, hey, there's not just one size fits all, where there's one strategy and everybody's got to do it or else you're a failure on Prime Day. I think that's going to be, hopefully, the theme that you learn today that there's different strokes for different folks, and it's okay. So, the first seller I'm going to bring on the show with us today he's been on the podcast before is Abdul. Abdul, How's it going? Abdul: Hey, Bradley, good, good and yourself. Bradley Sutton: Pretty good, pretty good Now. You and I have hung out all over the world. You used to come to our Elite workshops and we had it in California. I know at that time you were living in New Jersey. We've also hung out in Lahore, Pakistan. Is that where you're at right now? Are you in Pakistan? Abdul: Yes, I am, and indeed. Bradley Sutton: So, what time is it over there? Abdul: So, we're like 12 hours ahead of you. It's like 11PM. Bradley Sutton: 11PM. Thank you for coming on so late. Now for people who maybe haven't heard your Serious Sellers podcast episodes. How long have you been selling on Amazon? Abdul: So, we're going up to eight, nine years, but the first few years were not so good. I did everything wrong, and just after that it's just been fixing things and it's been a roller coaster. Bradley Sutton: All right, now, eight, nine years you've been there for the prime days and so tell us let me just start off, this is going to be a similar question as what I'm going to ask others what was the best thing you've ever done on a prime day? Like, maybe it could have even been an accident, but what's the best Prime Day result you had where maybe sales were up 50%, sales were up 4X? Whatever the case, what can you remember was your best Prime Day? Abdul: I think 2X, 3X last year was good. Bradley Sutton: Was that coming from a certain strategy, like, did you run Prime exclusive discounts, a lightning deal, or was it just 100% organic extra traffic? Abdul: So, that's something we did not do last year. Last year we did not do exclusive discounts, flash sales, because I think correct me if I'm wrong those are usually 200, 300 per ASIN. They can get very pricey quickly, right, sure? So, we did not do that. Last year we did a lot of. We signed up for whatever free we could find and we ran coupon codes, discounts. We fixed our pricing beforehand to make sure that our prices were just right, leading a month, two months before the Prime Days. Bradley Sutton: Okay, so what was your strategy right before Prime Day? Did you have anything different that you did leading up to Prime Day? Abdul: No PPC ran as usual. We just kept an eye. If anything was running out of budget, we would put more juice into those PPC campaigns. Otherwise, we were just concentrating on coupon codes off Amazon advertisements. We have a large following now, so we send out messages on our social media, on our email distributions, so bringing a lot of off Amazon traffic to our store. Bradley Sutton: Okay, yeah, that's definitely good. And so, what are you doing in that regards for this year? Like, what's your plans leading up to this year's Prime Day? What kind of promotions are you doing for your off Amazon this year? Like, what's your plans leading up to this year's Prime Day? Are you what kind of promotions are you doing for your off-Amazon traffic? Are you like telling them, hey, we're going to have a Prime Day discount, or something like that? Abdul: So yeah, leading now that it's announced because people my customers don't like vague, it's going to happen in June, July. So as soon as it's announced, you start preparing for your broadcast. So roughly a week before anything you do a week before the dates, it's just prepping. You can't. People don't take that seriously. So, say, about seven to 10 days, you start, you hit them with the first message and you have a series of follow-ups A lot of many chats, if you have subscribers in many chats. A lot of emails. My social media if I have Facebook following or Instagram following you just start hitting them with what your deal is, what your products are, where to find them and to remind them. Don't go to my website, have the Amazon logo prominent. So usually, I don't like to drive people to Amazon store my Amazon products. I like them to go from social media to my own website. But this will be an exception. Bradley Sutton: Now, what are you telling them, like, what are you doing? Are you doing prime exclusive discount? Are you just going to have a clippable coupon? Are you just running a discount as a regular discount price offer? What are, what is your plans for this July 16, 17? Abdul: I think it's going to be a visible coupon code this year, clippable discounts or typical clippable coupons. People tend to forget, so if something is right in front of them for everyone to see, as soon as someone lands on my page on my product, I want them to see the discount and I want them to be able to just apply the coupon and you don't want to put any hurdles in front of them. Bradley Sutton: What's your projected sales this year? Just so people have an idea about your level. What do you think you're going to hit for overall Not for Prime Day, but for your year. We're about halfway through the year. What do you think you're going to end up at? Abdul: This year has been a challenge. I have a lot of hijackers Just before Prime Day. I would touch that. We do see a lot of activity where they're using that infamous. There's a new badge, often return badge I'm being hit with that with my best sellers, and there's every year we see that. So that's been a struggle. We have to keep an eye on that and honestly, I struggle with that every year, yeah, so it's hard to say. It's always a surprise. It's hard to put a number on what this year is going to be like. Bradley Sutton: Yeah, but what was your best year? Was it during COVID? Abdul: During COVID, yeah, we were hitting 60,000 sales, 60k a month, so that was our best time. But after that I had some family issues still dealing with sick parents, so I haven't been able to give it much time and attention like I used to. Bradley Sutton: Well, that's the beauty about Amazon. You can be at home in New Jersey pushing it. You can go home to Pakistan to take care of family and still be running your business. That's the beauty about our industry. Well, Abdul, I wish you the best of success for this year's Prime Day. Thank you for sharing your knowledge with us and yeah, we'll definitely connect after to see how it was all right. Abdul: You're welcome. Thank you, take care. Bradley Sutton: Next up, we've got Abe coming on. Your kind of a contrast with Abdul's just working with his own account, but you see many people's accounts because you work with a lot of sellers and so you've got some unique, unique viewpoints as far as selling on Prime Day and what you should do and what you shouldn't do. So, a similar question like amongst you know different accounts you've worked on previous Prime Day, is there something that was sticks out as like the best Prime Day for somebody? Like what's a cool anecdote you could provide us? Abe: Yeah. So, this anecdote is one which really stuck out by itself. It's one which is going to apply to very few sellers, but it was an eye popper. So, I work with a brand that has national distribution, so it's a recognized brand, and I work with them to sell a line of electronics like in the $200 plus price range. Now we were having trouble getting traction because in the electronics category there are lots of foreign competitors that sell the same thing for 40% less. So, the brand said we really want to make a push, we really want to see if it's possible to make Amazon pop. They were able to get a SAS core rep. They were able to work with the SAS core rep and say we want a premium deal position on prime day, something that's not in the dashboard, because there are spots that you can get that are not in the dashboard. When you have a SAS core rep, they vet you and they have to make sure that they think you can sell that amount. And that's part of the key, because they say this spot can sell $4 million for us. If you can't sell and you can't fulfill $4 million, we don't even want to talk to you. That's worth what the spot is. Abe: So, they were vetted, they were checked. They actually they couldn't even send enough inventory because Amazon could not process it. They had to share the information from their warehouses with Amazon and they accepted the information. Well, that day, prime Day, every single thing was turned all the way on. We launched 30 campaigns of every ad type, you know four different autos at different price points, high-priced ranking campaigns like every single type you've ever heard an experiment about. All launched on the same day and in 24 hours, they went from selling $15,000 a day on one on the hero skew. They sold a million dollars in one day of that skew, which is something like. Bradley Sutton: $15,000 to 1 million on that. So that means that there had to be a good number that was fulfilled by merchant too, because no way they had all that inventory in Amazon. Abe: Right yeah. three quarters of it was filled by merchant. yeah, so it can't be reproduced. A lot of people suggest very impressive things like it could be done if you flip the right switch. No, this is not. I would be surprised if I ever am part of a thing like this again. But I had the front row seat for it. Bradley Sutton: I love that. I love that. Now let's talk about the complete opposite. What was a disaster for somebody? Like somebody just did nothing, or maybe somebody screwed up on their discounts or they didn't realize it could stack, or have you ever what's the worst prime day you've ever heard of that happened to somebody? Abe: The worst prime day. It's a thing that keeps happening, but it's just as bad. Every single time it happens you have somebody who is not working with somebody else within the same company. They launch a coupon a week before. The new low price of 30 days is below the price of the submitted deal. Boom, your deal does not run. And every time it happens there's a meltdown because people count on prime day and all of a sudden it didn't work. They can't understand why. They tell me, Hey, why aren't we selling? Where's the volume? Why aren't we even showing for the deal? I said did anybody in your place run any kind of discount or coupon in the last couple of weeks? Cause we don't get a notification about everything they do in their account? And all of a sudden, you'll hear the yelling that Bob ran a coupon two weeks ago. What are we doing, Bob? He ruined everything! Bradley Sutton: Wow! Okay, so now what you know, things have changed in the last, in the last Prime Day. You know there's new rules as far as like discounts and coupons and plus there's new ways to. You know there's. I don't I don't know if brand Taylor promotions has been around for a full year yet, but I don't I'm not sure if that was around last year. Abe: They keep changing it, so yeah, and. Bradley Sutton: Yeah, and yeah, even the one. Even in itself, it's not what it was two months ago, you know. So, right. So, with that, all that in mind, we're now talking about 2024 Prime Day. What are some general things that that trying this year with some of these new changes in mind. Abe: So, the number one thing we're going to be trying is, like you mentioned, the brand tailor promotions. There's something like 10 different types of promotions in there and what we're doing with every brand we work with, we're actually setting aside an hour for time to work with them instead of our usual, you know, shorter amount of time. We say listen, we need to spend an hour to look at each one, read the terms of what each one applies to and think about if this applies to our brand and if it does, let's lean into it. And with Prime Day, a number of those discounts are for people who looked at your product but didn't buy, for people who put it in your cart but didn't buy. And we want to know. What we want to do is all of the ad spend that we spent leading up to Prime Day, all of the money that we spent on Prime Day that didn't turn into sales. We want to do anything we can to capture it in the days and 10 days or two weeks afterwards. Bradley Sutton: Prime Day already has a lot of, you know, better conversion rate than normal days because people are coming on Amazon with more intent to buy. But if you are targeting people who already had even intent to buy before, because they added to the cart but they abandoned it you know that's one of the brand cart or cart abandoners is one of the brand tailor promotions that's like should do even better for you if, like, they're already coming on Amazon and they're already somebody who almost pulled the trigger on buying your product before. So that's, I think that's a great strategy to target, to target them. Abe: Yeah, I mean these brand tailor promotions have. In some cases, they've been fantastic. They do what DSP promised to do, which is to chase people around after they originally looked at you. These promotions are doing it more effectively than DSP in a lot of cases, because it's really direct and a big thing which is key is that they gave us the ability to run these promos at an ASIN level, which was originally it was just for the brand overall and at that point it was really clumsy in terms of running deals plus stacking something that goes across your whole brand. Bradley Sutton: Are you doing anything differently in Helium 10 as far as for Prime Day, like doing some historical research or looking at search volumes, or is just kind of like saying you know keyword tracker, paying special attention, or it's kind of like business as usual for you? Abe: So, I'll tell you one of the features we love best and I'm not sure which level of Helium 10 you need for it is the historical rank tracker for keywords. In Cerebro we love to compare time periods and with the accounts that are connected long enough, we can see how Prime Day did last year and we can compare Prime Day to different peak periods and we use those to set budgets. The number one thing we do when managing Prime Day, we don't do much with bids. We don't have a special bidding program for Prime Day the number one thing is being visible to shoppers as long as possible during the day, which is budget management. And the budget management goes also along with inventory management. You have to have enough product to sell and then you have to show enough to sell all the product you have. That's where all the planning comes in and that's where all the holes fall apart. Usually, either people didn't plan enough inventory, either people didn't assess the impact of their discounts against their regular margins, and then nothing is left over to spend on an actual ad. There's all the different parts that work together. But going back to Helium 10, it gives us an idea of how much of a boost we need in order to get full coverage those days. Bradley Sutton: Thank you so much for joining us and giving us your insights and definitely want to keep us updated in the Elite Facebook group to let us know how some of these things worked out for you. Abe: Be happy too. Bradley Sutton: I'm going to invite three people on at the same time. We're just going to have kind of like a mini round table for the next few minutes and let's go ahead and invite the next group. We've got Gonzalo, we’ve got Rolando and we've got Carrie. So, we've got three experienced Amazon sellers of different of different levels, but experienced Amazon sellers of different levels, but all have multiple prime days under their belt. So, we're going to start with our two guests. Gonzalo, you've been on the Spanish podcast. I've never had you on the English podcast before, though right. Gonzalo: Right. Bradley Sutton: Okay, so give us some of your background. Where are you based and tell us how long you've been selling on Amazon. Gonzalo: I'm based in Chile in South America, in Santiago, and I have been a seller from 2019 before COVID. Bradley Sutton: Okay, so you've got about like you know, depending on if you're counting the prime deal days or the other one that comes up, you know you got at least three, four prime days under your belt. Now let's just stick with you for a second here. What was your best prime day results. Like where it was really a big increase over sales, and then if you can remember what contributed to that. Gonzalo: I have one that I X by three in one year. That was pretty amazing. Bradley Sutton: Was it by accident, or did you do something different that year that really worked? Gonzalo: Actually, it was the one that I set as basis for the next year and I replied the same strategy from them. And what I make is, on my top seller product, I actually decrease the bids and increase the budget, so I'm just waiting for the sales, basically, but just on the top seller. On the rest of the product, especially on the ones that I need to move, I do the opposite thing. I create one week before I create a retargeting campaign because it's shown that you need to be seen seven times before someone bought your product. You need to be seen seven times before someone bought your product. So, I tried to show to the same person seven times before Prime to push them to buy the product on Prime. Bradley Sutton: You got some buyer psychology going there. I like it. I like it, yeah, excellent. Gonzalo: So, for me Prime started one week before. Bradley Sutton: What was your most unsuccessful Prime Day? Where sales just stayed the same or even went down, or you made a mistake and something didn't happen. Do you remember? I remember any. Do you have any bad stories for us from Prime Day? Gonzalo: The only one is I think it was the first one that I didn't realize that I got out of budget on my campaigns. I was selling great. I get out of target. Obviously, my sales drops and I didn't realize until the next day. Bradley Sutton: All right, we'll call back to you, so stay here Next up, Rolando. Rolando was just on the podcast a few weeks ago and same question for you. We've been asking your best Prime Day and, if you can remember, what was the reason for that success? Rolando: We're one of those birds where Prime Day doesn't mean anything for us. Really, it hasn't moved the needle. Last year I would say it was probably our best, and that's because we turned off the PPC. And what we found the year before that so that'd be two years ago was, we were like, oh, let's do something for Prime Day and we'll crank up the juice with ads. We saw a lot of clicks, but we didn't move the needle any further than the previous year. It didn't move the needle further than our average daily sales. So last year we said no PPC and we didn't even see a huge drop in terms of our regular run rates or anything like that. It was right around the same, like in just another day. So, for us that's a victory in that we didn't waste thousands of dollars for people that are browsing and we just kept selling. So that was, I would say, a win for us to really see the difference one year go cranking out on PPC, one year not cranking out on PPC, and so we learned a lot by doing that. Bradley Sutton: And that's important for everybody here. Don't think that, hey, I have to do something bold and outrageous on prime day or else I'm a failure. You know like Rolando’s company has sold tens of millions of dollars on Amazon and you just heard from him. You know they've tried both and that when you're selling on Amazon for a while, you can try something one year and try something else. I myself haven't done. I don't I don't do too much on Prime Day outside of just managing my budgets and trying to, leading up to Prime Day, making sure I'm ranked organically where I want to. But that's super important to know that if you don't do anything special, that doesn't mean you're a complete failure. Rolando: You know what you could do. That doesn't cost any money and something that we are going to be doing this year. We did this three years ago and also for is that around Prime Day, we start going live. It's great because Amazon does have a lot of stuff going on their social media accounts saying come to our website. You know, check out the live. So being live. Are you talking about Amazon Live. Amazon Live. So, we'll go live those days. It'll run on our Amazon store. It'll actually replay later on the Amazon store. So, we have content. We have our faces on there. We show the product how to use it. We talk about different things. So, exposure wise, it gets people to see oh, these are the people behind the curtain that are part of this company. So, from that standpoint, we look at live as a great day to get new eyeballs without having to spend a ton of money. Bradley Sutton: Going back to Gonzalo, how does Helium 10 play a role in what your strategies are Like? What aspects are you using? You know, helium 10, obviously you're not using Helium 10 to create coupons and things like that or register for deals, because we don't have that. But on the research side, what are you doing? Or on the um or on the advertising side? Gonzalo: First of all, Helium 10 is crucial because I control my all my pay-per-click on Adtomic yeah, it's crucial for me healing time. And then I have two tools that I love. The first one is market tracker that I regularly is going to take how the sale is going and who are my competitors, and the second one is keyword tracking. Obviously, I'm watching always what is my ranking and what is, how do I doing and how it is impact the pay per click that I'm doing. Bradley Sutton: On keyword tracker, are you like putting boost on and then really checking, like your sponsored and organic, like on prime day, making sure you're not losing your sponsored rank and then, if you do, you  increase your bid? Or is that how you're using keyword tracker? Gonzalo: Yeah, that way, and I also, when I start, when I open a new campaign on a new keyword, I'm start tracking with that, with the rocket, to see if I'm doing some impact or not on that keyword. Bradley Sutton: All right, good. Rolando, what are you do? I mean prime day or Prime Day. What are your go-to Helium 10 tools? Rolando: I love, love the dashboard. I love the below the insights, where it tells you all you know, your competitor and all that Below. That is a row that's super customizable, where you can look at things with your by-product performance or by advertising. And it is for me the thing because we're really big in the last 18 months is focusing on profitability and we can go line by line, item by item. It's got everything in so you know your net profit per product and you can pick out the losers, cut them or be like we got to liquidate them or hey, we've got more margin on these, these group here. Let's add some more PPC and see what happens. And now you can work more intelligently than in the past, where maybe the PPC data was over there and the sales data was over here. This combines both of that, so you know immediately these are the losers. They got to do something on them right now. Bradley Sutton: Love it. Speaking of the dashboard, something I think a lot of people sleep on at least those with a diamond plan is add competitors to that dashboard, because it's not just about your product and then set up what we call them insights, that you can consider them alerts. But then it's especially good, like for Prime Day or around Prime Day, somebody goes out of stock, somebody’s changed their title one of the competitors. Somebody adds a coupon, starts a coupon. Somebody stops a coupon. There's little things that you can set alerts, that if you don't have Helium 10, fine, you still got to be looking for these things, but you just got to manually go to all these pages, start, you know, have somebody refresh a screen. But if you've got the diamond plan and you guys are using that dashboard that Rolando was talking about, add your competitors and look at, monitor their listings, you can't see their exact sales. Obviously, Helium 10 is not hacking people's accounts. But you'll see estimated sales and things, but you'll know when they change their image or when they change a coupon or have a sale price. So that's something important to look at. Last question we'll, we'll just stick with Rolando. Then we'll go back to Gonzalo. This year, prime day, same thing as last year. You're not going to do, anything special or are you going to do the lives or are you going to do any discounting or any off-amazon promotion? What's your strategy this year? Rolando: So, this year we're definitely going to do live. Then we're going to add something we've never done before. We've never done prime exclusive deals never. I hate giving money away if I have to, but in the, in the spirit of experimentation to see if prime exclusives work for us, we've got probably a dozen products that we will be doing some form. One of the things that we literally this morning was one of our meetings. We've found an opportunity where a multi-pack unit where we could sell 50 as well as a hundred. Nobody in our category has had anything like that and we know from what our amazon folks are telling us when we talk to them. They're telling us don't sleep on multi-packs. They keep telling us that they said that the man for multi packs is going up and up and up and up and up. So, a while back ago we tried just that not on a Prime Day. We added some more multi packs. Guess what? I'm kicking myself because we weren't doing it five years ago. So, we're gonna try some exclusives tied with some additional multi packs to see how that works with buyers that are looking for things in volume. Bradley Sutton: All right, same question for you, Gonzalo. What's the plan? What is the plan of attack this year? Gonzalo: It's the same one that I just mentioned. I just started for my main product I'm going to love it and stay calm on it and the one that I need to push a little bit. Actually, today I set the campaign with retargeting and increased bidding one week previous. Bradley Sutton: Awesome, all right, well, guys, thank you so much. Appreciate sharing your knowledge with us today. All right, Carrie, how many Prime days under your belt? Carrie: I've been selling since 2016. So, I guess eight. Bradley Sutton: Do you have? I know you've got a lot of horror stories, just in general crazy things, and I'm going to save some of those for future podcasts with you. Yeah, but do you have? Let's start on the opposite side. Do you have any horror stories that specifically are related to Prime Day? or at least just maybe a prime day that just didn't work out for you. Carrie: No, what's really cool about our sales is, over the years, they've just incrementally increased, and so every prime day has been better than the last, and so it's not been like, oh, one day we did like 200,000 in sales or something, but it's like we definitely did a substantial amount more than the year before and the year before. And so, year over year, we're increasing. Bradley Sutton: That's good. So, you never had one where you accidentally did too big of a discount or you thought you were qualified for a deal and you ended up not doing it. It's been pretty much as planned. Carrie: Yeah, for Prime Day. I mean, I have accidentally done a really big discount on a coupon where it was like something that was supposed to be $15 was like $1.99. And I was like, wow, it's selling really well. So off of prime day I've done that, you know. Bradley Sutton: But not for prime day. And then do you remember what year was your best prime day Last year? Have one that sticks out. Carrie: Last year was the biggest yeah cause every year it's gotten bigger. It was about 16,000. I remember our first one. It was like we were selling about $400 a day and I remember it went up to like a thousand dollars that day and we were like, oh my gosh, and so now we've gone quite a bit more for that day. Bradley Sutton: So, you did $16,000 on one day. Yeah, on Prime Day last year. And what would you attribute that to? Did you do something different or a special campaign just really worked out, or what happened? Carrie: We do coupons and so not only in the days leading up to Prime Day but also after, we still get a good amount of sales well over our normal average, and so I think that's a big part of it. But, yeah, we offer coupons and like the discounts, not Prime Day exclusive discounts or anything like that, we just do our normal discounts and that's how we do it and it works out really well. And you always have to make sure your listing is optimized and that you've got good product reviews, and so you know if you're, if your listing isn't optimized, you're going to want to turn off the ads on those particular products or if you have kind of bad reviews. But you're, you're heroes. You know if you do some, some discounts on there and you have it fully optimized, it's, it's definitely worth it. Bradley Sutton: Now speaking of Helium 10, we're going share her screen now and I want you to actually show, step-by-step, a couple strategies that you think are important for a seller to do leading up to Prime Days. Carrie: So, this is one of my favorite tools. I think Abe was mentioning this because I know he really likes this tool too. You can use this in a lot of different ways, but basically, you're going to do what I do is I just do a single ASIN search on a main competitor. In this situation, because I'm looking at Prime Day and I wanted to give you an example of you know some, a way to find some good Prime Day keywords. There's this, this vacuum mop that I have actually purchased and I know a lot of people have purchased this particular mop for Prime Day because it's usually a pretty good deal and so I wanted to just show you how you can find kind of Prime Day specific keywords. So, I took this ASIN and did a reverse ASIN search here, and what I love about this Cerebro tool is the show historical trend tool. Now, when you go to show historical trend, it's going to give you 24 months of data, so you can go all the way back 24 months and you can see where an ASIN was ranked organically and for their sponsored. You can also see the search volume history, and so it's really, really helpful so you can go back to the last prime day and the prime day before. It's just kind of just right there. So, what I'm going to do is I'm going to click on this July 2023, because that was when our prime day was last year, and then I'm going to go down and click apply filters, because I want to just look at this month specifically, because I'm looking for prime day specific keywords. Okay, so, um, when, when I'm in this historical trend, if I go down here, you're going to see basically all of the keywords that this particular product was ranking for organically and sponsored. You can see their actual rank here. But I want to look for you can filter this down and I usually like to look at phrases containing. So, one of the phrases I like to look at is prime and if I hit apply filters, then if I go down here, I can see all of the kind of Prime Day keywords. Carrie: Now, this particular product they're ranking. They're one of the top sellers, I know, on Prime Day, but their organic rank on these major keywords is, you know, 230. They're in the 200s. They're way behind. So, they're not even really, they hadn't even advertised on these keywords, probably because they didn't really know they existed. So now, if you can go back, you can find the historical keywords. You can create campaigns with these specific keywords in them and you can start targeting those. I mean they've only they only look targeted this one. It was a Prime Day vacuums 1100 search volume, totally missing out on 8500 in search volume. You can also see here this is actually our up-to-date information. It's showing the trending of these keywords going up, up, up. Now a lot of times you'll see these keywords and it's like you know a month before it's going to be like oh there's, you know, 200 searches or whatever. So, this gives you the information of how much they're increasing and so you can even start these campaigns, you know, a month early, two months early, to just start getting yourself, you know, ranked on those keywords. And you can also leave these campaigns going all year round, kind of as an evergreen campaign, to just make sure that you're at the top of those searches and so that they have all their Christmas gifts you know a bunch of Christmas gifts for their family in December. You can you know search phrases containing gifts or anything that really pertains to your particular product. During Prime Day you can start searching for those terms you can look at. You know some of your biggest competitors, like the biggest competitor, and you can see what kind of keywords they're. You know they're ranking for but maybe not really capitalizing on, and so this is just a really, I think, amazing tool to get historical data and utilize it for this particular Prime Day. Bradley Sutton: Awesome, awesome. Thank you for sharing that with us. I mean, you can use this what she was talking about for almost any period of the year, but obviously we're talking about Prime Day now, so that's why it's especially beneficial for you guys to use that leading up into prime days. Carrie: We have a prime day checklist that we put together that has amazing information from. We have Destiny Wishon from Better Media. She gave some PPC tips. We have Emma from Marketing by Emma, and she gave a lot of really incredible tips for optimizing your listing. These things are it's not too late to do them. So, there's a lot of stuff on this list that you could really implement. Implement now, even if you feel like you're kind of like behind in the game. These are tips also you can use year-round, because it's really good optimization. So, make sure you download that, check it out, do as much as you can before Prime Day, and it's going to help your conversion, even if you're just doing a small discount it will help your conversion. Bradley Sutton: So h10.me/primelist, h10.me/primelist. And then we will go ahead and invite we up, Huy, how's it going? Huy: Hey, how's it going, Bradley. Bradley Sutton: Pretty good, pretty good. Now what about you, we? How many prime days do you think you've experienced in your lifetime, your amazon lifetime? Huy: Since the beginning, so kind of lost count, I don't know, probably plus five years. What year did it actually start, Bradley? Bradley Sutton: I don't even remember. It was before. And then, plus, there's two prime days a year. But let's just say you have a lot of prime days under your belt. Now, something I've been asking the different guests is what was the best prime day you had where, just like, sales were way more than normal and way more than other primaries? Do you remember what year that was or what the numbers were kind of? Huy: I don't remember the year, but it was definitely before COVID One of the things that it might've been the second year that prime day had been announced, right, and this was prior to them doing it only kind of like once a year, right, cause then they switched off to doing it twice a year, probably the biggest opportunity, the biggest win that we had. It wasn't intentional, it was actually when we got mentioned on. They used to do a live stream during Prime Day, right, Amazon did a live stream. They actually mentioned one of our products and we've never sold more products in one day than on that day. So, our product got mentioned in the live stream. We started seeing sales climb up. All the units we had allocated to that promotion were sold out pretty quick, but fortunately we were watching it and we were able to go in and adjust the quantities that we wanted to put in that promotion. So that's probably one of the things is like you definitely want to be making sure that you're looking at how many units you have available in that promotion and if you have the opportunity to adjust it just based on the demand. You know that was a huge win for us, I think. On the other end, though, Bradley Bradley Sutton: Disaster, any disasters or crazy things that happen. Huy: Not necessarily the disasters, but just to kind of put a point to that other one where it's like, if you put too many quantity in there, it's kind of like a psychological game as well, right? So, when there's a lot of deals that are going on, customers are looking and then they've got that progress bar where it says, hey, how many people have claimed this deal. So, if you put in too many units up in the beginning and then you're stuck between that below 10% claim number, people are not as excited to go out and claim those deals. So, I think that finding that balance of having it over 50% claimed people looking at it and then having that FOMO where they're going to go out and jump on it. So, I think, in terms of disasters, I'm going to be a hundred percent honest, we haven't been doing a lot of prime, uh, prime day, actual deals, lightning deals, and the reason why is the past couple of yeah, past couple of times it has not been effective. You know like, yeah, it's uh cost. What does it cost? $1,000 to run a deal, even if you have it on the day. What we used to do is we used to put all of our items available and put it into the promotion and then we, when they tell us the schedule, then we cancel the ones out that weren't actually on Prime Day or kind of you know, within that range, because they were putting some of us, like you know, the week before Prime Day or just a couple days after that was already not effective. But I think that because Amazon switched to allowing everybody to provide that Prime exclusive discount you know, like not having an actual deal but just kind of marking it off and then getting that Prime Day exclusive badge that has actually probably changed the most for us. We found that to be most effective. There's no cost to do it and I think that everybody's got that strategy where there's just too much inventory of Prime Day deals out there that when Amazon expanded it out beyond just those lightning deals, everybody just started looking outside as well. Bradley Sutton: I'm happy you mentioned that because I think that people need to understand that. Once I've said it five times today is that prime day success is not contingent on, he who does the most deals or he who spends the most money in in PPC, or you have to do prime exclusive discounts or you have to do lightning deals. No, you can have success on prime day in a lot of different ways. For some people, that is what’s needed, or for some people, other people, it's doing everything like. Like Abe mentioned that crazy experience of somebody who went from $15,000 to $1 million on one product on Prime Day because they went all in on something that probably is not duplicatable. But again, there's different ways to have success on Prime Day. Again, Gonzalo, Rolando, Huy, and then Abe and Abdul, thank you, and Carrie, of course. Thank you so much for joining us and we'll see you guys’ next week. Bye-bye now.
7/2/202437 minutes, 19 seconds
Episode Artwork

#574 - K-Beauty, K-Food, and Korean E-Commerce

Join us as we bring together a group of innovative Amazon sellers from South Korea who share their unique insights and strategies in e-commerce. We introduce James Park, making his debut on an English podcast, who takes us through his fascinating journey from studying food science engineering in Korea and biology in Germany to working in the cosmetics industry. His story unfolds with a transition from traditional employment to launching his own e-commerce business, inspired by watching our other guest, Bopyo Park, on YouTube. Our conversation continues with an exploration of the Seller Kingdom community, a dedicated space for Korean Amazon sellers. We dive into current trends among Korean sellers, such as the increasing preference for sourcing K-beauty and K-food products from Korea. Additionally, we highlight the Korean e-commerce landscape, mentioning platforms like Coupang and Naver Smart Store, which offer promising opportunities for third-party sellers. We also consider the potential and challenges for foreign sellers looking to enter the Korean market, emphasizing cultural differences and pricing strategies. Finally, we explore advanced marketing strategies for Amazon sellers, focusing on optimizing PPC campaigns and enhancing product listings. We discuss the importance of auditing accounts, understanding market trends, and leveraging tools like Helium 10 for deeper insights. Unique approaches such as using search term reports and Google trends to inform listing updates are highlighted. We also introduce the Seller Kingdom Seoul Conference, an event aimed at connecting Amazon service providers with Korean sellers. The episode wraps up with a casual conversation about favorite Korean dramas and recommendations, providing a light-hearted end to a content-rich discussion.   In episode 574 of the Serious Sellers Podcast, Bradley, Bopyo, and James discuss: 00:00 - Amazon Sellers From South Korea 00:12 - Helium 10 Chrome Extension Demand Analyzer 04:41 - Career Aspirations and Education Paths 07:44 - Korean Amazon Sellers and E-Commerce Growth 13:41 - Finding Korean Amazon Seller Partners 16:54 - Innovative Marketing Strategies for Amazon Sellers 19:11 - Utilizing Trends for Business Growth 24:39 - Amazon PPC and AI Strategies for Amazon Sellers  30:13 - Korean Ramen and Silicone Manufacturing 35:54 - K-Drama Discussion with Bradley and Guests
6/29/202436 minutes, 48 seconds
Episode Artwork

#573 - Amazon Prime Day Prep Checklist

Want to crush Prime Day 2024? We reveal game-changing strategies to maximize your sales! From prepping your inventory to harnessing the power of influencers and email lists, this episode is packed with actionable strategies. Discover how to optimize your pay-per-click ads by tweaking budgets, targeting your own ASINs, and leveraging the Cerebro Historical Trend Tool to stay ahead of the competition. We'll also guide you on adding last-minute coupons, and provide a Prime Day checklist to ensure your success.  Learn how to launch new ASINs effectively, set up a brand website, and improve conversion rates through split-testing. We discuss the importance of fast delivery and the advantages of using FBA and the "Buy with Prime" button for seamless order fulfillment. You'll also get tips on building an email list for future events, and hear recommendations for resources like Bradley Sutton's Maldives Honeymoon podcasts for comprehensive product launch strategies. Tune in now to make Prime Day your biggest sales event ever! In episode 573 of the Serious Sellers Podcast, Carrie talks about: 00:00 - Prime Day 2024 Strategies and Tips 03:15 - Driving Traffic for Prime Day 09:33 - Cerebro Historical Trend Tool Overview 14:00 -  Download The Checklist Here 14:21 - Building an Email List Strategies 17:12 - Split Testing A+ Content Conversion Factors  17:40 - Launching Strategies and Fulfillment Tips 20:50 - Expanding Into Walmart From Australia ► Instagram: instagram.com/serioussellerspodcast ► Free Amazon Seller Chrome Extension: https://h10.me/extension ► Sign Up For Helium 10: https://h10.me/signup  (Use SSP10 To Save 10% For Life) ► Learn How To Sell on Amazon: https://h10.me/ft ► Watch The Podcasts On Youtube: youtube.com/@Helium10/videos Transcript Carrie Miller: Did you know that you can make Prime Day 2024 your biggest Prime Day ever by implementing a few different strategies? That's right. Today, I'm going to be talking about some incredible strategies that can help you to make Prime Day 2024 your biggest Prime Day ever. I'm also going to be doing a live AMA. So stay tuned. Bradley Sutton: How cool is that? Pretty cool, I think. Hello everybody and welcome to another episode of the Serious Sellers Podcast by Helium 10. I’m your host Bradley Sutton and this is the show that is our monthly special training with Ask Me Anything session. And today's host is going to be Carrie and she's going to be going over some Prime Day strategies for you guys like, you know, we got Prime Day coming up, but even if you catch this on the replay, guys, guess what? Prime Day is something that comes kind of like twice a year because there's like a usually special other deal day. So still pay attention to this episode, even if you're watching this or listening to it after Prime Day, she's going to give some good strategies. And then also, you guys came in and gave some pretty good questions for her after that. That we're also airing live. So don't forget to join these sessions every month. These ask me anything sessions. I highly recommend it. Usually, I'm the one on there, sometimes Carrie will be on there, sometimes Shivali will be on there, but get your questions ready for us. It could be about any episode you've had or your Amazon business, and we'll get to those questions live. Bradley Sutton: One more thing, if you want more personalized help and don't want to air out your questions in public, don't forget there's a way to have one-on-ones with the Evangelism Team myself, Carrie, Shivali. Make sure to sign up for Helium 10 Elite h10.me/elite, h10.me/elite. If you've got the Diamond Plan, it's only $99 extra per month. You'll get special trains with Kevin King. You'll get a special trains with me and Carrie, and even one-on-ones once a month you can sign up for. So make sure to do that. But without further ado, let's go ahead and get into Carrie's training. Carrie, take it away. Carrie Miller: All right, thank you all for joining, and today we're gonna talk about Prime Day, and this is our monthly training, where we allow everyone into this, and it's about Prime Day. And Prime Day is coming up, and this could potentially be your biggest day of the year, and I wanna just give you some tactics and some strategies that are gonna help you to basically make it your biggest Prime Day ever. So, before I get started though, I wanted to make sure that you all know that you can put your questions in the comments, and I'm going to do my best to answer all of your questions for Prime Day because I want to make sure that, you know, you guys are all completely prepared for this. Okay, so this is my Prime Day prep strategies. Okay, so I'm going to go through you slowly, but again, if you have any questions, make sure that you drop them into the chat because I'm going to be answering questions at the end as well. If I see something, though, that relates over in the chat box then I'll make sure to answer that as I go. Carrie Miller: But okay, so here are some to do things now. In two days, your inventory should be at the Amazon warehouses, so hopefully you all have kind of prepared extra inventory and you've sent those in to the Amazon warehouses. If not, maybe you can just still try to get them in but it's going to be a lot harder. But just wanted to remind you. That's two days from now, so hopefully that's all done. And here's just some things to kind of think about ways that you can drive more traffic and have this to be a big Prime Day. You can create a discount code within Amazon and you can actually send that to your email list. So if you do have an email list that you want to give a special Prime Day discount to encourage them to purchase your products, then this is a good way to do it to kind of help keep traffic going. It can help with some outside traffic. Another thing is I personally always do this. I actually haven't done Prime Day deals, so Prime Day deals you already had to submit those, but I always add a coupon if I don't have a Prime Day deal going on, and they do very well. So I always make sure to have some sort of discount and coupons on there, on the actual listing itself. Carrie Miller: You can also utilize influencers. If you do work with some influencers, a lot of them really like to showcase products. So if you do have connections like that, then this is a really perfect time to start utilizing influencers. Here's some strategies for your pay-per-click ads. Okay, the first thing is you're going to want to increase your ads budget for the high performing campaigns. Carrie Miller: Now, obviously, if you're not really running any deals, you're not going to really want to do this for those products. This is for products that you're running deals that you know not going to really want to do this for those products. This is for products that you're running deals that, you know, are going to have deals like coupons or a prime day deal on. You want to increase to make sure that you don't run out of budget. And another thing is you want to run Product Targeting Ads against your own ASINS for defense. So you don't want to spend all this money for the clicks to get onto your listing, for then somebody just easily click away. So whatever you can do to kind of, you know, make sure that you are kind of defending your territory with those Product Targeting Ads against your own ASINs is a really good idea. And then you're going to also want to increase your bids for high converting products and then with deals, and then decrease your bids for those that don't have any deals because people are looking for deals on this day. So you don't want to waste a lot of PPC spend for products that you don't have any deals on. So just keep that in mind for just making sure that you stay in budget for Prime Day. Carrie Miller: Another thing is you're going to want to turn on the Sponsored Display Retargeting Campaigns to capture traffic that doesn't actually convert during Prime Day because you can retarget them. You can maybe continue some of your coupons or discounts going on for a few more days and then see if you can capture those sales. And then also you can update your headline copy to, you know, mention deals or you can add different photos based on whatever it is that you want to do for Prime Day. So, you know, I think headline definitely, you know, just headlining that you, you are running a deal is a good idea for your ads. Definitely you know just headlining that you, you are running a deal is a good idea for your ads, okay, so then make sure also that your listing is retail ready. So that means like when you're running all these ads, you want to make sure that it's done so that it's gonna convert. Carrie Miller: And there's a lot of things that you can do to make sure that you do optimize your listing and the first thing is you know if your brand registered, you want to make sure you have you’re A-plus content added with a brand story. I actually did this, I think, like when it came when brand story came out, I started adding my other products in the brand story and I started noticing people buying products that they don't normally buy together and that was pretty amazing. I really think that it's a really good opportunity to make sure that you have, you know those that brand story in there so that you can get those kind of like bundle deals, I guess you could say, without actually doing a virtual bundle. So I think if you aren't doing that, then you're really missing out. So when you do your brand story, you can write, you know, a little blurb about your brand and then you can actually add your products and people can scroll to the right, or is it to the left? They basically can scroll to see the other products that are available within your brand. You can also, once you've got brand, your brand story on all your A-plus content. Then you have access, you unlock access to premium A-plus content and so you can add a comparison chart on there and the comparison chart also allows you another placement to add more products from your line as well. So you can kind of cross sell and make sure to kind of like increase your cart value. Especially, you know, on Prime Day you're spending more on ads and you're spending, you're giving discounts, so you want to kind of increase those, those cart values. Carrie Miller: Also, add virtual bundles. Now I talked before about, you know, making sure that that you're doing those Product Targeting Ads to the ASIN Targeting Ads, to make sure that you're doing those product targeting ads to the ASIN targeting ads, to make sure that you're defending your products. But adding virtual bundles can also really help defend your listing because it takes up a whole row of where advertisements could be. So this is another way to defend your listing. So if you haven't had virtual bundles, definitely put them on. Some people are always like I put a virtual bundles and they didn't really sell. Well, honestly, for this purpose, the purpose is really to take up space and make sure that you're defending your position and your whole page from competitors advertising and getting those clicks away from your actual listing. Also, you're going to want to update your images, if needed. Carrie Miller: This is one of the most incredible tools for optimizing your images. I love that you can actually go on here to this little media comparison tool. So what I did was I put in a bunch of ASINs. You can put your ASIN in there. First, we put my ASIN in here first this is our Mania's Mysterious Oddities and then we put our competitors in here and you can see a bunch of things that are going on. You can even see if they're running coupons. So this is good to kind of keep track of them. Carrie Miller: But my favorite thing is, since you're preparing, is media comparison. So you're going to be able to see where what images your competitors are doing that maybe you're not. So you can see all the images all stacked on top of each other. So maybe some of your competitors have, you know, dimensions and you're like, oh, I didn't even do a dimensions photo, or they have a cool infographic that you want to kind of do a similar one like that, or lifestyle images that you hadn't thought of. That is a great way to kind of continue to optimize your images and you can also see, you know, which listings have videos. It'll show you this one has one video, so you can see okay, my competitors aren't even, they don't even have a video, and you can put up a video. That's another thing. If you haven't added a video to your listing, this actually unlocks for Amazon influencers to be able to post up in the upper carousel actual video reviews of your product and this can really help with your sales. So if you open up this by just adding a video in, I think that can really people that are doing the influencing program can kind of find you a little bit easier and then they can place their products or their review videos on your actual listing. So it's another great way to get more videos for free, basically. Carrie Miller: So the next thing I want to go back to my presentation here. I went all the way back to the beginning here. You want to update your keywords? Okay, so I'm going to show you a little bit about our Cerebro Historical Trend Tool, and I absolutely love the Historical Trend Tool. It's one of the coolest tools that I think we've come out with. You can go back in time and you can find where any, basically, you can go back at 24 months, okay. You can find out where any ASIN was ranking in the organic and the sponsored positions. You can also see the search volume history of any keywords so it’s really, really an amazing tool to, basically, you know, get ahead of the competition. So I'm going to go ahead and I'm going to show you that tool. Okay, so I already I already went into Cerebro and I actually took a product that I know sells super, super well on Prime Day and I put in the ace in here. Carrie Miller: And this is just a single search. When you're doing the Historical Trend, and what you're going to do is you're going to click on the show Historical Trend Tool and I think this is kind of hidden some people don't know where it is. It's literally right in the middle here and you click on this. You click on show historical trend. Last year, Prime Day was July, I believe, of 2023. So I'm gonna click on this July of 2023. You can see that it's highlighted here. So we're gonna click on July 2023 and then I'm gonna click apply filters and this is going to give me all of the keywords that this particular product was ranking for and sponsored and organic positioning. So one thing you could do is you could say, hey, I want to, like, I want to see where they were ranked between you know, in the sponsored position, between one and 20. And you can apply those filters, you can see where their, you know, main targets were for their sponsored ads, so you can kind of get some new keywords that way. Another thing is, once you're in here you can also kind of sort and filter for particular keywords and one of the ones I like to do for Prime Day is just prime. Okay, so I'm just going to see what keyword phrases have prime in it and I'm going to go down here and look okay, so this is kind of incredible because this vacuum literally I think is one of the top sellers for Prime Day and their organic rank for Prime Day vacuum is 230. Carrie Miller: So not even ranking. They're not even really Sponsored Rank. They have some Sponsored Rank, I do believe, on the Prime, Prime Day. Let's see if we can sort here. I think I saw them before on some sponsored. They have some some keywords. So they're ranking in the sponsored for Prime Day vacuums or they were cordless vacuum, Prime Day, but those are kind of, you know, smaller keywords. So this one actually is kind of incredible because Prime Day vacuum, you know, there's just a wide open opportunity to beat this particular competitor. You can usually see the top clicked and top converted keyword or products in there. So you can also kind of look, take a look at your other competitors and see what potential Prime Day keywords you have. So you can literally come up with a whole list. Maybe some people are shopping for gifts so you can see like gifts I don't know if this is really a gift item, but you could see if there'sany gifts. Okay, so you've got some gift keywords in here so you can do that for any ASIN and people are sometimes looking for gifts, you know. Even you know on Prime Day, for people start shopping early. So you can sort for gifts and see if there's any gift keywords that maybe you can target in your pay-per-click advertising. Carrie Miller: I was actually looking at some other, another historical search for our coffin shelf and there was a search that I did for May and I was like there must be something wrong with this. Witchy gifts for women had this huge spike and it went up to like from like 700 to 12,000. I went up to Bradley I was like there's got to be something wrong with this or something sort of glitch, but it's. He's like well, maybe this is for Mother's Day that people are searching which witchy gifts for women. So I thought that was kind of crazy, that like that's a crazy opportunity keyword for you know, this random month I not really random because it's Mother's Day but like I would have never thought Mother's Day would be kind of a gothic type search term. Carrie Miller: But you can, you know, look and find these types of keywords when you do these historical searches, and you can do that by filtering the different phrases. You can even just download the whole list and kind of take a look where they were ranking in the top 50 sponsored spots or the top 100 or whatever. You can look at all their sponsored rankings and you can see, okay, what keywords am I missing and that have a good search volume that maybe nobody else is really targeting. So I think it's a really, really incredible tool that if you have not started utilizing it, then it's really, really a great tool to use. I'm also going to share the. There's a link here that is for the Prime Day checklist that we actually made so you can download that and you can go through it again. There's actually some more details in there for Prime Day and we put it together. There's stuff with Helium 10 tools, there's stuff without Helium 10 tools. It really is geared towards giving you as much information as possible to help make Prime Day a really big day for you. Carrie Miller: So, all righty, I'm going to go back and I'm going to start answering questions. How do you build an email list? So this is something that takes a little bit of time and this is something that maybe you, if you want to do this for the next Prime Day or next holiday season, you can start now. But we do have a way. You can put QR codes into your products. Basically, you can create these little QR codes where people can kind of maybe register for a freebie, something or a warranty of your product or something like that, and basically that's kind of how you can start collecting email addresses in there, and that's a great way to do it. So that's one way or you can have a pop up at your website. I know you know, if you have like a Shopify site, make sure you have a pop up that goes up and then it can save a list of emails if you create that Shopify site now and I know not everyone has that but if you're selling just on Amazon, then these inserts are really the best way to do it. We do have different YouTube trainings that you can actually go and kind of search for our inserts trainings on our YouTube channel but that is a great way. We also, I think, did a freedom ticket extra episode on that. It would be in our freedom ticket 4.0. So that is another way that you can, you know, learn more about how to build an email list. But it's really, I think, a great tool. Carrie Miller: Somebody said I missed about the A-plus content and can you give me some more information? Yeah, so on the A-plus content, what I was mentioning was that you want to make sure that you add a brand story in you’re A-plus content because you can add more products on your carousel there so you can do a little blurb about your brandster, but there's a space where you can actually add products that are in your line. So I noticed that when I added a brand story, that more people were buying more of my products together when they're actually kind of different types of products, but they were kind of buying more like together. So it increased the cart order value and that was a really great thing for the brand story to help just kind of increase the cart value. But also, once you do a brand story for all of your A-plus content, then you can actually get access to the premium A-plus content and you can do a chart comparison and in there you can also add more products that you sell. So really good places to add, you know help to you know increase your cart order values, especially, like I said, you're paying more for ads. You know help to you know, increase your cart order values, especially, like I said, you're paying more for ads. You're doing some discounts. You want to kind of get some more bang for your buck. Carrie Miller: Does it make sense to adjust daytime parties short before and during Prime Day? So in terms of some people kind of stop running as many ads during the week before, but I actually don't and I've actually seen, you know, continuous sales. So I guess it really depends on your strategy. In terms of day parting, that's usually when you kind of like turn things off during certain times where you're maybe not converting as well and maybe increase it as when you are. But I think Prime Day may be different but it really is probably dependent on your product. Carrie Miller: Shivali says do you recommend split testing A-plus while we're still a few weeks out from the speculated day? Yes, there is actually a way that you can split test you’re A-plus content in Seller Central. So I would suggest, if we do have some time before, I think we have like probably four weeks so you can start split to see. It usually takes about four weeks to kind of give you some good information. So if you were to start, you know, you’re A-plus content today and get it all up, you could start doing two different versions and split testing. Carrie Miller: Helium 10 Serious Sellers Podcast and Freedom Ticket have been such a great partner in our journey best ever, awesome. I'm really glad to hear it. That's awesome. Okay, let's see here. Our ASIN has the fastest delivery of five to six days compared to others of one day. Not sure if this is affecting conversion, because we are getting tons of clicks but not converting or it has to be images and A+, so there's a lot of things that could be affecting your conversion, but definitely the speed of delivery is going to affect you. So you're going to see a lot less sales for sure in terms of that kind of a delivery. And then you also need to probably split test your images to see if there is a better image for your main image and maybe some of your copy. You can do that split testing within Seller Central. Carrie Miller: Somebody asked what are the best strategies for launching a new ASIN, I would recommend going to listen to the Maldives Honeymoon Podcasts from Bradley Sutton. Those are the podcasts where you can really learn how to launch a product that gives you tons and tons of information. When do you suggest to create a .com website for my brand on Amazon? My sister and I are about to launch our first product soon. I actually would say you could do it right away. Shopify is really cool because they have these templates. You can literally buy a website address and you can connect it to Shopify, and Shopify has templates that you can kind of click and drag and add photos. Carrie Miller: Personally, I created my own site myself. I took photos of my friends using my products and I went and just did the templates. I looked at all the templates that they had available and I purchased one that I thought was really cool and would work well for my product, and then you can also, you know, purchase stock images too if you needed to. There are places you can buy stock images for your website, but I would suggest just putting something together. You can do a very basic one there and that way you have kind of some brand recognition people looking for you. They can find you on that site. I think, you know, if you have some time to do it, you can do it right away. Bradley wants me to announce what is going on with Freedom Ticket as far as Walmart, we are actually working on our Walmart Freedom Ticket right now, so we're in the process of starting to film that and put it together, and it's going to be full of incredible Walmart content. So you're going to get everything you need to know to sell on Walmart and be successful.  Carrie Miller: Okay, can you fulfill Shopify orders via Amazon? You can use FBA to fulfill your orders. So you can. There's a little plugin that you can use to connect your FBA account to Shopify and so you can fulfill it. Just basically, you'll pay for the fulfillment fees. Another way you can do is there's a button you can get on your website. It's a little bit more challenging to get this, but it's called buy with Prime and people can literally just buy. It's really an easy click and they can just use their prime account to buy on your website. So that's another way that you can do it. I actually have that on my site and it works pretty well. I think it's also good for people you know if it's your site and they're like I don't know if I trust this site yet, but if you have one of those buy with prime buttons, they're like oh, I could just easily use my Amazon account and it's easy for them to do. And they don’t have to fill in anything. It’s a good way to go. Carrie Miller: Andy says is there any news on Walmart for  off shore entities. Actually, I have helped some Australian sellers I know you're in Australia get onto Walmart recently. What you have to have is an EIN and you have to have a business address in the US. So those are the main things that you need to have. They are expanding the country, so some countries that are not officially allowed to sell, you do need to have an EIN and a business address and they have to match. So, whatever your EIN, the business address there has to match the US business address in order to get accepted. So yeah, Andy says he knows that's my specialty. Yes, it is. Also Amazon. I mean Amazon, I've been an Amazon seller since 2016. So definitely Amazon is a specialty as well. Carrie Miller: With buy with prime, does it capture customer info to add things like an email list. They capture it too, but you can see it. You can see your customer information. That business address cannot be virtual. Some people use the 3PL, but there are some kind of like, you can pay for addresses and different companies allow you to do that. So that's another way to do that to get on to Walmart,. Carrie Miller: Someone said how should we launch a product with 50% off price offer coupons? There's a lot of different ways that you can do this. You can do a discount and then kind of gradually raise the price. But some people are saying now that you should do you know full price items. It really is kind of saying now that you should do you know full price items. It really is kind of depending on what you want to do but the discount does help you to convert more, especially if you don't have any reviews. So I would say you know, that is a good way to do. You know, to start off is to give a discount and then you can start getting those reviews coming in and you're obviously going to have to run pay-per-click advertising. You can run coupons and all of that stuff and all of that is going to be helpful for you to convert higher. Carrie Miller: If we need help from Walmart, how do we reach out to you? Is it possible to use Amazon to fulfill Walmart through Amazon? These are good questions. If you need help with Walmart, I do have a Walmart group you can tag me on Facebook. It's called Winning with Walmart, or Helium 10 Winning with Walmart. You can join that group. You can tag me with the questions there. I do go live every month in that group too and I answer questions. Carrie Miller: But you can just tag me there. But then also never fulfill Walmart orders with Amazon. They will shut you down. They're competing against each other. They do not want you to, you know, fulfill with Amazon, even if you do the MCF and it's like a plain box. Sometimes they make a mistake and it might be delivered in a Prime Box and it could be a problem. So I would suggest that you get a 3PL if you're going to do Walmart, or you can use Walmart fulfillment services. Walmart fulfillment services are, you know, pretty much the same thing as FBA.  You ship in some inventory to them and they will pick, pack and ship for you. So that is, I think, the best way to do that. Carrie Miller: Someone asked, I guess we have another one, is it wise to give away coupons to Amazon visitors for Amazon ASINs, in terms of listing a coupon on your site? Yes, I do believe that's a great thing to help with conversion. Carrie Miller: All right, everyone. Thank you all so much for joining this live about Prime Day and just ask me anything as well, and we will have this again live for everyone in a month again. Otherwise, if you're in the Serious Sellers Club, you can join every week. So thanks again, everyone, for joining and we will see you all again later. Bye everyone, bye, bye.
6/25/202424 minutes, 24 seconds
Episode Artwork

