What Amazon Australia Means For Your Multichannel Strategy

by
August 2, 2019
  1. Why Selling on Multiple Marketplaces Will Grow Your Business
  2. The Current State of Ecommerce in Australia
  3. Consider Amazon For Your Marketing Strategy
  4. How To Sell On Amazon Australia
  5. Amazon Seller Strategies That Work
  6. What Australian Marketplaces Can I Sell On?

Why Selling on Multiple Marketplaces Will Grow Your Business

Amazon has established itself in Australia and presents an opportunity to expand your ecommerce presence.

Amazon Australia just made it a whole lot easier to expand your global ecommerce presence. Best of all, ShipStation can make your multichannel management and delivery process a breeze. That’s why we’re pleased to announce our Amazon Australia guide for Multichannel Strategies.

Enter your email below to receive your own free copy of our “What Amazon Australia Means For Your Multichannel Strategy” ebook!

The Current State of Ecommerce in Australia

Amazon Australia One Year In

Amazon is not to be ignored. A year after Amazon Australia was released, its presence in the world of online marketplaces is already massive, particularly in the Australian market. With around one hundred million consumer products listed, Amazon Australia is well on its way to becoming the main name in Australian ecommerce.

Despite Amazon Australia’s infancy, it’s built with the same consumer and seller support systems that Amazon has spent years developing and perfecting. So, Amazon Australia is more or less ready out of the box.

In this primer to multichannel strategies, we’ll take a look at why you should use Amazon Australia as part of your sales strategy, how easy it is to start using Amazon Australia, and how to get the most out of it.

How Online Merchants Are Growing

Amazon Australia is primed to follow in the footsteps of Amazon US, which only a few years ago was home to just 11% of ecommerce interactions. Now, over 55% of US consumers use Amazon as their go-to source for online shopping.

This isn’t a fluke either. In 2017, Amazon accounted for 30.9% of American spending during Cyber Weekend. Amazon itself capitalises on this rapid growth with private-label products, some of which, like batteries, account for a third of all online sales in their category.

“Over 55% of US Consumers use Amazon as their go-to source for online shopping.”

That said, while Amazon provides direct sales from their own tech-heavy warehouses, third-party merchants can be far more profitable.

Amazon gives merchants a massive platform to set up shop while leaving inventory and bookkeeping in your own hands. Most importantly, you can take advantage of Amazon’s rapid growth and market penetration as more and more consumers turn to a one-stop marketplace for all their needs.

Why Should I Go Multichannel?

Online retailers go multichannel to increase visibility and sales. For some merchants that sell online and in physical stores, listing their products on Amazon is a good way to expand your reach. Amazon offers rapid growth and a searchable library of products. However, it’s not always a one-size-fits-all retail solution.

Multichannel strategy can be more effective when you look into all the available selling channels out there and consider where your target customers shop for certain products. It’s much more effective to focus your retail efforts on specific items and spread your inventory across multiple locations.

Don’t think of Amazon as a threat or alternative to other retail channels, but an additional avenue to attract and create loyal customers.

Not only will your brand name be in front of a whole new audience, but there’s the added opportunity to distribute branded packaging. This can even include promotional cards to encourage the customer to return to your website in return for incentives like discounts. It’s a fantastic way to showcase your branding and drive more awareness for your business and website. A specialist eCommerce agency like Emote Digital can guide you through the process of setting up an eCommerce ecosystem that is fully integrated with your marketplaces, fulfilment, inventory and accounting software to automate your processes and save you time.

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Consider Amazon For Your Marketing Strategy

In order to capitalize on making the switch to a multichannel business strategy, consider Amazon’s marketing potential for growing your business. Think about your marketing mix of products, price, promotions, and placement. With these in mind, you can get a better idea of how placing your products on Amazon Australia can be part of a successful marketing strategy.

The Four P’s of Marketing:

Products – A retailer needs to think about which products make sense for which marketplaces. You don’t have to list your entire catalogue everywhere you sell. Think through your margins, your shipping capabilities, the marketplace criteria and fees, and how all of this impacts the ROI.

