This year Father’s Day will take place on Sunday, June 20, 2021. Father’s Day (FD) orders would have started trickling in since the beginning of the year, but they’re about to start ramping up in a dramatic way. In order to fully capitalize, brands need to start rolling out account updates right now.
Every Amazon retail event requires synchronization across all aspects of an ecommerce business – are there any holes in your FD strategy?
The Bobsled team has provided some tips below about how they will be preparing their clients for FD 2021. Let’s start with Ivana Kosovac’s best practices around operations, customer service, brand protection, and organic marketing.
- Check the prior year’s total units sold a couple of weeks before FD to determine what amount of inventory you will need to have on hand to prevent loss of sales at the height of the FD sales period.
- Ensure you have plenty of inventory available at least 2 weeks in advance of the holiday, ideally around the beginning of June. Allow more time if you are doing FBA, as Amazon often has backlogs and inventory processing can be delayed. Review your previous FBA shipments and see how many days it takes from shipping out the inventory to it being received and available for purchase with FBA.
- Using FBM (Fulfilled by Merchant) fulfillment is a great backup plan in case your FBA inventory gets delayed or lost. Check and tweak your FBM shipping settings to ensure that you can satisfy all orders that may come in.
Here is more information about Bobsled’s recommended
inventory management strategies.
- Be more diligent with your customer messages than usual if you are using FBM. Around retail holidays we see an increased number of messages that are on the topic of expedited shipping, as people order last-minute gifts and need them to arrive before FD.
- You may also notice a slightly increased number of gift return requests after FD. Keep track of your return requests and provide a prepaid return shipping label for a smooth customer experience
- Review your seller feedback and reviews to identify potential patterns that exist with negative customer experiences, find ways to improve. In some instances negative feedback will fall outside of Amazon’s guidelines – in these situations, you can appeal and Amazon will remove the feedback in question
- If you are not using a post-purchase email sequence (PPES) already, consider implementing one prior to FD as it can help simplify customer service in a big way
- Make sure you’re winning the Buy Box with Prime-eligible products over competing offers. If you are the only one that is selling your product on Amazon, you may still experience a Buy Box loss if the same product is available for a lower price off Amazon. Prior to FD be sure to review your Brand Dashboard and Featured Offer on the Pricing Dashboard
- Similarly, many brands selling on Amazon run into headaches with Amazon Warehouse Deals, which have the potential to impact your FD revenue. Learn more about how to combat these deals by checking out the following article – How To Stop Amazon Warehouse Deals
- Be sure to review your product pages to make sure there are no issues such as missing images, bullet points, or clunky descriptions. You want to clearly communicate as much about each product as possible, and review if variations are correct, especially if a parent product has different sizes or colors
- Check on your traffic and conversion levels for each ASIN. You may notice some listings perform better than others, so this is your cue to figure out how to increase conversion. When you identify keywords that are missing find a way to intelligent add them to your product page
- Also add FD-focused keywords in the backend order to rank higher for holiday-specific search results, i.e. father’s day gift ideas, gifts for men, etc
Swap out your storefront banner with a ‘themed’ one by using the ‘Storefront versions’ feature. With this tool, you can set the end date for immediately after Father’s day so you don’t have to make any further adjustments.
Instead, you could also just add a Storefront tile with FD-themed content (i.e. product action shots with FD relevant products, lifestyle pics of a father playing with children). This is an easy win because many brands have already developed this type of imagery for their FD email and social media campaigns. Don’t forget to link your photo tile to the product that you are promoting.
Please make sure to review Amazon’s Storefront content guidelines as including any wording that directly mentions a sale or % off language can be rejected.
Also, depending on your product range, you may wish to add a Storefront subpage titled Father’s Day that includes all of your products that could conceivably be purchased as an FD gift. This may be as simple as adding the ASINs to a product grid so it’s easier for customers to find.
