Even pre-COVID-19 Amazon’s increasing importance for shoppers presented unrivalled growth opportunities for brands. 56% of shoppers started their journey on Amazon, while 64% checked prices on Amazon while in-store. Those are startling statistics. And with 62% of shoppers saying they were excited about the prospect of being able to order all their goods through a single retailer such as Amazon, it’s clear the platform was redefining the shopper path to purchase, long before it took on the central role it has now.
Shoppers were already using Amazon more for more day to day purchases and more fundamentally 75% of users relied on Amazon to discover new products and brands. It was already well on its way to replacing Google to become consumers first port of call when it comes to searching online, reflecting its evolution beyond its original role as a purely transactional platform.
The influence doesn’t stop there. Subscription automatically reduces brand engagement - 33% of Amazon Prime shoppers already use automatic product replenishment – seriously impacting a competitor brand’s ability to drive reconsideration. By the time we start to return to more 'normal' shopping habits in Q4, being able to combat this effectively will never have been more important for brands.
Mountains to climb
The opportunities for brands on Amazon are vast, but so are the associated challenges. The most common pitfalls, especially for FMCG companies who are relatively new to or under skilled on the platform, can be split into two categories - brands not conveyed effectively to the shopper and product pages not deployed correctly.
Brand development on Amazon is often overlooked by companies who view the platform as merely a functional portal for sales. This is a dangerously outdated point of view. Prior to purchasing, consumers are increasingly using Amazon to compare product specifications, prices and reviews, all without leaving the website.
This 360 reliance on the platform makes coherent brand messaging and seamless shopper experience vital. Whilst Amazon is well aware of this, offering excellent tools for brands to develop their presence within the platform, these are of little use without the shopper know-how and expertise to put them to use effectively.
Now that shoppers are completing their full path purchase within the Amazon platform, it is essential to convey different information to consumers at each stage of their journey. This is why effective product page deployment is key - providing the shopper with the right message, at the right touchpoint at the right time.
Solutions to get you there
Accurate benchmarking is the first vital step in evaluating a brand’s presence on Amazon, allowing analysis of what’s working and what isn’t. Our audit process makes it possible to get a clear sense of where a brand needs to make improvements - often small steps that once addressed can make a huge impact.
The next stage is content optimisation, followed by content creation – focusing on enhancing the content on product pages and the brand story for optimum engagement. Only once these steps have been taken can the focus shift to campaign management.
Whilst for some brands this may feel like a non-essential undertaking, and that their presence on the platform is simply enough, the potential return on investment with optimisation makes it more than a worthwhile consideration. As the power of the platform grows, and particularly now it has become central to yet more consumer’s lives, it’s not an undertaking that any brand can afford to ignore.
Freddie Smith, account manager, Initials