#572 - Avoiding Pitfalls In Sourcing & Importing

Join us as we explore crucial importing and inventory management strategies with Afolabi Oyerokun, a seasoned Amazon seller with over 20 years of experience. Afolabi takes us through his remarkable journey from Nigeria to the United States, where he transitioned from fashion design to computer animation before making his mark in e-commerce. Discover his insights on avoiding costly pitfalls when importing products from overseas, managing inventory effectively, and ensuring you don't run out or overstock. In this engaging episode, Afolabi shares essential tips on navigating U.S. customs seizures and maintaining effective communication with overseas factories. Learn about the common reasons for customs stopping a container and the importance of accurate documentation to avoid severe penalties. He also highlights the risks of using email for factory communications and suggests using platforms like WeChat to prevent scams. Plus, get the lowdown on labeling requirements for imported goods to ensure compliance with U.S. and Amazon regulations. Listen in as we discuss the critical role of third-party logistics (3PLs) in maintaining a diverse and efficient supply chain, despite Amazon's introduction of its AWD. Afolabi outlines the strategic advantages of using 3PLs for fulfilling orders across multiple marketplaces and offers practical tips for optimizing shipping. Additionally, we emphasize the importance of compliance with Customs and Border Protection (CBP) regulations and introduce a new tool to help track and ensure compliance with U.S. government regulations. Finally, get to know Afolabi a little better as we share contact information for his services and enjoy a light-hearted exchange about Nigerian cuisine. In episode 572 of the Serious Sellers Podcast, Bradley and Afolabi discuss: 00:00 - Importing Products From Overseas 03:54 - From Fashion to Tech  10:17 - Avoiding Customs Seizures in Online Selling  11:20 - Customs Seizure, Communication, and Mold Ownership 22:45 - Factory Confiscates Mold During Dispute 25:27 - Supply Chain Visibility and Customs Compliance 28:52 - Importance of Taking CBP Seriously 31:06 - Online Contact Information for Tariff Services3 ► Instagram: instagram.com/serioussellerspodcast ► Free Amazon Seller Chrome Extension: https://h10.me/extension ► Sign Up For Helium 10: https://h10.me/signup  (Use SSP10 To Save 10% For Life) ► Learn How To Sell on Amazon: https://h10.me/ft ► Watch The Podcasts On YouTube: youtube.com/@Helium10/videos Transcript Bradley Sutton: Today's guest has got tons of strategies to help you avoid potential pitfalls that would be extremely costly when importing products from overseas, but he's also got a wealth of experience since he started selling on Amazon over 20 years ago. How cool is that? Pretty cool, I think. Hello everybody and welcome to another episode of the Serious Sellers Podcast by Helium 10. I'm your host, Bradley Sutton, and this is the show that's completely BS-free, unscripted and unrehearsed. Organic conversation about serious strategies for serious sellers of any level in the e-commerce world. And it's funny for the first time in like 570 episodes, I was recording an episode last week and then noticed that the recording wasn't working, so we're having to start all over again. So thanks to our guests for being accommodating, but at the same time, thanks to my terrible memory, I think I already forgot most of what we had talked about already. So it's going to be still new for me, just as it is for the audience right here. So, Afolabi, welcome to the show. How's it going this morning? Thank you again for coming on for a second time.   Afolabi: I'm good. Thank you, Bradley, for having me over. Thanks a lot, I'm excited.   Bradley Sutton: Awesome! Now we were talking about where I'm from right before this call, where I'm at right now. Where are you in the United States right now?   Afolabi: I'm in Pennsylvania. I'm sitting at a 3PL here in Eastern PA.   Bradley Sutton: Ah, so this is not your home, this is like where you work, your office.   Afolabi: Correct. This is our office.   Bradley Sutton: And where were you born and raised?   Afolabi: Born in Nigeria, West Africa. I came into the US this January of 97.   Bradley Sutton: Ah, okay, now hold on. This is something new already we didn't talk about last time, because this weekend I was at a church event and I met somebody from Nigeria and maybe I'll throw a picture up of that. But I asked him I'm a foodie, so I ask him if I find a good Nigerian restaurant here, what should I order? And he said something let's see if this is what you suggest too. He said fish, pepper soup. So is that a great cuisine that I should try for Nigerian food?   Afolabi: Fish pepper soup is good, beef pepper soup is good and then you can. If you like rice, you can eat jollof rice. I love rice. It's spelled j-o-l-l-o-f. It's a traditional, uh, very nice, uh tasting rice. But I have to caution you on the fish pepper soup. If you don't like hot, spicy food, don't.   Bradley Sutton: That's no problem. All right, the rest of the audience, you guys, beware. Me, I don't have to worry about that I love hot spicy food. So that makes it even more. That makes it even more exciting for me to taste it.   Afolabi: Good.   Bradley Sutton: All right, excellent. Anyways, we're not here to uh to talk about food. Otherwise, yeah, my diet is day one today and I'm already going to lose out on that if I get too hungry here. But let's talk about, let's go back more to your origin story. So did you attend university in the United States or back in Nigeria?   Afolabi: Yes, so I had some university in Nigeria and then I transferred and came here to New York at the Fashion Institute of Technology, F.I.T. as everybody knew it, and I majored in fashion design for my first two years and then the final two years was in computer animation and interactive media. Weird right?   Bradley Sutton: Yeah, that's a big contrast. Some people say oh, what's your major? Oh, I'm majoring in business and I minor in management or something like that or maybe a language, but your double major was IT and also fashion. So how did you end up like, what was your first dabble in e-commerce and what year, and what did you do?   Afolabi: I did some little freelance work here and there, and then I came up with the shoe designs while I was doing freelance for a company in New York.   Bradley Sutton: And there's your fashion design coming in already. I like it.   Afolabi: Now, bear in mind, I did not do shoe designs, I didn't do footwear designs when I was doing fashion, but I just liked all these Nike shoes and all these really cool shoes. I was just inspired. So, I started designing my own shoes. And now, when I had a computer full of shoe designs, now the next stage is how do I make these shoes? So, I was looking all over. I couldn't find any shoe manufacturer, and then I sent inquiries out. Those were the days Alibaba was just coming up. It wasn't very popular at all. Anyway, I found some Mr. Johnson somewhere in Taiwan that replied to my email and it's like no, you have to come here. We can make your shoes, but you got to come here. I'm like okay, whatever.   Afolabi: So I went to Taiwan with the last dollar in my hands. I didn't even have money for the hotel. My host had to pay for my hotel. So I went to and they didn't know I didn't have the hotel. They were just being, you know good host. So I went to Taiwan, met with Mr. Johnston and that was the beginning of me making my shoes. And after I made the shoes, I you know my wife reached out one way or the other. She reached out to Amazon that you know Amazon was just getting out of selling books, only to start it. They just opened up the platform for.   Bradley Sutton: When was this? Early 2000s?   Afolabi: 2002.   Bradley Sutton: 2002.   Afolabi: Yes, so that was 2002. And Amazon. You know, some rep in Amazon said oh wow, we like these shoes. You want, would you like, to come on board our platform? Like, yeah, I don't have any other choice. You know how come? You know? So I, uh, I started selling those shoes there and they were doing really good until we realized that they were made too small, they were like a size smaller and uh, by the way, these are some of the things, things I shared in the model, you know, in the Freedom Ticket. For people that are listening, you know, I would say for them to go get that and listen to my full story there.   Bradley Sutton: Okay, interesting, all right, so now was that? So then Amazon kind of became your main income in the early two thousands? Or were you also selling online, or how? How did you end up, you know? Cause you're down to your last dollar when, when you got started here. So what happened?   Afolabi: So, I was selling on Amazon but it wasn’t, there was no FBA right, so we were fulfilling it by ourselves. It was so hard and I had a side gig which I was doing, you know, graphics and web for people on the side, and I went to a footwear show in New York. It’s called Fanny, F-F-A-N-Y. And I met some people and they were like “How did you make these shoes?” And I told them and they said, oh, can you make us shoes too? So I started doing consulting for other individuals that want to make their own shoes. So that's how I kept on keeping the body and soul together while I was building the brand on Amazon and when the shoes were made small, so we started getting a lot of returns, people saying, oh, I have to return this and buy a higher size. So people were returning it, they'll buy a size eight, They'll return it and buy a size nine. And it was just a nightmare and I couldn't take it. So I found a liquidator or some guy out of Florida and he bought all my inventory and that's how I ended that part to sell off all my inventory.   Bradley Sutton: So then, but now you kind of found out that, hey, I've got a thing for this, you know design, I've got a thing for importing. This is maybe something I can help out with.   Afolabi: Correct.   Bradley Sutton: And then, was that the kind of start of your consulting company?   Afolabi: Yes.   Bradley Sutton: That you've been doing ever since.   Afolabi: Yes, so that's how sourcing and logistics started for me. I started sourcing for a lot of companies providing logistical support and then somehow, in 2014, my friend you know came to me and said, hey, let's sell on Amazon. I'm like I've done that before. You know, it was too hard. He's like no, no, no, it's different now. You know they have something called FBA. I said what's that? He's like no, they'll fulfill the order for you. You just ship it to their warehouse. They'll do the pick and pack and ship them. Oh, that's easy. So we came up. He came up with some cool designs and signs and banners and school supplies. So that's how we went back into Amazon. We were selling craft vinyl, we were selling anything we could lay our hands on. It was so easy to rank, it was so easy to launch. Those were the days that viral launch was also, you know, getting started and stuff. And so we were. We were growing really fast because, you know there was there were no competition. You know people hadn't woken up to Amazon. So selling on Amazon became our main income at that time.   Bradley Sutton: OK, all right, interesting. Now you reference that you're in in Freedom Ticket. So, yes, anybody who has a Helium 10 and has a Starter plan, Platinum plan or above has full access to our full Freedom Ticket course, which is more than 20 hour course with every aspect of selling online that you would need and Afolabi 's module is under compliance and risk management. It's called mistakes to avoid when importing products. We're not going to do the whole thing today, but I want to give some highlights from here, just so that people can understand some of your expertise and you can go ahead and help people out with some things. But my first question is one of the things that you mentioned in your module was about custom seizures and how people can avoid that. So, first of all, what is a custom seizure? Sounds very dramatic. And then how can people avoid? Or, you know, nobody can 100% fully make themselves foolproof, but what are the things that people can do to make that less likely of happening?   Afolabi: Yes, correct, thanks. So custom seizure is when the US customs just flags your container or flags a container containing your product for examination because they're suspecting something. It could be randomly done, or it might be that your freight forwarder or your broker has been under their watch list and they want to start looking deeper into all the imports that this cheaper or freight forwarder has been doing. So they would stop your container for examination, so they'll bring it to a yard and they will open it up and see what's in it. Now you cannot really protect yourself from being, you know, spotted or from your container being stopped, but when it gets stopped, that's what you can protect. What happens after it gets stopped is what you can protect. You can, you know, can help yourself out. Some of the things that make customs stop a container could be you're importing from a factory that has a forced child laborer. You are importing products under the anti-dumping laws or countervailing laws, whereby it's almost like you're smuggling those products because the quota for those products is already filled out and you're still bringing in those products. They don't want you coming to flood the US market with those products. Above all, the most annoying one is the False Claims Act, which is you're not paying the right duty. You are falsifying your duty classification of your product so that you can pay the lower duty. You are bringing in a pencil and then you're lying in your. It may not be you. Actually it would be your shipper. Unknowingly to you, your shipper may be falsifying your customs form to declare a lower value, or you're declaring a lower value than the amount you ordered the product for. So these are all the things.   Afolabi: For me one time that my container was stopped and it was actually destroyed. The problem was that I had been ordering this giant industrial product for a long time and one time it was stopped at the port of Jacksonville and they looked at it. They said there was the power cable. Can you imagine the power cable that has the UL logo on it. They wanted me to prove that the cable came out of a UL certified factory. And then there's another capacitor in that product that has the logo CMA on it, which is a big association. And I went to my factory. I said, hey, you know my container was stopped. Can you send me certification and proof that your factory is a member or is approved by UL and you are also authorized to use the CMA logo and they ran away. They disappeared.   Afolabi: So I told the customs can I come and just stick all these things out and I can cut out the cable. I can do this. They're like nope, it's going in the trash. So the whole container about who knows 50,000 worth of product was trashed. On top of all the penalties, examination, demurrage, all manner of fees climbed on top of it. So if I had falsified the document and say, oh, I'm bringing something else that is duty-free, the penalty would have been a lot severe. So those are some of the things you should watch out for as an importer. Make sure that you're using the right HTS code, the right tariff code, to correctly declare your goods, so that they will not penalize you under the False Claims Act.   Bradley Sutton: Now, another thing you mentioned was that you do not suggest that anybody communicate with their factories using email and instead another means. So why is that? And then what? How do you think people should be doing 100% of their communication with their factories?   Afolabi: Great, well, I learned that from experience. So I was using my Gmail account to talk to my factory. I didn't know that there was a scammer that intercepted my factory's email as acting to my factory's email, as acting to my factory's email address and hijacked our conversation. So all the while I was talking to the scammer, I didn't realize it was the scammer, because he was impersonating my factory through email and I was able to send money to the scammer. The scammer changed the bank account on the invoice and everything and I sent the money to him, not realizing that it was a scam. If I had been communicating with my factory through WeChat, I wouldn't have fallen for that, because from the very beginning of my conversation now when I'm talking to factories, I take it out of Alibaba, I take it out of every platform and I put it in my WeChat. That way, before I even start talking about sending money or whatever, I already have a communication directly with the factory from my WeChat. So if anybody hijacks that, I would know I will double check through WeChat. I can double check through both emails and WeChat and I also secure the transaction with the Alibaba trade assurance.   Bradley Sutton: All right. Yeah, that's crazy. Your email might have been secure but not the uh. You know not the uh, not the suppliers there, okay. So, yeah, we chat is the way, uh, to go. Now, another thing that sometimes I struggle with and then you talk about in your module, is knowing which labels is a requirement of the country and then also what's requirement of Amazon. So, for example, united states at what? What kind of bags need that? No suffocation like, is it only a bag that has an opening, but if it's fully vacuum sealed bag, it doesn't. Or explain when I need to have that, that, those child warnings on my bagged products coming from China.   Afolabi: Well, uh, for safety, I just put it in, uh, all kinds of anything. Anytime I'm bringing a product that has bags in general. Uh, I know for Amazon it has to have an opening that you put the product in. It's not like those uh uh bubble bags, but it is a bag you open and put a product in. But me, just for the sake of sanity and safety, I just put it on anytime. Anytime I'm bringing the product.   Bradley Sutton: What does it say? What exactly does the label say that you're putting on these bags?   Afolabi: Yeah the suffocation. It's a generic suffocation warning which you can find the text anywhere online.   Bradley Sutton: All right, so that's important too. Another thing that was new to me that you talked about was mold ownership. Now, me, I don't have any molds, or actually I do for a couple of accounts. But obviously, project X, we know, we're doing egg trays, we're doing, we're doing, you know, coffin shelves and things like that Wooden products. It didn't require a mold like for plastic product. But a lot of people, when they're making original designs or you know, brand new product, that requires tooling and molds. Hey, this is a kind of a big investment at the beginning. What are some things that that sellers should avoid? Because one thing that you know some people might think is logical is well, maybe we can split costs or with the supplier on this mold, but you actually said that's not a good idea, right?   Afolabi: Yes, correct. So when your, when your product involves or requires a mold and the supplier says, well, you know, we can share the mold cost with you, you know, so that we can make it easy and cheaper for you to get into production, it's a no-no, because the moment they share the mold cost with you, they jointly own that mold and you're bind and married to that factory forever. If you try to move that mold, they'll say no, it's our mold too. We paid for it together. Another thing is to always have a mold ownership agreement when mold comes into play, have it in writing, both in Mandarin and English or Cantonese and English, and say I own this mold and I can take it anytime I want. I can move it to any factory. Okay, what if this factory gets into trouble? Or what if they run out of capacity and they can't even? They don't even have the capacity to fulfill your production anymore. What are you going to do your stuck? So it's better to always have that clause in your mold that you own your mold 100% and you can take it anywhere you want.   Afolabi: Another thing I tell importers or product innovators is that when you're doing mold, make sure you don't ask your factory for their input on your design, you say, hey, what do you think? This is the way I want to make this product. What do you think? The moment your factory contributes to your designs, then by Chinese law they are co-inventors with you. If they're co-inventors, they have legal claims on your idea and they can sell it to whoever they want. They can make that product for anybody they want because you jointly developed it together with them. So you got to be very careful on contribution or collaboration. You don't collaborate with your factory. Hire your own industrial engineering or structural engineer or whoever, and you guys talk about it, come up with your product and then you give it to the mold maker. Sometimes people use their factory to negotiate the mold. I don't do that, honestly. I take my molds to the mold maker. I go to a mold maker to make my mold and then I bring it from the mold maker and I bring it to the factory. Many factory will want to say, oh, this is our mold. It's $2,000 for the mold. You don't know where they made the mold from. And if you don't have the connection to the mold, how would you retrieve the mold. If something falls apart between you and the factory, right, they would tell you where the mold came from.   Afolabi: I actually had a situation and this is one out of a million whereby we made a mold and we stopped production of that product and the factory thought we were going to move the production to another factory, but that was not the case. But he's like no, I'm not going to release this mold. We were like but we paid for it, it's ours. He says I know, but I'm not giving it back. Why? Because this mold was made from a mold maker that we don't even have a contact of, so we don't even know how to reach this mold maker. Only the factory knows how to get to them. And they said nope, we're not telling you nothing, we're not releasing the mold. We went back and forth. They said okay, we can pay you for the fraction of the mold. I'm like why would you want to pay us for the mold? We don't want you making it for anybody else. They said nope, we will pay you $600 and we'll take the mold. We're not making it for anybody, but we need to safeguard it, we need to make sure it doesn't go. I'm like that doesn't even make any sense. Yeah, we, we, unfortunately, we had to abandon the factory, abandon the mold and just get out. But the, the, the confiscated the mold. They did not release it.   Bradley Sutton: Wow. Okay, so that's definitely something to keep in mind as well. Let's switch gears and talk about stuff that's not in your Freedom Ticket module. For the rest of what you're talking about there, the Freedom Ticket students definitely can and should go check it out, but I didn't even know until today, for some reason, that you also did the 3PL services. Now, since you said that you're in a 3PL right now you know, in 2024, obviously the biggest change you know you've been selling on Amazon for 20 years, but, uh, probably you'd agree that one of the bigger changes that Amazon sellers are worried about this year is the new um fees. You know, like, of course, we've got a high return product rate fee and there's also uh, but now there's inventory fee, low inventory fee, and then the big, the big one that affects literally everybody using FBA is the inbound cost when you are inbound placement fee. So, as a 3PL, what you know more than just one seller who only has their situation, you're dealing with many, many sellers and who are all navigating these things differently. Yes, what's the consensus Like? What are your clients doing? What are you suggesting to them to do in order to help alleviate the cost of these new fees? What are they doing differently than they did before these fees?   Afolabi: Well, we have different customers that have unique situations. Many people think that when Amazon came out with the AWD, which is the warehouse distribution, that they go ahead and fire their 3PL. We don't need 3PLs anymore and stuff like that. But they're learning more and more that I think it's Amazon's way of controlling and maintaining visibility and shutting you out of visibility, where they kind of control your whole entire supply chain. So if you're selling in other marketplaces, I still feel that you need your 3PL for you to be able to diversify, sell at Walmart, Ebay, whatever anywhere else, Shopify your own store to be able to fulfill from all those places. I know Amazon wants to fulfill those places so that you can get access to your customer data, but I want to maintain visibility. But in terms of fees placement fees I know even the AWD is not for all products, it's only for a certain small number of you know product catalog I still believe that if you can be sending your product, if you time it really well and you're watching all your inventory very well, I think you can be. If you're on top of it, you send, you know, maybe case basis or pilot basis or using freight like here we use a lot of freight for our customers and it saves them a lot of money and the products get there on time, because we have UPS freight truck come here every time and when they come here they take it straight to the depot. When they take it straight to depot, it ends up in Amazon within a day or two, so they're able to save.   Afolabi: Also, if you want to use Amazon Freight from your 3PL, that's also advisable. What do I mean by that? So if you're shipping sometimes more than 10 or 12 pallets of goods, it may be better to just request for Amazon to send you an empty truck from their freight service. So you go to freightAmazoncom, they will send you an empty truck and you pay for everything you fill that truck with. So the truck rate could be 750 bucks or 600 bucks, depending on where it's going to, but they send you that truck. You could fill it with either 15 pallets or up to maybe up to 26 pallets or something. It's the same 750 bucks, which saves you a lot of money when you're, you know, shipping your products to all the fulfillment warehouses. So that's what, uh, that's my number one way. I would, you know, number one thing that I'll tell uh uh sellers to make sure they're able to consolidate and sell box shipments in chunks like that. If you're not that big, you can just be sending. SPD is still okay, whereby you send a few boxes today, keep watching your inventory and then send another few boxes next week or two weeks time, based on your velocity.   Bradley Sutton: What's your 30 or 60 second tip? We call this that 60 second tip of the day that you can give. You know you've been giving strategies throughout this whole episode, but if you were to have a quick hitting one that you think people should be following, what is it?   Afolabi: What I would think would be good now is it's not sexy, but it's very important and is to start taking the CBP, which is Customs and Border Protection, to start taking them seriously, because they have started to check all these cargos, especially coming from China. They already know that people are rerouting their products. They already know that people are falsifying their documents and stuff like that. They're clamping on forced child labor a lot. I was just talking to somebody last week and his product had been stopped since December because one component in his product was made out of a region in China that was known for forced child labor and for that they sent his container back to China after detaining it for many months. They had to send it back and I see that popping up in Mexico as well.   Afolabi: So start taking CBP seriously in terms of check with your broker. Check that your products are compliant to US government regulations. We're actually rolling out a product this end of this month that can actually help you track all your products and cross check it across all governmental agencies. If your supplier or if your product has something that the US government doesn't like, it will flag it so that can be found on a tariff terminator website. Very soon, like end of this month, you will start being able to track and monitor your ASINs to make sure that your risk of being stopped or your product being destroyed or being prohibited from coming into the US. You would be better prepared and know ahead of time to know all the watch lists, to be aware of the watch lists of all the people and factories and things that the government doesn't like, because it's not pretty for them to stop your goods and don't let it come in.   Bradley Sutton: All right, Good to know. Good to know. Now, if people want to get more information from you or reach out to find out more about your services. How can people find you on the interwebs out there?   Afolabi: So they can find us at honuworldwide.com or tariftaminator.com Tariff as in T-A-R-I-F-F-T-E-R-M-I-A-N-A-T-O-R. Tarifterminator.com, or Honu Worldwide as H-O-N-U Worldwide.com, or you can send us an email at savings at HonuWorldwide.com.   Bradley Sutton: All right, Afolabi, thank you so much for coming on the show. I'll let you know what I think of the fish pepper soup and maybe we'll reach out to you next year to see what's new in your world. Knowing you, you'll probably be on five different things already in this short year. So thank you so much for sharing your knowledge with us.   Afolabi: You're welcome. Let me know how the fish pepper soup tastes. I always want to. I'm curious.   Bradley Sutton: All right, All right, I'll let you know. I'll let you know.
6/22/202432 minutes, 10 seconds
Episode Artwork

#571 - Amazon PPC Deep Dive with Destaney

week’s Tacos Tuesday show is brimming with expert advice on leveraging Amazon's new data rollouts, like brand metrics and category insights, now seamlessly integrated into Helium 10’s Adtomic tool. Discover how these new metrics can help you understand both organic and sponsored performance, offering a pathway to improved conversion rates by analyzing category averages. Plus, we dive into innovative advertising elements, including AI and sponsored TV, to future-proof your Amazon PPC strategies. Launching a new product on Amazon and unsure about the best PPC tactics? Destaney breaks down the nuances between phrase, broad, and exact match campaigns, emphasizing the necessity of bid evaluation and search term analysis to boost exact match performance. Learn about keyword isolation and its potential to enhance relevancy and campaign success. With actionable tips on using our Keyword Tracker to analyze Amazon's recommended rank, you’ll find out how to significantly improve your organic ranking during the crucial launch phase. As Prime Day approaches, how can you keep your ad campaigns sharp and your sales soaring? We explore effective strategies to drive extra traffic while overcoming eligibility issues, such as running sponsor brands to subpages and utilizing alternative platforms like TikTok and Google. Our discussion includes crucial advice on building landing pages for optimal conversions and making savvy budget adjustments for Prime Day. Balancing defensive campaigns with organic sales is key, and Destaney shares her wisdom on maintaining a competitive edge without cannibalizing your organic presence. Join us for this insightful episode packed with practical tips to elevate your Amazon advertising game! In episode 571 of the Serious Sellers Podcast, Bradley and Destaney discuss: 00:00 - Amazon Advertising Strategy Session & AMA With Expert Guest 03:11 - Brand Metrics in Advertising Strategy 05:31 - Value of Amazon's Search Query Performance 08:48 - Understanding Repeat Purchases for Supplements 13:44 - Keyword Isolation Debate and Strategy 17:13 - Amazon Relevancy and Ranking Insights 20:45 - Optimizing Pricing Strategy for Prime Day 22:43 - Optimizing Amazon Advertising Budget Allocation 23:59 - Alternative Traffic Sources and Prime Day 30:22 - Amazon Advertising Strategies and Tips 31:31 - Planning for Prime Day Success ► Instagram: instagram.com/serioussellerspodcast ► Free Amazon Seller Chrome Extension: https://h10.me/extension ► Sign Up For Helium 10: https://h10.me/signup  (Use SSP10 To Save 10% For Life) ► Learn How To Sell on Amazon: https://h10.me/ft ► Watch The Podcasts On YouTube: youtube.com/@Helium10/videos Transcript Bradley Sutton: Today we've got expert guest Destaney back on TACoS Tuesday and she's going to be answering a lot of advertising questions on a variety of topics such as keyword isolation, sponsor display strategy, Prime Day, PPC tips and more. How cool is that? Pretty cool, I think. If you're like me, maybe you were intimidated about learning how to do Amazon PPC, or maybe you think you just don't have the hours and hours that it takes to download and sort through all of those sponsored ad’s reports that Amazon produces for you. Adtomic for me allowed me to learn PPC for the first time, and now I'm managing over 150 PPC campaigns across all of my accounts in only two hours a week. Find out how Adtomic can help you level up your PPC game. Visit h10.me/adtomic for more information. That's h10.me/adtomic. Hello everybody, and welcome to another episode of the Serious Sellers Podcast by Helium 10. I'm your host, Bradley Sutton, and this is the show, that is our monthly TACoS Tuesday show, where we talk about anything and everything Amazon advertising related. And as always, we have special guests on with us each month and every other month we have the specialist of guest here. So, without further ado, let me go ahead and introduce her Destaney welcome, welcome back. How's it going?   Destaney Wishon: It is going incredible. Super excited to be here.   Bradley Sutton: Can you believe we are in the middle of June of 2024 already? It's like I don't know what's going on here.   Destaney Wishon: We're already being thrown straight into Prime Day planning, like it never stops.   Bradley Sutton: Yeah, it's never ends and, like I think the last few years that I've been in the Amazon world, it has been the fastest years of my life, like it's just going by. There's always so many things to do. So, just right off the bat, let's, let's just kick it off with anything new in the Amazon advertising world. Over the last couple months since you've been on here, you know like new reports from Amazon or your team has been trying out some new strategies or trying out some new ad types or different things, anything you can update us on.   Destaney Wishon: I think the two biggest things Amazon's given us a lot more data lately. Helium 10 and Adtomic have already been pulling in some of that data from like a category perspective, so insights and planning brand metrics, which is being tied directly into Adtomic now, is one of the best rollouts in my opinion, and they've recently updated it to add even more data around like subscribe and save and lifetime value and repeat purchases, which is always a conversation for sellers, as well as allowing us to see category comparisons how many clicks are within our category, how many detailed page views are within our category and how are we comparing to average. I think that was a huge rollout. And then the second big rollout is just all the creative elements we've gotten recently, either from an AI perspective or like sponsored TV. I think those are really big and even if you're not ready for them yet, it's showing the direction Amazon's going, which is the important part.   Bradley Sutton: Yes, now I was on some kind of training yesterday or day before and somebody actually asked about that the brand metrics that is showing in advertising, and so that brand metrics page that's showing all you know the data there is across organic and sponsored, or it's only showing you what's happening in sponsor. Okay, good, yeah, I was like there's a 50-50 chance. Somebody asked me which one and I'm like I'm going to, because I saw there was some like fine print and it just made it seem like it was across the board. So how are you, which parts of that are you using and how is that affecting your ad strategy?   Destaney Wishon: I think the biggest thing is again, it's showing you retail and advertising, organic and advertising combined so we don't really have a lot of resources for that anywhere else. Those are two different API’s from a technical perspective. So, amazon doesn't usually give us that data. But you know there's a lot of questions already in the comments asking about conversion rate and performance and efficiency. And Amazon advertising is amazing for driving clicks. That is its job. Think about it as a customer. If you click on a sponsored ad, you're ready to purchase and if you don't purchase, it's because the price was wrong or the listing was poor, the reviews were poor. If the ad drove the click, it was successful. The reason brand metrics is important is because brand metrics gives us conversion rate compared to the category. So, you can pull up brand metrics right now and like, let's say, I'm selling dog toys, I can see that my conversion rate is a 23%, but the category median is a 30%. If I'm converting less than the category, my PPC is not going to be near as efficient, because people are going to click, but they're going to buy a category product and not mine. So that's probably the biggest thing that I'm using it for.     Bradley Sutton: Okay, cool, cool. Now you know. Speaking of conversion rates, you know obviously there's search create performance that can help you with your conversion rates at the even keyword level. But then there's also the counterpoint that sometimes people do is that, hey, you know, the data there is so limited compared to overall. You know, like anybody can just see the number of sales and compare it, because there's only a certain kind of, you know a certain set of situations where it's going to register in search query performance. You know, like if somebody clicks something today and then 25 hours later, they actually buy it, it doesn't count. They click on something, they click something else, they hit back on their browser and they purchase. It doesn't count. You know, like I don't know about your experience. My experience sometimes is between twenty-five to forty percent of overall purchases, but my opinion I just want to get yours is that it's still valuable because it's still apples to apples it's not giving you the whole picture but valuable because it's still apples to apples. It's not giving you the whole picture, but you can at least benchmark what's happening with you at the keyword level compared to the exact same situation for other competitors. Is that how you feel, or are you kind of ignoring that data.   Destaney Wishon: A hundred percent. From a volume perspective, like a sales volume or an impression, I don't use it because, like you said, it's a smaller data set, but from a conversion rate perspective it's probably still showing you. You know 30% to 40% of your overall data set, but from a conversion rate perspective it's probably still showing you. You know 30% to 40% of your overall data set. Here's how it converts. So that actually scales out pretty well in my opinion, and that is super, super valuable to understand. Because, again, if someone else is converting better than you, they're going to get the same amount of clicks but drive more orders. That's what conversion rate is at the end of the day. So. when you're able to dive into SQP, you can actually see those comparisons on the search term level.   Bradley Sutton: Yes, absolutely. All right. Now, going back to Atomic, you had talked a little bit about Adtomic and some of the newer features, but something that's been out for a while now is the custom bid rules. Have you, for any of your clients that you're using Atomic for, have you started at all with the custom bid rules? or are you still using, like,  just the Adtomic algorithm and making decisions based on that?   Destaney Wishon: Anyone who, I think, has followed me knows that I'm a pretty big fan of breaking out by strategy.  So, that's where we recommend implementing custom bid rules is because there are certain keywords that maybe you are willing to take a loss on at the end of the day from a keyword level. Again, be clear. I don't want to say you know, go run your overall amazon advertising at a 400 ACoS but there's certain strategies that are going to need different rules and that's why it's so important not to have a set it and forget it automation running. In my opinion, now if your only goal is a 20% ACoS, you don't care about anything else. Your only goal is profitability for your business, for your solopreneur endeavors. That's fine, but if you're really building a brand that's going to scale, it's so competitive in the category and CPCs are kind of increasing that you're going to need to have some keywords that maybe you target at a 50% ACoS because they're your top sales driving keywords, and then maybe you're creating a campaign targeting competitor ASINs that you want to run at a different ACoS. That's where it gets really important to start building out those segments and strategies. We also do it on the lifecycle level. So, if you have an established product with hundreds of reviews, you can run at a lower ACoS because your conversion rates higher. If you have a new product launch, you don't want to set a low ACoS or else you're going to drive zero sales and your honeymoon period is going to flop because you have no data.   Bradley Sutton: So, there's a lot of people, maybe even watching, who are for the. If they're just getting into supplements, they're. They probably have some crazy sticker shock of what kind of cost per clicks they have, but you know how, how do you count? You know how, how do you calculate LTV? You know, with the data that Amazon you know gives and tools available and where is your like, like, how do you, you know help brands like that really focus to make sure long term they're profitable?   Destaney Wishon: Historically, this has been a really vague area in Amazon. They haven't given us a lot of insights. I know that we have a lot of plans on the Helium 10 side here, but the first thing that you need to consider is just that repeat purchase rate. In supplements we consistently see $20 to $40 cost per clicks for a $20 to $40 product. And the part that people need to remember is, if you get a customer to buy your supplements and you believe in your product, your supplement should be good enough that they buy it the next month and the month after and the month after. So, that's why lifetime value is so important to understand, because if they end up buying your $20 supplement four times, that's $80. So, even though you paid $20 cost per click, the product you sold was actually $80, because ideally, they come back and repeat purchase from you. So, it's super important. I think. When it comes to actually coming up and finding those insights, the majority of people rely on typically their DTC information because that's where you have it most easily accessible. Amazon gives you subscribe and save data within brand metrics, insights and planning. Amazon gives you subscribe and subscribe and save data within brand metrics, insights and planning, like I mentioned, and also through DSP, you can have a pretty clear indicator of what you subscribe and save or your repeat purchase rate is, and that's what helps you justify those high cost per clicks and that's why you see them as well. People know that someone comes back five to six times. They're going to be willing to pay for that first purchase because they have a great product.   Bradley Sutton: All right, we got the first question from Joan. Joan says it's a pretty common question. I would say what's the best strategy to control ad spend? For a $21 item in a competitive niche, cost per click is often over $2. Some of those supplement sellers wish they had cost per clicks at $2. But we're selling product but we're only helping Jeff buy more rockets. We aren't profitable unless I can improve ad spend efficiency. So, right off the bat, if at $2 on a $20 product they're not profitable, probably their conversion rate is not very high. I'm assuming on some of these keywords.   Destaney Wishon: A hundred percent. The first thing is to realize whether or not you have a conversion rate problem or an Amazon advertising problem. So, going back to our initial kind of call out, I recommend going into Adtomic, going into your account overview. A few people later on have asked this question on where you find the data I mentioned Adtomic, account overview, brand performance and then, once you're within brand performance, you can niche down and figure out how you're performing compared to the category. If you're converting better than the category, then it is an ad efficiency issue. It means you need to improve the keywords you're targeting. Instead of going after dog toy, which may be too broad for your dog toy, go after soft dog toy for small dogs, where you're going to be sacrificing lower volume but a higher conversion rate because the keywords are a lot more related to the product you're selling. So, you can justify that $2 cost per click. The other answer is to just lower your bids. If you can't afford $2 because you're not converting, well, lower your bids. What's going to happen when you lower your bid is your ad's going to show up in less premium real estate at the bottom of the page, or page two and page three, but it's going to be cheaper and more profitable for you. So that's the trade-off you're going to have to make until you improve your conversion rate.   Bradley Sutton: Jay Smith says hello from the UK I recently launched should I be doing this in a British accent? I recently launched a new product and I'm finding my phrase and broad match campaigns are performing much capital, much better than exact match. Are there any scenarios where you would suggest pausing exact match campaigns and only running phrase and broad during the first few weeks of launch? I don't think I've seen this question before.   Destaney Wishon: Yeah, I wouldn't recommend pausing them. I think the first thing you need to realize is do you have different bids across all three of them? More than likely your exact match bids are higher, so it's maybe just a little bit more expensive for you. The other thing to consider is, again, if I'm targeting dog toys, an exact match that's really broad from a term itself right, so it can be a little bit competitive targeting just dog toys. But if I run dog toys and broad, I'm showing up for dog toys for small dogs, dog toys for this, this and this. So, sometimes your broad and phrase match are going to be a little bit more profitable because they're targeting longer tail terms that are more aligned with your product. So, open up your campaign, open up your ad group, look at the search terms that those broad and phrase matches are performing on and if they're long tail, take out those long tails and put them into exact match and you can control the performance just as well. Easy answer is lower your bid on exact match to find the conversion ACoS point. But the longer answer and the better long-term solutions to figure out why the search terms and your broad and phrase match are performing that much better and then move them to an exact so you can control a bit precisely within your exact match campaign.   Bradley Sutton: Excellent. On the flip side, here's one that we get all the time and this is, you know, the eternal debate. this is an eternal debate here. Uh, it's from hey, hey there. When you use a search term from an auto ad for an exact or product ad, should you move it to negative in the auto to avoid redundancy? Is there any cost per bid difference that could affect impression and conversion between those ads? So, this is also called keyword isolation and Destaney, what's your philosophy on that?   Destaney Wishon: I am very familiar with why people isolate keywords. We personally don't isolate keywords because we find that when you move them from an auto campaign to a manual campaign, you're starting from scratch from a relevancy perspective. So, within your auto campaign you got to think, your bids are typically lower. They're typically slowly focused on profitability, so you're casting a really wide net. So, the ASIN or the search term you're converting on within the auto campaign could be on page seven and page eight. It could be within the frequently bought together section that's a new sponsored section or anywhere else on the page and it's running well for a reason because Amazon has, you know, the shopper history and they're targeting those placements because they have a lot of data. When you pull it out, if you negate it, there's pretty much a hundred percent chance it's not going to perform the exact same when you put it into a manual campaign. Most people kind of almost restart that relevancy journey that they were on and find that their manual campaign does not perform as well, especially in the first six to eight weeks because you have to refine that sweet spot. We continue to run them separately and just control the bids.   Destaney Wishon: There's a few scenarios where I could recommend isolation. If it's your core keyword, eating up all of your impressions and sales in your auto campaign, sure move it over to a manual. But then also the second part of your question is there a cost per bid difference? Yes, typically there is per bid difference. Yes, typically there is. We find autos are typically winning inventory for lower CPCs and impression conversions. Also, a yes, your manual campaigns typically higher impression because you're typically running a bid specifically for that keyword.   Bradley Sutton: Excellent, excellent. All right, a question I think I can handle. I'll do this one that's from Jay Smith. During the first week of launch, my sales have been really high, especially on top keywords, but my organic rank is not moving much on many of the top keywords. Any tips for improving organic rank during launch, or does it just take time and consistent sales? My BSR is top 10 in my subcategories when my sales are good. So, a couple of things. First of all, make sure that you have boost on in keyword tracker so that we're checking 24 hours a day and rotating browsing scenarios just to see you know, who knows, maybe your rank is improving in some locations, just not, uh, others or some browsing scenario. So, make sure you have that boost on. That's that rocket ship. The other thing is look at the CPR number inside of keyword tracker. Once you have you know you already said you have the keywords in Keyword Tracker there's a customized CPR number. It's actually different than the one that's in Cerebro and Magnet because it's specific to your listing, takes into consideration the age of it, your Title Density and things like that, and then see what that number is. If that number is, let's just say, 50, that means that, hey, over a week, week and a half, you would need around 50 people to search, find and buy your product, whether it's organic, whether it's in PPC. Probably it's going to be PPC. If you're not organically ranked very high, it's 100% from PPC and so you can clearly see how many conversions you're getting on that keyword and that's the best chance, that number of getting you to stick to page one. So, if you're not at that number yet, well, there's another reason.   Bradley Sutton: The other thing to look at is you could have a relevancy issue to Amazon. So run your product in Cerebro and then sort it by Amazon recommended rank. All right, this to me is the most slept on mini feature in all of Helium 10. It's a direct link to the Amazon API. This is not a Helium 10 estimation or an algorithm or anything like that. It's directly to the actual Amazon advertising API. But it gives you a look into what Amazon thinks your product is. So just sort that in ascending order, meaning it's, you're going to see the Amazon recommended rank one, two, three, four, five, six, seven and just take a look at the general uh, those, those general keywords. It tells you what Amazon thinks your product is. And so, if it does, if some of the keywords you're trying to increase your rank on are very specific and none of them even appear, like in the top 20, 30, 40, 50 words, well, yeah, it might take you. It might take more effort, to get to page one. Or you need to re-optimize your listing to kind of like show Amazon what your product is. But I've had issues like that where my listing was fine but Amazon was confused about it and so, even though I was getting sales, it wasn't increasing my organic rank. So, there's three things that you can try there. Kim says is there any magic mojo way to control profitability? When bids quickly rise due to an upcoming event like Prime Day, I often find that the increase in sales rarely offsets the lost profit. So, if I could find an automated way to control bidding, it'd be helpful. There's some good questions today.   Destaney Wishon: There is. Your bids don't change unless you're changing them is the first thing that I'll say. So, unless you're using a software with rules that you're changing them is the first thing that I'll say so. Unless you're using a software with rules that you're not controlling or you have aggressive placement modifiers on, your bids will stay the same, regardless of what-?   Bradley Sutton: She's probably talking about cost per click. I bet you she mistyped that probably.   Destaney Wishon: CPCs. So, if we're talking about CPCs, it's also related. You're not going to see a major change. You can keep your bids low during Prime Day if you want. Just know that you're probably not going to get as much traffic because the rest of the market is increasing their bids. So as everyone else is bidding higher and higher and higher, it's like bidding on real estate. You're going to be showing up lower, lower on the page, so you're just going to get less sales and some people are okay with that on Prime Day. I will say personally, across the board, as an agency, we find that the increase in conversion rate almost always offsets the increase in bids when we're really strategic. That being said, the majority of our brands do have some type of promotion or deal or discount, so their conversion rates inflated because customers think that they're getting a deal. So, short answer is don't rely on placement modifiers and keep your bid management software set to a target ACoS and you're probably not going to see that big of a change in bids on the day of.   Bradley Sutton: Shubham says what's our launch strategy for 50 product? Prime day is also coming up, we wanted to reduce the price to where our customer buys, but how many keywords shall we run in? Launch PPC? But let's just take the other part of that, you know, those people who might have some products that are going to be ready in the next, uh, month, month and a half. Should they just go ahead and launch? Should they wait until actual prime day and take advantage of that? Should they wait until after prime day? What's your general strategy as far as timing goes?   Destaney Wishon: The first brand that I managed on my own as a consultant was a prime day launch and it was incredibly successful, but this was seven years ago. The thing to consider is how much you're going to lean into Bradley's point. If you don't reduce the price, you are going to drown in Prime Day and not do incredibly well, and you may not anyways, because you don't have a lot of reviews. That being said, if you plan on doing a pretty heavy discount on Prime Day, it is a fantastic way to get inflated traffic from people who are ready to buy, and customers on Prime Day are a lot less sensitive to reviews, in my opinion, and a lot more sensitive to price. So, I always hate this question because I feel like it's so dependent on budget and financing and all these other variables. But if you want to heavily reduce your price and stand out, then Prime Day is the way to go. There's no other industry that drives this amount of traffic on any specific day. I don't think, so definitely take advantage of that.   Bradley Sutton: He had a follow-up question. He or she had a follow-up question. At what point should we start using Adtomic? We're new launching our very first product, so is there, like you know? Is this something that somebody should be using from day one, should they reach a certain advertising spend figure? What's your personal opinion?   Destaney Wishon: Personal opinion is it's really dependent on, I think, what your skill set is internally and where your time's going. PPC is a major efficiency time suck. I think it's probably one of the most hands-on, consistent, redundant tasks and that's where everybody needs a bid management solution, no matter if that's you going in every day and managing bids by hand or relying on a tool like Adtomic. I'll leave that up to you. But if you're running any Amazon advertising campaigns and you're not managing your bids, that is the biggest mistake you can make. So, I think the convenience of Adtomic, incorporating directly into category insights and like Market Tracker 360, is the biggest value add in my opinion. But if you're in your first few weeks and you have time to go in and optimize bids manually, then that's perfectly fine.   Bradley Sutton: David says what metric do you look at to determine where a budget needs to be increased or decreased across your campaign types? Sponsor brand, sponsor product and sponsor display?   Destaney Wishon: Love this question. As a whole, we typically see sponsor products drive around 70 to 80% of sales because they make up the most real estate on the page. Sponsor brand. Sponsor brand's video is 10 to 15%. Sponsor display is the least amount of budget, only because most people aren't fully utilizing it appropriately. At the end of the day, sponsored brands and sponsored products, RoAS and ACoS should be almost the same if you're running them appropriately. I've pulled this across hundreds of millions of spend and it's still just targeting keywords and setting bids. So, for those two ad types, you should increase or decrease based off RoAS, for the most part, or ACoS, but your ACoS and RoAS should be the same. That being said, if you are managing a brand that has a good DTC presence or a meta presence and you have amazing video assets and amazing lifestyle images, sometimes we'll shift more budget to sponsor brand and sponsor display because we want to educate our customer with those videos before we convert them with sponsored products.   Bradley Sutton: Chris says if you've got an eligibility issue, what are other ways to drive traffic aside?   Destaney Wishon: A great question. If one thing we'll see is some brands will only have certain products running into eligibility issues, but all their other products will be okay. If that's the case, we recommend still running sponsor brands to the store. You can create a subpage with some of your products that are ineligible and some of them are eligible and continue to run sponsor brand traffic as a really quick workaround. Beyond that, I think it really depends on product type. Like TikTok can be fantastic if you're great at the videography and the UGC needed to make TikTok successful. Google can be good, but typically you need to build a landing page between your Google and your Amazon ads so that way you have your conversion increase still, Bradley, do you have any other recommendations here?   Bradley Sutton: No, you kind of hit it, you know. And then, plus two, you know there's other platforms that you know might be able to drive some traffic. And then you know, the more your branded search increases, the more organic, you know, eyeballs you guys are going to get without, you know, sponsored, but you know that goes for anybody. You know whether you are eligible or not. That's kind of like the goal is to is to get a lot of organic eyeballs on your products without having to spend, without having to spend. Brendan. A lot of people think about Prime Day coming up, how do you approach prime day, lead in, lead out? When it comes to budgeting also, what's a fair estimate for cost per click lift? So, like, is there a rule of thumb where, hey, usually you need to increase your, your budgets this amount, you know to make sure you have enough, or usually you need to you know boost your cost per click X percentage.   Destaney Wishon: I'm going to start with the lead in, lead out. That one's super easy to kind of answer. Typically, the seven days leading into prime day are historically the worst performance in all of Amazon advertising. End of story. That being said, the part that people forget is that customers are shopping. They're just not buying. That's why your clicks are up but your sales are down is because customers are starting to build their carts for Prime Day. They know that Prime Day is now a national holiday, so in the back of their mind, they may go onto a platform and say, hey, shoot, I need my toilet paper that I always buy. Oh wait, I'm not going to buy it until prime day, so I'm going to hold off.   Destaney Wishon: So, some people like to lower their bids and budgets on the week leading up. I prefer to continue to run at the same strategy if I'm running a dealer discount, because those customers are going to add to cart and click and then when they see my discount the next week, they're going to check out. So, I am still building my funnel and attracting my shoppers the weekend, even though they're not buying until seven days later. That is one really important key to mention. Again, if you're not running deals or discounts, maybe it's worth it lowering your bids and budgets on lead in lead out. The last two years has been some of the strongest conversion rates we have seen across the board even stronger than prime day in a few instances. And that's because prime day is no longer prime day, it's prime week and it's being challenged by Walmart and every off platform. So, customers are still continuing to shop on the days after.   Destaney Wishon: So, lead out, we continue to keep bids and budgets high and we'll also run a lot of retargeting if we're running any type of DSP or sponsored display, because sponsored display and DSP allows us to capture all of the traffic and all the clicks from Prime Day and then continue to retarget that audience after Prime Day. So that's super important and super valuable. And then estimate for CPC lifts. There's really not one because it's like every agency or software that releases CPC insights is skewed by the type of brands they're managing. Right, pack view always cracks me up. When pack view does like their insights, it's going to be skewed by a lot of enterprise brands. So, their CPC lifts could be 50% because they're running crazy discounts and have crazy marketing budgets. But maybe a smaller software won't increase their bids because they don't believe in Prime Day right, so we personally do 20% to 30% increase in bids if we're running deals or discounts and just go from there.     Bradley Sutton: All right. Last question of the day before we get maybe into just your closing comments or your closing tip. This is from somebody new who hasn't asked a question today. Zee says does sponsored products and sponsor display defensive campaigns eat up organic sales? Does it affect my TACoS in the long run?   Destaney Wishon: The answer is yes. There's some level of defensive campaigns. That would have happened anyways, but that's really hard to prove because the way Amazon is set up as a platform what happens if you do not advertise there? Someone else will. So, you need to decide on the balance of do you have a strong enough competitive advantage that a customer's going to stay on your page and not go to your competitor's page, and is it that big of a deal if you do cannibalize some of your organic presence? I would rather cannibalize some of my organic presence than lose a customer to a competitor. So, it's just deciding. Now, that being said, Celis, who is on the Helium 10 podcast, at one point he runs Lego, or used to run Lego. He was one of my great friends in the space and he tried to convince me that, like, branded defenses never need it. And I was like Celis, Lego doesn't have competitors, like, of course you don't need to bid on Lego. Who the heck's gonna try to compete? So, it's definitely a little bit dependent on depending on your category. I like the. I'm enjoying the conversation here on if it's niche or niche.   Bradley Sutton: Andre says it's niche in the UK, all right, niche in the USA, he says so as well. Okay, yeah, we have started a big debate here this is the one takeaway that people have from today. But in order to make that the not the one takeaway people have, can you give us like a 30 or 60 second uh strategy to close this out, something you think that could uh help sellers, maybe leading up to Prime Day? Or it could be just a general advertising strategy or a metric that you think people are sleeping on, or an ad type anything at all that you can think of that quick hitting and people can take away from today?   Destaney Wishon: I'll give two really big ones. Start viewing your Amazon advertising by strategy. Have some keywords solely focused on profitability, where your goal is to lower your bids and have an amazing ACoS and RoAS. Have some campaigns that are all about sales and driving volume and organic rank. Have some that are for brand defense. And when you segment out these campaigns, that gives you budget control. So, to Zee's question earlier of like hey, maybe I do realize my brand defense campaigns are eating up my budget. Lower your budget and shift your budget over to your organic rank campaigns. When you segment, it gives you maximum control. The second thing I'm going to shout out is the last webinar we did on ad type expansion. This is a hundred percent. The second biggest issue I see within accounts is not expanding to sponsor brands because they don't think it's right for them. At the end of the day, sponsor brands will perform almost identical to your sponsor products with good bid management and good campaign setup. But it's more real estate on the page that's unique real estate. So, you're going to show up at the very top of the page. You're going to show up on product detail pages in placements that sponsor products does not win.   Bradley Sutton: Awesome, all right. Well, Destaney, thank you for sharing your knowledge with us. You're not going to be back here on TACoS Tuesday, at least before Prime Day. Maybe we can. We can talk offline about doing something Prime Day related, since there are so many Prime Day questions. It's obvious that it's top of mind and, unlike inventory and other things you know, PPC is something that you can kind of like up to the day before prime day, kind of like, you know, lock in your, your strategy, uh. So that is something maybe we can think about doing next month right before prime day. But, Destaney, thank you so much for joining us and thank you all for such great questions. It seems like every show, the questions get better and better. So, thank you guys for tuning in and we'll see you next month for TACoS Tuesday.  
6/18/202432 minutes, 14 seconds
Episode Artwork

#570 - Amazon Listing Optimization Workshop

Join us in this episode as we bring you an exciting update on Project X, where we gear up to launch a new product on Amazon. We walk you through our meticulous process for keyword research, listing optimization, and advanced photography techniques, essential for any Amazon seller looking to boost their e-commerce game. Utilizing tools like Helium 10's Xray and Cerebro, we identify top-performing competitors and extract valuable keywords to build a successful product listing. This episode is packed with actionable insights, including expert advice from Lailama Hasan, Helium 10’s marketing content manager, and Tayyaba Hasan, project manager at AMZ Onestep. Next, we explore the significance of competitor analysis in optimizing your Amazon listings. Using Helium 10 Listing Builder’s Competitor Performance Score (CPS), we highlight the importance of identifying high-performing keywords that competitors are ranking for, such as "coffin letterboard" and "coffin decor." We also discuss how to enhance product descriptions by addressing common customer pain points and incorporating unique product characteristics. By reviewing competitor images and customer use cases, we gather valuable insights to improve our own product's features and marketing strategies. Finally, we dive into the art of creating impactful product images to boost conversions. With expert guidance from our expert guests, we explore the three main types of images required by Amazon: main images, infographic images, and lifestyle images. Practical tips on lighting, equipment, and setting up backgrounds are shared to help you capture high-resolution, detailed images. Additionally, Tayyaba Hasan explains our four-step approach to creative image development, from research to optimization, and the importance of A-B testing and updating creatives based on customer feedback. Stay tuned as we wrap up with a sneak peek into next week’s webinar about TikTok Shop. In episode 570 of the Serious Sellers Podcast, Bradley, Lailama, and Tayyaba discuss: 00:00 - Listing Optimization Workshop for Amazon Sellers 02:12 - Amazon Product Keyword Analysis Strategy 09:06 - Optimizing Amazon Listings With Competitor Analysis 11:09 - Using AI to Write Product Listings 20:21 - Optimizing Amazon Listing Images for Conversions 21:16 - Product Photography 32:51 - Listing Image Optimization for Amazon 33:04 - Optimizing Listing Images for Conversions 36:24 - Image Concept for Pre-Cut Letter Boards 41:23 - Product Sizing and Reviews 43:38 - Stay Tuned For Our TikTok Shop Webinar Transcript   Bradley Sutton: Today's a deep dive update into Project X, where we're going to launch a new product soon and together we're going to go over how I found the keywords and how I make the listing for this product plus get guest expert advice on photography, A+ Content and more. How cool is that? Pretty cool. I think   Bradley Sutton: Hello everybody and welcome to another episode of the Serious Sellers Podcast by Helium 10. I'm your host, Bradley Sutton, and this is the show that's a completely BS-free, unscripted and unrehearsed organic conversation about serious strategies for serious sellers of any level in the e-commerce world. And you guys can see that I've got all my Project X gear on today because this is a Project X update where you know for those of you who don't know Project X was this case study we did where we found coffin shelves and a whole bunch of other products that we started selling on a real Amazon account and we've kept it going throughout the years. And so I decided to launch a new product, a coffin letter board and I'm going to open up my strategies into how I find the keywords a little bit of a generalization on it, but how I find the keywords, how I put together my listing, and then we're going to talk about some advanced strategies for photography, like when you should use a agency, when you can do it on your own, and how you should tackle things like A+ Content, and how you can look at competitors to get ideas, et cetera. So we're going to go deep into this. This is a recording of a live training that we actually did a few days ago, and so we've cut it up so that you guy s can get the best of those strategies and hopefully you can take some of this and apply it to your next product launch or maybe your first product launch out there. So hope you enjoy this listing optimization workshop.   Bradley Sutton: And I'm going to take you from ground zero, getting the keywords first. So here is on Amazon. First of all, let's go to the main keyword for this product coffin letter board. All right, and this is just a easy way in which we can get the main keywords. Okay, once I get to this page, I like to run Xray on the page to see who are the top sellers. All right, so who is really making the most money in this coffin letter board niche? And this is a niche that you know. I've been watching this for a while. You know like I wish I would have been one of the first ones to sell this, like I was for the coffin shelf, but unfortunately, I wasn't. All right. But that's all right. I wanted to show you guys hey, you don't always have to be the very first to the market.   Bradley Sutton: Now, when you're running Cerebro on a product that you don't even have yet. Like me, I don't have a coffin letter board yet. I need to choose another product to be the baseline product, all right. So I'm just going to pick one here from like around the bottom of the page. It's not selling. Well, let's go ahead and pick this. So that's the first one that you click on. Needs to be a product that is not going to be one of the main competitors. And now what I want to do is I want to select the like five, six, seven or eight top competitors for this product. All right, that are very similar to my product informant function. So this is the number one guy. This, this nom new coffin letter board. All right, believe it or not, this guy is selling 500 of these coffin letter boards a month. Kind of crazy. Uh, here's another one. They're only selling about 29, but we'll go ahead and throw them in, uh in there as well. Here's another one. They're selling 119 units a month. So I definitely want to see what's going on with them. I'm not going to choose this LED one, all right. So this is interesting. This is a. Is this a coffin letter board? Yes, but because it's got this LED like and it's very small, I can tell because of the price is $12. I am not going to look at the keywords for this product, all right, because I don't think that it's going to be super relevant, uh, to me. I want to get hyper relevant products to my product. All right, let's go ahead and choose a couple more here. This one's selling 65 units a month. Here's another one that's selling 29 units a month. All right, this is good. Let's go ahead and enroll with this, all right, so we're going to hit run Cerebro.   Bradley Sutton: What am I doing? What did I just do? Why is this an important step? I want to analyze the competition right. That's where I'm going to get my keywords. What are the keywords that are driving sales, and some of them are doing incredible sales, and these are the keywords that are going to form the base of my listing. And now what I'm looking for is I want to get like the top 10, 15 keywords and make sure those are in phrase form in my listing. All right, and listing builder is going to help with that. But then I don't only want to be relative or indexed for 15 keywords, these uh products. There might be 50, there might be a hundred, there might be more than that of keywords that they might be getting sales from, uh, or that they might be ranking on page one for, and that means that I probably should be able to rank on page one for these, for these keywords. So this is going to be what I'm looking for what are all of the relevant keywords to all of the products, or at least some of the products that I want to be indexed for or searchable for? Okay, so let's go ahead and see the results here. All right, so 8,000 keywords. I know there's a lot better way to find this in 8,000 keywords. Now what I'm going to just do is I'm just going to show you a quick one that I can do, but again, this should take like about an hour by itself. I'm going to do this in five minutes. I'm going to say minimum search volume 200. And then I'm going to go to these advanced rank filters and the number of competitors. I'm going to say minimum one is between rank one and 30 under competitor rank. So basically, what I'm saying is show me all of the keywords Helium 10, where this product, these products, one of these letter boards is ranked between one and 30. That means they're on page one.   Bradley Sutton: Okay, and so I have a whole bunch of keywords that have come up here. You can see some of these coffin letter board sign. Here's a keyword that's a brand name. I always delete those. I don't want to have a brand names on here. I don't want to. You know that's against Amazon terms of service to put brand names in your listing. Okay, um, so I probably should take a lot more time to see if there's any other brand names, but let's just go with this as is. Again, we have videos that have very detailed a strategy on keyword research, but you guys can watch that. We're just going to pretend that we already vetted all of these keywords.   Bradley Sutton: So now, what I'm going to do is I'm going to export this to the clipboard, okay, and then, the next thing I'm going to do is I'm actually going to go into listing builder and I am going to put these keywords in. Now, this is the. This is where listing builder comes in. I could just have this list of keywords, right, and you know, have it in a Google doc or an Excel file or something, right? But I want to be able to make sure that I'm indexed for my important phrases. Plus, I want to make sure that I'm indexed for the phrases that maybe I don't have room for. But I need those individual keywords, and if you're trying to do that just with a naked eye, you know, like that, that's almost impossible to make sure. All right, I'm going to show you how Listing Builder is going to help with that.   Bradley Sutton: So, here in listing builder, um, I'm going to add a new, a new listing. All right, I'm going to say create from scratch and let's just start building. Okay, the very first thing is I need to put in my keywords. So I'm going to hit manually add keywords and I'm just going to paste all of those 114 phrases. Now there's a lot. I know I probably don't want to see like I already see another one that has that brand name. I'll just go ahead and delete that. But again, we're just kind of like fast forwarding this process. But whatever tools that you use to get all of your keywords that you want to rank for, go ahead and make sure that they are all here in your keyword bank and then hit the word add to bank. Ok, now it's going to show me all of these keywords plus their search volume, and now I'm pretty much ready to start going with my listing.   Bradley Sutton: So I'm going to go ahead and hit next and now you can see here that I've got all my 112 keyword phrases and I've got all of the one word roots that come from it, the two word roots, et cetera. So this is the important thing because, as you see, if I were just to write my listing right now, if I were to type in Halloween decor, okay, do you see what happened here on the left-hand side, Halloween decor as a phrase got checked off because I just put it in my listing, and then those individual words of Halloween and decor both got checked off, and so this is important, because this is how you're able to make your listing and know that you have used all of the keywords that you want. So, at the end of the day, my top keywords, I want to make sure I've got in the phrase form. There's no way I can get 112 phrases right into my listing in phrase form, but at least my top 10 or 15, plus every single one of these individual ones that and these are the words that make up these phrases here.   Bradley Sutton: Okay, so let's go ahead and go to the next step. You'll notice that this CPS is blank. Okay, so CPS is blank. This is very important. This is what tells me which of my keywords are the most important, because they're getting sales for most of my competitors. So what do I have to do? What do you guys have to do when you're making your listing like this? I have to go down here and I click keyword performance rank, okay, and now I have to hit add competitors. And so what competitors am I going to put in here? I'm going to put the same, the same competitors that I had in Cerebro, okay, now I want to. I want you guys to see what's going to happen when I do that. What's going to happen now is this competitor performance score, which actually is the same thing that was from Cerebro. If you look in Cerebro, the very last column in Cerebro, guys, is competitor performance score. This is not new to Helium 10. This has been in Helium 10 for years. This is what tells you the strength of the keywords compared to the competitors. All right, so this really helps you understand which are the keywords that most of the competitors are ranking for. Okay, and there, I did it there.   Bradley Sutton: Now everybody's got a score. All right, I got to take away this because it was still giving me a score, even though I only had one keyword in there. But look at these scores. All right, so this is the number one, uh, one, and sure enough, they're the number one seller. You look at that, guys. The number one seller happens to have the number one listing SEO score. All right, so this is based on all of the keywords, how many of the keywords they're using, how many in phrase form, and how they have it optimized throughout the listing. All right, right now, what is my score? My score is seventh out of seventh, I have a zero because I haven't put anything in my listing, all right, so now I can sort this, my keyword phrases, by competitor performance score. All right, now I can see some of the top keywords here. Coffin letter board is a 10 out of 10. Coffin letter board sign. All right, uh. Coffin decoration, coffin decor All right. So these are some of the keywords that I know I have to have in phrase for my listing. So what's the next step? I'm actually going to do this, where I'm going to get some help from AI to actually write some of this listing. And again, these steps, you guys should take at least 30 to 45 minutes. I'm going to try and do it in like less than five minutes here.   Bradley Sutton: So, right, here I want to start putting in some of the characteristics of this product. So let me go ahead and do that here. Let's go ahead and say hey, this is 17 inches by 10.5 inches. This product, our product, actually includes a special coffin-shaped um chalkboard as well, includes mini coffin shaped chalkboard. So I'm going to write that as a characteristic. That's something that's I chose so that I can differentiate it. So  that I can differentiate it from what's uh, what's going on. Let's uh with the competition. All right, what else do we see? Well, can I put includes wooden stand. Can hang on wall. What are some other places that I can get ideas on what to put here? Let me show you really quick. Let's say, I go into that top selling coffin letterboard right here I'm going to run Helium 10 review insights. Now, the first thing I'm just going to look, though. I want to look at the images. This is important for all of you guys. Look at the images of what people are leaving reviews for. Take a look here at some of these. This really gives you a good idea about what's going on, about how people are using this product. So you should do this for your competitors.   Bradley Sutton: Okay, so I'm going to look here at the review images that people have been doing. So now, look at this. I can see that people are using. Guys, this is a crazy product. Like I cannot believe how many people are buying this and how many people love this kind of product. It's kind of crazy. But you can see here this is something that I identified early on in the process that I didn't want to do. Do you guys see these letters and how you have to, like, twist them to take them off. So our product is going to have pre-cut and pre-sorted letters. So you know what? That's a good thing to put right here. So let's go ahead and do that. Includes 500 character or letters and spooky emojis. Letters are pre-cut and pre-sorted, all right. So that's like a definitely a key feature, because these images people are complaining about this how you know, like, like this is like impossible to one by one take away these letters. But now I can see, um, you know some, somebody did one for like a divorce party. It says 99 problems, but a husband ain't, one is one. So there there's a little like humor I can find to do here. I see some people have this for coffee shops. Some people, a lot of people, have it for looks like a wedding and birthday party. So there's all of a sudden, just in seconds here I'm getting tons of use cases and guess what, guys, we're going to talk about this later. This is also the kind of thing you should be looking at when you're trying to plan your images that you're going to take. Don't just look at the images that the other sellers made, but now go ahead and take some cues from what customers, actual customers of this product, are using this as use cases, you know, because there's tons of stuff I never would have thought about, you know, like I wouldn't have thought about a divorce party having it. Look at this. Somebody has says on their coffin letter board tips appreciated, normal is boring, stay weird. I mean, some of these are pretty ingenious, right. So this is some great ideas.   Bradley Sutton: Now the other thing that I can do is I want to run review insights here. Okay, and this is going to tell me what are some of the two, three, four word phrases that people are mentioning a lot in the reviews. All right, so the way you can do that is you click here on keywords once it loads all these reviews, and now I'm going to get some instant insight into what are people concerned about with this product and hit keywords, and then here we go. So look at this, a lot of people are saying so many letters. So maybe I want to see what are people saying when they say so many letters. Oh, it comes with so many letters. Perfect size comes with so many letters. So this one had 500 letters, and so this is. This is again something I should have looked at before, which I did, which is why I wanted to make sure mine had 500 letters, because I could see that a lot of people like that it had a lot of letters, right. But now I want to see what else that people are complaining about letters off, what is that? All right. I recommend use a sharp scissor to cut the letters off. This person says it's pretty easy to pull the letters up, but a lot of people are concerned about their having to pull the letters off or cut the letters off. That's why I made sure to call out in my listing that, hey, our letters are pre-cut and pre sorted, all right. I'm going to go ahead and analyze these and get even more points that I can put in my listing. All right, uh, let's say here good for parties and weddings, all right.   Bradley Sutton: So now let's go ahead and put our brand name, Manny's Mysterious Oddities, and I want to put that at the beginning of the title. What is the product name? I'm going to say coffin letter board sign. Now, this is really important because I saw here that two of my most important keywords are coffin letter board and coffin letter board sign. Now, if I just put coffin letter board sign in the title, that means I get two keywords for the price of one in my title and it's going to help me on my bang for my buck, for my SEO, my SEO title. All right, let's go ahead and pick a tone here. Let's pick humorous. This is a humorous product, right? Um and again, I? I should be filling this completely up with a whole bunch of information. I only filled up 200 out of 500 characters, but you guys get the uh, the picture. Now I'm just going to hit hey, write it, write it for me. But look at this in seconds. Now I have a title that says Manny's Mysterious Oddities coffin letter board sign. There it is. That was exactly I wanted to get two keywords in one. Beetlejuice decor, Halloween party decorations with mini coffin chalkboard. You see, the AI knew what I had in here 500 pre-cut letters and spooky emojis, perfect for parties and weddings. It got so much of my stuff just in the title. All we have done here is the title, and now I can see that once I say use suggestion, look at this. I was able to knock out a lot of my individual keywords and keywords, and that's basically how I do the rest of the listing, guys, what I'm going to do is just say, write it for me, and now AI is going to give me some suggestions. And then the point is I want to try and use up all of these individual keywords as much as possible so I can be indexed for all of these phrases. And then anything that has a high competitor performance score I definitely want to make sure that I have in phrase form in my listing.   Bradley Sutton: Okay, so that's how you make a listing. Again, this this took me 20 minutes to explain. It should probably take you an hour or two hours because you should be doing a lot more work on this. I would probably go in here and I'm going to just I'm not going to just go with the AI um, suggestion for it. The AI can really give me a good start with using the keywords and having like a certain theme or vibe to it. Like I, in this case, I put a, um, you know, humorous vibe, right, and now I just finished writing my listing up and I make sure that I use these uh keywords, uh, make sure that I use these keywords up. So this is important, guys. This is just a simple way of doing your listing.   Bradley Sutton: Now, speaking of SEO, what if English is not your first language and you're trying to write a listing here in Amazon USA or me? I don't speak perfect Japanese and I want to write a listing for Amazon Japan. I'm not going to use my own knowledge of Japanese to try and write that. No, you can write these prompts here in Listing Builder in whatever is your native tongue, and then you tell Helium 10, hey, this listing is going to be for Amazon Japan. This listing is going to be for Amazon Spain, and it will write the listing in a common language of where that marketplace is, and when I say common language, I mean, like common grammar. Right, it's not, like you know, Google Translate, which is all weird and everything right. So this is really a great way to make your listing and, like I said, I did this in 20 minutes and I almost have a better listing than most of these competitors already. Imagine how good I can make it if I just spent an hour or two hours, and this is the beauty about listing builder right. So that is how you can go from keyword research to actually making the structure of your listing and then making sure that you are optimized for it based on the score.   Bradley Sutton: One last thing I just want to quickly show you is, as you write your listing, you want to see how your score is going on, right? So here is my listing. Let's go ahead and rewrite these bullet points. My score is going to start changing as I start utilizing this, and the goal is hey, I want to be more optimized for the main keywords than my competitors. I want to be number one here, and so that's what you kind of shoot for when you are doing this. Image copy is just one aspect, right, it's just one aspect of the listing. The rest of it is what images? It's A+ Content. So I brought in some experts to talk a little bit about the photography aspect of things and some other listing optimization aspects. So let's go ahead and invite our first guest up here is Lailama Hasan. Welcome, how's it going?   Lailama: Hello, thank you for having me on. I'm just going to quickly introduce myself. I'm Lailama and I'm currently working as a Marketing Content Manager at Helium 10, where I plan and execute social media strategies. I have a background in Amazon selling and as a commercial photographer specializing mostly in Amazon brands. I've also consulted these brands on optimizing their listings with the goal to boost conversions optimizing their listings with the goal to boost conversions. So here I am, back on this webinar with Bradley talking some more about product photography, how to do it yourself, and then whether it makes sense for you to outsource to an agency or not. And if it does not make sense for you to outsource, then how do you go about conducting research for those images that you will create out of the pictures that you've taken?   Lailama: Now, a lot of people are overwhelmed by photography, right? A lot of people say I don't have the creativity to take my own pictures. Well, where do you begin? I just want to start by saying simplify, you know, let's break it down into the three image types that are required by Amazon. So every listing has three types of images and each image requires a different photography approach. So we'll go over each image separately to understand, like what is the goal of these images and how to go about photographing them? The first one is your main image. It's going to be a white background image. You need bright lighting. The main purpose is to bring people onto your listing, so you want to give them all the information possible about your product. Maybe there's a USP that you want to highlight, so make sure you put it in bright white lighting. People are able to see the color, the textures so they can make an informed decision and go on to your listing.   Lailama: And then the next one we have is infographic images. So these are usually the second type of image that you see in the middle. These are going to be like your hero shots. These are really functionality or USP focused shots. You might need to throw in some reference items for sizing or explain to people how to use these products. So that's the goal you want to keep in mind. And so take pictures from every angle. Explain how to use it. If it's not a simple product, what benefits and features it's going to give you. So you want to. When you're doing the photography, you want to keep these goals in mind.   Lailama: And then, lastly, you have the lifestyle images. So here you're selling your brand a lifestyle. You want to have models in it. You want to have the models that are representative of your target audience and so usually like have the product you know, show the use case of your product here. And then you know, just before when you're taking the pictures, you just want to, again, keep the goal of the image in mind. So once you have that, it's gonna make the task of photography a lot easier for you. Now the next question that comes up is okay, there's so many options out there. What equipment do I use? You just need a few items to get started. So I'll break it down again by image types just to make it easier for you to. You know, pick out your equipment. The first one for main image, you simply need a camera. This can be your phone. If you have a good quality camera or you, you could also rent out a DSLR and put it on auto setting. Again, there's no really preference here, but if you want a higher quality image, then I would recommend renting a DSLR camera. And then the second thing you want to have is two sets of lighting. These can be, you know, any lights around the house. Make sure that it has a white hue to it and then you can mix it with natural lighting. If you can photograph next to a window or outdoors, that's going to, you know, really bring up the quality of your image.   Lailama: I do recommend again renting out Godox lights just for that professional look, so that you can have a higher quality of image. The reason I talk about higher quality is because when you're uploading these images to Amazon and finally when people come to your listing, they're going to have that zoom in feature and so if your image quality is high, they'll be able to see the details. But if the quality isn't high enough, then your image can look a bit blurry. So just to like mitigate that risk, I would say rent out equipment, and just for the DSLR camera and for the two lights, the rentals might be $150 max if you're not going for anything new or fancy. But again, phone and regular lighting will do as well. Next, you, for your main image, you want a solid white background, so for that I'd recommend going for like a sturdy piece of paper. This could be a construction paper that you can find at any stationery shop, and then, if you have a bigger product, I would say, go for like a white cloth. The only reason I wouldn't take, you know, pick that as my first choice is because that'll need to be ironed out and that's more work. We want to make things easier, so, you know, a piece of paper might just work better.   Lailama: Okay, and now for infographics. Of course you're going to need the same camera, the same lights, but for backgrounds, you know, these are your hero shots, so you want to show your product and its functionality, and so these are going to be like really clear images of your product, but also looking aesthetic. So you want to pick out a background that might be like a solid color that is a part of your branding palette. Or you can pick out like a linen cloth, a wooden textured, you know, paper or something. So let's say it's a kitchen product like this example here. You can go for a marble background, a wooden texture, you know, switch it up whatever looks aesthetically pleasing but also like doesn't take away from your product. And if you don't want to go through any of this hassle, then you can also just take a picture on a white background, just like you would for your main image, and then overlay it on top of an artificial background with apps like Canva. And then, lastly, we have our lifestyle images. For this, you're really just gonna need your product put onto like a relevant lifestyle setup. So in this case, we have a yoga mat, and they've literally this could have literally been shot in your living room. Um, if you have like an outdoor sport product, let's say it's like um, soccer ball or something, then you might want to go to a park. So there's like lots of options for like free locations where you can do your photo shoot. And so, once you've done your photography, you figured it out.   Lailama: A lot of people are also thinking, okay, well, should I do it myself? Is it worth it, or should I simply outsource it? Like, what is it gonna? How do you decide that? How do you make that decision? I think it's all a matter of time, money and effort. So you know, these are all three of them are resources, because time and effort is also a big resource when you have to move fast, when you're launching your product, and it really just a lot of the times boils down to what your budget is. So if you have a low budget, then you're going to have to pay with more time and effort, and that's when you go the DIY photography route. But you know again, the question is okay, are there any other factors that I should consider outsourcing to an agency? Well, you are going to be a one man army versus the agency is a whole team. So you're going to need the expertise of a photographer, videographer if you're making a video a creative director, an Amazon specialist editor. You're going to need models. So it's a lot of moving pieces and this can take a lot of time and effort on your part, and maybe even some freelancers to put all this together. The agency has it all figured out. They have a blueprint, a process of how they're going to go about executing this project for you.   Lailama: So you can save time and effort. Um, by outsourcing. And that's why I say outsourcing isn't just a cost-saving measure, the cost being your time and effort. It's also a strategic move that empowers you to focus on your core competencies. And so, let's say you've decided against outsourcing to an agency. Well, you're going to have to create these photos into listing images. And how do you go about that? There's a lot of research that goes behind it to make sure that these images actually convert, because it's not just a matter of putting these images up. They need to resonate with the buyer, they need to give the buyer the information that they need in order to convert them from a view to a sale, right? So how do you turn these images photos, into listing images? Well, it's usually you know it is a time consuming process, but you can use something like it's one of my favorite tools. It's called Listing Analyzer by Helium 10. And they have this feature called media comparison where you get a holistic view of all of the pictures that your competitors have put up, and so you can really see, okay, what are the best ways that I can showcase the features of my product? And, you know, make a decision once you've looked at all the visuals and you pick out the maybe seven best images out of that. So, now that you know how to showcase each features, but which features should really take priority, and that's where your customer comes in.   Lailama: And so you're going to have to do review analysis, the Q&A analysis, go on to your, you know, trying to figure out like what are the burning questions, what are the common misconceptions within your product niche? So pick out your top 10 competitors five might be the best, five might be average and run Review Insights which is again a Helium 10 tool on each listing and dive into the one star, the two star, the three star rated reviews and find out what these misconceptions are and incorporate that information into your image. And then, another thing that I like to do when running research for images is outside marketplace analysis and this is your external inspiration. Um, that'll help you elevate your brand because you're looking at the best players in your niche, but outside of the Amazon marketplace. This could be Pinterest, you know, and you'll see, like a mood board, like this, or it could simply be a Google search and you go on to like the best companies that are in your niche. These companies will usually have strong branding, so you can really learn how to present your brand and its messaging from these top brands.   Lailama: And lastly, you can never predict what image will perform better, which one's going to resonate with your audience, and that is why I recommend doing split testing, so you can showcase the same information in multiple ways, but you'll never know which image is going to communicate your message the best, and this is especially true for main images like here you know it's the same dog leash, but is it better to use a model? Is it better to use to showcase your variations? If yes, then do you show all of them in one picture or do you focus on the main variation? So these are the questions you'll have answered through a split test. I really like using Helium 10's audience, which will allow you to split test your images and make that decision pre-launch, which is the biggest advantage here. So run the split test and see which one will convert the best.   Bradley Sutton: All right, let's go ahead and go into our next speaker, who's going to talk a little bit about something. Some other aspects that you need to be thinking about when you're doing your listing optimization. All right, well, take it away, Tayyaba.   Tayyaba: Sure. Well, hi guys, how's it all going? I am Tayyaba Hasan and I'm going to be talking about the creatives and the image aspect of Listing Optimization. And we're a Canadian company, so that is optimization with an S I'm going to be giving you some insight into how we created the listing images for the coffin letter board. I'll discuss a little bit about our approach and get into the process and maybe you can take some tips and tricks and apply it for your own business.   Tayyaba: So a little bit more about myself. So I work as a Creative Director. I worked as a Creative Director at AMZ One Step and now I work as a Project Manager. So we work with Amazon sellers to scale their business with data-driven creatives that convert, and we do all things creative. So images storefront everything in between.   Tayyaba: Now I do want to talk a little bit about our process and kind of how we approach creating some images and these creatives that convert. So there's a few steps, four steps that we typically take. So the first one, of course, is that research. Lailama and Bradley went into some good detail about how to do that research, but the main part, the main takeaway, is really just to identify the unique features and benefits of your product. This can be done using all of the tools and the strategies that were discussed. And then the next plan. The next step would be just to create that plan. So gather all of your ideas together and put yourself in the shopper's mind and really create like a storyboard outline for the images. This is really just a fine balance of knowing you know what sets my product apart, what questions would the shopper have, and then how can we just show the two visually. Now, after that's all done and you've got a really good idea of what you want each of the images to kind of portray and what the text is gonna say, you're gonna get into production. So, of course, that is just the shooting and executing the design. Whether you do that yourself or you outsource it to an agency, that's up to you. And the fourth step would, of course, be that optimization. So Lailama did touch a little bit on A-B testing. So if your creatives are done by a professional agency, ideally there's less chance of misrepresentation and negative reviews, but every so years, in any case, if you decide to upgrade your product, change something about the features, improve it, you're going to need to update the creatives, and a few years. Even if you don't update your product, a few years will give you enough data to really spot any trends in your customer reviews and adjust accordingly.   Tayyaba: The research aspect, like I mentioned, is pretty much dependent on understanding the difference between a feature and a benefit. So a feature is very straightforward it's that specific attribute or the functionality of the product. But the benefit is actually the value that that feature is going to offer the customer. This is the part where we're going to address their needs or, you know, solve a problem. We're going to tell them that this is how this product is going to optimize their life in any way, or how it can play a role. So how does this apply to that coffin letter board? Well, when Bradley came to us, he let us know that there was a very key feature and that, of course, was that 500 plus, you know, pre-cut and sorted letters. That's an amazing feature, but the benefit to the customer is really what you want to relay. So what is the benefit? It's going to be the fact that it's that hassle-free. It's that hassle-free message creating and you have uniform and polished letters every time, as opposed to where you had to cut them. It saves you time and, of course, it reduces mess.   Tayyaba: So first we sort of came up with the image concept to tackle the image that's going to portray this feature. So we wanted to show the polished look of the pre-cut letters with someone using our product and maybe show that versus a competitor. We want to show this in a way where it shows also a common use. So in this case, the header very straightforward. You can even ask ChatGPT give me a header for an image like this, give me 10 headers and they'll do that. So pre-cut for hassle free decorating very straightforward, and some icons or text that really are going to drive the benefit home is the fact that there is a uniform and a polished look and it's mess free. And then we also have to consider the common uses. So, if you recall, one common use was that these coffin letter boards are used in Halloween themed parties, kind of like a welcome board with a punny or a clever text. So this was sort of a screenshot and we just sort of analyzed all of the images of the competitors so we can see if you were to zoom in, you'd be able to see that a lot of them have that punny text and a lot of them you can see actually have they're not pre-cut, they're all just you've got to cut those letters out. So these images that you see in between, that's all showing you the letters that don't arrive pre-cut.   Tayyaba: So the common uses we want to consider this and then apply that to our products. So we want to look at these trends. We see that there's, you know, messages written on the board. They're all sort of a play on words. It's either Gothic or Halloween themed. We see the we want to show how the polished look of the pre-cut letters is better than, as opposed to just the mess of dealing with competitor products which are not pre-cut. And then we sort of applied that into a rough kind of a sketch. So we created a plan. Now this plan, we knew that we wanted to use the relevant setting right. So this is sort of like a Halloween gothic themed party. We know that we want to showcase the coffin letter with something punny, and so I just wanted to chatGPT and said you know, give me a quirky, punny message for a Halloween party letter board. And then I know that I wanted to showcase the competitor image as well. So if, ideally, you can order the product of the competitors, but if not, you can use some Photoshop magic to manipulate it. So this is the actual image that we came up with in the end, so to give you a little bit of an idea. So, tying all of those together, this is a Halloween theme. The chatGPT said something very cute like eat, drink and be scary. So we let our production team know to write that message on the board.   Tayyaba: And this is actually white background photography. So, just for the sake of simplicity, I'm just showing you what it looks like when you do white background photography and you Photoshop that into a Halloween sort of a background and it's not really, you know, necessary. You could recreate this in a real life setting. You could get the props, but this is just a more budget friendly option. So if you look at the text, it really drives that point home and we were not actually able to order the competitor product. So what we did was we just took a close up of the existing one and if you look at that. It's a bit torn, which is pretty accurate as to how it might look when you know when you're removing it yourself from a competitor product. So we just sort of fake the fact that the competitor's product is not nearly as polished or uniform as ours is, and then those icons, like we mentioned, really drive that point home. So uniform and polished look and mess free. So that's what that image looked like. Tayyaba: Now it's not all about just the features and the benefits and manipulating the visuals. Sometimes it can be just a lot more simple, and so you have to put yourself in the headspace of a shopper. You know what questions would the shopper have, and so the other approach is just to sort of tackle, tackle, that kind of um question. So Bradley did mention that while most of the competitors are selling coffin letter boards with a stand um, you know, for for a niche like this there's not that many like bundled items. So maybe the shopper is just a little bit going to be curious as to what exactly am I getting? I see there's a letter, I see there's a smaller chopper, what does this mean? And so we want to just answer that question for them. You know exactly how big is each item? How much space is it going to take up in my home, especially the fact that these are bundled items and one is bigger, one is smaller? So the review insights tool is a pretty good way just to get like an idea as to exactly what questions do they have.   Tayyaba: If you don't have the access to look at all of these you know three thousand reviews, two hundred and seventy nine reviews, nine thousand reviews and just really analyze them and look for the trends. That's where AI comes in, so you can use the review insights tool, export all of those, copy the Excel sheet into ChatGPT and ask it to analyze the questions so you can say something as simple as, like you know, look at the negative reviews, what trends do you see? What are customers complaining about? Where does this product fall short of expectations? And that's really where you want to address something. Or you could take a much more sort of simpler approach and even just look at the very quickly, just look at the tags. So this is actually something that I saw off of the competitors. So one thing that they were talking about was sizing. Now there are overall positive reviews, but if you look at what I've highlighted here, Amazon has sort of summarized that it fits. You know it's good, but it's larger than they thought that it would be. So that is something you know you could ignore it because it's such a positive overall review 57 positive and five negative but it's really important to just catch that and then use that to your advantage.   Tayyaba: So when we look at the competitor images and I look at the way that they've approached the dimensions image, it's pretty easy to see why there might be confusion. You know, yes, the numbers are right there. In fact, some of them even go into two decimal places. But the reality is shoppers are not going to pull out a measuring tape and you can't really rely on that. So I'm going to give you a little bit of insight into how we approach creating the dimensions image and how we can went about maybe mitigating these negative reviews. So, instead of just giving them the numbers, what we did was we threw in hands in there and so immediately you can sort of picture just how big the bigger one is and how big the smaller one is. And hopefully I can already imagine that shoppers without an image like this and just going back and you know if we should show the chalkboard like this, I can imagine already negative reviews saying you know, the chalkboard is way too small, it's a lot smaller than I expected. Which it is it's about? You know, three inches wide and that's about the length of my pinky. So what this does is it really gives them the idea of they can picture it basically in their home. So this is just one way that we approach creating images to avoid negative reviews. And that brings me to the end of my presentation. I hope this has provided you guys with a little bit of insight and thank you guys so much.   Bradley Sutton: Tayyaba for you. If anybody wants to reach out to you for more information or to get more help or to utilize your services, like I contracted you guys out to do this coffin letter board, how can they find you on the interwebs out there?   Tayyaba: Absolutely amzonestep.com, and if you've got any inquiries, any sort of creatives that you'd like to get done, feel free to reach out.   Bradley Sutton: Okay, and then also you can. If some of you have different plans, I suggest contacting them through hubhelium10.com and look for AMZOneStep, because they sometimes give different coupons for different members out there as well. All right, guys. That's all the time we have for today. Thanks for staying here to the end. Thank you to Leilama and Tayyaba. We will see you later next month with another new topic that's going to be in Freedom Ticket. Actually, next week it's all going to be about TikTok Shop. So look out for an invite for special training on TikTok shop and until then, we'll see you guys later. Bye-bye now.
6/15/202444 minutes, 4 seconds
Episode Artwork

