The 5 Most Common Amazon Seller Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

Adam ZlotnikAmazon Marketing, Product MarketingLeave a Comment

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Whether it’s your first time selling on Amazon or you’re looking to chase your success with a new product, don’t let haste get the better of you. Launching a new FBA product takes considerable financial and time investment. So you’ll be kicking yourself hard if you fail due to rookie Amazon seller mistakes.

Even if you’re already a seasoned seller, it often pays to humble yourself. Just because you’ve nailed it in the past, does not mean you can afford to skip the essentials this time. The last thing you want is to get stuck with a bunch of stock for a product selling at a snail’s pace. The opportunity cost is too high.

Today we’re revisiting the 5 most common newbie Amazon seller mistakes, plus we’ll show you a bunch of neat tools we’re using to overcome them with ease!

1. Not Researching the Market Thoroughly

It can get awfully exciting looking at the estimated sales and revenues for products in new niches. When you finally find a product that’s killing it, you might feel the urge to rush in and launch before others notice it too. But often, it pays to hold your horses a little while first.

Monitor Your Opportunity Carefully

Using the Jungle Scout Pro extension or Web App you can analyze entire niches and individual products with ease.

  • Monitor the niche opportunity score – if the market demand is high and the competition is low, you may have found a candidate for your next product
  • Add main competitors to the product tracker – see exactly how current sellers are performing in this market and imagine how you could fit in there too

It’s advisable to carefully monitor these factors over at least a week before pouncing. The market landscape can change very quickly, and the last thing you want to do is jump straight into a dog pile! If the competition seems to be creeping up in this short period of time, you might consider looking elsewhere.

Beating Your Competition

You should know your main competitors like the back of your hand before you source a new product. Who they are, exactly what they are selling, why buyers love them and what they don’t like. You can’t afford to enter a new market with a generic copy of what others are selling. Or worse yet, an inferior product.

The key to success with private label selling is to identify weaknesses in existing products and improve upon them to strongly attract customers. So your product should have unique selling points and address buyer needs in a new way.

Always Keep Your Ears to the Ground

Even after you’ve launched, you still need to carefully observe the market during this early stage. Until your product is well established, it could still become more trouble than it’s worth if the market changes drastically.

If you notice your sales starting to slow and (strong) competition beginning to arise, you MAY consider cutting your losses before ordering more inventory to pursue them. If there are more favored opportunities on your radar now’s your chance to go for them instead!

Why not pursue them with money in your pocket rather than trying to revive your product in an increasingly difficult niche? Using Jungle Scout’s Web App, you can easily keep an eye on your niche and all competitors.

2. Not Having an Effective Launch Strategy In Place

Gone are the days where merely shipping 1000 units to Amazon was enough to get sales traction. With the rise of competition between sellers, a proper launch strategy is now essential to get noticed above others.

When your product first goes live, you’ll find yourself at the back of the pack so to speak. You need to give your product some momentum to show Amazon your product is relevant and worthy of being put in front of buyers.

But how can you do that when your way back on page 18 for your top keywords?

Create Jump Send Promotions to Boost Product Sales

The easiest way to drive cold, hard sales to your new products is by setting up promotions and dishing out coupons. Jump Send assists sellers to do this quickly and safely, while offering the biggest buyer marketplace to reach customers.

Many FBA sellers are getting great results with 50-90% off coupons. Generally, higher discounts can attract more buyers, which is ideal for more competitive niches.

But you may well be able to run promotions at cost or even small profits. Either way, it’s well worth investing a portion of your stock in promotions to drive sales. Jump Send members can leverage the following:

  • 100,000+ purchase-ready shoppers – hand pick who gets coupons or automatically distribute them and track purchases
  • Clear analytics dashboard– view your campaign performance and keep track of coupon use
  • Unlimited follow-up emails – make the most of every sale by following up and asking for reviews

Jump Send starts you with 3 products and unlimited emails for only $29/month.

Sellers regularly jump from page 10+ to the 1st page for their chosen keywords using promotions like this. Product Launch Websites are completely safe and highly beneficial for FBA sellers.

In fact, Jump Send was seen to be one of the most effective promotional strategies in Jungle Scout’s Million Dollar Case Study.

