The opportunities Q4 brings are too big for brands to miss. More and more shoppers flock to Amazon to find gifts for their loved ones and scour for the best deals on the BFCM weekend. That’s why it is crucial for Amazon sellers to stay ahead of the curve.
Excellent planning and impeccable attention to detail are vital to ensure that your inventory, advertising campaigns, promotion and everything else are up to par.
Despite preparing months in advance, brands feel overwhelmed, overworked and unprepared when Q4 actually rolls around.
Mistakes happen and when there is so much hanging over your head, things can very quickly go south. In this article, we will talk about the big mistakes brands of all sizes make when prepping their Amazon store for the busiest season of the year.
Mistake #1: Not preparing at all
Those who fail to plan, plan to fail.
Hands down, the biggest mistake you can make is not planning at all. You can’t just go skating blindly through the holidays, expecting everything to magically work out.
If you are not prepared for the ballooning traffic, you’ll not only lose out on sales but also disappoint the customers that arrive at your listing wanting to be wowed with great deals and discounts.
Mistake #2: Experimenting with new things
Q4 might not be a great time to dive into uncharted waters. The fourth quarter might be the most wonderful time of the year with all the sales and profits, but it is also volatile and unpredictable.
There’s so much to take care of, so do not take upon any complicated tasks that need extra attention or resources. During the last three months of the year, focus all your effort and knowledge on making the most profit and nothing else. Launching a new product, completely updating content, or tinkering around with a new ad strategy can wait till January.
#3: Skimping on listing optimization
Not optimizing your listing can directly impact the performance of your ad campaigns. If your campaigns are generating traffic and increasing visibility but are not able to hit the conversion milestones, it might be because your listing is not optimized as it should be.
Your product copy must be comprehensive, clear and enriched with important product information such as color, size, materials and other attributes, images must be compelling enough for shoppers to make a confident purchase decision and A+ Content should give your shoppers the push they need to click on the “Add to Cart” button.
Tip: Don’t DIY. Hire an Amazon optimization agency to get the job done.
#4: Not creatively optimizing the brand store
The most successful brands refresh their Amazon storefront design to dress it up for the holidays. This does not have to involve a lot of time and effort. Here are some of the things every brand can do:
- Include a dedicated page that highlights all the discount offers running through your store.
- Add a seasonal banner at the top of the store to give it a holiday feel.
- Ensure that your bestsellers and gift-eligible products are prominently displayed.
#5: Focusing on the entire catalog
If you have limited resources and budget for Q4, it is advisable to focus only on the bestselling ASINs or holiday-related products that are more likely to sell.
#6: Not offering discounts
Even if you miss the Lightning Deals deadlines and other key promotion cut-offs, you can always run coupons and percentage-off promotions. These deal types can be set up in minutes and can be pushed using Sponsored Ads.
Want to know more about the type of discounts and promotions? Learn more in our article: The Ultimate Guide To Amazon Deals, Promotions & Coupons.
#7: Not optimizing ad campaigns
However good your Sponsored Ad campaigns are performing, you will have to re-tweak them a bit for the holiday season.
Your campaigns will be competing directly with a lot of holiday-related campaigns, so be sure to stuff them up with seasonal keywords that shoppers often use during these months, such as “holiday gifts,” “Christmas gift for husband,” etc.
#8: Not allocating enough budget
You can have the best deal to offer, but they will get lost in the crowd if you don’t adequately promote them.
Amazon Sponsored Ads are the most effective ways to cut through the noise and make your presence felt. To maximize the impact of your advertising campaigns, allocate more than the regular budget, especially during tentpole events like Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Don’t expect your regular advertising budget to work well for Q4.
If you run out of budget early, your ads will stop showing and you’ll miss out on valuable selling opportunities.
#9: Waiting too much to launch ad campaigns
Gone are the days when Black Friday marketing began on Black Friday morning.
Brands are coming up with creative ways to transform Black Friday from a one-day event into two weeks of online promotion and discount events. If you wait till BFCM weekend to promote your products, you will be left in the dust by the competitors.
Make sure to advertise aggressively on the days leading up to a big event rather than just on that day since shoppers are more likely to browse and research the purchases they are going to make before the big sale day.
#10: Going radio silent after the holidays are over
If you’ve done everything right, you’ll gain a bunch of new-to-brand customers who do not know a lot about your brand and your entire product line.
This presents an opportunity for you to create a lasting relationship that goes beyond just a one-time purchase. Brands can follow up with new customers to ensure that the delivery process was smooth and the product received was at par with their expectations.
Leverage Amazon’s Manage Your Customer Engagement tool to interact and encourage them to shop again from you.
Q4 can be a boom or bust – it’s up to you
The stakes for Q4 are so high, brands can’t afford to fumble. It is essential to properly prepare and refine your strategy, so your product flies off the shelf and new customers stick into the New Year and beyond. Just be sure to avoid the above-mentioned slips and Q4 will truly be the most profitable time of the year.
At eStore Factory, we ensure that our clients avoid these costly mistakes during the Q4 craze. Hire our Amazon seller central services if you need expert help powering through the most eventful period of the year.