What You Can Learn From Amazon To Power Your Online Store

Written By: Michelle Deery

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos was recently named one of the world’s richest men, overtaking Bill Gates. His store is the biggest eCommerce success story in history and it’s the yardstick against which all others are judged. Its shares hit $1,000 for the first ever time this year, and it recently purchased Whole Foods. 

Rather than be jealous of its success, instead see what you can learn from the online giant. While it’s unlikely that you’ll ever replicate what it’s done, you can use its tactics to boost profits and implement awesome growth for your online business.

It worked for Amazon. Why can’t it work for you?

In this article, we uncover what you can learn from Amazon to power your own online store. Starting with …

Obsess Over Metrics

Jeff Bezos started Amazon from the (relative) comfort of his garage. What set him apart from other early contenders was his obsession with metrics.

Metrics help us to measure how well our business is doing. We can check on them to find out what’s working and what isn’t. The more you know about your metrics, the more your online business can grow.

The thing is that a lot of people who claim to understand their metrics are usually only touching the surface. They check on things like the number of site visitors – but ignore other crucial-but-often-overlooked metrics, such as:

  • Keyword distribution – so important for driving traffic to your store
  • Revenue by traffic source – which sources do you need to work harder on?
  • Customer lifetime value – are customers ever coming back?
  • Email conversion rate – is your email marketing strategy working?

Understanding eCommerce metrics, analyzing and then using them will be a key part of your growth.

Personalization

Even Amazon’s biggest detractors would have a hard time arguing that Amazon doesn’t do personalization very well. Indeed, personalization is one of the online retail giants many strengths – and it’s still something that other store owners are ignoring. One-third of tier 1 online retailers admit that they just don’t back themselves when it comes to customer personalization.

Amazon has nailed it. After you’ve viewed a few products, you’ll see recommend ones pop up in a section called “Related to Items You’ve Viewed.”

This is personalization. Using AI, Amazon is able to track your habits and personalize your shopping experience so that you only see products that you might be inclined to buy. It works for the customer and the retailer.

Amazon, of course, has a bigger budget and can afford to get the best out of AI. But you can still check to see what add-ons your eCommerce platform offers. Also, setting up a “Recently Viewed Products” page is easy enough to do for even the smallest eCommerce store.

Make It Easy To Search

Another thing Amazon do so well is they make it easy for us to search and find a product.

Search is a metric that – like the ones I mentioned above – is often overlooked by online retailers. We’ll “get to it later,” is often said.

The search bar is super important and perhaps more key to your success than you realize right now. For example, is your search bar easy to find? Is it visible? Or do its colors merge with the background of your page, thereby rendering it hard to spot?

It’s all about making the user experience easy for the shopper, something which Amazon do so well. Simple tweaking the search box by inputting the text “Enter Keyword” can have a major effect on your search metrics. It guides your customer, making their buying process easier.

Manage Your Inventory Like A Pro

Just like an offline business, an online business has to keep a close eye on their inventory. If you don’t, you could either have too much stock and experience a cash flow problem – or you could have too little stock, which will leave your customers dissatisfied and look elsewhere.

Amazon knows the power of data collection tools when it comes to managing their inventory. It’s one of the reasons we all get our products just in time for Christmas! The good news is that you can use apps to stay on top of your inventory, too.

Shopify offers a few excellent inventory apps for eCommerce store owners just like you. One of my favorites is Product Kits, which lets you create product bundles while still keeping on top of your stock.

For example, when you bundle related products together to boost order value and profit – such as shaving cream with a razor – you might worry that you will lose track of your inventory. Product Kits removes this worry, updating our inventory automatically after each sale.

Where your customers are concerned, Product Kits makes it easier for them to find their size, as well as create the perfect “bundle” gift for Christmas.

Make The Most Of Product Reviews

Amazon has been plagued with fake reviews for years. After suing over 1,000 fake reviewers, the company now uses powerful AI to detect fake reviews and bumper “real reviews” to the top of a product page.

You don’t need to go this far, but it illustrates how important reviews are to Amazon.

When buyers see product reviews, it makes them more confident about your brand and the product itself. It also helps to foster trust.

If you’ve got glowing reviews, leverage them to boost conversions by making them visible. Put them on your landing page if possible, as opposed to only leaving them on your product page. Make the most of them. Customers love them!

These are a few tactics and strategies Amazon is using to boost their growth. It doesn’t matter how big or small your eCommerce store is, these tactics work for all of us. Be consistent with your metrics, personalize your site, manage your inventory and leverage your product reviews for a supercharged online store.

Author Bio: Michelle Deery is a freelance writer for Heroic Search in Tulsa. She loves helping businesses increase their sales by writing content that converts

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Andre Bourque (SocialMarketingFella) is Editor Emeritus of Technorati.

He covers emerging trends and news in social, mobile, cloud, and related technologies.

Based in San Francisco, he can be contacted via his social channels and at: andrefbourque@gmail.com

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