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SellerExpress.com

All-In-One Marketplace Manager

 

As eBay continues to undergo their dramatic transformation, many sellers have started flocking towards Amazon to increase their sales. To make the process easier and less uncomplicated, SellerExpress has created an all-in-one marketplace manager capable of doing just about everything for you! For the last ten years SellerExpress has been providing the latest and greatest software solutions for some of the largest multi-channel retailers in the world. With a complete inventory management, order fulfillment, and auto-pricing program, SellerExpress.com is your one-stop shop for selling successfully and conveniently on Amazon.

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MonsoonCommerce.com

What Does your Ecommerce Business Need?

Whether it’s a small start-up business or million dollar company, merchants are continuously looking for new and efficient ways of increasing sales. From new marketplaces to integrated selling tools, business owners are now turning to technology and software for answers. With over 20,000 customers and 2500 online merchants experiencing success, Monsoon Commerce has become the #1 ecommerce solutions provider for online sellers and merchants. They provide business intelligence and insight so merchants can grow their business efficiently and successfully.

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Understanding Different Types of Repricing Software

Online merchants have been using repricing software for the last couple years to price and sell their products faster. No matter what marketplace you sell on, merchants have been using different types of repricing software. Depending on the needs and requirements you as the seller have, there are a variety of different types of repricing software available to merchants. Not all repricing software is equal, and many are created with special features and functions in mind. To find the right software for you, we take a look into 3 different types of repricing software and how each one functions to better help you.

Amazon Lowest Price

Although this isn’t a software service you purchase, Amazon’s lowest price essentially gives you a repricing guideline. When you first list an item on Amazon they’ll notify you of the current price that item is being listed at. You can either charge more or less. Most sellers undercut this price by a few cents in hopes of attracting buyers to their product. However, Amazon’s lowest price will not monitor prices and alert you when your competitor has lowered their price. This is the basic reprising functionality Amazon offers for sellers.

Pros: It’s free.

Cons: It doesn’t offer nearly anything comparable that other RePricing software and isn’t automated. Essentially, you are required to manually monitor and reprice every listing you have, no matter how many items you list.

Automatic

Automatic repricing is like the grandparents of auto-pricing– It’s been around forever! This very simple and helpful tool enables users to reprice their listings automatically without ever touching their account. Set it and forget it. Although you run the risk of driving your profits straight into the ground for the sake of a purchase, you do, however, gain valuable customer feedback and ratings for your storefront. If properly used, automatic repricing can be a very valuable tool.

Pros: The advantages of using automatic repricing is the buy box. With automatic repricing you have a faster chance of winning the buy box because this software will lower your listing price more.

Cons: The only drawback of using automatic repricing software is entering your product into a price war. What’s a price war you ask? Basically, it’s where every seller listing that product under cuts their price to beat out their competition. The conclusion to price wars? You lose money.

Intelligent

The basis of intelligent repricing is easy— Keep prices low enough to win the buy box, but high enough to gain a profit.  Intelligent repricing has become the go-to software of late because it not only automatically extracts your competitor’s pricing, but it puts you in a position to keep your margins. It differs from automatic repricing because it doesn’t just automatically lower every time your competitor does, but instead lower the price just enoughto earn you a profit, while keeping you in the running for the buy box. Intelligent repricing is using certain pricing strategies to win and retain the Amazon BuyBox at the highest possible price.

Pros: The biggest plus to using Intelligent repricing is keeping profits high, while still competing for the lowest price to win the sale.

Cons: The biggest drawback to this service depends on the provider, as most intelligent repricing software companies charge a profit percentage rather than a monthly fee. Sure, you won the sale but your profit is going right back to the provider.

Dynamic Amazon Repricing – The Need to Embrace Variable Profit Margins

As an Amazon retailer, what should my target profit margins be? Should I be aiming for keystone retail margins on Amazon? Should I be setting prices to make the same profit margin on all of my products?

As any successful retailer in any market knows, performance is all about profit
margins – How much are you taking home after the customers have paid you for the goods? This bottom line question must be addressed to execute a successful merchandising strategy on Amazon. In this article, I will explain how Amazon retailers should recognize the shift of commodity trading at the core of their business and need to be focused on dynamic pricing to be successful.

In the world of e-commerce, where retailers have the potential of addressing very large demand from potentially millions of Amazon’s customers with low cost, optimally adjusting prices to match demand can have a tremendous return for even smaller retailers. In fact, in a commoditized market where customers focus on price and speed and cost of delivery, size truly doesn’t matter – Amazon enables any retailer to compete for the same customers as the likes of Best Buy, Toys-R-Us, or Macy’s.

