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The dangers of losing your brand to Amazon

For many businesses, Amazon’s marketplace represents a land of opportunity: a vast pool of potential customers and a streamlined fulfillment system. However, for brands that rely heavily on their own websites and haven’t considered the long-term implications, venturing into Amazon can be a double-edged sword. Here’s why:

Cannibalizing Your Brand’s Search Power:

One of the biggest risks is the potential to cannibalize your brand’s search engine presence. When customers search for your brand directly, you want them landing on your website, not Amazon. However, by opening an Amazon seller account, you introduce a powerful competitor for those search terms. Amazon often dominates search results, pushing your website further down the page, resulting in a significant decline in website traffic and potential sales.

Look at it like this: It’s the start of the year and your business is booming, you’re no.1, no.2 in Google search results and you don’t sell on Amazon. Your revenue is £100,000 a month. (Just an example!)

Now, fast forward to Q3 of the same year and your businesses is now selling on Amazon as well.

Great right?

Maybe… Maybe not. Check your search results, check your traffic, check your sales…

What’s happened? For many businesses, Amazon has taken your traffic away. When people look for your brand, they no longer find you at the top of the search results, they find Amazon and a link to your product. GREAT! It’s your product… But hold on… That customer is now inside of Amazons ecosystem – people have short attention spans and want quick results, thus why they went to Amazon in the first place rather than to your website, because it sat at the top of the search results. That and people trust brands they know… Amazon. (even though they looked you up!)

So where’s the problem? The problem is the Amazon eco system. That customer is now very easily tempted by your competitors product listings because they’re £0.50p cheaper than yours… POOF! They’re gone. People like to pay less, it’s just that simple. Maybe Amazon has a similar product on Prime with next day delivery? Maybe there’s an Amazon only product that has Prime and a cheaper price, who knows? If you wasn’t on Amazon as a seller, your customer wouldn’t have gone there and discovered any of this! Lets move on…

Losing Control of Your Brand Narrative:

On your website, you control the customer experience. You curate product descriptions, craft compelling visuals, and build brand loyalty. On Amazon, you relinquish some of that control. Product listings can be cluttered with competing sellers offering different prices and potentially lower quality products. This inconsistency can dilute your brand message and confuse customers.

Amazon Owns the Customer Data (and Maybe Soon, Your Market):

Every interaction on Amazon feeds its powerful data machine. This data allows Amazon to understand customer preferences and buying habits. The danger? Amazon could leverage this data to develop private-label products that directly compete with yours. Even worse, if you become overly reliant on Amazon sales and decide to pull out later, regaining control of your brand and search ranking can be an uphill battle.

So, How Do You Avoid This Brand Erosion?

The key is a multi-channel strategy. Here are some steps you can take:

  • Invest in SEO: 
    Optimize your website content and build backlinks to ensure your website continues to rank high in search results, even when competing with Amazon.
  • Build a Strong Brand Identity: 
    Develop a strong brand voice and visual identity that resonates with your target audience. This consistency will help customers recognize and trust your brand, regardless of where they encounter it.
  • Diversify Your Sales Channels: 
    Don’t put all your eggs in one basket. Explore other online marketplaces and consider establishing a strong presence on social media platforms.

By taking a proactive approach, you can leverage the power of Amazon while protecting your brand and ensuring its long-term success. Remember, a strong brand presence on your own website, combined with a strategic presence on Amazon, is the recipe for building a sustainable and thriving business. This article isn’t here to scare you away from Amazon, when you do it right, it works and many brands are extremely successful in doing so.

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Oak Haven Solutions

Oak Haven Solutions is a passionate and results-driven digital marketing & creative web agency.

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