Your product is slowly crawling its way up the seemingly endless ranks. But as you refine your e-commerce marketing tactics it's clear that something’s not quite right—your store’s performance doesn’t match your goals.
Building your Amazon conversion rate can be a frustratingly slow process, but what if we told you there are 3 cross-promotional tips for selling on Amazon you can use today to increase cart values and boost your sales immediately? It might sound too good to be true, but you can accomplish a lot by:
- Learning from your competitors
- Understanding what cross-promotion is
- Adjusting your presentation
Learning from Competitors
If you want to increase your Amazon conversion rate, it’s critical to study and understand the space you are in. That space includes 3 components:
- The competition
- The shopper
- And you!
Studying the competition can be done in a few ways. Let’s take a look at 1 non-technical approach: A simple visual review of your high-performing competitor’s listings.
- Find products to study. Bookmark the products you review in your browser for later reference.
- Take off your marketing cap and put on your consumer cap. Absorb each listing naturally and ask yourself if the listing:
- Excites you
- Falls flat
- Inspires brand confidence
- Makes you want to click away
- Dig a little deeper and look for patterns:
- Any common keywords between listing titles?
- Is information presented in easy-to-digest bits?
- What’s the photography like?
- Is there any commonality between the listings in terms of tone or lingo?
- Don’t expect to find all the answers on your 1st try. This approach is old school, and you’ll need finely honed instincts to leverage it to the max.
Let’s take a look and briefly compare 2 competing colored pencil brands, Crayola and Castle Art Supplies.
Both of these brands are respected, highly rated, and have lots of engagement in the questions and review sections. You might think Crayola’s apparent higher performance justifies trying less, but the fact is they’ve been a household name for over 100 years, and simply don’t need to try as hard (and they know it). Castle Art Supplies is less known, and has to do a lot more to grab attention without that name recognition.
If you were a colored pencil seller trying to make a name for your brand, trying to compete with Crayola isn’t worth much effort. If you imitate their approach to listings, you won’t be able to compete against Castle Art Supplies. If you can hold your own against Castle Art Supplies, you might just take sales from them and Crayola. But if you really want to siphon off of their sales, you should do the thing they both failed to do—cross promote! That helps turn a small victory into a bigger one by increasing cart value.
What Is Cross-Promotion?
The term “cross-promotion” is often used as a loose shorthand for 3 distinct approaches. In adjusting your eCommerce marketing tactics, you might do any of the following:
- Upsell: This is the classic (and often hated) “Would you like to supersize that?” approach. When done poorly, it can seem tacky and presumptuous. When done well, you can catch the buyer with their wallet and mind open to purchasing more than originally intended.
- Downsell: This approach tends to be reactive, such as when a car salesperson finds out you can’t afford the sports car, so they try to sell you on the modest sedan instead. You can leverage this mechanic in Product Comparison Chart Modules in A+/EBC Content by showing the shopper a range of price/feature options. It can also be a valuable approach as part of campaigns that address and try to convert abandoned carts.
- Cross-sell: Amazon, Ebay, and brick-and-mortar department stores all live for the cross-sell. You go in search of 1 thing, and realize while you’re there that you also need this, and that, and ooh that would pair nicely with…
- A combined approach: No sales approach or marketing strategy has ever, or will ever, achieve 100% conversion. If you want to dominate on Amazon, you’ll want to be familiar with all of these basic “cross-promotional” strategies and assemble a multi-pronged plan to maximize conversions.
So what would a comprehensive, 3-pronged combo approach look like?
Let’s say you’re selling a product that’s competing in an oversaturated market. Your product might not be very unique, but you’ve differentiated your brand identity pretty well and you shine on customer service. Now it’s time to strategically amplify your Amazon conversion rate.
Step 1: Upsell
- When possible, set up Amazon Bundles. This could be sets of distinct products, or they could be discounted bundles that encourage buying 1 product in multiples.
- The Subscribe and Save function is kind of like a bundle. If you commit to buying more, you can get a small discount. This is a great option for consumables.
