How to Thrive on Amazon around the Holidays: Tips and Tricks to Prep this Season

It’s the most wonderful time of the year … for shopping! eMarketer recently predicted that retail sales during the 2019 holiday season will exceed one trillion dollars for the first time ever, and with the knowledge that consumers are looking for more personalized experiences than ever before, the pressure to deliver is at an all-time high. 

Amazon, naturally, continues to offer a big opportunity for holiday retail success. In addition to being well ahead of the curve by using Prime Day as its first major holiday push (this year it raked in $7BN in sales), Amazon has made a number of announcements recently to set the tone for holiday cheer, with one-day shipping for Prime members and the roll-out of “Happy HoliDeals” in the weeks leading up to Black Friday. 

Figuring out how best to fit Amazon into your holiday marketing strategies can be tricky, especially when it comes to balancing the investment between physical locations and the online experience. Some retailers are doing this well and thriving without Amazon (think Glossier, shoe companies Rothy’s and Koio, as well as any number of DTC brands), but many more rely heavily on the site to augment both digital and real-world strategies. So if you’re looking to leverage Amazon to your advantage this holiday season, here are a few tips and best practices for retail success.

Understand your audience

It seems like common sense, but before you do anything else, it’s necessary to understand who your audience is. Amazon has steadily made it easier for brands to learn more about shoppers than ever before, so take advantage of the data. For consumers, who value personalization above all else, nothing is as quick a turn-off as an ill-informed message.

With the holiday season shortened by six days this year, time is not on your side in the fight for space in a saturated market. Unfortunately, neither is budget. While many advertisers rely on holiday sales spikes to make their numbers for the year, you should be prepared to spend up to four times your normal budget to get your promotions in front of eager shoppers on Amazon. 

Get creative

Equally as important as getting customers to your product is what they see when they get there. When it comes to Amazon, your goal should be to create a page that is highly convertible but also highly engaging.

This is where the creative prep comes in. It’s essential for brands to change up how they set up their product details page in order to help consumers feel an emotional connection to the products and further personalize the experience to make it worth their while. Creating immersive shopping experiences with Amazon Brand Stores and Custom Landing Pages can help maximize the ad spend that got a customer to your page in the first place by converting those visits to sales. 

Don’t forget about the storefront 

With Prime, Amazon has now given holiday shoppers the ability to be as last-minute as possible thanks to one-day delivery, but don’t let this be a deterrent. Review management company Womply recently found that in-store sales increase as major shopping holidays near, which proves that, in a world where the death of retail is nearly always impending, the storefront still matters a lot.

If experiences drive purchases, ensure your customers are getting the best of both worlds, offline and on. Extend and replicate the in-store shopping experience on social media, too, as a way to appeal to more audiences. Now that Instagram Stories is being used by 500 million people, you have an opportunity to give users a “window shopping” experience through stories just as they would enjoy in person. The more you can adjust your brand messaging on Instagram or Facebook to emulate the in-store experience, the more reach you will have. 

When it comes to major shopping holidays, there’s always a lot of noise to break through, but taking these tips into account will help position your brand for the most success on Amazon and beyond. 

Josh Kreitzer is CEO and Founder of Channel Bakers.

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