We often talk about how B2B manufacturers can leverage Amazon to reach new customers and drive incremental revenue growth. But what happens after a new buyer makes a purchase? Amazon doesn’t always make it easy to market directly with the buyer, yet succeeding as a seller on Amazon requires more than just getting that first sale.
To really thrive on the platform, you need to convert buyers into repeat customers. Let’s take a look at some tips and tactics for winning repeat business on the world’s largest marketplace.
Deliver a Great Customer Experience
In the world of Amazon, putting the customer first isn’t just a mantra. It’s how they do business. From finding ways to lower prices on some products to ensuring same- or next-day delivery, Amazon does everything it can to meet and exceed customers’ needs. B2B customers, just like B2C shoppers, use Amazon because of the expectations for great prices and speedy delivery the marketplace has cultivated over the years.
That’s why the foundation of generating repeat purchases is providing a great customer experience on a customer’s first order (and subsequent orders, too). This means ensuring you meet or beat the promised shipping times, as well as respond promptly to customer service inquiries, including managing questions, returns, and exchanges.
Amazon sets minimum standards for performance to participate in many of its programs, such as Amazon Business Prime. Amazon offers up guidelines for listings and fulfillment, but it’s imperative to go above and beyond whenever you can. Fast shipping, excellent customer communication, and easy returns can turn a one-time buyer into a loyal repeat customer.
What’s more, if you fail to meet Amazon’s performance expectations for customer service, they can opt to boot you out of various programs.
Set Clear Product Expectations
Is there anything worse than opening a much-anticipated order from a business, only to find out it isn’t what you expected? Maybe it’s too big, or just not the right model altogether.
Whether this happens due to customer error or a mistake made on your end, it’s easy to see how a customer might not want to do business with a company that gets their order wrong.
To avoid this situation, it’s important to be transparent in your product listings about what customers will receive. Provide detailed descriptions, multiple images, and accurate specifications. Making sure there are no surprises when a customer receives their order can dramatically increase the likelihood that they'll trust you again in the future.
We also recommend proactively communicating with customers shortly after delivery to confirm the product met their expectations. This extra touch can earn you bonus points.
Request Product Reviews
If you do take the time and start reaching out to customers, it’s also a good idea to request a product review. Proactively asking satisfied customers to leave a review is perfectly allowable; you can send a request through the "Request a Review" option in Amazon Seller Central.
Product reviews are social proof that boost conversion rates. Getting more positive reviews helps convince first-time visitors to become repeat purchasers. It establishes you as a seller who delivers on their promises.
Offer Subscribe & Save
For consumable or replenishable products, consider enrolling in Amazon's Subscribe & Save program. This allows customers to subscribe and receive new orders of items automatically on a set schedule.
Subscribe & Save can help you develop reliable sales forecasts and revenue. Knowing what’s coming down the pike next month, next quarter, or even next year can help you better plan production and inventory.
Granted, this option isn’t ideal for every B2B manufacturer. But for those who make products that their customers order regularly month after month, this Subscribe & Save should be an obvious way to win repeat business on Amazon.
Leverage Amazon Business Accounts
Many B2B manufacturers spend a lot of time, energy, and resources selling products on Amazon. But for some reason, they skip using Amazon Business, the B2B arm of Amazon. Yet B2B sellers can seriously benefit from Amazon Business accounts, which have tools tailored to business purchasing, like budgeting, reporting, and the ability to reorder from past invoices. Offering promotions like volume discounts or customized quotes can incentivize large, repeat orders from Amazon Business accounts. Similarly, you can offer a discount on a future order as a way to say thank you to new buyers.
Use Amazon Sponsored Display Remarketing
Advertising through Amazon is a great way to introduce your brand and products to new audiences. But you can also leverage the same ad unit to remarket your products to past buyers as well as anyone who’s seen your products but not yet made a purchase.
In case you’re not familiar, remarketing allows you to show display ads to when a potential buyer visits a product page. Ads can be shown on both Amazon’s main website, but also other sites in the Amazon network. Ultimately, this tactic helps keep your brand and products in front of customers, encouraging them to become repeat buyers.
Add an Insert into the Package
Want to really surprise and delight new customers? Include an insert into your Amazon orders that both thanks the buyer for their purchase and encourages repeat business. This could be a discount on a future purchase (as mentioned above), but it could also be a free gift, consultation, or other value-add. This is an extremely simple and affordable tactic that’s also highly effective.
Individually, the tactics above might feel a little hit or miss. But they can also work in concert to create a powerful repeat order business. Ultimately, you’ll win more repeat business on Amazon when you focus on providing top-quality customer service, effective marketing, and delivering a quality product that meets or exceeds buyer expectations. Simple, right?
Having difficulties reaching B2B buyers on Amazon? We can help! Contact us for a FREE Amazon Assessment to learn the best ways to capture incremental B2B revenue on the world’s largest marketplace.