TAS 126 Competition Has KILLED My Margins – Now WHAT?

Welcome back to The Amazing Seller podcast. Scott’s excited (as usual) to bring you some actionable tips about how you can maximize your sales on the private label products you’re selling on Amazon. Today’s episode covers a problem that’s becoming more and more frequent for Amazon sellers. What is it? As the market become more and more crowded and others jump on the same bandwagon of products that you have, you’ll see pricing become one of the main differentiators motivating product sales. A price war has begun. Scott’s been experiencing that with his very first product and has been working to overcome the difficulties presented by it. But it’s not all bad news? Why? You’ll have to listen to hear Scott’s explanation so you can get the full gist of how he sees this difficulty as an opportunity.

Differentiation is an important thing when it comes to a price war.

One of the things Scott has discovered through a recent price war that has ensued in one of his product categories is this: The more unique and attractive your product is, in ways that are different from the competition, the more likely you’ll be to demand the price you need and want because buyers will be more willing to purchase it because of its uniqueness. That could have to do with either product design or packaging and Scott’s the first to say that since the product in question was his first product, he didn’t pay attention to those issues as much as he should have. But he’s glad he didn’t. That sounds like a strange thing to say… but Scott’s got a great reason for saying it that you can hear on this episode of The Amazing Seller.

A great tactic for a product with slipping profit margins.

When was the last time you went to the grocery store? Have you paid attention to the coupons that print out when you are at the register? They’re discounts based on what you purchased that are designed to lure you back into the store to buy that product again at a discount. Why would they offer you an opportunity to buy the same product for less? Because they’re betting that when you do come back into their store you’ll buy more than just that one product. They’re willing to give up some income on one product for the probability that they can get you to buy more when you make that purchase. Today Scott’s going to suggest that products that begin to lose their profit margin can be used in the same way. How do you go about it? Scott’s got some great ideas that he’s eager to share with you on this episode, so make sure you listen.

Bundling could come to the rescue of a lower profit margin.

Scott always believes there’s a way to continue benefitting from the hard work he’s put in, in the past – and he wants you to think the same way. If your product used to bring in lots of cash but is slipping because of competition, you can’t give up! You’d be bailing out on all that hard work. One of the things you can do is to look over the “also bought” listings that show when you view the product in question and consider creating new products to bundle with it based on those results. THAT is a great idea that Scott unpacks for you on this episode and it could be the very thing to save your product’s usefulness and keep your business rolling along just as it always has. Find out more about how to make those bundles happen on this episode.

If your product is being undercut by a price war see if you can create a variation.

Products that have variations – such as color, size, features, etc. – provide the buyer an additional opportunity from your company that they wouldn’t have otherwise. You want to make sure that you’ve got every hook in the water you can have, and a variation on your current product could be a masterful way for you to gain attention you’re losing to competitors who are undercutting your price. It’s one example of finding a way to offer something that your competition doesn’t and to do it in a way they can’t. It’s about differentiation and you can do it to keep your products selling. Scott’s got more ideas about how to go about it on this episode!

OUTLINE OF THIS INTERVIEW EPISODE OF THE AMAZING SELLER

  • [0:05] Welcome and introduction to this great episode.
  • [1:10] A TAS community member’s comment that Scott is excited to read because it pertains to this episode.
  • [4:41] Your invitation to be part of the TAS Facebook group.
  • [6:20] How Scott got into a pricing war with one of his products and how it has impacted his sales and positioning.
  • [13:08] Lessons learned from this experience so far – good and bad.
  • [17:02] How to continue to use a product that is part of a pricing war.
  • [18:02] Including an Amazon coupon on his lead-in (cheaper) product to use it as a lead magnet to introduce your other products.
  • [20:57] Feed an external promotion to another product through the price war product.
  • [22:01] Create other related products.
  • [22:29] Use the “frequently bought together” possibilities to brainstorm relevant bundles involving that product.
  • [23:40] Add a variation product to add to the price war product.
  • [28:04] Why you can’t let this sort of thing keep you from taking action.
  • [28:15] The usefulness of an authority website to feature your products.
  • [30:44] Recapping your options when a price war hits.

LINKS MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE

Scott’s free workshop  – https://www.TheAmazingSeller.com/workshop

www.TheAmazingSeller.com/FB – the TAS Facebook Community

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15 comments
  • Can you please expand on Parent-Child listings on Amazon? From the podcast, I am given the impression that this is a single listing which can have multiple buying options, ex:
    Option 1: Product A – $14.99
    Option 2: Product B – $9.99
    Option 3: Product A+B – $19.99

    Please clarify and let me know if I am way off base here – thanks!

  • Hi Scott -another suggestion for you if you are having trouble with your margins. I know you prefer to use express shipping as it’s faster and removes a layer of cost (due to slowness and therefore larger orders that would be needed) and complexity to your business, but desperate times call for desperate measures. Why not consider using sea shipments? If it squeezes an extra dollar of efficiency out of your margins it might be worth it. Just a thought.

  • Hi Scott, just created a child variation product today but products are still a few weeks away from arriving at Amz. Found that the new child product has exactly similar fields as the other child product where I can fill up with lots of relevant information. Will I benefit from utilizing the keywords section of new child listing with additional keywords to help optimise my listing better? Thanks again.

  • Hi Scott,

    Thanks for the great info in all your episodes! I’ve finally got samples and ready to place my 1st order of 500 units. I’m shipping them directly to my house as you recommended then to AMZ. My question is how do I label these items for AMZ? This will be a PL product not currently on AMZ, do I need to buy UPC codes from another website and put on every poly bag for them to scan? Only part that is holding me up, much appreciated!

    Thanks

    • Hey Mike, you could have your UPC (or FNSKU) printed directly on the product by the manufacturer. If you run a quick search for “cheap UPCS” you should be able to find what you need to get started there. Once you have the number, you can use it to build your Amazon listing (and get your FNSKU). If you want to keep things easy, have your manufacturer print the UPC on the package and let Amazon label the units (about $0.20 per unit). If you want to save a little money, once you’ve created your listing you can take the FNSKU and send it to your manufacturer. Have them print that on the package and you’ll have your items labeled exactly the way Amazon likes them!

      • Scott I can’t thank you enough this was my one speed bump! Once I buy the UPC’s on eBay do I need the actual UPC stickers or just the # for the manufacturer? If I have the manufacturer print the FNSKU do I not need the UPC as well?

        Thanks again!!

        • All you would need is the number and your manufacturer should be able to generate the barcode for you. If you are opting to use the FNSKU you wouldn’t need them to print the UPC as well. For products headed to Amazon, it’s one or the other!

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