3 Tips for Ecommerce Sellers to Grow Sales on Amazon Prime Day

July 12th, 2019 Comments off

3 Tips for Growing Your Sales on Amazon Prime Day

Amazon Prime Day – it’s like Black Friday in the middle of summer, minus the turkey leftovers and holiday deadlines. This year as in the past, Amazon will offer its Prime members “a 2-day parade of epic deals” on Monday, July 15 and Tuesday, July 16. And if 2018’s numbers are any indication – more than 100 million Prime Day products sold and an estimated 3.6 billion in sales – this year’s Prime Day Event promises to be another record-setter.

However, nowadays the Prime Day shopping frenzy isn’t limited to Amazon. Large, well-known competitors such was Walmart, Target, eBay and many other retailers have jumped on the Prime bandwagon by figuring out how to reap the benefits of this Amazon-invented buying holiday on their own sites. For example:

  • Starting July 15, Target will hold a major 2-day sale, with deals to include 40% off furniture and 30% off appliances.
  • Walmart has yet to divulge details about its upcoming deals, but its midsummer promotion runs July 14 through 17, so it bookends Prime Day. Walmart also teased a few major online-only deals on Dyson vacuums and HD laptops that will go live on July 14.
  • eBay’s July 15 “Crash Sale” was created in response to a past Amazon.com Prime Day site crash. Like Walmart, eBay extended its sale period with events starting as early as July 1. On July 15, eBay will offer doorbuster savings on top brands, but will also launch new deals every day through July 22.

But how exactly does Amazon’s Prime Day event translate to success for a regular ecommerce seller? Research shows that Amazon’s Prime Day creates a “halo effect” – a phenomenon where shoppers looking for deals on Amazon instinctively seek out great deals on other sites, too. This can absolutely include smaller e-commerce sellers … like you.

Here are 3 tips to help you attract shoppers to your site this Prime Day.

Tip #1: Create an Amazon Coupon for your Amazon listing. Since Prime Day is all about price discounts and great deals, sellers can bring extra attention to their product listings on Amazon.com with a great coupon offer.  Products with coupons include a highlighted “coupon” label showcasing the discount being offered.  This is a great method to ride the coat tails of Prime Day sales without having to participate in the Lightning Deals process, including the $500 Amazon fee to participate.   Important!  Coupons must be submitted at least 48 hours before the offer becomes active, so make sure you submit the coupon by Saturday, July 13 for coupons to be live by Tuesday, July 16.

Tip #2: Create a flash sale promo on your site. Offering a product at a deep discount appeals to shoppers’ competitive streak, because everyone loves catching a good deal! For your own flash sale, consider an item selling quickly on other sites. Or take advantage of your page analytics to see which products in your cart routinely get viewed but not purchased. And be sure to alert your customers via email and social media shortly before the sale starts.

Tip #3: Optimize your Google Shopping campaign on Prime Day. If shoppers cannot find the deals they want on Amazon.com, they’ll turn to Google to find them on other sites.  Make sure your website appears at the top of the listings in Google with an optimized Shopping campaign.  First, using the “view search queries” tool in the Keywords tab, scrub out keywords that have not generated a sale in the last 30 days. This action will allow you to spend more money on keywords that are producing revenue.  Then review your conversion stats: increase bids for those keywords that are producing sales and lower bids on those that aren’t.

The Bottom Line – Amazon Prime Day Can Increase Sales for All Sites

Make the power of Prime Day work for you! Pay attention to what the major retailers are doing to tap into Amazon’s event, then optimize your own online store with sales promotions and discounts on top selling products to take full advantage of Amazon Prime Day fever.

How To Start Planning for the Holiday Season — In July

July 9th, 2019 Comments off

Christmas in July Blog PostThe weather outside may not be frightful…but successful e-commerce is so delightful! And just imagine how delightful it will feel just a few months from now when you fully appreciate your advance preparation for the 2019 holiday season. Remember, many retailers find November and December alone makes up as much as 30 percent of their yearly revenue. It definitely pays to be proactive in planning, even if you’re presently thinking more about sandcastles than Santa.