#569 - How To Scale Your Amazon Business

Join us for an insightful episode where we sit down with Christi Michelle, an expert in scaling Amazon businesses and the founder of The COO Integrator. Christi shares her fascinating journey from running an Amazon brand management agency to becoming a fractional Chief Operating Officer. Discover how she blends visionary ideas with tactical strategies, and hear about her comprehensive competitive analysis of 25 brand management agencies, revealing the importance of understanding unique value propositions. Christi's wealth of experience provides valuable lessons for e-commerce entrepreneurs looking to scale their businesses effectively. In another segment, we explore key strategies for measuring business health and scaling effectively. Learn how to assess your business's performance through crucial data metrics like PPC statistics and P&L statements. Understand the significance of evaluating employee performance and fitting within your organization. We also discuss Tony Robbins' 10 life cycle stages and their relevance in identifying your business's current strengths and weaknesses. Practical tools such as the EOS organizational checkup and core values exercises are highlighted to help you align your company's direction and goals for balanced growth. Finally, we tackle the challenges of managing remote teams and maintaining productivity in the e-commerce world. Discover strategies for fostering a strong company culture and maintaining relationships. Learn the importance of holding productive meetings that drive progress without creating unnecessary busy work. Additionally, Christi shares her transformative experience at a two-week water fasting retreat in Costa Rica, offering insights into personal growth through struggle and simplicity. Whether you're looking to scale your business or find balance in your entrepreneurial journey, this episode is packed with actionable advice and inspiration. In episode 569 of the Serious Sellers Podcast, Bradley and Christi discuss: 00:00 - Scaling Amazon Businesses With Expert Guidance 04:34 - Brand Management for Major Brands 08:03 - Business Evolution and Maturity Stages 09:32 - Measuring Business Health and Scaling 14:27 - Navigating Amazon's Rising Costs and Fees 20:11 - Key Role of HR in Business 21:03 - Effective Remote Business Operation 23:52 - Creating Constructive Meetings for Company Culture 25:33 - Costa Rica Spiritual Retreat Experience 29:20 - Business Growth and Simplification ► Instagram: instagram.com/serioussellerspodcast ► Free Amazon Seller Chrome Extension: https://h10.me/extension ► Sign Up For Helium 10: https://h10.me/signup  (Use SSP10 To Save 10% For Life) ► Learn How To Sell on Amazon: https://h10.me/ft ► Watch The Podcasts On YouTube: youtube.com/@Helium10/videos Transcript Bradley Sutton: So many Amazon sellers don't treat their Amazon businesses like a real business. So, we brought on somebody today who's an expert in this and she's helped countless number of businesses really scale up, and there's going to be great points that you're going to be able to glean from this as well. How cool is that? Pretty cool, I think. What was your gross sales yesterday, last week, last year? More importantly, what are your profits after all your cost of selling on Amazon? Did you pay any storage charges to Amazon? How much did you spend on PPC? Find out these key metrics and more by using the Helium 10 tool Profits. For more information, go to h10.me/profits. Hello everybody, welcome to another episode of the Serious Sellers Podcast by Helium 10. I'm your host, Bradley Sutton, and this is the show. That's a completely BS-free, unscripted and unrehearsed organic conversation about serious strategies for serious sellers of any level in the e-commerce world. And I'm still here recording in Spain, Madrid, Spain. I'm here at the Avosk office and we are here with somebody who has not been on the podcast in like two, maybe even three years, over three years Christy in the house. How's it going? Christi Michelle: Hi, doing well. How are you? Bradley Sutton: I'm doing just ducky. I recorded Leo earlier today, but he did his presentation already, so I was able to ask him some stuff on it. But I don't know what you're going to talk about yet, so I'll ask you that in a little bit. But since it's been so long since you've been on the podcast, what in the world have you been up to? Christi Michelle: I think the last time I was on I was running an Amazon brand management agency, and so that was the first one that I was running at the time. And after that we merged, slash, sold to a larger agency where I was the head of operations as well. We had about 100 clients, about 90-ish employees, so really kind of scaled up, which turns out that's kind of my forte, and I was there for a little while and then I left and apparently, I just can't get enough of the agency world. So, for the last about two and a half years I've been running what's my new agency? The COO Integrator, and so I am a fractional chief operating officer. So, it's that second in command. It's the one that says, OK, here's the big vision of what the visionary wants, the CEO wants, and OK, now how do we turn that into tactical strategies that we can, implement and get everybody rowing in the same direction? For so I do that. Bradley Sutton: Hold on. So, you're the CEO of this company or you're, like, a CEO of many companies. Christi Michelle: I'm the CEO of my company, my agency, but I play the role of the COO, which actually quite works for me because I'm a good blend of both the visionary and also the integrator. I like taking the really big concepts. That's a lot of fun for me, but I need to distill it down and make it very practical, set some goals around it, and I use a lot of my business strategies to make sure everything gets executed. So, it's both. Bradley Sutton: Went out to dinner last night and I remember you Vincenzo was there and you found out he worked at a PPC agency and you're like, oh man, a couple of years ago I did I looked into like 25 PPC agencies was it? Christi Michelle: It was a brand management agency. So, I was trying to do a competitive analysis. I wanted to understand. So, one of the things that I think a lot of companies, especially when they're getting started or they're so kind of single focused you don't realize that they don't understand their unique value proposition. And so, what makes you different? Why, if I were looking at two different agencies, why would I choose yours over someone else? And most folks, unfortunately, they're oh, it's you know, we've got great customer support or we're so good with our clients, and it's very generic and they all kind of say the same thing. And so, I really wanted to understand okay, well, who are my competitors in the space? And I find it to be a very non-competitive space in the sense that we're all very friendly, it's very open. What I love about the e-commerce space is that it has kind of that good feel to it as an industry personality. But theoretically, these are my competitors and I wanted to see, well, okay, what are they offering? What do they charge, what are their contract terms? So, I really, I called dozens of them and I just said, hey, this is what I'm doing. I'm just I called dozens of them and I just said, hey, this is what I'm doing, I'm just what's unique about you? I just want to know these different things. So, it was a competitive analysis. It was just sort of a landscape. Bradley Sutton: And you know, obviously you don't have to mention any names, but what was just some things that stuck out to you about, I don't know, maybe price point or something that you saw was a hole in the industry or something that everybody had, or what were some of your big takeaways, I guess, like I'm asking. Christi Michelle: You know that most companies actually did have something that was quite unique. I would say more than half the companies. They would tell me something and I'm like I haven't heard that before. That's really unique, like that is. Do you know that as unique to you? So, in a way I was kind of helping them with their marketing like go ahead and highlight that. So, some folks you know they would specialize in major brands like big Fortune 100 company kind of brands. That's not typically what an Amazon brand management agency, but if you think about it those are. Most of those companies are kind of dinosaurs so they don't know how to kind of pivot and get online. So that was a unique one. A lot of companies had different contract terms but most of them were a flat fee plus once you had a certain point. Then we take a percentage. Unique ones were maybe it was a contract they just go month to month, and other ones they said we just went two years because we're going to invest with you. So really, I think knowing what those are, what your differentiators are and what's important to you, can help you, I guess, decide what type of clients, your ideal client, who you want to go after. Some clients are just like I just want to test this out, is this going to be good? So, they would probably want to go with an agency that has a lower fee and month to month contracts. But other ones who want to deep dive, they know they're going to invest in this, they know where they want to go build that partnership. So, it helps, you kind of weed out the clients that you do want and get rid of the ones that you don't. So, I don't know what really stood out. There was a lot. Bradley Sutton: Okay, now let's just flip the script a little bit. I'm an Amazon seller, I'm new or I'm big, I'm a seven-figure seller, eight-figure seller? Who is the persona or what type of person should be looking for a brand management agency as opposed to you know what? You probably should just try and handle things on your own at your stage. Christi Michelle: That's a loaded question. I would say that it actually depends on your personality type. So, there are people who want to understand there's a level of control that says I want to bring all of this in house, I want to bring in an expert who is a good PPC expert, someone who does graphic design. I want it to be so customized because it's my business. If that is your personality type, you probably want to build in house. But if it's not and you really just want kind of the simple life, you can find a partner partnering with an agency that has all of that already in-house. I would go that route. But it really depends on how you want to run your business in general. So, it's more of a personal decision on your lifestyle. With that there is an influx point, especially because, like I said, a lot of agencies will have sort of a flat fee to start with for the first 90 days or whatever, and they get to a point and they say, okay, wait, we expect to build traction at this point. Christi Michelle: So, from that we want to, once we hit this threshold, we want to flip and we want to take a percentage of sales. Well, that's fantastic, especially if they're doing a really good job. But if you go from doing, 50,000 in sales and then a hundred thousand in sales and then 500,000 in sales, and suddenly you’re doing millions in sales that you know taking 5% or whatever that is, at some point you're going to be paying the agency hundreds of thousands of dollars that it makes more sense than to just bring it in house. So, there is a scaling point that I would say unless you're super comfortable and you just love working with them and you don't care to give away that percentage as long as you don't have to think about it, because clearly, they've done a good job, then at some point you would probably want to bring it in house. Bradley Sutton: Okay, all right. Now I think, looking now I remember looking at the title of your talk today like wasn't one thing about helping people scale, all right, so we have listeners of this podcast, from newer sellers all the way to maybe seven, eight figure sellers. What are some? I know a lot of the stuff you talk about is targeted, you know, depending on their exact persona, but maybe there's some general things that you could, some tips that you can give out about, because I think everybody wants to scale, unless they're just like trying to do this in their hobby. That hey, I'm very happy at my level of the rest of my life. My, my day job is this. That's probably like 3% of people. I think 97% wants to scale. So, what are some tips you can give? Christi Michelle: It's very customized because it depends on where your maturity of your company is. And so, I use the word maturity and the evolution of your business because most people say, well, I'm a million-dollar company or I'm a $5 million company or I'm a $40 million company, that really doesn't matter, because I've had clients that are 40 million, I've had clients that are 2 million and they're at the same stage. They experienced the same influx of issues. So, I like to identify them. So, Tony Robbins has a really good. He has a really good model that's called the evolutionary 10 stages of your business and it starts literally from like a child. It's like birth. You have infancy, you have toddler, teenager, young adult, and then you're in your prime and then eventually, at some point things always kind of deteriorate and you kind of go down that path. So, I like for people to be able to identify where they are. That helps them understand what their bottlenecks are. Able to identify where they are. That helps them understand what their bottlenecks are. So, one tip would be figure out where do you stand like, where is your evolution of your company and what is it going to take for you to go from a teenager to a young adult, or a young adult to get to you when you're in your prime. So, understanding that about yourself. Another thing that I would say is most companies, you're just very focused. Most people don't understand this. If you didn't get an MBA, you don't understand all the facets of business, right? They think, well, I've got a product and I've got a or a service. This is what I'm doing. Understand that if you want to scale, you kind of need to do it. The best way to do it is very, is as balanced as possible, and so another exercise that I do is based off of EOS, which is the Entrepreneur Operating System. They have a model. So, this is that's a business blueprint. Christi Michelle: Every company should be working from a business blueprint, and so, if you can do that, there's a several questions that kind of prompt you well, how well are you in each of these categories of your business? So, you can say, okay, well, how is my data measurables Like? Do I know what I'm measuring? Do I know what my PPC statistics are? Do I know what my P&L looks like? Do I know what my turn rate is? Do I know? There's lots of things to know. So, understanding that category, understanding your people. Do I have the right people? Have I hired you know? Are they doing the best that they can? So, there's lots of different ways that you can measure the health of your business. You can take it as a 20-point questionnaire. You can go to EOS I think it's called; I don't know. You can download it for free. In five minutes, you can kind of figure out sort of like a general health of your business. That will also tell you OKAY, here are the areas that I'm unbalanced. These are my strengths and these are my weaknesses. But as you want to scale, you want to scale as balanced as possible. Also, understanding different personality types. You start off as the visionary of your company and different visionaries and I kind of have had several different buckets that I would put them in. But there's different visionaries, create different problems, create different solutions and problems in their companies. So, you get the ones that are. Christi Michelle: They're just very what is it Gregarious? Like, very like outgoing and big and let's try all the things, and they don't have a big sense of risk. They don't have a correct sense of risk. They go above and beyond and that's really fun. They're usually very grateful. They're a lot of fun to work with, but there's very little. The opposite side of that is they don't come with a lot of accountabilities they just trust you. Yeah, go do the thing. I like you. You seem smart, let's go. And they won’t’ve that type of leader. Understand what your strengths are and also understand what your weaknesses are. Right, because that can create a lot of uncertainty in your employees, and a lot of employees love you, but they just feel like they're constantly concerned about what's happening with their job. So, I could go down a whole rabbit hole on different personality types, but those are the things is understood who you are, what you bring to the company and kind of the health of the business overall. I mean there's tons of tools out there that in five minutes. I love doing workshops because I want people to learn about themselves, where they stand relative to who they are, what they bring to the table and you know what they're going to need to balance them, because everybody has strengths and weaknesses. Bradley Sutton: Now I'm looking here. I'm guessing this is part of, like, your workshops that you're going to be doing, Christi Michelle: Yes. Bradley Sutton: Or is this a handout that people are going to have? Christi Michelle: Yes. Okay, very tactical hands-on. Bradley Sutton: Maybe you can describe some of this so that people can maybe do this at home even without you. At least get started on this framework here. Christi Michelle: Sure, well, I mean, I kind of did mention a little bit, so I would look up Tony Robbins. So, business mastery he has the 10 life cycle stages of your evolution of your business. So, if you can look that up, he kind of gives a definition, as I said earlier. So, you have birth, you have infancy, you have the toddler, you have the teenager, you have the young adult. What are those? What are the pros and cons of each one of those? So go look that up and if you could do that, read there, help yourself identify. Once you identify, let's say, you figure out that you're in a teenage stage. That's a very exciting stage. It's also one of the most dangerous stages and a lot of people get stuck there, a lot of visionaries get stuck there, and so I won't have time to go into detail about it. But if you are able to identify yeah, that kind of sounds like where I am going ahead and look at what the next stage is after that. What is it going to take for me? So, the teenager stage I think it's usually fun and reckless, right? Teenagers? I think of them as driving 100 miles an hour down the highway that they've got their sports car because cash flow at that point is less of an issue. But they say yes to everything and they don't know how to say no. Everything looks like an opportunity, so they pull resources from everywhere. It's very unfocused. So, I think about that teenager driving 100 miles an hour down the highway. If they take one wrong turn, they could seriously wound the business. They don't really recognize that. There's a sense of overconfidence with that. So, if you look that some of those are usually the signature problems that you have as a teenager, then look and see okay, well, what is it going to take to get to be a young adult? And I kind of like quote that as a young adult would be a rebirth. You grow up right. You're like okay, we have to have some responsibility. We're going to bring in some professional staff at this point. We're going to so anyway. So really good way. Christi Michelle: Another thing that I have here, as I said, sort of this grading. I turn it into sort of a wheel exercise so you can kind of self-grade. And it's the EOS, I think it's organizational checkup. Go there, it's 20 questions, it's Likert scale one through 10. Grade yourself. You can share that with all the other people in your company, so that you get a collective grading for everyone. And it comes back and it says okay, well, your score is a 57 out of a hundred. Okay, well, what areas do we need to work on? So, it will quickly highlight for you some of those pieces. But I core values exercise, creating your one page, your business blueprint. Who are we? Where are we going? Why are we doing what we do? What makes us unique? What's our ideal client? Really, building on a business blueprint? Because when you look at going back to the stages, if you look at the when you're in your prime, this is like, this is like Apple. I mean, there's just, there's a. You just know that they come out with excellence at all times. Right, and you can be in your prime for decades. You can be in a prime for a long time. When you understand what that looks like, you want to strive to get to those levels of like. What's the pros of each one of those? So, self-education. Bradley Sutton: Taking it back to, I think, something that is at the top of mind of a lot of Amazon sellers nowadays. You know you started selling on Amazon and kind of like the glory days where you could just like fall into making tons of money by accident, not even knowing anything. You're doing right Nowadays I'm sure you talked about this with Amazon sellers. I think I see so much more fear and anxiety over all the new fees that Amazon has. You know rising PPC costs, rising logistics, this and that and now many people are stressing about how I mean not only just how to scale, but just how to stay afloat. And so, some of your successful people you talk to what are their characteristics or what are they doing to? Because it's still very viable to make money on Amazon. So, what are the successful people? How are they navigating all of these fees and increased costs? Christi Michelle: Well, first of all, they're treating it the successful ones are treating it like a holistic business. It's not just I'm going to throw up a product, make some money and then maybe I figure out a little bit of PPC with that right. There is an evolution to actually truly building something like a business, and so I say that in tandem. When I think of truly building a business, it's you have to look at all aspects, so it's not just the single focus of what are my resources within the Amazon or e-commerce space. So, for example, so when we talk about fees, one of my clients you know is has nothing to do with this, but it overlaps he gets the best rates on UPS and FedEx that you can imagine. Okay, well, maybe we can't. If you're doing FBA, then you can't necessarily use those right, because you're not going to get better fees. But if you are diversifying and if you are going, if you want to do FBM or if you want to do Shopify and you want to go to other places, those fees you can offset them by getting unbelievable discounts for those and you can kind of offset the cost of what Amazon is rising by decreasing the costs of other platforms in your Shopify store, let's say. So, that requires that you step out that you would not know that this person, this type of service exists, because it's not really talked about here, because most people go FBA if they're going to be selling on Amazon. But being resourceful and looking at just look at the problem plainly Okay, amazon fees are going up. Christi Michelle: What is my? If you look at your balance sheet, if you look at your P&L and you say these are all the costs that are associated with my business, what are ways that I can offset each one of these? Like I look at it, I like put my little MacGyver hat on and I'm like, okay, what else can I do? What else can I bring to the table? What else is working in completely different industries? What are they doing that I can kind of take and then bring that over into my space? So, I say two things. They treat it like a business, like it's holistic, it's not. I'm not just selling a product. They know that they're building a brand, they know that they're trying to. And if they try, if they know in two years they've got their vision, two or three years we want to sell for X amount, okay, well, you start working with folks, that will help you kind of get you set up for a sale. We'll do that a year and a half in advance. There's some brilliant tactics for how you can set for decisions you need to make today that 18 months from now will greatly pay off so that you can find the right buyer. So, these are all different ways that are just it's not just looking at selling a company or your business, it's what are all the resources that you're going to need in the future. So, thinking in advance, treating it like a business and looking for resources outside of space. Bradley Sutton: I think what you said is important, because there's a lot of Amazon sellers, I would say that this is probably the first business they've run. Maybe they came from the corporate world or they came from working a nine to five and so they don't have that experience. And there's a tendency, it's because it's such a different beast, on one hand, where it's like, oh no, it's not a real business, but then all of a sudden, they're like wait, this is a business doing seven figures a year. In your experience, when you first talk to people like that, what are they doing wrong? As far as not treating it like a business, like what's the most common things that you're like, okay, we got to get this fixed right away, okay. Christi Michelle: Okay, I'm going to answer this in sort of an evolutionary piece. So, most people, when they start a business, it's just you in your basement or wherever, and you're selling either your product or service, but probably your product, right, if you're not going to do an agency style and you figure that out. So, you go through that and it's just you, it's you're trying to do everything, and then you kind of get that going and then maybe you hire a customer service person or maybe you hire someone to help you out with the day-to-day operations. Okay, let's bump up the sales, let's do the marketing, let's get in some PPC how else can I get a lot more sales? So, then you switch your focus next to the department I'm going to put that in air quotes the department of marketing and sales, and you try to figure out let's pour some gas on this. We've got your product and service. Then you have your marketing and sales, okay. So finally, then we've got that flowing, we've got that going, we know what we're doing there. Oh crap, I'm making a lot of money. Now, what's my P&L look like? What's my balance sheet look like? What does my profit look like? What is margins? What is this about? So, then you start taking okay, do I have the right people? Okay, am I like doing the best that I can, and do I have a high turnover? So, then it gets to HR. So, my answer is actually HR. Christi Michelle: People ignore HR because in the evolution, it's the last, it's, we call it like crisis by management by crisis. Most, every one of those stages you're saying what's the biggest crisis that I need to focus on? So, HR doesn't feel like it's crisis, but it actually is like the underpinning of everything. So, most people ignore HR. So, one of the very first things that I do when I come in is I say what do our people? What does it look like? Do we have the right staff? Do you trust your people? Because a lot of times they'll hire someone but they don't trust them and so then they micromanage them and they never let them flourish. And then you have it keeps growing and growing and growing. And then you have this owner who now has like 15 employees. They've technically become successful, but they've got golden handcuffs because they can't leave, because they haven't figured out how to actually delegate and trust. That is one example. So, when I come in, the first thing I do is. I say what does HR look like? Because usually and, by the way, the whole time, whether you're doing the you're, you're doing your product surface, your operations, your marketing sales, your finance, you're still hiring people along the way. But that always tends to fall on the visionary, which most people didn't go to HR school. They don't know how to interview, they don't know how to hire the right people, they don't know how to manage and make sure that they're setting those expectations. Christi Michelle: So, I tend to think of that as I will come in first. I'll look at HR, because I know that that's one of the number one thing that's going to make or break a company. But it feels like it's the underpinning. It doesn't feel like it because it's not so much a big crisis loud thing usually, but that's the underpinning and it always falls on the visionary and that's not necessarily going to be their forte. So, if I can teach them how to do that and we can kind of clean house and get the right people in the right place and get the systems and all of that, that's typically what I see. Bradley Sutton: All right Now. You and I were just talking to elevator about. How Helium 10 are remote company. I would say nowadays most Amazon businesses as they scale and become a real business, it's almost all remote. Either they're hiring people within the United States remotely or in most cases hiring people from other countries, be it Philippines, Pakistan, et cetera. What are some things that Amazon, business owners can do to. In a remote lifestyle where they can just make sure, hey, everybody's on task. Like Helium 10, we started as an in-office company so it was easy for us to know like oh wait, this person is slipping when we run remote or like we know what. But, Amazon sellers from day one. They're kind of a remote company. So, how do they structure it to make sure that it's still operating as a well-oiled machine, even though maybe they've never even met some of their employees in person? Christi Michelle: Sure. I mean, I think it's a really good question. I think there’s a lot of challenges the people have because it’s not a natural state if you think about humans and how it all interactive with each other coming from villages that living, but this is very new thing. Covid did not help but it really exacerbated the fact that we so I would say the same way that you would handle a social situation if you moved away from your friends and family you, it takes effort. You actually have to put in conscious effort to reach out and create a relationship with. You can't like, if you moved away and you have all of your best friends and your family that lives back in your hometown, you no longer it's not. You have to actually put in the energy and effort to ask them how they're doing, see what they're up to, have constructive conversations. When you're in person, you just don't really think about it. You kind of take it for granted. You're like, oh, I'll just go bump into you at the water cooler. Hey, just pop in my office. That kind of thing. It's so much, it happens kind of effortlessly. It takes effort to actually maintain relationships and you have to build. You kind of have to rebuild your social skills. So, I would say that, from a culture perspective, is that you need to figure out what that looks like. So, I have a lot of clients where we'll implement. Just, you know, we do like happy hour Fridays where everybody, at three o'clock or four o'clock, we're like hey, let's all get on here, we’ll share, we’ll do trivia, they’ll do things. So, there's lots of things you can do from a culture perspective. Christi Michelle: But in terms of just operations, of business, cadence of meetings and I say that carefully because I think a lot of people roll their eyes, I have a lot of meetings, lot of meetings. A lot of people roll their eyes at me because they hate meetings. Most people hate meetings because they're not productive meetings. I, like I said, I am a hands-on, tactical person. I don't want homework after a meeting. Don't make me do anything. As soon as we're over the phone, I'm done, I did my job. So, the moment that I get on meetings, I know what we're working at, I know what we're trying to solve and if it's, we don't know the answer. I'm building a matrix. I'm building, we're typing it out, we're having a constructive conversation and leading it. I'm constantly monitoring people to say okay, what are we trying to solve? You have this question how can you get our audience to solve? What do you need to move forward? So being you just have to be more cognizant about having constructive meetings. So, it's a lot more communication in that sense. But that more communication does not need to be waste of time. Christi Michelle: I think a lot of people have that sort of this equals that? Not true at all. Just have productive. So, learn how to have. So, I had to summarize one. Decide how you want the culture of the company to be and put an effort to make sure that that happens, that you are making building relationships again, whether that's a happy hour, you guys do like a weekly, like shout outs or something like that. And then the second one is learn how to have productive meetings. Learn how to have constructive meetings where you actually get work done during the meeting while everyone's together. They can put in their input if that is needed. Learn how to have constructive meetings that you don't have to have a lot of busy work on the other side and then you guys are learning and building and growing together, which just creates more camaraderie. Bradley Sutton: Awesome, awesome, all right, any last words of wisdom like a message you want to get out to Amazon sellers around the world here, what can you help them with? Like I sometimes call this like a 60 second strategy, but I'm not going to tie you down to a certain time, but just anything you want to close this out with. Christi Michelle: Oh goodness, I mean I think I've harped on the fact that treat it like it's a business. Truly, if you're not working on a business blueprint, you know EOS is a good one, it's. It's a limited. It's very, very good, but it's limited. There's, you have system and soul. There's lots of different ones. Get like, find, a business blueprint to work from, because most people don't understand strategic frameworks and it's not anybody's fault If you didn't go get an MBA, if you didn't know this, but you have the entrepreneurial spirit. You do have to educate yourself on how to run a business. So, treat it like it's a business, that there are all different components and aspects to it and I think that you will find that scaling and growing and educating you will be more balanced and less stress and you'll have less of those true deep pitfalls that I see a lot of people having. Bradley Sutton: All right, one more thing. At dinner last night I kind of got a little bit of this. But Boyan was telling me you went to Costa Rica and you didn't eat food for like two weeks or something. So, tell me a little bit about what prompt cause? You never. there are some people out there who are I'm not trying to throw anybody under the bus, but like the whole very spiritual and touchy, feely and yoga every morning, and let me go find my, my inner priestess, or whatever.  You never struck me as that kind of person, but so I'm wondering what prompted you to do this retreat, what did it involve and what did you get out of it? Christi Michelle: So, funny that you said that, and I don't think that I used to be, but I'm happy to openly admit I'm actually quite a spiritual person. I'm not a religious person, but I am a very spiritual person. And so, what prompted it? Two things I could say. We grow by the most through our struggles, and I've read this in a lot of different places and people talk about I wanted to go do something that was challenging. I wanted to do something that pushes you, because in this particular retreat I was in Costa Rica, definitely out with the bugs. Every night I had to look for spiders and scorpions and snakes. In my bed, on top of not eating at all, you had a one job and that was to drink as much water as humanly possible. Bradley Sutton: So, I was doing you ever have those things in your bed? Christi Michelle: Not in my bed but, I definitely have a situation a very large spider that was a. Bradley Sutton: Crossing Costa Rica off my bucket list. Christi Michelle: But it's so beautiful there, but you're there and it's. You know, I meditate a lot, I mean. So, I thought I was. Oh, I'm just going to go there, I'm going to meditate for a couple of hours every day. I'll take some naps. No, you had one job to do and that was to drink as much water as possible. So, I was drinking up to 1.75 gallons a day. But the thing is, when you're not eating, when you're not eating, you're not replenishing the electrolytes, so you have to drink 16. You can't drink any more than 16 so that you don't flush it, so it's little sips. So, from the moment you wake up to the moment you go to bed, so from 7 am to about 10, 10.30 at night, all you have to do is drink, and you're not supposed to. There's no internet, there's no WIFI, there's, I mean, you can have your phone, but there's nothing that you can't, like you know, download anything. No one tells you physically purging. Most people that went there I was very different. Most people who went there had very much had cancer, had different things. Cleansing of your body is. It's fantastic. I recommend anybody research what fasting like water fasting can do. It's one of the best things I think you can do for your body, but so there was a combination of wanting to kind of do a good cleanse, but it challenges you mentally, emotionally and physically to be uncomfortable, to be in a space you don't have any. Christi Michelle: Most people use food for comfort or to repress I mean, we all do it right or to repress some feeling, or to kind of just enhance. I mean we use food almost like it. I mean it truly is kind of like a drug where you don't have that to rely on. So, then you're sitting there by yourself, no one really to talk to, nothing to entertain you in traditional ways. You're stuck with your thoughts and you go through a lot through that. So, I like to do pretty strong challenges and so that was one of my big challenges for this year. Can I do it? And I would probably not ever do it again, I mean, unless I got very, very sick, and I thought this would. If I did, I thought that would be the best thing that it could do. But, it's just to, to challenge myself, to grow to do something different. Bradley Sutton: All right, cool. All right, man, we'll see. I've tried a lot of different things. Maybe, maybe I can try that, just minus the scorpions and snakes and spiders. Yeah, all right. Well, how can people find your company, or are you out there on the interwebs these days? Christi Michelle: I am in fact on the interwebs. I think that we have so I am right now. So, my main is I'm the coo integrator that is my agency, so that's just coo for chief operating officer, the coo integrator, that is my website. And right now, I mean, the truth is I I'm extremely fortunate that I do have a backlog of clients. And, funny enough, I don't really scale my company of all the things. Who don't she helps people scale, but she doesn't when you've had so many companies and you're responsible for hundreds, you know dozens, if not a hundred, plus people there comes a point in your life where you're like I think I'm just good with keeping things simple, but you kind of have to go through that to appreciate this. It's kind of like water fasting you have to go without food before you can appreciate the food there. but yeah, so I'd love to. I usually do free analysis with people, thank you, thank you, just to kind of help them and I can point them in the right direction. So, I'm always just kind of happy to help guide people, and anymore now I spend some time on boards of companies and I do other investments and things. So, I love the game of business. I'm always happy to talk about it. So please reach out to me, Christy, at the CEO integrator, and I'm happy to chat. Bradley Sutton: Awesome. Well, hope to see you sooner than later and I don't have to travel around the world just to be able to see you. Like Karen Spade, Christi Michelle: Yeah, going to Europe, right All right, we'll see you guys in the next episode.
6/11/202430 minutes, 19 seconds
Episode Artwork

#568 - Amazon Semantic Search & Google Indexing with Leo Sgovio

Join us in this episode as we sit down with Leo Segovio, a top expert in the space, to discuss a wide range of topics that are essential for E-commerce sellers. Leo shares his unique insights on how optimizing Amazon images can significantly impact indexing and ranking. He also opens up about his recent ventures, including a software project for influencer and affiliate marketing, and an intriguing Airbnb project in Italy. Additionally, Leo provides valuable tips for Amazon sellers looking to diversify their income by investing in real estate, highlighting the importance of strategic investments to complement a thriving Amazon business. Listen in as we explore the evolving landscape of influencer and affiliate marketing strategies. We discuss how leveraging platforms like TikTok, Instagram, and YouTube can empower brands by building robust affiliate networks. We highlight successful brands and share advanced techniques for optimizing listings to ensure better visibility on Google and Amazon. Practical tips for using press releases on high-authority domains to improve Google indexing are also discussed, offering listeners actionable advice to enhance their marketing efforts. Finally, we talk about the significance of Google indexing for Amazon sellers and the benefits of driving traffic from Google to boost Amazon rankings. We discuss the theory that paid traffic may hold more weight and the value of optimizing images with keywords to enhance discoverability. Additionally, we examine Amazon's evolving search algorithms and how intent-based optimization is changing the way products are discovered on the platform. This episode is packed with valuable insights and strategies to help Amazon sellers navigate the complexities of e-commerce and achieve greater success. In episode 568 of the Serious Sellers Podcast, Bradley and Leo discuss: 04:14 - Investing In Real Estate Investments 09:41 - Leveraging Creator Marketplace for Affiliate Networks 15:56 - Google Indexing for Amazon Sellers 18:16 - Google Traffic Boosts Amazon Ranking 24:01 - Google Indexing Boosts Product Visibility 26:46 - Search Algorithm Evolution and Intent-Based Optimization 29:13 - Optimizing Amazon Listings for Intent-Based Search Transcript Bradley Sutton: Today we've got one of the top minds in the entire Amazon game back on the show, Leo Segovia. He's going to be talking about a wide variety of topics, such as the impact on indexing and ranking by optimizing your Amazon images, and much, much more. How cool is that? Pretty cool, I think.   Bradley Sutton: Hello everybody, welcome to another episode of the Serious Sellers Podcast by Helium 10. I'm your host, Bradley Sutton, and this is the show. That's a completely BS-free, unscripted and unrehearsed organic conversation about serious strategies for serious sellers of any level in the e-commerce world. And speaking of the e-commerce world, I'm on the other side of the world right now. For those of you listening, maybe I sound a little different. We are in the AVASK office here in Madrid, Spain, right in the middle of our Elite Workshop, and just about 15 minutes ago we had our very first speaker. All the other speakers are very mad at him because he started off and he set the bar really high with his talk, but we've got no stranger to the show, Leo Segovia. Leo, how's it going?   Leo: Bradley, good morning. How are you doing?   Bradley Sutton: Doing great, doing great.   Leo: Awesome. Yeah, this morning was great. I'm actually happy this is my first time in Madrid. Yes, I actually just stopped once. I think I was on my way to Puerto Rico, but yes, I got to enjoy the city. Today I'm here at the AVASK office in Madrid, so happy to be here and happy to be your guest again.   Bradley Sutton: Awesome, awesome. So now you know it's been a while since Leo's been on the show, so let's first just catch up with what you've been up to. Have you been launching products on Amazon? You've just been focused on building software. What have you been up to the last couple of years since you've been on the show?   Leo: Yeah, it's been a crazy year for me actually. I've been involved in a couple of different projects. We are obviously always looking for new products to launch. What kept me very busy in the past year has been software that I've been working on for influencer and affiliate marketing, and actually this Airbnb project in the south of Italy, which has been kind of a roller coaster. Yeah.   Bradley Sutton: So, you actually moved, I remember you went from Canada to Florida and then a few months ago you moved back to your home, uh, country of Italy, but then this was always meant to be kind of just like a like a winter, uh or summer home for you.   Leo: Yeah, that is correct. Uh, I have a family in Italy. So, and recently their area of Italy is called Puglia, it's in the southeast was becoming more and more popular and more expensive, and so I decided to buy a property there so that we could spend a week or a month in the summertime, perhaps, when in Florida is too hot, you know, go inside of Italy. Invite some of my Amazon friends, you know, mastermind, and so that's the plan. Now, I was supposed to be there only for a couple of months, just to see what was going on, but when I got the keys, I realized that the place needed a lot of work, and so I've been stuck in Italy since November, actually, of last year, and I'll probably stay there until for two more months before going back to Miami.   Bradley Sutton: What passport do you have? What country passports? I have Italian and Canadian passport. Okay, so then, when you bought this house, you use your like Italian citizenship?   Leo: No, actually I well, I could participate to an auction because I bought this place at an auction. Not the $1 ones, it was more than that. But yes, because of my Italian citizenship it allowed me to participate to an auction. But everything that I'm doing is as a Canadian citizen. It works out better from tax perspective and all that.   Bradley Sutton: Okay. So that's why I was asking about this, because I think this is, you know, like somebody might be jumping on the show. What are we talking about? Airbnb here? But as e-commerce entrepreneurs, Amazon sellers, maybe we make a little money, maybe we're not interested in exiting our business, but now we have extra money, like do we start other businesses? You know, maybe something that has nothing to do with Amazon, but I hear of more Amazon sellers doing something similar. Where they go you know, not necessarily Italy, but another country, buy a house and then so, as a Canadian citizen or as an American citizen I would assume it's about the same. What's the process of participating, like in this Italian auction to be able to buy this house?   Leo: I think you need to have someone in Italy or a friend, someone with an Italian citizenship, in order to buy a place at auction. Otherwise, you just have to go to a real estate agent and buy a regular place. The reason for me it was convenient is because it was a good deal. If I was able to win the auction, and so in real estate, you make money when you buy, not when you sell. Right, if you buy for less, that's most likely guaranteed revenue or earnings whenever you sell, and so that's the reason why I did this. Now, I don't know exactly the process if I didn't have any Italian citizenship, but yeah, a lot of entrepreneurs you know, especially Amazon sellers whether, when they exit or you know if they're already doing quite well and they have good cashflow, they normally tend to invest in real estate Airbnb’s. You secure yourself passive income from that, and it's always a good investment.   Bradley Sutton: So then would I have to have all cash though to once the auction closed, I can finance over there.   Leo: Okay. So that's an interesting thing. I was going to finance the project. I ended up buying a cash because it just made more sense for me, but in Italy they actually give you a mortgage as long as you can prove that you have income outside of Italy.   Bradley Sutton: Okay. And then so you calculated out, like how much you can maybe get an Airbnb. And then so have you calculated hey, for the other months of the year where I'm not staying here, I need to rent this place out x amount of time of the year. And it's going to be worth it, have you like, and did that analysis?   Leo: Yeah, so in this specific region of Italy and the location of what I bought in August for a place with a pool and four or five bedrooms, you can charge 5,000 to 6,000 euros a week. So you make your money in the summertime. Ideally, as an investor, you don't want to go and spend time in the summertime there, but you want to go, perhaps either early, like May or September, when the season starts to kind of slow down and so you don't take out money from your profits, right? So my plan is to rent it out June, July and August. If I have some good offers in September, maybe I'll rent it out, otherwise I'll go myself there in September or May, but, yeah, normally throughout the year.   Leo: You know Italy is a destination where you have a lot of tourism during summertime, unless you're in Rome or Venice or Florence, which is always busy throughout the year. You know south it's a summer destination, right. So you get a lot of tourism summertime. Wintertime dies down, so you probably can get us or what you can get in the summer. But you know it works out well because if you have a small apartment, for example, in a big city, and you are charging, you know, 200, 300 a night? Um, at the end of the year you make the same money. So with this kind of properties is a little bit of a different um investment. I went more on the luxury kind of market, hoping to work only with Americans. You know foreign tourism, but in my opinion it's a great one.   Bradley Sutton: Okay, so there you have it, guys. You know, like, maybe you've had some success on Amazon and you're thinking of what kind of things to invest in. You know, getting a property at a low price and maybe fixing it up even though it's a headache a little bit, you know could be the route that you want to go. Now you know we're going to talk a lot about some really cool Amazon strategy coming up, but you've been developing some software lately for a while now. That's not necessarily for on Amazon, but it helps Amazon sellers. Can you talk about that a little bit?   Leo: Yeah, I've been working. The software is called Spliced. I've been working on this for about two years now and I was supposed to be already in market, and the reason why I'm late is because of what I just explained. It took me, you know, it took resources and energy a little bit off the other project, but now we're ready to go, and the reason why I built this software is, you know, Bradley, you know I have Convomat, which was my first software that I built, and then Amazon changed it to iOS, and so I had to find a way to pivot. But I already knew that influencer and affiliate marketing was the way to go, also for us Amazon sellers, in order to have a little bit more control over the traffic, over the business and the revenue that we drive to our brands. And so, with Spliced, my goal is to leverage the creator's marketplace, which is huge between TikTok and Instagram and YouTube, and leverage that to build affiliate networks for your own brand.   Leo: There are already a lot of sellers out there that are doing a good job when it comes to affiliate marketing. Look at a brand like Goalie. Goalie, one of the key strategies for Goalie was actually the affiliate marketing, and so with Spliced, my goal is to allow brands to look up into our marketplace, which has already been built with we have over 20 million creators and then approach them with an affiliate partnership instead of just UGC content. This is the reason why we didn't build in Spliced, just UGC campaigns. There's already plenty out there of softwares that you can use for UGC, but in my opinion, if you have a solid affiliate network, you can keep launching new products, relaunching the same products. We use it for reviews. If you need something like that and you have more control over your business, and if you decide to launch your D2C website, you can leverage the same network and start pushing traffic off of Amazon. So there are a lot of reasons why I believe people should use a platform like that. It's like building an email list, but instead you're actually leveraging the creator marketplace.   Bradley Sutton: Okay, yeah, interesting, I think TikTok how it works, people's eyes are really open to more of influencer marketing. I mean, it's basically influencer marketing. There's not really SEO on TikTok, or it's not even. Even if you understand the hashtags, it doesn't necessarily guarantee the rally. It's a numbers game like getting you know. You get out to 25 influencers and maybe 24 do nothing, and then one person, even though they're small, they get on the For you page or something like that and literally can bring thousands and thousands of dollars. There's somebody I've been helping with, you know, shipping their products and they're you know they're doing me sometimes some days a thousand fifteen hundred units of sales for like this planner and it was a hundred. They didn't spend any for PPC on TikTok 100%. You know they just push the product to influencers and then one here and one there just goes viral and it just means a lot of business.   Leo: Yeah, I think you know it's probably right now a big hype. I mean the TikTok shops everyone is talking about them working with affiliates and it's probably one of the oldest marketing strategies, if we want to call it that way. You know the affiliate marketing works because of the power that the individual creator in this case has to influence people right, and so people want to buy from people, and if you, as a brand, do a good job in recruiting a few super affiliates in this case we're talking about good creators that will turn into affiliates, then you have to worry less about that promotion part of you know launching new products.   Bradley Sutton: Interesting, interesting. Okay, now let's move a little bit back towards the Amazon world and actually I'm going to go a little bit off of Amazon, but it's something that you talked about today in your speech and we're not going to go too deep into it. If you guys want to really hear his presentation, you have to be an Elite member. So you Elite members definitely make sure to look out for the recording on that. But one thing you were talking about when it comes to images, but the way you discovered this was you said you were checking indexing on Google. So we know, on Amazon, if you want to check indexing, you just use Helium 10 index checker, right? Or if you don't have Helium 10, you can use the old school method of put the ASIN plus the keyword and then search and see if it comes up. For just rudimentary index checking for keywords. If you want to see if your Amazon product is indexed on Google, how do you even see if you are?   Leo: Yeah, so normally on Google you will copy your URL, search it on Google. You can also do a site column with your URL and then Google will show only search results that are related to the domain you're searching. But if you type the whole domain, the whole URL, the canonical URL of your Amazon listing, if you are indexed, it will show there.   Bradley Sutton: But what about if you're? Can you look if you're indexed for a specific keyword?   Leo: So if you're indexed for a specific keyword, then you want to put that URL plus the keyword and then or amazon.com/dp/your ASIN, or you can also do ASIN in quotes plus the keyword and then you will see if you get, if you're indexed on Google from that keyword. It works in a similar way. Um, but yeah, the presentation we touched a lot on you know the details of what was going on Google which was dependent on, uh, the way that the listing was optimized on Amazon.   Bradley Sutton: You talked about some advanced strategy. We'll talk a little bit about that, about like images and stuff. But without the images, is there a way to force yourself to be indexed on Google, like, for example, if you create a custom canonical URL, just insert the keywords and then if you actually happen to you know, like maybe run some Google ads, get some conversions on that, will that index you for that keyword on Google?   Leo: Yeah, so, based on some experiments that I've done, the easiest way to get indexed on Google is to publish some press releases on domains with good authority score domain rank and have your you know pointing a link to your listing with the anchor text that you potentially also want to rank for using that specific canonical tag that you get from your Amazon listing. So the reason why this works better is because normally Google indexes across these websites. Like you know, if you publish through PR, news or something like that, they will be crawled, and so Google will find these links and then follow your Amazon listing, which obviously, as a consequence, would be indexed.   Bradley Sutton: Okay, interesting. Now, taking it a step further, why should an Amazon seller even be concerned about indexing on Google like, um? Obviously, if you're running Google ads, you know your goal is to get direct sales from it. But just being ranked organically, um, what kind of bumps do you see on sales? Or how does it help a to be ranked high? I'm not just index. I mean index doesn't do much if you're ranked on page 30 or something, but how does ranking organically for a keyword? What's the potential there for helping sales?   Leo: So there, are a few reasons why you want to be indexed on Google, and for the most, let's start from the most advanced ones, right? Advanced sellers they normally try to send traffic to Amazon, especially during the launch period, using external traffic, right? So Google, we know, is a good referral that tends to help your rankings, and so Amazon tends to reward you if they see traffic coming from Google. So if you're not indexed, you lose a chance to show Amazon that you are getting traffic from Google. Now, I have a theory that paid traffic has a little bit more weight than organic, but the reason why you want to be indexed and the reason why you might want to be indexed for certain keywords is so that when you drive traffic through the URL to Amazon, you can actually give attribution to that keyword. That's number one, right? So you can actually use these URLs as your two-step.   Leo: Number two if you do a good job with your indexation and your listing is optimized, you actually also appear in the images, right? And so if people are looking for specific products, sometimes I search on Google using images because I'm looking for specific products that might be hard to find on Amazon, but if I look through the Google images and I find the product, then I go to Amazon, and so if you're not indexed, you're also not going to be able to be found there, and Google images actually gets a ton of traffic. So here are some of the reasons why, two of the reasons why. I can think of many more, but the most important are these ones. Google is still one of the largest search engine, and so missing out on that opportunity, I'm afraid it causes a lot of missed visibility for an Amazon seller at a listing level.   Bradley Sutton: And then you've done some tests before where you noticed that if that Amazon can read what the search was from Google, so that when you get sales from a keyword in Google, it also potentially could help your Amazon ranking for that keyword, right?   Leo: Yeah, that is correct. There was a test that we have done two years ago where everyone was talking about Google traffic and so we drove traffic straight from Google paid to Amazon without using any keyword in the URL, and then we noticed that for the keywords that we were actually bidding on, we saw a lift in ranking. I remember going from position I think it was 35 or so to position seven or five. So surprisingly we saw that Amazon was able to attribute that search query on Google and then the ranking as a result for the keyword was actually improving on Amazon as well.   Bradley Sutton: Okay, interesting, interesting. Now let's switch and talk a little bit about images, because this also has to do with ranking on Amazon. It has to do with ranking on Google, getting indexed in Google. What has more of an impact with getting discovered or being able to be read by Google? Is it if you have an infographic and the actual words appear in the infographic, you know on the actual image, or is it the metadata, or it only works the best if you're doing both?   Leo: In my opinion, you have to do both, and the reason is that right now, every search engine uses AI to detect subjects, text and everything on an image. You know, if you look, if you're a Facebook advertiser, you probably know that they've had this for a long time. If you add more text on an image than the image, the visual itself, your ad wouldn't have been approved, and so AI detection for images has been going on for a while. But now, since you know, ChatGPT came out and you know Lama from Facebook, we have, you know. We know we have a lot more information about this topic, and what we found is that the search engines, including Amazon and Google, they scan the content of your image and they're able to rank these images based on the content of that image, including subjects, context and in the subjects and text. Did I say that?   Leo: So, basically, what Google cares the most on top of that is also the metadata, because the metadata helps the search engine classify that image. So, while the content itself helps them understanding okay, this is what this image is about the actual metadata is more technical for the crawlers, the engine themselves so that they can place you in certain categories. And so when it comes to Amazon, the content on the image right now, I noticed that through some different experiments, that is being used for ranking reasons. And so if you look at some products that don't have, for example, keywords on the images, they are less. You know there are multiple factors. Obviously, they play when it comes to rankings, but if you put two products side by side same ranking, same ratings, same being on market for the same time period, timeframe and same price one has text on images and keywords and one doesn't. Most likely the one with keywords on images is going to rank better.   Bradley Sutton: Okay. So then what Amazon sellers should be doing is for their main images, or you know, the in their image carousel and their A+ content is I mean, obviously you can't have text in your main image. You know that's against terms of surface, although if you can have the packaging there, that's a good, that's a good opportunity. But then to get, hey, you use the right keywords, but then also, if you're using like photoshop or something you have and we're not going to go into detail, it's like there's a bunch of crazy stuff about copyright and there's fields there that he talks about in his presentation. You'll have to watch the Elite workshop for that. But you've been doing testing where it one has, it one doesn't, and then it gets you indexed on Google. You've actually seen where the ones who did it, their Amazon sales were like way higher than the ones who did it.   Leo: Yeah, that is correct. We analyzed an e-brace on Amazon and this is, you know work that I was doing with a friend of mine, and we were trying to understand why these competitors were actually indexed on Google and they were indexed for certain keywords. Not the main keyword, but a variation of them. And so what I did I created this Google sheet where I was helping me understand which ones were indexed and for what keywords they were indexed and that led me to see that the ASINs that actually were indexed on Google were indexed for keywords that were present on the A+ banners. And so when we did that, what happened, this happened within 48 hours, we noticed that Google indexed that specific product image and they were actually featuring it as a search result on Google for the main search query, so that image wasn't used as a snippet or thumbnail for the listing itself. So the URL wasn't amazon.com/dp/ASIN, it was amazon.com/ the search you know embrace.   Leo: So it took me to the search results page, but the image that they took as a featured image was actually the one of my client, and so that was very interesting because Google detected a refinement and it detected an update in that listing. It saw that that image was very relevant for the search query because of the way that we optimized it using metadata and then they used it as the main image on the Google search results. Now this, to me, is fascinating and is very important, because if you are a shopper and you're searching on Google for an e-brace and then you see this image, most likely that's psychological,   most likely when you land on the Amazon search results page, you're going to go and find a product, you're going to go and click that product. So that added traffic, that added conversion rate, helped us recover the racing and the sales that we were losing. But that was a very interesting experiment that we did.   Bradley Sutton: Interesting, okay. So again, if you guys want to get more information about that, that almost might be worth it just to subscribe to Helium 10 Elite for one week, just to get that presentation. So if you guys want to look into that, go to h10.me forward slash Elite and see it's only $99 extra, so make sure to sign up for that. Now, another thing that I think a lot of people have been talking about not just you, but you were one of the first ones to talk about semantic search and Cosmo and things like this, and we'll talk about what that means. But I think, just to set some groundwork, I think everybody understands that any search algorithm will evolve over time. That's the whole purpose. Like the companies who don't want to do well, they'll just keep their algorithm the same right. But anybody you know whether we're talking about Google, Facebook, TikTok has an amazing algorithm, Amazon. It changes over time and we've seen that.   Bradley Sutton: You know, if we were searching five years ago on Amazon, it's different. And now if you've bought some how many of you who have bought something you search for a keyword that has to do with that and that thing that you bought is now at the top on your Amazon maybe not somebody else. That didn't happen like five, six years ago. Last year we showed an example of how you search a keyword that doesn't really exist. It's called noodle camera and no listing has the word noodle camera in it. But there was like maybe 30 listings that came up and it was like a stethoscope camera it looks like a noodle. So five years ago you put noodle camera it would say zero results because nobody has that in their listing and these listings don't have that keyword in there. But it's showing up because Amazon shows history that, oh, people don't know what this is called stethoscope camera but then they think it looks like a noodle. So now it's showing listing. So we've seen this even for a year. Now, first of all, Amazon science documents we've talked about it, but maybe 80%, 90%, never actually is 100% in production. Sometimes it goes into production, sometimes it doesn't. But what was it that made Cosmo so interesting these documents that talked about it, that you're like man. This is something that you think that Amazon is going to move towards.   Leo: Yeah, the reason why, I think is something that would be applied at scale across the marketplace is because, as searchers, as buyers, as shoppers, our goal when we use a search engine is to find a product or information that we need in order to solve a problem. And so, as a technology company in this case we're talking about Amazon their goal is to improve, like Bradley said, the algorithm in order to simplify that search result and give you exactly what you're looking for, by burning some steps in the middle, right. And so that's what Cosmo is designed for. Cosmo is designed to be a man in the middle, between yourself and the search results, right, when you work together with it to give feedback back and forth. And so what they do right now they learn. You type a search query, they give you some result, you refine that result by clicking on some products that you think are relevant. And what they do with this information? They start building this knowledge graph, right. So a classic example if you go on Wikipedia and for something, Wikipedia normally links to other relevant sources. That's what they call the knowledge graph, right? They know that this is relevant to that right. And so what cosmo is trying to do, instead of you having to refine the search. They're refining it for you.   Leo: So the example that I give in my presentation this morning is that, if someone is searching for winter coat, we saw a product that ranks number one on Amazon that doesn't have the word winter coat in the title. But yeah, they're ranked number one, and so this is shocking, right, like everyone's like oh come. Title is supposed to be the most important element on the page when it comes to optimization and some SEOs, but this time Amazon understood that you are looking for something that keeps you, to keep you warm, right. So now we're shifting from a keyword-based search to intent-based search, and so, as sellers, right now, what we need to do is understand what is the actual intent behind the person. What am I selling this to? I'm selling this to someone that wants to stay warm, right, that's what the purpose of a winter coat is, and so, with that intent in mind, we need to optimize listings so that we can convey the message through images, through the title, bullet points and description, so that Amazon, the new Cosmo, understands that this product is something that helps people stay warm.   Leo: And what I think is going to happen also because of the shift in the way that these search results are built, which is more intent-based, is that Amazon then will start recommending also related products. So if you're looking for, if you type in winter coat, they say, okay, well, this person is trying to stay warm and so let me show them also some winter gloves and winter socks and maybe some winter boots, and that will change everything right. They will change the way we advertise, they will change the way we try to be associated with other products. They will change the way we also promote our listings. So that's very interesting and fascinating, but I think it's a good thing for the buyer, right, while for our sellers might be challenging to figure out again, how do we optimize our listings keeping this semantic concept in mind for the buyer? And they've already proven. If you look at the Amazon science document in the research papers, they're already saying that they're seeing a lift in conversion rate when Cosmo is applied to a search result page. So we must pay attention to these and monitor certain. It's challenging right now to understand where this is applied, but we need to monitor better the Amazon marketplace and then evolve and adapt as Cosmo gets released into more categories.   Bradley Sutton: Not to be controversial here, but to me it's almost it's different, but it's not different. Like, at the end of the day, Amazon wants to make money, right, so that winter coat that became number one. It's not number one necessarily because of new algorithm, because it would not be number one unless that is one of the best converting ones, because that's what gives Amazon the best chance to make money. But I think where the difference here is, or what's something that's quote unquote new, is it gives people more at bats. Like maybe I never. Even if I didn't have winter coat in my title, it might've been almost impossible for me to get on page one. But now Amazon is all right, let's just throw it here. Oh, shoot, look at that, how well it's converting. Let's go ahead and push it all the way to the top, whereas maybe you know, four years ago, you know, unless you were super optimized for a certain keyword, you would never even have the ad back. Like you would never even be able to get on page one, you know, outside of PPC or something. So to me that's like the difference, but something also. Again, I keep saying I don't want to be controversial, but it's going to be because there's a lot of people I respect in the industry who have been talking a lot about things that and I agree mostly with them. But I completely disagree when they say things like, oh, tools like maybe Helium 10, if they don’t change it’s going to be out of date. To me, I cannot see a world where the traditional forms of keyword research, are going to be not as important In the future, if Amazon is super intuitive, of course that's going to evolve.   Bradley Sutton: But the main reason we do keyword research is to get indexed and to also make our listing. Initially because the Amazon algorithm is based on buyer interaction, right. So once it's been out there for three, four weeks, they have so many data points and how people searched and what they clicked on and stuff that. Okay, now we can start doing advanced algorithms. But to even get it in the right pages you had to have done the regular keyword research to show Amazon. Because when you're brand new, day zero of your listing, Amazon has no idea what it is. It goes by the image, it goes by what you have in the title and how you have it. So my personal opinion is that no like. Of course, little things are going to change with keyword research here or there, but the main core of hey, let me find the most important keywords. That's not going to change because you have to tell Amazon on day one what is your product.   Leo: So, Bradley, I agree with you and I think there is one important detail that is the link between what you're saying and what this all semantic stuff is about. Right, the reason why that winter coat might be ranking number one, even though the winter coat is not in the title is attributes of the winter coat. You know Amazon right now, which before they probably weren't doing before Cosmo, right, they're looking at the attributes. So most likely they are ranking this one very well because it contains, uh, goose feathers, or they have 300 grams of goose feathers per square meter or whatever foot, and so they now are using these attributes to understand is this product warmer than this one? So, while the keyword research tools are always going to be needed, what I think is an opportunity for companies like Helium 10 is now provide additional information to the seller together with the main keywords. That helps also the listing be more relevant for Cosmo, using attributes related to those keywords. So, if the keyword is winter coat, what are the main attributes of coats? Right? What does a coat have to have? Waterproof, has to be warm. What kind of feeling? Is it polyester? Is it goose feathers? Also, is it long or short? Things like that are going to be the difference between the traditional keyword research tools and the semantic powered keyword research tools. If you guys give the sellers the same list of keywords and, by the way, here are some attributes related to these keywords, that will help Amazon Cosmo understand more about your product. I think that's the winner, in my opinion.   Bradley Sutton: Yeah, and in his presentation he talked a lot about different things you can do to be more semantically relevant and you know, using ChatGPT, so some really good features there. But that's important because you know, the it's not just, we're not just talking about Amazon SEO, it's also going to help you on Google and Bing and these, these other things and there's things that just the human mind we can't process, but a computer can process and tell you hey, this is, this is the keywords with the buyer intent and this is the most important, this is how you can relate yourself. So, regardless of how much of this Amazon develops, it's already important now for outside of Amazon indexing. Now, before we get into your last strategy, and I have just a couple of questions for you if people want to get more information, reach out to you, find out about your new project you're working on, or just reach out to you. How can they find you out there?   Leo: I have my own website right now. It's leosgovio.com, so you can reach out to me on through my website.   Bradley Sutton: And spell that, because it's not spelled exactly as you might think.   Leo: It's l-e-o and then s as in Sam, g as in George, o, v as in Victor, i o. Yeah, over there I have some information also about the semantic SEO stuff. So if you're more interested about this, I'd be happy to share my knowledge in depth, and LinkedIn is one of the platforms that I use the most.   Bradley Sutton: Excellent. All right Favorite Helium 10 tool?   Leo: Magnet   Bradley Sutton: If you were a head of product at Helium 10, what is one tool or function that you would bring that we do not have currently?   Leo: I believe I will combine what we just discussed about into one tool, and so it's an hybrid between a listing analyzer powered with recommendation based on the semantic stuff.   Bradley Sutton: And your 30 to 60 second tip can be about anything for sellers out there.   Leo: Leverage. Try to think about your current strategy when it comes to product inserts. To leverage it for UGC.   Bradley Sutton: All right guys. If you want more information, go to leosgovia.com. Check them out in the Helium 10 Elite, the Q2 workshop replay. But thank you, guys, so much for joining us and we'll definitely be reaching out to Leo next year to see what he's been up to.   Leo: Thanks, Bradley, I appreciate you having me again and, yeah, looking forward to the next one.   Bradley Sutton: Adios desde España.
6/8/202439 minutes, 8 seconds
Episode Artwork

