Being an Amazon seller has many advantages: you get to work for yourself, set your own hours, and (hopefully) make a lot of money on your own terms. Sure, there will be ups and downs along the way, you just need to anticipate and prepare for as many of them as you can. Two opportunities you should definitely be thinking about are Prime Day on July 9th and the Q4 holiday season (which typically starts on or near Black Friday). Planning ahead for these biannual shopping events will help you maximize your payday and set your business on a path for long-term growth.
To make sure you win big during events like these, follow our four-step guide below:
1. Create a timeline
Your first step is to create a list of all your to-do’s, which could include everything from checking stock levels to ordering inventory to optimize product price to launching marketing campaigns to auditing your competitors, etc. Once you have a full list, set specific deadlines and create calendar reminders so you don’t forget anything.
Regarding deadlines, Prime Day is July 9, 2018, but you should have everything set to go by July 1 if possible — especially since the July 4th holiday may cause delays or otherwise interfere with your suppliers’ timelines. For Q4, the holiday season really kicks off with Black Friday, but sales and promotions seem to start earlier and earlier every year. So, aim for your Q4 deadline to be early November to be safe.
2. Learn your numbers
A key step in planning for events like Prime Day and Q4 is to get an understanding of your numbers, including your sales velocity, your minimum viable stock level, and your reorder point. This will let you know how much inventory, at a minimum, to have on hand at any given time plus when and how much to reorder
Look at these numbers as they are now, but also pay attention to historical data to see where they were for Prime Day and Q4 2017 and earlier, depending on how long you’ve been an Amazon seller. If you have the history, calculate the growth between years to give you a sense of how much higher demand might be in 2018.
Pro Tip: The inventory reports in Seller Central should have some of these numbers already. If not, you may want to consider an inventory management tool to crunch the numbers for you (and monitor them on a regular basis).
3. Optimize your marketing strategy
Because competition will be at an all-time high during Prime Day and Q4, you should assess your marketing strategy to ensure that shoppers find and buy from your listings. Here are three ways to make that happen:
- Improve Amazon SEO: Do a quick audit of your chosen keywords to make sure they match what customers are actually using in their searches (and see how your keywords compare to your competitors).
- Launch a marketing campaign: Consider Amazon’s Sponsored Products to promote individual product listings or their Headline Search Ads to promote your whole storefront.
- Use social media: If you have active social media channels, make sure your followers know about your Prime Day and Q4 deals.
4. Increase Cash Flow
It goes without saying that you need cash to prepare for Prime Day and Q4. After all, you’re going to need to buy more inventory than you normally would, you may choose to invest in an Amazon ad campaign, and/or maybe you’ll outsource work like order fulfillment to a new employee or contractor. Whatever it is, do you have the extra cash to cover the necessary spending increase?
Chances are, Amazon’s two-week payment delay has left you in a cash flow crunch. Thankfully, Payability can help. Payability is designed for high-growth Amazon sellers like you who need daily access to cash. With daily cash, you’ll be able to reinvest in inventory and scale your business quickly. Next day payments also eliminate the risk of a pre or post-Prime Day stockout.
See how Payability helped one Amazon seller grow her business three-fold, then visit Payability.com to learn how we can help you make the most of Prime Day, Q4, and every day in between. To see how other sellers are thriving with the help of daily payments, search for Payability on Trustpilot, Web Retailer, and BBB. You can also find out about job opportunities at Payability including the Head of Customer Growth via the Payability Glassdoor.