How Selling On Amazon Can Keep Sales Coming In During COVID-19

How Selling On Amazon Can Keep Sales Coming In During COVID-19

How To Sell On Amazon

How Selling On Amazon Can Keep Sales Coming In During COVID-19

The New Normal

I’ve been connecting with clients and business associates who have thrived selling their CPG brands during COVID-19 and how selling on Amazon has allowed them to weather the storm and keep their doors open during COVID-19.

However, a lot of other businesses have not faired the same, if you are one of those businesses than keep reading.

A lot of retail business doors are now closed and for a lot of businesses, regardless of what happens with COVID-19, they will never open again and that’s very sad.

However, when another door closes another door opens, so they say.

I gingerly walked into into Save-On-Foods a few weeks ago with my wife Lorrie right after the initial announcement of businesses shutting down here in Canada.

I went to get some Walnuts for my wife’s steal cut oats recipe, a breakfast staple for us, and I noticed the “dry goods” section was completely tapped off.

I couldn’t get my walnuts.

I get it, open containers of dry goods accessible to the public may spread the Novel Coronavirus from infected to healthy shoppers.

However, I was pleasantly surprised and overwhelmed a few weeks later when Save-On-Foods opened up the dry goods section again because of their staffs innovative method to keep the dry goods germ and virus-free.

The staff, as you can see in this picture, cleverly put the dry goods into bags and now I enjoy Lorrie’s comforting and delicious steal cut oats recipe with walnuts again!

Innovative Businesses 

I just was overwhelmed by this tiny gesture of ingenuity and creativity from the staff at this grocery store to ensure that patrons can still access their dry goods.

This seemingly ubiquitous act, might not seem like much but it’s a good example of the type of innovation that’s required for businesses to stay alive during COVID-19.

According to Forbes.com’s article “20 Amazing Companies Founded During The Financial Crisis” some of the most well known companies that we know today started in the last financial crisis in 2008.

For example Joe Gebbia, Nathan Blecharczyk, and Brian Chesky founded Airbnb in 2008. 

The reality is boom and busts are were most opportunities lie.

Whatever the post COVID-19 economy looks like, i.e; the “new normal” as I’ve been hearing people calling it, there will be companies that die and those that thrive.

There will also be those that rise from the ashes of a global recession just like there was after World War 2 and the 2008 financial crisis.

What I do know during these confusing times is that there is a “new normal” and that’s all we can say for certain.

So, what kind of opportunities can you create from this weird and confusing place that we are in?

Shahzad Bhatti in his article on Forbes.com “How Your Small Business Can Survive The COVID-19 Pandemic” said that this new normal of COVID-19 is a “wake-up call to reconsider how you have been doing business.”

Just like my neighbourhood Save-On-Foods, that reconfigured the entire shopping experience for the safety of their patrons.

Bhatti, mentioned some questions that may want to ask yourself when thinking about how you can reconsider how you have been doing business and make your business “shockproof.”:

  1. Will your business model able to survive the changes that will come from the COVID-19 pandemic?

  2. How do you expect your customers to behave moving forward?

  3. What Will your new customers look like?

  4. ‘Revenge Spending’ Will See A Boost For Companies Already On Amazon

I will help you answer the above questions one-by-one by sharing stories and actionable insights from the trenches of the work that we’ve been doing and how selling on Amazon actually helped these brands increase their online retail sales during the COVID-19 crisis and how you can too. 

1. Will your business model able to survive the changes that will come from the COVID-19 pandemic?

Well, the simple answer to this question is to look at the “new normal” and the aftermath of a world after COVID-19, which is primarily going to be online driven! A lot of companies, have been selling on Amazon before COVID-19, and those were the brands that grew the most. 

Learn How Selling On Amazon Is Key To Your Business Model During COVID-19

For example, according to both P&G and L’Oreal they learned quickly how selling on Amazon and other online retail channels during COVID-19 gave them sharp growth in their e-commerce business, which grew about 35% and 52.6% respectively.

I also work with clients like Auromère who seen their revenues grow, just on Amazon, by 75% from January to June and in March even see a 116% increase in sales. 

How can you develop your E-commerce business on Amazon and create one that will survive all of the weirdness of COVID-19 retail mall shutdowns and shaken consumer trust?

It’s time to go digital and we all know this is the place to pivot now for your business.

“One of the key factors that are going to sink or swim businesses in this “new normal” while we are self isolating because of the global health crisis is to fully digitize your retail channels.”

COVID-19 has given us an opportunity to innovate and grow our online retail sales and even shockproof our businesses for future disasters that may affect brick-and-mortar retail sales by doing the following:

Present

  1. Focus on launching your brand or beefing up your Amazon product listings by driving your own online retail sales through Amazon.
  2. Educating or training your buyers and brand resellers on how selling on amazon can be a profitable way for them to resell your products through Amazon while their retail stores might be closed…
  3. Hire back staff that you might have laid off to help you launch your brand on Amazon to get sales and support their retraining as as a virtual employee as physical distancing is still in place…
  4. Work with consultants who are experts on Amazon to launch your brand and increase sales on Amazon…

A Year From Now

  1. Work on building traffic to your E-commerce website with paid traffic, social media marketing, and influencer content marketing to drive online retail sales for your brand…
  2. Hire dedicated staff to grow and manage your clean beauty brand on Amazon…

Digitizing Your Business.