Price – For most marketplaces, price is the determining factor in where you are placed. Amazon’s Buy Box algorithm considers pricing, availability, fulfilment, and customer service.

Promotions – SEO optimization is probably the most important part in the marketing/promotions of your listings. You can also buy sponsored product ads, participate in Lightning Deals, or set up your own promotions. And do outside-the-box marketing, like partnering with influencers. Maintaining strong reviews, shipping performance, and seller performance is also key.

Placement – Placement is showcasing the right product, at the right price, at the right place, at the right time. Convenience is key. Selling on marketplaces means going where your customers are.

Amazon helps make all this happen by providing a variety of real-time consumer insights and analytics. With this data, you’ll be able to provide effective, data-driven sales and product planning that cater to the interests and trends of your consumers. It’s like having a marketing statistician in your pocket—for free! After all, what’s good for you is good for Amazon.

With ShipStation’s Amazon Australia integration, all of your Amazon order information can import into a single, user-friendly interface.

On top of having automation rules that help make order management even simpler, you can view Amazon inventory levels, and check out your product’s details. You can even import, manage, and ship Amazon orders on the go with ShipStation’s mobile app.


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How To Sell On Amazon Australia

Selling on Amazon comes with a few restrictions. But the process is also incredibly simple. And with just a few quick steps, you can be selling on Amazon Australia in no time.

What Products You Can Sell On Amazon

Over this last year, Amazon Australia has been especially profitable for sales in the fields of toys, games, wellness, gadgets, pet supplies, and books. But that’s not to say that those are the only categories worth marketing in—there are still plenty of untapped markets.

Amazon allows for most types of products to be sold on their platform. However, there are quite a few restricted products.

Additionally, some items might require pre-approval, additional information, or supplemental guarantees from Amazon Australia prior to you listing them. Such items include, but aren’t limited to, laser pointers and hoverboards. If you sell internationally, you are required to ensure that the items you sell comply with all pertinent international laws and regulations.

How to Get Started On Amazon Australia

One of the great things about using Amazon Australia is that getting started is incredibly simple.

To register on Amazon, all you need:

  1. A business name—If you’ve already got that figured out, you’re well on your way!
  2. Your name, business address, business credit card information, and business credit card statement address.

Next, there’s 4 easy steps + a monthly fee of $49.95 (excluding GST):

  1. First, publish your inventory using Amazon’s Add a Product tool by uploading an inventory file or by using Amazon Marketplace Web Services.
  2. Next, let the customers do all the work and fill their carts with your products. Amazon helps out by offering 1-Click shopping and its brand identity.
  3. Once orders start coming in, it’s time to ship your products. ShipStation is your easy go-to—check out our plans to see what best fits your needs.
  4. Finally, the best part: After Amazon takes its share of seller fees on top of your monthly fees—taxes, customs, duties, referral fees, and closing fees—the balance of your orders is deposited into your accounts, complete with a handy notification email.

How To Become Prime Seller In Australia

One of the big draws of Amazon is Amazon Prime, which offers extremely quick, convenient shipping options for subscribers to Amazon Prime. In order to be a Prime seller, you must meet Prime shipping standards and be able to have your products in your customers’ hands within two shipping days.

While top-percentile Fulfilment by Merchant (FBM) retailers can qualify for Prime, the easiest way to accomplish this is to use Fulfilment by Amazon (FBA). Despite FBA’s ease of use, it does incur significant portions of your profits. This is due to the high premium of utilizing Amazon’s warehouses and logistics. In return, you gain an extremely competitive edge in the war for customer convenience.

Fulfilment by Amazon is best suited for retailers with quick turnover rates on products with high-profit margins.

Pros and Cons of Fulfillment by Amazon

The big question when it comes to operating with Amazon is whether to go for Fulfilment by Merchant (FBM) or Fulfilment by Amazon (FBA). There are pros and cons to each.