#567 - How To Split Test Your Amazon Listings To Make More Money

Can a minor tweak to your Amazon listing images earn you an extra $40,000 a year? We uncover the incredible power of optimizing click-through rates and how even a 4% increase can transform your sales figures. Using split testing and tools like Helium 10 Audience, we guide you through the process of obtaining crucial market feedback to enhance your listings. From experimenting with main images and titles to leveraging Amazon's "Manage Your Experiments" feature, we leave no stone unturned in our quest to maximize your product's potential. What if you could figure out exactly which product image will capture consumers' attention before you even launch on Amazon? We dive into a fascinating case study involving a coffin shelf to reveal how audience testing can refine your images and help customers see the full value of what you offer. By investing in audience feedback, you can start with the best possible image, avoiding costly mistakes and boosting your chances of success right from the get-go. Ever wondered how psychological and demographic factors influence shopping decisions? We explore advanced listing optimization strategies and the importance of organic ranking during product launches. Through a real-time example with our Project X egg rack product, we illustrate how offline split tests can provide quick insights without risking revenue loss. Plus, discover the mechanics of A/B testing for product images, using Helium 10 Audience powered by PickFu to enhance your listings and drive your Amazon sales through the roof. Don't miss these game-changing tips and practical advice on making the most of your Amazon presence! In episode 567 of the Serious Sellers Podcast, Bradley discusses: 00:00 - Optimizing Amazon Listing's Click-Through Rate for Sales 01:08 - Split Testing Images for Amazon Success 09:22 - Amazon Listing A/B Testing Image Results 11:17 - Optimizing Product Images With Audience Testing 16:00 - Improve Your Product Launches With Helium 10 19:13 - Targeting Audience for Advertising Campaign 24:13 - Listing Optimization Strategies and Launch Tactics 26:18 - Importance of Helium 10 Audience Testing 30:34 - A/B Testing for Product Images 31:33 - Testing for Best-Selling Variation in Audience 34:30 - Utilizing Tools for Amazon Sellers Transcript Bradley Sutton: Did you know that improving your click-through rate from search results on a product even only 4% for a product that maybe only sells even on just 10 units a day could mean up to $40,000 of extra sales in a year? Today, I'm going to show you exactly how you can split test your listing images in order to achieve results like this. How cool is that? Pretty cool, I think. Not sure on what main image you should choose from, or maybe you don't know whether buyers would be interested in your product at a certain price point. Perhaps you want feedback on your new brand or company logo. Get instant and detailed market feedback from actual Amazon Prime members by using Helium 10 Audience. Just enter in your poll or questions and, within a short period of time, 50 to 100 or even more Amazon buyers will give you detailed feedback on what resonates with them the most. For more information, go to h10.me/audience.   Bradley Sutton: All right, hello everybody, welcome to another episode of the Serious Sellers Podcast by Helium 10. I'm your host, Bradley Sutton, and this is the show that is our monthly Ask Me Anything, where we do a training on a certain topic and then we open it up to all the members out there to go ahead and ask whatever questions you have about Helium 10 or Amazon that we can help you with. And today we're going to be talking about split testing images, both on Amazon, off Amazon, and we're going to do some live examples of this, and we're going to talk about why this is important and how it can help you. I think it's one of the most slept on things that a lot of Amazon sellers aren't doing.   Bradley Sutton: All right, let's get started here. Now let me just give some framework on why I think this is something that literally every Amazon private label seller should be doing. When we create a new listing right, we have in our own mind what might convert the best as far as images, as far as titles, things like this, and it's based on, you know, hopefully some solid research. You know, maybe we've checked out the competition, maybe we know this certain niche right, but the problem is sometimes we might be a little bit biased, or we might kind of like overvalue our own knowledge of a certain niche, and when we do that, we could be leaving money on the table. You know, let's just do some calculations, guys. Let's just say that you know you want a certain click-through rate from the search results.   Bradley Sutton: Let's just talk about main image, right now. Let's just say that your conversion rate, once people actually get to your page, is 10%. Let's just say it's 10%. All right, 10% of the people who click on your product they're going to convert. Now, if your click-through rate is also, let's just say 10%, right, that means that on a certain keyword page or just overall, let's just talk about it overall let's just say you know you're getting like a thousand impressions, right? You know a thousand people see your product and if you have a 10% click-through rate on it I'm not just talking about PPC, just in general I'm doing some general numbers here that means a hundred people click on your product. If it's 10% your click-through rate and then if your conversion rate is 10%, how many people buy your product? 10. All right, so 10 out of 1,000. So let's say your product is a coffin shelf, that's $30. With these numbers. Right, that means you're doing every day about $300 worth of orders. Okay, $300 worth of orders over the course of a year, that's about a hundred thousand dollars. So you've got a six figure product, a hundred thousand dollars.   Bradley Sutton: Now let's just pretend that nothing else changes except your click-through rate. That means that the more the people see it in the search results, then the more they're going to click on it. What if we could bring your click-through rate from 10%, not even 5%. Let's bring it from 10 to 14. So that's a 4% increase. All right, 4% increase. So that means if, instead of 100 people a day clicking on your product, how many is that going to be? So we take 100, or we take 1000 and multiply that by 0.14. That means that 140 people are going to see your product. And if you still have the conversion rate of 10%, how many people are buying that per day? That's now 14 people who are buying that a day. So we take that 14, Times it by what's the retail price? $30. That's $420 a day you are doing on your product. We times that by 365. Now you have gone from a product that does just over $100,000 a year $109,000.   Bradley Sutton: Now you've got a product that is getting $153,000 per year. You just increased by over $40,000 and you did not even change your conversion rate. You only changed the amount, your click-through rate, the amount of people who see your product in the search results and click through it, and not even by 5%, a 4% increase. Okay, Now, that's what I'm talking about here. So this is why I think this is a very important topic, and I'm just only talking about one thing you know what are the things that influence click-through rates. You know it could be your price point, it could be the way you have your title set up. It could be your main image, which is what I was talking about. So, this is why it's so important to make sure that, at the very least, you start split testing different things of your listing. All right, now Amazon has a live split tester and we're going to talk about that. First, how many people use, you know, manage your experiments. Those of you who have, who have brand registry. All right, let me show you how to do that, and then I'm going to talk about in what situations I use it, but then also the potential drawbacks of using this.   Bradley Sutton: This is in Seller Central, in the how Cool Is that? Project X account. The part that you can do split testing for free if you have brand registry is called manage your experiments. So you click on brands and then you click on manage experiments and what this does is it allows you to do live split testing of new things. All right. So, the kind of things that I can split test is my A+ content, I can do my Bullet Points, Product Images, Product Description, Product Title, A+ Brand Story, or I can do Multi-Attribute. All right, we're just going to keep it real simple and mainly talk about main image, because in my opinion that's one of the biggest things that could really make an impact on your either click through rate or conversion rate. All right. So I did a few of these recently, all right, one of them is going right now, all right.   Bradley Sutton: So this is a product I had called a bat bath mat, all right, and I had two different main images I was split testing. Let me show you the actual content. One was an old, like computer generated image I had and one was a newer one that AMZ one step did, all right, so you can see very similar images. Those of you watching this online, I can see. You can see it's very similar images, but just different angles, all right. And so it's like hey, I wanted to split, test this in the search results and take a look at this is ongoing. This is literally going right now. That's why it hasn't gone through yet and you can see that one of them, I sold 24 units and the other one 18 units. All right, one of them, 11 units sold from search. The other one, 4 units from search. Okay, one of them has a 0.07 conversion rate. One of them has a 0.05.   Bradley Sutton: All right, so it looks like version A, which is what I have, is going to win. Okay, so that's one that's literally going right now. Here's the other one we're going to be going over today is the coffin shelf, all right. So here is this one and it completed. Okay. Now look at this one here, this one actually, I started around the same time, but look at this one. This one had a 0.1 version at a 0.04 conversion rate and the other one had a 0.005 conversion rate. That option A sold nine units over this very short period of time, and the other one only one unit. So this one already stopped because Amazon's like, oh my goodness, this is like night and day. This is going to be the good one compared to what I was showing. All right, so this one shows good information. But here's the thing. Let's just say that, on this live split test that I was doing with Manager Experiments, this one was it was almost like a 10X better one image over the other. But how Amazon is doing this is it is showing this product with the different images and search results like half of the day showing one, like half of the day showing the other.   Bradley Sutton: So the problem with doing this live split test if it's a brand new listing especially is that, by definition, sometimes half the time you are showing an unoptimized image. What if, during this time, I was showing just the good image? I would have maybe, in this situation, almost doubled my sales, if not more, because I was wasting half of the day showing an image that was not well converting. Ok, now I think there's a time and place to do manager experience, especially some with some of the nuances of your bullet points, A+ content or more mature listings. But when you are trying to, you know rank or you've got a brand new product, you can understand maybe a little bit why it's probably not good to just go ahead and launch a product and then do a manager experiments from the get go, because you don't want to be, by definition, screwing your listing 50% of the day, if that makes sense, all right.   Bradley Sutton: So let me show you what I think that everybody should be doing and I've been doing this for years is using a service called PickFu and inside of Helium 10, it's called Helium 10 Audience, and before I even launched my listing, I am doing this research, all right. So let me just show you. I did the exact same test yesterday and we're going to do a couple of tests together. Let me show you what I did yesterday or last night in Helium 10 audience. I set up a poll and I told the customers hey, you are searching for a coffin shelf. This coffin shelf includes a gift box and spooky accessories. If you saw the following 3 images in the search results for a product, which would make you want to click it the most, and do you see the one that won by overwhelming amount, a score of 56 to 22 to 22, this one that won in the manager experiments.   Bradley Sutton: Now, let's just pretend that this was a brand-new product release. I mean, this is not a brand-new product release. This is the Helium 10 coffin shelf that's been out there. But I came to the exact same conclusion using my test audience, and so I could have started from day one with the right image without having to have 50% of the time a bad image showing up because it's a live listing. So this is the beauty about using Helium 10 Audience that I think everybody like literally every single product launch. You should be running this. Now granted, you know some of you may have, you know, be launching, like you know, 20 products at a time. I was just talking to my friend, a Helium 10 Elite member, Yizhak, and he was launching some leggings and you know, when he launches leggings, he's got like three different kinds of variations. Launching some leggings and you know, when he launches leggings, he's got like three different kinds of variations. So every single group has, you know, like 100 variations because it's three different kinds. He's got size and inseam and color and then each of those has like eight combinations, right. So I'm not saying, oh yeah, Yizhak should have done 100 Pickfu or Helium 10 Audience tests, that that's not very economical or feasible, but at least you want to check it once.   Bradley Sutton: For the main, you know image results, right? So the beauty about this is it's not just, oh, random people are voting on what image they think is the best to be able to get money. The people who are doing the Helium 10 Audience, you know they actually get paid. That's why each time we do this, it costs money between 50 and $60 or so because each of the people who are responding are getting paid to give their responses. And to give their response, they have to give you information, and you don't have that in the manager experiments in Amazon. So, for example, some of the people who picked option A, which is the one that won you can read here what they're saying. This one person says hey, this image shows me all of the accessories and multiple angles of the box. Another person says option A shows the coffin both open and closed, as well as clearly showing what the accessories look like. Now, this is important. This is important, I never would have thought about this. Did you guys catch this? They think that this tells me something right here the fact that two people said multiple angles of the coffin. Let's go back to the image. This is not multiple angles of the coffin.   Bradley Sutton: All right, these are two products that are included in the product. One is a coffin shelf and one is a coffin shaped box. So, right away, this is not something that I'm just going to go and say oh, this image one, right? Because now, all of a sudden, my thought process has changed. I thought that this image is going to clearly show that a gift box is included and it's two separate products. But no, here are two people who just said that they think it's the same product, but just showing open and close in different angles. So now I know I might need to go back and figure out something to make it more obvious that, no, you're getting two products for the price of one. This coffin box is a gift box that's separate from the regular coffin. Let's keep reading. I literally haven't looked at these until this second. Here's another person. I find A more appropriate. It has an all-around preview of the product. Okay's another person I find a more appropriate. It has an all around preview of the product. Okay, another person says I like to see the two trinkets at the bottom right of the image. That was important to me because I wanted to make it clear that people who order our coffin shelf they get, like this LED candle plus something else.   Bradley Sutton: So, I'm going to keep reading this and see how many people are saying that they think that this is just showing a different angle. So, you see how it's different levels. All right, it's not just a matter of oh, which image is best. But now I might have to go back to the drawing board and say how do I make sure that people understand that they actually get two products in one? And then I would. I would go ahead and try to make a new image and then run it again versus this one, versus the other images. So sometimes I run Helium 10 audience maybe three times on a certain, a certain product. Okay, I hope you guys understand the value of this Number one. The first value is before I even launch a product, I can make sure that from day one I am launching with the most optimized image. The other option I could have done is even taking it a step further is Photoshop this into like Amazon search results and actually show the title and maybe show a couple of competitors. This is why I run Helium 10 Audience, sometimes 2,3 times. Yeah, it cost me like 200 bucks to do it. I mean I was using this since it was PickFu, since it wasn't in Helium 10, but it was worth it to me, the kind of insight I get.   Bradley Sutton: So number one is hey, am I running the most optimized search result image or experience? I guess, if you can consider the title also in the price? And then, secondly, am I completely overlooking something like I just did here, where I thought it was very clear that people are getting 2 different products here in the same package, but some people thought it was just a different angle of one product? Okay, we are going to run this live, a brand new one, and it just has two options, and it's a brand-new product launch that I'm doing. So let's go ahead and run this live together. I'm going to go to Helium 10 Audience and I have 2 images that are very, very similar. Okay, very, very similar, and it's a product I'm going to launch today or tomorrow on Amazon. So here's what we do. We go to tools in Helium 10. Under listing optimization, we hit audience and then I'm going to hit create new poll. All right, and I could do use poll builder or build from scratch. I'm going to go ahead and use the poll builder and we are going to do. You can see all the different things that we can test here A+ content, a general idea, logo, infographics or secondary image, product listing, product title, a video, a voiceover, even something about a website. All of these things we can do. I'm going to do product images, which is main image, right here.   Bradley Sutton: Okay, do I'm going to do product images, which is main image, right here? Okay, now I'm going to write my question. So let's go ahead and write. A question is, you are searching on amazon for a stackable egg rack? Which of these main image options would make you want to click on the product more? I can probably have made this better, but we're going to do this live, all right, let's go to the next step. All right, what are my two options? Let's go ahead and add these. See, very similar, but again, I want every little bit counts. Remember, I just showed you guys that having a difference of even just 4% for my click-through rate could mean $50,000 a year, almost all right. So you can see there's two different images here. One has a full rack of eggs and one only has half of them, and it's a slightly different angle. Let's go ahead and see the next step.   Bradley Sutton: I can pick the audience, all right. So I could just go general audience first, available respondents. I might just go ahead and do that now. Or I can choose a custom audience where I'm like hey, I want men, I want women, I want dog owners, I want people who exercise four times a week. There's a billion different options here. The one that I usually pick is Amazon Prime subscribers. All right, that's what I'm looking for. I could pick an age range, right, in this case. I want this to run super fast, because the more I segment it like this, it takes longer. I'm just going to hit general audience because this product is general. You know, like men like it, it all ages. But like if I was doing a pet grooming product and it's specifically for dogs, you better believe I'm going in there and I am going in and choosing, you know, like dog owners or something like that, or if I have a product that's specifically for men or for women of a certain age group. I'm going to go in there and make sure that the people who are going to vote on this are exactly my target market. I'm only going to choose 50 people for the audience. I can find out, you know, behavioral habits or personal traits of the people who are responding here if I wanted. I'm just using the free option here. Next, step 50. Let's just go with this.   Bradley Sutton: All right. Now again, is this the best way to do it? No, the best way is probably to also show my competitors you know image, okay, and maybe even show it in the search results. I'm doing something simple, just so you can see how this works. All right, let's go ahead and proceed to checkout. Boom, okay, it is working now. All right. So, this one is going to be in progress. We're going to poll it up right here and we're going to keep going back to this. This is live. It's literally going out to a whole bunch of people right now. We're going to go back and check that. What situations would you want to use this, compared to when you would want to use the Amazon manage your experiments. Well, if I haven't launched my product, 10 out of 10, I am doing this, I mean literally 100% of the time that I launch a product I'm running a Helium 10 Audience on some of my main aspects right, because, remember, I don't want to start off with potentially an unoptimized or not the best option for my image or title. Right from day 1, especially during the honeymoon period, I'm trying to get the best click-through rate possible and the best conversion rate.   Bradley Sutton: Now, sometimes, if I'm just testing something else and I don't, I think I'm doing pretty well and there's nothing I'm going to do. That's going to be a big change. Well, yeah, I'll go ahead and run manager experiments, because it's free, right on an exact listing. And actually, when you run manager experiments, you can get additional details on what's going on, as you saw from what Amazon was showing, right? Let me just show you again what are the kind of things that you can see. You know you can see what your conversion rate is. You can see how many units are sold from search, how many sales from search. You can see the exact sample size, et cetera, et cetera. So in that situation, if I'm like, hey, I've got a pretty optimized listing. I've already run my Helium 10 Audience before and I just want to tweak something that I don't think is going to make a big difference.   Bradley Sutton: Well, yeah, I'll go ahead and use the manager experiments, but if you have not tested your main image on a brand-new listing, you haven't launched yet. 100% guys, I do not launch any product without having run this, and so if you are out there and you're launching products and you are not split testing your image first, or split testing perhaps your price point or how the product might show up in the search results, I strongly believe you could be leaving money on the table. I mean, some people can change your click-through rate by up to 10%. Even if you change it 1%, 1% guys, on that one that I was showing you, that would sell what did I say? Like 10 units a day only. If I was only selling 10 coffin shelves a day and if I just change my click-through rate by 1%, we're still talking thousands of dollars difference per year I'm getting by increasing my click-through rate just 1%. So is that worth a $50 Helium 10 audience? Well, you better believe. That's why I do it for every single one of my listings.   Bradley Sutton: Any questions so far with this concept of like split, testing your images before you launch. Kan says can you show me please how to navigate to the experiment page in Helium 10? Yeah, absolutely, let me show you really quick. So where this is you click your main menu in Helium 10 at the top left where it says tools and under listing optimization. And, by the way, everybody has this option. This is not something that's only Diamond, because it's a pay-per-use, so everybody has access to it. You click under listing optimization. It's Audience. All right, there's. Oh, my goodness, look at this, guys. I just started this like what? 5 minutes ago, not even 5 minutes ago. What am I saying? Like 3 minutes ago, and I've already got 18 results. And do you remember? I said you guys were kind of split down the middle between option A and option B. Well, take a look here. We've got now 10 to 9, so it's very similar with what you guys had thought, except it's slight chance to option A.   Bradley Sutton: All right, so what are, what are some of the things that people are saying all right, one person here says I'm more likely to click on A, the left one, because this is full of eggs, which makes me think that'll hold a lot more likely to click on A, the left one, because this is full of eggs, which makes me think that'll hold a lot more, even though I know they hold the same amount. It feels like it can store and organize more. It's also more visually appealing to see the eggs neat and orderly like this instead of the other image, so it makes me, you see, like that's something I didn't even think about. You see this other one where it's like you know, somebody with like ADD or something like might be looking at this and like, hey, why do people just have random holes in this egg rack used? And it's not all full. It's like it's just a psychological thing. All right, so I see, always when I run this guys, I always have new things that I didn't think about. Look at this in the last one minute that I was talking, seven more people already responded.   Bradley Sutton: Let's go ahead and load those seven. We are still at almost half each here. Wow, that's crazy. Right on the line of what people want more. I could see hey, what's the age range of the people who are responding right now, it looks like 58% of younger people are choosing B, but of the older age range, 45 and up, 66% want option A. So there's something right there. All of a sudden, I have some insight. Well, if my target market is older people, I might go ahead and favor option A regardless of the score here, because that's who likes my product more. So that's the kind of level that you can go in, all right.   Bradley Sutton: So, your takeaway, guys, is if you're in the midst of launching a product, don't ever launch a product without running Helium 10 Audience. Okay, this is how important I think it is. You might think you have the best main image or the best title, but really make sure you have some solid proof before doing it. Now, if you already have a listing active, you still if you never split test anything and it's something big like the main image it might be still better to run Helium 10 audience just so that you can get instant results within like a day, of which one might be better, and then immediately change it if you need to. Because remember, if you run manager experiments in Amazon, it might take 30 days to get a. You know enough results and in those 30 days 15 of the days, half of the day, half of the month you are running an image or a title or whatever. That is not exactly that. That is not optimized, and so you know you can just kind of understand that you might be leaving hundreds of dollars on the table half the month if you're running something, a live split test like that. So that's why I always like running my split test immediately in one day and offline.   Bradley Sutton: All right. Did you say that when you do an A-B test on Amazon, they automatically convert the listing to use the best image they tested? If you choose that. So that is an option on Amazon where you can say automatic it's called, automatically publish the winning result or something like that it's called, and you just check that if you want it to automatically do it, or you just say you uncheck that and then you just look at the results and then you decide which one you want to go with. You have both of those options on Amazon. All right, we already have. The vote is finished for the egg rack pictures, and the one with all of the egg racks won with a score of 52 to 48. So this is not like a very clear cut winner here, but you know, like the other one, the coffin shelf one which had a score of like 50 to 20 to 20. But now at least I have a little bit more confidence to go with this image that has all of them, and then I'm going to start reading these comments here to see if I get more information. Look, it's 50 people respond in like what? 10, 15 minutes here and now I have all this data to go through to really make my decision when I launch this later today.   Bradley Sutton: Matter of fact, as soon as I get off this call, I'm probably going to do it. What am I? Which image am I going to use? And is there something I didn't consider. Like remember what happened on the coffin shelf? I realized that people think that it's the same. It's the same image, just a different angle. So I'm going to definitely read this once I'm done with the call. Ali says using launch strategies like the Maldives honeymoon, when do you really start focusing on actual profit and long-term viability of the product? What's the perfect balance? So all I think about during the launch strategy is getting to page one organically. I'm not concerned about profit. Now, I usually can't, you know if I'm not launching a super competitive niche. I can usually get to page one within a week and then at that point I start maybe rate if I got, if I started getting my Vine reviews or other reviews, I might start raising the price up and take my foot off the gas. But I'm usually going really hard and heavy. Even if I get to the top of page one for 10 full days, even if I got to the top of page one after only 2 or 3 days, which happens sometimes in my launches.   Bradley Sutton: All right. So I try to go really hard and heavy at least 10, 10 days to help me stick my landing more, and then at that point it's a matter of all right now do I start to try and rank organically for my secondary set of keywords and then I just do it all over again. I still go really hard and heavy and losing money. Now if after 30 days of launch and losing money and putting a lot of money in PPC, I'm not getting the conversions I need organically or maybe I'm getting bad reviews, I have to. I have to like, kind of like, take a step back and look at what am I really doing Right? What am I doing wrong? Why am I not sticking my landing? Why are people not converting? Or why is my listing, not converting even though I'm at page one, all right. So these are things that you have to start considering, you know, after 30 days or more of your launch. Great question by Alex says how would you do your A-B test for your image against competitor images on Amazon search result pages?   Bradley Sutton: All right, so what I would do? Let's just say I was doing this large coffin shelf. Well, I'm not going to take a picture of the Helium 10 widget up here, right, I might take a screenshot. I would have to take away this previously viewed of this whole image right here, from the top of the image all the way down to the price, potentially right. And then I would make that an actual image, right? And then I would go ahead and choose a couple of the main competitors and take that same spot. And then you say, hey, you searched for large coffin shelf and these were the 4bmain search results you saw at the top of the page. Which one would you select and why? And always, I'm going to get comments on not just the image. Sure, I'll get comments on the image. But then some people are going to comment on the price, some people are going to comment on the reviews and the star rating. And then now you can understand how people kind of like navigate the search results a little bit more by using the Helium 10 Audience there.   Bradley Sutton: Joan says a little bit more by using the Helium 10 Audience, what do you test show if you have six variations? Well, you want to pick which one is the best-selling, right, because that's probably what's going to be in the search results. So, for example, for coffin shelves, I've got three variations, right. I've got a black one, I've got a purple one and a pink one. I do not test the purple and pink ones why? I know even before day one of when I launched my coffin shelf, the black one is the one that sells the best for everybody else and it's the one that shows up in the search results right. Now if I was doing some super, super niche tests where I was like, hey, I just want to test my pink coffin shelf versus other pink coffin shelf, sure I could do it, but in this situation I'm only going to test the black coffin shelf because I know that is the one that sells like five to one over the other ones, and that's the one that is the one that shows up in search results for everybody's listings.   Bradley Sutton: Kim says would you also recommend doing A-B tests on infographic images or is it more useful, important for the main image? All right, this is a great question. And then Kim says essentially have you found your conversion improved by testing infographics? Yes, okay. So remember I said I was only talking about one thing today, which is improving your click-through rate of the actual images. And remember I said at the beginning hey, we're going to assume that your conversion rate is going to stay the same and I showed how much your sales could increase just by improving your click-through rate from the search results. But you can take the opposite. Let's say you already have a fully, fully optimized main image and price point and title and your click-through rate is not going to improve. Well, what's the other thing you can improve? You can improve your conversion rate. It's the same exact thing almost. I mean not as much of a scale as the click-through rate, but if you can improve your conversion rate by 3%, right, that means if you get 100 clicks a day, you get three more orders if you improve your conversion rate by three.   Bradley Sutton: So it's the same thing. So maybe, if you think the infographics can make a difference if it's not optimized. Absolutely, that should be something that you can test. All right, I always want to start with the thing that moves the needle the most and that's the click-through rate. Because, remember, if I improve 3% click-through rate on a thousand impressions, that's a big difference compared to changing the conversion rate by three, right. You know, on something that only gets 100. So you want to go ahead and split test your A+ content. Split test the things that are inside of your listing, your bullet points, like I've done that before. I show screenshot of bullet points and then Photoshop in other bullet points and then see what people think. Absolutely. All right, guys. Hope you guys enjoyed this episode. We're going to go ahead and shut it down soon. We did a live test of Helium 10 Audience. I showed you how to use manager experiments in Amazon.   Bradley Sutton: I really hope I got through to you, because I'm looking at numbers of how many people use Helium 10 audience or how many people are using PickFu, and it should be 100% of private label sellers Literally should be, but it's not anywhere close to that or what people are using. So if you don't have Helium 10, use PickFu. If you've got Helium 10, you've already got it right there in your Helium 10 Audience tool. Make sure to do that If you've never run it. Go to your number one selling product and get some variations of the image you know based on what else is selling, or compare your image to your competitors and get some insight, guys into how your target audience is interacting with your images and price and title in the search results. And if you're launching a new product anytime soon, always have your graphic designer give you three or four options of main images and then split test that first before launching your product. So hope you guys found this beneficial. Thank you guys for joining and we'll be back next month for another. Ask Me Anything, but if you're a Serious Sellers Club member or Helium 10 Elite member, we'll see you either next week or the week after, since we do this every single week. Thank you guys very much and enjoy the rest of your day or weekend. Bye-bye now.
6/4/202435 minutes, 49 seconds
Episode Artwork

#566 - Amazon Listing Optimization Masterclass

Join us on our latest journey through the innovative world of AI-assisted Amazon selling! We kick off with the transformative capabilities of Helium 10’s Listing Builder tool. Listen in as Bradley guides you through the intricacies of crafting the ultimate Amazon listing, utilizing cutting-edge tools with the power of AI to enhance searchability and PPC effectiveness. We also unravel the secrets behind the Listing Quality Score, ensuring you leave with the knowledge to make your product stand out in the Amazon marketplace. Discover the future of e-commerce imagery with our dive into AI image generators, perfect for your lifestyle main images, Amazon Post, and all A+ content formats. Bradley also shares his personal experience in creating stunning visuals, emphasizing the prompt-writing process to achieve images that could even eclipse the originals. In this conversation, the power of keyword optimization comes to life as we import vital search terms into Listing Builder, setting the stage for an Amazon algorithm-friendly listing. Whether you're a seasoned seller or new to the game, you'll gain invaluable insights on making your product shine. In our final chapters, we tackle the craft of creating and optimizing Amazon listings with the assistance of AI. Bradley walks you through the process, from studying competitor listings to tailoring the tone of your product description. The strategic use of keywords is front and center, as we focus on targeting specific audiences and enhancing product visibility. We wrap up with a look at how to optimize listings against competitors and discuss the advantages of syncing listings directly to Amazon. With these strategies at your disposal, you're well on your way to mastering the art of Amazon listing optimization. In episode 566 of the Serious Sellers Podcast, Bradley talks about: 00:00 - Mastering Helium 10's Amazon Listing Builder With AI 03:39 - Optimizing Keywords With Listing Builder 07:52 - AI Image Generator and Listing Creation 09:53 - Generating and Editing Amazon Listing Images 13:35 - Optimizing Keywords and Competitor Analysis 14:43 - Creating Amazon Listings With AI 21:22 - Optimizing Keywords in Listing Creation 25:11 - Understanding Amazon Keyword SEO Score 33:10 - Optimizing Amazon Listings With Listing Builder 33:41 - YouTube Keywords Analysis for Listing Optimization 40:38 - Creating Amazon Posts Efficiently with AI ► Instagram: instagram.com/serioussellerspodcast ► Free Amazon Seller Chrome Extension: https://h10.me/extension ► Sign Up For Helium 10: https://h10.me/signup  (Use SSP10 To Save 10% For Life) ► Learn How To Sell on Amazon: https://h10.me/ft ► Watch The Podcasts On Youtube: youtube.com/@Helium10/videos Transcript Bradley Sutton: 10 strategies that's going to help you craft your best Amazon listing with the help of AI, as well as even image generation and more. How cool is that? Pretty cool, I think. Hello everybody, welcome to another episode of the Serious Sellers Podcast by Helium 10. I'm your host, Bradley Sutton, and this is the show that's a completely BS-free, unscripted and unrehearsed organic conversation about serious strategies for serious sellers of any level in the e-commerce world. And this is another one in our series of Seller Strategy Masterclasses where I go deep into one of the Helium 10’s tools that helps with a specific use case, and today we're going to be talking about Listing Builder. That's why I got my LB hat on right here. So we're going to be talking about everything from how to check the SEO score, about how optimized your listing is to the Amazon algorithm potentially, to how to generate images for Amazon posts, how to generate captions for Amazon posts, how to write a listing from scratch without even AI, how to use AI to write a listing in any language that you're trying to make for a new marketplace. How to import listings, how to export listings and sync them. We have a lot of strategies today. Hopefully, I don't have to split this up into two episodes. I don't even know how long this is going to take me, but this is going to be a lot of great information today that you're going to be needing in order to make your first or next listing on any Amazon marketplace that Helium 10 works on. So let's go ahead and hop into it. Bradley Sutton: Let's first talk about an introduction and overview to just Listing Builder tools so you can kind of get to know it and understand how to navigate in it. So, Listing Builder if this is your first time going into it, the way you can navigate there is through your list in under listing optimization in your menu and then hit the Listing Builder button. Now, if you've never had Listing Builder before, you're not going to have any listings here. I've got a few here because I've already obviously made some listings and done some test listings here in Project X. But this is the main dashboard when you sign in, where you're going to be able to view all of the listings that you are editing here in Listing Builder. And then there's different filters up here, like if you want to see, hey, which ones are the ones that are linked to Amazon listings, which are the ones that are synced to Amazon listings. We're going to talk about what that means later. Now one thing right off the bat is if I want to add a listing, I hit this button at the very top, add a listing. And here is where I can actually go directly to the image generation with AI tool. So there's going to be a specific training on how to use this. But if I just want to hop in and say, hey, I don't want to make a listing right now, but I want to be able to take one of my images and create something with AI, you're going to be able to do that. I can also create a listing from scratch or optimize an existing listing that I might have already. Bradley Sutton: Now, the core functionality of Listing Builder is just as the name sounds it's to build listings. So, in Listing Builder, this is a place where you can start writing your title, your bullet points, your description and even your backend generic keywords, and, if your listing has it, you can have subject matter here as well. Now, why even make a listing in Listing Builder as opposed to writing in Seller Central? Well, it's about the keywords. Obviously, Helium 10 is known for our keyword research tool like Cerebro, Magnet, etc. You've probably utilized it to get the best keywords for your product or niche. Well, what you're going to want to do is import all of those keywords to Listing Builder. I'm going to show you how to do that in a later strategy here. Now, by having all of your keywords here in Listing Builder, now you can make sure that you're using it in your listing. There's a line that comes through every time you use it. It even tells you how many times that you have used those keywords and also it shows you all the individual keywords that make up those phrases up here at the top. So again, this is so important because you could have the best keyword research in the world. But if you didn't put that keyword in your listing, are you going to be searchable for it? Are you going to be able to run PPC on that keyword? Probably not, because you're probably not even going to be indexed. Bradley Sutton: Now, some newer features of Listing Builder that we're going to talk about is listing quality score. There'll be a strategy about this, your keyword performance rank. You know I developed a formula over the course of like six to eight months where I launched tons and tons of listings and I was able to try and get as close as I could to the kind of way to optimize your listing that is most beneficial for the Amazon algorithm in ranking, and so we developed a formula so that this score will go ahead and reflect how optimized your listing is. So I'm going to show you, throughout these strategies, how to use that score to make sure that you've got the most optimized listing compared to your competitors. Now, if you have a diamond plan, you've got access to those listing scores, as well as also the ability to build your listing with AI. Bradley Sutton: All right, now, who might this AI feature before? It could be. Maybe you, like me. If I'm selling in Amazon Germany, I don't speak German. I can use Helium 10 to get all those German keywords. I don't even know what those keywords maybe mean. I can actually write a perfect sounding German listing with AI, even though I speak English, by writing English into Listing Builder and putting all the German keywords I want to rank for, and this Listing Builder will go ahead and use AI in order to write all my title, bullet points, et cetera, using those important keywords I want. Another use case might be well, maybe you're a native speaker of the language that you're trying to write a listing in, but you've got writer's block. That happens to me sometimes. Right, where I'm like man, where do I start? I want a different vibe, right? Well, in this Listing Builder AI tool, you put the description and everything, and then you can say, hey, I want this to be a humorous vibe or educational, or empathetic or inspirational, et cetera, and then this will go ahead and create your listing in your own language, but maybe you're not going to use it exactly, but at least it gets you on the right track and like, ooh, I like the way, I like where the direction this is going. Let me go ahead and hop in there and kind of like tweak it a little bit so you can do that for your listing, or even make a Amazon post captions as well. So a lot to kind of like, you know, tackle here in Listing Builder. We're going to have a total of nine, 10 strategies now that I'm going to show you how to do a lot of the things I just alluded to here in this video. So let's go ahead and hop into it. Bradley Sutton: How to create images for Amazon using AI. Why is this important? How can it make you money? Well, in the past, you know, our only option was to maybe take you, you know, rudimentary, kind of like ghetto looking images with our phone or something like that, or pay a lot of money if we had it, you know, for professional pictures. That's still what I do, actually, but not everybody has enough money to be able to invest in professional photography right off the bat, or maybe we did, but then now we're like, oh man, I have this other idea for an image, or I want to do this or that, right. Well, that's where AI can come in, because AI can help you create different images. Now there's a lot of different kinds of images that AI can help you with. Now our AI image generator. Let me show you what it can do. It can create main images for your listing. It can also create images in the format of Amazon Post, which is a different format than a main image. You can make A plus logo images, A plus image header images all the different A plus module types of images you're going to be able to create using this AI image generator. You also would be able to make images that are designed for best viewing on a mobile browser. Bradley Sutton: So what is the process for this? I actually pulled up a listing here of a competitor product. All right, this is a coffin shelf. That is not my coffin shelf, but I saw a couple of his images and I'm like you know what this very well could have been done, maybe with AI, or maybe he paid a lot of money for this picture. And so, like I'm like, is it possible for me to duplicate this image that this guy has of his coffin shelf on this wall? You know, for those listening to it on their phones, I'm trying to describe it here. It's just a picture of a coffin shelf on a gray wall. There's like a plant on the ground, um, some books on the table, et cetera. Right, so I just downloaded his main image of his coffin shelf and then I went ahead and started writing this prompt so, so this is the prompt I wrote. Now, what I could have done is I could have just, you know, chosen a theme here and a theme setting, but I went to go in and make a description, so I put here hey, the pictured shelf is hanging on a light gray wallpapered wall, includes subtle decorative elements such as a small plant, a few simple artwork on the surrounding wall, separately from the main image. All right, I have things such as the product scale. This is the size I want the product to look like in the image. I can have things like a void, what I don't want to see in the image. I can choose different engine models stability, ai or AWS, bedrock, titan. What is the AI style? I chose photographic. I could have chosen comic book, digital art, anime, analog film, 3d model, et cetera, and then basically let's go ahead and see what happens. You know I didn't put too many details here. Bradley Sutton: Let's hit, generate images. All right, here we go. This is what has shown up. I got four images it put. A couple of these are pretty decent. I mean, arguably, these images are maybe better than what this Amazon seller was using. You know, like this is not a good resolution that I'm looking at right here because I'm not zoomed in, but you know, I would almost say it's better than this image that this best-selling coffin shelf is using right now on their listing. So now, if I want to use it, I just go ahead and download this and I can go ahead and upload this to my listing. All my previous images are going to show up down here. This is just scratching the surface and maybe you guys are better at making prompts than me. You can even use ChatGPT to help you make a prompt to generate some higher quality images. But if you're looking to make, you know, take one image and make it in the format for A plus content or Amazon post, or change out backgrounds. You know, maybe you're doing a holiday theme, you know, for one of your listings and you want to put, like, some Christmas ornaments or some Halloween things or whatever. This is a way that you can just do it without having to like have a reshoot. So hope you enjoy using that feature. Bradley Sutton: How to import keywords into Listing Builder. Why is this important? How can it make you money? Well, this is pretty much the crux of using Listing Builder. Otherwise, you don't even need to use Listing Builder if you're just going to make your listing in Amazon Seller Central. But the whole point of Listing Builder is showing you, first of all, that you've used all of your main keywords and your secondary, supplementary keywords, your indexed for, and you've organized it in a way that is best for the Amazon algorithm. And that's what Listing Builder is going to help tell you. Where do these keywords come from, first of all? Okay, so that's a very good question, and you would hopefully have gotten your keywords from other tools, in Helium 10, Cerebro, for example, like let's just go ahead and say that I had done a search for bat-shaped bath mat and I had the 77 keywords as part of what I was going to target for my listing. Now you might have 100 keywords, you might have 150, you might have keywords that come from Google, you might have keywords that come from our other tools like Magnet or Blackbox. But let's just pretend that these list of 77 keywords is all we had. All right, I'm just going to go ahead and copy these to the clipboard. Bradley Sutton: And in Listing Builder. Now there's two places in Listing Builder where you can add it. You could just go ahead and add keywords here if you happen to get on this page, but I suggest doing it right here on the main first tab, which is add keywords for listing. I'm going to click on manually add keywords and all I have to do is paste all of the keywords right here. Then I hit the button add to bank and now all of those keywords are going to show up here on the right hand side. I'm going to see the search volume too. You might notice this CPS, that's competitor performance score. I haven't entered any competitors yet. That's why these are all blank. But this is now the list of all of my keywords, then it's all right here now on my main keyword bank, and what Helium 10 is doing here is it's splitting all of these keyword phrases there were 77 of them into one word, two words or three words, okay. So, for example, right now, by default, one word is chosen. So I see Gothic is a keyword that is in a lot of these phrases right here. We've got decor, we've got Batman, we've got witchy. Now I hit the two word roots. I can see home decor is something that is in some of these phrases. Three word, uh, three word roots. There's only one rugs for bedroom. That is appearing multiple times here in these phrases. But again, this is going to be the key because this is going to be your guide now, as far as hey, these were all the keywords that I found in my keyword research. I have to make sure that I get them into my listing. Uh, you know, the way the Amazon algorithm works is usually you're not going to be indexed for keywords that you do not have in your listing. All right, so again, import the keywords from wherever you did your research into Listing Builder, and then you're going to be ready to start making your listing. Bradley Sutton: How to import an existing listing into Listing Builder to edit. Why is this important? How can it make you money? Well, I've told you before that this is not just about creating new listings. You can also import your existing listing so you can start managing it in Listing Builder and making the updates inside and seeing how your SEO works. Another kind of strategy that I think is slept on is you can import your competitors listing into your Listing Builder. If you kind of want to see. Hey, how is their keyword density like where do they include certain keywords in their listing? Let me see how they have their SEO set up. Let me show you how you can do either of those. Right here in Listing Builder, I'm going to hit the button add a listing. All right now once I do that, I have three options create from scratch, optimize your listings or generate images with AI. Let me just show you what happens if I hit optimize your listing. It's going to be linked to my Amazon account. If you have already included your Amazon connected your Amazon account to Helium 10. And now I can just choose any one of my listings and it's going to go ahead and import it right here into Listing Builder. But, as I said before I can import anybody's listing. So, for example, here is a competitor bath mat out here. Maybe I want to see how they have their listing set up. All I have to do is copy the ASIN and then I hit create from scratch and then I choose the marketplace. So remember, I can go ahead and import a listing in Amazon USA, Germany, France, UK, Brazil, Belgium even didn't realize we had that India, Japan and more. This one is going to be from the USA. I'm going to go ahead and put the ASIN right here and then I'm going to hit start building. Bradley Sutton: Now, what Helium 10 is doing right now is it's importing the title, the bullet points and, if it's available, the description right into my own Listing Builder. So if I had a whole list of keywords now I'm going to be able to see hey, how do they have their listing all set up? Now, if you've got the diamond plan, you kind of don't need to do this, this kind of competitor checking, because we've got the competitor performance score that I'm going to talk about in a later strategy. But if you're just in the planning plan, you want to be able to have visibility with how your competitors have their SEO set up. This is the way to import their listing right into your Listing Builder and so, as you can see right here, I've got their product title, I've got their bullet points and no description, since they had A plus content. So, again, if you're getting started with your own listing ad connected from your own account so you can have a base here and just remember, Listing Builder is not just about making new listings. This is kind of like your hub where you can manage your existing listings so that later, when I show you how to sync them, it's going to be a lot easier as opposed to having to go back and forth to Seller Central copying and pasting. But even if you're not doing that, this is also another way that you can look at your competitors' SEO, with how they have the keywords placed and how many of the important keywords that you identified they have in their listing. Bradley Sutton: How to create an Amazon listing from scratch, with or without the help of AI. Now, why is this important? How can it make you money? I've said before that you know maybe you don't speak a certain language fluently that you're trying to write a listing. Well, you can get help from AI. Maybe you do speak the language fluently, but you have creative writer's block right that we all have sometimes. You might need AI to help get you started. Or maybe, hey, you speak a language just fine. You just need a place to be able to write your listing with the help of understanding that you are using all of the keywords. Well, this is what I'm going to show you how to do in less than five minutes here. Now, let's just say you're going to go ahead and write a listing with the help of AI. Now you would have hopefully already put which marketplace you're going to write the listing in and, based on that, it's going to know it has to make the listing in English, Japanese, Spanish, etc. You can write the description for the AI in any language you want your own native tongue. Now for this situation, all I'm doing is just writing a listing for the Amazon USA marketplace for that bat-shaped bath mat, and remember those 77 keywords I had found in a previous strategy. Well, I've got them all here in my keyword bank, and now what I did was I have 500 characters where I can put as many characteristics as possible. Bradley Sutton: Now you can see I only use 161 characters. This is not going to be my real listing. I'm going to use I'm just doing this for demonstration purposes but some of the characteristics I put as different phrases is like bat shaped bath rug extra thick, 32 inches by 20 inches thick, chenille, fiber machine washable, water absorbent, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera. The other thing I can put is the brand name, and then, where I want to put the brand name, I also have here the product name. That's what is going to show up at the beginning of the title, and then I have here what's called the tone. So we have some preset settings where maybe you have a listing where you want it to be formal, or maybe you want it to be casual or empathetic or inspirational. I chose humorous because you know, I think you need a little humor if you want a bat shaped bath mat, right? Um, I also have target audience, so I put just a couple things here, like men and women who like gothic decor or people who want to buy gifts for spooky decor lovers. There's also a section here for words and special characters to avoid. Bradley Sutton: Now, the first thing you're going to want to do is you're going to want to go ahead and make the product title. Now maybe I want to definitely include my most important keywords in my title. All right, so what I'm going to do is I'm going to edit these keywords that I'm definitely going to include in the title and choose them from my keyword bank. Now one thing you could do is just kind of like use find keywords that are nested within each other. I've talked about that in other episodes, but in this case I just chose two words. I'm like saying, hey AI, I want to have these in the title Bat Rug and Spooky Bathroom Decor. Then all I have to do is I hit this AI write it for me button and it's going to take all of this information up here that I had put in and then take a look at the keywords that I entered in. You know I had put those from Cerebro and it's going to go ahead and create a title. Now take a look right here. It made the title right here just in seconds. It says spooky bathroom decor bat rug, non-slip, water absorbent, 32 by 20 inch bat shaped bath mat with thick chenille fiber, machine washable, no creases. The perfect gift for Gothic decor enthusiasts, Manny's mysterious oddities. So, basically, it wrote a pretty decent title for me If I want to use it. Um, I can go ahead and hit use suggestion. And now look what happens. Now that I wrote this here, there is now going to be a line on the left-hand side through all of the individual keywords that I now have in my listing and it's also going to show me all the keyword phrases that I have if I have used them. So, for example, remember I said use bat rug. There's bat rug right there. Spooky bathroom decor. It's got a line through it because I used it right here in my listing. Bradley Sutton: Same thing with the bullet points. If I'm satisfied with the title, I'll just move on to the bullet points. Hit the button that says AI, right for me. And now I have five bullet points that it made. Some of these say bat shaped bat rug, perfect for goth bathroom, this unique bat man rug. And if I can hit use suggestion and look how many, it's trying to use up all of my keywords in my keyword bank, both individual and the phrases, as much as possible, and that's how I would write my listing. That's AI and how it can help. Now, if you've got the diamond plan, that's how I suggest starting your listing and then maybe just tweaking it to make sure you've used all your keywords. What if you only have the platinum plan? You still can use Listing Builder and just write it manually. You would use it the same way. So basically, you would start writing your listing manually, trying to make sure that you are using all of the keywords in your listing. Like, let's just pretend I was going to come up with this bullet point right here and I start writing this gothic rug is great for Halloween decor, something like that. Did you guys see what was happening here on the left hand side as I was writing this bullet point? Well, it started crossing out the words that I am using. By the way, if you are watching this on YouTube, you can see. If I put my mouse over some of these keywords, I can see what are the search results, the top 10 search results for that keyword. It kind of gives you an idea about, maybe, how relevant it is. If I want if that's annoying to you, I wanted to turn it off I just hit the settings button up here and I can turn this top 10 ranked products keywords off. Bradley Sutton: But anyways, I would just keep making my listing, trying to make sure I have all of the individual keywords and or phrases. Now, remember, you've got to know which are your most important keyword phrases. All right, usually you want to get at least 10, 15 in phrase form of your most important keywords and then all the rest of the words to be indexed for the phrases. You just have to have the individual words, and that's why that root keyword section is very valuable. You know, hey, I just got to get these individual words once in my listing to have a chance to be indexed for all of those other keywords. So here is another great technique of how you can completely make your listing, with or without the help of AI, using Listing Builder. Bradley Sutton: How to measure your listing's Amazon SEO score. Why is this important? How can it make you money? Well, if you are trying to make a listing, you don't want to just keyword stuff. Right, all fields in a listing also are not created equal. If you put a keyword in the title, it's worth more than if you put it in the description. If you have a main keyword phrase in phrase form, it's better than if you just have the individual keywords from that phrase just in random spots in your listing. There's so many things that kind of like drives relevancy for the Amazon algorithm. Now, nobody knows the exact formula of Amazon, and if anybody tries to say they do, they're full of baloney right. But you know me, what I did for over eight months was I tried to study the algorithm as much as possible you know, launching hundreds of like fake products just to be able to see the effects on the algorithm when you change keywords around and so I was able to come up with our data science team this formula that helps sellers understand the effects of placement in the listings. But again, this is not like some exact formula. I do not have special insight into the Amazon algorithm. I can only make this formula based on my observations, but it's definitely going to help you for sure. Bradley Sutton: Now let's go ahead and hop in with how you can actually use this. The first step, if you want to have a listing score, is you need to go down here to listing analysis and then hit keyword performance rank and once you get there, you are going to have this button that says add competitors. Now, once you get to the add competitors page, you are going to need to enter in all of your competitors, like right now I'm in a coffin shelf listing and it already gives me like suggestions of which ASINs I can pick. But I suggest putting your own ASINs right in here. I entered, I think, like seven or eight ASINs and then, once I do that, instantly you are going to get a full score for your listing. Now, the reason why you didn't have a score before was because it's using the competitor performance score and the search volume to be able to know what your score is. So, for example, right here, my keyword performance score is 181,011. And I can actually see what goes into it. Bradley Sutton: There's different ways that it calculates your keyword SEO score. Like, if I have it an exact match, one of the keywords for my list, it's going to give me a certain number of points If I have it a plural or singular match. What does that mean? That means, like, if the keyword is spider web shelf but then I put spider web shelves, it's still going to give me points, but not as much as if I put the exact keyword spider web shelf. If I have it in phrase match, that's a. The keyword is Gothic, coffin, spider web shelf. Well, you can see here in the title I've got Gothic and coffin together, but then spider web shelf is way at the end of the title, I still have all the keywords. So that's what's called a phrase match, where maybe a part of the phrase is together and then the other part of the phrase is in a separate part of the same section. Then I've got field broad match. That means I can have a full phrase but it's spread apart with no two keywords together in a field in your listing. And a field means the title, bullet points or description, right, and then I have listing broad match. That means maybe I have a three-word phrase and then you know, one keyword is in the title, one keyword is in the bullet points, one keyword is in the description. That's called field broad match. Bradley Sutton: So as you write your listing, this score is going to change. So, for example, here's a keyword coffin decor that it says I haven't used an exact phrase form. Let me go ahead and throw it in my bullet points. By the way, you can see, my score is 181,000. Let's go ahead and put just randomly coffin decor right here in that first spot and then, yeah, look, I got a line through coffin decor and my score now went up to 183,000. So first of all, that just shows you can manipulate this score. So, like you know, technically you could just throw keywords anywhere and get the highest score. I would like to hope that you understand that that's not the point of this tool is to just try and get a high score at all costs. You can't just keyword stuff. Nobody likes that. But that's just to show you how that scoring system works. Bradley Sutton: How to compare your listings Amazon SEO score to competitors? Why is this important? How can this make you money? Well, you can optimize your listing to get the highest score that you want to get. But at the end of the day, your goal should be to have a more optimized listing than your competitors. And if you can do that, theoretically speaking, interactions with your listing is going to help you more than your competitors. Like, if I have the keyword coffin shelf an exact phrase and I've got a coffin shelf and I have got it two, three times in my listing, Amazon knows I'm very relevant. Somebody buys my product after the search of that keyword. I'm theoretically going to get kind of like more bang for my buck with that purchase, as opposed to somebody who might be just indexed for that keyword and they've got coffin in their title and shelf somewhere in their bullet points, all right. So that's the value of this score is you're trying to make sure that you are well optimized for SEO, especially in comparison to your competitors. So how can you do that? Once you've entered in all of your competitors and you've optimized your score, you're going to want to check this keyword performance rank of your competitors and right here, as you can see, you can see that this coffin shelf I have is number one. I've got a score of 181,011, and the other listings on this page or that I imported, they all have less of a score than myself. Bradley Sutton: All right, I personally don't look too much at the title ranking and bullet points ranking. That doesn't affect things too much, but it's right here, just in case you want to see it. So again, check this frequently, because this is going to change based on your competitor listings and you want to make sure that you stay number one. If you want to, just if you're wondering, hey, did this get refreshed or not? You can just go in here, delete them from your competitors and then add them right back to make sure that it has the latest version of the listing, but use this especially against your main competitors, to make sure that you always have the best SEO score that you can in comparison to your competitors. Bradley Sutton: How to check your keyword performance for your Amazon listing. Why is this important and how can it make you money? Well, you might not be able to fully see the effect of how your listing optimization has affected that score. All right, I showed you before. You could just go ahead and put a keyword in. You can see your score move up and down. But maybe you want to dive a little bit deeper to really get into the nitty gritty of what is going on in that score scoring system. This is how you do it. If you've got the diamond plan, you've got access to this button up here called keyword performance. So just hit the open keyword performance and it's going to open this thing at the very bottom. And now this is how you can use this section. It's very, very powerful. Uh, first of all, on the right hand side, I've got this section called root keyword usage and performance and it has all of those 72 root keywords, those single keywords that make up all of those phrases, right here, and it's interesting because I can actually see, um, how many times these are used in my listing, like, for example, the root keyword sick coffin. I've got 16 times in my listing and I could see oh, it's four times in the title, it's six times in the bullet point. Now here's a really, really cool thing what, in which keywords do I have coffin in it? I can hit this filter button and now on the right hand side I can see all of the keyword phrases that has the word coffin in it and which ones I've used and which ones I haven't used, and it says I've got 49 phrases that have used the word coffin, right, and then so here's one of them coffin shelf. If I look down here I can see, first of all, how important is this keyword. Well, it has a competitor performance score of 10. What does that mean? That means that most of the top competitors are all ranking for that keyword. By the way, that's an important metric to be looking at to understand how important the keywords are. I can see title match exact phrase and also I have it as a field broad in the title. All right, so I have that keyword right there in the title. It says I've got it in exact phrase form in my bullet points and I've got it in exact phrase form in my description. So I've pretty much maxed out the points that I can get on this keyword coffin shelf. Bradley Sutton: Here to the right I can actually see some stats about that keyword. Like, should I be focused on it? Oh, wow, it's got 2,500 search volume, 20 estimated sales for a keyword. It's got a title density of 25. It's got a brand analytics data right here. So this is pretty cool in that it's going to give me a lot of data about this keyword. If I'm ranking for that keyword, that rank is going to show up right here on the right-hand side. Now, this is a listing that is not even active right now. That's why it's not showing any organic rank. Take this other keyword here. Let's just pretend for a minute that this keyword coffin knife holder is super important for this listing. Obviously not, but instantly. Just by looking at this in a second, I could have identified that. Wow, this important keyword I do not have in any phrase form or long tail form or any form at all anywhere in my listing. And if this was an important keyword, like if it has a very high competitive performance score, that's a hole in my listing. Bradley Sutton: Another way that I like to do this that actually helps me with PPC is, as I am making my broad campaigns in PPC, I want to see what are the root keywords that show up most in my listing. Remember I told you coffin has 49 keywords, or 49 keywords it's in. I probably am going to make a broad or phrase campaign, PPC for the word Coffin because it has so many long tail keywords. All right, maybe Gothic. All right, Gothic has 11 of them, so Gothic is another keyword that potentially I can go ahead and use in a broad match campaign. So, guys, this is really what's going to help you understand what is driving that score, because it's going to tell you what keywords you've used, how you've used it and where you use it in your listing. Did you use it in exact phrase form? Did you use it in the plural form? Is it just in field, broad form? And if you have important keywords that don't have a good placement in your listing, it's going to be super easy to visually see which keywords those are and what part of the listing that it doesn't even have anything in it, so that you can make sure that you can go ahead and edit your listing and get those important keywords activated. Bradley Sutton: How to analyze your listing's competitor comparison table. Why is this important? How can it make you money? Well, you know, we've been talking a lot about just the overall score of your listings. We talked about looking at the keyword performance of your own listing. Now this is the tool that's really going to bring it all together. It's called the Competitor Comparison and now, instantly, you're going to see which ones of your competitors are really well optimized for certain keywords and which ones that you are extremely lacking on. Take a look at how easy it is to use this. If you've got the diamond plan, you're going to be able to hit this button up here called open Competitor Comparison, and once you do that, it's going to open up this amazing and super detailed chart. For those of you watching this on YouTube, you're going to be able to see all of those keywords that you had identified that you wanted to be in your listing, right? I've got 111 keywords here and now I can instantly see, all right, the most important keyword, the one that has a 10 score here in my competitor performance score coffin shelf I can see how everybody has it in exact phrase form. These are all my competitors and I can see hey, everybody's got it, except one person in exact phrase form in their title, right, I can see that this coffin shelf large. On the other hand look at this not one person has it in exact phrase form in any part of their listing. So again, if this was an important keyword for me, what I'm going to be able to take from this is wow, I've got an opportunity. Then if I put coffin shelf large, it means that I'm going to be the only person in this niche to have prioritized this keyword and have my listing optimized for it. Bradley Sutton: Same thing down here. I can just easily see the keywords that nobody has in any phrase form in their listing, myself included. Like here's another one a spider web shelf. Obviously this is not irrelevant, that relevant of a keyword, right, but I can instantly have seen if it was that it's a big opportunity for me, because not one person. Not only do they have it in phrase form, they don't have it in broad form, in plural form or any other form in any part of the listing. So I can just go through and compare how I have my listing set up compared to these competitors. Bradley Sutton: So again, these aren't the old days of selling on Amazon, where all you need to do is hey, let me just throw in all my important keywords. But it's also about where you're placing your keywords and how your competition is placing their keywords. How are they indexed for certain keywords? Do they have keywords in exact phrase form? Do they have it in plural form? What do you have? These are all things in this new world of selling on Amazon that you have to be considering that maybe you didn't consider back in the old days. And having a tool like Listing Builder here, and especially with the diamond plan so you can get access to these advanced features, it's really going to help give you a leg up on the competition where, all of a sudden, your competitors will be like how in the world is this guy beating us on these keywords that we used to be getting sales from and beating them on? They don't realize that you've got this secret weapon of Listing Builder. Bradley Sutton: How to sync your listing to Amazon? Why is this important? How can it make you money? Do you need to use an outside tool to sync a listing to Amazon? No, you can just edit listings right from Seller Central. But tell me this how many of you before have tried to edit your listing in Seller Central and sometimes it just doesn't update and it might not update until you use a flat file sometimes. Or maybe you have to open up a whole bunch of cases to seller support. Well, interestingly enough, you know, the Helium 10 Listing Builder is not like guaranteed to update your listing, no matter what kind of garbage you put into it, and it's going to overwrite something on Amazon. It doesn't always work that way, but it actually has a higher contribution status than if you were to just hit edit listing in seller central. I've had situations where I tried to edit my title or bullet points in seller central and even after 48 hours nothing happened. But then I do it in Listing Builder and I hit sync and within 30 minutes that update has processed. So that's definitely one of the reasons why it's good to use Listing Builder. Bradley Sutton: The other reason is just because if you're making your listings in Listing Builder, you want this to be the source of truth, right, and not to have to remember wait, did I go to Seller Central and then copy and paste one by one the different fields? If you don't have the diamond plan at Helium 10, that's what you have to do and there's nothing wrong with that. I mean, our first tool before Listing Builder was called Scribbles and you could not sync the listings. You had to go into Seller Central and copy the title, copy the bullet points. There's nothing wrong with that. But obviously, if you have a one button push to Amazon, that is what you're going to want to use. So here's how you can use that. The first thing you have to make sure is that you’ve linked to one of yours in your Seller Central account. And the way you can make sure that if you did that is this button up here. It'll say link to Amazon. If you don't have it linked, mine is linked, I already linked it to a certain SKU. So all I have to do is hit this button, sync to Amazon and it's going to update whatever I have. Now, keep in mind, it's going to overwrite whatever is in your seller central, all right. So just make sure that you have everything filled out in the right way. Bradley Sutton: Now, sometimes there are certain things that Amazon does not allow you to update. Like, some listings have more than five bullet points, right, if you, if I, had six, seven, eight bullet points, it's only going to sink the first five. Another thing that sometimes doesn't sink over is the subject matter, because not all listings have the subject matter available to be written, but it does allow you to overwrite the generic keywords here as well. Now, how long does it take to update after you have hit the sync button? Could be as quick as 5-10 minutes. Sometimes it might take a day or so. It all depends on how Amazon works. So, everyone, if you have linked your product to Amazon, make sure that you are syncing your listings after you edit it in your account. Now, how you know if it has been synced or not is go back to your regular page that has all of your listings, your dashboard, and it's going to show in the status right here if it has synced or not or if there is an error. You'll also have that message. So again, everybody, make sure to sync your listings. You've got the diamond plan and that's pretty much all you need to know about creating listings and looking at SEO scores and syncing them all the way to your Amazon listing. Bradley Sutton: Now, in the next strategy, I'm going to talk about something that actually you can do inside of Listing Builder but doesn't even have to do with your listing. How to generate captions for Amazon Post with AI? Why is this important? How can it make you money? Amazon Post, for now, is a completely free service. Think of it as kind of like an Instagram newsfeed, but for Amazon. Let me show you what Amazon posts are here. I just found a bath mat company and if I went to their storefront and I hit the button post, here are their posts. It especially turns up really well on a mobile browser. This one, obviously, is a desktop browser, but you can see that they have a lifestyle image of their product and then they have got a uh caption here for each one. All right, so you've. The best practices is to create an image every day here and then make this post. Now, as you can see here, products are linked here to these posts and so obviously, the main goal is to be able to get brand followers and then, hopefully, they see one of these posts, are inspired by it, they click the product and they purchase it and you're not having to pay for any of this. Now, as I said, the best practices is to make an image every single day and a caption every single day. That could be time consuming and maybe very difficult to do. Number one if you don't have that many images, how are you going to get a different image for 365 days out of the year. Well, that's, first of all, what you could have done with that other strategy I told you about in an earlier video, which is how to use Listing Builder to create the AI Amazon Post images, right? Well, what about the caption though? Right? Watch this. This is pretty cool.  Bradley Sutton: Now, do you remember earlier I had written, with AI, this listing that was a bat-shaped bath mat. Well, if I scroll all the way down, I can actually see Amazon post sections. All right, now there are five sections right here. I just have to hit this one button. Write it for me, all right, and within seconds, it's going to write five Amazon posts based on my listing, and boom goes the dynamite. Just like that, I've got five different posts that I could use, with five different images that I might have produced from my AI image generation. Take a look at one of these. Add a touch of the macabre to your bathroom with our bat-shaped bath rug, and even put like a bat emoji. Perfect for gothic decor enthusiasts and a spooky addition to your Halloween decor. It even had a hashtag here gothic decor and Halloween rug. Here's another Amazon post it generated within seconds while I was talking there. Step out of the shower onto our spooky non-slip bat rug. Make your bathroom uniquely yours water absorbent and machine washable Hashtag bat rug. All right, so within seconds I got five different captions. All right, so there's my one week almost all finished, and then, as I showed you before, if I just hit one, I can just do one generation of Amazon AI images for Amazon posts. I would have had four or five images like that. I combine it with these and I can have one of my VAs or employees just every day. Hey, go ahead and put a new post up and I don't have to take 365 pictures or 10 photo shoots of 36 pictures each. I don't have to pay a professional copywriter to write captions. So this is a really quick and easy way that you can create this content for nearly free. That is free on Amazon. So make sure to use these AI-generated Amazon post captions along with our AI Amazon post image generation in order to get those extra views for your Amazon store and your Amazon products and get those quote-unquote free sales that aren't costing you any PPC or any professional copywriting. Bradley Sutton: All right, well, I hope you enjoyed this Seller Strategy Masterclass, where we went deep into Listing Builder. This is the crème de la crème as far as a listing creation software that is out there in the space. So make sure you use every bit of what we went over today. And is there something that we're missing? Is there something you'd like to see? Make sure to let us know. We'd be happy to take all requests and the ones that get asked the most. We'll go ahead and integrate those into the tool. A lot of the features that you saw today come from our customers asking us for them, so I hope you enjoyed this episode and we'll see you in the next one. Bye-bye now.
6/1/202443 minutes, 56 seconds
Episode Artwork

#565 - A Seller With 20 Years Of Experience On Amazon!

