6 Ways to Beat your Competition with Amazon Private Label

A successful product is like a pro baseball pitch: just a throw isn’t enough. It needs something special: a spin, a curve, an angle.

As competitors crowd Amazon, the need for differentiation grows. A product with an angle always has a customer.

“But how do I differentiate?” you ask. The 6B’s. The 6 Ways to Beat your Competition with Amazon Private Label.

These 6 strategies are also great to set you apart and make sales:

1. Better
2. Before
3. Brute
4. Bundle
5. Brand
6. Bulk

After reading this post, you’ll be able to make a strategic decision about product positioning.

BETTER

Make it physically better. In what way? Amazon will tell you!

Go to Amazon.com, look at your competitors, click on the review count next to their star rating, then click to see 3-star reviews on the left. This shows you the “Most helpful critical review” on the right hand side.

Often, a customer drops a gem: a physical modification to improve the product. Visit another competitor. Then another. Then another. If there’s a pattern in the “Most helpful critical review”, make the physical change and profit. Make sure it’s a small change.  Big changes aren’t always financially viable.

Here we are looking at the leader for the search term “babyproof edge guards.”
6 Ways to Beat your Competition on Amazon
We click on the “431 customer reviews” button, and click on the 3-star category, Amazon will show us the “most helpful positive review” and the “most helpful critical review.”

The critical review suggest a product improvement. In this case, it’s that the tape doesn’t adhere as well as that reviewer would have liked. Look around. If you see a pattern in the feedback, your position could be “sticks better!”

6 Ways to Beat your Competition on Amazon

BEFORE

Sell it before anyone else. Many look at what’s already popular on Amazon and try to copy it.

And why not? That’s a good strategy!

But if this is your third or fourth product, consider a first-to-market play. Instead of sourcing Amazon to Alibaba, try Alibaba to Amazon private label. Ask your supplier what else they’ve got. Look at offerings on other e-commerce sites that aren’t sold on Amazon. Look at Wal-Mart, Target, Staples. Ask big box employees what’s been selling well, with the excuse that you need gift ideas for your (husband, wife, or other relative who matches your Amazon target market). Go to large online communities like Reddit, and ask what they want but don’t have in your product category. Look at product launch communities like Kickstarter, Indiegogo and Quirky and see what people are making.

BRUTE

Push it with brute force.

For example: you roll out 1 white, generic lint roller (pun lintended). There’s nothing particularly special about your lint roller, but you build up your review base to hundreds of reviews, and customers perceive your product as the definitive solution.

There’s force involved in launching every new product, but the amount of force required depends on the leaders in your niche. The path to page 1 is a simple calculation.

BUNDLE

Everyone’s selling it on its own? Bundle in an accessory. Some common bundling techniques include:

– adding a book (ebooks are so 2014, add a real instructional pamphlet)
– giftable packaging
– adding a case or storage container
– add a warranty
– a product add-on that enhances the experience
– creating a full-on kit based around a specific activity

With physical add-ons, exercise caution.

If the customer can’t use the accessory with the main offering right out of the box, don’t add it. Don’t add “nice to have” items. They increase your shipping fees and add additional costs in the mind of the buyer.

Here’s a good example of an add-on. For the search term “whiteboard markers”, Expo sells markers plus the one thing every customer inevitably needs: an eraser. So, they bundled:

6 Ways to Beat your Competition on Amazon

Kits are a little different than bundles.

If you make a product kit, it’s less clear which product is the main offering. The best kits serve every need of an enthusiast in a certain area.

Here’s a good example of a kit, as you can clearly see. Ha ha. According to JungleScout, these guys pull in $49k, $25k, and $24k per month respectively. The average person may not know about at-home canning, but an enthusiast does. And an enthusiast needs a full kit.

Kits are particularly effective if the combination is hard-to-find in a big box store, making your listing the only game in town.
6 Ways to Beat your Competition on Amazon

BRAND

Imagine that you’re grocery shopping.

There’s Nutella on the shelf. Creamy, thick, chocolatey Nutella. Next to it, there’s a generic chocolate spread. If you buy Nutella instead of no-name, you’re also buying pride, satisfaction, the feeling that you’re getting the best experience for you and your family.

Amazon is the same. Position your product so that it has a brandable term in the title, bullets, description. Take pride in your work so that your customers can take pride in it too.

BULK

If everyone else sells a single unit, can you sell a pack of 2? 5? 10? 25? 50?

Here’s a hack for you: consumers perceive larger quantities as offering some sort of a per-unit discount. Most people don’t do the math. They just assume. As a seller, you can take advantage of this phenomenon and sell multiples. But make sure the bulk deal is logical. Bulk hand soap: go crazy. Bulk 3-hole punchers: what are you going to do with those?

Here’s one: novelty sunglasses. You can’t make money selling 1 pair at a time (Amazon fees considered), but you can sure make money selling 36 pairs at a time!

Beat your Competition on Amazon

There you have it, the 6B’s of product positioning:

1. Better
2. Before
3. Brute
4. Bundle
5. Brand
6. Bulk

Think about your product and how to spin it, and using the 6 ways to beat your competition on Amazon–they won’t know what hit ’em. We hope you enjoyed our article on the 6 Ways to Beat your Competition with Amazon Private Label.

 


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