How Amazon merchants can learn from Prime Day and prep for the holidays
It’s no secret that Amazon Prime Day 2017 set new records for both Amazon and its merchants. In fact, sales soared over 60% compared with last year’s Prime Day. Granted, all that exposure is great, but when merchants forfeit such significant portions of their margins to Amazon in fees alone, what other ROI can they glean from selling on the world’s largest marketplace on its biggest day of the year? At the very least, merchants can learn from their Prime Day data and adjust their strategies to fully maximize sales during the upcoming holiday season. Here’s a 5-step plan for priming those profits:
1. Get a sense for overall profit:
- After deducting marketplace fees, shipping costs, and promotions, calculate the profits (or loss) of your top-selling items
2. Learn what the optimums were:
- For each SKU you sold, plot out all your final selling prices and units sold at each price — the results should look like a cloudy curve.
- Now, take those sales prices and remove all the costs associated with each product (cost of the product, shipping, marketplace fees, etc.) and you’ll get a new curve that shows profit per item and units sold.
- Multiply the units by the price for each of the curves and you’ll be able to find price points that drove maximum revenue (first curve) and maximum profit (second curve). These should be your book-ends for future pricing of the SKU.
3. Fix issues before the holidays:
- Check in with your logistics team or provider to figure out where things broke. Were there late shipments? Out of stock items? False alarms because data wasn’t updated between systems?
- Understand what caused those problems. Maybe a disorganized warehouse, orders got lost, technical difficulties, system delays, under-staffing.
- Find a solution and a backup before the holiday rush.
4. Be better prepared for the Holidays:
- Take results from steps 1 and 2 and use them to update your projections for the 2017 holiday season.
5. Once you’ve optimized the third step, update again and enjoy feeling prepared for a great holiday season!
Originally published in eCommerceBytes. Learn how Webgility’s Unify platform can simplify your retail operations.
Come learn about the Virutal ERP for e-Commerce
Hey eBay sellers, we’re a bronze sponsor of the 2017 eBay Open conference, which, as you know, will be held July 25-28 in Las Vegas. Whether you’re a current customer, prospective customer, partner, or a superfan, please stop by and see us in person. To make it official and schedule a product demo with sales, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
On the left of the hall near the Innovation kiosk, we’ll be demonstrating how to build a simple, smart, and scalable online business with the essential e-commerce tech stack. For a little fun, we’re inviting all attendees to stop by and enter our “Guess the LEGOs” game for a chance to win an Amazon Echo or, the grand prize, six free months of the Virtual ERP for e-Commerce. While supplies last, entrants will be awarded with their own bag of LEGOs, and a winner will be chosen daily. Continue reading
Our new integration eliminates data entry between Walmart Marketplace and QuickBooks
We’re thrilled to announce a Beta program of a new integration with Walmart Marketplace that can empower you to radically simplify operations by managing your Walmart Marketplace sales orders, QuickBooks accounting, multi-channel inventory, and shipping all from one place. This important integration comes as Walmart last week reported 63% in e-commerce sales and 69% growth in gross merchandise volume, mostly from Walmart.com. Continue reading
It’s been a busy time at Webgility as we’ve upgraded both Unify cloud and desktop offerings. To enable businesses to be sustainable, profitable, and scalable, we’ve strengthened our products with these additional features.
Unify Enterprise Edition
- Users can now change how packing slips are displayed and the notifications sent to customers after shipping.
- We’ve increased the granularity of sales tax mapping down to individual counties.
- Users can now customize the dropship request to vendors and change the automation setting in other connected shipping tools.
- New integration! Walmart Marketplace has been added as a new sales channel (currently in Beta). If you’re interested in joining our Walmart Marketplace Beta program, click here.
- Xero (you asked for it…)
- ShipStation and ShippingEasy now sync to Xero.
- eBay and Amazon fees now sync to Xero.
- SkuVault and Skubana users can now sync vendor purchase orders in Xero.
- Wondering which item generates the biggest profit? We got this. You can now see the per-unit profit on an item as well as the total gross profit for that item over time.
- Users can now see a graph showing the average profit on orders over the last 30 days for each sales channel. Profits recalculate daily, allowing users to identify early trends and understand the impact of discounts, advertising, and special offers.
- You’ll never oversell again. You now have access to a new chart that shows how many days until an item will be out of stock.
- SKU and product name can now be toggled as the Unique ID in any of the graphs or reports that utilize inventory information.
- Go beyond general profit margins and understand through one of our unique analytics, which of your products generates the largest portion of your company’s overall profit. Investigate how this changes over time.
In addition to these notable upgrades, we’ve also given some attention to several usability features our customers have requested, such as consolidated syncing of bundled items, a preference screen, and a preview option for QuickBooks Online, to name just a few. Thank you for your feedback and please keep it coming. Your input improves the product.
Understanding how it works
Also known as ‘sales rank,’ Amazon ranks products on an hourly basis according to how much time has elapsed since one was last sold. So if an item has just been sold, it’ll have a pretty high ranking, as opposed to something that’s been languishing for a whole hour. Here’s an example showing the best sellers rank on Amazon for Joe Wick’s book, Lean in 15, which is currently ranked at number 12.
What does it really mean?
What many buyers get confused about is what exactly the sales rank signifies. While it does speak to, and we quote Amazon here, “how well a product is selling overall, it doesn’t always indicate how well an item is selling among other similar items.” It’s a rather isolated measurement, as opposed to being able to compare it within and across categories. Also, the short time-frame during which the best sellers rank is calculated means that it’s an extremely small sample pool. Say you’ve got a very small sales rank number (i.e. as close to 1 as possible) — to assume it’s a hot seller may be incorrect, as the buyer, could simply be looking at something that’s been sold just a few seconds or minutes ago. Continue reading