How to Win on Amazon Without All the Risks

 

In the Q4 of 2016 Amazon.com generated

  • $28,222,222,222 sales per day
  • $509,259,259 sales per hour
  • $8,487,654 sales per minute
  • $141,460 sales per second

In 2018 Amazon.com’s e-commerce sales in the U.S. reached a staggering $258.2 billion -- capturing nearly half of the U.S. e-commerce market by the end of the year.

For retailers and manufacturers, being blocked out or unsuccessful on Amazon means being left out of 50% of the market. But the path to capturing your share of Amazon dollars isn’t always smooth. In fact, increasingly, even competitive Amazon retailers feel that their brands are unprotected, the rules are changing too fast to keep up, fees are climbing, and risks, which seem to be surpassing even the rate of growth, makes Amazon as scary as it is necessary.

Pitfalls and risks include:

  1. Chargebacks/Fees 

*Lost Product Fee - Amazon charges you back if they decide your shipment is not correct. For example: They ask for 20. You send 20. They say only 15 were received -- even though you know 20 were in the box. Even with filing a ‘claim’ with them when there is a discrepancy, their word generally trumps yours, and they’ll charge you a FEE for the missing five.

* Weight Fees -- Your box weight or dimensions are not correct. Amazon will charge you a FEE for being incorrect.

* Replenishment Fees – A product not available to them - out of stock. If they order it, you have to ship it or give an expected in stock date, or risk another FEE.

*Stocking and Storage Fees

*Pay to Play Fees

 

  1. Being Represented by Amazon or Multiple Third Parties Sellers

* Amazon prices the product at their discretion, quite often just above wholesale cost (not always adhering to MAP), undercutting all other sellers on the platform – as well as off. Retail and other online outlets stop buying those products because they cannot compete. This drives down your profit, everywhere!

* Pricing is inconsistent, and all over the place – you run the risk of ticking off the retailers and brick and mortar businesses trying to adhere to your brand rules, and customers run to the lowest prices undercutting your profits and brand value.

* No control over brand presence

* No control over information stated in the listing. This undermines your brand, increases the likelihood of BIG returns, and creates legal liabilities.  

* Sellers provide no benefit other than purchasing at wholesale - they do nothing to help support your brand

 

  1. Representing Yourself – As with most specialties, a lack of experience or expertise can come at a significant cost.

*You can pay Amazon an exorbitant rate to create your A+ listings, or create them yourself. If you opt to create them yourself, you’ll discover that Amazon is very particular in what they’ll approve, making it even more difficult and time consuming. If you have multiple products, this scales exponentially.

*You risk getting blocked out, or your account shut down, because you make a rookie mistake in handling your accounts, re-sellers, and their listings. (Or your re-sellers mess it up for everyone.)

*You risk running out of inventory by not knowing the cycles, fulfillment processes, storage rules, and docking challenges.

*If you’re not smart about it, you can find yourself competing with others (including yourself and Amazon), driving down prices, and losing the Buy Box, all of which minimizes volume and profit profit .

*Not knowing how to optimize your listing, videos, ratings, ads, reviews, etc. can mean your brand doesn’t get its fair share of the existing demand, and your brands suffer.

*Being a lone manufacturer, you may not being important enough – or have the right relationships – for Amazon to address your conflicts, issues, or disputes. The Amazon machine is vast and impersonal.

*Lack of knowledge of shipping and packaging requirements costs you time and money; driving up returns, storage fees; all the while driving down customer satisfaction and sales.

*Hiring and ramping up the right ecommerce management and fulfillment team, and investing in the right software is expensive, and you pay the price for their learning curve. They are expensive, can hurt your brand, and can make you look bad!

 

 

Blue Sky Mining Company is your answer.

As top Amazon ecommerce experts, for a flat fee (generally around 15%) we can successfully position your products, protect your pricing, service your brand presence, fulfill your orders, and manage your inventory, all while delivering strong results backed up by the reporting you need. Our proprietary software and uniquely experienced team delivers top, white-glove service, answering questions, and optimizing your Amazon experience. This simple, flat rate investment delivers a strong, scalable, and easily measurable ROI.

Blue Sky Mining Company is a team of Amazon experts.

  • The team has 20 +/- years combined experience working intimately within the Amazon marketplace. (Yep, we’ve been there since the early days.)
  • We have experts in every aspect of FBA selling and account management, including
    • Listing Optimization (specs, SEO, variants, etc.)
    • Case management
    • Ad Campaign Management
    • Inventory Management
    • Shipping to FBA (requirements, center knowledge, packaging knowledge, etc.)
    • Account reconciliation
  • We are compensated based on performance. That means we’re in it together: Our success is your success, if you don’t do well, neither do we.

About the ROI: The numbers speak for themselves

  • The cost of 1 full time employee to manage an Amazon FBA business is a salary of $40k, plus benefits = min $50,000/yr
  • Compare that to 15% fee on $350,000 gross sales = $52,500/yr, so, with gross sales less than $350k you are already paying more than our rate. But, keep in mind that --
    • Your full-timer also has to be an expert in all aspects of Amazon FBA for $40k/yr (Good luck!)
    • That $350k in gross sales volume (and above) actually requires more than 1 FTE to manage all aspects including shipping, content development, listing management, fulfillment, inventory, conversion rates, etc. (assuming they do it right, and know all the ins and outs)
    • And, as we mentioned, rookie mistakes can be very costly
      • Listings shut down
      • Stores shut down
      • Products blocked
      • Ability to ship product suspended
      • Monitoring FBA fees
      • Reconciliations
      • Reimbursements
      • Seller account and ratings management
      • Inventory fees
      • Docking issues
      • Packaging issues
      • …and so many more

What makes Blue Sky Mining Company qualified to be your outsourced ecommerce solution?

Proprietary Software and Data

Blue Sky Mining Company has worked closely with software developers to create custom, enterprise level platforms to pull performance data, giving us unique insights behind the Amazon curtain – which gives us a competitive advantage we pass along to our customers.

A Seasoned, Service-Driven, Expert Leadership Team

Our team has a comprehensive ecommerce background, with specialized experience on the Amazon platform. We build strong relationships by helping our clients build and preserve their brand’s integrity and value. Each member of our team brings a unique set of skills to the table to accomplish the goal.

Lori Thomas, General Manager, stems from a sales and marketing background with companies ranging from mom and pop shops to Fortune 500. Upon moving into the ecommerce world, she drew upon this experience to increase revenue from $40M to over $100M within 2 years.

Leading our Brand Management Team is Kari Ennis. The team has over 10 years combined experience in developing strategic partnerships, building brand recognition, digital marketing, and increasing ecommerce revenue. Kari Ennis successfully managed a team of 17 buyers for a third party seller, working in 8 different categories generating over $48M in annual revenue through multiple million-dollar partnerships. She is deeply dedicated to serving her clients needs, providing accurate information and guidance for building strong, high performing brands. The team has developed multi-million dollar partnerships by directing product optimization, marketing, and driving high conversion rates. Our retail partnerships achieve substantial sales growth and develop into long term relationships.

Superior Marketing, Content, and Fulfillment Staff

We have a staff of exceptional support team consisting of Buyers, Content Managers, Campaign and SEO Optimizers, Photographer/Videographers, Shippers and full accounting staff.

 


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