One of the first concepts that you must understand about successfully selling Amazon products is “winning the buy box”. As with everything else that it does, Amazon maintains a unique approach in the way that it is designed. Instead of having multiple listings that describe the same product, their marketplace lets sellers compete to gain control of one unique product listing. This means that when someone buys an Amazon product, the seller who “owns” the buy box at that particular time, earns the sale. Unless you are creating new products, or creatively bundling existing products, this is the process you will need to go through to sell items.
What is the Buy Box?
The buy box is a conspicuous box that contains an “add to cart” button, along with other pertinent product details.
Depending on whether you are a buyer or a seller, you will uphold different views on the buy box:
For buyers – this box represents an end to the search for the product that they are looking for. From here, making a purchase can be done in just a few clicks.
For sellers – failing to win the “buy box” will most likely mean missing out on a sale, so winning this crucial stage of the process becomes paramount.
How to Win It
Fortunately, there are a number of ways to both assess the strength and number of sellers competing for a particular product in the Amazon marketplace. Additionally, there are ways to significantly increase your chances of winning the sale.
To find out whether other vendors, including Amazon itself, is selling your product, take a look at the product details on the product page you are interested in:
This product happens to be sold directly by Amazon as well as by 19 other vendors. Uncover the entire list of sellers by clicking on “19 new”. These sellers are all competing for the one “buy box” that is associated with this product, unless the buyer specifically selects an alternative vendor. At any given time, Amazon selects one unique vendor to represent the “buy box” by using a number of different factors.
Here is a closer look at some of the most important factors to winning the “buy box” that most sellers are either not aware of, or do not abide by:
Shipping price – Offering a lower shipping price than your competitors is an easy way to attract the attention of buyers, as it factors into the final sales price. It is important to note that nowadays, most buyers expect free shipping.
Price – Lower overall prices is one of the main reasons why consumers shop with Amazon in the first place.
Pro Merchant Account – Amazon gives preference to sellers who have these accounts over the free option.
Categories – Choosing a category that has multiple sellers competing for the same product is not ideal.
Featured Merchants – While becoming a featured merchant is not entirely under your control, it does involve activities which are credited by the Amazon algorithm, such as maintaining a low order defect rate, keeping your customers happy with efficient customer service, speed of delivery, and your time as a seller. Amazon also favors products which are considered “Fulfillment by Amazon”, meaning that shipping of those products can be withheld until all items of an order can ship at the same time. Performing all of these activities will result in more opportunities to represent the “buy box” for your products.
Now that you have an understanding of what the “buy box” entails, here are a few specific ways you can win this area:
. Correctly categorize your products by putting them in relevant categories that have less competition.
. Use a distributor that uses tracking numbers, and that you can consistently rely on.
. Have a streamlined system for prompt and helpful customer service. Marking products as “shipped” as early as possible will help speed up the fulfillment process. Following the Amazon guidelines of keeping the customer first will help you provide excellent service, as well as encourage better buyer reviews.
. Bundle products that are often bought together in order to create new product listings. This is one way to reduce competition and increase your chances of making a sale.
. Use software and tools to give yourself an edge when it comes to the important factors that lead to more sales.