Amazon and Your Budget

We’ve all seen the articles flying around regarding Amazon moving to Australia and the potential impacts this behemoth will have on our sleepy little island.

From retail to home and commercial services, Amazon will be slowly building and taking market share off of a wide variety of businesses and the SME space is set to be impacted the most with potential for some operators to go to the wall.

It’s not all doom and gloom however with a lot of businesses set to profit and grow from becoming a part of the Amazon marketplace. How you decide to either battle or integrate with Amazon is up to you and ultimately, a mixture of both should create the optimal outcome.

Whether they end up being your friend or foe, it’s worth discussing how Amazon will win its new business from you and your clients in their first 12 months of operation.

How do you think this will roll out?

At the core of their growth and brand familiarisation in Australia will be its marketing. Amazon is incredibly well known in the US, but here it is arguable whether their full spectrum of services, products, solutions, lightning fast delivery and business membership are understood at all – especially at a consumer level.

As such, they will be forced to educate their future clientele by using all types of media to spread the word on what it is they can provide to consumers in every facet of their platform.

Can you imagine the TV ads, radio, the billboards, the full-page newspaper adverts, the magazine ads, tram stops, bus stops and all the push media in the world being shoved down our throats?

I can…it will be an almost instantaneous show of force and might when it comes to this avenue of brand awareness. They will be plastered all over different pieces of infrastructure and real estate across our major cities and towns.

Speaking of real estate, what about the highly competitive ‘square millimetre real estate’ on a search engine results page? More than the physical world itself, the local and national search advertising space is about to be overrun with a metaphorical ‘King Kong’ of budget and highly ranked content.

In the US currently, Amazon is found organically and in paid search results on practically every page of product-related searches. That is 4 – 6 lines of text in up to 3 different places on a SERP that push other companies, businesses and search results off of page one with ease.

Another ‘imagine this’ moment arises for us here; picture the Adwords results, Google Shop image and text, the organic rankings, the retargeting, the banner ads, the videos and the social content that Amazon will unleash over the months post-launch. You think it was hard to rank and outbid competitors in the past?

For some, this new player will cause many unwelcome repercussions in the marketing and advertising world and this is why I have written this article. It is time to start thinking about it and planning for the unavoidable impact.

Investigate, Research and Discuss:

So what can you do right now to understand the potential influence Amazon (if any – it’s not going to affect everyone) will have on your marketing KPI’s? Let’s have a look at a few ideas/steps you can take that colleagues and myself have come up with here:

  • Research your products and services against where Amazon will potentially be combative to your current spend. Know thy enemy and know thyself at the same time.
  • Learn how or where you could leverage off of Amazon’s advertising spend by becoming a part of their platform/marketplace as a product or service provider/member. Become a beneficiary of their budgets.
  • Consult with your agency, your SEO, your AdWords provider or your own marketing team as to what they are forecasting your business risk assessment to be.
  • Take note of current specific terms and spend related to CPC, CPM, SEO rankings and all other present-day data you can muster to be aware of what impact you have incurred post-Amazon launch. You can’t say you’ve been impacted if you are only guessing.
  • Look to upgrade your website, your eComm platform, your consignment contracts, your returns policy, your customer service charter and any of those ‘little jobs’ you’ve been putting off. Taking action now will reap the rewards before ‘King Kong’ starts to climb the SERP ladder.
  • Lock in bookings for key positions in your newspaper, magazine, radio, TV or billboard inventory as to take away the ability for Amazon (or anyone else) to compete with you. A better price for these could/would also be achieved.
  • Did you know Amazon has its own pay per click advertising for business on its platform? Again, if you can’t beat ‘em – join ‘em! Research best practice and methodologies behind advertising with Amazon to take advantage of their content and advertising as you will then be a beneficiary of all that traffic they generate.

Don’t overthink or in any way panic about Amazon’s impact – it is the smart operators who are prepared and get on the front foot early. You need to be aware of what could happen.

Happy to talk with anyone and brainstorm out other potential impacts you can identify or are concerned about.  Contact me directly matt@itconsultingcompany.com.au, or comment below.

Written by: Matt Kippin, Online Business, Systems & Product Expert @ ITCC

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