For years now, Amazon has been the world's largest marketplace and online retailer, connecting sellers to different buyers all over the world. Even with its widespread popularity, Amazon has its own setbacks and might not perfectly cater to all businesses. If you feel like your business is missing out on potential sales from other popular e-commerce platforms, it's time to think beyond Amazon.
There are several other platforms that offer unique benefits and opportunities for businesses to grow their sales. Here, we will dive deep into multichannel sales and how you can boost your sales on and off Amazon.
Why Multichannel Selling Is Important in 2023
As competition in the ecommerce space continues to grow, multichannel selling is becoming increasingly crucial. A multichannel strategy allows businesses to:
- Reach new customers
- Reduce reliance on a single sales channel
- Diversify their revenue streams
- Expose your brand to a wider audience
Moreover, it enables enterprises to build brand awareness and loyalty. In turn, this leads to a more robust customer base.
Growing Sales on Amazon
To maximize sales on Amazon, sellers need to increase visibility by ensuring they have quality listings—with all attributes (images, sizes, colors, etc.) accurately reflected. High-quality listing helps sellers reduce advertising spend, improve customer experience, and increase positive customer comments.
To enhance customer experience, businesses need to collect and respond to customer feedback. This feedback helps improve their products and increases the business's credibility on the Amazon platform.
Exploring Other Channels
Besides Amazon, Target Plus, Walmart, and eBay are other popular marketplaces businesses can use to reach a wider audience.
Walmart listing management
Walmart offers unique exposure to a different set of buyers through its advertising and increased visibility. The company has significantly improved its online shopping experience and aims to compete with Amazon for market share. Therefore, selling on Walmart can offer businesses brand exposure and access to a new customer base.
To manage Walmart listings and increase your returns, follow these key steps:
Step 1: Register as a seller
Start by creating a Walmart account.
Step 2: Create product listings
Creating product listings on multiple channels requires careful planning and scaling of operations to quickly ramp up revenue. Depending on the size of the catalog, this process can be a significant pain point for sellers. For instance, low-quality listings can lead to negative customer feedback and reduced sales.
Some product information you may need include:
- Product names
It's important to note that simply listing products and optimizing them for SEO is not enough. You need a more thoughtful and strategic approach to ensure success. As such, it's crucial to invest in tools that can automate the translation of product listings from one marketplace to another.
Step 3: Optimize your listings
Optimization for search visibility involves using relevant keywords in your product titles and descriptions. Sellers also need to ensure all product attributes, including those specific to Walmart, are accurately entered in order to improve visibility.
Step 4: Manage inventory
Managing inventory is not just about keeping track of your stock levels. It's essential for ensuring accurate orders, timely fulfillment, and preventing stockouts.
As you embark on a multichannel sales strategy, carefully consider how you will scale your operations to manage inventory effectively. For instance, delayed fulfillment or delivery errors can result in negative customer experiences, poor ratings, and even getting banned from the marketplace. Therefore, sellers need to prioritize implementing efficient inventory management systems and processes to prevent these issues from occurring.
Step 5: Monitor customer reviews
Regularly monitor customer reviews to address any issues or complaints and ensure available products meet their expectations.
Step 6: Analyze performance
Analyze sales data and performance metrics to identify areas of improvement.
Target Plus listing management
Target Plus is a highly selective and invitation-only marketplace for third-party retailers. This means that not all sellers can list their products on the Target website. The marketplace only accepts sellers with a brand that is doing at least a half million in online sales, have a strong presence, reflects diversity, and has a following on social media.
Sellers need to link with a Target partner to help them navigate the approval and onboarding process. Categories that tend to do well on Target Plus include pet products, babies/children, and home decor. Therefore, while Target Plus can be a great way for sellers to expand their reach and tap into Target's customer base, they need to meet certain criteria and work with a partner to successfully navigate the approval process.
eBay listing management
As one of the oldest marketplaces for ecommerce businesses, eBay listing management allows you to:
- Create and manage listings
- Perform-post sales tasks like printing shipping labels
- Track sales statuses
Using Amazon Sales to Engage With Customers Off-Platform
One of the key benefits of selling on Amazon is access to a large customer base. Businesses can use this large number of customers to drive sales and engagement on other channels. For instance, businesses can include inserts in Amazon packages to encourage customers to follow them on social media or sign up for their email list. They can also offer exclusive discounts or promotions to customers who purchase through their other channels.
Another strategy is to use Amazon sales to drive recurring or subscription sales through a different channel. For instance, a business could offer a subscription option for a product on Amazon but also offer the same product with additional benefits on their own website.
Managing a Multichannel Sales Strategy in 2023
Managing a multichannel sales strategy requires careful planning and organization. One key tool for managing a multichannel sales strategy is product listing automation software. Walmart listing software, Target Plus listing software, and eBay listing software can help businesses streamline their listing process and meet each platform's unique requirements.
It's important for sellers to select a solution that automates the translation of listings from one marketplace to another, as manually mapping attributes can be time-consuming and prone to errors. Businesses need a multichannel ecommerce platform like Zentail to not only manage product listing on all of these platforms but also on their website.
Some of the reasons to consider Zentail include:
- Real-time data and insights
- Shipping improvements
- System integrations
- Efficiency improvements
- Workflow automation
- Automated updating
Businesses need a management system that will allow them to log in and out of different platforms simultaneously. This saves time when listing products or managing orders.
Potential Restrictions on Selling Through Other Programs
While multichannel selling comes with many benefits, it also has some setbacks. Due to this, businesses need to be strategic and careful about the platforms they choose.
Some challenges and restrictions of multichannel selling include:
Monitoring and managing multiple platforms can be time-consuming if a business doesn't use proper systems. You can easily be overwhelmed when it comes to the day-to-day running of each of these platforms.
Each platform has its rules
Businesses should carefully review the policies of different platforms to ensure they comply. That's because each ecommerce platform has its rules concerning product listings.
With the rise of private label brands, competition on major platforms like Amazon, eBay, and Walmart has become fiercer. In order to stand out among other sellers, it's no longer enough to simply offer the lowest price.
Sellers have to differentiate their products and create their own brand identity. This includes providing a great customer experience, with attention to detail in areas such as product design, packaging, and customer service. Offering a unique and satisfying customer experience can help businesses stay ahead of their competitors on these marketplaces.
Some multichannel platforms charge variable fees based on a percentage of monthly sales, which can burden sellers as they scale their business. This means that as their sales increase, their fees will also increase, potentially eating into their profits.
Sellers need to carefully review the pricing models of multichannel platforms and look for ones that offer fixed rates to help them grow their Gross Merchandise Value (GMV) without incurring additional costs. By choosing a multichannel platform with a pricing model that aligns with their business goals, sellers can avoid being burdened with high fees as they grow their business.
The Bottom Line
A multichannel sales strategy allows ecommerce businesses to widen their audience while reducing dependence on a single sales platform. As such, businesses utilize marketplaces such as eBay, Walmart, and Target Plus in addition to Amazon.
More businesses should also leverage advertising tools, enhancing customer experience and engaging with customers off-platform to increase sales and build loyal customers off-platform. By following these strategies, businesses can grow their sales on and off Amazon in 2023 and beyond.
Zentail lets you enhance your product listing, inventory, and sales across multiple marketplaces. We help you streamline your business and make data-driven decisions to attract more customers.
Schedule time with a Zentail expert to see how we can transform your Ecommerce business.