As the economy weighs in on the impact of the pandemic, Amazon has started to fill an important role and conversation point with brands as customers adjust habits to comply with social distancing. Throughout April and most of May, Amazon made unprecedented moves by removing deals and focusing on essential goods in its supply chain. Now as the retailer catches up from a demand surge tied to the outbreak, Amazon has started to lift restrictions on the amount of inventory that suppliers can send in. Programs like Born to Run (BTR), along with deals and coupons, have been enabled for suppliers as everyone tries to get back to business as usual.
Long delivery times have begun to erode the Amazon brand reputation among its Prime members, and a company that was known for great selection and low prices saw cracks in the armor, disappointing customers with widespread out of stocks and higher prices than usual. Social distancing has changed customers’ views of ecommerce, but it’s also shown Amazon’s hand as brands adjust to new guidelines and restrictions given by the retailer. To adjust to these changes, there are a few things brands can do to safeguard their business against future restrictions:
- Direct to Consumer Shipments – A hybrid approach with Amazon allowing brands to ship direct to consumers if the retailer’s inventory becomes unavailable. This is the #1 focus all brands should be thinking about in their relationship with Amazon. This can be done through both the Seller and Vendor Central channels.
- Revisit Advertising Budgets – Shifts to important dates like Prime Day have called out to everyone that budgets finalized early in the year should be adjusted due to increased traffic and market share opportunities outside of Q4.
- Content Refresh – Many brands have had to change strategies due to operational shutdowns and changing business demand. Tana teams have been hard at work for these clients updating pages and walking the store to refresh content for our clients with increased traffic on the Amazon website.
Brands continue to see unprecedented change in ecommerce consumer habits, and now more than ever have a need to make sure they have a clear vision on their Amazon strategy. As everyone continues to learn how this pandemic will effect the ecommerce marketplace long term, our push to all of our clients is to make sure to leverage all avenues of the Amazon platform as new customers are coming online viewing products for the first time.