There is no question about it — when it comes to online marketing and the selling of products, Amazon is the clear leader. The company has a stronghold on nearly every aspect of online shopping and hundreds of millions of customers use the platform to purchase everyday essentials, buy and ship gifts to friends or family across the country, and try out new products for the first time.
Given this, it can feel almost like a requirement for small businesses looking to grow their customer base to be associated with Amazon. But getting started can seem like a real challenge. There is a lot to learn, and on a platform as large as Amazon, it can be easy to get lost in the crowd.
Fortunately, there are plenty of tips and tricks out there to help you and your small business break through the noise and reach new customers, even on a platform as large and imposing as Amazon’s. One way to accomplish this is through the use of Amazon Launchpad.
What is Amazon Launchpad?
If you’re just now hearing about Amazon Launchpad, you’re probably not alone. The company launched this program in 2015 with the specific goal of helping small businesses to expand their customer base on the larger Amazon platform. Since initiation, the program has helped launch millions of small businesses onto a larger platform with a greater audience and potential for increased sales.
Although Amazon marketplace provides an immense platform for nearly any business or individual that wants to sell products, businesses in the Launchpad program get somewhat special treatment. Program participants are privy to three main benefits: onboarding guidance, marketing support, and brand HQ. All three of these things can make a huge difference in customer awareness of products and building overall interest in products.
For instance, once enrolled, Amazon will help participants along with setting up accounts and tutorials on successfully marketing on Amazon from the experts. Throughout the program, they are also spotlighted on Amazon and given marketing support to help build a greater customer base. If technical problems arise, technical support is available — this is one fancy tool in your growing-your-Amazon-business toolbox.
How can Amazon Launchpad help?
Everyone who has tried to start a small business — whether they were successful or not — knows that it is very challenging to get off the ground. Many things make it difficult for sellers in the first couple of years, such as getting products ready, marketing, building a loyal customer base, and paying bills. It takes real organization and vision to get a small business off the ground and well on its way to long-term success.
That’s why programs like Launchpad are such a huge benefit to small businesses trying to find niche markets on Amazon. One of the benefits of using Launchpad is offering Premium A+ Content. Brand owners can design their Amazon storefront and product detail page to describe their products visually with appealing formatted content but high in superior imagery, HD videos, and interactive features.
Here lies a fast-track to brand recognition, increased sales, and a wider audience for those that are willing to put in the hard work to make it happen. To be sure, Launchpad certainly won’t do all the work for you — they are just a support and marketing mechanism — but the opportunity is profound.
In modern marketing, user experience is everything. That is true in many ways — younger generations, such as Gen Z and millennials, set to become one of the largest economic contributors in the coming years. Many of them preferentially shop online and are enticed by unique, personalized experiences on websites with pages that are easy to use and navigate. Amazon provides just this, which is what helps those that sell products on the platform benefit.
If you’re convinced that Amazon Launchpad is the right next step for your small business there are a couple of other things to take into consideration. First and foremost, is your business legitimately ready for growth? You will need to ask yourself about your production capability and workforce— are you able to keep up with the demand, and do you have the space to grow if needed?
Amazon Launchpad requires that participants apply and that they are already sellers on Amazon Seller Central before their application. Furthermore, because you will introduce your brand to a much greater audience space soon, they require that you have products that will be ready for shipping immediately. You’ll need a stockpile on hand as there will not be time to manufacture your products once they start selling.
Once your products start selling, they have to be rated well by customers. Maintaining at least a 3.5-star rating is a requirement to stay in the program. Orders for your products have to be able to be filled by Amazon and have a Prime Badge, which means that your products will be in Amazon warehouses, and Amazon will directly handle customer order filling.
Amazon Launchpad has a lot of benefits to offer your small business if you are looking for a means of growing online. The program provides all sorts of support and marketing opportunities that can kick-start your business and get your innovative product noticed significantly. If you are ready, get going! Future customers will see you on Launchpad soon.
Jori Hamilton is an experienced writer from the Northwestern U.S. She covers a wide range of subjects but takes a particular interest in covering topics related to business, marketing, and technology that benefits both of those endeavors. To learn more about Jori, you can follow her on Twitter.