Join us for an insightful conversation with a true pioneer in the online marketplaces as we journey through a remarkable 20-year e-commerce journey featuring Rolando Rosas, who has two decades of selling experience, including 10 years on Amazon. Listen in as we unpack strategies to amplify product reviews on Amazon, ensuring compliance with their stringent terms of service. The discussion takes a turn down memory lane, recounting our guest's rich personal history from Panama to the United States and an unexpected career pivot that led him away from the medical field. The e-commerce landscape is constantly shifting, and our latest chat explores how sellers must evolve to keep pace. We reflect on the transition from physical storefronts to digital dominance, discussing the necessity for adaptability in response to the surge in online shopper activity. The dialogue further reveals the struggles and triumphs experienced by our guest, as we navigate through topics such as profitability challenges, hybrid business models, and the utility of analytical tools like Helium 10 for pinpointing underperforming products. In our final segment, we focus on maximizing profitability through cost control and the strategic use of available tools. We talk about the potential impact of Amazon's forthcoming FBA fees and how meticulous inventory management is key to thriving in e-commerce. Rounding out our discussion, our guest Rolando Rosas offers his insights into maintaining an online presence and the significance of podcast collaborations, sharing his accessibility on various platforms and his journey with Helium 10. So, tune in to gain valuable knowledge from a seasoned expert who has navigated the e-commerce waters with agility and success. In episode 565 of the Serious Sellers Podcast, Bradley and Rolando discuss: 00:00 - 20-Year E-Commerce Journey 11:04 - Evolving Strategies for Amazon Sellers 12:44 - Adapting to Changing Amazon Strategies 17:24 - Optimizing Amazon Seller Profitability 20:34 - Sellers Discuss Zero Fees and Profit 22:51 - Strategies for Maximizing Profitability With Amazon 24:37 - Amazon Advertising Strategies for Success 28:53 - Strategies for Reselling and Private Label 29:23 - Cost Control and Profit Increase Tools 34:01 - Online Presence and Podcast Collaboration ► Instagram: instagram.com/serioussellerspodcast ► Free Amazon Seller Chrome Extension: https://h10.me/extension ► Sign Up For Helium 10: https://h10.me/signup  (Use SSP10 To Save 10% For Life) ► Learn How To Sell on Amazon: https://h10.me/ft ► Watch The Podcasts On YouTube: youtube.com/@Helium10/videos
5/28/202435 minutes, 31 seconds
Episode Artwork

#564 - Amazon Product Inserts 101

Unlock the secrets to boosting your Amazon sales without crossing the line with product inserts as we team up with our Freedom Ticket instructors, Kevin King and Rafael Veloz of Share It Studio. This episode is your ticket to understanding how to legally and effectively use product inserts to build your brand and keep customers returning for more. Ditch the confusion and stay ahead of the competition with actionable insights and real-life examples, including Kevin and Rafael’s success stories with calendar sales and customer-retaining newsletters. Prepare to transform your customer experience and drive repeat purchases with inventive strategies that resonate with your audience. We'll reveal the power of no-code apps as lead magnets, the smart use of QR codes, and how to craft calls to action that balance immediate sales with long-term loyalty. Rafael's Telly award-winning expertise shines as we navigate the nuances of customer engagement, ensuring your marketing efforts are not only effective but also compliant with Amazon's stringent policies. Wrap up with a toolkit of marketing finesse, from leveraging QR codes for product-related apps to utilizing calls to action that truly speak to your buyer persona. Whether it's offering warranties, discounts, or even prize draws, we've got you covered with legal and effective strategies that hook customers in. This episode is brimming with tactics and takeaways tailored to help you master the art of Amazon product inserts and skyrocket your e-commerce success. In episode 564 of the Serious Sellers Podcast, Bradley, Kevin, and Rafael discuss: 00:00 - How To Build An Unbreakable Brand With Product Inserts 00:59 - Advanced Amazon Product Inserts Discussion 08:57 - Leveraging Mail Leads for Calendar Sales 09:09 - Maximizing Sales Through Package Inserts 13:59 - Strategies for Amazon Product Insert Cards 18:10 - Enhancing Customer Feedback With QR Codes 26:35 - Amazon Review and QR Code Guidelines 27:15 - Prohibited Methods for Soliciting Reviews 31:02 - Generating Effective QR Codes for Customers 34:45 - Dog Treat Sample Pack Promotion 36:34 - QR Codes and Call to Actions ► Instagram: instagram.com/serioussellerspodcast ► Free Amazon Seller Chrome Extension: https://h10.me/extension ► Sign Up For Helium 10: https://h10.me/signup  (Use SSP10 To Save 10% For Life) ► Learn How To Sell on Amazon: https://h10.me/ft ► Watch The Podcasts On YouTube: youtube.com/@Helium10/videos Transcript Bradley Sutton: Is it okay to do product inserts on Amazon? If so, what can and can't you put on those? We bring on Kevin King and expert guest Rafael to answer these questions and more. How cool is that? Pretty cool, I think. Bradley Sutton: Hello everybody and welcome to another episode of the Serious Sellers Podcast by Helium 10. I'm your host, Bradley Sutton, and this is the show that's completely BS-free, unscripted and unrehearsed, organic conversation about serious strategies for serious sellers of any level in the e-commerce world, and we have our monthly special. This is called Seller's Edge, and this is actually a unique one, a new thing that we're doing, where we recorded live a module that's actually going to go mainly in the Freedom Ticket program about advanced Amazon strategy, and this one's going to be all about Amazon product inserts. There's a lot of misconceptions out there and so we brought on some people to talk a little bit about it. Now, the main core of this workshop that we did is actually in Freedom Ticket, all right. So. if you guys don't have a Freedom Ticket, any Helium 10 paying member has access to it. So, if you're a Platinum member, make sure to go into your Freedom Ticket account or your Helium 10 account and then hit Learning Hub. You can get the full details. Bradley Sutton: What we're going to have here is some clips from that training and then we're going to have a lot of the Q&A. What we did we did this live, where a lot of people were watching this training and they were giving a lot of questions like hey, what's okay to put in inserts, and can I send people to another website, and can I do this and can I do that? Kevin King got a little riled up there a little bit on some of the questions we were asking. So again, we're going to just give you some of their presentation just a little bit, and then mainly focus on the questions that you guys were answering. I'm positive. A lot of these questions are the same exact questions that you might have on inserts as well, so let's go ahead and hop into it. Kevin King: So I met today's guest Rafael around 2019, maybe 2020. But it was in 2020 where I really first got to know him. The guys over at PickFu actually came to me and said, hey, we're going to run this contest with like four different agencies and we want to feature your product. And at that time I was doing a hand sanitizer as a company called Germ Shark and I said I'm sure they said these guys are going to compete, they're going to create videos, they're going to create images, they're going to create A plus content. And then you get to go through it all, Kevin. You get to decide which one you like the best, and then it's up to you whether you want to go with them and pay them or not, if you, if you like it enough. And so, uh, Rafael's company, uh, Share It Studio was one of the winners. There was two, two companies that actually kind of came close uh, real close to each other, and one of them I liked one of their things and then them I liked the other thing, but a Share It Studio did the best job overall and they ended up creating a really a kick-ass video for us and a whole bunch of really cool content. So that's where I got to know him and you know this guy. His background wasn't necessarily an Amazon seller. He was a three-time telly, award-winning marketer and filmmaker, and then he decided to go out on his own and he saw this need in the Amazon space, where there's just not a lot of good agencies creating good, good imagery and video content. So in 2018, he founded Share It Studio and as a marketing Amazon specific marketing agency. Kevin King: Now they do a few things. It's not Amazon, but they focus on Amazon and it's they really want to set themselves apart, but not just saying, okay, we'll create some pretty pictures and we'll make some nice videos, but it's data driven. So they're actually looking at the data, looking at what it is that they actually need to do. What are the trigger points that are going to make people buy? Not just create a beautiful video that looks great, but what can they say, what can they do? What about those first three seconds? And just create a really custom, bespoke package of creative services just for Amazon sellers on the Amazon platform. They look at everything from. They do everything from PPC videos, premium A plus content, images, branding and a whole lot more, and they're really good at what they're doing so. Kevin King: Rafael is going to be coming on in just a minute and sharing us today specifically on package inserts, and before I bring him on, I want to talk about package inserts for just a second, because there's a lot of, what I believe, misinformation out there when it comes to package inserts. There's a lot of people that say you should not use package inserts on Amazon. You will hear that on Facebook groups. You will hear that from some of the people that help fight against Amazon. They say don't use package inserts, don't do it, you're putting yourself at risk. I 1000% disagree with that. 1000% disagree with that. I think there are certain things that you should not do on a package insert. Those anything you know people say well, you can't direct traffic off of Amazon. Bs, yes, you can. What you cannot do is put your package insert or your URL. If you read the terms of service carefully, Amazon says you cannot direct traffic off of Amazon, but that's on Amazon. That means that don't put your URL in your product photos. Don't put something in, don't email you know, using the customer follow-up something to take them off of Amazon. Anything on the Amazon platform in imagery or text. You cannot send them off of Amazon to do something that is against the rules. But when it comes to your package insert, all the big brands look at Sony, look at any of the big brands they have package inserts for warranty registrations, for accessories, for different things. It's totally fine in my opinion. But there is a line you have to draw and this is where a lot of people get in trouble and some people don't understand where that line is. Kevin King: You cannot do anything to influence reviews on Amazon, and that means in the old days people would say please leave us a five-star review, click here and they would take you to the review page. You can't do that. You can't put a smile and five stars. Five stars is a kind of a trademark icon of Amazon. That kind of indicates give us five stars. You can't do that. You can't say something like if you have trouble with this product, please email us. Don't contact the buyer, don't contact Amazon or contact where you bought it. If you have trouble, contact us. Otherwise, please leave us a review on Amazon. That's directing negative traffic to you, even though that's a good thing to do. You want to take care of the situation that's indirectly directing negative remarks that might have been a bad review to you. There's other ways to say that. You can say something like if you have any questions, feel free to reach out to us, something like that that has no indication of. If there's a problem or there's something wrong, we want to fix it. And I understand you're trying to steer bad things away and you're trying to be good, but that can be seen as as as a negative. Or what happens a lot of times is people will have some sort of innocent package insert and then they will, they will send that and send it to a warranty page or some sort of registration page and then in the follow up sequence so everything is clean, but in the follow up sequence there's something that's a little gray or shady and that's where people get into trouble too. So but if you're doing the package inserts right, and I think you're totally fine and there is a way to do them you know I get a lot of Amazon packages and a lot of times I throw the package inserts out. Kevin King: I mean, it's one of the first things. I used to look at them to see what other people were doing. But now, obviously, I probably get 20 Amazon packages a week. I probably look at one package insert and that's what Rafael is going to show you today is some ways to make sure that that yours is the one that I'm looking at, and there's a reason that I only look at. One is because most of them suck. They're little business cards or they don't have good graphics, or they don't catch my attention or they're buried in the package in the wrong place. There's a whole number of reasons that I don't look at where there's no value to looking at it. It's just a bunch of text, or they all look the same. There's ways to stand out, and I use a package insert, and my calendar business is one example that I like to give, and what I do is I put a four by six card in there and I say congratulations, you've won a free calendar. That's what the package insert says, and what that package insert then says, because I'm selling calendars. Calendars are like selling milk they go bad. Kevin King: So right now we're in May of 2024. Most people don't want to pay full price for a 2024 calendar. The year started five months ago, so it's hard to sell them. So if I have extra calendars left over, I got to get rid of them. I can throw them away, I can donate them somewhere, I can try to liquidate them, but what I do is I use my extra calendars as a premium and so I say congratulations, you've won a free calendar. Just pay $10 shipping and handling and you can go to my website and get the URL out there and enter this code to get the calendar for $10. Or you can send a check or money order in the mail. A lot of people send checks or money orders in a physical envelope in the mail to my post office box and it works really well and I get a lot of leads that way. What do I do with those leads? The next year I've got 17,000 people on this list. The next year, when my calendars come out, calendars are pretty much bought between mid-November and mid-January. That's the big two months that most of the sales happen. You're selling 400, 500, 600 a day of some titles, but in September people aren't really thinking about 2024 like last year, so they're buying like two or three calendars a day. But that's where I use my list and I send them out. Kevin King: If I have their email, I send an email and I also send a physical postcard through the mail to them and says hey, the new calendars for 2024, or, in this case coming up 2025 are out. You can buy them directly from me and pay $9.95 shipping and handling, or you can go to Amazon, if you're a Prime member, and buy them on Amazon and get free shipping. And what does that do? It allows me to launch my product completely with no PPC, no launches, no having to do Vine reviews, no, nothing. Because people go and I have four different titles and a lot of them. They buy all four, so that gets them in the frequently bought together. And then they also buy other calendars so they might buy a motorcycle calendar or something like that. So then I start showing up on these motorcycle calendars as customers who looked at this or viewed this or those sections. And I started this flywheel going and I'm selling two or three a day in September and I just ride that wave all the way up and I do zero PPC for these calendars. I do zero launch and that's the power of a package insert. And then I can sell these guys other calendars that are not available on Amazon. Kevin King: I do it for my dog products with a dog sample packs. I do it with a lot of things, but in nowhere in there and no my emails, nowhere do I ever ask for a review? Do I ever indicate five stars? Do I ever indicate anything that's manipulating the system? It's all above board and I've been doing this for 20 years and there's nothing wrong with it. Usually, if you dig deep and someone says I got in trouble for package inserts, I didn't do anything, look deep into their package insert or into their funnel and you're probably going to see that there is something that's a little on the edge there. So if you keep your nose clean and do this right, it can be powerful. And so Rafael is going to come on right now and he's going to spend some time showing you some really cool ways to actually do package inserts. Hey Rafael, how are you doing, man? Rafael: How's it going, man? Thank you so much for having me. I really appreciate it. It's an honor. Kevin King: Appreciate you coming on and doing this man, this is going to be great. I’m looking forward to seeing what you got. Learn a few things myself, hopefully. Rafael: All right guys. Thank you so much for being here. I really appreciate your time. I am the Founder and CEO of Share It Studio. Actually, my background was in law. I went to law school. I did four years of law school in Venezuela and then I went to filmmaking because I hated law so that's like a really little fun fact. And then I started working and I graduated from filmmaking. I started doing filmmaking, I moved to New York, etcetera. I worked in a lot of companies CNN, Nickelodeon and then in 2018, I was working for Nickelodeon and I decided to quit because I wanted to be an entrepreneur. I wanted to get out of that rat race, which I think a lot of us maybe were there and wanted to escape. So, yeah, so let's get started. Rafael: So this is a little bit of what we do at Share It Studio. I just wanted to give you a glimpse. I'm not trying to sell you anything. I'm just trying to give you a glimpse of what we do. So we only focus on creating content. Why I feel like a jack of all trades is a master or none. We like to specialize in one thing, one thing only, and anything that has to do with visual and visually enticing or visually manipulated. You could say a little bit that buy or that conversion, so anything that has to do with videos, listings, et cetera. So what are product inserts? You can read this, I know you can, but in my own words it's a way to give the customer more experience, right, to give them more value. The more value you give, the more value you're going to get in return. So it's a powerful tool, obviously, to enhance the customer's experience. You can request feedback, you can promote your repeat purchases. It's all going to depend on the product itself. It's the same thing to have a product insert for supplements for a hand sanitizer than for a garlic press, for example. Those are consumables. You can repeat them. The garlic press, you can probably buy one when it breaks. But if it breaks too fast, it means the bad quality garlic press, right? So, depending on your product, I would say try to steer and try to analyze and strategize that product insert. Rafael: Okay, let's keep going. So do's. Some basic do's. Deliver value. This is like just a general thing in life. Let's go into newsletters. I don't read newsletters. I find newsletters actually very boring or they're all the same. But I came across and I'm trying to plug this in in any way. But I came across one a few months ago which is Kevin King's newsletter right, the Billion Dollar newsletter and there's so much value that I actually enjoy reading them. That's because it's given me value, like a bunch of value. If it wouldn't give me value, I just would discard it, archive it or read it or delete it, et cetera. So make sure you deliver value. It's the most important asset. If you do not deliver value, you're not going to get anything in return. Some ways you can deliver value additional usage guidelines, care recommendations, general insights, coupons, customer experience. There's a lot, a lot of ways. Right, make sure you maintain informativeness, meaning that you are talking about your product's advantages or attributes on the product. That's dependent on the product. Again, these are all dependent on the product that you have. It's gonna. It's not a, it's not a one. It's not a cookie cutter, it's not a cookie cutter template, it's more of a. What do I have? What fits into this mold type of situation from my point of view, at least in my experience? Rafael: Encourage reviews. You want to avoid 100% encouraging any positive reviews or avoiding getting, or encouraging avoidance of getting negative reviews. Like Kevin said at the beginning, that goes against Amazon's TOS and, just like the taxman, the Amazon man is also going to find out at some point. Okay, so I would say, steer away from that. So politely, solicit feedback from the customers. As simple as your feedback matters could help. Extend support. Again, it depends on the product, but extend support If it's maybe it's a product that it costs I don't know a hundred bucks, most likely if that product is a little bit faulty or people don't understand that because it's hard to assemble, or something you can extend support, maybe a video, maybe a hotline, maybe an email I don't know something that gives them support. Um, cross selling if your product, you can match it with other products. For example, I'm going to show you an example in a bit of a baby product. But let's say you sell in the baby category and there's a lock and you're selling a lock um securing mechanism for the door for babies, right, and you and you can also cross promote the outlet protector for babies. So you know you kill two birds with one stone. Rafael: Don'ts. Avoid soliciting positive reviews, guys. Do not do that. That's like bad, bad, bad. Referring from cherry picking reviewers, such as what Kevin said, like hey, if you're having a bad experience, you know, come back and we can help you before you leave a bad review. That's a no-no. Steer clear from external links. Like Kevin said, Amazon wants everything in their ecosystems. What I've seen recently, though, is that they send them to a landing page, but the payment processing takes them directly back to the Amazon page. So what does that mean? That means that, from the product insert, it takes you to the landing page. You gather data from there, like the pixels, the Facebook pixels well, that's not Facebook anymore, it's the Metapixel, et cetera. Now you have marketing data from there, and then it redirects them back to Amazon. I've seen that recently. Eliminate misleading information, false hesitations, exaggerated claims, deceptive details. You want to be as transparent as possible and as truthful as possible. Remember, giving value is about being real, maintaining real, and abstain from manipulation. Definitely abstain from manipulation, because that's also you're trying to cherry pick that review. Okay, and avoid interfering with packaging. This is more on your end. You don't want to have a package that's extremely hard to open because of the product insert, because it's not going to give value to the customer experience, and customer experience is everything. All right. So it's a simple thank you enough. It could be, but you know it's there's not more, so it's basically wasting your money. Rafael: So if you want to win and if you want to actually get results, you should definitely take action. So things you should include you in your insert cards. Things I would include that we've included with our clients is warranties, how to guides, how to take care of the product, benefits of our products, guidelines, but it's going to depend again on the product. I want to make sure that everybody understands that it depends on your product. But, in summary, if you want to get value, you should get value. That's a rule of thumb in life. Actually, we should all get value in life, so we can get something valuable as well. So type of products, inserts or strategies. So review hunting that's like the most basic one, right? You want to get reviews. The most reviews you get, the better. I'm gonna show you some examples afterwards. You can put up a QR code and ask for feedback. You can use jokes, for example. So you put the joke and then you put the answer. Kevin usually actually does this. He puts stump bases in the beginning of the email newsletter and then at the end, he gives you the answer. This allows him, this allows that you read through the whole thing and then you have a reward at the end, which is kind of cool. So, for example, for this one, this is plainly emotional. Hey, scan this QR code and speak your mind. That's it. I just want your feedback, and your feedback means the world to us. It's very important. You're being sincere, trying to be as sincere as possible. Rafael: This is some of the content with this. For this seller, we also did that his packaging and he inserted it. And also, you added more value. He's not in a lead generator. So if you want to watch this video, it's time to install this. Watch this video, right? So you scan this QR code. Basically, it takes you to a landing page. It asks you for your email to unlock or to send the link of the video to that email. So, right there, you're getting more information. A simple joke is cool. So what type of candy is never on time? Chocolate, you get it, I didn't know. So ChatGPT helped us with that, by the way. So, yeah, so after they peel it, okay, and then, hey, since we're here, share your experience with our candies, and then they scan your codes. You know you're asking for it. All right, this is for stickers. Rafael: And another type of strategy is free purchase marketing. So there's a couple of things you can do. You can add custom coupons and you can add also cross-selling. So a coupon is you'll we all know what well, maybe there's new or sellers. Here's coupon is just basically a way that you give them something, a discount or, yeah, a discount for the next purchase or the new purchase or something, and cross-selling or it could be even an external coupon and cross-selling is when you promote something, another product, okay, based on that product, that at least simulates or in some way it connects with the main product that they just bought. So, for example this is the example I was going to give you it's a baby clear outlet plugs, right, and the baby toilet plug. So, welcome to Parenthood. Since you bought this, we want to help you. Here's more things that you can get and you're going to get these products. You head to storefronts and you get some offers from those products. Boom, so they're buying this, but they're also, oh, these guys also sell this, because maybe when they get this through their Amazon. They're like oh, I also need this. So you're cross-promoting that seller. Okay. Rafael: So list building it's extremely important as well. As we all know, Amazon is their own ecosystem and they have the last say in everything. So, like Kevin was saying about his calendars, it doesn't matter if he sells them on Amazon or not. He has a list. So Kevin doesn't even need PPC because he has a whole list already. So that's one of the things that you should be doing list building. So it's basically just as a gift. You can create a strategy. Number one is a gift. Basically, you create a lead magnet from your website or app and you just tell the customer like hey, you want this, we need this in return, and they gave you this, which is this well, you can ask for several thousand information, email, phone number, et cetera. Or strategy to a newsletter. You know, create a newsletter with interesting content to promote, to promote it and put it in your insert card. You're giving value. For example, we have a client that he sells bonsais. I didn't know this, but bonsais are very much. It's like a culture, like there's like a thing for bonsais and people are really into it. So they read newsletters, they read articles, they see videos, they watch videos. Part of this newsletter is giving value to them, so that's how they're building their list, also through social media. Rafael: This is, for me, the best strategy up to date, which is an app. Why? it's also going to depend on the type of product you have. But why the app? Because the app you're always going to have them there. There's nothing more intimate right now, technology-wise, than the phone for a human. It literally holds our work, our life, our secrets, our laughs. Like, if you leave your house without your phone, most likely you're gonna return back home just to get your phone, because it's literally a third arm that we don't have. So by having that, you have so much access to that particular buyer. For example, this is QR an app that it's going to help you, you know, work out and it's going to give you a workout. It's a workout app, right? This is the one I'm using for to get ready to for BDSS in Hawaii soon Kev. I'm just kidding, I don't have a six pack, so this app is going to help you that and there that you can promote also other types of products. For example, I have another app which is a scale. I bought a scale and that scale helps you track your weight through the app. And through the app, sometimes I get push notifications which is hey, we just launched this product, would you like to look into it? Or hey, we saw that you're hitting your fitness goals. We have this new product that can help you reach those fitness goals, et cetera. So there, you're going to give a lot more value. And what are they doing? They're just cross promoting, they're cross selling. So that's, I mean, I think that's brilliant. Rafael: Remember, one step at a time. It's depending on your level of being a seller. If you're in stage one and you just launched your product, focus on reviews. If you want to do everything at the same time, great. But if not, if you want to take it step by step, focus on reviews, then focus on repurchase marketing and then build in a list all right, but this is a must at the end. If you want to build a brand, building a list is a must. Another thing if your package is, you don't want to create it in any way possible, like you know, maybe you don't want to destroy or interrupt this opening process you can add it to a label like the top, because you all know that it can only be a sticker, for example, every bottle or not every bottle. Most of the bottles have a seal on top right, so if they have a seal, why not put it there? They either way have to open it up, so why not put your discount or give them that value there? For example, these are supplements. Hey, next bottle you get 50% off. If I like them, I'm going to use that 50% off coupon 100%. Rafael: So another thing that you could be doing, which I love this one is A-B testing. Marketing, just like life, it's not one plus one equals two. Marketing is just trial and error. Trial and error. Obviously, you're spending a bunch of money. You're investing a bunch of money into your future, so you want to mitigate that fail as much as possible. For example, when we were doing Kevin's videos for the Germ Shark, we ran like 100 pick food tests. We were actually the company that ran the most pick food tests. Why? Because we want to mitigate the most amount of errors as possible. We didn't come out of the studio we're like, oh, let's just create this, it's going to be a winner. No, we tried it out a lot of times. So what you could do is, in your packages you can have two QR codes and see which one converts the most, depending on your product. Again, and you know, get creative and that's it. Um for overachievers, make sure that you're evaluating your KPIs. So repeat purchasing metrics. Are they buying this again? Is this working? Is it not working? Brand loyalty metrics. Are they going back? Are they not buying back off Amazon influence, Amazon attribution, advertising and sales. Percentage of off Amazon sales. For example, Kevin gets a lot of off Amazon sales because he has that list right and that is it. Kevin King: That was good, good stuff, Rafael. I want to just do something real quick before we get into answering specific questions. Come and listen to what I'm about to say. You, absolutely positively, can send people out of the Amazon ecosystem. Okay, you do. You can put your social media links. You can put a link to your website. You can do that. Quit following for the misinformation that's all over Facebook that people are talking out their ass, that don't know what they're talking about are doing. Quit it. Quit spreading this stuff. I see this in the chat and it pisses me off because you're wrong. This is one of the reasons I created Freedom Ticket back in 2017, when Manny Coats came to me and said hey, do you want to create Freedom Ticket? One of the reasons I did is there's so much misinformation out there. Quit falling for it. You can absolutely do it. There's certain things you cannot do. Raphael showed you that Bradley just posted in there like you, don't want some people to go buy this on Target instead or Amazon's competition, but if you're going to create an app, that's a brilliant thing. You can create apps with no code software now, with AI, you don't even have to be a programmer. You can go and create a very basic app and say it's a great lead magnet, download this app. You know, he said he showed the example of the one that's for monitoring your weight. Um, which is probably a little bit more elaborate, but you can create a very simple little app. People are more likely to download a cool app that goes with their product than they are. Um, you know, if I'm doing dog treats, I could do a dog training app. You know it's got a few videos embedded in it and it's a great lead magnet. Kevin King: You can send people off. What you cannot do is anything around reviews or influencing reviews or something like that. But you can send people off, you can capture information. Just don't do anything that would hint at influencing reviews. That means putting five stars. That means saying leave us reviews and then putting five stars under it to say, kind of imply that you want five stars To say if you have a problem, contact us. Otherwise, go leave a review on Amazon. Don't do anything, don't offer discounts. If you leave us a review or if you do that, I'll give you a coupon. Don't do anything like that to incentivize reviews on Amazon. That you cannot do, and don't even do it on your own website, just so that there's no gray area there. But you can send people off and they can buy things on your website too. Okay, so I want to get that straight. Okay, so quit falling for the misinformation, quit. Bradley Sutton: All right, tell us how you really feel, Kevin. But let me start pulling up some questions. First of all, we answered Oleg. Oleg says Kevin answered my question before I even asked. That's perfect, all right. So let's just-. Kevin King: No, I think Kane says you can't. Yeah, they don't want you sending to other marketplaces, like that's what Kane just said here. You can go to your own website and they don't want you sending people over to Target or to eBay or over to a competing website. I would steer clear of that kind of stuff. Saying our product is available and you put the Amazon logo, the Target logo, the Walmart logo, that is a no-no. But taking them to your own website to do after-sale warranty, to get an app, to get some sort of other accessory for your product that's, an add-on to the product, or to grab a coupon for their next order on Amazon, all that is fine. Kevin King: Hope says that coupon codes last for 30 days on Amazon. Then you have to create a new one. So you can't. What you do is you put a, you create a QR code you can use Bitly or whatever your favorite QR code tool is and create one that goes to a specific landing page and then you update that page every 30 days. You create a new coupon and you just update the page. You update that page so that QR code stays the same. So even if your product doesn't sell for a year, you're updating the page, not the QR code to a specific place. That's an easy workaround. Rafael: Yep, and also not even coupon codes. Maybe you want to offer something new now, that QR code that Kevin's saying that you can update. You can do whatever you want with it. It's your QR code, basically. Bradley Sutton: I have one here. I know what I saw here that would have got this flag, but I just want I'm curious about what Kevin saw. Maybe you saw this one. But Maria says hey, I know somebody who had an insert that said let us know how we did Leave us a review on Amazon. We value your opinion. With a QR code below which said for a free book on the dangers of what their product was working to protect. Scan the QR code and Amazon close the listing, force the seller to remove these inserts. The seller did not ask for positive reviews. Is it not okay to ask for reviews at all? I know what I saw here, that that might have triggered it. What about you, Kevin? Kevin King: That's an incentive. You're basically I mean it doesn't directly word for word say it, but that can be read as an incentive that if you leave us a review, we're going to give you this free book. You can't do that. That's a no-no and that right there is an example of you've got to keep your nose super clean on anything around the words reviews and you're tying them together. They didn't say hey, go leave us a review and we'll give you a free book, but they tied them together in that same paragraph and you can read into that. That's kind of what they're implying. Don't do that. That will get you in trouble. As far as number of QR codes, I would never do more than two and put them on opposite sides of the page or opposite one at the top, one at the bottom, or opposite sides on the bottom so they don't get crossed. But I would never do more than two. One is best. You always want people to take one directed action. One action is always better than multiple and confusing them. But if you have a valid reason, you could put two, and I think that would. That would be okay. Bradley Sutton: All right. Mahak said how do I generate QR codes to direct customers? So there's, you know, any QR code generator can do it Helium 10 Portals. If you have access to Helium 10, you've got access to Helium 10 Portals you can create the QR code there. You know, Rafael showed some examples of QR codes in his presentation, but pretty much any QR code. Rafael: And also Mahak, it's not just creating the QR code. Make sure it's something like Kevin said, like it's in their face, like they want to see it, they want to scan it and it's not just like scan this, because most likely they're not going to scan it. You want to get, I would say, 5%, 10% of those QR codes scanned at least. If you're getting less than that, you should re-evaluate how you're presenting that insert packaging. Kevin King: Hope what you just asked is a no-no. Can I ask for an honest review in an email follow-up after they enter the review on a landing page? No, don't do that. Basically, Amazon will see as like you're filtering reviews. So you're saying, go leave us an honest review on our own landing page. They're typing it and, even though you made the confirmation page, may automatically say, uh, please, uh, you know, be kind and post this to Amazon or somewhere whatever. Amazon could see that as that you're filtering. Like if they left you something negative, then you're not asking them to do it, and if there's something positive, you are asking them to do it. So don't, don't do that. You can ask, you can say on your we love reviews, please leave us an honest review. That general wording by itself, with nothing else around it. Any other stuff about a free book or something is like way down the page or somewhere else or not even on there. That should be okay. You got one um. Bradley Sutton: Marcy says how many QR codes per insert do you think is acceptable? I've got one for my YouTube and one for my Facebook group. I want to add one for man. She wants QR codes all over the place. I want to add one for a 10% off, a coupon with an attribution tag so I can get the brown referral bonus. What do you guys think? Kevin King: Uh yeah, I just answered that. I said don't do more than two, don't do more. Rafael: Okay, I would present it. Marcy, maybe I would present the 10% in a different way. Maybe not a QR code, maybe it's just like literally just a code. But again, that does expire, like Kevin said. But I'm with Kevin 100%, I wouldn't do more than two. Like you saw in the light bulb example that I gave you, there was one at the top, one on the bottom. It wasn't next to each other, because it can get tricky like that. You want to separate. Even the color was separated in the package. It was like a different color in the background. So you want that separation as well. Kevin King: Tadara is asking can we add samples of other products and inserts or offer to send free samples? Yeah, you can add samples as an insert, especially with little accessories. Here's a free. If you're selling something sewing, here's a free button kit. Or here's a free bead kit or something. You know we have 16,000 other colors available on Amazon. Here's a free sample as a gift. You know there's little gifts like that work. I mean there's a video. Rafael will understand this there. Back in the day before that everything was digital, I had to order to do all of our video production. We had ordered beta tapes and we had ordered these big beta tapes, uh, and HD tapes, uh, these, you know, they're big like squares that you put in the big cameras and we'd order them out of this company in Philadelphia and every time they would send me these, these packages, uh, with my shipment of 10 tapes you know these tapes were like a hundred dollars a piece or something I would get two little packages of M&Ms, like you see at Halloween, the little, tiny, little sample size packages of M&Ms, and during the summer they didn't put those in there because, but instead they put a note sorry, due to the heat, these might melt, you know, and so they wouldn't put them in and it would always tick me off that I didn't get those two little packages of M&Ms. These are, you know, 20 cents. But the fact that I would get those in there was a thing so surprising people with a gift can be great. Kevin King: Another thing that I've done with a power to insert on my dog products is I've offered us I've had where I sell antlers, I sell bully sticks, I sell duck treats, I sell a variety of other dog treats, and what I'll do is I'll make a sample pack and I'll say get a free sample pack of all of our seven dog treats on Amazon that we sell on Amazon. I'll put a picture of the Amazon listing photo and actually you know and put it, put it on there and say we'll send you a sample pack with this along with a coupon. Just pay $7.95 shipping and handling. It costs me like $4 to send it out. $3 basically covers the cost. I send them a sample pack through the mail. That way. They have to give me their address, they have to give me their phone number because I'll say this is for how we deliver delivery, updates and shipping tracking numbers is by phone, so give me a valid phone number and then we send that sample pack out and in. There is a sample pack, and then there's a coupon that says get this on Amazon. I mean 20% off your first order, your first bag, use this coupon, it works really well. And then I capture their name and email address and I'm driving stuff back to Amazon. I'm creating this whole circle and it works really, really well. Rafael: Amelia has a good question. Bradley Sutton: So Amelia said here can you improve our current package design? If yes, would the insert card and the package design be connected to our current branding design and what would the creative process be behind this? Rafael: okay, um, I don't want to do any sales right now, but yeah, we can help you. But just in case, um, the insert, I would say that you do need to, um, to keep it harmoniously, um, I would say like it should be aligned to your branding. That's why it's a branding. It should be aligned to your branding. And if you can actually put it within the packaging, maybe you wanna save money in the insert cards and you wanna put it on top of the lid of the box or something like that. You could do that depending on your budget. So many questions that I have to be able to answer that correctly. But, yes, and the process you do it is what I was talking about. You should have understanding the product, the niche, the buyer persona, their needs, their troubles, their fears, everything that you can gather from them and give them to that, okay. So maybe if it's a fitness product, I'm trying to get fit for BDSS. Okay. So for me, it was getting something to help me maintain my weight scale, understanding where I should eat, what time I should eat. So when I was looking through products to help me with that, the insert cards or the products like the hero images gave me that it was like, oh, this scale has an app. It was through the hero image. I was like, okay, let me check this out, and that's how I got hooked on that scale. So yeah, I hope that answers your question, amelia. Bradley Sutton: All right, we got a question from Joseph, who's got a scenario here. He says all right, I've got this QR code. Says something to the effect of learn more about the benefits of our product here. Takes them to an about page on our brand website, which website is also a Shopify D2C website that has a shop page. Is that permissible? Kevin King: That's a gray one right there. Um, I would that. That's a gray one that one could be seen as either way. Um, I would probably, if I would probably, cordon off that Shopify page. Uh, I think Shopify allows you to do this. I think Esther Frystone has a landing page that goes on top of Shopify that allows you to corner off the rest of your Shopify site, like to focus it on a single product. Um, I mean, if they get creative and they hit a bunch of buttons and they might go back to your homepage, but I would avoid any confusion there. That's a gray one. Rafael: A question really quick from Henry. He says that all products need to have warranties. I'm not saying that your product shouldn't have a warranty, definitely if you want to include warranties. 100%. But what I'm saying is that what's going to take action to scan that QR code? Is it going to be the call to action for a warranty or is it going to be a call to action to like hey, for your next product, if it's a vitamin, for example, that you know they're going to repeat the consumption, here's 10, 15% off. I'm not saying don't include it, of course, 100%. If you want to include it, I include it. But when you say the call to action, what's going to be that action that's going to make them scan it? Is it going to be the warranty or is it going to be, depending on the product? That's what I'm trying to say there, just in case. I don't want to make any confusions there. Bradley Sutton: I was just saying Lance is wondering how to get in contact with Rafael. You can be connected directly to them at hubhelium10.com and just type in ShareIt Studio. They're all over social media as well. Rafael's on LinkedIn. If you're in Helium 10, the easiest way is just go to hubhelium10.com and enter ShareIt Studio and you'll be able to even see. Maybe if you're a certain member of Helium 10, you might get certain discounts with them as well if you're logged in on that page. Rafael: If you're seeing this, this is my insert card. If you're seeing this, if you say Bradley and Kev are the best, we'll give you a really good discount. Bradley Sutton: There we go. I like that. Kevin, you had a question you said you wanted to answer, or was it someone else? Kevin King: I just saw one. Someone said they're doing a. Where did it go? They offer a 100-pound Amazon voucher prize draw each month. It's an image or video tagged on Instagram or TikTok. Each image uploaded gets one entry in the drawing. Opinions, please. Yeah, I don't see any problem with that. That should be totally fine and that's good marketing. Yeah, so you should be totally fine with that. Rafael: Angela Reategui. I hope I'm not butchering your last name, Angela. She asked can I include a QR code for free e-book? Uh, yes, we've done it with clients, especially in the home and kitchen, like food sector. It's worked really well with them. Uh, so yeah. Kevin King: Kane's like says can we offer discounts only on Amazon? Can we offer coupons for our own website? Um it, you can offer a coupon for your own website but, like for accessories or something, I wouldn't do it for the same product. I wouldn't say, come and buy, you know this exact same product. Or you don't want to do stuff where you're putting people into their, into your flow. You know, if it's a subscribe and save type of product, Amazon's probably not going to like it too much that if you're trying to get them to come to your subscribe and save on your Shopify site versus you're on Amazon, that that's a gray area, and so I would. I would just stay away from something like that. But offering them a discount hey, you know you just bought this blender. We have an accessory kit. As an Amazon customer, you get 20% off. It's not sold on Amazon, it's only available directly from us. Then yeah, that should be fine. Bradley Sutton: All right. Well, guys, thank you for all the great questions. We're going to be back here next month with another guest, Rafael, Kevin. Thank you so much for joining. Don't forget to reach out to Share It Studio, hub.helium10.com. All right, guys, hope you enjoyed that training. Don't forget again, the full, actual detail of the training, without the Q and A and all that other stuff, is in the Freedom Ticket course. So go to your learning hub inside of Helium 10. And if you have no idea what Freedom Ticket is, want to get more information, just go to h10.me/ft for freedom ticket. And let us know if you're watching this on YouTube or somewhere else. What other advanced topics would you like us to do? A deep dive, Q & A and bring an expert on with Kevin? Let us know in the comments below if you're watching this on YouTube or another place. Until then, we'll see you guys in the next episode.
5/25/202441 minutes, 53 seconds
Episode Artwork

#563 - Amazon PPC Bid Management and Dayparting Tips

Is the Amazon marketplace's tide too strong, or can new and seasoned sellers still navigate the choppy waters of Amazon PPC to find success? Join Shivali Patel, along with Matthew FitzMaurice from Pacvue, as we chart a course through the intimidating yet rewarding seas of Amazon advertising. This TACoS Tuesday, we're not just talking shop; we're equipping you with a compass and map to master keyword research, manage bids with precision, and understand the rhythms of dayparting that keep your budget afloat and your goals in sight. Amazon's landscape is dominated by PPC, but that doesn't mean getting organic sales from your campaigns is a lost cause. We share a lot of tactics for enhancing retail-ready content and fine-tuning your bids to catch the eye of shoppers sailing by. Learn how to stay vigilant on the metrics that matter—CPC, impressions, and click-through rates—while also steering the helm of your PPC campaigns with the discerning eye of a captain deciding when to lower sails (daily budgets) or adjust course (bids). Our discussion also offers insights into managing the choppy waters of high-cost keywords and understanding when it's time to make a strategic retreat. Our final topic dives into using Amazon advertising to claim your market share. We uncover the secrets of sponsored product placements, brands, and display campaigns, aided by the navigational tools of Helium 10's Adtomic and Pacvue. Whether you're launching a new product flotilla or reinforcing the fleet of established offerings, we're here to help you sail smoothly through budget considerations, historical data analysis, and the essential practice of continuous testing. All hands on deck—this episode is a voyage to the heart of Amazon advertising success. In episode 563 of the Serious Sellers Podcast, Shivali and Matthew discuss: 00:00 - Amazon PPC Q&A and Ad Strategies 05:53 - Optimizing Keyword Campaign Performance 06:57 - Strategies for Boosting Organic Sales 11:37 - Optimizing High-Cost Keywords in Campaigns 14:09 - Optimizing Keywords for Market Share 16:41 - Keyword Performance Evaluation and Decisions 17:01 - Optimizing Amazon Advertising Performance 18:59 - Analyzing Sponsored Product and Display Performance 20:16 - Optimizing Sponsored Display Campaigns for Success 23:35 - Optimizing Keyword Campaigns for Efficiency 25:53 - Maximizing Amazon Campaign Performance 28:19 - Automations in Advertising Platforms ► Instagram: instagram.com/serioussellerspodcast ► Free Amazon Seller Chrome Extension: https://h10.me/extension ► Sign Up For Helium 10: https://h10.me/signup  (Use SSP10 To Save 10% For Life) ► Learn How To Sell on Amazon: https://h10.me/ft ► Watch The Podcasts On YouTube: youtube.com/@Helium10/videos Transcript Shivali Patel: Today, on TACoS Tuesday, we answer all of your PPC questions live, while also discussing the nooks and crannies of bid management, day partying, different ad types and so much more. Bradley Sutton: How cool is that? Pretty cool, I think. If you're like me, maybe you were intimidated about learning how to do Amazon PPC, or maybe you think you just don't have the hours and hours that it takes to download and sort through all of those sponsored ads reports that Amazon produces for you. Adtomic for me allowed me to learn PPC for the first time, and now I'm managing over 150 PPC campaigns across all of my accounts in only two hours a week. Find out how Adtomic can help you level up your PPC game. Visit h10.me/adtomic for more information. That's h10.me/adtomic. Hello everybody and welcome to another episode of the Serious Sellers Podcast by Helium 10. I'm your host, Bradley Sutton, and this is the show that's completely BS-free, unscripted and unrehearsed organic conversation about serious strategies for serious sellers of any level in the e-commerce world. And this episode is our monthly live TACoS Tuesday show, where we talk about anything and everything Amazon, Walmart, PPC and advertising related with different guests, and today's host is going to be Shivali Patel. Shivali, take it away. Shivali Patel: Hello guys, this is Shivali brand evangelist here at Helium 10, and we are back with a TACoS Tuesday episode. You guys are in for a treat. I know you have plenty of advertising questions and we have a special guest expert here to answer those questions for you. So with that, I'm going to go ahead and bring on Matthew, who is here with us to answer your questions. How's it going? Matthew: Good Thanks, how are you? Shivali Patel: Good, good. Thanks so much for jumping in. I know people have plenty of questions to throw your way, so before we really jump into those questions, I want to talk a little bit about you. Do you want to tell us a little bit about your background, what you do here at Pacvue and your, I guess, history with advertising. Matthew: Yeah, yeah, absolutely. Yeah, I'm Matthew Fitzmaurice. It's nice to meet everybody. I initially started in traditional advertising at a local agency in Baltimore where I live, very focused on kind of account management there, had exposure to social campaigns and kind of the traditional out of home. It was interesting. And then I kind of found my way into e-commerce and kind of felt it to be more relatable honestly, just like being on Amazon so much and just kind of interacting with different brands and products on what I felt like was a deeper level. So that's kind of how I got my start in e-com. I've been in e-com in general I guess for probably four years now, specifically managing mostly PPC campaigns kind of at the enterprise level in some form of an agency to client relationship. It's been the majority of it. And then I have loved my time at Pacvue. Leveraging the tech has been fantastic. I think it is absolutely best in the industry. Helium 10 has been a fantastic add-on as well. So it's been awesome, it's been great. Shivali Patel: Amazing. Yeah, I know advertising is really the bread and butter for so many brands and businesses and so being able to understand that or have a really good pulse on it is so important. So I know, because there's so much that goes into the advertising metrics and monitoring that what would you say are some underlying factors that really affect PPC that you want to keep a pulse on? Matthew: Yeah, I think goal setting is huge. I think understanding what you're trying to achieve allows you to set the framework really appropriately for any campaign, for any platform, for any retailer. So I think for me it really comes down to understanding the end goal, and I think contextualizing what those KPIs are tracking towards is also really, really important. Shivali Patel: Now we already have one filing in. We have Kristy asking Hi, I have a product and sell to retail but worry that the Amazon fees will be too expensive. Is it too late to be successful on Amazon? So I would say no, but I want to hear your side of things as well. Matthew: Yeah, no, I totally agree. I don't think it's ever too late, I think, obviously, understanding what those fees are associated with. I know there's a lot that goes into it and fees can get out of hand quickly with Amazon based on packaging, shipping, the list goes on and on. But I would say, do as much research as you can try to understand what those thresholds are and what your capacity is. And I would say, obviously, once you're in Amazon and in the network, the upside is large. So I would say, not too late and definitely give it a try. Shivali Patel: I would definitely agree there. I think it just depends on if you know where to look, and there's certainly plenty of opportunity there. Amazon's growing year over year All right, well, in other news of PPC. So we said it depends on the goals. Right, going back to that conversation, and you're looking at keywords. So how would you say you kind of tackle keyword research for, I guess, a new seller as well as for somebody that you're auditing an account for? Matthew: I think there's a lot of ways you can go about it. I think the way that I always start is kind of in the mind of a shopper how do I look for the product? What are the things that I'm typing into the search bar to say, hey, how do I find this? I think Amazon is being used more and more like a Google or you know being or not that many people use big probably, but probably more like a Google right, where people can search and interact with products and do some almost preliminary research just on Amazon without having to go to Google. So I think, try to stay in the mind of a shopper, kind of as you're getting going and then from there, Helium 10 has some fantastic tools. Magnet is something that I use frequently looking at search volume, looking at competitor ASINs that are on similar terms, things like that to kind of get a feel for the category. Any add on that you can kind of have from the Helium 10 tool, even in the search bar within Amazon, gives you related terms based on search volume. If you're in Seller Central there's SFR, things like that. So I would say, use those tools as much as possible, but try to stay in the mind of a shopper and experiment. You can run auto campaigns and run different reports to generate what kind of new keywords are being pulled. So I mean, the list goes on and on. But to start, I would always say think like a consumer. Shivali Patel: But even on that note, let's say that you see you want to rank for a specific keyword and you're ranking at the bottom of a page, right, and you want to get back up to the top. How would you really go about changing, maybe the campaign that you're looking at? For example, when is a good time to negative match a keyword? Matthew: Yeah, it depends how specific you want to get with your actual campaign, but negative targeting can be really helpful if you want to be very, very laser focused. I personally am a huge fan of exact match keywording. For me, I feel like I have the most control over it. I know exactly where my ad is going to place if, obviously, you win the auction. But for me I definitely will default to the exact match and then from there, I think, understanding what my budget limitation is, leveraging things like day parting and trying to get the most out of every dollar. So that way my ad is serving as efficiently as possible on the right times of the day to kind of get that engagement and then drive up organic rank. Shivali Patel: We have Daniel asking what would be the effective strategy to boost our organic sales for our product. Currently, 60% of their sales come from PPC sales and they want to get their organic sales to improve more than their PPC sales. Matthew: Gotcha, yeah. So this is a common problem. Amazon and a bunch of other marketplaces are becoming increasingly more kind of pay to play, if you will, where the majority of the sales are going to come from, those top four sponsor placements, which makes it competitive, can make it very expensive, and driving that organic sales share up is really important and I think really some of the things that I've done that have been helpful is kind of, you know, adjusting some of the more you know quote unquote retail-esque metrics, making sure your page is retail ready. Having content developed that is bulletproof is as good as you can possibly make it, and then kind of coupling that with that PPC strategy of making sure that your bids are targeted to exactly where you want them to be. If strategy of making sure that your bids are targeted to exactly where you want them to be, if you're casting a really large net, it's difficult to gain that relevancy. So I'd say, be prescriptive where you know you want to be and then from there just track how you're progressing up the page. And then you know always I would say always test. So test things like day parting schedules, test things like different bid multipliers to see what it takes to get out the page and then from there I would just kind of keep iterating and keep making little tweaks and trying to refine that as much as possible. Shivali Patel: Definitely. I think split testing is a large part of it, and then refining that based off what you're learning. What metrics are you really looking at when you're considering day partying and doing all the split testing? Matthew: Yeah, I think again, it kind of depends on the goal. But if the goal is just strictly for organic sales, what I'm looking at is kind of cost. I want to see what those CPCs are. I want to see kind of what the relevance of and kind of try to determine what the right to win is for my product in those particular campaigns and the particular auctions. So looking at CPCs, looking at impressions, looking at clicks, click-through rate, things like that, just to kind of see what that level of engagement is mostly. Shivali Patel: Okay, and I see we have another fantastic question from Joy that says I'd like to know in which case I'd like to lower the daily budget and in which case I should lower the bid. I want to understand the difference in situations when to lower the daily budget and when to lower the bid. Matthew: Sure, yeah, I think a lot of times they go hand in hand. I think if there are strict budget restraints that are preventing you from spending to X amount or a budgeted cut, or you need to pull money from one bucket and put it into another, the budget transition would be the most concrete. I think what happens when you start decreasing bids within a campaign is those bids out over a certain period of time will kind of almost naturalize if that makes sense, where you can have a campaign budget be, this is extreme, but say $15,000, and many of the keywords within one campaign can have lower bids, higher bids, but kind of have room to kind of breathe and almost live and go up and down day to day. I think if there's one-off cases where it's like we need to pause ads, we need to get this off, you know the listings as quickly as possible. Reduce budget, reduce bids, and then that'll pretty much suppress from an advertising standpoint how visible that is. And then I think in terms of when to increase, kind of on the opposite, if you're finding efficiencies and kind of finding where that keyword sweet spot is and what time of the day in particular you have the strongest right to win and when CPCs are reduced a little bit, that can be a really good strategy to kind of minimize the overall cost and make sure that you're getting the most for each click. Shivali Patel: When you're talking about, you know every keyword has different bids, so how do you really determine how many keywords you're putting into a campaign structure? Let's say you're looking at a new account or even an old account. Where would you like to see a cap for certain keywords or ASINs? Matthew: Yeah, I've done a lot of testing around this. Actually I've gone as low as two keywords a bit a campaign. One keyword as high as 50. So, I think it depends. I think when you increase the amount of keywords that are in a campaign you obviously run the risk of people clicking on them and then the cost going up. So I think there's a bunch of different ways to break that out where you can have kind of a priority campaign with your priority keywords. That might be five to 15 of your keywords that you definitely want to be advertising on, that are really important to driving your business. From there you can kind of have a secondary bucket where it's kind of the nice to have so you can kind of keep the bids a bit lower, don't necessarily need to win those placements to be driving the bulk of your sales. And then you can kind of have the expansion type of campaign where there might be more keywords where you're just testing to see the validity, which can maybe move up to the next bucket and then up to the priority bucket if they tend to do well. So it just depends on, kind of, I think, what you're trying to accomplish with each campaign or your overall strategy. But I found that to be really helpful, and kind of understanding those top priority terms I think between five and 15 keywords has been the sweet spot for me. Shivali Patel: Yeah, I think pretty much the same, even for my campaigns. All right we have. When the ACoS of a targeting keyword in a sponsored product campaign is high, how can I determine when to lower the bid or turn off the keyword entirely? Matthew: Yeah, good question, and this is something where it's going to be somewhat category dependent. There are some categories that are just wildly competitive, like vitamins, supplements, things like that, just one that comes to mind. Some of them are naturally going to be high. This is where I would kind of weigh out what that difference is, or kind of what your threshold is, and what I mean by that is basically if your sales are still growing, if your business is still growing and there's a couple keywords that may not be the most efficient. That's kind of the risk reward of like, how far do we push? Are the sales new to brand sales? Are you gaining incremental sales? I know incremental is one of those buzzwords but it is really important when you're considering do I lower a bid? If it's a really high search volume term and you're getting new eyeballs to your page, it might be okay to kind of let that run a little bit below the overall goal. But from there, ensuring that the rest of your campaigns are built out for efficiency and making sure that you're getting those sales and conversions where people are relatively determined to get your brand is going to be equally important in keeping the portfolio ACoS where want it to be so I think, use it as a guardrail. I don't think it's going to be the end-all be-all. I think it's an important part of the overall strategy that you're deploying, but if it's driving your business in the right direction a little bit of a high ACoS is something that could be tolerable, but if it simply is just tanking that campaign and is not driving the sales, then I would say that's probably when to pause. Shivali Patel: I think tolerable is a good word for it, because it does come down to risk tolerance as well as where you are in your seller's journey. I mean, if you're a little bit in the beginning, right, you're going to potentially have higher ACoS because you're still trying to get the clicks and the conversions and you don't necessarily have the social proof there. Matthew: Yeah, with new products too, it's tough to break into that kind of relevance threshold and work your way up the page. And yeah, for new products it's definitely a fine line. But I think just keep testing and keep reducing bids, keep increasing, keep trying to kind of remake how that campaign is structured. Shivali Patel: Definitely. Travis here asks how do you usually find a balanced approach to setting bids for keywords? Is there a happy medium for higher bids that get more exposure versus lower bids that provide a high return on your spend? Matthew: Yeah, I think this kind of goes into the conversation we just had. So a good example for some of the campaigns that I have. I break them out by category and branded and competitor and auto, all single ASIN, all exact match. Just is how I tend to run it. So I think it gives a very, very accurate read of what's happening with each bid. For some of my products that I would say are the big business drivers, I have a much higher tolerance to say. I can live with these bids being higher for this particular product, this particular ASIN and within that campaign there's kind of its own little ecosystem of these three keywords within this campaign drive 80% of my sales for this campaign. Those three I'm okay if the ACoS or ROAS is a little bit down from where I want it to be. In terms of some of those lower flighted ones, some of the longer tail keywords where it's not necessarily the core of the product, or the highest SFR ones. Those ones I'm okay with letting the bid be a bit reduced and those are going to be more of those efficiency finders where people may be putting in something that isn't the first kind of snap ready come to mind term for the particular product. So I tend to skew a little bit higher on the bids for the keywords that I know are driving the bulk of the sales. Shivali Patel: We have a question on how to increase market share further. They run sponsored and sponsored brand ads, product and brand ads. We use 80-20 rule, so is there something you can share on that? Matthew: Yeah, in terms of overall market share, I think it's important to understand how many campaigns that you actually are running. So the 80-20 split I think is very, very fair. It makes a lot of sense. I think sponsored product is going to be the core obviously of the business driving placement, so definitely would skew heavier towards that in terms of the overall market share. I would also take a look at what your competition is doing. Where are they winning kind of? Where aren't you winning? I think there's a lot that can kind of go into some of that exact match keyword. I'm not sure how your keywords are set up, but if it's phrase or broad, it may not be as focused as you want. And I think also when you're talking market share, you can go all the way down to the keyword level, get super specific where, if you're looking at, say, three keywords that drive the majority of your business, those are the ones that would really focus on kind of increasing and even reshifting the overall budget to kind of have, you know, that bigger chunk to those really important business driving keywords. I think that might be a good way to kind of also reshape the way we look at market share a little bit, but I would just try to capture again the most amount of sponsored product placements on the most important keywords that you have available, and just the consistency is going to be absolutely critical for that. I know budgets can change, things change, business happens. So the more consistent you can be with that strategy, I think it will start to increase over time. Shivali Patel: So you mentioned the most important keywords. On the alternative side of that, there's obviously keywords that aren't doing so hot. So Fernando asked when do you think it's enough to pause a target keyword when there's no sales happening, no PPC orders? How many clicks is enough? Matthew: Yeah, clicks is a tough one to measure. A lot of it depends on, I would say, search volume. If it's a really low search volume term you probably won't see the clicks or the sales kind of as a bit of a result. If it's something that has historically been like a top performer and it's changed, I would say that's kind of maybe warranting a test of let's pause it, let's try something else, let's try a different keyword or a group of keywords. I think sales for me is always kind of the north star and kind of the rest of those KPIs that we look at around them are good guardrails to understand how the overall business is achieving that sales goal. So I think if sales are very low, I think it's probably safe to say that that's okay to pause. But again, if it's something that's been tried and true in your strategy, I would try to rework it. Maybe even if it's an exact match, try phrase match, try some PAT targeting similar products on those keywords and see if there's any life left in it. But I think if clicks are low, like below 30 to 40 a month, I think that's probably a good time to reevaluate what the bids are and kind of just take a deeper look at what that keyword's actually doing. Shivali Patel: You are absolutely killing the questions, so I want to interject here with a question of my own before I continue with the questions that are being asked. So what sort of level would you say a seller needs to be to consider Pacvue as an advertising solution? Matthew: I mean the tool itself, I think can be beneficial for any budget. I've managed budgets that are in the hundreds of dollars a day as well, on the app or on the tool, and it's been seamless. I think there's a lot of data that it provides you that is incredibly painful to find in the actual UI and it's clunky, it's difficult. The way that Pacvue has it organized is very customizable. It's very streamlined and you can really find the answers you're looking for and really customize those pages to basically be driving to your key business goals, which it's effective, and I think it's been a total treat, honestly, to be able to work with it every day. I've really enjoyed it. So I can't speak highly enough about it, but I think, regardless of what your budget is and what your goals are, I think this tool would be a benefit for sure. Shivali Patel: OK, and with that, Michael asks can you elaborate a few of the most looked at report format sponsored product, sponsored brand and sponsored display? Matthew: Yeah, I would say for a lot of the stuff that I'm looking at I'm probably pulling the raw data and looking for how I want to twist it in terms of what I leverage in the actual Pacvue tool. A lot of the kind of the home dash screens of kind of giving that initial read of what's happening, are helpful. But what I always find helpful is just kind of for sponsored product and sponsored brand specifically, kind of breaking out by product group or by brand or however your business is situated, looking at it by brand kind of the big, big metrics like spend sales, CPC, ROAS, conversion rate. I love to see that kind of at the sponsored product and sponsored brand level. I also love going through targeting type. So pulling targeting type with branded category, auto conquesting, pat and kind of evaluating that way as well and layering the two on top of each other then is incredibly helpful to get a read of what's happening, kind of at that 10,000 foot view more or less depending on the time frame you're looking at. But I think that's a good place to start and then from there kind of whittling down, going into the actual campaigns and pulling data that way. For Sponsored Display, I've always used it as kind of a nice to have. It's typically a little bit lower performing, but I think what it offers is the reach and I think from that side of it, looking at clicks, impressions, click-through rate, that's typically what I would be pulling to analyze the sponsor display campaigns I run. Shivali Patel: Sherry asks with the Helium 10 Adtomic function, how can I see, excuse me, Helium 10 Adtomic tool? How can I see visually when I change a bit, to know if the impressions are picking up over time? So you can go into Adtomic, go to the Analytics page or the Ad manager and then go to your campaign and target, put in a date range to whenever you made the bid change and then check out your daily impressions and then change the date to afterwards and check that as well. You can also go into Keyword Tracker and check out how your sponsored rank has changed as well. Okay, next question, what PPC strategy do you recommend for a newly launched product in a competitive niche? Matthew: Yeah, for this one I would definitely say pick the keywords that matter most to you. Focusing on those, I would say test out the CPCs, see what you're actually kind of going up against. From there, PAT targeting is incredibly helpful. If it's a brand new category, it's a definite cheaper rate for basically, the way that I describe PATs generally is kind of the nice to have, but it can be very, very strategic. Pick the number one product in the category, pick the highest organic rank and put a PAT on those particular ASINs and go where the eyeballs are going and you'll get it at a cheaper rate. You'll be on their PDP, kind of at the bottom of that carousel ad which is going to be lower volume in general. However, it's going to be a really, really good way to kind of have that brand recognition. I'm not sure how consumable the product is or if it's something that is, you know, like a subscribe and save option or kind of like a replenishment is high. But if your brand is being put next to those top performing brands in the category, it's at minimum when you are serving on those sponsored product placements. There's going to be that recognition which is going to be critical. So I would say, try to establish yourself on some competitor PDPs through product attribute targeting campaigns. From there also if you have a variety of products, your advertising sponsored brand campaigns can be really beneficial because you get to show 3 products for one campaign more or less, or one placement. CPCs can be a little touch and go there as well. But I would say, start there. Leverage your auto campaigns as well. Try to build relevancy. Continue to run the keyword reports from those auto campaigns, see what's winning and keep your pulse on search volume and just go after a couple of keywords hard for a while and I think that should help build up whatever niche you're in. Shivali Patel: Adam's question is in terms of testing new strategies like dayparting, do you suggest we start a new campaign or just make tweaks to existing ones? Matthew: Yeah, I'm a big fan of keeping existing. I think that the algorithm is going to reward campaigns that have been live longer and there's going to be more data behind the campaign. You're going to have just more context to pull from. So I would say, keep your existing campaigns and just continue to iterate off of that. If it's day parting, in particular, if you're looking to expand into further testing, then I'd say probably would warrant a new campaign. But for day parting in particular, stick with what has the most data, because then you'll, when you go to compare what your changes are, you'll have a much larger sample set to say, did this work versus what we had before? And I think that's where I would go with it, just in terms of the evaluation part. Shivali Patel: If I want to reduce wasted spend on broad campaigns because there's a lot of wasted spend on single click keywords. Should I start making exact campaigns to harvest my profitable keywords, or should I keep them both running and see what performs better? My main concern is that if I shut off my broad campaigns, my exact campaigns are not going to perform as well. Matthew: Yeah, really good question. I mentioned a couple of times. I'm a huge fan of exact match keyword campaigns. I think you have complete control over everything in terms of what's in your campaigns, what your bids are, so I am a huge proponent of it. I think again, at minimum it's worth a test. I think broad serves a purpose. I think it can generate keywords. It can kind of help you at least get the product visible. Whether or not it's always a one-to-one is a little bit tough to kind of determine. But I would say, look through your broad keywords and what's being pulled in. Some of them are very, very far off what you want to be. So I would say, pull back on spend. As you've kind of developed your PDPs and your content and kind of your relevancy on some of those keywords, I would pull back from that broad and move more into the exact and from a performance standpoint I would expect it to perform well because you are targeting exactly where the sales are coming from at a very prescriptive level. So you then would have complete control over how much money you're funneling to that and kind of how aggressive you want to be. So I think it's definitely worth a test at minimum. Shivali Patel: Hello Gonzalo. We have how many clicks on a keyword target without sales before closing it, lowering bids or dismissing it? Matthew: Yeah, I would say evaluate what keyword it is. If it's a long tail low search volume term, then I think probably pretty safe to keep the bids either very, very, very low or pause. If it's a really high priority term for you, I would say stick at it for as long as you can tolerate the cost and see if there's a way to break through and become more efficient if the auction dynamic changes at all. But I think a lot of it's going to come down to how high that search volume is on the term, but I would say if it's driving sales and your desired ROAS is like $3 and you're at a $2.15 or $2.20, I think it's worth pursuing it. Again, I say sales is kind of the North Star here. So I would say before pausing anything, evaluate kind of what it's doing for your business and then move forward from there. Shivali Patel: Eric has a question that says for a well-known brand with large global media spend but brand new to Amazon, how would you structure all Amazon campaigns to maximize performance on a $5,000 per day ad spend for five products? Matthew: Certainly starting with sponsored product placements, and I would say breaking into the category terms is going to be absolutely critical. If it's a well-known brand, that brand recognition piece, which is very difficult to build, that box is checked. So I think that's a huge benefit and then just really trying to find those areas where your shoppers are looking for you is going to be really, really important. So I would skew pretty heavily towards sponsored product category campaigns, probably get an exact match and I would have for your five products five separate campaigns for those, and then I would also layer in some branded campaigns. I think this is going to goes back to which I had about it earlier. But if someone searches for your brand and they don't see you, that is an immediate missale and obviously not a great shopping experience. So I would say have some branded campaigns as well to layer on. And, depending on what that overall cost is going to be between those two ad types, definitely work in the auto campaigns, keep those low. And then, depending on how much you have left over and if you have creative assets, sponsored brands are going to be huge with, just again, kind of putting those products on display, giving your brand a little bit more of a real feel for people shopping. I know it's difficult to kind of attain that on Amazon a lot of the times, but lifestyle imaging, sponsor brand videos is something you can leverage as well, and I've done a ton of testing with the AI generative media creative within Amazon and I would say, if you don't have creative, try the AI tool. It's really, really interesting. I could go on for hours about it, but it's a really really good way to kind of get some sort of creative live for sponsored brands. So I would say kind of to kind of recap that, definitely sponsored product category campaigns, one, followed by some smaller budget branded campaigns with auto campaigns, and then expand to sponsor brand if you have the budget for it. Shivali Patel: Do you use any software for automation, such as Adtomic? If yes, what are the basic rules and criteria you suggest for creating any sort of automatic updates? Matthew: So I personally use Pacvue and the automation tools within that are, again, fantastic. There's a bunch of different ways you can go about, I think, automation in general. But I would say, make sure that your goal is very, very clear. It's just kind of blanketed statements for automation in general. Make sure your goals are very, very clear and always have that safeguard of if you're going to increase bids to a certain point, make sure that there's a cap on it. The last thing you want is to have, check your ads console and all of a sudden your bids are $40-$50 because that automation continued to increase based on the threshold you set. So make sure there's some safeguards in place. But for Adtomic I can't speak to Adtomic in particular, but for Pacvue overall there's a whole litany of automations that are used for profitability, for weeks of cover, for impression gaining, for new-to-brand driving. So I think that it's an endless kind of whole of test and learn, potential and all kinds of good stuff. So I would say test, test, test for automations for sure. Shivali Patel: Yeah, and when you're inside of Helium 10, it's the same exact thing when you're setting up those rules. I know we've talked quite a bit about goal setting here today and that definitely is true even inside of Adtomic. When you're doing your rules, it's going to really depend on what niche you're inside of and what your risk tolerance is, how much budget you have, what you're bidding on your keywords, and then you can go in and decide from there. I mean I know that as a standard I've gone in and done 20 clicks, no sales, you're negative matching that keyword. So it really just depends. But Adtomic certainly has ways that you can put in those rules and automation, so you're not spending so much time on trying to audit your entire campaigns. So with that, we've had a really great list of questions here today and I apologize if I didn't get to some of the newer ones, in which case we have a Facebook group. So make sure that you guys go to our Facebook group, you go to Helium 10 members and post up any of those questions that you really have, because we are active in there and we do answer those questions and if not, somebody else definitely can. So make sure you guys are tapped into our communities, and thank you so much, Matt, for being here. We appreciate you coming on and sharing your time and knowledge. Matthew: Yeah, of course. Thanks for having me and hopefully got to the bulk of the questions for everybody. Yeah, it was a treat to be here. I appreciate it. Shivali Patel: Likewise. Likewise, All right with that, we are done. We will see you guys next time, Take care.
5/21/202430 minutes, 24 seconds
Episode Artwork