3. Not Fully Optimizing Product Listings

It’s no big secret that a product listing holds enormous weight when it comes to selling ability on Amazon. Every section counts, including title, description, images and even those lesser known back-end keywords. If you weren’t already aware, here are the biggest ways a product listing influences performance:

  • Visibility – poorly optimized listings will not strongly signal relevancy to Amazon for your product keywords. This results in reduced exposure, sessions and opportunities to make sales.
  • Conversions – poorly optimized listings will suffer from lower conversion rates as fewer visitors turn into buyers.

As you can imagine, this will greatly influence revenue and selling potential. So here’s what you need to do:

Get Your Amazon SEO Dialed In

If you want your product to show up favorably in search results for relevant buyer search terms, your SEO really needs to be on point.

First, you’ll need to perform keyword research to identify the highest traffic, most relevant keywords for your products.

Secondly, you’ll need to work them into your product listing using the latest Amazon SEO best practices.

Start Optimizing With Split Testing

It’s impossible to get everything right based on your own judgment alone. Only the market itself can show you the truth. That’s why you should optimize your product listing by split test variants against each other, and then using your own data to make informed decisions.

Often, the most profitable changes only become apparent after seeing the results yourself. Splitly is an awesome tool you’ll want in your arsenal for confidently optimizing listings. It takes away all the guesswork and makes split testing incredibly easy. The key features include:

  • The ability to test all product listing features – including title, images, description, product features and keywords.
  • Automated pricing optimization – Profit Peak uses artificial intelligence to find and test your pricing on auto-pilot for a hands-off approach to maximizing product profitability.
  • Algorithm-powered split testing – leverages machine learning to pinpoint profitable changes.
  • Keyword tracking – keeps a record of keyword ranking so you can measure improvements.

Splitly’s starter package is only $47 per month and gives you 3 concurrent tests and 100 tracked keywords. Considering the fact you could potentially double your revenue (or more) using this tool, it’s a steal!

4. Not Keeping Your Financials in Check

No one gets excited about bookkeeping. For many, it’s a complete nightmare. But if your serious about building a long-term business, keeping on top of your financials is essential.

First, how else can you accurately track profitability? You could be hemorrhaging money without even realizing it (especially with Amazon PPC). Not knowing your exact profit is simply not a good business practice.

Second, there are legal issues. When it comes to paying taxes, your financials need to be straight or you could face serious consequences. If you later decide to sell your business, potential buyers will need to see all your financials before handing over the money.

Don’t wait for that panicking feeling when you wish you had kept better track of your records. Get organized now and never worry about it again.

Ditch the Spread Sheets, Start Using Fetcher

Fetcher is a simple-to-use accounting software specifically tailored for Amazon sellers. It plugs directly into Seller Central and generates beautifully clear reports. It takes literally 15 minutes to set up and will save you hours of pouring through excel sheets yourself.

Fetcher pulls everything in, processes the data and outputs easily understandable reports. This includes:

  • All expenses on a per ASIN basis – including the cost of goods, Amazon Pay Per Click, Amazon FBA and sales fees.
  • Refunds and promotional tracking – these soon add up and you don’t want to misjudge them.
  • Clear profit and loss statements – the exact performance of your business on any scale.

Fetcher’s Startup Plan is only $19/month. Getting easily digestible business statements any other way you would require at least $300/month for a professional a bookkeeper.

5. Not Following Up With Customers Building Reviews

Not fully capitalizing on the sales you make is a big Amazon seller mistake. You could be attracting more reviews and potential repeat customers by following up and reaching out.

Reviews are still the backbone of social proof that helps us attract shoppers and drive sales. Having more raving reviews on your product than the next seller will always play to your advantage.

Now it’s become increasingly hard to attract organic Amazon reviews without breaking the rules, it’s time to try new approaches. At Jump Send, we’ve helped thousands of sellers build systems to maximize their review gathering potential. Check out some ideas in previous blog posts we’ve published:

Don’t Kick Yourself Later By Making These Amazon Seller Mistakes

Even seasoned sellers can stumble due to these mistakes, especially if they let their confidence get the best of them. So no matter which level you’re at, address each of these areas to ensure your FBA business can flourish as you projected.

All these tools we’ve shared today can solve each of these issues and save time with little investment. Not to mention, can you imagine the potential profits being left on the table by not leveraging them?

And if you’ve made other Amazon seller mistakes you’re not too embarrassed to admit, we’d love to hear from you in the comments below.

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