Where Do Product Features Come From? Amazon Sellers Like You
Last month, I made a commitment to you: to communicate more openly about our plans and our vision for Amazon sellers. It was bold because we’re all so busy, especially this month as we’ve been building some awesome new features into our Amazon seller products. For example, more keywords and metrics, better reporting, and a simpler user interface in our Amazon PPC advertising software Ignite. Plus, we’ve got enhancements to Amazon product naming, messaging search, product review filtering, and more in our Amazon seller feedback software, Feedback Genius.
And I am so excited that we are sharing them with you because it’s delivering on the commitment I made. And now I want to thank you; after my last post, some of you reached out with excitement and with questions, and I am so happy to hear your interest and to get a chance to engage with you. One of the questions really struck me: “Does this mean we will see a product roadmap?”
This is a common question in software development. Everyone wants to see a roadmap — including our competitors. But the truth is: beyond the features we’re actively developing our roadmap is pretty fluid because it needs to be. Our roadmap isn’t based on what we think you need; it’s based on solving our customers’ needs, which can (and do) change frequently.
So I want to tell you a little more about how you, Seller Labs software users, influence our products and their futures.
First off, I want to tell you that we get a lot of customer feedback. My Product Management team spends hours each week talking to customers directly. As well, our tireless and amazing Customer Success team is on call and advocating for our customers so that you have a great experience. The CS team spends every day (and sometimes well into the night) helping you achieve your goals. They take care of our customers first and personally, then they communicate the trends they hear about directly to me. I’ve even been known to pop in on calls, emails, and chats, and I review cases (volume and sentiment) every Friday, for at least an hour.
My point is that every time you talk to us, we’re listening. Multiple teams are hearing you and I’m listening. And we capture what you ask for; we track every request you make, organize them, rank them, and prioritize them. And, most importantly, we research them.
Researching feature requests and customer ideas takes a lot of effort. One of my favorite feature examples is Amazon ad scheduling. Did you know that Ignite was the first product to bring ad scheduling to Amazon? It’s been an absolute game changer for those who are using it to maximize their ad budgets.
The Ignite ad scheduling feature was based purely on customer demand. Numerous customers told us they loved Ignite, but they were running out of budget at 10 a.m. That’s a big problem, so we dug in. When we analyzed our customer behavior, we discovered that some customers were logging into Ignite just to pause a campaign manually, and this was often a recurring behavior, and inefficient one that we didn’t want our customers to have to waste time on.
Further research revealed that the pausing data was all over the place, not something we could standardize as a best practice in the product. What we determined, based off of all of this research, was that we needed to provide a way for OUR customers to schedule ads around the way that YOUR customers buy (or the way you want to promote). So we borrowed an approach that originates in broadcast programming, called dayparting (ad scheduling), but was popularized in digital advertising. Introducing ad scheduling, based on that idea of breaking the week into blocks, within Ignite made it possible for your campaigns to have a calendar, on which you can allocate your budget to specific times or days, down to the hour.
It was revolutionary for Amazon Advertising, and it’s all because of customer feedback!
So I thank you for bringing us your problems. They drive the solutions we build. Keep the ideas coming!
Lauren is our tech Product Manager at Seller Labs. Our Chief Problem Solver. In her free time, when she's not taking care of our customers needs, she's enjoying the great outdoors - gardening and gathering fresh eggs from her 7 chickens!