#562 - From Working 9-5 To Amazon Failure To 6-Figure Seller

Join us as we embark on a captivating journey with Clarence Cheang, one-half of The FBA Bros, who takes us through his inspiring transition from a full-time civil engineer in Singapore to a successful Amazon FBA entrepreneur. Clarence opens up about the rocky start to his online business back in 2019, where he faced a series of setbacks in the highly competitive niche. Despite facing compliance issues and patent infringement roadblocks, Clarence's relentless spirit and innovative product research techniques eventually led him to leave his day job behind. His story is a testament to the power of perseverance in the face of adversity. Listen in as Clarence shares a remarkable case study on the unpredictability of the Amazon marketplace, illustrated by the unexpected success of doormat sales amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. The surge in home decor interest during lockdowns provided a boost for one seller, but also taught a harsh lesson in inventory management as stockouts led to a loss of organic ranking on Amazon. Clarence walks us through the seller's recovery process, employing meticulous data analysis and keyword research, culminating in the serendipitous success of an egg pan product that turned their fortunes around. In this episode, we delve into the nuances of product research and the strategic brand-building essential for standing out on Amazon. Clarence Cheang highlights the crucial role of competition analysis, discussing the tools and techniques necessary to dissect competitors' keyword strategies and assessing product viability. Clarence exemplifies the success of this approach with his 'egg pen' product and underscores the importance of value addition through bundling, which propelled his egg pan to market prominence. We wrap up by exploring the advanced capabilities of Helium 10 tools and the pivotal insights provided by Amazon's Product Opportunity Explorer, emphasizing their role in sustaining a product's top-selling status amidst the ever-evolving marketplace challenges. In episode 562 of the Serious Sellers Podcast, Bradley and Clarence discuss: 00:00 - Amazon FBA Seller Success Story 01:55 - Career Exploration And Amazon FBA Launch 08:33 - Amazon FBA Success Through Product Research 09:15 - Stock Mistake Leads To A Big Loss 11:48 - Amazon FBA Success Through Research 13:55 - Product Research Success and Brand Building 19:17 - Strategic Niche Domination 24:32 - Amazon Success and Helium 10 Tools 28:24 - Competitor Conversion Analysis and Cerebro Queries ► Instagram: instagram.com/serioussellerspodcast ► Free Amazon Seller Chrome Extension: https://h10.me/extension ► Sign Up For Helium 10: https://h10.me/signup  (Use SSP10 To Save 10% For Life) ► Learn How To Sell on Amazon: https://h10.me/ft ► Watch The Podcasts On YouTube: youtube.com/@Helium10/videos Transcript   Bradley Sutton: Today we have Clarence on the show, also known as one half of the FBA bros, and he talks about how he had over two years of Amazon failure but didn't give up and then hit Amazon success and was able to quit his day job thanks to his new product research techniques that he's going to share with us. How cool is that? Pretty cool, I think. Hello, everybody, and welcome to another episode of the Serious Sellers Podcast by Helium 10. I'm your host, Bradley Sutton, and this is the show that's completely BS-free, unscripted and unrehearsed. Organic conversation about serious strategies for serious sellers of any level in the e-commerce world. And speaking of serious strategies, we talk a lot about Helium 10 on this show. So if you are interested in giving it a try, if you've never tried it out, make sure you use our podcast discount code, SSP10. Ssp10. Go to Helium10.com, sign up for your account and save 10% off for life. Somebody who's been using Helium 10 for a very long time and coming to us from the opposite side of the world, where it's like almost midnight over there Go ahead and introduce yourself. It's your first time to the show.   Clarence: Yeah, so thanks for having me on board, Bradley, it is an honor. So my name is Clarence. I've been selling on Amazon for close to five years now, actually. I started in 2019. And at that time, I was just treating it as a regular side hustle, right? So I worked as a full-time engineer for the government and I was working in the civil industry Basically, it's like construction, right, I think that's the most common term for about close to five years. Yeah, so that's really my background, and I dabbled into Amazon FBA in 2019 after about close to five years in the construction industries, and that's where, as you can see, the rest is history.   Bradley Sutton: Okay. So you born and raised in Singapore that's right, that's right, okay. And then went to university there Is being an engineer. Like at what age were you like, hey, this is what I want to do. Or did you just decide once you got to university, or had you been wanting to do that for a while?   Clarence: Yeah, I mean it's an excellent question because, for I think, majority of my life I didn't really know what I wanted to do. So it's more like oh, my grades allow me to enter to this program, so why not just give it a try? So I was pretty much aimless, you know, for the better part of my earlier years. Only after that, when I went into the workforce and I realized, oh dang, I don't want to do this for the rest of my life, man. So that's the epiphany moment. And it took me about five years into the job to realize that I need to start a side hustle. And that's why I started researching. And lo and behold, Amazon FBA came out.   Bradley Sutton: Your first start was what year again? Your first product that you launched.   Clarence: I launched in 2019. 2019.   Bradley Sutton: Okay, so pre-COVID still and you launched in Amazon USA, or did you try Amazon Singapore, or where do you launch first?   Clarence: Directly on Amazon US, just because it's the largest marketplace.   Bradley Sutton: Okay. So at this time, you're still doing your full-time job and you're like hey, let me, let me go ahead and start researching products. Now, the product that you launched way back then. Are you still selling it, or did you get out of it before? What's the situation there?   Clarence: Yeah, I've gotten out of it already. It's just when I launched my first products, I made a lot of mistakes and I realized that that's actually not really the best niche to be in. Right, it's in the lighting. What was it? It's in the lighting niche for lighting OK room. Yeah, so that was a pretty brutal market. It's high competition, you need compliance and literally like one year later I got slapped with this compliance issue that I need to show Amazon that I need to get ungated for this entire category.   Bradley Sutton: So then pretty much your sales went to a complete stop, because you couldn't provide that compliance? How much did you sell of that product before you had to get out though?   Clarence: I sold about close to 1,000 plus units, and that's in a matter of like two to three months. How much did you sell of that product before you had to get out though? I sold about close to 1000 plus units, and that's in a matter of like two to three months, and, lo and behold, I thought I was doing well, and that's where the ungetting email came in.   Bradley Sutton: Okay, so you're still making some profit on it, right I'm? Assuming until you couldn't sell anymore.   Clarence: Okay, yep, and then so did you lose a lot of money, like did you have a lot of inventory that you just had to throw away? Or I didn't really lose a lot, thank god, because it's more of like, uh, I just need to get the ungating done. But that stopped me from selling in the q4 season because the email came in on october and I took one to two months to get the compliance issues are settled up. So I missed the q4 season and when I'm ungated it's January and yeah, it's back to normal.   Bradley Sutton: So you were actually able to get the approval and everything for you. You didn't have to give up on that product. No, I don't have to.   Clarence: Okay.   Bradley Sutton: So now 2020. Was that 2019? Q4 you were talking about?   Clarence: So this is now 2020, the Q4. I mean Q1 when I started selling in January. So I was I mean, I'm happy with that one product and I managed to launch another variation right. And then another tragedy hit, which is at around June, the June of 2020, I got hit by this patent infringement from a competitor, and that is like the last straw for me for this product, because it's just, yeah, it's tough, it's tough, and eventually I found out that, yes, actually I was in the wrong. I didn't do my research properly and somehow I infringed on the design patent that was already approved and somehow I didn't find it out earlier. Yeah, so I spent quite a bit. My lesson here was I spent some of bit, uh. My, my lesson here was uh, I spent some amount of money, uh, to to fight out the case. I actually hired the? Uh, a lawyer to even help me write letters to Amazon and all these things, but it just got nowhere because clearly I'm in the wrong Right. So I think that's my very first knockout punch on Amazon. Okay, yeah.   Bradley Sutton: So at that point did you go to zero, or had you launched other products already?   Clarence: then I had to go to zero for a while I was fighting this case. So I think the recovery moment was when Amazon asked us to recall all the units because it was just sitting there right, not selling. So it's the right thing to do. We call everything back to our 3PL, the third-party logistics warehouse, and I had to make a decision to take out the offending design, which is just a stand it's like a stand for the lamp and that's the only offending design that's been complained about. So I had to took that out, destroy all the offending design and get my supplier to send in more stands to replace it. So I had to pay a lot of money to get this product out and going, and I remember I had about 800 plus units just to get that retrofitted. And once I got it in, I sent it back to Amazon and I just told myself after this, I'm done with this product, I'm going to move on to the next one. Yeah, so I did sell all 800 and thankfully it is still not too great of a loss at least.   Bradley Sutton: You sent the new product in, but then you still gave up on the product because you said you're not selling it anymore today. Right, that one, no more already.   Clarence: So as of 2021, I'm out of that market. Yeah, I'm done with that.   Bradley Sutton: At what point did you start looking for another product, though?   Clarence: That was when I started getting hit with the patent infringement. That was right. That's my epiphany moment and, yeah, I know that I need to have a second product.   Bradley Sutton: How did you do your research, trying to find a new product?   Clarence: Yeah, I mean back then, you know, in 2019 to 2020,. There were a lot of advice, so I was just figuring things out along the way and I think I fell into this trap where I sell product that I think that it could work. Basically, my gut tells me to work. I mean, looking back right now for what I learned today, that is the foolish mistake that I have done right. So, in essence, the second product that I sold it was a home product like a very simple doormat right, something that's for your, for your entryway, and that product, wow, is also tough. It's a lot of competition, the PPC  cost is high and you can't really raise your price as much. So I also learned another valuable lesson there all right, right.   Bradley Sutton: So. So then you, you started selling this other product. Now you know some people. You know already a year, two years, a lot of problems, failures and headaches, and lawyers and stuff. You know. Might give up, uh, at this point. But what kept you going? We're like you, just like no, I have to make this work.   Clarence: Yeah, yeah, I mean, yeah, the things that I go through will probably allow like majority of other sellers to give up on Amazon, but I think it's just. I know that this is a viable business model. I've seen it to work for other people and I just tell myself why not me, right? Why not just give myself another shot? So that was like the tenacity that I had in me to just want to make this work so that I don't have to keep getting stuck in the nine to five red race. I think that was my main driving factor.   Bradley Sutton: Okay, so then you know all the time you're still at your, your job. Now are we almost in in COVID times.   Clarence: Now that's right 2021, that's when COVID hit and the sales boom right. So that was when I the second product, the Dormat product, that one really flew off. I mean that one flew off the shelf really well because of the COVID boom, All right, and I ran out of stock, the doormat sales went up during COVID Doormat of all products doormat.   Bradley Sutton: Why, like nobody's visiting your house anymore to wipe their shoe?   Clarence: I guess I have more time spending time to decorate the house and doing, okay. So that was the time where a lot of people were doing, yeah, a lot of things at home. So one of the ways, all right, whatever, I don't know. Yeah, okay. So now things are looking up. And then what happened? Exactly? And I ran out of stock. So this is my second mistake. I didn't buy enough, right? The demand just spiked out of nowhere. So I ran out of stock for a good two to three months. And that is where I learned another valuable lesson on Amazon. As you know, right, if you run out of stock for a long period of time, the algorithm literally punishes you in terms of the organic rank. And I lost it all in terms of the organic rank and I thought the sales was good. I had this illusion where this product is doing great, right? So I literally ordered, like, like, doubled the number of inventory as the first inventory and, wow, that was a huge mistake, because I lost all my organic rank during the season where I sold very well. And when I restock, when I'm back in stock, I realized that, hey, my sales is I don't know are no longer like 50 or 60 units a day. They were like trickling, trickled down to like five units or even like three units a day, and that was very worrying because I had doubled the number of inventory I needed to clear right. So that was another great learning lesson for me, which is, hey, manage your inventory well. I think that's really-.   Bradley Sutton: How many months were?   Clarence: you out of stock. Three months, that was a long-. Okay, yeah, and I'm sure everyone recall that was the period where there's a lot of shipping delays because of COVID and etc.   Bradley Sutton: Yeah, so that affected me quite a lot, and that was your only product at the time, that doormat, exactly. Yep, all right, so now, another kind of problem. Now you invested so much money in all this inventory. It's just sitting there. So now, what's your next step?   Clarence: So after that, we have like 2000 units of doormats right Stuck in Amazon and I just, yeah, I'm unable to sell it. So what I did was I tried to reduce the price. I did all I can, you know like, increase my PPC budget, reduce the price to even like, like it just doesn't make sense to sell it anymore. So even then I couldn't really sell it as fast as possible, so I had to liquidate that batch of uh doormats right. So that is my second product and it failed spectacularly.   Bradley Sutton: yeah, all right. So then you went back to zero then at one point because you didn't have another product going at the same time. So again back to zero. Are we already now in?   Clarence: this is like round 22 or two zero.   Bradley Sutton: Two to amazon, zero to me all right, yeah, now you're two, or was it? Was this about q1 2021 or q1 2022?   Clarence: we're talking about. This is about q still 2022, roughly q3 yeah rightly okay.   Bradley Sutton: So about q3? Now you're just like I can't sell these things. So, but again, still, you didn't uh give up. So what was your next step?   Clarence: Yeah. So, after learning the actual ropes and I realized a lot of mistakes that I've made, which is, I need to go deep into the data before I choose a product, make sure that the competition is not too great, so that I can win them in PPC in the keywords. So I really learned a lot, Bradley, in that year. It was probably one of the lowest season of my life in my Amazon FBA journey and this is like my final chance, right? If this doesn't work, that's it. Man, I'm stuck in my nine to five right, so I have to make this work. So, and thankfully, when I launched my third product and this time around, it finally took off. So this one is actually one of the more public case study, which is the egg pen right, which I showed that off in a lot of my social medias and even on YouTube channel. So with that launch itself, it set the trajectory that, hey, this is a system that we actually, after we take the inputs from many sellers, we combine it together and we didn't just take it wholesale right, we also tweak it in a way that we want to test some, some items so that we can rely on this proven system to keep launching products on Amazon. So now yeah, by the way, that's 2021, right, that's when we started launching our Egg pan and it became a great success, all because we note down on product research and keyword research. I think these two items really make the breakthrough for us.   Bradley Sutton: The FBA. So how did you find that specific opportunity Like, how did that come Like? First of all, let me tell you, I probably never would have found it because I hate eggs. It's funny because now I sell egg trays in the Project X but, like, I hate anything that does with eggs. But how did you find that product opportunity?   Clarence: Yeah, that's a great question really, because the egg pan product came to me when I was just I'm just walking around in Singapore. There's a lot of malls, right, there's nothing much you can do other than go to malls after malls and in one of the shops I encountered this Japanese kitchen store. Right, it's just a store that specializes in Japanese kitchen items and, lo miho, I just took a photo of the category out there Basically it's an owl and I went back home and did my research on all of those products and, lo and behold, I found the Japanese egg pen to actually pass our funnel, which is our product research funnel that we have developed.   Bradley Sutton: All right, talk a little bit about that. What are those? I know you have something completely fancy. I've even seen the videos. Somehow you have some bots that connect to Discord and connect to Helium 10 and a lot of crazy stuff. But like in a nutshell, like what are the things that you are looking for? That means, hey, there could be some opportunity here.   Clarence: Yeah, I mean, I think one of the big deciding factor in choosing a good product is the competition level, which I think a lot of sellers may have missed out in the earlier stages of their product selection. So how we deep dive it is by the use of Helium 10, Cerebra too. We compare or we picked out the top 10 competitor in any of the niche because basically they're doing well, right and we want to learn from them. So by analyzing their keywords and how many of the keywords do they rank on page one and we can have the. It's a very beautiful Excel sheet that we have developed in a way that it allows us to show us how strong each of the top 10 competitors are in terms of keyword strength, right? In fact, I went through that in great detail in one of my YouTube channels I mean YouTube videos, right. So when we did that, we realized it's an epiphany moment, right? Because we realized, oh dang, now we have this tool to analyze competition level for any market on amazon.com. And that is so powerful because it allows us to, even before we invest money into the product, we can roughly tell how easy it is to defeat the top 10 competitors and if it is easy to defeat them roughly, we can win the market. So that is really the initial epiphany moment in our product research journey. And the egg pen right, bringing back to the egg pen, that is one of the products that actually showed us that there's actually like eight in the top 10 competitors. There are eight really weak competitors, as in they don't rank very well on Amazon, and two of them it's just okay, they're good. They're just ranking about 40 to 50% of the overall keyword for this market. So I think that's a no-brainer decision for us to enter.   Bradley Sutton: Okay, so you're looking, hey, at their strength. It's not just, oh, I mean, which also is a case like, oh, these people don't even have A-plus content, they don't even have a full image, their listing sucks, but you're also looking at the keyword level. Um, you know, how strong are they in like their, their, their, uh, their SEO and things like that, right, all right, so I'm actually, um, while you were talking, I went and I found your product on Amazon and, and, yeah, you're like still the number one seller on this, so that's pretty impressive. But let's just take a look at your listing here Now. Did you start off with all of these like little accessories at the beginning, or did you like develop this over time? How did you know, like, not just to come up with just the pan, but to have all of these little things as well?   Clarence: Yeah, I love that you bring up the screen here, right? So, like I have all the different bundles to the egg pan, so one of the amazing tool is basically to answer your question. I have all of those bundles right from day one, right? That's how I really win the competition in terms of adding a lot of real value to the market. Yeah, so I found this through Helium 10 Blackboard's product targeting, using a comparison of the top ASIN and see Amazon's frequently bought together items. So this is one of the way to think of some bundles for me to get into.   Bradley Sutton: So like people were buying the other competitor's pan but with like the serving plate or spatula and stuff like that Exactly.   Clarence: And, to be honest, those smaller items are not really expensive. They are less than like 20 cents USD each. So I can just bundle it together, add a lot of value and at the same time, still sell for a decent profit in this market.   Bradley Sutton: Yeah, Okay, cool. So you found this opportunity. Now, what kind of sale. You know, I see that you're selling. You know, looks like you know five, six hundred units a month. Now, back when you first started, what were the main competitors doing as far as sales? Like, were the top ones selling also this many, or was it less? Was it more? What's going on?   Clarence: So the main competitor right now is going to be it's this neon color, pink color competitor, right? I'm not sure if you can search that up also on Amazon they're probably still there. So initially when we did our research, that guy is the top selling competitor, so he was doing close to about 600 to 700 units a month, right. But if you look at, I think today because the seasonality do change along the way and I think he's doing close to 200, 300 units a month right now, I think yeah, I mean, we basically snatched a bit of its market share.   Bradley Sutton: Yeah.   Clarence: So that's true from the first week, right the moment we launched, when we have zero reviews, just because we understand keywords and we differentiated a little bit. In terms of bundling, yeah, we managed to get like the top the best selling in terms of sales velocity in a matter of one week for this market.   Bradley Sutton: Wow, wow. All right, what was your launch strategy in those days? Was there still like search, find, buy and stuff back in those days, or was that already past the time where you're not allowed to do that anymore?   Clarence: I can't do SFB. It's gone already. Those methods are.   Bradley Sutton: So then, what was your launch? Just PPCs is what got you there, to page one for those things. That's right, PPC. PPC only launched?   Clarence: Yeah.   Bradley Sutton: All right. Now what's kept you at the top? You know, like anybody can find a new niche, right, or not new niche, but a niche where there's weak players, right. But then usually somebody comes in and does the right thing, even if they have the right bundle and they got the right keywords. Now the other competitors like, oh man, we better step up our game. And now we're, we're, we're doing it, but but you've still kind of staying almost near number one. Um, here you know, two years later. So what, what has helped you?   Clarence: to do that, do you think? Yeah, yeah, great question. In fact, the observation that we had was the moment we launched into this market. I mean, the competitors got spooked right and they will definitely improve their product bundling or even in terms of offering. So we did see new entrants number one, that came into the market. Number two, we did see our current competitors improve, basically, their offering. So, to combat this, I think the number one thing is understanding the keyword basket for this market. So, like example, we did our research and we found out there's actually 241 relevant keywords for this specific market and we definitely want to get page one on all those 241 keywords. And I think that's where our advantage comes in in terms of a keyword basket for ranking, because a competitor will come in later on. They, he or he or she may not understand that there's 241 keywords to rank for this market, but we do and we already know it at our product research stage. Yeah, so we keep doing that again and again and use PPC to rank for them and it has been doing us, yeah, a lot of success so far. Just okay excellent.   Bradley Sutton: Now, at this point you know, like you, you got a lot of success. Did you start other accounts and start selling other uh products? Or what was your, your, your next step? Because you know you could have one successful product, uh, but this one successful product maybe is not enough to like, make somebody like, yeah, okay, now I can quit my engineering job, you know yeah, yeah, it's not.   Clarence: it's definitely not enough. You definitely need a lot more products. So with this first launch, in a way, it's like a proof of concept to our research formula and we are repeating it again and again. So to date, I think we have close to at least I think we have 10 different products right now across multiple stores. So our brand building strategy is very simple we want to launch one store in one niche and grow that product line right. So basically, let's say, the egg pan niche, right, or the Japanese kitchen niche, so you will launch other products that's in a similar niche for the brand Yamomnom. So, similarly, we are also launching other brands. Like, we just recently went into this camping and outdoor brand and is selling a lot of these kitchen utensils for outdoor camping. So we have been seeing a lot of success in that area as well. So, yeah, that's our brand building strategy there.   Bradley Sutton: Okay. So did you already quit your job or you're still doing your job? I've already quit long ago. Already Quit long ago. So now you get to just enjoy being an entrepreneur and not having to work the nine to five. So now, uh, now you get to just enjoy being a entrepreneur and not having to work with the nine to five. So your original purpose of getting into Amazon finally got fulfilled. Now talk a little bit more about your, your strategies. You know, like. One thing is about, you know the, the, the keywords, but is that the only thing you're looking at for the validation steps, or are there other steps of your, your validation? Or is just, hey, looking at the keyword strength? That's, that's enough for you.   Clarence: Yeah, um, it's definitely keyword strength is just one of our many criteria to look for in a product to launch. Uh, we have like up to 14 different criteria that we look at. Uh, one of them uh, maybe the easier one is like a return ratio. We don't want to enter into market with, uh, let's say, higher than 5% return ratio, right? So the egg pan shows us it's only about 2.86% return ratio, so that was perfect for us. So that's one of our criteria. The other criteria is like the seasonality and the kind of the trending kind of a season for the product. So that's something that we want to avoid as well. The other one is like the differentiation opportunity. Are we able to find improvements to the product? Can we add value in terms of bundle? How about the premium packaging side of things? Yeah, so we do have a lot of criteria in our research funnel right now that we have tested for many years and we have seen a lot of great success coming out of this funnel.   Bradley Sutton: Actually, yeah, now this funnel, actually, yeah, now, some of your you know, you also do a lot of out there and you have a big, you know a lot of students, um, you don't, you don't have to mention their name or their product or anything, but can you, can you describe like one of the success stories, like somebody who came and they had no idea what was Amazon. They found this product and now they're selling this amount or something like that.   Clarence: Yeah, yeah, I'm truly very proud of this student. He's based in the UK and he just recently crossed the seven-figure mark on Amazon using the exact formulas that we have teach him. And, yeah, we have so many success stories just by repeating and reusing this formula that we have developed. And, yeah, at the moment, our students like one of them based in Singapore as well. He's just, like, I think, 19 years old. He launched his first product on Amazon ever following this product research funnel that we've created, and he instantly made like 30K sales revenue in the first month of launch. So we're very proud of a lot of these success stories and we're always fine tuning this research funnel. We're not perfect. We're not saying that we have made it there. It's just I think we've got something going on and we are always open to test the system out to make sure that we refine the criterias so that we can increase our probability of success when we launch products on Amazon.   Bradley Sutton: You don't get a little jealous sometimes of your students where they get success right away and you had to have three years of failure in Amazon?   Clarence: I mean all power to them. And yeah, I always tell my students right, don't do the same way as me. Invest in someone who has been there, done that, and you catch up the learning curve and they really have All right yeah.   Bradley Sutton: So let's talk about you. Know how you got connected with Amazon, like, like, how did you get on Amazon's radar? Because you know I'm wearing my like, uh, my project X hat right now. We actually did a filming with Amazon Singapore, but actually in Vietnam where we were filming a new show called project X mini, not out yet, probably be out in a couple of months, based on when you're listening to this. But how? How did you get like on Amazon's radar where, now that you know, they invite you sometimes to their headquarters there in Singapore and doing trainings and stuff like that?   Clarence: Yeah, yeah, I mean it's interesting that you brought it up because, to be honest, we we do not know until today, right, I mean David is my business partner as well. I'm just one half of the FBA bros, right, and I mean David runs the social media and the business development side of things for us. Yeah, that's out of blue. One day amazon just reached out to us, I guess I believe that's from social media. And, yeah, and I think one of the one of the employees I believe her name was Yuri, right, so shout out to you, Yuri, for organizing all of this together. And she saw one of my TikTok videos. I was in Egypt and I was just filming some FBA content near the pyramids, and I went to the dead sea as well and just filmed some FBA contents, right, and I think she took some inspiration from that and proposed the entire project and it turned to be Project X Are you talking about Yuri from Amazon Singapore.   Bradley Sutton: She's Korean. Yes, that's her. I was just with her in Korea. As a matter of fact, we're doing another film and I was. I was just talking to her, like literally two hours ago on Kakao, talk about hey, when is our project? I didn't realize you. You, she was your first connection, also with Amazon way back.   Clarence: Yeah, so you raise the. It's the main guy right, the main person that's in charge of this entire thing. So yeah, kudos to her Okay.   Bradley Sutton: All right, cool favorite tool in Helium 10 is probably Cerebro. So so tell me, why is Cerebro your favorite tool in Helium 10 and what's your like your second favorite tool then, next to Cerebro?   Clarence: Yeah. So I love Cerebro because I mean, frankly, it has made us a lot of money. I think the investment that we made in Helium 10, which is a no brainer right. I mean, we're just paying, I don't know, sub $200 plus a month, but we're getting close to 10 to 20,000 plus in profit every single month. So, yeah, I think it makes sense. So why I love Cerebro? Because it works right. It helps us to identify all the keywords, like what I mentioned earlier 241 keywords. Even before we invested into the eggpan market, we found it through Cerebro, right. So we have a certain way that we adjust the filters to bring out all those keywords. Yeah. So second tool I love I have to give Amazon their own shout out as well. Amazon's product opportunity explorer. I think that one was. Yeah, it's really a good tool because it's directly from Amazon. The data is, I think, as close as you can get to accurate and, yeah, they display a lot of valuable data.   Bradley Sutton: So, I love what are some of your, your, your, the things that you like in Product Opportunity Explorer to look at Awesome.   Clarence: Yeah. So I love two main metrics that I see over there. Number one is it will tell you when you search for any of the keywords and Amazon will niche it down for you. It will tell you how many competitors are there or are you going to be competing with. Right. For example, there's this number that said the top 90% of the clicks and there's a number right, so that number itself is going to be a foreshadow of how many guys are you going to be fighting with in terms of your PPC campaign, because these guys are getting 90% of the clicks right and you're probably going to be fighting out with them. So if that number is as low as 25 or lesser, that means you don't have a lot of competition to fight and thereby your Amazon PPC bids will be a lot more favorable. Right, below $1 per click, right. So that's my number one favorite matrix to look at. Number two is when you go to trends under Product Version Explorer, you will see the average search conversion right, and this is something that is a very valuable data, because this shows you, out of the basket of competitors, how well are they converting for that market right. You can even go down to keywords and it will show you the individual keyword search conversion rate itself and when you compare it to your own business reports, especially your unit session percentage, it's like a yardstick for you to measure how well are you performing compared to your competitors. So I always go back to that matrix to see hey, do I need to improve in my conversion rate?   Bradley Sutton: so let me see and compare to my competitors okay, now going back to Cerebro, do you have like a diamond account with helium 10 or higher? I, I think I got a diamond account. I'm so sure have you ever used? Then the new I mean actually just recently got to diamond but the, the Historical Cerebro, where you can like kind of like look back over time where somebody was ranking any time in the last two years. Oh, yes, yes, I've seen, I've seen that, yeah, and I think I tested. So then you know, like, like, what are your thoughts now on seasonal products? Like, do you stay away from seasonal? Or now that you know, like now that there's the historical Cerebro, you can kind of really understand what were they making sales for in their season, or do you like only products that are like evergreen throughout the year?   Clarence: I think it depends on the level of selling journey that you're in. Like for me, after I've launched a few products already, I'm a little more confident now. So I think I'm willing to go into the seasonal product niche, like the camping niche. That sells out very well in summer and in December, but for the rest of the year it was a little slower right. So I think we're fine with that. But if you're new and you're just starting on Amazon, I will not recommend you to go into seasonal products, just because there's a little more nuances in inventory management. So I love that tool that you mentioned. It allows you to instantly see literally how many units you need to buy. You know in advance in terms of your inventory management based on your competitors, and that is yeah, it's a very helpful tool.   Bradley Sutton: Okay Now the other question I asked my guest who used Helium 10 is if I give you the keys to the kingdom, like hey you, you get to direct the product team to make some new tool or some new feature that we don't currently have, what's the first thing you're going to tell them to do, like what's on your Wishlist of something that Helium 10 doesn't do for you right now that you'd like?   Clarence: Yeah, I love that because, um, I mean, the one thing that I would love is I I wish there's a way that we can automate product research. Right, like I mean, ai is all the rage we can go through the funnel, like the funnel that we have, and if there's a software right, I'm praying Helium 10 will be it If there's a software that we can just put the top 10 ASINs in there and it will tell us okay, this is your top 10 competitors. They are ranking for this amount of keywords. They are not very strong in a keyword rank, so maybe that's an opportunity there for keyword competition. Maybe another one will be return ratio. Pull the data from Amazon and say, oh, this is the average return ratio, it passes this criteria. Let's move on to the next check and then go all through the 14 checks and at the end it spits out the answer for you it's a pass.   Bradley Sutton: All right, Well, hey we actually we started something like that. It's called Product Launchpad, not fully exactly like you said. I'm going to connect you with our product team and maybe you can help guide that tool. But yeah, we do have an AI powered product research tool that is like 50% what you said, so so maybe you can bring it now to 100% with your direction there. So I'm going to connect you to a Vincent for that. But anyways, what about last 30 or 60 second tip of the day? Our 60 second tip? What is a? An Amazon strategy you can share with the community that you think is beneficial for them?   Clarence: Yeah, TST right, 30 Second Tips. So I think number one is I think we as Amazon sellers, after we sell for quite a while, we tend to be very detached to the customers because it's all the numbers, right. We download Excel sheets, we look at Helium 10 data, we look at Amazon's data. So I think the number one thing is always go back to the human being, because you're actually selling to the actual human being on the other side of the computer screen. So understand them, right. Like, really, you're selling your products to, let's say, a mom or a father who's buying a gift, right? So if that's your customer profile, then make sure your listing resonates with that as a customer profile. So I think the biggest tip that I can leave you guys is understand your customers, create your customer profile and make sure that your listing speaks to them directly, because the first trick is always click-through rate. Yeah, I mean, click-through rate is a little easy to get, just get your main product, I mean your main images and your pricing right. But the moment they are on your listing right and a lot of customers do bounce away sometimes from. So you need to find out why are they bouncing away from your listing? And this is one of the way customer profile and create images that speaks to them directly. All right?   Bradley Sutton: Well, people want to reach out to you, get more information. Find you on the interwebs. How can they find you out there?   Clarence: Yeah, so that's. You can search us on either Google YouTube the Google YouTube or Instagram the FBA Bros. So I'm Clarence, so the FBA Bros, as in T-H-E, f-b-a-b-r-o-s. So that's our handle on Instagram, tiktok and YouTube. So feel free to follow us for a lot of the advanced level tips that we share. And we don't hide things, right. I mean, we show our products. We even launched the egg pan in a mini PPC series on our YouTube channel. So we even go through the steps on what we click to launch the product. So I think there's a lot of value that you can learn from there as well. Looking forward to add value to that.   Bradley Sutton: Awesome. Well, clarence, thank you so much for joining us, and I hope to be invited again to speak at the Amazon Singapore conference that they usually do in fall, and so maybe we can connect again at that time. But don't try and serve me any eggs in your egg pan because I can't eat eggs. All right.   Clarence: I will see you later, man. Yeah, thanks for having me on board, Bradley.  
5/18/202434 minutes, 14 seconds
Episode Artwork

Helium 10 Buzz 5/17/24: New Amazon High Return Rate Fee | TikTok Shop Expand

Amazon's new fee policy is shaking up the game for sellers with high return rates. But that's not all - we're also unwrapping TikTok Shop's leap into markets like Mexico and Europe. This and more buzzing news on this episode! We’re back with another episode of the Weekly Buzz with Helium 10’s Chief Brand Evangelist, Bradley Sutton. Every week, we cover the latest breaking news in the Amazon, Walmart, and E-commerce space, talk about Helium 10’s newest tools and features, and provide a training tip for the week for serious sellers of any level. Amazon has announced some changes to the returns processing fee, which is expected to impact sellers on the platform who experience high return rates. https://www.helium10.com/blog/return-rate-processing-fee-update/ TikTok to expand e-commerce business into Mexico and major Western European markets amid scrutiny in the US, EU https://www.scmp.com/tech/tech-trends/article/3262039/tiktok-expand-e-commerce-business-mexico-and-major-western-european-markets-amid-scrutiny-us-eu Amazon VP Alan Moss Tells Advertisers At Tech Giant’s First Upfront That Putting Ads On Prime Video “Connected The Dots Across Our Universe” – Update https://deadline.com/2024/05/amazon-upfront-mike-hopkins-paul-kotas-streaming-advertising-1235915381/ Join us for an exciting in-person event held in the heart of the thriving city of Madrid. Home to the Kings of European Football Real Madrid, the Spanish Royal family, and some of the largest cultural events and landmarks in Europe, and now the AVASK Plus / Helium 10 Elite Madrid Seller Workshop! We have a day packed full of amazing speakers and topics that we’re sure you’ll love. Join some of the largest sellers in the e-commerce space as we deliver no-nonsense guidance for e-commerce sellers serious about making it big. Did you know that in Helium 10, you have a heat map of where in the USA your inventory is being held so that you can see the distribution of it, as well as a heat map of where your sales have been at the city or state level, over any date range?  In this episode, we show you how you can find these maps and how you can use them! Plus, Helium 10 is changing the product research game by bringing back the Pinterest Trend Finder and adding the new tool Amazon Trending Keywords tool, revealing hot items with a simple click. Get set to spin the wheel of fortune and discover what's sizzling in the market on this episode of the Weekly Buzz. In this episode of the Weekly Buzz by Helium 10, Bradley covers: 00:46 - Amazon High Return Rate Fee 04:57 - TikTok Shop Expansion 06:55 - Amazon Sponsored TV 09:31 - Event in Madrid 10:31 - Pro Training: Inventory Heat Maps 12:53 - Helium 10 New Feature Alerts
5/17/202415 minutes, 51 seconds
Episode Artwork

#561 - Strategies from an 8-Figure Amazon/Walmart Brand: VitaCup

From eBay to the e-commerce big leagues, Jason McLellan of VitaCup joins me to unpack the strategy behind his success in Walmart's evolving online marketplace. We kick off with an exploration of Walmart's responsive improvements to seller feedback and their platform, which has leveled up from just another retail site to a critical component in the omnichannel market. Jason's transition from an individual seller to a mover and shaker with VitaCup showcases the agility needed to thrive in today's digital retail space, and he doesn't hold back on sharing the victories and challenges of managing inventory and leveraging Walmart's coupons and subscription beta programs to forge lasting customer relationships. Then, we wade into the realm of subscriptions and coupons, tools that have become indispensable in the arsenal of online marketplaces. We dissect how VitaCup uses initial discounts to reel in customers and the art of maintaining them through smart cohort analysis. It's all about the numbers as we dive deep into data-driven decision-making, assessing how to track subscriber trends and harness coupons to boost conversions and brand credibility. And for those looking to sharpen their product listings, we provide a masterclass on balancing keyword richness with Walmart's preference for conciseness, ensuring your products shine brightly amidst the digital shelves.   To wrap up, we tackle the nitty-gritty of optimizing product listings for peak sales performance on Walmart, balancing the act of keyword incorporation without tipping into overstuffing. We peer into the crystal ball of Walmart's future advertising enhancements like negative targeting and muse over the challenges of price parity and infringement headaches. If you're navigating the Walmart maze, the Helium 10 Winning with Walmart Facebook group is your compass – a community where sellers come together to trade secrets and solutions. So, stay tuned for the next round of insider tips next month on Walmart Wednesday, where we'll continue to chart the course toward success in the Walmart marketplace. In episode 561 of the Serious Sellers Podcast, Carrie and Jason discuss: 00:00 - Strategies for Success on Walmart.com 05:57 - Optimizing Listing Quality for Success 10:43 - Difference Between Amazon and Walmart 13:57 - Optimizing Subscription and Coupon Strategies 0:19:32 - Optimizing Walmart Product Listings for Sales 0:29:44 - Helping Sellers Navigate Walmart Issues
5/14/202430 minutes, 29 seconds
Episode Artwork

#560 - Amazon, Walmart, TikTok, & Target Strategies From A 9 Figure Seller

Listen in as Grace Kopplin, a seasoned e-commerce expert with a marketing background and former Helium 10 blog writer, shares her journey from a Midwest upbringing to managing an Amazon team for a nine-figure e-commerce business. Grace's initial forays into retail buying and planning led to her pivotal shift to the e-commerce arena. As she recounts her experience honing analytical skills as a business analyst, we get an inside look at the strategies driving profitability and sales growth on the ever-evolving Amazon platform. During our conversation, we tackled the significant changes that Amazon sellers are facing, especially with the latest coupon and sales strategies in Q1 2024. Grace reveals how the new minimum discount requirements for coupons have transformed selling approaches, impacting product badging and organic ranking. We also talk about the intricacies of Amazon PPC advertising, including the exciting new video campaign options and store spotlight formats. Additionally, Grace provides insight into how resellers can navigate sponsored brand ads amidst fierce buy box competition and the potential for platforms like TikTok Shop to skyrocket brand awareness. To wrap up this episode, Grace and Bradley explore the implementation of AI in Amazon-selling strategies, noting the platform's dominance and the emerging significance of marketplaces like TikTok. We delve into how new Amazon data points and tools, like the Product Opportunity Explorer and Helium 10's Cerebro, are essential for content strategy and maintaining a competitive edge. Plus, don't miss our discussion on the unique challenges of managing large assortments in categories like apparel, footwear, and jewelry. Whether you're a seasoned seller or new to the e-commerce game, this episode is packed with actionable strategies and expert insights you won't want to miss. In episode 560 of the Serious Sellers Podcast, Bradley and Grace discuss: 00:00 - E-Commerce Strategies for Serious Sellers 01:21 - Grace's Backstory 06:11 - Managing Brand Registry and Fees Strategy 13:24 - Amazon Advertising and Selling Strategies 14:45 - New Amazon PPC Strategies and Challenges 20:02 - Amazon Launch Strategy Evolution 23:01 - Amazon Strategy and AI Implementation 25:12 - Leveraging Amazon Data for Strategic Advantage 32:22 - PowerPlay Hockey Jerseys and Conferences ► Instagram: instagram.com/serioussellerspodcast ► Free Amazon Seller Chrome Extension: https://h10.me/extension ► Sign Up For Helium 10: https://h10.me/signup  (Use SSP10 To Save 10% For Life) ► Learn How To Sell on Amazon: https://h10.me/ft ► Watch The Podcasts On YouTube: youtube.com/@Helium10/videos Transcript Bradley Sutton: Today, we've got a seller who used to write blogs for Helium 10 but now works at a company that's a nine-figure seller online with Amazon, obviously, being their number one moneymaker. But you might be shocked when you find out which marketplaces brings in the second most amount of sales. Find out what that is plus get her Amazon strategies in today's episode. How cool is that? Pretty cool, I think. Bradley Sutton: Hello everybody, and welcome to another episode of the Serious Sellers Podcast by Helium 10. I'm your host, Bradley Sutton, and this is the show that's completely BS free, unscripted and unrehearsed organic conversation about serious strategies for serious sellers of any level in the e-commerce world. And just wanted to throw a quick shout out here, we have a new TikTok channel at Helium 10. It's helium10_software. So if you want some unserious strategies you know sometimes we got some serious strategies on there too. Make sure to give us a follow. All right, go. You can even see me singing in Chinese on one of these videos here but go to h10.me/tiktok or just type in Helium 10, one zero underscore software and follow us on TikTok. We're going to have somebody who I don't think I'm not going to ask her to do a TikTok dance for us here. But Grace, first time, I believe first time on the podcast, right, for you. Grace: Yes, yes, first time. Bradley Sutton: Awesome, well, welcome. Like you, actually, you know, we met years ago at different conferences and stuff but also for a while when I was running the content team, you were one of our actually contract workers where you would, you know, write some Amazon related blogs. But it could be that I know some of your backstory, but since I'm like 10-second Tom from 50 First Dates, I just forget everything. So, regardless if I remember or not, let's go into your backstory because nobody else on the show might know who you are. You just told me that you're in Minnesota, but it sounds like you're not from there. Where are you from? Grace: Yes, I was born and raised in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, so I'm still a Midwest gal, but I made my way to Minneapolis about six years ago now. Bradley Sutton: Well, how can you be a Twins fan? Shouldn't you still be a Brewers fan then? Grace: Fair Weather fan, I suppose. Bradley Sutton: Okay, all right. So Milwaukee, the Frozen Tundra of Milwaukee, and then going into college. Where did you go to college at? Grace: Yes, I went to University of Wisconsin in Madison, so very big party school had a great time. Bradley Sutton: What is the mascot? Why can't it? It's not the Grace: The Badgers. Bradley Sutton: See? I was going to say I knew it started with a B. I was like no Beavers is Oregon State. What B is it the Badgers? Yes, all right. Grace: Bucky Badger. Bradley Sutton: Well, what did you? What did you major in over there? Grace: Yeah, I got my BBA in marketing. I've always been just like super business oriented and I wanted to do something that was pretty broad, so I did what anyone would do and got a degree in business, and I've done a lot of different things since then. Bradley Sutton: Okay, and what like. Well, as soon as you got out of university, you know, got your degree. What was your first gainful employment that you did? Grace: I feel like in business school they always teach you. It's like you can either go into finance and be a consultant or if you want to work in retail and you like business, let's go be a buyer. Those are like the two things they tell you that are options. I was like I need to be a buyer so I started my career in retail in a buying office doing buying and planning. So that gave me a pretty good basis of just how retail works. So I focused a lot on brick and mortar retail, buying products for stores, allocating the inventory and doing the forecasting for that. Bradley Sutton: And what was your first exposure to e-commerce? Grace: Yeah, it was actually my first job out of college. We actually slated all of our ads by writing it down in a journal and submitting it through marketing, and our e-com business was super small back then. It wasn't that long ago but that was my first exposure to e-comm and it was always really interesting to me. And as the retail atmosphere changed in the early 2010s, I knew that's where I wanted to be for longevity, for my career. Bradley Sutton: Now, was it at the same company that you're working at today? Grace: No, I've bounced around a lot and my career has led me in a lot of different ways. Unfortunately, a lot of the large big box retailers I worked for all had their demise for any reason or another. So I kind of bounced around until I found an e-commerce centric company, which is where I'm at right now. Bradley Sutton: What did you start doing at this company and then? What have you been doing over the years and not now? What is your main role? Grace: Yeah, so I started as an e-commerce business analyst, which is pretty much jack of all trades when it comes to anything analytical. So I was kind of the person who would be pulling all of the reporting from Amazon, creating forecasts, pitching to our executive team. This is why we need to buy this inventory for Amazon. This is how it all works. So I was really in the weeds and I feel like that gave me such good experience in what I'm doing now, which is kind of managing the full Amazon team really a strong focus on profitability, but also sales growth, which has been such a hot topic recently. So I've done a lot of different things. Bradley Sutton: Is this like a company that has its own brand and manufacturers own products? Grace: So the company is called Powerplay Retail. We started as a manufacturer's rep group, so working with brands, helping them get into retailers. It was really focused on brick and mortar retailers. Obviously, we have Target and Best Buy here in Minneapolis, so companies like us exist to help brands who don't know how to get into retail do just that. And then we kind of morphed into a distributor, as brands needed help actually shipping into retailers. And then when brands were like, hey, can you help us sell online, we were like yes, 100%. So then that's why our e-commerce arm exists. Grace: So we're a third-party reseller that partners with brands that don't want to bring Amazon in-house. So we buy and sell inventory out of our own large 3P account. We're also an Amazon agency, so I manage brands in their own 3P accounts. So I manage brands in their own 3P accounts. So I kind of do it both ways and it kind of just depends on what brands need. And over the years we've also dabbled in private label. We've created our own products and sold those in our accounts as well. So it's been a really cool experience being able to try it just every different way of selling on Amazon. Bradley Sutton: How many seller accounts do you guys have? Grace: Yeah, right now from an owned perspective we have three or four, but just from our full partnership perspective, I'm probably in maybe 20 different accounts on a daily basis. Bradley Sutton: So how does it work for when you're managing somebody else's stuff, like for brand registry? Like do some of these brands already have their own brand registry and then you somehow just get authorized or are you the one who is actually registering their brand because they never were before? How does that work? Grace: Both. So some companies are more Amazon savvy and right from the beginning and get go they registered with brand registry, which is great, and in that case we just become an authorized reseller and an administrator under their brand registry so we can act on their behalf. And in some cases they don't know, so either I'm kind of coaching them through that setup process or actually registering it on their behalf and managing everything. So it kind of just depends on how hands-on they want to be or how hands-off I want to be. So whatever works best for the brand, always the brand in mind for us. Bradley Sutton: Let's just skip ahead. We're going to talk a lot of strategy, but I think the thing top of mind for so many Amazon sellers and I think you have a unique perspective because you're dealing with so many different accounts I'm assuming you've got customers in many different categories, many different size of products, different, you know, types of products. The fees, you know, there's low inventory fees, that's coming. You know, there's low inventory fees. That's coming, you know, depending on when people are listening to this episode, maybe it's already there. There's the inventory placement fees, so that's been out for a little bit longer. How has this affected the brands that you're working with and what are the different strategies that? Like how you guys have pivoted? Like, are you doing your shipments any different or are you just like taking in the chin and it's costing us 20% more? Like, talk a little bit about some different experiences with different brands. Grace: Yeah. So these fees have been a huge topic of conversation for us in my operations team on how we can best handle these. Obviously they're real and we have to figure out a way to respond to them and maintain profitability above all else. So in terms of the shipment processes, we've been kind of going back and forth between the Amazon optimized shipments and just kind of eating the cost, depending on what our profitability looks like. So when these fees were introduced, our first step was like recreating our Amazon profitability model. I know there's a good Helium 10 one out there. Amazon kind of has its own Revenue Calculator tool. Grace: But what we did internally is create a very, very extensive profit and loss model outlining all of those different new fees and how they could impact us, so estimating at like a per pound dollar amount what this inventory placement fee would be an impact for us by SKU. So we can just first see how much can we afford to spend on advertising now that we have to spend more on logistics and operations costs, because that's kind of our flexible cost. And then, two, how is that going to impact our sales if we're investing less on some of the advertising side of things and then when it comes to the low inventory fee side, I was actually surprised that the fee even rolled out when it did. I know there's some concessions that Amazon is making right now and I think they're going to probably continue to make more concessions as some of the loopholes are found. But the fact that it's getting charged at the parent level is a huge problem, especially for a lot of brand partners that we have in the clothing and apparel and footwear side of things. Bradley Sutton: Wait, hold on, hold on. I've just been so busy with stuff I haven't even been checking that. So at the parent level means like you could have 10 variations and nine of them are cool, but then what? Don't tell me. You're saying that if one of them is low inventory, everything gets charged. Grace: No, it's not one of them, it's the sum of all of the children up to the parent. So no, it's not one of them, it's the sum of all of the children up to the parent. So they take like the average part of the supply chain, like it's not under my control if there's an issue with the supply of the raw materials needed to create my product and I can't ship it into FBA. So we're definitely looking at those, estimating them and seeing how we can respond, and there's definitely been some strongly worded emails to my Amazon Account Manager about just how these are impacting us and how critical it is to our business, as profitability right now is, it's hard for all third party resellers. Bradley Sutton: So your team is not the one controlling the inbound? I mean, obviously you're not controlling the manufacturing. But what about from, like you know, some of these brands have 3PL, are you the one who created the transfer shipments? Grace: Yes. Bradley Sutton: Okay. So how are you doing those differently, if at all? Grace: Yeah. So we have decided because Amazon is encouraging us to send in more units at once to decrease our frequency of shipments into Amazon. So in efforts to maintain a very lean weeks of supply, we've implemented a process to send in weekly replenishment orders based on the last week sales which makes a lot of sense, right. But now as Amazon is encouraging us to send in more and more and charging us more to send in less, we've had to weigh those costs and benefits of sending in shipments weekly. So now, depending on the size of the product, it might even be monthly that we're sending into Amazon, and we've been relying a lot on LTL shipments to save on prices. But now it seems like small parcel might be a little bit more cost effective for us in some cases. So it's definitely changed how we've managed this and I'm really interested to see how these fees potentially change moving into Q4, as we're sending in a ton of inventory into FBA and shipments just become so much more regular. Bradley Sutton: Yeah, okay, interesting. We've got Prime Day coming up in July and what you know. You've got a number of Prime Days under your belt. What are some things that you're planning on doing the same or and or differently as far as what kinds of deals, if any, you're doing, like how you tackle your PPC? Let's just have a quick Grace's Prime Day Playbook 2024. Grace: You know what I was thinking about this today, because Lightning Deals and Prime Exclusive Discounts are due by midnight and with all of these changes, and also I don't know if you've heard about the new return fee assessment happening on June 1st but this, I think, is going to have a huge impact on us and just our profitability and how much we're going to be able to afford on markdowns and promotions. Grace: So my theory, at least for Prime Day this year, is people are going to be a little bit less promotional just because of how hard it's been to be profitable with these new fees. But then again, there are those discount minimums that we need to meet in order to get that prime day badging which means so much to your sales. So for our top moving, best products, I'm still going to be at least 20% off, like I need the badging if I don't get the sales. It doesn't matter if I'm profitable or not, so I'm definitely be. I'm definitely going to be pulling back on some of the costs, like PPC, in order to fund my promotions. So I think, to answer your question succinctly, I will be definitely promoting steeply on my best products, but maybe my middle tier and my lower selling products. I might just keep those at full price because of profitability reasons. Bradley Sutton: Speaking of discounts and things like that. You know another thing that kind of rolled man 2024, when I think about it, the Q1 was just like a doozy for a few things. So the restrictions on, like coupons and discounts and, like you know, the sales history yeah, minimum discounts for coupons. Bradley Sutton: Yeah. So like, how has that effect? Like I mean, for me it didn't affect me too much on the coupon side, because I don't always use coupons. But what about you? Were you guys using coupons? And if so, has your strategy had to shift now? Grace: Yeah. So I wasn't even aware of the new discount minimums for coupons until I was looking at one of my listings and I was like why is my coupon not on? We used to really heavily do that like 5% coupon on one week, off the next week, five on the next week, just to keep some like badging on our listings Because we believe that has a really significant impact in like bestseller ranking and organic ranking and keywords. So we used to do that quite a lot. We're not doing that anymore just because we can't afford to be that steep of a discount on coupons. So we haven't actually come up with what our strategy is going to look like since that is so new. In the last like month-ish, we've kind of just been keeping our normal like promotion strategy and hopefully it doesn't impact sales too much. But that's something I can't answer right now. Bradley Sutton: Okay, yeah, a lot of this stuff is so new that it's going to take us all a little bit to try and figure out what. What we're going general PPC strategy you know PPC is they're doing more adding, as opposed to like taking stuff away or changing big rules. Like I hadn't added new video campaigns in a while like could have been maybe a year even and then I noticed, like a couple months ago, now all of a sudden I can do ASIN targeting video campaigns and keyword targeting video because I'm like, oh, that's new, that's pretty cool. But, like you know, Amazon's always launching new kinds of targeting and new kinds of, you know, what is it called for the sponsor brand? Is it like the vertical ads and things like that? What new-ish things are you doing, if any, on the advertising side? Grace: Yeah. So I agree with you. I think if you're not in Amazon every day, you're missing something. So that's something that I try to do. I'm not like actively in charge of PPC or managing campaigns, but I always like to stay abreast of like all the new different techniques and see how it works with the team. One thing that I'm really excited to try is the new store spotlight format, where you can actually click to different store pages in the sponsor brand placement, which I think looks really cool. If anything else, definitely, want to test to see if it drives extra sales. Grace: One thing for us that's challenging with sponsored brand ads, though, is as a reseller, and a lot of times we're not the exclusive reseller. Spending on sponsored ads for sponsored brands leads to sales for the brand but not necessarily sales for us. So if you're rotating in the buy box spend on sponsor brand, you're driving sales for the brand. It's not necessarily just for us. So how do we manage that? That's been a hot topic for us. Bradley Sutton: Are you personally doing anything on other platforms, be it Walmart, TikTok shop, or if so, or if not, is there anybody at your company who is focused on those channels? Grace: Yes, we are. We are really focused on TikTok shop right now. We've been using it more so as like an awareness driving tactic, more so than a sales driving tactic right now is a lot of the brands that we work with are more in a premium price point, so we've found that the TikTok items that work the best are really kind of almost that impulse item. So we've been using it to drive awareness, drive conversations around the products that we sell and the brands that we work with. And we've seen great halo effects on Amazon with branded search going up as engagement and content goes up for the brand on TikTok. So we've been using TikTok shop in that way. Grace: In terms of Walmart, that's always been a strategy for us. Transparently, Walmart just hasn't been a volume driver for us. It's been a steady but it hasn't really been a place that's warranted a ton of focus for us. But another marketplace that has been great for us is actually Target's marketplace, Target Plus, and that's been a key piece of our success, especially with working with brands who are looking for store placement at Target. For example, we've had a few items that we've listed on Target's marketplace that have done really well that have gotten the attention of a buyer and actually got store placement, which is really exciting. And at the end of the day, getting an item placed on shelves most of the time can drive more volume than a mid-tier listing on Amazon, so we tend to try to use that strategy. Bradley Sutton: How do you get on target these days, like wasn't it invite only back in the day or now that Target is adding that 360 or some kind of like? Grace: Yeah, I think it might still be invite only, but I know they've been actively adding a lot of sellers. I know that their back end is still quite archaic compared to what Amazon is. It's probably what Walmart was like four years ago. But I think it is still invite only but definitely something to reach out to your connections and see if you can get a connect with a Walmart e-comm buyer. Bradley Sutton: Yeah, I mean, that's what I've been saying about Walmart for years is the end game and the reason for Walmart.com. You know there's people who say, oh, you know, like you know a lot of the SKUs, I'll just have like 10% of my Amazon sales. No, you're not trying to. I mean sure, if it's profitable, why not increase your sales by 10%? But the main end game is you could get on the radar of Walmart buyers potentially and go 1P which increases. And then the next step is getting into 4,000 Walmart stores, which is like yes, is now going to dwarf your Amazon sales even. But on the target side totally makes sense. That you know there's not that many people buying. You know consumers buying stuff on Target compared to Walmart or Amazon's even less than Walmart. But then that's not the end game. The end game is if you can get well like, give me an example, some of those that you said you've been able to get them in Target stores, like those POs are for what? Like how many units? Like thousands, right? Grace: Yes, tens of thousands. Bradley Sutton: Tens of thousands, wow. Grace: And what's also really cool about Target's marketplace is that it's gated from a seller perspective. So once you list a product on Target, it is gated for you to sell it, which I know has become more and more an issue on Amazon, with unauthorized resellers and different brand protection strategies that are maybe a little bit gray market. So I think that's something that is really interesting to sellers who fight for the Buy Box on Amazon, and it's a little bit of a relief to be able to list it and not have to check it or wait for the Helium 10 notification to come up that the Buy Box has changed and also your advertising spend, as you can continue to advertise when you have a Buy Box. It's something that we love about Target. Bradley Sutton: Going back to Amazon, now. Let's say you've got a brand who's launching a new product, what is your go-to launch strategy these days? Obviously gone are the days of things like two-step URLs and search, find, buys and giveaways and things like that. So for your launch, are you just doing PPC and maybe having a lower price, or you're only launching stuff where there's already some kind of brand recognition, where you don't have to do too much special? Grace: We do both. So we've worked with brands who have sold on Amazon for a long time and already have hundreds of thousands of monthly searches for their brand on Amazon and we've also worked with brands that are brand new and maybe are selling a new product that doesn't quite fit into a category that exists yet on Amazon. From a review perspective, we definitely lean on Amazon Vine. I think it has been getting better - the quality of reviews and just the ease of use of that tool, just to ensure that we're adhering to Amazon's policies. But just from an overall launch strategy, we've been thinking about top of funnel marketing a lot more. It's easiest to win when you have branded search on Amazon already, just so you're showing up on that first page of search results. But we've been using we talked about TikTok shop. Using TikTok is a really important part of our launch strategy and also just advertising outside of Amazon. So working with content creators to introduce a brand or introduce a product, if it's like a new product line under a brand that maybe people are already familiar about, using promotion codes that type of thing, as well. Are you then those influencers sending people to a TikTok shop product, or sending people to go search on Amazon, or a mixture of both? Grace: We'll mostly send to TikTok shop, but we do see just like an organic halo effect and someone sees it on Amazon. They maybe have more trust for the marketplace and they go and try to find the product on Amazon. So we've got a couple of cool case studies on that. Bradley Sutton: I probably should have asked this at the beginning. But, just like you know, I know you don't have the numbers in front of you, but if you were to talk about last year's sales or projected 2024 over all the stuff that your company manages, what do you think it's going to be on Amazon, Walmart, TikTok shop and Target rough? You know I don't need exactly. Yeah. Grace: So our goal is always double every year and we have in the last two, three years, as we've expanded marketplaces, our brand partnerships and ASIN count. I think the ASIN count that I manage right now on Amazon is upwards of 50,000 ASINs, so we're always adding more products. It's so many. Grace: That's a topic for a different time of how frustrating that can be at some time. But I mean we're in the triple digit millions going into 2024, at least for the e-commerce side of things. So it's really exciting and there's a lot of growth ahead of us and I think the biggest challenge for us as a three-piece seller and a distributor is managing the profitability and the agency side of our house is looking a lot in terms of outlook is looking a lot more profitable for us. Bradley Sutton: Nice, nice. What about what's this number two thing, so the nine figures? Is Amazon only or everything together? I mean, obviously it's going to be everything, but does Amazon by itself hit that? Grace: Or not everything together? I mean yes, Amazon by itself hits that. Bradley Sutton: Okay, so what's number two then marketplace? Grace: Target. Bradley Sutton: Target over Walmart, what in the world? Grace: It is. It is. Bradley Sutton: What? That's a shocker. Grace: It is. But again, like I said, that we work with a lot more premium products and premium brands tend to lean more towards the Target customer rather than the Walmart customer. So it's probably Amazon, Target, Walmart, TikTok, right now, but that will probably change pretty rapidly. Bradley Sutton: For TikTok, where is the inventory coming from for the orders. Are you doing fulfilled by TikTok or is it coming from Amazon? Grace: No, we're doing MCF from Amazon FBA centers. We can also drop ship from our own 3PLs as well, but we like MCF cause it's easier on us. Bradley Sutton: Amazon strategies. You know like things are changing on Amazon. New data points you know come out like search query performance and new things in product opportunity. Explore just in the day, today, things of Amazon. What new things is part of your SOPs now. That maybe wasn't there two years ago. Or maybe you just think you've got some unique strategies even on something that's been around for a while because you know you can't get to nine figures without having some cool unique strategies. That's setting you apart from the competition. Grace: Yeah, I love using the Product Opportunity Explorer. It's now a daily part of what I do. I also use it to do competitive research, which might be a little bit different. So grabbing an ASIN that I'm interested in learning more about and looking at the customer insights, specifically around returns, which is a hot button topic, obviously, with this new fee coming into place with if your return rate is higher than what the threshold of the category is, there's new fees that come into play. So, just understanding what those negative insights are about your competing products and taking advantage of those in your content and I mean in your second image or in your first bullet point has been something that's worked really well for us. And as I'm going and I'm potentially auditing a new brand partner or I'm doing a pitch for new business, I'm always looking at that. I think the data that Amazon's been able to provide there is really useful and we've never had that access before. It's always been like here's how much they sell directionally. Here's what their seller ranking is. Here's the keywords that they rank on. Grace: Here's what the keyword sales are but, like, the actual sentiment from the customers is really interesting. And something that we like to use in our content Bradley Sutton: Favorite Helium 10 tool and why? Grace: I like the Cerebro. I love doing keyword research, as we just talked about and I think, finding those niche keywords and using those in your PPC. Even though it's an old strategy, it works and it's always changing and not everyone has auto campaigns anymore, so it's something that's really important to do and I still like to do it because I love to know, like, what's changing. And another, really important, like leading or trailing indicator either one would be like branded search around your competitors branded search, so just understanding how many people less are searching for your competitors versus you. I think that provides a really unique opportunity to win. Bradley Sutton: Okay. If I were to give you the keys to the Helium 10 Product Roadmap. Something you know like hey, you're in charge of all of our product team a tool or a feature or a function that we don't have that you need, what would it be? Grace: I have two, okay, I think I asked about this already but Target Plus. I'd love to get a plugin, cause I love your dashboard, where I can see, like all my different marketplaces US, Canada, Mexico, Walmart all of that rolled up into one. I know it's probably still far out, but that would be really cool to be able to see that. Maybe TikTok shop I don't know if that's coming or maybe Bradley Sutton: What would help on TikTok shop specifically? Grace: I really like the sales product performance. That's like when I come in the morning I'm like what sold yesterday. That's where I'm looking okay and that's probably my favorite part about selling on Amazon is just seeing what's selling and how I can sell more of it. And then the second piece of it would be a Walmart ask. I know there's a tool where we're able to see kind of what the sales are on the listings for Walmart. I think there's probably opportunity to get that tool just sharpened a little bit so we really can see where the opportunity is on Walmart. I think there's still a lot of questions from everyone on like who's winning on Walmart? Like we know like CPGs are winning, but what brands are winning? There's a lot of information about amazon brands who are winning, but I think Walmart's still a little bit of a Black Box. So any tools that are available from an Amazon perspective, rolling those out and sharpening them for Walmart, would be great too. Bradley Sutton: Cool, cool, all right. So, what other strategies can you help people with out there who you know like, obviously it. You know somebody might be listening to this and like, well, what does this apply to me? I'm not a nine figure, I'm not even an eight figure or even seven figure seller, but some strategies that you're doing that, hey, even if somebody's new on Amazon or maybe you know six figure seller, they could. They could definitely be doing something you haven't mentioned yet today. Grace: Yeah, I think I'm going to speak to specifically the apparel and footwear and jewelry sellers out there. It's really hard to manage the assortment and I know I manage the 50,000 ASIN count, but we've developed processes internally to make that a lot easier. And I know catalog management is probably a hot button topic for all those apparel sellers out there. Managing sizes, colors, widths, all of that, tracking the variations that's something we can help with. So, whether it's managing variations, bringing them into one listing, separating them out, testing variation strategy, that's something that's kind of niche that we do all the time with our footwear brands to see how we can gain more share of shelf or share of click on different keywords, mostly branded. And then there's also way different style guidelines for apparel and footwear and we've learned how to harness those and utilize those to the best of our abilities. So just know that you don't have to do that on your own. There's agencies and sellers out there that specialize in just that and can help you free up your time to work on the strategic stuff and we can handle the catalog management side of it. Bradley Sutton: Last question I guess would be you know, I'm assuming maybe you might use some AI things, especially having to manage so many listings like have you leverage AI in your amazon management business and, if so, how? Grace: Yes, we've definitely started utilizing it from a copy perspective. We use a bunch of different AI tools, but one thing that's worked for us is taking our keyword research, plugging it into pick the engine that you want to use, give them your product description and have them help at least get a starting point for what your bullet points and your title should be. It just saves so much time instead of sitting there and being like okay, here are my keywords, here's what I want to say, but I don't need to type all of it out on my own. So, yes, it's not going to be perfect, but it's a great place to start and, honestly, a great place to start with really anything, whether it's Amazon copy images or even just writing an email to a brand partner or a proposal to leadership it. Leadership Like it's just a super helpful tool that'll save time across the board. Bradley Sutton: Cool. Cool. All right. Last non-Amazon question. I see your Instagram. You're traveling a lot, favorite travel spots and what's on the bucket list for you that you haven't been to? Grace: Oh, my gosh. Okay. So recently my friends and I rented a beach house in Oak Island, North Carolina. It's like a tiny little town on the coast, but it was so beautiful and so fun and it was like a great way to disconnect. We literally saw dolphins from our balcony. It's like so cool. Bradley Sutton: Wow. Grace: So that was really fun. I was just kind of wholesome and nice to be able to unplug a little bit, although I never truly unplugged because slightly addicted to selling on amazon. Um, that's why we're here, right. And then, in terms of bucket list, I've never been to Europe, which is crazy. I need to get to Italy. I'm such a wine person, I'm such a like I love food. So that is on my bucket list. I hope I can get out in the next few years. Bradley Sutton: Maybe get your boss to send you to. We're doing a it's not Italy, but nearby to Madrid. End of May we are doing a workshop, high-end workshop, in Madrid. So, that could be an opportunity to business expense for your company and learn some new strategies. And you get to, you know, maybe make a side trip to Italy on your own dime. So if anybody else is interested, I'll know. I going to try and get Grace to go. h10.me/elitespain. It's open to everybody to join. All right, well, Grace, thank you so much for coming on here. It's been great to see all that you've accomplished on Amazon. I wish you the best of success in the future and maybe we'll bring you back on and let's see how you know how deep into the hundreds of millions that your company has been able to sell next year. Grace: I want to plug. I have an amazing team. This is not just me. I just happen to be the voice of them so I want to make sure I give them a shout out too. Bradley Sutton: If somebody wants to like maybe find you on the interwebs. I mean you can be incognito if you want, you don’t have to answer this. But how can they find you out there? Grace: Yeah, so if you're interested in services from PowerPlay, powerplayretail.com, find us on LinkedIn. Otherwise, you can find me on Instagram or LinkedIn. I'm also like a LinkedIn crazy person, so I will respond probably in the first one minute but that's the easiest way to reach me. Bradley Sutton: Is the founder of your company, like a hockey fan or something. Is that the name? Is that where PowerPlay comes from? Grace: I get that question a lot. No, but we always like use that as kind of like a hook, and we're also in Minnesota so hockey and Minnesota. Bradley Sutton: So that's what I was about to say. Minnesota is a hockey. Yeah, okay, all right, well, Grace. Grace: PowerPlay Hockey Jerseys, so I will say. Bradley Sutton: Hey, you know me about my Helium 10 jersey, so I'm all about those jerseys. All right. Well, thank you so much for joining us and I hope to see you at maybe what Amazon Accelerate in Seattle, where's the next one. Grace: Yeah, I'll be at Accelerate. I'll be bopping around to different conferences but maybe I'll see you in Spain. Bradley Sutton: Hey, let's do it. Let's do it, all right, we'll see you later, Grace.
5/11/202433 minutes, 3 seconds
Episode Artwork

#559 - Can I Still Sell My Amazon Business in 2024?

