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Secrets to Q4 Success From an Award-Winning E-Commerce Seller

By Chen Melamed October 5, 2018
Secrets to Q4 Success From an Award-Winning E-Commerce Seller
Chen Melamed
About the Author

Chen is a copywriter at Feedvisor with her finger on the eCommerce pulse. She loves easy-to-chew creative content, good food and discovering hidden gems.

The critical holiday season is here and the opportunity to maximize your Q4 potential is huge. How you navigate through the holiday noise to tap into the anticipated revenue will largely depend on your business strategies. Whether it is through marketing, selling, or fulfilling during Q4, leveraging proven methodologies is fundamental for FBA, FBM, and SFP sellers.

We teamed up with multimillion-dollar seller Michael Ward to show you how to attain the highest level of profitable growth. Michael, who won the Inc. 500 award for owning the 140th fastest company in the U.S., attributes his holiday success to using best practices and strategic methods on Amazon. Here are Michael’s winning strategies for Q4:

1. Be Strategic With FBA

During peak times, Amazon’s warehouses are extremely busy and tend to get overcrowded. Amazon will charge sellers extra fees for any unwanted storage. To avoid paying long-term storage fees, begin sending merchandise as early as possible and after the 15th of the month. Inventory that has been in U.S. fulfillment centers for over 365 days on the inventory cleanup date incur a long-term storage fee of $6.90 per cubic foot. If you consider how many items are in your holiday catalog, the LTSF can run up to thousands of dollars or more.

Although you can sign in to Seller Central and use the Inventory Age and Inventory Health reports to identify which ASINs are subject to the long-term storage fees, an issue that many sellers grapple with is quantifying exactly how much they will be charged when the fees are evaluated by Amazon. Feedvisor has a custom LTSF report that illustrates precisely this.

2. Keep Inventory Moving

Inventory management is the key to nailing Q4. Due to the surge in demand, you can find yourself out of stock if you are not careful. Stocking up for Halloween, Black Friday, and Cyber Monday is pivotal. If any merchandise does not sell, you can try to recycle and resell that inventory the following year. To help create a sustainable inventory strategy, use your prior Q4 data and forecast the optimal stock levels for key dates during the holiday season.

3. Price Strategically

Avoid price wars with low-cost sellers, as they will run out of stock before the peak shopping days. For example, if your competition sells Halloween costumes at bottom prices during September, they might be raking in 5% more profit on that item. By October, they will sell out. Therefore, if you wait till mid-October to price competitively, then you can make 40% profit on that item and increase your chances of winning more Buy Box.

4. Use an AI-First Optimization and Intelligence Platform

When it comes to optimizing your inventory for Q4, you need a 360-degree view of your business, and that means arming yourself with business intelligence and operational data. Michael uses Feedvisor’s multi-level dashboards, custom, and financial reports for replenishment insights and to make more informed sourcing and stocking decisions.

Particularly during the holiday season, it will be business-critical to employ a solution that strives to predict how the hyper-competitive arena will evolve in the future and make more informed decisions based on these predictions. Since competition heightens during Q4, you can implement the best practices outlined to help you stand out, avoid price wars, and encourage a positive buying experience.

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