As more vendors seize the online opportunity on Amazon, competition increases and as the basic laws of economics dictates, prices tend to decline. Unlike a traditional brick-and-mortar retail scenario, consumer demand is not limited by foot traffic and product pricing is not rigid. E-commerce retailers need to set prices fluidly often several times a day to be competitive on a national or global scale. It’s purer supply and demand economics – competition and efficient supply means many products are commoditized, a retailer who has the lowest price for a hot product on a marketplace shopping site such as Amazon may capture hundreds of sales for a single item. Pricing optimally can mean thousands of even millions of dollars a year from a single product.

The Amazon opportunity and its economics are revolutionizing retail. With only the cost of commission paid only when a customer purchases, any retailer can offer virtually any product to the world’s largest customer base. With extremely low barriers to entry, Amazon’s simple formula works, the Amazon ecosystem provides the customers and transaction platform whilst the retailer provides the commodity.

So, now you’re marketing your products on Amazon to millions of potential customers only to find you’re competing against a dozen people doing the exact same thing with the same products. Should you lower your prices?

With any rational customer naturally purchasing from the lowest priced merchant – the question relating to pricing is ‘How Low Should I Go?’

When selling on Amazon solving the puzzle of dynamic pricing and variable profit margins really matter. If I try and sell everything at a 50% Gross Margin, I might be missing a hundreds of sales as another retailer is will to go down to 40%. Should I go down to 40% too, or perhaps 20% of even 10%. After all, 10% Gross Margin from a $100 product selling 50 units a day is a far better for the bottom line than a $10 product selling at 50% Gross Margin selling 1 unit per day.

A savvy Amazon trader would recognize this opportunity and adapt rapidly. At Teikametrics we help clients with this process, we call this ‘Floor Analysis’. By analyzing the lowest Gross Margin thresholds, a.k.a. ‘the floor’s for each product, a vendor can balance volume versus margin. This is the key exercise required with the configuration of a successful Amazon Repricing strategy.

The end result is many variable margin sales which are aggregated to create one combined bottom line profit average across the catalog. This is a portfolio approach similar to an active trader of public stocks and shares. Individual stocks are traded at different velocities but performance is measured based on overall portfolio returns.

As technology evolves and marketplaces like Amazon become more competitive it’s the adaptive and dynamic retailers that will survive – a new approach to pricing is necessary and those who fail to recognize this will be left behind as the nimble and intelligent companies embrace the opportunity.

 

About Alasdair McLean-Foreman

As the Chief Executive Officer, Alasdair is responsible for Teikametrics’ overall business strategy and day-to-day operations. Alasdair founded an e-commerce company in his dorm-room which grew into a multi-million dollar company selling high-end sporting goods. He also founded the weight loss and fitness company Traineo and has built and provided e-commerce solutions to large organizations including Newscorp, The Times of London, L’Oreal, and The New York Marathon.

Alasdair earned a Bachelor of Arts in Economics at Harvard University where he was captain of the Track and Field Team and a member of the Great Britain and England national track teams.

Repricing Evolved

Anyone who sells online knows that eCommerce is an evolving industry. It’s rapid evolution is brought on by improved retail channels and an increase in buyers adopting mobile tools like smartphones and tablets. These devices make purchasing online easier then ever before and as a result online sales have skyrocketed. According to U.S. Online Retail Forecast, consumers purchased $202 billion dollars worth of merchandise online in 2011, a number that increased to $226 billion in the first three quarters of 2012. The same study estimates that online purchasing will increase 62 percent by the year 2016 bringing the total amount of online purchasing to $327 billion.

Why top retailers choose Teikametrics for Professional Amazon Repricing

The Amazon Repricing Problem

Automation is the use of technology to optimize productivity in the delivery of services or products. If correctly executed, automation can offer a business a distinct competitive advantage but if poorly executed, it can damage a businesses ability to output a consistent level of service. In the case of Amazon repricing technology, precise execution is key.

Amazon repricing software automates a process that would be virtually impossible to execute with human labor – but are all Amazon repricing tools offering the same level of execution?

In 2003, I was invited by Amazon to be one of the first retailers to list sporting goods as a third-party seller on their marketplace platform. As our Amazon sales grew steadily to over several million dollars per year, our team used many third-party repricing tools to attempt to optimize and improve our sales. Naturally, we Googled the terms ‘Amazon Repricing Tools’ and ‘Amazon Repricing Software’ and tested all of the solutions available.

What our team noticed was that even repricing solutions provided by ‘leading companies’ charging significant fees did not always reprice our products correctly. Our Amazon repricing data frequently showed missing data, delayed repricing runs, missing/incorrect shipping prices, or in some cases, our products were even changed to the wrong prices.

