Guest post by Thomas Pruchinski of Landing Cube | October 4, 2018 | Estimated read time 6 min
Organic search rankings have long been the primary focus for Amazon sellers. For good reason, as Amazon offers a massive base of shoppers geared up and ready to buy.
While it still holds true today, the space is becoming more crowded. It’s fast becoming unsustainable to rely only on search results for your sales. Savvy sellers realize the value of driving traffic from outside Amazon. This helps you grow an email list, get reviews, and build a brand that lasts.
Competition is fierce on Amazon. Learn how to drive traffic to increase your sales.
- Sponsored (PPC) listings
- Cheap sellers trying to undercut the competition
- Sellers employing grey or black hat methods to rank high
- Smart sellers trying to optimize their own listings for the same keywords.
That doesn’t even take into account the constant changes in Amazon’s A9 ranking algorithm. You could be ranking high one day, but all it takes is a small change from Amazon, and that might disappear.
Driving traffic from other sources allows you a way to bypass the competition and get a step ahead. You enable potential customers to view your products in front of your competitors’. You can showcase your product all on its own – not relying on the coin flip that a shopper will choose your listing over one of the two next to it.
External Traffic Lets You Grow Your Brand
This is possibly the most crucial reason to utilize external traffic sources, and it’s becoming more important by the day.
As Amazon becomes flooded with sellers, you need a way to distinguish yourself. You can do that by building a strong, sustainable, recognizable brand. That way you have more chance of standing up to Amazon’s drastic anti-manipulation measures, such as their consistent culling of dodgy reviews that is ongoing as we speak.
You have a far better chance at capturing sales when you fall outside of the first few search results if you have a name customers recognize and trust. Not only that, you don’t have to rely on undercutting the competition to get sales. With a strong brand behind you, you can charge higher prices, and return higher profit margins.
Look at Onnit – a known brand, with a footprint on Amazon. In a search for “Nootropic Supplement”, their famous Alpha Brain product currently comes in at 10th. Yet they’re charging a higher price per volume than all the competitors. They can do this because it’s a name that shoppers will stop scrolling and notice. The others are almost entirely reliant on the first few spots on the search results for their Amazon sales.
Can you build a brand exclusively on Amazon? It’s possible but extremely tough. Let’s look at why external traffic makes it so much easier to build your brand.
You’re not contending with Amazon’s brand
That’s right, the other listings under your keywords are not your only competitors. Though they help you to get traffic, when it comes to branding, Amazon comes first. They’ll give you a certain freedom to personalize your listing, but only to a degree. It’s still an Amazon page, and they put a lot of guidelines on what you can and can’t say.
If you’re advertising off-Amazon, you have so much more freedom. Customize what you say, how you say it, your visuals, everything. You’ve essentially got a blank canvas to create an image of your business that resonates with your customers.
You can build an email list with external traffic
This is something a lot of Amazon sellers struggle with. Amazon won’t release your customers’ emails to you (out of fear you will try to divert them away from Amazon). Yet email marketing is incredibly effective, delivering an average ROI of $40 per $1 spent! Not to mention, an email list is a valuable asset if you ever want to sell your business.
So Amazon won’t help you. And their seller policies forbid any attempts to engage in non-fulfillment related contact with customers after they hit Amazon. So the only way to build your email list is through external traffic.
The idea is that, once a customer reaches Amazon, they’re an Amazon customer – not your customer. But if you make first contact with the customer somewhere else online, they’re fair game. You can capture their email and market directly to them, without running the risk of getting booted off Amazon.
Grow Your Email list AND Brand Loyalty with Promotional Campaigns
Capturing emails within Amazon’s TOS is one thing, but actually encouraging people to sign up to your email list is another. These days, everyone is super wary of being sold to. They’re probably not going to give up their email unless they’re getting something in return.
Running focused promotions is a great way to encourage email signups while driving sales at the same time. The idea is to get in front of potential customers on the web (in channels such as social media, blogs, or paid ads), with an enticing offer. Interested people are directed to a landing page, which prompts them to enter their email to take part in the promotion.
What you’re offering is up to you, but it’s best to provide something that will increase the chance of them buying from you on Amazon. It could be a free piece of engaging or educational content related to your product, which helps them get more value out of your product.
Alternatively, you can offer discount promo codes in return for their email sign up. Everyone likes discounts – it’s a very tangible reward that feels good for the customer. An Amazon-specific landing page tool like LandingCube automates most of the process. Giving you an efficient way to collect emails and drive sales at the same time.
The positive feeling customers get from a discount, or free content will help put your brand in a place where customers will remember it, and stay loyal to you long-term.
Building Amazon Sales Funnels
This strategy is essentially building Amazon sales funnels. By driving external traffic to a landing page to collect emails, before directing visitors to Amazon, you can lead potential customers towards becoming paying customers and repeat customers, because you collected an email. The landing page also allows for retargeting.
The overall funnel looks like this:
How Your Brand and Email List Will Get You More Reviews
The other hot question Amazon sellers ask – how can I get more reviews? By following the earlier steps, you’ll be in an excellent position to see the reviews come in too.
Your email list allows you to follow up with your customers and encourage them to leave reviews. A good email follow-up sequence makes your customer feel valued, reminds them of the value your product provides and asks for sincere feedback you can use to improve your product. If you do it right, the customer won’t feel like they’re being hounded to leave a review.
A recognized brand makes it even easier to get reviews. A lot of people won’t think to leave a review about your product. More will get turned off by aggressive sellers immediately pursuing them for reviews. But if they’re loyal to your brand, they’ll be much more willing to help you out with a review.
As an Amazon seller, everything comes back to sales. Reviews, an email list, and brand recognition are super important. Why? Because they all contribute to boosting sales at the end of the day.
External traffic helps you build and grow a brand that lasts, fill up your email list and earn more reviews. Knock your external advertising campaigns out of the park, and your sales are sure to follow.
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