Using Amazon to test international ecommerce opportunities
Before you spend money on setting up international versions of your websites, translating all of your copy and product descriptions, you need to be sure that your product is viable and will sell in your target markets. Ideally, you should test this in a low risk environment, in a way that means you have very little to lose if your product isn’t as successful as you might like. You might choose to translate and launch a single piece of content marketing, choosing to push one product through your site, or launching a social media campaign. Or, you could use Amazon (or another equivalent marketplace) as a low risk platform to measure your product’s viability in a certain market.
Amazon is a great environment to test the success of your products for a number of reasons:
Low Risk of Brand Contamination
Selling your product on Amazon means there is little danger of brand contamination if your product is not successful in your target country. Whereas a marketing or social media campaign clearly identifies the product with your name, Amazon doesn’t have to.
Easy Feedback Mechanisms
It’s easy to track what’s working on Amazon, and a whole range of analytics tools can help you to quickly tailor your shop. Doing it this way enables you to focus on the product presentation, the text and the descriptions first, before you worry about all the other variables like your own site’s layout and structure. This let’s you know for sure that your products are presented and described correctly for your target buyers really early on. Amazon’s customer review tool also makes it easy to gauge how your international customers feel about your products. It is in these reviews that buyers tend to be most honest, allowing you to gain an accurate idea of what your international buyers like or dislike about your product.
Information is Easily Modified
Amazon allows for quick and simple modifications you might need to make. Whether this is to a product name, description or price, you can adjust anything according to feedback you learn along the way.
Easy Site Integration
When you are happy that your product is successful in your target market, it is easy to withdraw it from Amazon and integrate it back to your own ecommerce website. Equally, you can continue to sell the product on Amazon as well as on your own site, if you want to.
Facilitates Breaking Difficult Markets
As a result of Amazon’s global appeal, it is the perfect tool for breaking into international markets that are otherwise difficult to enter. This is certainly the case for Germany and Japan, where Amazon is incredibly popular, as a result of the Japanese market’s preference for “cash on delivery” payment methods and Germany’s generally low confidence in ecommerce sites. Amazon offers both buyers and sellers in this country confidence and security that might not exist otherwise.
Though Amazon is an incredibly useful tool for testing an international market, there are some things you need to consider before using it:
Keyword Research- In order that your product is found among your competitors on Amazon, it is vital that you conduct some keyword research in your target market. This information will tell you what people are searching for and how you can appear in their searches. Your language agency should be able to help with that. If not, Integro Languages certainly can.
Investigating Amazon Auto-Complete Listings- Once again, for people to choose your product, they need to know it’s there. When you start typing anything into Amazon, it starts suggesting what it thinks you want. Knowing and using those auto-complete terms in your translations will give you a real boost! Integro can help you get these right, encouraging more people to click and view your product.
Cart Testing- If you do decide to remove your product from Amazon in favour of selling directly from your site, it is important that you thoroughly test your own site’s shopping cart. If customers can’t buy as easily from your site as they could on Amazon, they will turn to your competitors.
Taking the step to sell your product internationally is risky and, to avoid wasting your time and money, you should only make the move when you are sure of your product’s potential success in that market. At Integro we can help you to use Amazon, or any other relevant online marketplaces, to test the viability of your product in an international market, and to boost your company’s international success.