Ever dreamt of cashing out big time on your Amazon business? Scott Deetz of the Northbound Group, an Amazon business exit expert, joins us today to unravel the strategies that could lead to a windfall sale in 2024. His expertise in the shifting sands of Amazon acquisitions is not just a beacon for those sailing towards a lucrative exit, but a lifeline for those aiming to navigate the complex seas of e-commerce business sales. Together, let’s dissect the importance of positioning your business as an alluring catch for an array of buyers, from eager individual investors to the more discerning eyes of private equity firms. Scott shares golden nuggets on how diversifying your business and sharpening your niche can amplify your business's appeal and, crucially, its final selling price. The conversation takes a turn towards the post-sale horizon, where your involvement could sweeten the deal even more. We dive into the world of non-competes and post-sale roles, revealing how your sustained presence and niche passion might command a higher premium and ensure a smoother transition for the new owners. Moreover, Scott illuminates the strategic planning and negotiation maneuvers that can elevate your business from a standard market offering to a premium, sought-after asset. With his guidance, even the most veiled aspects of exit planning become clear, from managing the intricacies of your financials to negotiating earnouts that benefit both parties. Wrapping up, we pivot to the ultimate goal: securing seven to eight-figure exits that transform your financial landscape. Scott's advice ranges from the practical—such as maintaining a robust product pipeline and savvy capital management—to the tactical, like understanding the fresh impact Amazon fees may have on the buyer's calculus. In episode 559 of the Serious Sellers Podcast, Bradley and Scott discuss: 00:00 - Amazon Business Exit Strategies in 2024 05:19 - Evolution of Successful Amazon Business Exits  07:07 - Maximizing Amazon Seller Exit Strategies 16:11 - Financial Freedom and Business Exit Strategies  16:28 - Maximizing Business Exits With Strategic Planning 22:08 - Exit Planning and Negotiation Strategies 25:03 - Maximizing Business Value Through Strategic Planning 28:25 - Strategies for 7-8 Figure Exits 31:08 - Capital Strategy for Business Growth 34:43 - The Importance of Business Forecasting 36:00 - Actionable Knowledge and Contact Information ► Instagram: instagram.com/serioussellerspodcast ► Free Amazon Seller Chrome Extension: https://h10.me/extension ► Sign Up For Helium 10: https://h10.me/signup  (Use SSP10 To Save 10% For Life) ► Learn How To Sell on Amazon: https://h10.me/ft ► Watch The Podcasts On YouTube: youtube.com/@Helium10/videos Transcript Bradley Sutton: Is exiting your business just a dream now, in 2024? Are people and companies still buying Amazon businesses? Today's guest is going to talk about a deal he just helped close for an Amazon seller that got him a payday in the millions of dollars. How cool is that? Pretty cool, I think. Bradley Sutton: And before we get started, just a quick shout out I want you guys to make sure to check out our Helium 10 Elite program. If you want to get in private meetings with Kevin King, you want to have one-on-one calls with me and Carrie and get some exclusive help, get access to certain cool exclusive training, like the exit ticket, like we're going to talk about today, make sure to go to h10.me/Elite and find out all the benefits of this program. As a matter of fact, we've got a special workshop that we are doing in person only for Elite members in Madrid, and I was just talking to our guest today, Scott, that you know. We tried to get him to go out there, but the schedules couldn't make it. But we'll have to get you out to one of these Elite workshops soon. Scott huh? Scott: Sounds great Absolutely. Bradley Sutton: Might not be in Madrid, though, like that's kind of like a one-time thing. We'll have to pick one of your other bucket list places. But anyway, Scott, you know you've been on the podcast a few times. You know you're one of the world's most known experts as far as how to exit your Amazon business and setting up. You know your company for exit, but in case you know, this might be one of the somebody's first episode listening to you, just maybe a little bit of brief background on your self-introduction. Scott: Yeah, so no, happy to be back here again. I got my start. I've been an entrepreneur all my life and I completed my first exit. It was a software technology company. A little over 20 years now. I tried to do it myself and I actually screwed it up, and then I met my mentor, who was an investment banker, which is another name for a broker. He helped us exit and the short version is he got more than three times the price that I would have gotten on my own, and when that check cleared, I recognized that I needed to pay it forward, so to speak, and spend a lot of my time in my life helping entrepreneurs get what they deserve out of their company. So, I've been doing that ever since, after taking some time off, and then I found Amazon 2013. Just really at the beginning of the sort of FBA journey, started up Northbound Group, which is the investment banking firm that I co-founded in 2016. And essentially, the purpose was to help anybody that was either a physical good seller, like a Helium 10 client, or tech and tech-enabled software that works within this industry, to be able to get the valuation that they deserve and, more importantly even than that, structure it in a way that meets their life goals. So I've been doing it ever since and you know we've done a significant number of exits in the space probably, you know, six or $700 million worth of exits up until this point, and it's really fun to help entrepreneurs kind of get that life-changing payday. Bradley Sutton: You got to prepare something special. Once you hit that one billion, you know whichever seller is going to help you hit that one billion mark. You got to have something special for them. But if you guys want to get more of his backstories, it's funny, I just looked it up what episodes he was in. This was not planned at all, but his first episode was 295. His second episode he was on was 395. So this one is not going to be. We already passed 495, but, uh, but there we go, I, I, uh. If you guys want to get some more of his backstory, uh, make sure to check that out Now. Uh, the first thing I wanted to talk about today was, you know, 2024,. Um, this conversation about exiting is probably completely not completely very different than the conversations we had, uh, in episodes 295 and 395, which might've been at the peak of the aggregator space and things. Somebody might think, oh, wait a minute, I thought aggregators were done. Does this mean that pretty much, I have no chance to sell my business anymore in 2024. How can you correct that erroneous thought? Scott: Yeah, absolutely so. First thing is yeah, just about everything has changed, but I don't look at it as any more changes than what sellers experience on the platform right. Amazon comes out with new algorithms, there's new techniques, DSP advertising, all those things. We live in an industry that has that. My answer to it is twofold.  First of all, more than half the money you're ever going to get from your business and actually put in your own pocket not leaving in your business comes from when you exit. So you know, I always like to say that fundamental is the one thing that hasn't changed, whether it was three years ago or now. And the reality is for most people. You're building up an inventory business. You're putting a lot of your money back into funding your growth and that exit is what gets you that out of your business and into your personal account. So, said differently, more than 50 cents out of every dollar that you ever take home will come through your exit. So if you're not doing that last step, you're going to. You know you're giving up more than half the money. You're leaving it out on the table. So the fundamental need hasn't changed. What has changed is the type of business that you're going to need to have in order to get a successful exit, and we can spend more time talking about that. Scott: But the easiest way that I like to describe it was three years ago you could get a very high multiple for a company that wasn't really a business, it was just sort of a collection of successful products. Now you need to be thinking more about this as a real business with an audience, with a brand, with a cohesion to it. Three years ago, you could sell an Amazon business if it had five products in automotive and five products in supplement. Well, today you know, people are much more focused. They're smarter buyers out there. So the demand for why you should do it hasn't changed a bit. The way that you go about it needs to be more sophisticated because the buyers are more sophisticated. But to your last point, there are still a lot of buyers that are out there, not only the aggregators that have now merged and kind of gotten through the difficulties, but a lot of what are referred to as financial and strategic buyers beyond the aggregators. That can be exit opportunities for you. Bradley Sutton: I mean, I know there are still some aggregators out there, but other than that, what kind of companies or are they mainly individuals just looking to invest? Who's buying Amazon businesses these days? Scott: Yeah, sure, so it does vary. A lot of things vary by sort of size. So if I'm thinking about, if I want to build up a business and let's say I get the business to be a small business, it's maybe making $200,000 to $500,000 worth of profit in a year. Maybe it's selling around a million dollars. The type of buyer for that is not going to be the aggregators as much anymore. It's going to be more, like you said, individual buyers that are looking for a good return on their money. But also what we're finding is a lot of our larger Amazon sellers themselves are now looking to expand into new niches or to expand in their current niche. So you take an Amazon seller that sold their business three years ago for $5 to $10 million. They're now faced with the decision do I decide to start from scratch or do I find a small business that I could apply some capital to and grow it faster? And you'll find those types of buyers I will call them individual buyers in the smaller size market. Scott: When you get over a half a million dollars worth of earnings in the business, that opens up now kind of the aggregators, and they're still out there. There's less of them. They're more focused on niches. But the key part is if you're in a specific niche, you'll have a good chance for an exit. What you can't do now that you maybe could get away with three years ago is you can't just say I'm an Amazon business and I've got a bunch of products in a bunch of different categories. That is much a harder exit to do because it's no longer just about optimizing on Amazon, it's about really having a customer channel and a pipeline. And then if you get over a million dollars worth of profit, if you are a larger seller out there, your options also start to include what are referred to as private equity companies. And you're now big enough that a company that is in the business of owning companies that's essentially what a private equity company does they will look to you as what's called a bolt-on to one of their existing platforms. So let's say they bought a large business in health and beauty and you're in a niche of health and beauty and they can continue to expand their reach and capability. You start to open yourself up to that buyer. And then the top niche, which is a very small minority. But for those people out there, if you get north of three or $4 million of profit yourself and you become a very large seller. Then you can actually go to the private equity companies directly and become what's referred to as a platform company, which means that they may then look to have you buy other types of businesses underneath your organization. Bradley Sutton: I'm not 100% sure I remember this correctly, but I vaguely remember, you know, in one of your previous episodes asking uh about, like, the importance of multi-channel. Like me, you know, maybe I'm not a gigantic seller, but hey, you know, like our two people does, does it increase my valuation if I, if I already started selling on Walmart or had my own website, and if I remember, like I'm not sure which one it was, you know it wasn't, it didn't seem to be too big of a thing. Is that still the case now? Or is it now more important? Does it give you some more valuation if you are established on some other platforms instead of just an Amazon USA exclusive company? And when I say other platforms, I also mean, you know, Amazon Germany or Amazon Japan, like what are some things that do add value to your valuation? Scott: Yeah, it is more value today than it was maybe a few years ago. So, I think that that is correct. I'm going to say that with a couple of caveats. The first one is that the diversification is really what you're referring to, right? The number one thing that my mentor taught me that I have lived with now for 20 years is we have to remember that it's not what the seller is selling, it's what the buyer is buying, and the easiest way I explain that to an Amazon seller is it's the same thing that you do on your product listing every day.  You speak in terms of the benefits that your customer is going to have when they buy your particular product. It's the same thing with your particular business. So, what is the benefit that your buyer is going to get when they acquire your business? And one of the things that they think about first is all of the things that can go wrong and all of the risk that might be in the business, and diversifying across channels reduces risks. Scott: So if I've got all of the least diversified Amazon business would be. I'm on Amazon.com only and I have 80% of my revenue is in one product SKU right If that SKU goes down game over. So if you think about diversification of risk, you can diversify in a few different directions. One of them is diversifying by number of products out there. Okay, so, even if I'm all on Amazon.com but I have, you know, 25 or 30 products that are out there and no one product has, you know, 25% of my revenue, that's one level of diversification. The next level of diversification that I would encourage people to explore would be diversification by Amazon marketplace. So, like you said, whether it be Canada or the UK or Europe, diversing by marketplace. The next level of diversification would be by other marketplaces. So think Walmart.com or other types, if you're in a niche of pets being on Chewy or other types of things. And then the next one is diversifying by e-commerce, and that would be think of that as Shopify direct to consumer, where it's a different. You're not on a marketplace Now, you're driving your own traffic. And then the next level of diversification is if you get into retail and wholesale. Scott: So, for each business here's the key point I listed them from the easiest to do to the hardest, typically. And so you don't want to diversify just for diversification sake, because each channel that you bring up has to be a meaningful amount of revenue and profit. Otherwise, it's more of a distraction than a diversification. So if, for example, if I'm going to diversify into Europe, I want to make sure that my European presence is, at a minimum, 10 to 15% of my profits as the US. If I diversify and I only do two or three or 4% now, I'm maintaining a whole bunch more work in my business but I'm not really adding meaningfully to the value of it. So the rule of thumb that I like to use is that any channel that you bring up, you'd like to have it be able to be 15% of your main channel's revenue. So if you're doing a million dollars on Amazon in revenue and you diversify to Shopify, you'd like to be able to be doing, over a course of a certain amount of time, 150 to 200,000 at similar profit margins. When you can do that, it is definitely more value because it shows the buyer that your brand is valued and it also diversifies the risk across multiple platforms. Bradley Sutton: I'm going to go back to the beginning, a little bit about how some people can start to get ready, but just to skip to the end, you don't have to give names or specific details, but just to help people understand what's happening, 2023, 2024, with what the potential is, can you give us a rough picture of a recent exit that an Amazon seller had, like maybe you know some details? Like hey, they started selling Amazon three years ago and they built it up to this amount of sales and they just had an exit for this amount and now they're living full-time on a cruise ship. I don't know, just uh, talk a little bit about a cool, inspiring story you know about, just so people understand the importance of this conversation that we're having here, what it could mean for them. Scott: Yeah, absolutely. I'll give an example of a transaction that we did. Let's call it maybe around the beginning part of the year. So I had a seller that was on Amazon, grew up the brand, tried to diversify off from Amazon, actually really struggled. It did not go well. The performance of the company went down. They repositioned the company around some different types of products. We started taking them to market call it middle of last year. We completed an exit sort of Q1 of this year, and think of it in this terms. We like to think of it as everything is a multiple times your profitability. So think of it as they had grown up and by profitability we refer to something called EBITDA or net profit, and so they had gotten the company. It had struggled. It had gone down to where it was only maybe as low as $100,000 a year profit when COVID and everything was changing, Very nervous about could they keep going forward. They doubled down, they worked really hard, they got the profitability up to north of a million dollars and we were able to exit the company for around what's called a four and a half multiple, which meant that if you had a million dollars of profit, you multiply that times 4.5. So you got a $4.5 million exit and what was really exciting about that one was that they sort of tasted defeat. They were really successful and they're really the story of sticking to it. Scott: They had to change a lot of things, a lot of stressful times. They could have given up when it was at its low point and literally walked away from it, buckled down, really figured it out, repositioned some of the products and product lines, got it back to that level and now they have an earn out on top of that, which, for people on the call, just means that, in addition to the initial amount, they have an ability to earn more. If the business does well, they're helping the buyer out for a year and they have a chance to get you know, call it between five and a half or, you know around maybe five and a half million dollars. So really fun and exciting. Someone I'd known in the industry for a while and obviously, depending on where you want to live and how you want to live, that goes a long way toward setting your financial freedom in place so that you can go decide what you want to go do in life. Bradley Sutton: Yeah, okay, that's pretty good, that's pretty cool. That's a big payday for that person. I think for anybody listening to this episode, we would be happy to have something like that as a goal. Now I'm just curious. I don't know if I've ever asked you this before, but from when I talk to people who have exited, there seems to be like two different ways. Like sometimes they're just like complete exits, like they have nothing to do at all with the business anymore. It's like you know they maybe check on it every now and then just to see how the, how their baby is doing on Amazon. And there's others where it's like they stay on as advisors and they even have a, you know, something built into the contract, where they still get a piece of the profits in the future as long as they consult, and things like that. What's more common nowadays? And would you suggest that somebody does one over the other? Scott: Yeah, this is a big area where the market has shifted, because the original thesis three years ago by the aggregators was I can run these businesses better than this small little seller that doesn't know what they're doing. What they found out was is that? The answer to that is generally no. The marketer that understood the niche, that understood the audience, that was passionate about it, is a valuable part of the equation and we've always taken that approach. So most of the exits that we have done and I would actually recommend that most sellers think in these terms is you used to be able to exit a business and then leave within 60 or 90 days transition and a lot of people, when they think about an exit, they think about I'm going to get one check at closing for 100% of my business and then I'm done within 60 days. The reality is that those types of buyers are often what I refer to as bottom feeders. They're paying you 100% cash up front and they're generally going to offer you a lower valuation than anybody else. So think of it as back to if I have a half a million dollars of profit and I could exit, an all cash buyer might be willing to offer you two times your profit, or a million dollars. Okay, the buyers that will be willing to pay more. Scott: One of the other things my mentor taught me was Scott always ask the question who should pay the most? And the person that should pay the most is somebody that values not just the SKUs but the skills that you bring to the equation, and they don't want to be dependent on you, but they want a good handoff period. So I like to tell people, think in terms of staying on and I would rather get you a multiple of three and have, you know, 30% of it contingent on you staying on and the business going well, than a multiple of two because it's all upside. And so I think you should be thinking in terms of staying on for six months to a year, depending on how complex your business is. A premium buyer is going to ask you to bear about 25 to 30% of the deal in some sort of contingency, and then there's two types of contingencies. There's what's called an earn out or a stabilization payment and the problem that a lot of people I'm sure people have heard about this in the industry. A lot of people didn't hit those because they sold to a buyer let's say it was an aggregator and the profits went down and it was what's called a cliff. It just fell off, they didn't hit, they got $0 on their earn out. We like to do a lot more of what are called rolled equity or synthetic rolled equity, where it's not a cliff, it's just a percentage of the deal that gets paid out pro rata based on how well it does, and so there's more to go into maybe than the scope of this. But if you're interested in getting a premium deal, recognize that if you can stay on and give the buyer comfort that they're going to be getting a good business and you can help it continue to succeed and continue to grow, you can earn a lot more because the buyer is going to be. You know. It's a true win-win deal as opposed to a sell and a walk away. Bradley Sutton: Another question I was thinking about when it comes to exits and I'm no legal expert, but I'm just wondering if this something I saw on the news has anything to do with the exit businesses. I know in the past, like, let's say, my coffin shelf business is 10 times as big as it is and then I sold it. Like usually that person would want me to sign some kind of maybe like non-compete, where I'm not going to go the day after I sell the business and start a new coffin shelf company to compete with them. But does this new ruling that I read about non-competes are not allowed or something in the employment world non-competes are not allowed or something in the employment world does that have anything to do with the exit, where now aggregators or buyers of businesses can't get the seller to agree that they are not going to dabble in that niche anymore, or what's going on with that? Scott: Yeah, so this is a really good point and I'll make the point about the non-compete and then I'll talk about a little bit more globally. Specifically, regarding non-competes, the legislation that is being proposed in certain types of states like California is that you can't have employment non-competes, but has not extended to what are called acquisition non-competes. So when you're buying an asset and you're a buyer, you can still require the seller to not compete in the niche. And the broader point is that all of these things become negotiating points with a particular buyer. So we like to negotiate what are called really narrow non-competes, which will essentially mean that in your example, I will not compete with any product, that I will not start up a new business that has any product that is directly or sometimes indirectly competitive. Some buyers will come to you and the most broadest is they'll say you cannot do anything when you sell me the business you're in supplements. You have to be out of the supplements category really really broad non-compete. So it's very important that you recognize that there's two things that are going on in the deal there's the economic terms and then there's all of the legal terms and negotiations that are going on. Scott: How do you make sure that your you know your buyer has enough money to be able to pay your earnouts? Or, if you haven't paid your sales taxes for your off Amazon sales, does that kill a deal? We just did a deal where there were some unpaid sales tax liability to the tune of more than a million dollars, but we still got the deal done. We just negotiated it that that money went into an escrow and then we were able to save the deal, so to speak. So I think it's really important as a seller, you know and I found this out when I did my first deal, and you know now we've done dozens and dozens and dozens of them you just keep getting better at understanding what are the best terms to negotiate, which is why I recommend whether you use a northbound or anybody else in the space. It really isn't something to try and do yourself, because you really need. Your job is to be the good person that the buyer likes you. My job isn't to be liked, but it's to be respected and to know what is the market that my client deserves. And so there's a natural call it mutton, jeff or however you want to look at it, there's a natural tension on the system that you want to have and you want to be able to push on and negotiate these terms, like non-competes and other ones, as aggressively as possible to protect yourself. Bradley Sutton: All right, Good to know. Good to know Now. You recently updated your module in our Freedom Ticket course. This is the one that all Helium 10 paying members have access to, regardless of the level, or even the starter plan has access. A brief overview of what you talk about in the module. I know we touched on some of the subjects today, but what is somebody who is a Helium 10 member? They can literally, after listening to this episode, go into Freedom Ticket and switch or go to your module. What are they going to learn in that one? Scott: Yeah, why I was excited to put it together and we put a lot of time into doing it is the key thing is that it talks about is exit planning from day one, and so the way that I like to think about it is, the time that you figure out how you should get out of a business is before you get into it, and so the exit ticket program. It's broken up into six modules. It starts out and it's got a workbook that goes along with it, and it starts out with you as an owner. What do you want out of this business? If you want to exit this business for $2 million, that's a lot different than for $20 million. So what niche you go in, what products you select? It goes through all of that first. Then what it does is it helps you. In module two, it helps you understand your finances. So for many Amazon sellers, they're more marketers than finance and they need someone to give them an understanding of what's important financially to have accurate, but I want it specific to e-commerce. I don't want to go learn a general accounting class, and so module two is it's all about the numbers. Module three then talks all about the buyers. So if I have to start thinking from. This buyer is my ultimate customer mindset, because that's what they really are. How do I learn more about what they value? Scott: Then module four goes into what I like to refer to as the mini exits. How do I raise capital for my business? How do I maybe bring on a partner? How do I reward a key employee as I grow? But there's usually about five or six key inflection points that you're doing when you're growing your business that have a huge impact on the value of your business. So that's module four, and then it moves sequentially to module five and six, which are essentially how do I go through the deal process itself? What do I need to have ready? It's something called a data room. What do I need to put in there so that I know that I'm doing this correctly? And then how do I negotiate a premium transaction for my business? So the thing I like about it is, even if you're not thinking about exiting right now, we built it in a way that it gives you the chronological journey for how to do everything right and when you put all of those things together, that's what's going to give you the highest likelihood of hitting that other 50 cents on the dollar payday of actually getting a successful exit. So for me, that's what I think, people, wherever you are in your Amazon journey, you might not need to go through all six modules at once, but start getting in there and start thinking about this, because it is a critically important topic and it takes a little bit of time to really digest how you want to go about doing it. So why not start early? Bradley Sutton: So everybody, after this call, if you have a starter up plan, get the base, the first module which is just recently updated in Freedom Ticket in your you just hit your learning hub on the top of your screen in your Helium 10 dashboard. So hit Freedom Ticket 4.0. and on the left hand side, go hit financial fundamentals and then his module right here, preparing your e-commerce business for exit right here, this good looking guy with a northbound shirt that you might recognize is going to be right there. And then, once you got that foundation, then definitely, if you're a dime member or above, go to the exit ticket program that he highlighted. All there a very, a lot of lot of modules there. There's, there's, you know, a good um, you know 10, 20 different videos on different topics. That, really, from A to Z, is going to help you get your company ready for exit. And again, like, like he said, you know this isn't something that, oh, you don't need to start thinking about this once you hit the seven figure or eight figure mark. You know, from day one, he, you know, Scott really has always said that you need to be preparing for that. So make sure to go to Exit Ticket. Bradley Sutton: If you want more information on the Exit Ticket program, go to h10.me/exitticket, h10.me/exitticket. Just some strategies for some of the newer sellers, but they've got some lofty aspirations. I'm not just some person who's doing arbitrage or wholesale which there's nothing wrong with doing but I'm trying to build a private label empire here and I do want to exit one day and have that four or $5 million payday like somebody else you just mentioned just got. What are some things I can be doing right now, today, to put myself get started on the right foot here? Scott: Yeah, so a couple of things come to mind. First of all, this point about why you want to study learning how to exit. One of the phrases I like to use is what's good for selling a business is usually really good for running a business as well, and so a lot of the strategies that you'll learn in the full exit ticket program, or even in the module as a part of Freedom Ticket, these are good things that are going to help you run a better business, so it's very important for that. You think, from that lens, for those of you that are really going for a seven or an eight-figure exit, there's a couple things I'd like to say. Number one is it can happen. We have taken dozens of e-commerce entrepreneurs that were just like you. They were starting out maybe five, six years ago, and we've done exits that 35 million, 20 million, we've done 60 million. These big exits, they can happen, and so it's a mindset thing. I'm not saying everybody needs to go for that big of an exit, but I just want to let you know that there is a market for these types of businesses to be able to exit for seven and eight figures. Scott: The key part that I would really focus on is two things. One of them is having a brand such that you can always bring out new products, because, whether it be on Amazon or other marketplaces, there's a shelf life to products, and so you have to always be thinking about you know how can I continue to successfully launch new products? A lot of people will you know they'll get a couple of good products going and then they kind of get you know. They rest on their heels a little bit there. I always like to think about you need to really focus on always having new products in your pipeline. And then the second thing that I would really focus on is getting very clear understanding of not just what's called your accrual profit. Accrual profit is very important to understand because that's how you're actually valued and the way to think about it is if I sell $1,000 worth of products and they cost me $200, I match the amount of costs that I have to the revenue, so it's what's called a smoother way of tracking it. But what most people don't focus a lot on and that's in the full exit ticket program is your cash flow and making sure that you have enough resources, whether it be debt, that you have access to line of credit or whether or not it be inventory financing. Scott: But as you grow, you're going to find you increasingly need what's called networking capital, and so I think from that side of things, I would really say to people make sure you kind of understand what's the cash that I'm going to need in the next year to actually launch these products successfully. Because a lot of people will think of it as, oh, it only cost me like $5,000 to launch a product. Well, that's the initial order, but if that thing is going to be successful, it's probably going to cost you $30,000 or $40,000 to scale up your orders in terms of cash flow into it. And so sometimes you'll find people that they'll say, oh, I'm going to launch five products, but they don't have $200,000 of free cash to be able to do it. You launch them, they run out of stock and you do that. So that would be other than the typical things that you might get with your Helium 10 tools. The thing I really would encourage you to focus on is the people that we see get the seven and eight figure exits. They almost always build, they have good launching capabilities, they've got good products, but almost all of them have found a way whether they're raising equity from I call it rich uncle Bob who's going to put $50,000 and say, hey, I'm in the Amazon game, or whether or not it's a lender or something. Scott: But you are going to need to figure out a capital strategy which leads to and we help people with capital strategy all the time at Northbound. And the one adage I've learned I've been an entrepreneur for 30 some years now is the time to raise money and get financing is when you don't need it, because nobody ever wants to give you money when you need it, and so you've got to be thinking. It's kind of the exact opposite. You get a successful couple products that's a great time to show profitability in the company and get a line of credit from someone, and then you use that. But if you actually need the money, then it seems like nobody's out there to borrow it to you. So that'd be a few things I'd really focus people know your numbers really well and figure out how you're going to grow and raise money to grow. Bradley Sutton: All right, two questions we as Amazon sellers and thinking about selling our business. What should we be thinking about that you find that most people out there aren't thinking about? And then the second thing maybe deals that started already happening early January or something that are still in process. Are you seeing some of these new Amazon fees affecting it? Like are some buyers getting a little bit hesitant? Like, wait a minute, I think the profit's going down. Or maybe some sellers like, oh my goodness, like I'm having to pay these new fees. Like are buyers going to get cold feet? So let's go ahead and close it off with those two questions there. Scott: Yeah, yeah. So the first one that I think about is most sellers don't spend enough time learning about buyers. So what I would say to you is take 5% of your time, two hours a week, and start thinking about your exit. And don't do it on a Monday when you're stressed out or something like that or you're burnt out, but really just say if more than half my money is gonna come from an exit, I'm gonna start spending 5% of my time and I'm gonna just start thinking about if I'm let's just say I'm in the automotive niche, who are the automotive buyers that are out there? I'm gonna start researching them. I encourage everybody, two or three years before you want to exit, just calling up a buyer and scheduling a meeting and learning how do they think about it. Go through courses like Exit Ticket. The smarter that you understand your buyer, the more you'll be kind of building it for that particular buyer segment. Now, I'm not saying you'll know your buyer by name, but you should start to learn your buyer by category and start to think about what they value. For example, a lot of them want to have a minimum of 15% profit margin, so you might as well learn that that's what the rules of the game are and start learning how to talk their language. And the analogy I use for that in the Midwest is you can't just go at harvest time and try and harvest. You have to plant the seeds early and you got to grow it, and that's the same thing for your business. You have to think about what is going to make my business exitable and then start building toward that. Scott: And then the second. I think the second thing that you talked about is Amazon is always changing fees. You've got different levels of profitability. Absolutely, buyers are going to be only concerned about what the future profitability of the business looks like. They may calculate it based on something called your trailing 12 months earnings, which basically means your profit for the last year, but they don't get a dime of the profit that you had the last year. You already blew that out in Vegas or whatever it is that you did with it. All they care about is the future profitability of your business. So at Northbound we spend an enormous amount of time presenting a very logical forecast, and I encourage sellers that's probably another thing. I would say not enough sellers spend enough time doing is actually forecasting the growth of your business out into the future, even though it's going to change. The better you can show a buyer what the potential of the business is, the better you can break out of a low multiple and really show them that. And so if your forecast is showing that with new Amazon fees you're getting less profitable, well then you're going to have to account for that and be able to explain that you're either raising prices or you're shifting your inventory strategy or those different types of things. Scott: But really the key to that is having a really solid understanding of what start with. Don't make it too complicated, but start with all of your products that you already have in your funnel. List the number of sales that you make per day and forecast out for the rest of 2024. And then list in any new products that you're going to do. Do the exact same exercise. Look at your you know, do I get a holiday bump or not? And start to be thinking about your business in what I call looking through the car's dashboard. Don't just look out the front window, don't just look in the rearview mirror, and that's another big thing that people get too busy to forecast and then they don't really understand and set goals for their business. Bradley Sutton: 100%, 100%. Well, Scott, thank you so much for all this actionable knowledge that you dropped on us. If anybody wants to reach out guys, don't forget to go to hubHelium10.com. Just type in Northbound and there'll be a contact form right there and links to Scott's website. Hit that get in touch button right there and Scott and his team will be more than happy to help you guys out with your exit questions. Scott, thank you so much for joining us and although, sad, I can't see you in Madrid, I'm sure we'll link up at a conference soon. Scott: Okay, that sounds great. All right, take care, Bradley. Thanks a lot.
5/7/202436 minutes, 36 seconds
Episode Artwork

#558 - Amazon Brand Building, Celebrity Partnerships & More!

Have you ever wondered what it takes to build a brand that thrives in the crowded e-commerce marketplace? Janelle Page, a brand-building expert, joins us today to unfold the strategies behind her success. She's the mastermind who's been turning heads with her product launches, teaming with celebrities and YouTubers to elevate brands to unprecedented levels. Janelle breaks down the art of weaving brand identity and storytelling into products that not only look good but solve real-world problems. From stylish protective eyewear to celebrity-backed health supplements, tune in to learn how Janelle's approach is revolutionizing the industry. When it comes to spreading the word about a brand, influencer marketing is the game-changer. In this episode, we dissect how to navigate through this landscape, striking genuine partnerships and leveraging platforms like TikTok and Amazon to maintain brand momentum. We get into the nitty-gritty of budgeting for influencer campaigns, the secret sauce of engaging organically with online communities, and the savvy of paid advertising to funnel traffic. Whether you've got a hefty budget to play with or you're scrappy and bootstrapping your way up, this episode is packed with actionable insights to help your brand shine. Beyond the confines of Amazon lies a vast expanse of e-commerce potential waiting to be tapped. This episode paints the transformative journey of Dolce Foglia, a brand that's soaring by mastering a clever blend of SEO and influencer marketing, with a strong B2B backbone. Janelle shares the blueprint for expanding into international marketplaces and prepping for the future of global online trade. If you're eager to discover the next chapter in your brand's story or just love a good entrepreneurial success tale, this heart-to-heart is your front-row ticket to inspiration. In episode 558 of the Serious Sellers Podcast, Bradley and Janelle discuss: 00:00 - Brand Building Strategies With Janelle 01:18 - Entrepreneurial Success and Brand Partnerships 08:36 - Influencer Marketing Strategies and Tips 15:27 - Choosing the Best Marketplaces for Launch 16:35 - Maximizing Sales With Amazon and Shopify 22:57 - Building Brands Through Storytelling 25:52 - Product Launch Strategy Without Revealing Secrets 31:34 - Expanding E-Commerce Success Beyond Amazon 31:58 - Expanding Amazon Brand Into Other Marketplaces Transcript Bradley Sutton: Today we've got Janelle back on. The show sold over 100 million dollars in her time on Amazon and other platforms, and now she's working with a lot of celebrities and YouTubers to launch their brands and she's going to share her best brand building strategies with you all today. How cool is that? Pretty cool, I think. Hello, everybody, and welcome to another episode of the Serious Sellers Podcast by Helium 10. I'm your host, Bradley Sutton, and this is the show. That's a completely BS-free, unscripted and unrehearsed organic conversation about serious strategies for serious sellers of any level in the e-commerce world. And, as we do, we start off these episodes with a serious strategy. And, as we do, we start off these episodes with a serious strategy. And one thing hope you guys know that in Helium 10, there is a full inventory management tool, and that's exactly how I am able to manage all of my accounts in just a couple of minutes a week, making sure I don't run out. I don't have too much inventory in Amazon. So if you guys want to find out more information about our inventory management, go to h10.me/inventorymanagement. And now we've got somebody who has done everything from inventory management to launching brands, to working with celebrities and whatnot. We got Janelle back. I believe this is the third time you're now on our show. Welcome back, Janelle. Janelle Hey, thank you, Bradley, it's a pleasure. I always enjoy shooting the bull with you and learning what you've been up to too. Bradley Sutton: I love it. I love it. Now. In the past, you've been on episodes. By the way, if anybody wants to check out her full backstory episode 294 and episode 401, you can hear about how she was working for companies that were doing nine figures a year on Amazon. We talked about stuff like my love for red iguana, uh, Mexican food from her, uh, salt Lake, uh, where she's at now. But we want to catch up because we haven't had you on since, like December of 2022. So you know, around that time, you were talking a lot about how you had done this crazy Shopify launch. I did $500,000 in a weekend and you were doing Kickstarter launches and stuff like that launch. I did $500,000 in a weekend and you were doing Kickstarter launches and stuff like that. So, since that time, what has been your? Janelle main things like in 2023 and now almost halfway through 2024? Wow gosh, I didn't realize it had been so long since we last talked. So last year I was saying 2023, I think I did over six or seven new brand launches and even like brand new brands and also new products, and they were all six to seven figure launches Shopify, and then we moved to Amazon. I've been partnering with YouTube, YouTube celebrities I guess we call them YouTubers and celebrities to build products and brands and that's what I've been doing. So I mean we could probably include links to a lot of those products or whatever would be the easiest way if people wanted to go check them out. But we did a power tool line Athena power tools. We've done more products with Matt's off road recovery If anyone's familiar with that YouTuber super, super fun channel. We did shop shades with John Malecki. He's an incredible carpenter, woodworker. Janelle He does like live edge furniture and those river tables We've launched these totally sexy like protective eyewear, personal protective eyewear Cause, like you know, safe is sexy and usually like the if you think about traditionally eyewear, like for people who are in the woodworking industry, they're like ugly, they're hideous, they're these big plastic goggles and nobody wears them. So you know, he even noticed in his own shop, like my people aren't wearing their protective eyewear. Heck, I don't even want to wear my protective eyewear. It was kind of a thing. So he came to me with this idea like I want to make, like you know, the Oakley or like the sexy shop shade. Janelle So maybe we'll throw some links because these products they turned out beautiful, the branding which you know I kind of love. That's why I'm seeing I want to make it super sexy. Super was a. Oh, Dr. Eckberg, we launched his supplement line, did incredible. So you've XCS. So I'll throw those links, cause I always think it's so helpful for people to see. I think when you you do a killer launch, you gotta have a killer video, you gotta have a great brand, the look and feel, the storytelling, and if they just go to my landing pages and check it out, I think maybe they'll get some ideas for their brands. Bradley Sutton: Okay, Now you know you're talking about brand building. That's actually part of your module that you recently recorded for the new Freedom Ticket 4.0. Anybody who's a Helium 10 member can go get that module. But what were some of the main points from there as far as brand building, and why do you think it's probably more important than ever before here in 2024 to talk about this subject? Janelle Yeah, definitely go check out the module, but for me, that's the only way I know how to build and sell brands. Is I build a brand Like I didn't come to Amazon, the traditional way that some people, like they use tools to look up, like what the top selling products are and they try to enter into, you know, the market and create something that already has search, demand, the customer and like thinking about, like a problem that I have. Or when I partner with, like, say, a celebrity or YouTuber, there's usually, like I was just saying with John, a problem that he wants to solve, like hey, man, I don't want to wear my personal protective eyewear because it's hot, ugly and I can't see through it and it's there's. I look like a goon and I'm on YouTube trying to look cool, so I don't want to wear this, so that's want to solve. I always tell someone if you've got a problem that you want solved, there's a chance that there's a lot of people like you out there that also want to solve that problem, and so that's how I approach a brand. Janelle Building a brand is first, let's solve a problem for a person, and I keep that person in mind Because then when you're trying to think well, which product should I launch next? It's like well, what other problems does a person a carpenter or woodworker have that I can solve? Because John is the avatar. He's intimately acquainted with all the frustrations or the opportunities within the realm of a serious or even just a hobbyist woodworker, and so you know the next product he starts talking about that he gets passionate about. He's like man, I want like a pocket chisel. You know like, yeah, you have like pocket knives that like you know like a switchblade or things like that, like guys like tools, it's like a power tool. But this is like not a power tool, it's like a cool like. Can you imagine having when you're doing woodworking, like a chisel is just kind of like a boring tool, but it's actually something they use a lot when you're doing like live edge type furniture work. So why not make a pocket ch almost like a switchblade? That becomes super cool and fun that people would geek out about. If you're a woodworker, you know, and so you have this ability to start creating stories and products to serve that person that you can geek out about. Janelle I just got off a console I was doing with a client that they own. Basically they're a wholesaler of ATV parts. You know the side-by-sides stuff like Polaris, St. Polaris, Hondas and stuff and they were asking for brand help because they're like we just feel like we're just hawking wares all day long. We really want to be a brand. So I spent the hour talking to them like how could this I haven't said the client name, but how could you become like the Tesla in the side-by-side space? That's what they want to be. They want to be the premium go-to innovation, like if, if you are into ATVs, this is the brand for you, because they have everything and anything under the sun and the way that they teach and educate and innovate is going to be, you know, heads up, shoulders above everybody else, instead of just selling a bunch of parts on Amazon or on their website. Janelle So that's what we're working to create. What's the story going to be? You know how do we convey that in our messaging. What's the look and feel like, who is our avatar? So we spent the whole time fleshing that out and you know they're excited now. Now they have a very clear direction on what type of content they're going to create, what type of ads, like messaging, to attract that ideal customer. And also we created a product roadmap for them. Like, where do we go next with our line extensions that will best serve this person that we now have in mind with everything that we do in our brand? So we create this movement kind of a thing. Bradley Sutton: You've talked about working with YouTubers, celebrities and stuff, and obviously I think when people come with that personal brand awareness, it's a leg up on the competitions. You've already got a bunch of raving fans and it doesn't necessarily have to be celebrities. Everybody might have some kind of specialty. I used to do the Zumba stuff and so I had probably a following on YouTube and stuff, and so that would have been something where, first of all, just like you said, I would have known the pain points that maybe other Zumba instructors had or people dancing Zumba, and then I already had the initial following. So I always think that if somebody does have something, yes, you should double down. Bradley Sutton: That being said, let's flip the switch. You know I'm sure you have clients who are not celebrities, so they're not YouTubers, they're not famous. So how do you and that's actually most of our listeners, you know potentially might not have a following? So if I'm just you know, joe entrepreneur, sally entrepreneur sitting out there listening to this podcast, how can I do what you just said? But where I kind of maybe don't have that headstart on the audience and the people who know me, etc. Janelle Love it? That's a great question. So, like there's people that you can hire that do this right and you can do it yourself. You can reinvent the wheel Like I have a vast network now. So when I am working with clients I usually will just be like hey, here's my guy that will build your influencer marketing program in-house. Like we're going to use him, like I have options, like we can do the training we can. I can show you how we've built it out and you know you can do this. Or I can bring in this guy and he will do it in three months and it's this amount of investment and you will have like a fully flown, blown out, like gifting program, influencer marketing program which, honestly today, like it's the fastest way to grow a brand like influencer marketing. So if you don't have the audience, you aren't the influence and you don't partner with one, you've got to build out an influencer program and you know there's a lot of people that take oh, do you use, join brands or use. You know like, uh, drawing a blank on all the 50,000 I've used over the years, but really it's, there's so many softwares now you can use and to have someone in house all day long just reaching out and doing gifting and getting influencer content Cause the thing with the influencer marketing why it's so beautiful is not only do you get these people posting on your behalf about your product, but they also create content for you that you can amplify. With paid, you can run ads behind it. That's the best type of content and the highest converting ad material that you're going to get is content from actual people using your products and talking about what they love about it Social proof built right in. So brands I think that everyone knows that that's what you need to do now to like generate traffic, generate brand awareness. Janelle And Amazon, to me, is like this ecosystem. I always think like, think of a wheel right, and there's all these different sales channels and Amazon is just one spoke in that wheel. It's a very important spoke, but your website's a spoke. You know Walmart.com is a spoke. You've got retail. You've got affiliates. You've got I mean how many other places that you sell? I don't know. Janelle I've sold on so many different marketplaces Temu, you know, TikTok shop. There's so many spokes now and I don't like to have just one that I rely on. All of these make my wheel run true, right and spin like a flywheel and I can get speed. So when I think about that, with influencer marketing, anytime we build out this influencer wheelhouse, which we need, or influencer marketing program, they're going to be driving sales on Amazon website Temu, TikTok. It doesn't matter, I am I am sales channel agnostic. What I'm doing primarily when I build a brand is I'm creating desire, demand and a movement so people can buy wherever they want to buy. Okay, so influencer marketing today is just. It's just how we market best. It's how I do it. It's been very successful. Bradley Sutton: Let's say I don't have that huge of a budget. Is TikTok the most economical way to find potential influencers? Or should I go use one of those services? Janelle Yeah, yeah, yeah. So Instagram, YouTube, TikTok, all those Influencers are on a lot of different platforms. I really like having a well diversified like just how I diversify in my investments. Yeah, have influencers on all types of platforms, but how to go find them? I mean, you're going to need to have. I say, if you want to launch a brand, you're going to need to have a budget to give away product or get product in people's hands, like you should plan on that. That's why sometimes you know, I see all these gurus on you know whatever YouTube or in my feed running ads saying you can make millions. You know, starting an Amazon business and you know, with only $2,000 investment and I'm just like man, that's so not true. You need money to get the product and the development and you've got to buy inventory, and then you're going to have a budget to give product, you and you've got to buy inventory and then you're going to have a budget to give product. You know, get product in people's hands to get some feedback or just some traction, or you've got to pay for it. You have to generate sales somehow. You have to generate awareness somehow. That's paid or that's organic or you can use your time. I do want to suggest and I have done this the scrappy way because I have more money than time now I will short circuit things by paying ads. It's the fastest way to generate traffic. Buy it right. If you don't, if you have more time than you have money, then there's organic strategies that work incredibly well. Janelle I mean 10 years ago, how I built my brands, when I had no influencer marketing strategy and I had no celebrities. I was partnering with is. I was literally in Facebook communities, on Reddit, and I was posting in communities that had people like me. I knew where my avatar was. So, like, let's just say, right now I'm working on that celebrity line with the Huffs they're dancers, right, let's pretend that I didn't have celebrities. But I wanted to create a supplement line for artistic athletes or dancers. I would be on every subreddit right now that has, you know, artistic athletes or dancers in their hip hop. Um, you know Zumba, like you said, salsa, cha-cha, tango, and I'd be talking about my product and what I've developed and what I'm working on. I'd start just from conception, taking them through that whole journey. I think there's been some great books written over the years, like show your work. Um, you know, build out loud, like taking them along on the journey, getting feedback the whole way, so that I start building that audience right. And then also Facebook. There's groups. There's so many Facebook groups about dancing. Janelle Right now I'm working with a brand that does flavoring right, and so we're in every group that has a baker's, confectioner's, like coffee makers anyone that's like would use flavoring we're in there. We're asking questions all the time about a new flavor we're developing, wondering if anyone has any. You know new flavors they want developed. We ask them about pricing. We ask them about bundles and people are like, oh, you can't make sales. You know posts in those groups where you get kicked out. I'm like, yeah, don't make sales posts. Get in there and ask questions, like I'm just doing. I'm like literally just put together what I call a Mother's Day bundle and I wanted to ask the group what would you pay, you know, for these products if I put them in a Mother's Day bundle? Like what would be the discount that you think would be like motivating you know to grab this and are these the three flavors that you think most mothers would like, based on, you know, the flavors that we offer? That post gets through all day long and I have all these people telling me what they think I should add, you know, for my mother's day, or the essential baking, you know, um, flavors that should be included in the bundle. You can just kind of be strategic. I think people are so like intellectually lazy or they're just looking for excuses to not have to do something. They're like, oh, that doesn't work. I'm like man, you're pathetic, like you couldn't figure out how to make that work. Like you know, just put a little elbow grease into that. So much free traffic. So now I don't do that anymore with my time, but it's one of the first hires I make is a VA. That's just my organic poster in these, in these forums, adding value. They're in there answering questions. Janelle The thing about you guys I think Helium 10 did this so well originally, um, and you still do it. You're in these Amazon groups and even in your own groups that you've cultivated on Facebook, answering questions. When somebody asks a question, you could count on Bradley answering it. I know you're not maybe doing that anymore, but you have people doing it. That's huge for the brand Any business. You can build a business like that in any industry. When I just built my marketing company. That's what I was doing. I was in chamber of commerce, answering posts, answering questions. I literally helped a guy I was dating. He was an electrician and he was like I don't have a lot of business. I'm like dude, get on Facebook in your county and every little like real estate group anyone that asks an electrical question you have someone that is just chiming in and answering and adding value, like you will have so much business coming out your eyeballs. It works, so just get in there and start organically drumming up your business if you don't have a lot of money but you have more time. Bradley Sutton: You know, let's say I'm going ahead and I'm going to push forward with this plan. You know, supplements, the supplements that you've done, the other products that you've been doing. What are your main marketplaces? You're starting off, you know, like you said, there's like 20 marketplaces probably nowadays. You know even Target now, you know, is starting something. Obviously, there's Walmart, there's TikTok shop, there's eBay, Esty, amazon, you know, like Shopify, WooCommerce, whatever. Do you have like a set, two or three that you suggest launching on, because it sounds like, unless I'm mistaken here, that you rarely do something that's exclusively Amazon or exclusively one marketplace. So what are like your two, three, four go-to marketplaces for somebody to start? Janelle Okay, perfect, yeah, so if it's a celebrity launch or YouTube or someone with an audience already like and I know I'm going to do six figures or a million dollars, it's like it's always Shopify, cause, like we control the audience, we have a list or we have a channel like a platform we're going to be posting on. We're going to control that flow of traffic, and the best place to do that is on your own website. So we drive them to Shopify. I've done Kickstarters. I do have strategies for Kickstarters that I will talk about maybe some other time. Just send them to your website. Shopify now allows pre-sales too. So even if you're like nervous, you don't know, like, will I get enough funding or I want to pre-sell it, you can do a pre-sell. The shop shades that I'll maybe include a link to that was all a pre-sell that we did. You know, we didn't know, like, how many units we'd want to initially order, how much interest there would be, but like, yeah, we, we blew it out of the water. So Shopify is number one. If, even if you didn't, if you didn't have any audience at all, then I'd probably say launch on Amazon, right, because you're going to steal keyword traffic. You're going to be like, basically, take the hotdog stand and instead of sitting it in your cul-de-sac where nobody's at, you're going to go to the state fair and put your hot dog stand out. You're going to sell a lot more stuff. So, even with celebrity launches, if you do Shopify, you know whatever or influencer, you have an audience. It's definitely Shopify or whatever. Your own website, I don't care if it's WordPress, but I really just love Shopify now because I just know, like the suite of apps that I need to install for everything, for optimization and you know, increasing average order value and my ATV, and you know I just have my little toolbox for high converting. You know Shopify sites, but I know some people like a WordPress site, fine, but go to Amazon for sure. Like we list everything on Amazon because there's just still a subset of people that want to buy everything on Amazon. It's just so easy for them. You know, and we call those Halo sales. Even with my celebrities and my YouTube launches, we still have a large portion of people that will go over to Amazon, even though it's not listed yet, and you can see that in Helium 10, you can see the branded search. Janelle So when I launched Euvexia that's a brand, new brand. Nobody had heard of it. This is Dr Sten. You know he has a pretty large following, like a couple million, on YouTube. They went and we see all of a sudden Helium 10, Euvexia has searches like overnight shooting up right. So we created that brand demand and you know we weren't on amazon yet because we didn't have products shipped in there. We just launched on our website. So, yeah, we probably lost some sales, people who wanted to buy it on amazon. Maybe you can say well, maybe everyone who wanted it actually ended up buying on your, on your site. But I I do believe a lot of people won't buy on a website. They're just like, especially the older generation they don't want to put their credit card in, they don't want to have another password, they have to whatever. So I just think you're silly to not list on Amazon and I have strategies that you know. We have one of my very large brands. We will hold back certain products that we don't list on Amazon because we still want that consumer to come to our website ultimately, so that we can capture their information, we can pixel them, we can remarket to them and so some of our best used or like our limited editions won't ever go on Amazon because people have to go buy that on our website. So there's different strategies you can use, but just make sure the halo sales that you will get on Amazon especially as you incorporate influencer marketing, you start doing paid media, even you know, creating some organic like where you're blogging or you're doing YouTube and you're just driving your own traffic You'll have people that will still go to the Amazon looking for your product, that halo sales, and you want to be there to capture it. So, website, amazon those are the top two. If you didn't do anything else, you'd probably be just great. You're probably capturing 80% of the market. Janelle I then will usually move to other Amazon places. First I'll go to Walmart.com. Usually it just depends A lot of my brands because we're in the beauty space. We can't be on Walmart if we also want to be in Ulta or Sephora, so we have to keep that in mind. So Walmart.com is not always where I can go, but I do like to go to Walmart.com if I can. And then it's expanding. Amazon Canada, amazon UK those are my order that I go to. I haven't played around with many other marketplaces. I know it seems that everyone starts being like oh, you should do Amazon India, and there's Amazon Japan. I tried a couple of those. It was very minimal return. I'm not saying it won't ever work, but for me right now no, I don't have anyone on Brazil, Japan, so yeah. Bradley Sutton: You mentioned Shopify being the first place to go, so obviously the beauty about Amazon is it's got that existing traffic Shopify you won, remember, I think before I was even a Amazon. Janelle I don't want to say, I don't want to refer to myself as an. Bradley Sutton: Amazon guru. Janelle People always call me Amazon guru, but before Amazon was like a big thing that I spent a lot of time teaching people how to do well, Um, YouTube was my thing and I still love YouTube. I still do. Uh, in fact, today I do a consult for YouTube channel strategy. I've done a lot, built a lot of channels and brands on YouTube and I think YouTube is one of the greatest ways to drive traffic. And same thing with blogging. You do that with content articles you can write. So a strong SEO strategy where you're bringing in traffic to your website. So I'm a I'm a big content creation junkie because it works. So people will say, oh, I mean, I tried YouTube. I didn't get any traffic. I'm like you have to understand YouTube is an algorithm, just like Amazon, and you know how. Helium 10 has great courses teaching you how to understand the A9 algorithm. YouTube has the exact same thing. There's courses. I have courses and we teach, we consult. There's lots of people out there that do that and teach you how to build a YouTube strategy to drive traffic to wherever you want them to go. Strategy to drive traffic to wherever you want them to go. Usually it's your website and a lot of that YouTube strategy also will carry over to Halo sales on Amazon. So that's probably my favorite way influencer marketing and content creation, your own content creation. The brand should always be creating content and educating to drive sales. That's how you control your destiny. You add value. You teach people why they should use your product. You help them solve their problems. You help them scratch their itch. You become the go to person and the trusted brand in your, in your space. Bradley Sutton: You know you mentioned some steps as far as finding that, these pain points and stuff. You know going into Reddit and going into Facebook groups, but but talk more about your process before your, before the actual product is made. You know, like you know, are you doing a lot of samples? Are you just getting some? You know like 20 samples and actually testing it in the market. Are you just deciding that on your own? Are you getting focus groups, like? What's your entire process about? That goes from, hey, finding that initial pain point to validating it and then all the way up to actually having a product. Janelle Yeah, yeah, yeah. This is funny because I don't do. I mean I do now because I understand the value of creating the story, but I guess I've been in marketing long enough that I know the power of a story and a story well told. So I always just say story, sell right. And so I guess I know that I can tell a story that will be compelling. And when I first started, my very first brand was a toy brand and I just knew I would crush it because the story was like kids were sitting around on their iPads and playing video games all day. And this was like in 2014, when everyone's like there was no e-sports team, there wasn't kids making millions of dollars, you know, playing video games. It was like grandma and mom were so, so, deathly concerned that their kids were all going to have their brains turned to mush. And so I create this kick fire classics brand line and the whole story is just going to be like good old fashioned fun get your kids off their butts and outside of playing. And I knew that if I ran ads in front of every mom and grandma about these classic toys, that they could get Johnny to get them off the iPad and you get outside, you know, flying a kite or playing with juggling balls or you know the Diablo, it would sell. It was just I didn't need to do market validation that that that whole sentiment existed. I was a mom and I hung out with moms and they were all having the same, you know, battle cry of like our kids are, you know, they don't know how to get outside and have fun. So that that was. I launched the brand, I told that story and it crushed, you know. Janelle And then my second brand was a weight loss supplement and I'm like I understand, as a woman living in America, like everyone wants to be thin, you know, and you have to bust your butt to stay thin and and if you can create a weight loss, a meal replacement weight loss shake that tastes good, that helps people lose weight, and you tell that story and you have, you know, results, it's going to sell. So I guess I don't really ever go into a market. I've never. Even now I'm like right now, with this celebrity supplement, like we have created the whole product line, the core four. We're doing a stack right and I work with Derek and Julianne Huff who are these beautiful artistic athletes and they're very well known in the space. I think that's easy because they have followers and they're going to, no matter what they say. You know, we could probably one of our investors is like you could just, you know, bottle dog poop and put it in a bottle and people would buy it. And that's not what we want to do. But you know that's how well-known they are and trusted in the space. But I really don't even think we had to validate anything, but because I understand the power of story and I want to build a movement and a community. Janelle I am getting people involved, I am getting their audience to. You know, we are doing what we call a pilot run, which is not everybody does. It's kind of more expensive, it's unheard of but and I wouldn't say unheard of a lot of people it's heard of but people don't do it because the extra time and cost. I want to do it as part of the story, because Derek and Julianne, this works for them. But I want to get it into the hands of their top dancers, like Derek's on tour right now and he's got, you know, he's like 50 to 100 dancers with him. What if I can get all of them using this right now and giving us feedback. You know that's going to create content, that's going to create story and I just want, on tour for the media, to see all of his dancers backstage pouring their little powder packets from the foil and being like what is this stuff that everyone's taking? It's kind of creating that curiosity and building hype. Janelle So I'm doing this strategically for my own PR, but I don't need to do this, but I want to to make the story better, if that makes sense. It's like, uh, Paulo Acosta, who does you know his secret juice? And he has that bottle and he has secret juice written on the outside. If you don't know who he is, he's a UFC fighter. Just Google it. He drinks that and everyone wants to know what the hell is in that juice that he's drinking. It's brilliant. It creates such a stir and you know what it's like. We're going to go launch him a supplement drink and then everyone's going to know what was in that dang bottle, right? So that's the thought behind a product launch. When you can build that, everyone's kind of excited. They know you've been working on something. I started posting and teasing out content with Derek and Julianne just on my own socials and they're teasing it out and that's going to be a part of the huge buildup to the launch. If you have an audience, that works great. If you don't have an audience, this also works really well to build the audience as you go along, because people want to be a part of something and feel like they're helping create this product. Bradley Sutton: What is just some other, just general strategy Can be about anything you want to talk about. That that, hey, our audience could probably learn a thing or two from your experience. Janelle Gosh, you know, sometimes we I really enjoyed your session that you did at BDSS. It was more like life stuff. I think sometimes we all talking about you know business, business and you you talked about your like near death experience. I'm going to say near-death you died. You literally died and got brought back to life, right. So I think, just like the longer and maybe this happens as we get older, like we're more generative, we start thinking about, like what kind of legacy do I want to leave? Like I know, like earlier, when I was in the grind, I mean I was a single mom with four kids under the age of five, like hustling, working like four or five jobs, like I had to bust my ass to get where I am Right. And now I feel like I'm really just so blessed or lucky or I mean whatever it is. Janelle I've been very fortunate in my career. I play a lot of pickleball, I get to travel the world, I spend a lot of time with kids, I work with incredible brands, incredible people and I think, just remembering that, you know what like there's, I don't know, you do have to pay the dues, you have to work hard, but we're doing it all for a reason. There can be joy. I've always been happy. I can look back in every phase and it's not like I was like man. That period of my life sucked. It was like that building was super incredible, and to be where I am now and to look back it even makes it such an even more happy memory. To be like I busted my ass and I'm here now and it was all worth it and I love what I'm doing. I even love the hard part shoveling manure in the trenches and so I just maybe reminding people that, like, remember why you're doing it and if you're not enjoying the doing of it, when you get to where you're trying to go, it won't be all of a sudden beautiful, like there has to be that magic along the way. I don't know. Janelle I just think if you wake up too many days in a row thinking that I don't want to do this, like you're not doing the right thing, and then I don't know what comes next, I don't know if there's another life and I mean I just want to be able to say this life I lived my best life and so Whatever that means to you. Maybe just take a moment to look at your life and how you're living. Is this your best life and are there any changes that you need to make? Because you almost didn't have a second chance. You know, and it was over and I think you have a new perspective. I have a new perspective. I lost a lot of people I love just in the last few years to cancer. They died young and I'm so grateful I'm alive and I don't take that for granted every day. I'm just like it is a gift and I just I love making money. Bradley Sutton: Always got to remember the more important things. You know like, like we, sometimes we can get caught up in the whole business and an entrepreneurial journey and stuff and we forget about what really what really matters at the end of the day. So that's a good, good advice. I like that. Janelle Favorite end of the day. So that's a good um, yeah, good advice. I like that favorite helium 10 tool. I'm like magnet. I'm just like. The keyword research tool for me is just like I go look up all the time. I think this is the one I use the most and all my employees is like did you do the keyword research? Like what does it look like? And you get ideas too. Like when I'm doing keyword research, I can see like whoa, this is a good product extension. Like you know, in the search, in the search results, when I see like like the other day I was doing you know, with Glamnetic, we're doing some press on nail launches, and I was just like, oh, like, people are looking, they're calling them false nails. Like I never really even heard of that, you know word. I thought it was press on nails or fake nails, but false nails. So I just think it's a, it's a treasure trove, not only to you can get product ideas from there. And it's like, okay, well, I'm going to do a whole new line. That's like optimized for faults, that whole word Cause there's like hundreds of thousands of searches that can, you know, aggregate on that right there. So I think it's important. Bradley Sutton: You know, you mentioned, uh, you know so many different, different things that you've been working on. How can people, maybe you know, find you on the interwebs out there or see a couple of these projects you're working on, either in social or just websites out there? Uh, throughout some, websites. 0:30:23 - Janelle Okay, so janellepage.com is is my website, and then there's also on that website you'll see like I probably should update it, but there's a lot of projects I've worked on on that website. So it's j-a-n-e-l-l-e-p-a-g-e like a page in the book.com. You can go there and then, like shopshades.com. Euvexia is E-U-V-E-X-I-Acom. Athena Power Tools let's see Vital Kind. We don't have our website up yet, but in a couple months you'll be able to see Derek and Julianne's brand that we'll be launching, working right now with some really big pickleball pros. We're launching a pickleball line, so that'll be exciting. Don't have the name yet, the name yet, but I'll start posting about that as we develop it. We have our kickoff meeting on Monday. Um, I don't know if we put anything in the notes. Oh, matt's off-road recovery. You can check out that. Robbylayton.com, um, oh, m1 motorsports that's our motorcycle line. Glamnetics a great line, gee, is that. Is that good enough or they can all be like that's good, that's great stuff. Bradley Sutton: I'm sure people get to be able to get some ideas and take a look at what you've been working on. Janelle That one's a hard one to spell, but that one and flavor frenzy. They're beautiful Cause they were originally Amazon brands that didn't have a clue about DTC and I helped them build out their DTC strategy and we're crushing and B2B, so we built out that whole thing. So Dolce Foglia is like D O L C E Foglia is F O G L I A com, and you will see the beautiful website we've built. Just think how fun because if these if a lot of the listeners are Amazon only brands, I want them to see like what you can do. They went from Amazon. Now they have a true e-commerce where we have full build out of like SEO strategy and influencer marketing and we built out the B2B side. It'll link you over to their B2B flavor frenzy and maybe just get you excited about the potential. Let's was like literally just an Amazon brand that's now crushing on all different platforms and we're moving into like Temu and all these other different I guess I didn't talk about any of those Like a lot of other countries have marketplaces that are like bigger than Amazon, as we start to list there. Bradley Sutton: So that's maybe something we can see in a year when we have you back on the show and see how those marketplaces are doing. I know a lot of them are making a lot of noise out there, so it'll be interesting, all right. Well, Janelle, thank you so much for joining us. It's always a pleasure to have you on the show and look forward to where we can hang out in person soon. Janelle Awesome Thanks, Bradley.
5/4/202432 minutes, 40 seconds
Episode Artwork

