As the largest online retailer in the world, Amazon is proving to be one of the most dynamic companies in history. Amazon’s recent acquisitions of the upscale supermarket chain Whole Foods shows how much the company is dedicated to expanding its marketplace, and analysts believe that this is merely the beginning.
Along with the Whole Foods acquisition and the speedy development of the Echo smart home speaker powered by the Alexa virtual assistant, Amazon is clearly moving in a direction of complete market dominance, which translates into bigger opportunities and potential for third-party sellers; unfortunately, this dynamic growth is also bringing on some headaches.
In a recent survey conducted among 1,600 Amazon sellers by market research firm Feedvisor, 21% of respondents indicated that other sellers offering the same product were their biggest anxiety while 42% fear negative reviews posted by buyers. It so happens that these concerns are often caused by the following three security issues that few sellers are aware of:
1. Unauthorized Sellers
The Amazon Marketplace is wide-open for business, and some people may say that it is this very openness that creates issues for sellers. In recent years, unauthorized resellers have become a persnickety problem that Amazon has been unable to fully contain.
Amazon resellers have various motivations and strategies; some of them have clever business and marketing plans to promote their online stores while others are only looking to make a fast buck by skimming profits through less than ethical practices. Let’s say a woman who knits baby clothes for a living decides to list her creations on Amazon; if she has properly incorporated her business and registered her brand, she could benefit from authorizing a network of honest resellers. Nonetheless, if this knitter has not registered her brand and fails to protect her Amazon items, unauthorized resellers will realize that they have an opportunity to pass off her products as their own.
2. Brand Dilution
For entrepreneurs, manufacturers and inventors who are trying to build their brand names through the Amazon Marketplace, unauthorized sellers may bring about brand dilution. Brand managers should not spread themselves too thin on Amazon; they should only choose to work with third-party resellers who can be trusted to follow branding rules.
Brand dilution on Amazon tends to emerge when resellers use misleading, false or incorrect advertising to promote products. Many resellers are not committed to the products they sell, and they are certainly not committed to upholding the values and ideals of a brand.
Here’s something that many Amazon sellers are not aware of: the level of sophistication that dropshippers have reached allows them to impersonate sellers and even customer service departments.
Amazon sellers are being surprised with negative reviews and product returns that they never recall selling in the first place. These situations emanate from dropshipping, a sales strategy that under normal circumstances would help a brand extend its reach; unfortunately, many dropshippers operate in devious ways. In essence, dropshippers offer Amazon items at higher prices, hoping to make arbitrage money; when buyers realize that they could have purchased the same item for a lower price, they start the product return process, which not only causes sellers to lose money but also suffer negative feedback.
How Do I Avoid These Situations
To avoid the three situations mentioned herein, Amazon sellers who have 10 or more product listings should invest in a security software solution that can monitor their products and alert them about unauthorized selling, dropshipping and brand dilution. To learn more about protecting Amazon Marketplace stores and products, contact the security specialists at Brandlox, a clever solution that comes with a 10-day free trial for Amazon sellers.