As Amazon Prime swells to more than 100 million customers, online retailers across the globe are taking note and taking action to appear on the ultimate fast shipping program – making competition fierce.
Success on Prime is no longer just about appearing on Prime. Instead, you need to adopt the following strategies for perfecting Prime and winning customers.
The importance of perfecting Amazon Prime
Amazon Prime is a brilliant tool for improving your Amazon search ranking, increasing your chances of winning the Buy Box, and encouraging conversions and repeat purchases. But, these benefits aren’t guaranteed for your Amazon business because:
- There are millions of Prime-eligible products;
- There are millions of Marketplace sellers; and
- There are plenty of other sales channels.
In other words, you need to put the work into Amazon Prime to make it work for you.
Strategies for perfecting Amazon Prime
There are three main eCommerce strategies to adopt when looking to improve your Prime performance that work to attract, win, and retain customers.
1. Perfecting your Amazon Prime listings
While Prime increases your visibility on the sales channel, it doesn’t guarantee the top spot or customer clicks. To do this, you need to adopt a strategy that improves the quality of your listings through:
Optimize your Amazon listings by including a descriptive and accurate product title, informative descriptions that incorporate your keywords, answers to commonly asked questions, Amazon’s hidden keywords, and longtail keywords. Together, these ensure that your listings turn up in the relevant search results, increasing your click-through rate and search ranking.
Make sure that your products are delivered ‘as described’ by using accurate and optimized product photographs, sourcing high-quality products that match your product descriptions, and using a trusted fulfillment partner or shipping carrier to ensure that your products are delivered with care.
While price war strategies should be avoided at all costs, you must still offer customers a fair and competitive price (alongside free delivery) while maintaining a healthy profit margin.
Finally, encourage customers to leave positive reviews by giving them a great experience that they want to talk about. Provide great products, fast shipping, and outstanding customer service. High customer review scores improve your SEO, chances of winning the buy box, and ability to enhance the buyer journey further – as well as providing some persuasive social proof for your customers.
2. Perfecting your Amazon Prime marketing
Appearing at the top of the search results with your shiny blue Prime badge certainly increases visibility. But what about items that aren’t at the top of search? To appeal to a broader audience, you adopt a Prime marketing strategy that incorporates:
Amazon advertising solutions
Amazon offers three advertising solutions, increasing your visibility across the marketplace: Sponsored Products, Sponsored Brands, and Stores.
Amazon Stores are free (and a no-brainer), while Sponsored Products and Brands are CPC advertising campaigns that display and highlight your listings on search results and product pages. These are especially useful for cross-selling and up-selling when potential customers are browsing similar items.
Amazon Prime Days
Amazon’s biggest sales day of the year is Amazon Prime Day – an annual sale that offers exclusive deals for Prime members only.
Ensure that your marketing strategy incorporates Prime Day by registering to participate in the lightning deals and creating offers, discounts, and coupons for customers to use on the day.
Sure, your potential customers might spend a lot of time browsing Amazon, but when they’re not, they’re browsing other places online such as Google, Twitter, Walmart, and eBay. It’s important to incorporate these other channels into your marketing strategy using social media, PPC advertising such as Google Ads, and other fast shipping programs such as Walmart Free 2-Day Shipping and eBay Guaranteed Delivery.
3. Perfecting your Amazon Prime service
Finally, you need to establish a strategy that delivers outstanding service, no matter how busy or popular you become. Specifically, this strategy must focus on:
Although Amazon handles most of the customer service for third-party Prime sellers, you still have the opportunity to differentiate yourself. All Prime sellers can offer free delivery and fast shipping to Prime members, but not everyone will provide an exceptional and personalized customer experience.
Respond proactively to queries and issues, and create a positive experience through consistent branding, stunning photography, glowing customer reviews, and timely post-purchase communications.
The go-to method for becoming eligible for Amazon Prime is by using Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) to pick and deliver Prime orders. This is a great route to Prime for sellers who sell exclusively on Amazon.
Another way to get on Prime is through Seller Fulfilled Prime (SFP), wherein the seller is responsible for meeting service level agreements to remain on Prime. But why would someone choose to do this instead of letting the pros at Amazon handle fulfillment?
If a seller expands to other marketplaces or has their own store, it’s important to match the speed of their Amazon orders to level the playing field and diversify their business. However, Amazon’s multi-channel fulfillment arm comes with different SLAs, that don’t ensure Prime-level speed. In some cases, marketplaces have disallowed fulfillment through Amazon since they also use Amazon-branded boxes for all deliveries.
In this case, it may make more sense to use one uniform fulfillment service to handle all of your orders. It ensures inventory efficiency, you only have to send to one service, and you get consistent service levels across channels.
Note: Deliverr is no longer accepting new merchants for the Amazon SFP program. However, you can set up Deliverr to fulfill your standard FBM orders on Amazon. Deliverr also provides pre-approved access to Walmart’s fast shipping program, integrates directly into eBay’s fast shipping program, and can help you guarantee fast deliveries on your own store. Use our fulfillment calculator to compare rates!
Finally, you want to encourage customer loyalty to improve your CLV figures. Since these customers already receive free and fast delivery, you need to think of alternative methods to drive repeat purchases.
Amazon Prime is an eCommerce subscription service that guarantees Amazon repeat customers. But to help guarantee repeat customers for your store, you should be continually optimizing. Implement these listing, marketing, and fulfillment strategies to make the customer journey simple, enjoyable, and unforgettable, whether someone’s buying from you for the first or 100th time.