Differences in Amazon Repricing Technology

After our e-commerce business was acquired, we decided to launch Teikametrics to address the problem to help other merchants. With an investment we set out to build a software team to execute our mission of providing the best Amazon repricing software.

Why aren’t all Amazon repricing tools able to provide accurate results?

The simple answer is that is the task of consistently capturing data from Amazon is not trivial and presents a significant challenge for automated software. Amazon repricing software can only be as accurate as the data it is able to capture and here lies the issue. Unfortunately, Amazon does not make the task of sampling pricing information, competitive merchant’s prices, and other inputs required to reprice accurately, an easy task. This has been the source of frustration for many third-party tools including those providing Amazon repricing services.

Amazon repricing services uses different techniques to capture pricing information and is a reason why performance can vary between providers. The techniques used to sample Amazon data include:

Through extensive research, our development team learned techniques using Screen-Scraping have serious limitations and importantly is prohibited by Amazon’s strict terms of service. We were surprised to learn that some of the largest providers of third-party seller tools were relying on data from Screen-Scraping to capture prices. The inaccuracy issues that we had experienced as a seller and the inconsistencies between repricing services made complete sense after learning that Screen-Scraping is used by a large number of Amazon repricing services.

Screen-Scraping, like any automated process, experiences an error-rate which in a high volume retail scenario can have critical negative consequences. The Screen-Scraping process relies on the ability of the process to capture data in a fashion that mimics thousands of individual web browser requests. If for some reason a request fails and pricing data is not correctly captured, there is no way for the repricing tool to be able make any changes.

In recent months our research and development team has identified changes by Amazon that will render all Screen-Scraping techniques obsolete. If you’re a seller using a Screen-Scraping based Amazon repricing techniques you are almost certainly experiencing major issues since these changes have been put in place.

Amazon’s own API, called Amazon MWS, also has limitations. Due to the size of Amazon’s vast database which handles petabytes of data across the globe, services querying product data using the Amazon API also experience an error rate. What do these error rates mean for Amazon repricing services? In short, if there is no process or error-correction detection in place to handle data sampling errors they will not reprice products correctly. For high volume sellers, these errors and product miss-pricing adjustments can result in thousands of dollars of lost revenue.

Teikametrics’ Data-Driven Approach

Our goal at Teikametrics is to provide the best Amazon repricing service and our development team has put in thousands of hours to test, re-test, build, and release multiple iterations of our software. Through this data-driven process, clients using Teikametrics are able to experience an Amazon repricing service with a level of accuracy that is superior in terms of accuracy and performance to other solutions available.

Our Amazon repricing software dynamically identifies Amazon API inconsistencies, reacts, and adjusts to optimize the adjustment of all products. In addition, we’ve developed proprietary adjustment techniques to dynamically search for missing data to provide the most complete data set to execute price updates.

The resulting performance is why some of the largest retailers in the Amazon marketplace choose Teikametrics technology to accurately manage and reprice their products.

If you have any questions regarding Amazon repricing accuracy or if you would like our software team to review your current repricing solution for errors, please get in touch with us and a Teikametrics Amazon expert will be happy to help you through the process and provide a risk-free demo of our solution.

Hack Price Monitoring with IFTTT and ScraperWiki

WisePricer–At WisePricer, we’re always trying to develop new ways to help online merchants stay ahead of their competition. Today, I want to share a way to keep track of Amazon’s prices for multiple products. I’ll be mashing up ScraperWiki and IFTTT to show you how to setup a daily “Price Monitoring” email delivered straight to your inbox.

In addition to this tactic, the combination of these two tools offers you endless possibilities for price monitoring. Later, I will share some of these ideas which you can implement yourself (and share with others in the comments section below!)

The Players
ScraperWiki is a platform that allows you to make data do things. It is a platform for writing and scheduling screen scrapers, and for storing the data they generate. ScraperWiki is useful for both for programmers who want to write screen scrapers with less fuss, and for journalists, activists and the general public who want to discover and reuse interesting data.

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Amazon Analytics

The Newest Platform for Amazon Sellers

As an Amazon seller imagine being able to easily track the number of daily visitors, the most popular listings, and even track inventory from the touch of a button. The purpose of Amazon Analytics is to create a better marketplace for Amazon sellers by providing information never before accessible. Find out how Amazon Analytics can benefit you and why it’s quickly becoming the hottest platform for sellers on Amazon. Learn why some visitors buy from you and others don’t — Adjust your marketing programs to meet your business goals and start profiting from Amazon Analytics.

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