Here are 5 reasons why it pays to get into the holiday selling spirit well in advance.

1. Your customers are already thinking ahead. Google Trends indicates searches for “Christmas Gift Ideas” begin in August and only go up from there. With a plethora of holidays stacking up once October hits – including Yom Kippur, Halloween and Thanksgiving – almost everyone gets busier and more frazzled as the year draws to a close.

2. Non-calendar holidays are key. You know about Black Friday (Nov. 29) and Cyber Monday (Dec. 2), but these aren’t the only retail-friendly dates to mark on your calendar. They may not appear on everyone’s to-do list, but as an e-commerce seller, you absolutely need to be prepared for Green Monday (Dec. 9), a shopping holiday similar to Cyber Monday that tends to fall on the second Monday of December, and Free Shipping Day (Dec. 14), a one-day event when merchants are encouraged to offer this perk with guaranteed pre-Christmas delivery. Create a holiday calendar so you know exactly which ecommerce promotions you’ll be participating in so you can be sure to plan accordingly as well as alert your customers.

3. Expanded holiday payment options and generous return policies appeal to shoppers. Many retailers extend additional payment options, discounts and loosened return windows during the busy holiday season. By taking the time to consider these factors now, you can make informed decisions once the busiest shopping season begins.

4. Intuitive mobile platforms attract shoppers on the go. Studies have shown that mobile shoppers make quicker purchasing decisions than desktop users. If you haven’t already done so, optimize your mobile site now to make it more responsive to mobile browsing.

5. Connecting with customers can benefit your bottom line. Whether it’s a curated Pinterest board of your holiday gift ideas, enthusiastic Tweets about products or personal emails to customers, your social media and personalized marketing can have a big impact on customers, especially during the stressful shopping season. Start your campaigns now by reaching out via abandoned-cart and after-sales emails or posting “Only 130 shopping days left!” teasers on social media. The more you connect with customers, the more you can be sure to offer them the products they want.

The bottom line
It’s often said that the days are long, but the years are short — so don’t let the holiday shopping season sneak up on you. Take steps now to consider your options and plan ahead for the busiest shopping season of the year. That way, when fall rolls around, you’ll be prepared to celebrate a successful season.

Reusing Boxes – 5 Tips To Help You Stay Out of Trouble

May 21st, 2019 Comments off

Reusing boxes can make you feel good.  You’re saving the environment!  You’re reducing waste!   You’re saving money!  But are you making a mistake?  Well, that depends.

Cover Unfamiliar Markings

First of all, it is extremely important to cover all markings and symbols with which you’re not familiar.  When I first started selling on eBay, I sent a pair of shoes in a box marked “ORM-D.”  Packages bearing this mark contain hazardous materials. The package didn’t get far.  It was held hostage in a city 45 minutes away.  The Postal Service wanted me to pick it up.  I drove to the agreed upon location—an out-of-the-way USPS warehouse. I was shipping shoes, I tell you. Shoes! What a nightmare.

Hide or Remove Old Address Labels

In addition, be sure to cover or remove any old address labels.  As an eBay newbie, I had several boxes returned to me because the USPS only saw the original address label which showed the destination address as being my own!

Avoid Alcohol Containers

Sending items via the USPS in boxes that once contained alcohol can also be a problem.  I would avoid using them.  According to the USPS website, beer, wine, and liquor may not be sent through the mail. If you want to reuse a box for shipping that has alcoholic beverage labels on it, remove all logos and labels, so your package will pass through the mail system.

Check the Stability of the Box

If you plan to reuse a box, make sure it hasn’t lost its strength.  For example, a box that has endured the process of traveling across the United States is often not strong enough to protect the products you are shipping.  If you’re sending a stuffed animal, you might be OK.  But don’t expect Grandma’s dishes to arrive safely if you‘re shipping them in a box that has already seen the other side of the country.

Make a Good Impression

Finally, think about the impression you are making on your customer.  If you are planning to recycle boxes, reuse those boxes that are clean and professional looking.  I belong to quite a few eBay-related Facebook groups.  Every once in a while someone will post a picture of a box they received from an eBay seller that originally contained adult diapers. Not good!