Brands that we are currently working with in some cases, have actually increased their brand sales as I said. 

Just like Save-On-Foods, the clean beauty companies we’ve worked with during COVID-19 are making up for lost revenues by innovating and they are doing this by digitizing their retail channels.

2. How do you expect your customers to behave moving forward?

There’s the current state of things i.el; the “new normal” as I’ve seen quoted by CNN which for a retailer, or a brand or manufacturer that means that consumers are flocking online looking to buy your products.

How selling on Amazon can increase your sales is simply because consumers are behaving differently, they are apprehensive of stores and are going to continue to shop online. 

This means that you can:

1. work on your own online retail sales of your products, or…

2. educate buyers on how they can still sell your products during this time while their retail locations may be shut down.

1. Traffic Building 

I see a lot of brands looking to get online with a website and start building traffic, however, in the short term, this is a distribution problem while stores are closed.

A traffic building strategy for your own online retail sales on your website, if you haven’t been actively traffic building, or if you are just launching your website, is a multi-year strategy.

Not to say that you shouldn’t sell direct to consumer on your website as this is a wise play over the next 5 years. You should consider to continue building a long-term E-commerce strategy however Amazon can be a sales channel that you can quickly get up and running with returns within months. 

Long Term Online Retail Strategy

Traffic building to build up your own online retail site might be a 2-5 year strategy versus getting sales to replace revenues lost during the COVID-19 lockdown, as I mentioned. 

However, the fastest way to be where your customers are right now during this short-term distribution problem, “the new normal” is to get your product catalog on Amazon.

Let’s learn more how selling on Amazon is the key to weathering the storm of COVID-19, keep reading. 

Amazon is still prioritizing personal care or “essential goods” during COVID-19 as Amazon said…

“household staples, medical supplies, and other high-demand products coming into our fulfillment centers.”

A lot of the categories within the beauty and personal care industry are considered essential, so you might be in good shape.

Are Your Products Essential?

Tick check box #1 on the pandemic business survival check list which is “ensure your business sells essential goods that consumers need in disasters.”

Toilet paper is definitely high on that list for most Americans, however, I do think that we can run out of worse things such as food or medical supplies, which is a problem worldwide.

Educating Employees and Buyers 

Everyone is looking for new revenue models, and it’s hard to fit employees into the mix when stores have shut down and you’ve cut costs including laying off employees.

If you have already held on to your employees and you are looking for new revenue models its time to start educating key staff on helping with online retail sales but also focusing those efforts on helping your buyers as well. 

Running virtual training through Zoom is exploding now more than ever so setting up virtual training sessions for your buyers on how they can sell your products on Amazon is key. 

Consider bringing in guest speakers, or including staff who are Amazon sales experts into your Zoom calls to educate buyers on how selling on Amazon will be profitable for them. 

Building reliable, virtual buyers who are reselling your products on Amazon is the most quick and effective strategy to scaling revenue quickly on Amazon. 

However, if you are just starting to build your website sales, Amazon and specifically Amazon Advertising is an effective way to scale and grow your brand quick during the pandemic. Learn more about how you can your business through Amazon Advertising in our article here.

3. What will your new customers look like?

In the article “Could ‘Revenge Spending’ Help Retail Recover From Coronavirus?” by Jon Bird, writing for Forbes.com, he talked about the retail recovery of China after Covid-19…

“As the population starts to bounce back, so too is retail. While Apple is sending its store associates and Geniuses home in 21 countries, it has reopened its 42 locations in China. Apple CEO Tim Cook believes that things are getting under control.”

3. Access To Capital For Small Businesses During Coronavirus

Small businesses will have access to capital, for up to $2 million as part of the Economic Injury Disaster Loan Declaration For Small Businesses In US only.

Now is the time to re-think your retail brick-and-mortar channels and look at investing in online retail sales channels on the biggest online retailer, Amazon while you have funding that will allow you to pivot toward more online retail sales channels. 

4. ‘Revenge Spending’ Will See A Boost For Companies Already On Amazon

Cosmetics company Glossier is temporarily pulling the shades down on its locations after founder Emily Weiss read an opinion piece in The Atlantic entitled “Cancel Everything,”

a report by Coresight Research stated that 40% of U.S. respondents were already “avoiding or limiting visits to shopping centers/malls,” and if the situation worsened, that number would rise to 74.6%. (Spoiler alert: It worsened.)

According to the New York Times, in their article “See How All 50 States Are Reopening” they show the majority of states that now have retail locations open, so the tides are turning, however, a presence in online retail sales through Amaozn is still going to be crucial to increase consumer demand online. 

You can no longer, effectively sell through third-party sellers and retails in brick and mortar, you will need to diversify both direct to consumer sales on Amazon and through your own website.

COVID-19 is also at a crucial point of turning the tide on retail closures but if the second wave comes as predicted retail doors could shutdown once again, so now is the time to make sure you are good on Amazon.

Revenge spending will happen as retail stores open, however, to keep profits steady you will need to look to expand and how to sell Amazon. 

Conclusion

  1. Will your business model able to survive the changes that will come from the COVID-19 pandemic?

  2. How do you expect your customers to behave moving forward?

  3. What Will your new customers look like?

  4. ‘Revenge Spending’ Will See A Boost For Companies Already On Amazon

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