Helium 10 Buzz 5/2/24: Amazon Inventory Fee Postponed | 500K TikTok Shop Sellers

We’re back with another episode of the Weekly Buzz with Helium 10’s Sr Brand Evangelist, Shivali Patel. Every week, we cover the latest breaking news in the Amazon, Walmart, and E-commerce space, interview someone you need to hear from and provide a training tip for the week. TikTok Shop tops 500,000 US sellers after 2023 e-commerce launch https://www.scmp.com/tech/tech-trends/article/3261114/tiktok-shop-tops-500000-us-sellers-after-2023-e-commerce-launch TikTok Shop Marks 500,000+ Merchants in the US https://www.pymnts.com/news/social-commerce/2024/tiktok-shop-marks-500000-merchants-in-the-us/ Amazon’s latest actions against fake review brokers: Lawsuits against fraudsters target the source of fake reviews https://www.aboutamazon.com/news/policy-news-views/amazons-latest-actions-against-fake-review-brokers Amazon Business Celebrates Third Annual Small Business Month with New Immersive Educational Hub and Over $250,000 in Grants https://press.aboutamazon.com/2024/5/amazon-business-celebrates-third-annual-small-business-month-with-new-immersive-educational-hub-and-over-250-000-in-grants Amazon issued a new policy update in seller forums regarding low-inventory fees. Moving from defense to offense in the Amazon marketplace, our conversation shifts to the art of strategic advertising. We lay out how to use sponsored brand and product ads to not only protect your listings but also to proactively stake your claim in new territories. Carrie Miller unpacks the wisdom behind a proactive approach, providing practical advice on employing competitor analysis to your advantage. Together, we outline how to harness these insights for defending against competitors eyeing your listings and for targeting theirs, ensuring that you remain a formidable presence amidst the fierce online selling arena. In this episode of the Weekly Buzz by Helium 10, Shivali talks about: 00:50 - 500K TikTok Shop Sellers 02:43 - New Amazon Discount Page 04:16 - Amazon Fake Reviews 05:43 - Amazon FedEx Shipping 06:05 - Amazon Grants 06:26 - Low Inventory Fee Postponed 08:26 - Helium 10 New Feature Alerts 10:44 - Training Tip Of The Week
5/2/202412 minutes, 27 seconds
Episode Artwork

#557 - Two Expats Turn Amazon Side Hustle into a Booming Business

Join us as we explore the incredible journey of Tom Reid and Alex Birch of Honest FBA, two UK expats who have made a name for themselves as Amazon entrepreneurs in the sunny climes of Spain. They've successfully launched a booming business that's on track to hit a remarkable two million dollars in sales. Throughout our conversation, these innovative thinkers share their personal experiences, from their individual paths to Barcelona, where their paths crossed, to the strategies that propelled their Amazon venture to new heights. They offer valuable insights into the world of e-commerce, including a glimpse into Tom's previous venture organizing bachelor parties and how they've navigated the complexities of Brexit as UK citizens abroad. Listen in as these entrepreneurial spirits delve into the nuts and bolts of their business, from an inflatable games venture to a travel brand that was smartly sidestepped just before the pandemic. Discover how they succeeded in the pet space within the Amazon US market, generating impressive sales figures and expanding into content creation with a YouTube channel and coaching course. They provide actionable advice on inventory management and product innovation, recounting both their victories and hiccups, such as a costly inventory dimension miscalculation, while emphasizing the importance of adapting and reinvesting in the face of product failures. The episode wraps up with a forward-looking discussion on brand building and the intricacies of scaling a significant e-commerce brand. Our guests highlight the vital role of a strong brand presence, not just on Amazon but across multiple channels, and the use of external marketing efforts to drive growth. They also tease an upcoming London event and a future Helium 10 event in Spain, marking milestones and networking opportunities that promise to inspire and connect like-minded entrepreneurs. So whether you're an established seller or just starting out, tune in for an engaging session brimming with lessons and strategies to elevate your e-commerce game. In episode 557 of the Serious Sellers Podcast, Bradley, Alex, and Tom discuss: 00:00 - Expat Entrepreneurs Launch Amazon Business 05:34 - From Lockdown to Seven Figures 07:11 - Amazon Entrepreneur Journey and Strategies 09:41 - Growth in Annual Sales Performance 14:32 - Amazon Sellers Discuss Product Success  14:49 - Branding and Supply Chain Success 19:12 - Thinking Outside the Box With Subscriptions 24:13 - E-Commerce Brand Building Strategies 26:40 - Amazon Event in London With Sponsorship 31:46 - International Event Plans and Goals
4/30/202432 minutes, 9 seconds
Episode Artwork

#556 - Crafting Your Amazon Listing for SEO

Ever felt like you've hit a wall with your Amazon listings, unsure how to climb the ranks? Our latest episode is the secret weapon you've been searching for! We dive into Helium 10's Listing Builder, a tool that's changing the game for sellers by revealing how to prioritize keywords using the new Competitor Performance Score. Picture your products climbing Amazon's search results as we dissect the art of optimizing listings with advanced strategies that include leveraging root keywords and their variations. And for those moments when words fail you, discover how Listing Builder's AI feature can effortlessly craft captivating product descriptions. The battlefield of Amazon is won through intelligence, and we're not talking about IQ. In this tactical session, Bradley pulls back the curtain on importing and scrutinizing your current listings against the competition. We navigate the listing analysis section, showcasing how to pinpoint underutilized keywords that could be your secret ammunition for visibility. Imagine transforming your product images with the touch of a button through the AI image generator feature, leaving your competitors wondering how you do it. This chapter isn't just about throwing in keywords; it's about strategic placement and analysis that propel your listings to new heights. Closing out, our journey with our Project X products illustrates how to optimize listings with finesse, responding in real-time to questions about differentiation and opportunity keywords. If you've ever second-guessed which Helium 10 membership fits you best on your journey, or how to sync listings without a hiccup, you'll find your answers here. We wrap up with an arsenal of tips and tricks, from saving and restoring previous listings to pinpointing those elusive low competition, high demand products. It's not just about listing; it's about dominating—let's get your products the spotlight they deserve. In episode 556 of the Serious Sellers Podcast, Bradley talks about: 00:00 - Listing Optimization Training and Q&A 02:57 - Keyword Optimization Strategy Simplified 07:46 - Optimizing Existing Listings Against Competitors 16:14 - Amazon Listing Optimization Strategies 16:50 - Understanding Opportunity Keywords in Cerebro 26:58 - Amazon Review Request Guidelines 27:53 - Amazon Selling Tips and Strategies 29:57 - Optimal Title Length for Niche 33:39 - Keyword Stuffing Strategy in Amazon Listings
4/27/202435 minutes, 3 seconds
Episode Artwork

#555 - Maximize Amazon Profits with the New Freedom Ticket

Join us on a journey through the world of e-commerce with the latest release of the revamped Freedom Ticket 4.0 course by Helium 10. This comprehensive training course, tailored for Amazon and Walmart sellers, brings forth the hard-earned wisdom of industry veterans. Listen in as Kevin King reveals the inspiration behind Freedom Ticket, designed to combat the misinformation spread by the infamous 'Lambo gurus' in the space. Our conversation unpacks the wealth of knowledge shared by our esteemed guests on subjects ranging from the nitty-gritty of Amazon patents to the essentials of e-commerce insurance, Amazon compliance, and the art of hiring and managing virtual assistants with Josh Hadley. In this episode, we also underscore the critical importance of intellectual property for entrepreneurs carving their niche in the e-commerce landscape. Our dialogue with guest experts such as Chris McCabe provides actionable insights into maintaining a healthy Amazon account amidst a sea of policy changes. Learn about the intricacies of insurance requirements from Ashlin Hadden, the strategic timing for patent applications from Rich Goldstein, and the importance of understanding the legal frameworks that underpin successful online selling. Our exploration continues with a practical guide to navigating the financial and regulatory aspects of running an Amazon business. Hear firsthand from experts about setting competitive employee salaries, the significance of meeting Amazon's insurance mandates, and the proactive steps for securing trademarks and brand registry. We also tackle the dos and don'ts of insert cards and highlight the valuable resource that is Google Patents for those seeking product inspiration. Every bit of advice is aimed at empowering sellers to maintain profitability while adhering to Amazon's evolving guidelines. So tune in for a masterclass in building and sustaining a thriving e-commerce business. In episode 555 of the Serious Sellers Podcast, Bradley, Kevin, Ashlin, Rich, Chris, and Josh discuss: 00:00 - The New Freedom Ticket 4.0 01:56 - False Promises of Lambo Gurus  12:04 - Amazon's Insurance Requirements for Sellers  16:47 - Importance of Patents for Amazon Sellers  21:12 - Importance of Trademarks for Amazon Sellers 21:31 - Staying Profitable on Amazon FBA 24:30 - Challenges With Abuse Suspensions and Reviews 29:01 - Hiring VAs and Managers for Amazon Businesses 35:18 - Determining VA Salaries Based on Skills 38:25 - Q&A With Our Guests ► Instagram: instagram.com/serioussellerspodcast ► Free Amazon Seller Chrome Extension: https://h10.me/extension ► Sign Up For Helium 10: https://h10.me/signup  (Use SSP10 To Save 10% For Life) ► Learn How To Sell on Amazon: https://h10.me/ft ► Watch The Podcasts On Youtube: youtube.com/@Helium10/videos
4/23/202441 minutes, 56 seconds
Episode Artwork

#554 - Walmart PPC Campaign Setup And Strategy Q&A

Let’s explore Walmart PPC advertising and its potential with the guidance of the incredible Destaney Wishon! In this riveting session, Carrie and Destaney take us on a comprehensive journey through the landscape of Walmart's pay-per-click platform. She contrasts Walmart's strategies with industry giants like Amazon and Google while emphasizing the unique advantages that come with Walmart's strong retail foundation. For those of you looking to break into or expand your understanding of Walmart's burgeoning online marketplace, Destaney's wisdom is an indispensable asset. Throughout our discussion, we tackle the subtle art of crafting effective advertising strategies for Walmart. We begin by casting a wide net with auto campaigns, gathering the crucial data that sharpen our approach for more targeted ad groups later on. Destaney highlights the significance of fine-tuning product listings to meet Walmart's specific guidelines, and how this can dramatically improve your search algorithm outcomes. We also peek into the untapped potential of video and sponsored brand ads on Walmart, and share expert tips on leveraging tools like Helium 10 for keyword research. The knowledge shared here is a goldmine for sellers aiming to capitalize on the low advertising costs within certain categories on Walmart's platform. As we round off this episode, we discuss the nuances of optimizing product placement and advertising strategies, drawing insights from the evolution of Walmart's auction system. Destaney provides us with actionable strategies for bid management and placement optimization that hinge on a deep understanding of data and market trends. We unpack the anticipated developments in Walmart's PPC landscape, including the possibility of introducing negative keywords in auto campaigns, and how tools like Adtomic can revolutionize sellers' PPC management. Join us for an episode packed with strategic insights that promise to elevate your advertising game on one of today's fastest-growing online retail platforms. (Time Stamps) -  In episode 554 of the Serious Sellers Podcast, Carrie and Destaney discuss: 00:00 - Walmart PPC Campaign Setup and Management 04:39 - Comparing Amazon and Walmart Advertising 07:25 - Optimizing Walmart PPC Campaigns for Beginners  15:58 - Understanding Walmart Auction System for Advertising 19:56 - Digital Shelf Advantageous for Sales 24:27 - Common Mistakes in Advertising on Walmart 25:15 - Optimizing Keywords and Advertising on Walmart 29:41 - Importance of Conversion Rate Optimization 30:39 - Walmart Wednesday PPC Insights ► Instagram: instagram.com/serioussellerspodcast ► Free Amazon Seller Chrome Extension: https://h10.me/extension ► Sign Up For Helium 10: https://h10.me/signup  (Use SSP10 To Save 10% For Life) ► Learn How To Sell on Amazon: https://h10.me/ft ► Watch The Podcasts On YouTube: youtube.com/@Helium10/videos Transcript   Carrie Miller: How should you set up your Walmart PPC campaigns, should you run automatic campaigns on Walmart, and how Adtomic can help you to better manage your Walmart PPC. This and so much more on this week's episode of Walmart Wednesday.   Bradley Sutton: How cool is that? Pretty cool, I think. We know that getting to page one on keyword search results is one of the most important goals that an Amazon seller might have. So, track your progress on the way to page one and even get historical keyword ranking information and even see sponsored ad rank placement with Keyword Tracker by Helium 10. For more information, go to h10.me/keywordtracker.   Carrie Miller: Hello everyone and welcome to another episode of this Serious Sellers podcast hosted by Helium 10. My name is Carrie and this is our Walmart Wednesday, where we talk about everything Walmart, and I'm very, very excited today because we have an amazing guest. I've actually been wanting her to come on for quite some time because I've had a lot of PPC questions and so I am so excited to have a PPC expert in here. So, we have Destaney Wishon, and so I'm going to bring her on. Hey, Destaney, how's it going?   Destaney: Hello, hello, it's going well. How are you?   Carrie Miller: Good. Thank you, I'm very, very excited, as I told you before, to have you on here. I know there's going to be a lot of questions that people are going to have, so I have a list of questions actually already that I know people have asked before and I'm going to start asking you those as well. But before we get started, just for anyone who isn't familiar with who you are, can you give a little kind of like intro background and who you are?    Destaney: Yeah, of course. So, Destaney Wishon, CEO and founder of what was formerly Better AMS and is now Better Media. We really got started in this space managing Amazon advertising for the last seven years, I think back in the old days when it was Vendor Central, Seller Central and you had like AMS and different ad types and things are a lot more simple, which is going to be probably a really fun part of today's conversation. And now we've rebranded, we're Better Media and we manage kind of all the core large retailers in the space.   Carrie Miller: The first thing is could you give us a little overview of what Walmart PPC advertising is and just how it differs from Amazon and Google, Because I know you're basically on all the platforms, so you're the best to answer this one.   Destaney: I'd like to start honestly like a little bit more zoomed out and kind of philosophical on the platforms. I think a lot of us, and probably a lot of listeners, are accustomed to Amazon running the show. Right, when you think of e-commerce, when you think of selling and brand building, you do typically think of Amazon, but a lot of people forget, like Walmart wrote that playbook they were kind of the first ones to write that playbook their largest retailer. So, everything that you see Amazon being successful when it comes to e-commerce, Walmart's already done in stores and physical retail, and I think that's really important to note because one that means from a cashflow perspective, they're in a really great position. It's not a new company trying to compete directly with Amazon. Amazon does have AWS and everything externally driving a lot of revenue for them, but from an e-commerce platform perspective, Walmart has every brand connection when it comes to the largest brands in the world, right, Johnson & Johnson, Procter & Gamble, Nestle have been selling into Walmart for 40 years. So, that's really important to consider because it's framing how they shaped their Walmart platform and it's framing how they're hiring as well. They're hiring a bunch of ex-Amazon talent. They're not having to completely reinvent the wheel. They're basically taking everything Amazon did that was really successful, and applying it to Walmart, but with that consideration that their audience is a little bit different. Right, the audience that's typically going into Walmart is very used to the products that have always been in a Walmart shelf. Everything that you've historically bought your deodorant, your toothpaste, everything that you've grown up with is in Walmart, and that's really how we're also seeing their e-commerce platform being positioned. It's giving favoritism to historical brands that are in stores. So that's something to call it, because it's kind of what we're up against. Right, in order for Amazon to become Amazon, they need to differentiate themselves from Walmart, and they did it by opening up an amazing third party platform and allowing anyone to sell anything, because they didn't need to sell the same products as Walmart. That wouldn't have been as competitive. They needed to sell unique and new products and really grow this third party seller platform. Walmart's taking a slightly different approach. Right, they're making sure that they're starting an e-commerce platform that still gives value to their products that are in stores. So, I want to start with that, because it's shaped kind of how they ran ads Across the board. Advertising is actually really similar I would say. Walmart's taking the exact same playbook. I mean there's small differences. Amazon allows for better negating and better control, especially on the bid management level. From like a targeting perspective. Amazon's doing a lot more moving into kind of DSP and better creatives and things like that. That being said, Walmart's really where we are at five years ago with Amazon, with slight complexities, and that we have more control over placements and device type, which I think is pretty complex, and I'll pause there and see if you have any thoughts on that.   Carrie Miller: No, yeah, I think it's. For me it's been easier to start advertising on Walmart because it is kind of it is like very basic, kind of from the ground up. So, if you really want to learn advertising from the ground up it's starting to just get your feet wet with Walmart advertising, I think it's a good idea because you're going to literally see it grow from the, from the ground up. You'll be able to see all the changes and how things, um, you know, work together. So, I think it's a really good thing to get in there if you haven't yet done PPC.   Destaney: A hundred percent. When we started on Amazon I think I've been in this space for seven years now possibly it just goes by really fast it was pretty much an auto campaign that you would just let run and it would do really really well for you and you didn't have placement modifiers and you didn't really have sponsor brands or sponsor display ads. It was great, it was easy. And then you took those auto campaigns, and we were able to apply them into manual campaigns with match types and Walmart's taking that same approach. I will say I think Walmart can be. It looks a little bit more complex in my opinion. Like everyone says, advertising console user interface is terrible. But sometimes I walk into Walmart and I'm like, oh my gosh, this is too much information. I need these graphs to go somewhere else. I'm really overwhelmed logging into Walmart sometimes.   Carrie Miller: Yeah, they do give a good amount of information for sure. I guess that leads into the next question. So why do you think that someone would want to start advertising with Adtomic? Because we have Adtomic for Walmart now with Helium 10 to help you with your advertising, as opposed to just using the Walmart platform Walmart Connect.   Destaney: Yeah, I think the biggest reason is bid management is, like 100%, one of the most important parts about Amazon or Walmart and you need a bid management solution for either platform. I actually think that it's more important when it comes to Walmart strictly because they do have the search in grid and the placement modifiers and that adds complexity from a bid model perspective. If you come in and try to arbitrarily adjust all of these placements without knowing or having data, it's going to be a big pain and then tracking the follow-up of that data is a pain. So fundamentally, from a bid management perspective, it needs to be done. You have to have a bid management solution if you're advertising on either. I think the secondary aspect and this is again can be applied to both is just having a better view of your business. Like I said, I log into Walmart Connect and that initial graph that is shown. It's not intuitive, but when you're able to look at something and take away an ad and build custom reporting based off your overall business needs and I think that's a big value add from an Adtomic perspective, it's way more beneficial.   Carrie Miller: Yeah, definitely I agree, because I've used both and I felt the same way that I just needed an easier way to view what was going on, and the Adtomic platform is much better for that. So, if you do want something that's easier to figure out where things are, what keywords are working or where to place things, then Adtomic is definitely the way to go for you. So, let's get into some beginner questions then. For some beginners, how would you recommend that someone set up their PPC when they first start out? Do you think that people should do their keyword research and do exact campaigns, auto campaigns? What do you think about with Walmart and how you should get started?   Destaney: I think something that we've seen is the Walmart customer searches a little bit different than the Amazon customer. So, rather than roll over the exact strategy that you're running externally, we've actually we made this mistake as an agency, we came into our first few brands, and we tried to apply the exact strategy we did on Amazon. We copied and pasted over; we did our like. Everyone who knows us knows we do like a really granular campaign setup right One campaign, one ad group, one ASIN, five to 10 keywords. We tried that approach on Walmart, and it did not work. Like it was just it was. It was too little; everything was spread too thin. And then we heard the feedback of like hey, start with an auto campaign with all of your products in it, and we did that. And once we started collecting data, then we could start breaking things out into broader groups, and that helped us a ton Across the board. I think auto campaigns are a little bit more powerful on Walmart, which actually makes sense in my opinion. That's how Amazon started as well. Auto campaigns were a lot more powerful because it was really easy to link the products in your campaign with the products that are associated with your SEO, and then your CPCs are quite a bit lower, so it's a lot less risky. So, I think that's the biggest feedback is don't try to spread yourself too thin, group things into bigger groups and then collect data on what placements are doing best for you and segment past that.   Carrie Miller: Yeah, and just a call out with Helium 10, you can get Walmart search volume. So, with Cerebro you can find keywords. So, one of the things I did was I just did a bunch of keyword research, and I did notice that it's not necessarily the same keywords that I would use on Amazon, and so they're kind of more general, but there are some specific ones. Maybe they only have like 17 search volumes I have actually made sales on those, so if they're very, very relevant, I would still use them, even if you're like, oh, the search volume isn't very good because people are finding you in other ways too. There's Google ads and there's a bunch of other things that Walmart's doing to get people to your page. But yeah, so I would definitely advertise on those. But one of the things that was hard for me when I did an auto campaign was the fact that you can't do any negative targeting, and so I was having the most random, weird keywords popping up that I don't know how it happened, and so that is something to call out too is to keep an eye on your auto campaigns because of that situation. I don't know if you have any ideas or thoughts about that.   Destaney: One thing we've seen, and this is something that is just from auditing, not as much from kind of full management on the Amazon advertising side is you're back in keywords and the keyword research you're doing on Walmart is also really different. Walmart has different brand guidelines per category that cause a lot of specificity and nuance changes, and that's important because auto campaigns work by scanning your listings, scanning all of your keyword research that you've done and associating with the keywords that are then in that auto campaign right. So, I don't know in your specific use case, but something we've seen across the board is they'll take their exact Amazon listing and again upload it to Walmart, not realizing that there's category nuances and it's a brand-new algorithm, it's a brand new platform. They're going to be tweaking things pretty consistently. So that's something to consider that you need to make sure you're understanding the algorithm on the platform you're playing in. You need to update your listing for a Walmart customer for the Walmart algorithm, and that's going to influence your campaigns and those auto campaigns as well.   Carrie Miller: Yeah, definitely Don't copy and paste. I always say that do not copy paste.   Destaney: One thing I want to hit on, because you had a great call out there is you may see something with really low search volume, and I would 100% still bid on those terms because it's the same bidding model for the most part. It's a pay per click bidding model. So, if you bid 10 cents and no one clicks, like you're not hurting anything. So, it's not really going to hurt your advertising to put all those low volume listings on there. What's going to happen if someone does search? If only 10 people search a month? You're going to be the only one bidding and it's going to be really cheap and it's going to be a crazy profitable sell for you. So those can drive a lot of incremental volume long term.   Carrie Miller: Yeah, 100%. And you can actually on Magnet, on Helium 10, I'll take a list of all those kind of lower search volume keywords and that you can actually put them into magnet and there's an analyze keywords and it'll show you the total search volume. So, when you add it up it actually gives you a lot more exposure on Walmart. So that is one sale here, one sale here, and it adds up. So that's the way you get from, you know, one sale a day to 10 to 20 sales a day. You know something that comes up every time.   Destaney: You know something that comes up every time. Like we have this conversation of like there's no volume on Walmart, or like I listed something and there's no volume and it is dependent on category, of course. But you got to think. You know, from a grocery perspective there's a ton of volume, like we've seen, very close to similar Amazon volume in certain categories, and that's also influenced by your advertising. If there's no volume, that also means your advertising costs are probably going to be pretty low. So sometimes it's worth it to play in those spaces because you're taking a long-term bet. Again, I keep comparing it to Amazon 7 years ago, but there were a lot of people who ran into the same thing then, but then they figured out the algorithm really well and they were able to scale that out long-term. So don't compare it to Amazon. That's not a fair comparison. They're very different platforms, especially category specific.   Carrie Miller: Yeah, definitely I. Yeah there's a lot of opportunity, even just like video ads and sponsored brand ads. I noticed on bigger keywords even there's no video ads there's. I mean, you wouldn't see that on Amazon at all and so there is some really good opportunity if you really think strategically like, hey, this whole keyword, you know maybe it's a little bit more competitive, but there's no one doing a video ad, I can just go in and dominate. So, you kind of have to like, really, you just think about, you know different ways you can beat the competition with each different keyword, and you can capitalize on those sales.   Destaney: And those are huge opportunities. So, we didn't mention this in the beginning, but I'm based out of Bentonville, Arkansas, so most of my friends either work for Walmart or agency side, and Walmart for the Nestle and the Procter and Gamble's and the General Mills has always been a big player online. So, it's funny if you bid on mascara or cereal, it's going to be competitive. But to Carrie's point, if you can get into those creative opportunities, you're always going to have a competitive advantage, because for General Mills to go create a video for every single SKU is incredibly costly and then they also need to send that video through marketing and legal. So, the time it takes them to create an asset specifically for a new platform and a new ad type is 6 to 9months by the time it's briefed, created and approved. So that's where we have a huge competitive advantage. Every time a new ad types rolled out, go hop in that platform or win some traffic and market share against the big name players in the space?   Carrie Miller: Yeah, definitely, that's a really good yeah, and I forgot to mention the Bentonville. So, do you have any insight, other insight thoughts about you? Know the fact that you're in Bentonville.   Destaney: It's funny, it's such a small community in Bentonville and when I started on Amazon, everyone would be like you can't tell people you work for Amazon around here, cause it's a competitive environment. But when Walmart started becoming a bigger player in the e-commerce space, I was like from day one, like this is going to be a huge opportunity, like Walmart is. I don't want to say they're too big to fail, but Walmart has the audience. Right, everyone knows Walmart. They're the largest retailer, which means they have to have a lot of customers. They have the money, they've been in business for an incredibly long time and they're attracting the talent from Amazon. Right, it reminds me of, like software world Everyone's going to go to the big fun players in the space. So, I don't think they have to reinvent the wheel and I think they're going to make a big difference.   Carrie Miller: I agree. I agree. There's a lot of good opportunities there, so get on Walmart. If you're not, can you talk a little bit about how the auction works on Walmart and what factors determine the placement? And all that information for everyone in the audience?   Destaney: Historically the auction was quite a bit different, and it was a major red flag. It used to be an auction model where just the highest bid won. Yeah, so if you bid $12 and the second bid was $1, you weren't paying a dollar and one cent, you were paying $12. So, that made things really difficult from a bid management perspective, from a brand perspective. Walmart finally transitioned that over. It acts pretty similar to Amazon and I love this question when it comes up into the groups of like suggested bids. Why are suggested bids so high? And one thing to consider is auction models and a PPC is just buying real estate. You want to win the top placements, the highest traffic placements, which is typically the top of the page. You have to bid the highest amount. Where Walmart gets a little bit more complex, and I like to the placements on Walmart. You know, searching Grid, Buy Box, mobile Desktop. I like to relate to kind of placement modifiers on Amazon. We always start with like a clean slate, a foundation of just a bid, like let's win this placement, and then, once we start collecting data, we can start breaking out an increase in a placement or a higher bid elsewhere, and I recommend everyone do the same, like it doesn't matter if you see a read an article that says you know mobile conversion rates are much higher than desktop. I wouldn't go and make that bet. Instead, like we prefer, if you're solely focused on profitability, start with low bids and a low auction and what's going to happen is you may not get impressions in traffic and that's fine, it's still, it's not hurting you, but increase incrementally until you collect data and you can figure out your breakeven ROAS. On the flip side, if you have money to spend, start high and collect data really quick and like. A big thing I'm a huge fan of is just to always make database decisions. They give you so much data you can see your placement performance and all of your keyword performance. So, wait till you collect data and then make bid decisions based off that.   Carrie Miller: Yeah, that's really good. It's really good that you called out how clunky it was before I took my ads before the relevancy model and before the second price auction. It was actually really hard because you actually couldn't even advertise higher than you were organically ranked, so I was just stuck in these far-out places. Yeah, then literally that next month when they changed the relevancy, I went from $200 to about $800 for this product. Then I started going up and up and up and went to about $12,000 a month for just the one product because they changed these small little things in the advertising and so that's a huge call out because people who were on back then were probably frustrated. So, I want to kind of let everyone know that it's changed and it's better.   Destaney: It is changed, and I think that's also a really important call out, just like organic rank. So, algorithms, again, are driven off like two things, especially like a shopping algorithm. One they need data, right, so they need a ton of inputs in order to say, hey, yes, this product should be indexed for Chapstick. They need 300 data points saying that customers convert for Chapstick right, so volume clicks and conversions matter. I think the second big thing is every platform wants to drive sales, so we were talking about this before hopping on, but in order to improve your organic rank on any platform, you need to sell more units, and how do you sell more units? That's up to you to figure out. A lot of people say, oh, that's Walmart's job. I listed my product, now they need to sell it. It doesn't quite work that way. It's an algorithm, right, yeah? So, either you advertise on Walmart, and you start driving more units, which improves your organic rank, and as your organic rank improves, you get more visibility, which sells more units for you, or you figure out how to sell units off platform, one way or another. At the end of the day, though, like one of the biggest ranking juice factors is always going to be advertising on that platform because it's so much more precise. Like we've seen conversion rates for sponsored ads and they're incredible. So, yeah, highly recommend that.   Carrie Miller: Yeah, it's just so funny that people have a different mentality when they come on Walmart like almost, I don't know, I don't want to say entitled, but it's like they should do this for us, and they should do that. It's like amazon doesn't do that for you, amazon makes, makes you pay, yeah, so why not?   Destaney: It's kind of funny I don't know if maybe it's similar of like they're thinking about a retail store like you get your PO and then Walmart puts your product on the shelf, but at the end, and then Walmart brings in that foot traffic, I guess. But at the end of the day, you're competing against so many other products on a digital shelf yeah, competing against so many other products on a digital shelf. Yeah, a retail shelf, you can only squeeze 10 products, 10 toothpaste brands, like in that section. But a digital shelf is so much different, and you do have the opportunity to influence where you're showing up on that shelf in a really simple way, and I think that's advantageous.   Carrie Miller: Well, even going back to retail, even when you get into retail you are supposed to move it. So, I remember talking or not talking, but like listening to Sarah Blakely with Spanx and she got her stuff into Neiman Marcus, and she was having her friends go buy it. She went into the stores for Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom, and was selling these products herself.   Destaney: It was like they thought she was like an in-store rep, because she was just sitting there like trying to sell her products. I remember that exactly.   Carrie Miller: So. It's like you know that ownership of. I want to get these products out there. My product is amazing, I want it in front of people. And so, another person I talked to about retail, as they said, historically people were always using billboards. They were using commercial advertising if they got into Walmart. So, once they get into Walmart, they are actually, you know, responsible to get to move the product as well, but it's just a different way of doing it, and if they don't move it on the shelf in the physical stores, Walmart would take them off. So, it's, it's the same thing. So always have that mentality of how can I, what can I do to move my product on this platform. I think that's why I always think about Sarah Blakely, because you know she was not too, too good for going in there and literally working at the store all day, every day, so I love that.   Destaney: And to that point, like one, she had that scrappy mentality, which was incredible. But this is a conversation that comes up. If you cannot afford to advertise on the platform, you know, become a connector, become an influencer, start hopping on lives, start doing TikTok's and gaining that traction for yourself and then sending that traffic to your said platform. But to that point, I also think that's where we're spoiled by sponsored ad performance. Right, you've been on a keyword, someone clicks on it, and you see the results. But back in the day, it's back in the day like what? 15 years ago, yeah, you were in a national media campaign, or you paid for a billboard, and you said here's $50,000 for this billboard and all you could do is see if you saw a lift in overall sales. It was a lift test. That's what marketing was judged by. Now we have the ability to pinpoint the age, income, geographic time of click and we're spoiled by it.   Carrie Miller: It's pretty amazing. Yeah, I actually to your point about you know, if you get scrappy. I've actually seen some people you know that use Helium 10 and they're like I don't, I don't have that great of a budget, but they chose products kind of in their hobby niche. They'll go live and do demos or on YouTube. They have YouTube channels where they show how to use their product and they sell it with the links. You know they can link it to one more and amazon, and so they they're doing that and that's how they've gotten a ton of traction. So, definitely think outside the box if you're not able to, you know, invest in PPC.   Destaney: Sean Reily from DUDE Wipes is a ton of incredible content on how they started, because he, he, they had to be so scrappy that they would just like buy these really crazy like billboard placements or bid on these certain placements that they knew would get tv attention. They were going to baseball games and holding up signs like with their products names and then when the baseball aired, they would be in the background holding their signs. And it's that exact same thing of just how you get in front of people.   Carrie Miller: Yeah, it's so amazing. Yeah, so that's a good call out there. Okay, so we do have some questions here from the audience and of course Bradley has asked the first one. He said let's see, does Walmart broad phrase and exact perform similar to Amazon or does it have weird things like Amazon where broad can go super wide and exact sometimes performs?   Destaney: Performs like phrase even?  I would say they're similar. I think Amazon sponsored brands broad match is a little bit of an outsider and just the overall conversation with sponsored brands broad match we've seen go really wide lately. I have pulled all of our agency data to see if we've seen a change in conversion rate on sponsored products broad match and we haven't. So, I'm kind of like I don't want to make a huge comparison there, but I would say they're very similar.   Carrie Miller: What are some common mistakes that you see new beginners doing on, you know, with advertising or just getting on Walmart in general?   Destaney: I would say poor keyword research. We dove into this one a little bit. But to go even deeper on that, I think some people overthink keyword research and at the end of the day, it's like what would you type in to find this product? Yep, start with that. Like make a commonsense list of the top 10 keywords that you would type in, not the ones that are algorithmically showing the highest revenue, not the ones that a tool is showing you. Start with common sense keywords I'm buying mascara or Chapstick or lunchbox, right and then use the tools to expand on those, because it's twofold here. Your commonsense keywords are almost always going to be the most expensive because if you're thinking about bidding on them, so is everyone else right. But where you have a lot of opportunities, you take all of the Helium 10, long tail terms that you didn't think about right. So, if you use something again like a Chapstick, everyone's going to bid on Chapstick. But if I find this long tail of, like peppermint Chapstick for chapped lips, children, non-toxic, it's going to be such low search volume. But you have to add up hundreds of those, 50 of those, like Carrie said, and that's where you're going to get your profitability. It's still, even though it's early days, from a platform. There's a lot of big-name players that are driving up ad costs. I would say where that's where it's a little bit different from amazon, right like all of your big-name players are in stores on Walmart, they're also advertising on dot com. So, you still have to be really strategic around that keyword research you. You have to figure out, you know what terms are going to drive the most sales for you but maybe not be profitable. What terms can you get a really long tail on? That's going to drive additional volume but take a little bit more work to invest in. Not having a bid management solution is 100% number two. A lot of people don't understand bid management. I don't expect people to. It took me 3 years and probably over $30 million of spin before it became intuitive. I had to touch so many accounts in order to start figuring out the correlation of bid management, and there's a lot of simple videos on just bid formulas. But if you're not that person, if you're not going to understand algorithmically and mathematically how to build a bid solution, not a lot of us are, you need to use a tool? Your bid is the number one indicator of what your ROAS or ACOS is going to be.   Carrie Miller: Yeah, so I guess that brings you back to Adtomic. Are there any other kind of parts of Adtomic you think that are helpful for sellers?   Destaney: Custom reporting, I think, is a big one. To that point, when you're starting out and starting to build a midsize business, your focus almost changes. In the very beginning you're in everything because it's your baby. It has to be perfect. As you start scaling you realize you're spread too thin. So, you start picking up what you're best at and I think that's where a tool like Atomic really comes into play. It's 80-20. It's you know. Let's build out either custom reports so I can focus on what I need best, whether it's my tacos, whether it's my margin, whether it's my conversion rate, or even getting into, like some of your other tools, market tracker, things like that. That's where it gets really valuable. In my opinion, it's bringing back time for you as an entrepreneur. It's not going to be as perfect. Every business owner thinks they're perfect, right. You have to start letting go some of those resources because in order to have a successful brand nowadays, you have to be good at product development. You have to optimize per platform. You probably need a social presence. You need to handle forecasting and inventory. You need to handle finances in your P&L. It's insane how much goes into. It's amazing that we have the opportunity to do it from our iPhone, but it's also insane how complex it is. So, you have to start bringing in tools that maybe aren't as good, but they allow you to scale your own time.   Carrie Miller: I know I get this question a lot. Maybe somebody's advertising already and they feel like they've done a lot of things to kind of optimize. What kinds of things do you recommend for people to take their sales to the next level like? Maybe they feel like they're stagnant. Are there any kind of go-to strategies you have for Walmart where people can kind of say, hey, if I implement this, I could probably see a lift, or what should I? Which they look at that maybe people are ignoring that they should be looking at.   Destaney: I want to get into like all the fun small things of like ad type expansion and all of that, but I want to call out just conversion rate optimization first, because it's super easy to blame a lack of sales or bad performance on the thing that you least understand, which is typically advertising. It's typically PPC and just coming from the agency side, I mean we've heard it all in that regard and I think a really important call out is if someone clicked on your ad, if you look at your campaign and you see clicks, that ad did its job Because think about it as a customer, as I personally shop on Walmart, I don't go around just clicking on things that I'm not interested in buying. So, if the customer clicked, that means they were interested in it, but they landed on your listing and they decided not to buy, and your job is to decide why they didn't purchase. Is your listing not good enough? Is it not the color or the flavor that you're looking for? So, conversion rate optimization is always the thing that we say to start with. If you have a little bit of extra profit in your account and you need to invest in something, start with conversion rate optimization, because it's going to make your PPC 20 times better. And then beyond that, I would say another big thing to call out that can really influence top line sales growth is making sure you're managing your PPC not just for advertising but to grow your overall organic rank. So, creating campaigns specifically focused on improving your organic positioning on the page.   Carrie Miller: Very good. All right, and we do have a good PPC question here. Ben Tiffany said any word on when Walmart will start allowing us to create negative search terms on our auto campaigns?   Destaney: I would probably give it another quarter or end of year. Honestly, I think it's too blaring of a discrepancy to not roll out, so I'm assuming it's on the roadmap for pretty soon.   Carrie Miller: Yeah, I have heard it's on the roadmap, so I thought it would already be out. So maybe they're just taking a little more time to make sure that it works well. So yes. Yeah, that's probably what's going on here, but I think we're pretty much out of time. But thank you so much for joining us today on this Walmart Wednesday and we really appreciate your insights for PPC. We haven't really done a whole lot on PPC, so hopefully we'll be able to get you back on here at some point and do some more Walmart PPC stuff. But thanks again for joining us and to everyone else, thank you for your questions and thank you for joining us live and we will see you all again next month on Walmart Wednesday. Bye, everyone.    Destaney: Awesome. Thank you, Carrie. Bye guys.
4/20/202431 minutes, 17 seconds
Episode Artwork

#553 - 2024 Amazon Product Research Masterclass

Ever felt like you were just one product away from striking it rich on Amazon? That's the tantalizing possibility we explore as we dive into the art of Amazon product research using Helium 10's Blackbox tool. This episode is your compass to navigate the e-commerce landscape, offering a masterclass on seizing those elusive product opportunities that could propel your financial success to new heights. We're not just talking theory here; Our host, Bradley Sutton is pulling back the curtain on Black Box's massive database, its different keyword and niche exploration tools, and the game-changing impact of Amazon’s Brand Analytics data mixed into it. Picture yourself uncovering hidden gems among Amazon's top sellers, skillfully leveraging competitor data like a seasoned pro. That's exactly what we're tackling in this episode, where he breaks down how to analyze a rival's portfolio of products to inspire your own potential Amazon product innovations. We're diving into the deep end of keyword searches, emphasizing those potent long-tail phrases with great search volume. With Bradley’s guidance, you'll be equipped to expand your product line strategically, positioning yourself to tap into Amazon's competitive marketplace and watch those sales figures soar. As the journey wraps up, we don't just leave you with a map—we hand you the spyglass to zoom in on niche markets calling out for exploration. Discover how title density can catapult you to the top of Amazon's search results or how a strategic Amazon PPC campaign can breathe new life into your selling strategies. Whether you're a newcomer to the Amazon selling scene or an old hand looking to sharpen your edge, this episode is packed with wisdom that could see your profits skyrocket thanks to Helium 10's arsenal of tools. So buckle up and get ready to transform your approach to Amazon product research!   In episode 553 of the Serious Sellers Podcast, Bradley discusses: 01:25 - Amazon Product Research With Helium 10's BlackBox Tool 02:08 - Introduction and Overview To Black Box by Helium 10 05:06 - How To Find Potential Products with Opportunity To Sell 12:41 - How To Research a Brand’s or Seller’s Top Products 14:59 - How To Find Product Opportunity by Searching for Keywords 21:40 - How To Find Product Opportunity by Looking at the Top 10 Search Results 24:46 - How To Find Product Opportunity Using Amazon Brand Analytics 29:09 - How To Search And Filter Amazon Brand Analytics Keywords 31:48 - How To Find Competitors For Any Amazon Product 35:04 - How To Hyper-Filter Amazon Search Results Without Being on Amazon 37:44 - How To View the History of Items Frequently Bought Together With Other Amazon Products 41:55 - Helium 10 Seller Connect Forum ► Instagram: instagram.com/serioussellerspodcast ► Free Amazon Seller Chrome Extension: https://h10.me/extension ► Sign Up For Helium 10: https://h10.me/signup  (Use SSP10 To Save 10% For Life) ► Learn How To Sell on Amazon: https://h10.me/ft ► Watch The Podcasts On Youtube: youtube.com/@Helium10/videos
4/16/202443 minutes, 7 seconds
Episode Artwork

#552 - Amazon Dayparting, PPC for Voice Search, and New Adtomic Bid Optimization Rules

Ever find yourself navigating Amazon PPC, only to feel like you're missing the secret map? Fear not, because PPC expert Vince Montero joins us to illuminate the path with the game-changing Adtomic tool. With Vince's adept guidance, we dissect the art of bid adjustments, underscore the value of setting realistic ACoS targets, and reveal how to concoct bid rules tailored to your campaign's aspirations. If you're entangled in the web of managing branded and ranking campaigns, Vince's insights on their unique dynamics are your lifeline to clarity and control. Tackling the strategic battlefield of PPC bid adjustment, the episode lays bare the tightrope walk between automated precision and the essential human touch. We share pearls of wisdom on the necessity to periodically scrutinize bid changes with your own two eyes, guaranteeing that your decisions are fueled by solid spend thresholds and sales data. By integrating different expenditure tiers and impressions, we arm you with the tactics to sidestep the quicksand of inflating bids on lagging keywords. Plus, we shed light on how to ensure harmony within your bid rules, avoiding the snare of conflicting criteria. Amazon search is blowing towards the era of voice search, let’s explore its burgeoning influence on Amazon PPC strategies. As shoppers cozy up to AI companions and Alexa for their purchasing needs, we discuss the strategic inclusion of conversational, long-tail keywords. Moreover, we tackle the high seas of ACoS rates during product launches, steering you through the initial tempest into calmer waters where optimization can begin. Whether you're charting the advanced realms of day-parting for bid adjustments or seeking to elevate your listing's visibility, this episode is the compass you've been seeking in the vast ocean of Amazon PPC. In episode 552 of the Serious Sellers Podcast, Carrie and Vince discuss: 01:45 - Amazon PPC Optimization With Adtomic 07:16 - Optimizing ACoS Percentage Gradually 12:15 - Strategic Bid Adjustment for Amazon PPC 13:46 - Optimizing PPC Ad Spend Strategy 16:34 - Keyword Performance Optimization Rules 19:16 - Impact Of Voice Search In Amazon PPC 22:48 - Utilizing FAQs for Amazon Listings 28:19 - Amazon PPC Strategy and Optimization 29:58 - Amazon Sales Attribution for Advertised ASINs 33:09 - Voice Search Optimization Tools Discussion  ► Instagram: instagram.com/serioussellerspodcast ► Free Amazon Seller Chrome Extension: https://h10.me/extension ► Sign Up For Helium 10: https://h10.me/signup  (Use SSP10 To Save 10% For Life) ► Learn How To Sell on Amazon: https://h10.me/ft ► Watch The Podcasts On YouTube: youtube.com/@Helium10/videos
4/13/202435 minutes, 28 seconds
Episode Artwork

#551 - Strategies to Boost Amazon Sales and Master Profitability

Join us for a compelling conversation with Amazon expert Tomer Rabinovich as we uncover the secrets to increased profitability and mastery of the Amazon marketplace. Tomer brings invaluable insights on how to thrive amidst Amazon's ever-changing fees and storage strategies. Listen in as we discuss the benefits of remote business management and how sellers can adapt to maintain a resilient online presence. Venture into the world of product development and discover strategies that are revolutionizing product launches. In this episode, we share the story of a product that's exceeding expectations with its innovative approach to packaging and marketing, highlighting the importance of giftable elements and catering to the mobile workforce. We also peel back the curtain on the evolution of launch tactics, from leveraging PPC to harnessing the power of Google ads and social media platforms. Hear firsthand from our community about what's currently making waves in the marketplace. Wrapping up the conversation, we discuss the potency of various launch and Amazon advertising strategies, such as utilizing the Amazon Vine program and the importance of smart PPC campaign management. We navigate through the complexities of new coupon rules and their implications for product ranking, and share strategies for increasing profitability through supplier negotiations and the judicious use of funding. Additionally, we touch on the strategy of offering quantity discounts to incentivize multi-unit purchases. So, come along and gain valuable insights that could propel your Amazon business to new heights. In episode 551 of the Serious Sellers Podcast, Bradley and Tomer discuss: 00:00 - Amazon Seller Strategies and Experiences 03:28 - Amazon Sellers Discuss Marketplace Changes 08:11 - Navigating Amazon Changes and Branding 11:01 - Product Development and Launch Strategies 14:37 - Amazon Listing Workarounds for Vine 17:20 - Importance of Social Media in Branding 20:43 - Amazon Advertising and Helium 10 Strategies 21:18 - Optimal Pricing Strategy for Vine Reviews  27:49 - Enhancing Amazon Product Research Tools 29:25 - Strategies for Increasing Profitability and Automation 32:10 - Negotiating Bulk Purchase Discounts 36:55 - Maturing Industry and Setting End Goals 39:29 - Quantity Discounts for Multiple Units ► Instagram: instagram.com/serioussellerspodcast ► Free Amazon Seller Chrome Extension: https://h10.me/extension ► Sign Up For Helium 10: https://h10.me/signup  (Use SSP10 To Save 10% For Life) ► Learn How To Sell on Amazon: https://h10.me/ft ► Watch The Podcasts On Youtube: youtube.com/@Helium10/videos
4/9/202440 minutes, 13 seconds
Episode Artwork

#550 - Are Amazon Launches Permanently Changed After This Update?

Listen in as Bradley unpacks the latest twists for Amazon product launch strategies, which may have sent sellers back to the drawing board. Bradley’s tale with a bat bath mat launch illustrates the high stakes of this new game, and a PPC-centered approach has risen to the forefront. I'll guide you through the intricacies of setting introductory prices, navigating the minefield of buy box retention, and leveraging tools like Helium 10 to keep a finger on the pulse of your sales trajectory. This is an essential discussion for any seller aiming to crack the code of maintaining those coveted page one rankings in Amazon's ever-evolving marketplace. As we continue, you'll discover the fine art of pricing strategy and the critical role it plays in the aftermath of a product launch. Sharing his personal experience, Bradley reveals how calculated PPC maneuvers, without the reliance on top of search modifiers, propelled this product to the top, only for an unforeseen buy box loss to threaten everything. We'll also discuss the Maldives honeymoon method, a savvy technique to capitalize on Amazon's honeymoon period, and offer advice on how to regain your Buy Box and rankings with swift pricing adjustments. Whether you're a seasoned seller or just starting out, this conversation is packed with insights on optimizing your Amazon journey. In episode 550 of the Serious Sellers Podcast, Bradley discusses: 00:00 - Amazon Product Launch Strategy Changes 00:57 - Amazon Product Launch Strategy Insights 07:29 - Amazon Buy Box Pricing Strategy 09:27 - Amazon Honeymoon Method Success  21:00 - Optimizing Amazon Product Launch Strategies 27:42 - Safe Price for Buy Box Competition  29:54 - Tracking Amazon Variant Sales With Cerebro  Transcript   Bradley Sutton: There's something new that Amazon has been testing that could completely change how we do product launches, and I'm going to tell you exactly how I got to page one in my recent product launch but then lost it instantly because of this change. How cool is that? Pretty cool, I think.   Bradley Sutton: Hello everybody, and welcome to another episode of the Series Sellers Podcast by Helium 10. I'm your host, Bradley Sutton, and this is the show that is our monthly Ask Me Anything, where we go and answer any and all of your Helium 10 questions, or even some general Amazon questions as well, and we usually go into a certain topic at first. Now, this time I didn't mention that I was going to go into a certain topic, but I want to show you guys something that could be happening when we're talking about Amazon product launches. That I think is very important.   Bradley Sutton: I wanted to show you what happened with my recent product launch testing that I did, and this is going to be interesting because it could impact how we launch products, just as a kind of like a recap. What kind of launch strategy do I use and have I been showing other people? Well, it's mainly has to do with PPC. All right, so I'm like hey, you have a product that has no reviews at the beginning. Well, you need to convince people that they're going to buy your product if they see it at the top of search in PPC, and so my strategy has always been, you know, since Amazon turned off the search find, buy that people want, you know you should try and do or two-step URLs is I would create a listing and then I decide at what price point do people or are people going to buy my product even though it has no reviews, or only one or two reviews where they're just like you know what? I have never heard of this brand. I see other products on this page. I have a couple hundred reviews, but dang, at this price point, I've got to go ahead and buy this other product, even though I've never heard of it.   Bradley Sutton: And so for some bath mats that I was selling for me, that price point was $9.99. All right, my list price is going to be $29 and my target price. I was like, hey, I want to start selling this around $24, if I can, right. And then so I was like you know what? At $9.95, I think, or $9.87, whatever I picked, I think that people are going to be like, well, this is a killer deal, I'm going to go ahead and buy it. And so what I've always taught is all right, well, you can either do a big coupon to get to that $9.95 price, like maybe a 50% off coupon if the price was like $19, right. Or the other thing is, do a sale price, because if I were to just change the regular price of the product and then try to raise it up, you guys know what would happen, right, the buy box would disappear after a certain point because Amazon would think that you're price gouging. So the way to get around that is using sale prices only, and the other thing that I was doing was trying to get the strike through pricing and in the past it would work like 80% of the time, where as long as I got one order at the regular price, the list price, then I did a sale price. I would usually like, again, 80% of the time I would get a, a strikethrough price on that list price. Bradley Sutton: So the first thing that I did for this launch, for this bat shaped bath mat say that five times fast was I created it at $9.97, like I said, and I did a sale price. All right, let me actually show you the listing. You guys can see this yourself. So if you type in bat bath mat, you'll probably see it. All right. So originally I put the price the first day I got some sales or I got one sale at the $29.97. You guys see right here, $29.97. You could see right down here. I actually had a sale on February 12th, all right, and then immediately I made a sale price of $9.97 and started getting sales. All right, let me let's actually look at the orders. By the way, maybe you guys didn't know you could do that. You could do it in Helium 10 here, where you look at your orders day by day and I also did the same thing for I tried some Tesla scenes for coffin shelves. So you see, February 22nd, I still have the price at $12.97. So I was like going up in price, but I want to find the first day that I actually had orders here. Here we go. You can see, February 19th. I was selling this for $9.97. Exactly like I said, but I know I got one at a higher price. Let's see if Helium 10 is going to show it for me. There's still $9.97 there. Hold on, what date are we on here? Let's see still 1697 for the coffin shelf. Now I'm at February 14th $9.97. Where was it? February? There it is. Look at that right there. Boom. Thank you, Helium 10 for showing me this right here. February. What is this date? This right here, February, what is this date? Uh, February 14th. I actually got sales at $29.97, but I did not get that strike through pricing. Now, immediately after I got that, look at that same day, I lowered the price as a sale price for $9.97. And, as you can see here, I was selling products left and right.   Bradley Sutton: I did a PPC campaign. All right, I made a special launch campaign inside of Atomic. Where it was, it was specifically to rank for my main keywords and I was getting the orders. I'll show you the actual campaign that I made. Like I started from day one with this special launch campaign where I was targeting top of search, not using the bid algorithm, not using the top of search modifier, but I was just targeting in general the top of search, and let me show you what happened on the keyword. So, like, everything was a success. Like you know, I've launched hundreds of products and it's always I always have success, but it was always the same business as usual. Uh, let me show you the keyword rank so you guys could see how it was going. Let me show you like bat bath mat was one of the main ones, and let's look at my rank history here. I'm going to explain what happened here, but look at this, all right. So right there, remember I launched a product like February 12th, February 13th, I had those orders. See where I was ranking for bat bath mat right away because of my the Title Density on this keyword is low. Without even doing anything. Before I even got that first order, look, I was at position 126, 128, right. And then what I did was I started my PPC campaign on that day. Let me show you where that's at. What I did was I started my PPC campaign on that day.   Bradley Sutton: All right. So I started my PPC. Remember? I got that first order on February 4th. Well, look at that. Why did I get that order? Look at this. On February 14th, I should say look at that. My position was number one, all right. So I was first. I was and this is why I don't use top of search modifiers. I could see from Helium 10 that every single hour almost, I was at the top of search on February 14th and 15th, all right. So now let me go into my Adtomic and see if I can find my original campaign that I did. So here's the exact campaign that I made in Adtomic and I don't think I'm running almost any of these anymore. I had a $40 a day. I had a $40 a day budget. And then the keywords that I was targeting are right here Bat bath mat, gothic bathroom rug, bat rug, bat bathroom rug. You see I just had these are like my main keywords and I did a high bid because I was trying to be top of search. And I didn't have to guess if I was going to be at top of search because I could see that in keyword tracker and even here in Adtomic under the search terms, it's showing me my keyword ranks right here. See, it's showing me my organic rank and my sponsored rank right here in Adtomic. And so, again, everything was business as usual. I started getting sales. Let's go back to my sales here. These are all organic. Organic in the sense that you know, I wasn't paying people to order my product or anything. These were just people seeing it in sponsored results. Look at this February 15th, I got one order, two orders. Let's keep going here. February 16th, I had two, three more or four organic orders, still at $9.97 price point. The February 17th, another two, three orders. So my PPC campaigns were working. How fast was I able to rank because of these one, two, three, four orders? Well, look here Bat bath mat in Helium 10 keyword tracker. Remember I was at position 125. We'll take a look here Within just two days, within one day, the very first day I got orders, I already jumped up to page one.   Bradley Sutton: That's the beauty about the Maldives Honeymoon method, guys, and the honeymoon period on Amazon. You can just do ridiculous things, especially with lower search volume keywords like this. Page one, position 23, from day one of my first sale and then towards the next day, February 15th, page one, position 11, I jumped up after a few more orders. Look at this. February 16th, two days after I got my first order, I'm at page one, position four. And then shortly thereafter I am at the very top of the search right here, page one, position two, three, four, consistently. All right. So everything was great. I'm like, boom, this is so good. And you look at my orders, they started picking up and so, because they were picking up, I started raising the price. Let me see if I can see what day I raised the price I still had on the 19th I was still at $10. Let's take a look here. You guys can see. Still on the 20th I was at $10. When did I raise the price here? And then I started raising, I think to $10.97, first of all and that was on February, let's see or $12.97. I jumped up at $12.97, all right, on February. When was this? February 22nd, and I was still selling really well, I still didn't have any reviews.   Bradley Sutton: So I wanted to keep that price low. But I started bringing that price gradually up and you can see that I did that actually here on the BSR graph, here on Helium 10. You can see that on oh there, it is right there. February 22nd I raised the price to $12.97. On February 28th I raised it to $14.97 because I'm like, hey, sales are still piling in, I don't need to keep that really low price point because I already got to page one for my main keywords. Alright, almost all my main keywords okay. Um, $14.97. I went to $15.97, $17.97. Uh, I did on March. What is this March 1st? But now all of a sudden take a look here, what happened? Where my BSR goes way down, all right here. Uh, at this point my BSR and sales went to almost zero. And look what happened in Keyword Tracker guys, all right, bat bath map, my main keyword, all of my main keywords on March 5th I lost the buy box. That's basically what happened, guys. All right, I lost the buy box. Now it dropped me to position 32. Look at this. It went from position 1 to 32 consistently for almost two weeks. I was doing it. Do you see here, guys, every single one of my keywords dropped to position 32. This is what we call the page 32 or position 32 glitch. But it's not really a glitch. This is like something Amazon has programmed in, where I lost the buy box. Now, why did I lose the buy box? This never happened before.   Bradley Sutton: Basically, it seems like I mean, at least it could be a test. But I literally did this on four different product launches all at the same time, and the same exact thing happened, where Amazon, even though I was using a sale price, is now kind of like considering the sale price, the regular price, and then so if you raise the price too much, you are not going to get the buy box back. All right, because Amazon thinks that you are price gouging. And I was like this is just flabbergasting me. What is going on? So I even went to azrank.com and I was like, hey, I need to have 10 orders, buy 10 orders at this $24.97 price, which is my regular price to send Amazon signals. I was just doing a test. I'm not trying to break Amazon terms of service or anything. It wasn't like search, find, buy or anything like that. But I said AZRank, please have 10 people buy it. And the cool thing about using AZRank is they give you a whole bunch of like customer information on your product. You know, like they say, hey, how's the packaging and how's the search experience and what are the other products on the page that they're clicking on? So it's not just a matter of trying to get quote, unquote, fake orders or anything like that. No, there's a reason. You get customer intelligence from AZRank. But for this particular reason or for this particular case, all I wanted to do was ask, or was try and see, what do I have to do to get the buy box back? And here's the thing 10 orders at 24, it wasn't enough.   Bradley Sutton: So it seems like Amazon has this rolling history now of price where they're going to suppress your buy box if they feel that you're price gouging. It's not like there's another listing somewhere else on Amazon or on another website that was at a certain price. No, so what I've been doing, little by little, I had to find out what price point I could get the buy box back, and that price point was at first, $17.97. All right, so I had to get the. I got the buy box back right here at $17.97. And then I'm like, okay, let me get some orders at $17.97. I did, and then I was like, all right, things are going good, let's go to $18.27. All right, so now I've been raising the price little by little, kind of like if you had to raise your regular price, and now I'm all the way at $20.97. I don't know why Amazon price history is saying is saying $27.97, but $20 and 97 cents, what is it, or no, $20.07.? And I still have, as you can see here, buy box. Even Amazon is throwing a coupon on here. Now I'm still getting sales, but now this means that I've been losing money for a little bit more time because, remember, my target price is $24.97. So what is my next thing that I am going to test here? Well, basically, if this is going to be permanent, if Amazon no longer allows you to do a sale price for too much, and then you're going to get buy box problems, and also, remember, amazon says you cannot run coupons anymore unless you have sales history. So if that's the case, you no longer are going to be able to do these crazy huge, deep discounts for too long to get people to buy your product. So what would be the strategy if this is the new normal? You guys let me know in the comments on the side have anybody been using this strategy in the last month and seen the same thing? Or you were able to discount 60% on a sales price, raise the price all the way up three weeks later and you'd be okay.   Bradley Sutton: But anyways, what my strategy is going to have to be now is I really have to know how many units I want to sell at that price. I send in let's just say it's 60 units. I send in 60 units to a certain SKU and then I make another. I said SKU, I meant ASIN. I need to make another variation of the product with different images, even though it's the same product, and then make it like somehow a variation and then send in maybe 200 or 300 products there and then those 60 units or 100 units at that low price. I do all I can do to get the ranking up and then I keep that other listing closed and then, once I run out of inventory and that's good. I've got my ranking. I've got some reviews from Vine which, by the way, when you do Vine, it's actually good to do Vine when you have the $9 price or the $10 price or $12 price, because then sellers or buyers from the Vine it doesn't count too much to their monthly quota or whatever plus, it just psychologically will tell them even though they're not paying a high or they're not paying anything. They'll be like oh wow, this is such an amazing product for this deal, so you want to do your vine during that time too. But anyways, you have to, you know, have 50 or a hundred units there and then when that unit, when that, turns off, you turn on your other product or your other ASIN, your other variation, which is basically the same product, but it's a separate ASIN and that ASIN you never had at the lower price. Theoretically speaking, again, I haven't tested this out because this is all stuff I've been doing the last two weeks here. Theoretically speaking, now you shouldn't have buy box issues and I can go ahead and have that product be at $24.97, which is what I would do here. I've got like six almost five-star reviews. This would be the time where I'd be like I want to try and sell this at $24.97. But right now, if I sell it at $24.97, it is going to take. You know what guys, let's do this together.   Bradley Sutton: I'm actually going to go ahead and see if I can put, if I can go ahead and um, put the price at 20, even $23.97. And let's see if I'm still getting that uh, still getting that block. So we're doing this together live guys. I am not making this stuff up. It's a live Amazon account. Let's go ahead and edit this listing and let's see in 15 minutes if I lost the buy box or not. All right, so I got my price $20.07. Let's go to, let's just go to $21.97. Maybe it's enough. Maybe I'll still be able to keep buy box at $21.97. So we will go ahead and do save and finish. Remind me, guys in a few minutes to refresh the Amazon page and let's see if I was able to keep the uh, to keep the buy box. But anyways, that's the issue of what's going on with launches right now. Really interesting stuff, in my opinion, how Amazon is changing stuff. But now this is your time for the rest of the show. So go ahead and give me some questions.   Bradley Sutton: Karina says how many days did it take to get the first reviews? Yeah, all those reviews are organic. Like that wasn't any of the Vine reviews I forgot I'm dumb. I forgot to do the Vine thing, like in my first couple of days. So like it took me a week to start the Vine. So those I got my first review like a week and a half in 100% organic from one of my first orders and I did not do follow-up emails for the very first ones. I didn't want to send follow-up email when I had such a big discount price. That's just me. Some people do it, but I'm just trying to be safe.   Bradley Sutton: Jennifer says what do you think is the best way to get reviews for new products? Absolutely Vine. Vine is definitely a good way. And then, of course, just having a good product right, have a good product and make sure that you know you're kind of over-delivering with quality and have a good unboxing experience and that's just going to give you a good chance to do, to do uh, to get a good review. And then, of course, use Follow-up, use Helium 10 Follow-up to do the request review and that'll increase your rate of review, usually at least five to 10%. Karina says I just got a bunch of two and three star reviews lately from the Vine community. Yeah, you gotta be careful If people don't like your product. I mean, if you got two and three stars from the Vine community, you might get two and three stars from regular people too. So that's why it's good to have a low price when they claim the product from Vine, because then it's going to give you a better chance, I should say, to have a good review. If you have a low price at the beginning, let's see if Amazon has updated the price yet.   Bradley Sutton: Oh, that was fast. Look at that, guys. I guess. Look at that. See, look at that. Buy box is gone. That's crazy right. Buy box is gone. That's crazy right. Buy box is gone. Now. I think this one is too fast, but it takes like a day for the search results. I think let's go ahead and look at the search results. If it already put me to position 32, probably take like a few hours. Yeah, I&#x