Reusing boxes is a good idea, as long as you’re smart about it.  Stick to professional-looking, clean, sturdy boxes, and you’ll stay out of trouble.  Follow these tips, and your shipping journey will be smooth sailing!

Don’t forget – the USPS provides sellers free boxes for products being shipped via Priority Mail or Priority Mail Express.  And they’ll ship these free shipping supplies to your work or home for free.

 

About the Author

Miriam Otto is an eBay blogger and credentialed teacher with 13 years’ experience selling on the site.  She was a frequent guest on eBay Radio and has participated in eBay seller panels and projects.  Her blog, The eBay Life, is an all-in-one resource for eBay sellers.

Categories: Ecommerce Shipping Tags:

Easy Guidelines To Follow For Effective USPS Shipping

April 4th, 2019 Comments off

A smooth shipping process not only helps streamline your operations as an e-commerce seller, but also ensures your products reach your customers without undue delays.  Moreover, you can focus your efforts on growing your business instead of dealing with customer complaints and questions around package delivery status or postage due at the time of delivery.

What can you do to ensure a seamless shipping experience from the time your package leaves your hands and reaches your customer?  Follow these five easy USPS shipping guidelines!

Pay Attention To Your Package

Guideline #1 – Round up on Weights:  Did you know that the USPS rounds up package weights to the nearest ounce or pound depending on the mail class used?  To avoid underpaying for postage or even worse having your customer pay postage at the time of delivery, always round up your package weight.  As an example, if your package weighs 10 lbs. and 5 oz., you should use the shipping rate for an 11 lb. package.

Guideline #2 – Check the Dimensions:  Your package size can make a difference in how much you pay shipping!  Dimensional (DIM) weight may apply to a USPS package that is larger than 1 cubic foot (12″ x 12″ x 12″).  Pay attention to the dimensions of your package and avoid unnecessary empty space to lower shipping costs.

Does Your Shipping Label Match Your Package?

Guideline #3 – Verify the Mail Class:  What mail class should you use to ship your package?  This depends on the weight of your package, how soon you need it to be at its destination and also how much you want to pay for shipping.  Remember, each mail class allows packages up to a certain weight limit only.  Choose First Class Package Service for packages weighing up to 13 ounces and Priority Mail for packages over that weight limit!

Guideline #4 – Double check the Shipping Zone:  USPS Shipping Zones are calculated based on the distance between the origin and destination addresses.  Stamps.com customers should verify that the origin zip code (the zip code for where you ship your packages from) is set up correctly.

Guideline #5 – Match the Label to the Packaging:  Your shipping label should match your package!  For example, based on the package weight, size and shipping zone of your package, if you have decided to use a Flat Rate Priority Mail Box for your package, make sure to choose the corresponding mail class while printing your label.  Also, your Flat Rate label must only be used on a Flat Rate box.

USPS Shipping Made Easy With Stamps.com

When you ship with Stamps.com, you don’t need to worry about underpaying for postage.  Use your Stamps.com digital scale to accurately weigh your package and the software will automatically use the rounded up weight and charge you the appropriate shipping rate.  Next, enter the package dimensions so Stamps.com can determine whether or not DIM weight applies to your package.  Select the correct package type or enter the dimensions of your package.  Also, make sure to set up your origin zip code correctly. When you enter the destination address, Stamps.com automatically calculates the correct shipping zone for your package.  Finally, choose your mail class and Stamps.com will print the appropriate USPS shipping label for your package.

 

 

Stamps.com Trade Shows Q2 2019

March 19th, 2019 Comments off

Trade shows are a great opportunity to get out and meet customers and partners, establish new relationships, and to share Stamps.com with ecommerce shippers just like you!

Check out the table below to learn more about where we’ll be, and when. We’ll post more details on social media as these events get closer.

 

Conference Dates Location Venue
National Postal Forum May 5-8 Indianapolis, IN Indiana Convention Center
Seller Cloud User Conference May 9 Lakewood, NJ Lake Terrace
WMX Europe June 27-29 Dublin, Ireland Croke Park
IRCE June 25-28 Chicago, IL McCormick Place South
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