Harmelin Attends NY’s Amazon Strategies Conference
On January 30, representatives from Harmelin’s eCommerce team attended the Amazon Strategies Conference in New York presented by Digiday, Glossy and ModernRetail. The event showcased knowledgeable presenters and visionaries who covered a multitude of topics ranging from successful Amazon tactics and strategies to why Amazon cannot be ignored in the modern age of eCommerce.
Amazon has managed to weave itself into many different industries such as healthcare, grocery – basically, you name it and Amazon is there. And, as people who are not Prime members become the minority in the US, you can’t help but wonder, “How big can Amazon possibly get?” Every day there are thousands of people who turn to Amazon when they start their product research, as opposed to a traditional search engine. As a testament to this, the shoelace brand Hickies shared their Amazon case study with the conference audience highlighting the correlation between their television airings and Amazon sales volume.
Unlike more mature platforms like Google and Facebook, Amazon is as rough around the edges as it is intricate. Advertisers are constantly learning more about the behavior of Amazon’s mysterious A9 algorithm and how it can be manipulated to improve their product rankings over those of their competition. Speakers from OneSpace and The Body Shop talked about the importance of product listing optimization by highlighting areas of the product display pages that carry the most ranking authority and importance.
Although important, backend optimization is only half the battle with Amazon because users still need to want to buy your product once they have found it. Speakers from 23andMe talked about the role of creative and how crucial it is to have high quality and engaging imagery to expose shoppers to a unique brand and buying experience. Enhanced brand experiences are going to be a big part of Amazon’s evolution over the next few years.
After some of the larger presentations, the conference broke into smaller interactive workshop groups to discuss advanced Amazon advertising campaign structures. Their hot new DSP had brand and agency representatives squeezing into cramped conference rooms for a chance to learn more. All four essential levers of the Amazon DSP were covered in detail – placement options, audience targets, asset types and messaging strategy.
The sessions were extremely collaborative, and brands had the opportunity to voice the challenges they face in an atmosphere designed to tap into collective experience to find solutions. Unfortunately, there are still many “wild wild west” elements of Amazon’s marketplace that brands battle constantly. From product knockoffs to fraudulent reviews, there are many factors that could hinder a brand’s success on Amazon. Although steps are being taken to better regulate this behavior, the bottom line is people are always going to be looking for a way to cheat the system, especially if the system generates $242 billion in annual revenue.
Nowadays, it’s hard to go through the day without coming face to face with Amazon in one way or another. Whether it’s hearing about their latest conquests on the news or spotting hundreds of Prime boxes on doorsteps during your commute home, Amazon has immersed itself into the everyday lives of Americans. If you’re a fan, or not, one thing is certain: it’s Amazon’s world and we’re all just livin’ in it!