Diversify Your Ecommerce Revenue Streams Weekly Loop #10

 

Weekly Loop #10

Diversify Your Ecommerce Revenue Streams

 

Many online sellers have run into problems with Amazon, or another marketplace, suddenly changing the rules and causing detrimental harm to the bottom line. Whether it’s a sudden suspension, a significant change in fees, or any other from a list of problems with selling on marketplaces, your business’ health is at risk when most of the sales are from a single marketplace.

A single marketplace may bring hundreds, or even thousands of buyers, but they aren’t your customers when you can’t reach out to them. Nearly all of those buyers picked your product because it looked good on the marketplace – an excellent listing, great feedback, detailed pictures – but wouldn’t seek out your brand if it weren’t there. And if somethings goes wrong and your listing suddenly isn’t at the top, there’s no way to reach out to them. Likewise with a new version, add-on, or complementary product.

The best brands give customers a reason to come looking for them. They may sell on big marketplace sites. However, it’s in addition to their own standalone shop and they are pushing their brand first and foremost. If something goes wrong with a marketplace, or even a big retailer, the whole business isn’t at stake.

Building a successful standalone shop isn’t easy, and it should be approached with a long-term perspective. It doesn’t have to be the only channel, but should be part of every ecommerce brand’s strategy.

GoodsLoop

Take a look at an excellent standalone ecommerce shop – and get an idea for your own shop

Allbirds makes sustainable shoes with a simple athletic aesthetic for men, women, and kids. Upon visiting their site, the heading of “Natural Comfort…now there’s a bright idea” goes a long way to giving insight to brand’s focus on sustainability, comfort, and bright colors.

The brand primarily focuses on how the shoes are extremely comfortable. With a meta tag of “the world’s most comfortable shoe,” it’s clear they foremost want to help their customers by providing a more comforable shoe.

In the 2nd secion of the page, they mention how they have worked to replace “industry standard petroleum-based outsole” with a sustainable sugarcane based outsole, giving them a second unique selling proposition.

The menu along the top makes it easy to navigate and clear that they offer shoes for men, women, and kids, all build on the same brand ethos. After a few images showing happy people wearing the shoes, the bottom of the page includes logos on a number of reputable sites, giving the relatively unknown brand a lot of creditbilty among new customer.

The about us page is stellar, citing their inspiration for starting the company as a New Zealander teaming up with a sustainable engineer to figure out how to use wool, abundant in NZ, to produce shoes. They set out to solve a problem and have stayed tie to their mission.

Unsurprisingly, Allbirds’ packaging is recycled and ships in the actual shoebox, rather than inside another box with air bubbles, as most shoes seem to ship.

It’s an impressive site, and an impressive brand that’s worth emulating.

Recommended Links

 

Each week, we read and watch articles, blog posts, videos, infographics, books and more related to ecommerce. We share some of our favorites links on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.

In our weekly updates, we pare the links down to our favorite seven links from the past week.

Have a suggestion of something to include? Get in touch.

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“Does your audience understand who you are, what you do/sell and why it matters to them in five seconds or less?

8 Reasons Why Your Website Sucks & What To Do About It
Gabe Sappenfield ROI Online An Internet Marketing Agency

“Your tagline should be displayed prominently at the top of your homepage. It should be a simple and clear, but a compelling one to two sentence description of what you do.”1

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“Amazon has since been on something of a charm offensive in response to those PR headaches.”

Bernie Sanders’ problem with Amazon
Brian Heater eCommerce – TechCrunch

““We know that the median salary for Amazon employees is about $28,000,” the Senator told TechCrunch. “And about half the workers who work for Amazon make less than $28,000 a year.”
2

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“Rather than ordering the shirts online, they’ll be more inclined to use your services if you both belong to the same local group”

How to Promote Your Local Business with These 15 Marketing Strategies
Neil Patel Quick Sprout

“Let’s say you own a local t-shirt company.
Another local business may be hosting an event in town and need custom shirts made. Rather than ordering the shirts online, they’ll be more inclined to use your services if you both belong to the same local group.
That’s the whole idea behind joining. The businesses look out for one another and always try to support local brands.”3

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“It takes a year until you might have an idea of what you’re doing”

Product Licensing Lessons from an Entrepreneur with 22 Years in the Game
Felix Thea Shopify Blog – Company

“Some of the good advantages to it, number one, it opens doors. You have association with major brands, whether it’s going to be Star Wars with Disney or Marvel, whether it’s the NFL or NBA. If you have a partnership, there’s established business that people are buying that type of product. See, there’s already a consumer base that knows it, and it opens the door. As my old boss used to say when people used to talk about marketing, when you pay those leagues, that’s sort of the marketing in itself, because you’re using recognizable brands to build your business. It works really well. There are a lot of challenges to being in the license business. It’s not easy at all. You’re also a steward for those people’s brands. It’s a big responsibility, but it’s a good way to turbocharge a business if you have a unique idea, because it opens doors right off the bat.”4

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“The New Food Economy reports nearly one in three Amazon employees… were on food stamps.”

