There is no telling how long the U.S. will face this crisis, but some estimates show that lockdowns could potentially last several months – or even as long as 18 months. Let’s hope that doesn’t happen…
In the meantime, to ensure the survival of their businesses, Amazon sellers will need to make some drastic changes in order to succeed in times like this.
1. Temporarily reduce or pause advertising spending on Amazon
The FBA freeze started on March 17th. An Amazon representative contacted one of our clients directly to encourage them to reduce advertising spend during the crisis. This will assist sellers with not overpaying for ad spend and saving the marketing dollars for future investment.
If you have experienced a reduction in sales during the crisis, especially if you are selling non-essential goods, we recommend reducing or suspending your ads until further notice.
2. Consider Fulfillment by Merchant
If you have inventory available that isn’t currently in an Amazon fulfillment center and you’re unable to create a shipment, you can fulfill the products yourself. Look, no one likes change, not even us at EHP Consulting Group, but change is needed. Businesses need to embrace change and pivot during times like these, in order to stay on-top.
When shipping packages yourself, you first must either clone or change your FBA products into FBM (Fulfilled By Merchant) You have 24 hours to mark the order as ‘Shipped.’ Failure to ship orders within 24 hours may affect your seller account health.
It is as easy as 1.2.3…. – Amazon offers shipping carrier services from which you can purchase directly through Amazon and print.
Read more about FBA vs. FBM fulfillment methods here.
3. Switch business models
Because of the difficulties you may have securing products from China or other overseas providers, business models such as private label, wholesale, and dropshipping will become difficult during the outbreak. Furthermore, retail arbitrage may also suffer due to self-isolation and lockdown practices. Many retail stores will close.
Other business models that may succeed during this COVID-19 Time are handmade, online arbitrage, kindle direct publishing, and to possibly manufacturer your own products.
Handmade: With handmade, you can create your own products such as seasonal gifts (Easter, Mother’s Day), clothing & accessories, and toys & games and ship them to the consumer. You can apply for Handmade on Amazon’s website.
Online arbitrage: While retail arbitrage may not be possible during the outbreak, online arbitrage might be a viable alternative. Similar to retail arbitrage, online arbitrage involves purchasing a product from one retail site such as Ebay.com or Walmart.com and listing it on Amazon at a higher price.
Kindle Direct Publishing: If you have a knack for writing and creating content, you might consider writing books and publishing them on Amazon. Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) allows authors to create both digital and print formats on Amazon. Like dropshipping or Amazon Merch, there is no cost to get started; you simply need to create the material.
Manufacture your own products: 3D printers are becoming less and less expensive. And there are some sellers on Amazon who design, print, and sell their own 3D-printed goods.
Start diversifying and don’t forget about eBay, Etsy, & Walmart. Expansion is key for business! If you need any information or assistance with expansion, we can help, or checkout channeladvisor for more info.
4. Focus on your brand
We all hope and believe commerce will return to normal eventually. So, while your sales may drop for a few months, this is a good time to focus on your brand and your overall message. It is a great time for product add-ons, product boxes, product inserts, and more. This will assist you with getting ahead of competition while times are rough.
Trust us – the extra expense will not only satisfy customers, but it will make your brand a more premium one. We all know premium brands like Apple, who never falter price due to their boxing, packaging, product, design, and tech.
Still have more questions or need more info? Contact Us Today!