Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Mon Oct 21 2013 11:26:42

Amazon Gives Third-Party Sellers Early Christmas Present?

By: Ina Steiner

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Amazon announced that "thousands" of third-party sellers will have the opportunity to participate in its holiday deals promotion program, though it was short on details on how to participate.

These are powerful marketing programs but they aren't right for every seller. Like any daily deals type of program, merchants would have to offer a steep discount on a deep SKU - in other words, have a very large quantity of an item that they can practically give away. On the other hand, the item has to meet Amazon's quality standards.

It appears Amazon will be inviting sellers, there's no information about how to apply, so it's not exactly clear why the company issued the press release - we've got questions in to Amazon.

Amazon is very picky about merchant standards in general, and even more so around the holidays. That's because Amazon must guarantee that items get delivered in time for holiday deadlines - parents need their gifts in time to put under the tree. So much so in fact that Amazon places restrictions on who can sell in the toy category in the months of November and December.

If eBay is correct in its cautious outlook on holiday sales, then price will be more important than ever for retailers. In its announcement, Peter Faricy, VP for Amazon Marketplace, stated: "We know that customers expect to find the lowest prices on Amazon and love browsing the holiday deal pages for great bargains. We are excited that for the first time ever our sellers will be able to showcase their unique and high quality items on the holiday promotion shopping pages."

By opening its deals merchandising to third-parties who can offer deep discounts, Amazon is hoping to capture those price-conscious  holiday shoppers.

What do you think of the program, would you participate (and how likely is it you'll receive an invitation), and what questions do you have about the program?

See Tuesday's EcommerceBytes Newsflash for more information about the program.




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by: pace306 This user has validated their user name.

Mon Oct 21 16:45:33 2013

As usual, Amazon reaches out to their sellers and want participation - so everyone can make money (they arent running a charity organization so lets not say its because they are magnanamous) and eBay ......

well eBay does nothing. Its de' regur for eBay to do nothing. Doing SOMETHING costs money and that means Wenig, JD & co get less !

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by: notfunanymore This user has validated their user name.

Mon Oct 21 16:57:23 2013

I'm praying amazon announces great earnings and a strong forecast. MAYBE, jd will then be on his way out

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by: NetWatch This user has validated their user name.

Mon Oct 21 19:47:02 2013

If Amazon top execs are paying attention to the horrendous mess going on at ebay- the continuing seller purges, the hiding of sellers' items from visibility on the ebay site, now is an excellent time for Amazon to land a "knock-out punch" against ebay.

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by: RCL This user has validated their user name.

Tue Oct 22 15:10:48 2013

I can't imagine amazon feeling threatened at all by eBay.

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by: Will This user has validated their user name.

Tue Oct 22 23:39:56 2013

Amazon used to send me an email containing SKUs and/or UPCs and it would read something like, ''Hello, we've noticed you have sold X-type items in the past. Customers have been inquiring about the following items, which are currently not in stock. Please see if you can get these items for sale on Amazon, and make the customers happy...''.

A win-win-win, something eBay would never do...although I've not received one of those Amazon emails for quite some time.

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by: Moonwishes This user has validated their user name.
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Wed Oct 23 09:37:17 2013

I'm not sure if my products would quality for that promotion, but I do get many of my products in the 'buy' box and that is great. Couple of weeks ago AI had the buy box and customer must have used it, because most of the other items actually available were cheaper but form sellers with worse feedback, not as good of condition, etc.  

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by: dzl This user has validated their user name.

Thu Oct 24 01:36:01 2013

Seems like a gross mischaracterization of eBay.

You are suggesting that Amazon, which draws a commission on 3P Merchant sales is somehow less compelled to make more money by dropping prices than eBay, which runs on the very same, commission-based model (charging almost half as much of a commission, too!)?

The only difference is, and this is from my experience working for a number of high volume selling accounts on both eBay and Amazon, is that Amazon doesn't mind competing against its 3P sellers and eBay, well, eBay is in the business of marketing its 3P merchants, not undercutting them.

How Amazon listings have you seen with Amazon.com occupying the buybox with prices on magnitude less than the 3P merchants?

Unlike all but the largest few Amazon 3P merchants, eBay assigns account managers to many small and midsized merchants, to help steer their business in the proper direction (growth!).

And as far as Gold Box is concerned, eBay has been running Events, Daily Deals Program and Fashion Vault programs for years now -- they are open to any seller with the right price and volume of goods necessary for placement on eBay's homepage.

I can attest that eBay's account managers are purely interested in movement of merchandise and that this almost always means lower prices -- not higher prices. The author's notion is absurd.



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