Amazon launched its Amazon Handmade page in 2015. Since then, it has become one of the first online destinations for craft artisans seeking to sell their products.
Rachel O'Neill is one of those artisans. She runs the online shop Loftipop, which sells art prints and other printed products like mugs with her creations. Here are some of the things she has learned over the years and that could help other craft owners to use the platform.
Developing a wide range of products
Like any other type of business, you have to offer something really valuable if you want to succeed. This does not change just because you sell on a major platform like Amazon. So do some research on the types of products you might be interested in selling and then find a way to differentiate your own offers to provide real value to your customers.
Read about the features of the platform
Even though the basics of your business may be the same, no matter the sales platform, there are certain things that are specific to Amazon Handmade. So, O Neill recommends doing some research before you start in order to understand all the specific features and how you can make them work for your particular store.
She says, "The first thing I did was I went to the sellers' forums and read to get the expertise of others. I've read all the handmade information and vendor support resources. Amazon Handmade also has a style guide so you can get an idea of how you are supposed to list the products, what types of images to use, SEO, everything. "
Complete your request
Before you can actually start selling on Amazon Handmade, you must apply. The application process takes about half an hour and requires you to complete some basic information and upload photos of your products. So you should be prepared with great pictures and ideas on your products before you start.
Amazon Handmade also uses a verification process to ensure that the artisans who participate in the page sell only hand-made, authentic, factory-free items. Although it's an additional jam during application, it will ensure that your products do not compete with the mass-produced products that are passed by hand.
Start marketing products
Of course, the list of real products is another essential step in the process. The seller's portal guides you through this process. So be sure to fill out all the information completely and accurately, and follow the Amazon style guide so you can have a better chance of finding your products.
Make adjustments as and when
No store will be perfect from the beginning. So, if it's good to do some initial research, do not let the process go on too long. You can also learn a lot by trial and error.
O'Neill says, "Just start, once you see what works and what does not work, you can update your records or make changes to your store."
Follow the new features
Since Amazon Handmade is still relatively new, it is constantly evolving with new features and capabilities. You can follow these by staying engaged with the website and forums. Even if there are certain things that educational material on Amazon does not offer, you can still get answers to specific questions by contacting the customer service team.
O'Neill says, "Whenever I meet something I do not know, I ask a question on the forums, it was a great resource."
Keep Your Options Open
One of the benefits of selling on Amazon is that you do not have to use the platform exclusively. You can expand your sales channels by also using Etsy, creating your own website, or even selling craft fairs or similar events. Loftipop also has a store on Etsy, but O'Neill says the sale on Amazon Handmade has given his company a significant addition to its existing revenue stream.
Focus on images
Visuals are an important part of any e-commerce store. Amazon Handmade recommends adding multiple images to each product list. The business style guide also contains suggestions on how to format your images based on your product type. For example, some products like jewelry sell better if you include at least one image that shows the scale, or what it looks like on a real person.
Do not forget the SEO
Amazon also has some guidelines when it comes to making your products accessible through research. Including keywords in product titles, labels and descriptions can certainly help. But Amazon's algorithm also takes into account items such as price, shipping cost, classification and availability.
Let's look at accomplishment by Amazon
Of course, the packing and shipping orders can take a lot of time when you use an online store. But Amazon's Fulfillment by Amazon program, where you can send your products to distribution centers and ask Amazon to take over orders, is also open to owners of craft businesses.
O 'Neill says, "It helps the artisans to evolve as they could not. It's like having employees and a warehouse without having all those extra costs. "
Photo via Shutterstock
More in: Sponsored