- Lena R. Liberman
- On November 15, 2017
- 0 Comments
Nervous about Black Friday / Cyber Monday? Join us as we talk with special guests about their tips to help sellers not only succeed but thrive as you approach the Cyber 5 and beyond!
Posted by Seller Labs on Wednesday, November 15, 2017
Tyler got us into the holiday spirit and kicked things off with Seller Labs Founder Brandon Checketts. Brandon gave an update on the Seller Labs Cares Toys for Tots holiday campaign. He thanked those who have already contributed and encouraged others to join our efforts.
Now onto the tips from the experts! And be sure to get more info from these experts’ videos collected at SellerLabs.com/Cyber5.
Segment 1: Scanner Society’ Cordelia Blake
- Cordelia described Scanner Society as “like a chamber of commerce for online sellers.”
- Cyber5 Weekend presents a great opportunity for those in the arbitrage business to buy low and sell for a profit in time for Christmas.
- All sellers should be mindful of proximity to Amazon warehouses. For those who know that they are close to fulfillment centers and have a history of getting merchandise checked in quickly, there’s still time to ship and get stock in and for sale for Q4. For those for whom it takes longer, not so much.
- Don’t get so bogged down in Q4 that you overlook other seasonal opportunities just around the corner. You should already be planning for Valentine’s Day, Chinese New Year (growing rapidly in sales), St. Patrick’s Day, and even into Easter. Move on to Q1 2018.
- For more info or to keep up with Cordelia, check out ScannerSociety.com.
Segment 2: eGrowth Partners’ Cynthia Stine
- Cynthia is a former seller and known as “the queen of reinstatement” for all that she does to help sellers work out problems with Amazon. “Amazon keeps throwing things sellers’ ways, and we keep helping them fix it.”
- Q4 is “the happiest time of year for sellers” where they can make the bulk of their money. The worst thing to happen now is to get a listing pulled or for a seller to get suspended.
- The most common reasons for suspension right now: selling inauthentic goods, performance issues, product quality issues, and brand infringement. Amazon suspensions or listing removals feel like they are out of nowhere but there are often clues leading up to these actions.
- Cynthia made an extended video of her tips for avoiding infringement issues for private-label sellers, drop-shippers, arbitragers, and wholesalers. See the full video at SellerLabs.com/Cyber5.
- Sellers need to follow rules and reduce risk. Cynthia’s tips should be used year round but sellers should be extra mindful during Q4 when volume is higher (more sales opportunity but also more risk). Get into the habit of minding your risk regularly. Treat it like brushing your teeth.
- Follow Cynthia at eGrowthPartners.com.
Segment 3: The Best From The Nest’s Robyn Johnson
- Robyn started her business with $100 and built that up to seven figures (You go, girl!) Best from the Nest started as resellers and now they work with brand owners. TBotN has a diverse inventory that allows them to see many sides of the Amazon platform.
- Robyn’s to-do list for right now just as Cyber5 is about to start:
- Make sure your repricing is on point. Use repricing software.
- Give the people what they want! People want sales and discounts! Run a sale and a promo to add urgency and incentive.
- Increase unit session percentage to tell the Amazon algorithm that your page is a money page. Velocity and ranking! (For a deep dive into this, grab your free copy of Sellers Moving The Amazon Flywheel: Maximize Your Roles and Rewards In The Amazon Ecosystem.)
- Be careful with apparel. You don’t want people purchasing ALL the sizes and colors only to return all but one.
- Up your ad-spend based on your Detail Page Sales & Traffic report. (Learn how to improve your Sponsored Products ads with the Mastering Amazon PPC free eBook.)
- Going forward, consider merchant fulfillment and selling things that don’t vary by size and that fit and ship in flat-rate boxes. But be careful, merchant fulfillment can be “cuh-ray-zee” in terms of time and effort.
- Find Robyn at BestFromTheNest.com.
Segment 4: TaxJar’s Jennifer Dunn
- Jenn is Chief of Content for TaxJar. Simply put, “TaxJar helps sellers report and file the sales tax they’ve collected.” This has never been more timely.
- According to TaxJar data, Cyber Monday is now the biggest sales day on Amazon, followed by the Sunday right before Cyber Monday, followed by Prime Day. So it’s not Black Friday in the top three any longer. Plan accordingly!
- Make sure your product tax codes are correct. This is extra important for groceries. There are also weird exceptions like no sales tax on clothing bought by Pennsylvania residents. If you enter things correctly, Amazon will apply these rules.
- It seems simple, but . . . don’t over-collect or under-collect sales tax from your customers. Many sellers do one or both. Why? Because there have been so many changes to sales tax laws and they vary so much by state.
- If you are under-collecting, when it comes to file, the state will make you pay the difference out of pocket. Two percent seems small, but it can make a huge difference to your margins, especially when it comes to holiday volume.
- If you are under-collecting and you don’t give it back, that is considered tax fraud.
- One big reason sellers get sales tax wrong: When they set up their Amazon Seller account, they weren’t thinking big or long-term or about taxes. They didn’t have guidance and they just entered what they thought was correct so that they could start selling ASAP. Go in now and check your settings!
- TaxJar will guide you in your settings. Go to FBAsalestax.com for the free eBook.
- Don’t be scared of taxes! Follow up with TaxJar.com.
Final Words from Seller Labs’ Very Own Tyler Henderson
- Don’t get hung up on holiday-centric keywords. Unless your product is truly Christmas themed, don’t add words like “Christmas” and “holiday.” Focus on real sustained conversion, not temporary impressions or clicks.
- Video from all of the presenters as well as Chad from Skubana at SellerLabs.com/Cyber5.