Fulfilled by Merchant

Pros

  • Full control over your inventory
  • Fewer Fees
  • Amazon Prime is still possible
  • Higher profit margins

Cons

  • All shipping responsibilities are yours
  • Harder competition for the Buy BoxAmazon Prime must be earned and maintained
  • Your own inventory storage is required
  • If not Prime-eligible, you may miss our on Amazon Prime customers

Fulfilled by Amazon

Pros

  • Automatically eligible for Amazon Prime
  • Simplified order fulfilment Greater chance of Buy Box
  • Multichannel fulfilment is supported by Amazon warehouses
  • Lower shipping rates

Cons

  • Additional fees cut into your profit margins Inventory problems involve Amazon
  • Inventory is remote Multichannel fulfilment is expensive

Conclusion

FBA

FBA is simply a matter of sending Amazon your inventory and letting them take care of the rest. This does, however, cut into your profits and, depending on what exactly you sell, may be entirely unnecessary.

FBM

Fulfilment by Merchant is best for merchants who have slow turnover rates and sell oversized products and/or merchants that are capable of managing inventory with the manpower and storage facilities they already possess. ShipStation is here to help you with the shipping aspect and can provide options such as Sendle, a courier for small businesses with no subscriptions or minimum requirements.

Enter your email address below to receive a free, full copy of our ebook “What Amazon Australia Means For Your Multichannel Strategy”

Amazon Seller Strategies That Work

Winning The Amazon Buy Box

Almost every seller’s goal on Amazon is to win the Buy Box. But what is the Buy Box?

It’s that little box that says “Add to Cart” instead of “See All Buying Options.” This might not sound like much, but “See All Buying Options” takes more clicks and can cause you to lose customers.

In fact, the simplicity of “Add to Cart” makes it account for 82% of all Amazon sales. Mobile-based shoppers, which account for 72% of Amazon’s customers, prefer it even more.

For the “Add to Cart” button to work properly, only one seller can hold it. So, if you are selling items other people sell, then you compete with them on Amazon.

In order to have a Buy Box, items need to be eligible (for example, new books were recently granted Buy Boxes), need quick shipping times, and most importantly, need to be competitively priced.

Amazon factors all the above information to determine which store’s items receive a Buy Box. Additional factors that determine Buy Boxes are:

  • whether or not you have a Professional Seller account
  • you are personally eligible for a Buy Box
  • whether or not you actually have said item in stock
  • if your items are new. Used items do not get Buy Boxes

There is one way to simplify and increase your odds of getting the buy box—use Fulfilment by Amazon. After that, it’s up to you to price competitively.

Buy Boxes are also a great aspiration for all retailers because underneath the Buy Box is the Other Sellers box. If your item has a Buy Box, it may be advertised on the sales pages of competing stores for that same item.

Here’s what the Amazon Buy Box “Add to Cart” button looks like on any Amazon product page:

In this example, 23 brands didn’t win the buy box and likely won’t get the sale considering 82% of Amazon sales occur through the buy box.

Here’s what the Amazon Buy Box “Add to Cart” button looks like on any Amazon product page:

Use Fulfilment by Amazon (FBA). Amazon will always promote sellers and products that help Amazon grow. If you use Amazon FBA to house and fulfil your items, you have the opportunity to become a Prime seller. If you are a Prime seller, you can win the buy box much more easily than sellers who do not

Earn the respect of the customer. The more positive customer reviews you have, the higher you rank on Amazon SEO and the more likely you are to win the buy box.

Oer the lowest price. Amazon’s buy box algorithm gives items with the lowest price a competitive edge. But Amazon looks at a few other factors beyond price. For instance, you can have the lowest price and not have the buy box due to low customer reviews, low customer ranking, and/or not participating in Amazon FBA.

Amazon SEO

If you are selling a unique product that only your brand sells, then you have the benefit of getting your own unique listing. This means you won’t have to compete for the buy box. In this scenario, Amazon SEO is the most important factor.

Amazon SEO Best Practices

The number of customer reviews and ranking. The more customers love you and say so, the higher your product will appear in search.

Selling through Amazon Prime. If you use Amazon FBA and are a Prime seller, you will appear higher in search results.

