If you are a seller and you haven't thought of integrating Shopify with Amazon, then most experts will probably tell you that you are missing out a great deal. To some extent, the statement may be right. But hold on, not so fast; looking at it from a broader perspective, I think Amazon has its fair share of disadvantages for any business that is looking forward to building its own brand.
Look, the truth is that Amazon has no interest whatsoever in helping a seller build his or her business, even if they advertise. Just like you, all they care about is building their own brand and having a firm grip on the marketplace.
One advantage Amazon has is that they have gained millions of buyers' trust; which is a good thing- I mean they deserve it since it was not an overnight success.
The backbone to this is that buyers:
- Use reviews from other verified purchasers to assess sellers and throw out the bad ones.
- Believe the marketplace will put things right for them if they ever go wrong.
From a buyer's view, Amazon could tweak an operational change that can completely throw your business off the table. For example, you could be selling batteries, and they decide to strike a partnership with a battery retailer and do away with all 3rd party soap listings.
Do you get the point?
Now, what if Amazon decided to ban the sale of the item you are striving so hard to sell? You'll be instantly out of business! Why would you want to invest in and building a company that doesn't care about your own? If you disappeared the next day, they wouldn't even notice, but if they go, you are doomed. I don't call that partnership, it's a volcano waiting to erupt. That’s why I believe a successful seller must think of integrating Shopify with Amazon.
The only good thing I'd point out from Amazon is that they give you instant traffic. However, at the same time, they also prevent you from building traffic, which is your most valuable asset as a seller.
Did you know that;
- There are many tactics you can use on your own website that Amazon won't allow you to?
- There are some products you can only sell on your own website?
- You can compete Amazon? (if you are ready to put in the effort)
If you aspire to be successful in selling, then this post might well be the game-changer for you. Hopefully, in the end, you will realise that connecting Shopify with Amazon is way more useful than relying on Amazon alone.
In the beginning, your direct traffic will be just but a small percentage of overall traffic. It's depressing, and that's alright. You may even be forced to pay for most of your traffic. After some effort, hard work and patience, you will start to earn a following. At this point, it will be quite stimulating when prospects remember your website name!
Speaking from research and experience, I have come to realise these crucial points about integrating Shopify with Amazon or on starting your own selling website;
1. Product Flexibility (no restrictions on product posts)
One advantage of running your own website is that nobody can restrict you. You get to control literally everything that goes online. For example, you have total control on how many photos to upload, image size/ quality, terms and conditions of sale etc. This is impossible when it comes to selling on Amazon simply because the warehouse cannot handle all that. There is no freedom for personalisation here.
Imagine you wanted to post a video alongside the product listing to help sell your product. You can't do that with Amazon!
When it comes to selling on Amazon, you must play by their rules.
To add on, policy changes, which may not be in line with your interests, can be induced at any time. Such a move can only mean you accommodate the policy, or you will lose your ability to sell.
2. Buyers See You As A Legit Seller
The marketplace is all about who offers the lowest price for an item. There is no other factor that can be used to explain buyers' behaviour. When dealing with these large web stores, you have to be within 10% of the lowest price of a given item; otherwise, you don't get a look in.
This results in you working with little pay, sometimes even earning below minimum wage. However, on your own website, you have all the freedom concerning branding. You can also charge more than Amazon and eBay just because you look more legit and a lot more professional, rather than someone who seems to be selling from a spare room in their house.
Unless you really want to compete, don't just fix your mind on selling on the marketplaces. If you're going to go big and make it in E-commerce, then I advise you to start learning how to connect Shopify with Amazon right now.
It's step number one!
3. You Can Compete With Amazon
It may sound a joke but Yes! It's possible. You can work your way up the top and compete the bigwigs like Amazon. At some point, if you plan to expand your selling, it only gets better if you at least have a site with a basic setup. In the beginning, you could have the start-up site function as a database for product information and images. With time as you evolve, you will appreciate that you made that move.
Besides, whatever eBay and Amazon sell are not too farfetched. You can equally sell these products on your own site as well. In fact, you escape the restrictions that the big boys place on sellers like you. For example, you wouldn't be able to sell electronic cigarettes on eBay. You are your only limit as to what you can sell or not.
4. You Can Be Your Own Boss
When you rely entirely on Amazon/ eBay, you are in constant fear being shut down. Bad feedback scares the crap out of you every single day. Even when it's not entirely your fault, Amazon can just decide to shut you down following a few cynical from buyers. It can be very stressful, not until you realise it doesn't have to be. The only way you can escape such worries and still sell is by creating your own website.
With your own website, a customer can rant about the most stupid things, without you having to worry about the effects of their rants on your business. Besides, you can choose to pull down their useless complaints such that other customers don't see any unfair negative comments.
Who will ever shut your website down because of that one negative customer review anyway? Try that on Amazon and tell me how it goes...
5. Avoid scammer buyers
If you are a seller on Amazon, then you must have interacted with a scam buyer, claiming "Item Not Received". It's quite easy for scam buyers to claim so and get away with it because Amazon often leans on their side during dispute resolution. It's ridiculous! Sickening! Some even threaten you with negative feedback. When you sell on your website, scam buyers are the least of your worries.
Similarly, there are plenty of buyers who also don't trust sites like Amazon due to the high number of scam transactions on such websites.
Most people who regularly buy on eBay or on Amazon will have been ripped off at least once. You can take advantage of them and have them as your esteemed clients. In short, false claims can be a thorn in your flesh when selling on Amazon. It shouldn't be the case.
To this point, one thing you should take away is that you need to invest in your own web property and build your personal brand, something that is built to last. Don't wait, start now!
Starting your own website is not an overnight success. It is a long term project, unlike selling on Amazon. However, after only a few years, you will reap bountifully. I can compare Amazon to a drug that promises immediate sales but can be taken away abruptly, leaving you confused and helpless.
The marketplaces are fantastic for the exposure; however, the freedom that comes from running your own web store brings eternal joy.
If you are ambitious enough in building something that will last, leave Amazon and co behind. You should start thinking about integrating Shopify with Amazon today.
There, now you have it! Work towards it!