- Promote the rest of your product line. If you don’t tell the customer you have more exciting things to give them, there’s a really good chance a shopper will visit your listing and leave without figuring it out for themselves.
- If you have access to A+/EBC listing features, set up a Product Comparison Chart Module.
- Create a brand lineup photo to close out your product image stack at the top of your listing.
- Mention your product line in the bullets by saying something like “Check out our full line…”
Step 2: Downsell
All the strategies mentioned above work for downselling also! Raise visibility on your whole brand—if they don’t want to drop their cash on the current listing, they might be more willing to buy a lower-priced product.
Step 3: Cross-Sell
On Amazon, this one is pretty simple. Have multiple contrasting or complementary products available and make it obvious they exist. One of the most powerful ways to do this is to set up an Amazon Storefront. Having your own brand page with all your products organized as you see fit can help you stand out as an established brand, appear higher in search results, and sell more to buyers whose trust you’ve earned.
Basic 3-Prong Plan Summary:
- Upsell with Amazon Bundles and recurring purchase subscriptions, and by building awareness of the full depth and breadth of your brand’s product catalog.
- Downsell by presenting alternative products with lower price points. Be mindful of the buyer’s priorities and present an alternate purchase that fits their needs.
- Cross-sell by expanding your presence and visibility. Add products to your catalog, register your brand with Amazon and set up a cool storefront, and add elements to your listing that promote products from your other listings.
- Bonus points for setting up a PPC campaign and owning the ad space on your own listings. This can be tricky and expensive, but when done right can get competitors out of your space, keeping the focus on your brand. We recommend seeking out a PPC expert to help with this specialized marketing campaign type.
3 Actionable Steps for Cross-Promotional Success
Don’t worry about rethinking your Amazon listing optimization as a whole—with just 3 easy adjustments you can substantially boost visibility for the rest of your brand.
- The Photo Stack: Save your final photo slot for cross-promotional purposes. Put together a simple lineup photo with a snappy caption to show the shopper just how much more you have to offer. Not only does this have the potential to lead to further sales, it can increase the likelihood of landing this sale by making you look more established.
- This example double dips by showcasing all the product colors available, as well as 8 case-use photos to help the shopper justify buying in multiples.
- The Bullets and/or Product Description: Keep the focus on the product at hand, but look for opportunities to mention the full range of your brand. At MxEm, we sometimes mention other products in a brand’s line while showcasing a company’s credibility and customer service practices. For example:
- The Example Co. Experience – Count on us to deliver exemplary examples for all your explanatory needs. Check out our full line of clarifying products and get all your points across and understood!
- A+/EBC Content (or take it to the next level with Premium A+ Content!): In our experience, the 2 best modules for cross promotion are the 1st and the last.
- For your Module 1, it can be real snappy to upload not just your company logo, but an image module showing several of your products with your logo superimposed. Doing this doesn’t just declare who you are, but showcases more of what you actually do.
- For your final Module, assemble a Product Comparison Chart. Depending on what all you have in your catalog and your typical shopper’s buying intent, set this chart up to highlight different variations of your product or fairly similar products (to help them find the right thing), or put together a set of complementary products (to help them build a set). The key is to anticipate needs.
Products that complement each other as part of a kit
Products that have more subtle differences
The best way to elevate your Amazon conversion rate is to become your customer’s best friend, and one of the best ways to do this is to cross-promote. This works whether you’re an established brand with a global presence or just starting out with an Amazon FBA private label. Anticipate your customer’s needs, present real solutions with real value, and foster a genuine, mutually beneficial relationship. Become your customer’s favorite brand to get them to advocate for your brand, hype you up in reviews, tell all their friends, and post on social media about how your product suite has changed their life.
Have a growing catalog and feel overwhelmed or unsure how to leverage opportunities for cross-promotion? Contact us for a Free Listing Analysis and we can give you feedback for things to improve (be sure to mention this blog if you’d like us to focus on cross-promotion specifically!).