Product page conversion rate. Amazon wants to ensure as many people as possible are checking out on the product pages they land on. The higher your Amazon product page conversion, the higher your ranking.

Product page conversion rate is important because it is the one you can control the most. Can you get into Amazon FBA? Likely, but you must determine if it’s worth it for your own business. It isn’t for everyone. Can you get more customer reviews? Of course, but first people need to be able to find and buy your product.

  • If you are selling a commercialised product, focus on your price, getting into Amazon FBA, and getting reviews.
  • Amazon product page for Amazon SEO, getting reviews, and getting your product into Amazon FBA if it makes sense for you

Maintain a High Amazon Seller Rating

A high seller rating is extremely important to any retailer on Amazon. This can be achieved through three things:

Fast Shipping

If there’s one thing customers like aside from receiving the product that they expected, it’s getting that product delivered to their doorstep as quickly as possible. With online shopping, speed and convenience is the new customer shopping experience and you’re directly competing with Amazon Prime’s two-day shipping speeds.

To make the competition even stiffer, depending on how large a city your customers live in, same-day deliveries can be a realistic expectation. Check out local courier companies, such as Sendle, which is great for fast and affordable same-city and metro delivery.

Parcels sent in the same city are usually picked up in the morning and delivered that afternoon.

Punctual and Pleasant Customer Communication

Sometimes, customers become unhappy. Perhaps they ordered the wrong item, the parcel has gone missing or was damaged in transit,

or there was a burning question they’d like answered before they buy something sight-unseen. Regardless, complaints from customers will hurt your seller rating. This can be easily resolved by prioritizing customer service.

Return Management That Satisfies Both the Customer and Amazon’s Return Policies

Should a customer request a return, respond to it within 24 hours. Upon your approval of a buyer’s return request, Amazon sends that buyer a return label that is prepaid, if you choose. Rather than go through a return process, you may instead choose to deny the return request, issue refunds, or grant concessions without first going through the return process

and physically inspecting the item. For more details, see Amazon’s return policies.

Amazon Australia Best Practices

To summarize, sales strategy success on Amazon comes from a multitude of things:

Pricing – Competitive pricing beats out your competition and attracts customers. With Amazon’s customer analytics data, you’ll be able to effectively plan sales and product releases with customer trends in mind.

Prime Options – Prime status allows you to be more convenient than your competition, whether that’s on Amazon or from a brick-and-mortar. Customers want their products delivered as quickly as humanly possible, and with Amazon Prime, that means deliveries in two days or less.

Returns – Quality customer support and professional refund management ensure customer happiness. Amazon Australia does its best to make sure the return process is fair and satisfying for both you and your customers.

Your Brand – Multichannel marketing strategies allow Amazon to serve as an advertisement platform – it brings consumers to your own website and you don’t pay any fees. Depending on how you implement your sales strategy, it’s possible to use an Amazon storefront as a stepping stone to a wider or more professional range of products available on your own sales site.

Enter your email address below to receive a free, full copy of our ebook “What Amazon Australia Means For Your Multichannel Strategy”

What Australian Marketplaces Can I Sell On?

If you’re building your ecommerce presence, you might find it effective to sell on not just Amazon, but also on other services that cater to Australians, such as eBay, Bonanza, Fishpond, Catch, and ASOS.

Amazon

Amazon is a global ecommerce giant and is only going to continue to grow in Australia’s growing online market.

Pros:

  • High traffic volume and global customer loyalty.
  • Expand your customer reach with Amazon Prime in Australia.

Cons:

  • Amazon charges 6-15% commission fees for every transaction plus a 49.95 AUD monthly seller fee.

eBay

eBay is an online marketplace where you can sell just about anything— electronics to fashion apparel, new or used. They have been transforming how Australians shop online since 1999, so they’re a well-established ecommerce space to attract new customers.

Pros:

  • You can sell items by auction for fixed price on eBay. You get a certain number of listings free.

Cons:

  • Order fulfilment can be incredibly difficult without shipping software.

