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Amazon Holiday Prep Series: 5 Last-Minute Tips to Win During Cyber Week
Stay on top of the latest e-commerce and marketplace trends.
The Amazon holiday prep series will run throughout Q4, as well as the weeks leading up to and following the peak selling season. It will focus on relevant e-commerce holiday news, as well as actionable strategies you can implement to achieve your sales goals and carry momentum into the new year.
According to a holiday survey from RetailMeNot, 58% of consumers will not complete an online purchase without free shipping while holiday shopping. Enter: Amazon. The company has expanded its fast and free delivery options for the holiday season by offering one-day delivery on over 10 million products.
Besides ensuring that your entire catalog is Prime-eligible, what other steps can you take to drive sales from Thanksgiving to Cyber Monday and beyond? We have included five helpful tips below.
1. Monitor your KPIs and account health daily.
A staggering 73% of Amazon sellers make up to half of their total annual sales on Black Friday or Cyber Monday. Given the immense weight that these holidays carry, you should check on your customer metrics regularly. Monitor your account health so you can identify any blind spots and resolve any operational issues in a timely fashion.
Excessive order defect rates (which are impacted by negative feedback and A-Z Guarantee claims) can lead to account suspensions and even closures, so monitoring these alongside metrics such as average daily orders, average daily sales, and profit margins can help you maintain a holistic view of your business during a peak sales period.
2. Make sure your campaigns are running prior to Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
Last year, the number of days between Thanksgiving and Christmas was 33. This year, that number drops to 27. With fewer days in the holiday shopping season, it is ever-important to start running your campaigns and promotions earlier and budget accordingly.
Launching your campaigns at least two weeks before key moments in time with a minimum $100 budget will give you time to monitor performance and make any critical, last-minute adjustments. Additionally, be sure to analyze your week-over-week advertising performance and identify any poorly performing campaigns in need of optimization throughout the holiday season.
3. Solicit reviews and have a plan in place to monitor top-performing products for bad reviews.
Driving reviews during the lead-up to Black Friday and Cyber Monday will help your product visibility as well as your conversion rate. Providing a seamless end-to-end consumer experience will help promote positive reviews from buyers.
Moreover, 79% of consumers go to Amazon to check reviews prior to making a purchase, so you should constantly monitor your reviews to ensure customers do not abandon their potential purchase and buy from a competitor due to a negative review on your listing.
4. Leverage data to optimize performance before, during, and after the “Cyber Five.”
Using data to your advantage will help you mitigate the risk of running out of stock during Cyber Week. You can use last year’s holiday sales data and your Prime Day performance data to help forecast this year’s sales and inform your Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals. During those five days, you can utilize data to remain agile and ensure your strategy is more proactive than reactive, monitoring sales and traffic metrics to identify any inventory adjustments.
Lastly, you can use data to perform a post-mortem analysis once the year is over. What were your product sales this holiday season versus last? Did your advertising sales improve? Which day in the “Cyber Five” produced the best results for your Amazon store?
You can look back on the days from Thanksgiving to Cyber Monday to draw out specific insights and sales data, but you should also look at the entire fourth quarter in a comprehensive snapshot to fully understand any consumer trends or shifts that took place and impacted demand, are relevant to your catalog, and require action on your end.
5. Ensure your prices are optimized.
According to RetailMeNot, 70% of consumers say price is the biggest determining factor in the gifts they purchase during the holiday season. Be sure to do a final review of your pricing on a SKU-specific level, making adjustments wherever necessary. Look at your pre-defined floor prices and consider lowering them to be more aggressive for peak season.
If the prices are unrealistically high, the products may not sell. With items that make sense to liquidate, be prepared to go down to competitive floor prices to sell through stagnant inventory. The heightened state of competition during Q4 is quite significant, so you need to analyze your pricing for each product, particularly top performers, to see what last-minute changes need to be made to improve sales velocity through the end of the year.
Black Friday has repeatedly produced record sales days for Amazon, with the online shopping event no longer just one isolated day but rather an indicator of the beginning of a major five-day selling period that ends on Cyber Monday.
During last year’s “Cyber Five,” Amazon sold more than 180 million products and more than 1 billion products shipped free in the U.S. throughout the holiday season. Leveraging these relevant tips will help you capture incremental revenue and profits and enable improved performance of your entire catalog during these critical sales days.