Selling on Amazon may seem very tempting for the simple reason that you don’t have to spend money to drive traffic to your website. Instead, you get an opportunity to attract millions of customers already visiting with high intent of buying. When done right, it can be the most successful sales channel for your Ecom/ D2C brand. And that’s precisely why we have been deconstructing Amazon through a series of blogs – from basics to deeper insights.
In our last blog, we covered Amazon product listing in detail. Today, we are sharing all you need to know to win the “Amazon Buy Box”. With 83% of overall Amazon sales happening through the Buy Box, it is one of the best tools you can have to increase revenues without spending a dime. Read on to know five key tips to win the Amazon Buy Box and skyrocket your sales!
What is the Amazon Buy Box?
On the Amazon product details page, you would have seen a section on the right-hand side with two buttons – “Add to Cart” and “Buy Now” – this box is the Amazon Buy Box or featured offer section. Here is how it looks:
The Buy Box allows customers to have a one-click buying experience. This naturally results in increased sales for sellers. Simple, right? Not exactly.
The buy box isn’t active for all sellers. Only the seller offering the best shopping experience is chosen for the buy box position by Amazon’s proprietary algorithm. Other sellers appear as a clickable list below that, escaping the eye of most customers and hence losing sales.
What’s worth noting is that your Buy Box performance not only impacts your sales volume but also impacts your Amazon Ads performance, and search listing. If your product does not appear on the buy box for an extended period, Amazon stops your sponsored ads, and you are ranked lower than your competitors in the search listing. So, keep a close eye on how your products are performing on Buy Box.
Before we share how to win the Buy Box, let’s first understand the eligibility criteria for the buy box. To be eligible, you must:
- Have a professional seller account
- Maintain good performance metrics (Order Shipment Rate, Cancellation Rate, Late Shipment Rate – more on this below)
- Have sufficient inventory in place
Here is how you can check your Amazon Buy Box eligibility:
Step 1: Go to the “Manage Inventory” section in your Seller Central account
Step 2: Click “Preferences” on the right-hand corner
Step 3: Choose “Buy Box Eligible” from the dropdown menu (if it’s not already selected)
Step 4: Now when you go to your inventory section, you will see yes against the products that are eligible for the buy box
“ProTip: You can check the buy box percentages (how often your product is shown in the buy box section) of your products in real-time under “Reports” in Seller Central. Use Reports > By ASIN > Detail Page Sales > Traffic by child name.”
How to win the Amazon Buy Box?
Now that the basics are covered, it is time to know how to win the prestigious Buy Box spot with tips that have worked for thousands of D2C brands worldwide:
Tip #1: Use FBA for fast and free shipping
When you are selling via Amazon, there are two ways to ship your products to the customers – Fulfilled By Amazon (FBA) or Fulfilled By Merchant (FBM).
If choosing FBM, you will be responsible for picking, packaging, and shipping the orders you receive on Amazon. In contrast, for FBA, the Amazon team will take care of the entire process. Amazon favors FBA accounts over FBM while selecting the seller for the buy box to ensure fast and free prime shipping.
It does not mean that sellers with FBM do not get a chance to win the buy box. But as Amazon has no control and visibility on how you will fulfil the order, they might take their time to analyze how you perform in order processing and shipment time. Therefore, we recommend using FBA because their shipping time and customer service are exceptional and difficult to compete with
“Pro Tip: New to Seller Central Account? Use Fulfilled by Amazon (FBA) rather than Fulfilled by Merchant (FBM) while selecting the shipping method for faster buy box eligibility approval.”
Tip #2: Develop a competitive pricing strategy
Apart from the fulfillment method, pricing is the second important factor that the buy box algorithm evaluates. It considers the landing price (which includes shipping and handling charges) while selecting the best seller for the buy box position.
As the algorithm constantly compares the pricing of the products not only within Amazon’s website but also on other third-party seller websites, it’s important that your pricing is highly competitive and you constantly update it as per the market trends. We recommend using the automated pricing tool provided by Amazon to create pricing rules and set parameters for the catalogue you are offering.
“ProTip: Use rule-based and algorithmic pricing for better results rather than manually changing the price listing.”
Tip #3: Build your Amazon account health
Amazon truly portrays the ethos of customers as the king, so they track metrics like Order Deficit Rate, Cancellation Rate, and Late Shipment Rate, which tells them how well the seller is meeting the buyer’s expectations.
Order Deficit Rate (ODR) combines three different metrics, Negative Feedback Rate (1&2 star rating), A-to-z Guarantee Claim Rate, and Credit Card Chargeback Rate. Keep your ODR below 1% at all times.
The Cancellation Rate is the percentage of orders canceled by the seller in a given time period. It does not include cancellations requested by customers. Keep your cancellation rate below 2.5% by keeping your inventory updated.
Late shipment happens when the shipping occurs after the expected ship date. Aim for keeping your Late Shipment Rate factor below 4% by notifying Amazon and your customers about the shipment as soon as it is picked for delivery. Use Amazon easy ship so shipping confirmation happens automatically when the Amazon agent picks up the order.
“ProTip: Keep your ODR below 1%, Cancellation Rate below 2.5% and Late Shipment Rate below 4% at all times.”
Tip #4: Improve your seller feedback rating
Your seller feedback rating consists of the average feedback received by customers for the last 365 days. A higher weightage is given to the ratings received in the last 90 days. Amazon will send your customers an email to provide feedback on delivery, depth of product listing, and the quality of service provided. Receiving a two-star or one-star rating will prevent you from appearing on the buy box. Here is how the seller feedback rating form looks:
NOTE: It sometimes happens that your customers may leave bad product reviews on seller feedback, impacting your seller feedback rating. In such cases, contact Amazon citing the issue, and they will remove the feedback instantly.
“ProTip: Focus on creating a wonderful experience for your customers at Amazon.”
Tip #5: Keep your inventory updated at all times
Amazon does not want their customers to be not able to buy due to product unavailability (that is a loss of revenue for everyone, isn’t it!). That’s why if you have only one unit left and your competitor has 20 units of the same item, Amazon will favor your competitor for the buy box position.
Maintaining a healthy stock will increase your chances of winning the buy box. You can use third-party inventory management tools to keep track of low-stock items. If you are using FBA, ensure that your stock at Amazon warehouses is up to the mark with your consumer demand – keep delivery time and fulfillment processes to the warehouse in mind as you plan your inventory for the next month.
“ProTip: Set your listing status to inactive if you are going on a vacation or are unavailable to manage your Amazon account.”
Remember, Amazon is all about customers. Follow these simple tips and keep the customer experience at the core of all your processes to win the Amazon Buy Box and increase sales.
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