Bonanza

Bonanza is a user-friendly marketplace with a clean, modern layout. It offers tools that make selling products on a professional-looking store simple. With over 25,000 sellers, Bonanza offers a wide variety of products and attracts all kinds of customers.

Pros:

  • Has a Google Shopping integration to help you increase your sales
  • Offers multiple tools, like image editors, built into it.

Cons:

  • Sellers need ten comments that give positive feedback before direct checkout options can be used.

Fishpond

Fishpond is an Australian marketplace that makes sales simple whether you’re just getting started with eCommerce or are already

an established storefront. Sell your goods through the postal service, through your own courier company, or through a trade account with Fishpond.

Pros:

  • You can drop off your shipments at the post office, have Fishpond do courier pickup, or use your existing courier service if you have one.
  • Fishpond has an affiliate program that grants a 5% commission on orders generated from your own website.

Cons:

  • For merchants selling without a trade agreement, there’s a 10-17% commission fee.
  • Using the SmartSell system and utilizing a fishpond courier or the postal service won’t allow you to build your own brand—you’re anonymous.

Catch

Another Australian marketplace that is well-known is Catch—formerly named Catch of the Day. They also operates through eBay, which means the service has inherent multichannel marketing.

Pros:

  • You can sell products through both Amazon and eBay. Up to 6% commissions on affiliate sales.

Cons:

  • Has had incidents with user security.

ASOS Marketplace

ASOS Marketplace is a UK-based global sales platform that conducts all of its sales in £GBP. There is a particular aesthetic ASOS captures. For instance, “Stores” aren’t a thing on ASOS—they’re called “Boutiques”. And you can create one of your own for £20 a month, plus a 20% commission. It’s a flexible ecommerce platform that is used on 20% of all eCommerce sites online. With nearly limitless features, it offers a powerful experience to those who can afford its unparalleled amount of features.

Pros:

  • ASOS’s fashion-oriented marketplace lends itself to the sales of vintage, independent, and name brand clothes.

Cons:

  • Since ASOS anticipates higher profit margins, there’s a 20% commission on everything you sell.
  • ASOS requires your boutique to have at least 15 styles stocked at all times, with strict product image requirements.

Why You Should List Products On Several Channels

If you’ve yet to branch out from your singular storefront, getting started with multichannel ecommerce is as simple as signing up on an ecommerce platform, listing & marketing your goods, and waiting for purchases.

Specialist retailers might find that Amazon Australia is best for attracting cheap, bargain-hungry customers shopping for the basics or beginner-quality items. In this case, you might list your easily sold bargain products on Amazon and reserve their higher-end products for your main website or physical store.

By doing this, you can have a storefront designed to appeal to bargain and budget-conscious customers without impacting the buying power of consumers who buy premium products from your main website. Eventually, as those bargain-minded customers are funnelled into higher price tag shopping through recognition of your brand, they become introduced to the more premium goods you sell outside of Amazon.

How to Manage Your Multichannel Shipping Strategy

ShipStation streamlines shipping and ecommerce order fulfilment into a single easy-to-use platform that’s suitable for businesses of all sizes. ShipStation partners with over 250 ecommerce platforms and seamlessly integrates them into a single management platform.

Quickly connect all of your selling channels to ShipStation to begin importing all of your orders into a single, easy-to-use interface. Link all of your carrier accounts to ShipStation to simplify creating shipping labels. And we’ll update your selling channels with tracking information. Best of all, you don’t even need to pay for IT or manage servers to make it all work. ShipStation takes care of it all, making management easier for you and ensuring you’ll never mix up orders between your ecommerce channels.

It’s safe to say that managing orders become slightly more complicated with the more complex channels you use to sell goods, but there’s a solution provider for that.

Conclusion

The bottom line is that Australia now has an even more massive opportunity in the world of ecommerce in the form of Amazon Australia, and with Australia’s 2018 limitations on international retail services, it makes Amazon Australia the go-to choice for Australians who want to shop online. With Amazon Australia as your partner, you can count on them to give you the tools to make your online storefront a ripping success.

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