Finally, Amazon recently launched a new beta feature called ‘Manage Your Customer Engagement’ which allows brands to target Amazon shoppers that have elected to follow your brand via your storefront with email campaigns.
This tool (and Amazon Posts) could give you an advantage over the competition on FD, learn more – Amazon Manage Your Customer Engagement Tool – A Sneak Peek Of The Beta Program.
- If you are updating your images and content, you may also want to refresh your A+ content with the holiday-specific product action shots.
- If you have several versions of a similar product, consider using the comparison grid module which is an excellent tool to display more of your products on the same PDP.
- Call out any features of your product that makes it an ideal gift, i.e. your packaging is ready-to-gift
- Make sure that you are implementing promotions to increase conversion! Coupons and simple percent off are the classics that are the most visible on the PDPs and search results, however, depending on the type of product you sell, you may want to consider a BOGO promotion which is often implemented for beauty products and cooking supplies. Learn more – Which Amazon Promotions Work Best?
- If your products are eligible, consider applying for Amazon Subscription Boxes as they are a great gift idea for FD
Thanks, Ivana! Now Brad Kempfer will share his best practices surrounding Amazon PPC and DSP.
Firstly, it’s important to recognize that the vast majority of FD-related shopping will end on the date where presents ordered will be Prime delivered prior to June 20. Therefore June 14 – 17 will be the most important dates in terms of high FD shopper traffic. There will of course be a bit of FD traffic after these dates to account for shoppers willing to pay extra for expedited delivery, but June 14 – 17 is the most important window from a PPC perspective.
Tweak your PPC strategy ahead of Father’s Day, starting four weeks prior by doing the following:
- Look at the historical performance (if available) around FD 2020 and identify which products are applicable
- Launch individual campaigns for the identified products, utilizing known high-performing keywords as well as FD related keywords (these will work best if separated into individual campaigns)
- Create Sponsored Brand campaigns with headlines mentioning FD (must be launched at least four weeks prior)
- Boost budget for the identified products on both the new campaigns and campaigns where they exist (prior to FD)
- Track performance leading up to FD – make optimizations one week prior and in the days leading up to FD
- Ensure that bids are set correctly
- Ensure that you have the correct keywords in place
- Ensure you are not running out of budget or will not run out of budget on that day
Tweak your DSP strategy ahead of FD, starting four weeks prior by doing the following:
- Look at the historical performance (if available) for FD 2020 and identify which products are applicable
- Identify the most relevant segments from historical (and current) campaigns associated with your products
- Run overlap report to see the segments that can be utilized in tandem with the identified segments
- Search for existing in-market / lifestyle segments relevant to FD
- Create custom and lookalike audiences
- Link to a custom landing page that showcases the products you want to promote on FD
- Create custom images and videos that mention FD and the specific products you will be promoting
- Utilize a full-funnel approach in the weeks leading up to FD to identify the shoppers most likely to engage with applicable products. You can boost awareness of your brand and products starting with upper-funnel targeting and moving lower in the funnel the closer you get to FD
- If possible, create a pixel the weeks leading up to FD to generate an audience to retarget
- Utilize all the available campaign structures (Display, Mobile, OTT) in setting up specific FD campaigns
- Track performance leading up to FD – make optimizations one week prior and the days leading up to June 14 -17.
- Increase your bids in the few days leading up to this window
- You can also increase frequency caps on specific targeting strategies to increase the visibility of your ads and re-engage shoppers
- Increase daily budget caps to ensure you will not exceed them with the increase of spend on the biggest days of FD spending
- After FD it’s important to analyze the performance of the products and different strategies applied to learn what worked and what didn’t work so you have applicable insights for the next similar retail holiday!
If you want more info about how to harness DSP check out – What Is Amazon DSP and How Can It Boost Sales?
Note: paid traffic going to products with active promotions is going to see better conversion, so for optimal results, be sure to align your PPC and DSP strategies with your organic marketing efforts.
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