Data from states shows thousands of Amazon employees are on food stamps (AMZN)
dgreen@businessinsider.com (Dennis Green) Business Insider

“That’s according to data obtained by nonprofit New Food Economy from state governments in the US. New Food was able to get data from five states: Arizona, Kansas, Ohio, Washington, and Pennsylvania.
The New Food Economy reports nearly one in three Amazon employees — 1,800 people — in Arizona were on food stamps or lived with someone who was in 2017. In Pennsylvania, one in 10 Amazon employees — more than 1,000 — were on food stamps.
A separate study by Policy Matters Ohio published in January found that 700 Amazon workers in the state received food stamp benefits.”5

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“The accounts…are paid by Amazon to serve as friendly faced representatives for the company’s occasionally controversial fulfillment centers.”

Amazon is paying employees to tweet nice things about its warehouses
AJ Dellinger Digital Trends

“While the accounts aren’t automated according to Amazon, it’s easy to understand why one would mistake them as such. They all share the same basic structure. They use the “Amazon smile” logo as their background image; have the similar biography details that include their job position, which Amazon warehouse they work at, and how many years they have been at the company; and they all include a link to the Amazon warehouse tour service. The accounts also all include “FC Ambassador” in their name.
The ambassadors appear to scour Twitter for negative comments about Amazon’s warehouses and counter the commentary with some positive spin. The accounts often highlight what they call “competitive wages” offered by Amazon, as well as benefits provided by the company. They also talk up the conditions of the warehouses in attempts to counter any narrative that suggests they are unpleasant or uncomfortable to work in.”6

“The company will now curate its own storefront, in addition to operating its own separate site.”

Moosejaw is the first of Walmart’s acquired brands to open a digital store on the site
Sarah Perez eCommerce – TechCrunch

“However, the store itself is not being branded as “Moosejaw” because Walmart plans to expand the assortment over time to pull in products from other speciality retailers and brands in the future. That means Moosejaw will fulfill much, but not all, of the orders placed in the new online shop.
The online storefront will also feature Walmart.com’s new design, which offers a more modern and clean look-and-feel, and other personalization features.
In its quest to challenge Amazon, Walmart’s speciality retailer buying spree last year allowed it to bring in small, but tactically important brands targeting upscale shoppers and millennials.. But it was unclear if Walmart planned to allow them to run independently forever, or try to bring them onto Walmart.com – or both. In the case of Moosejaw, at least, the latter is true.”7

“One of the biggest frustrations that sellers have with Seller Central is the data it offers. Because very often, the data you want is just not available.”

8 Ways Amazon Seller Central Drives Sellers Crazy
Alex Knight Ecommerce In Depth

“For example, let’s say that you are trying to improve your listings. You can’t get data on average session time or view counts for additional images and videos included in your listings. This means that you don’t really get a good picture of how your listings are performing, which makes it very hard to know what to improve. You are left to experiment blindly.”8

“How do you find the right tools and deploy them for maximum efficiency?”

From Retail to e-Tail: How to Launch an Ecommerce Website for Your Brick-and-Mortar
Kaleigh Moore The BigCommerce Blog

“There are 3 major pieces to this approach:

Laying the groundwork with pre-launch preparation.
Optimizing your store.
Marketing your store.

In this guide, we’ll look at each of these parts in detail, and you’ll learn how to transform your existing physical store into an online shop—all while exploring various marketing strategies that keep customers coming back again and again.”9

  1. https://www.getroionline.com/blog/how-to-design-a-website-that-doesnt-suck-in-8-simple-steps
  2. https://techcrunch.com/2018/08/28/bernie-sanders-problem-with-amazon/
  3. https://www.quicksprout.com/2018/08/27/how-to-promote-your-local-business-with-these-15-marketing-strategies/
  4. https://www.shopify.com/blogs/blog/uncanncy-brands-licensing
  5. https://www.businessinsider.com/amazon-employees-on-food-stamps-2018-8?utm_source=feedly&utm_medium=referral
  6. https://www.digitaltrends.com/home/amazon-paying-people-to-tweet-about-warehouse-working-conditions/
  7. https://techcrunch.com/2018/08/27/moosejaw-is-the-first-of-walmarts-acquired-brands-to-open-a-digital-store-on-the-site/
  8. https://www.webretailer.com/lean-commerce/amazon-seller-central/
  9. https://www.bigcommerce.com/blog/brick-and-mortar/
  10. Photo by Headway on Unsplash

Andrew @ EcomLoop
Are you looking to start or grow a standalone ecommerce shop? I help independent businesses achieve success on the Shopify and WooCommerce platforms. As the owner of multiple ecommerce businesses, I've had the opportunity to get experience with nearly every aspect of the ecommerce industry. I started EcomLoop to help other quality independent businesses using my knowledge and experience. To stay on top of new ecommerce developments, I publish The EcomLoop Weekly Loop, a blog and email newsletter with original thoughts and curated links to help independent businesses improve their businesses.