How to Do a Competitor Analysis on Amazon – Steps You Can Take Today
When you are looking to improve professionally, every business guide, podcast, or blog article will tell you the same thing: understand who you are up against. Channelling your strategy towards overcoming already existing players in your field will not only give you a sense of orientation when you are executing your points of action, it will also be a point of motivation when you realize you have succeeded through your hard work. To begin with, however, you will need a solid competitor analysis. On Amazon, this analysis is especially crucial given the sheer amount of competition.
Identify and Define – Who Are the Players You’re Looking For?
The first step is about finding out how many other sellers are selling the same product that you are. With constantly changing trends, the high amount of black hat sellers and the huge amount of competition, selling on Amazon is certainly no walk in the park. If you are reading this article, you most likely already have a product that you are aiming to sell. Moreover, a deeper knowledge of the traits and the consumer base of this product is also highly important. Here’s an example that will show you why.
Conduct a Proper Keyword Research
Let’s begin with the quickest method on how to find your competitors on Amazon first. Let’s say you would like to sell computer hardware. For starters, you could type “Mouse” into the search bar and have a closer look at the results:
As you can see in our example, the regular household wireless mouse has the highest competition, followed by the gaming mouse and then the ergonomic mouse. This is a very general overview because our keyword is (intentionally) very high level – a short-tail keyword. For your Amazon competitor analysis, short-tail keyword research is helpful because it gives you a feeling for the market you are planning to enter.
Your competitor analysis on Amazon will of course require more detail at some point. For a more precise overview, try adding long-tail keywords that describe your product and are directed at the niche you want to sell to. For example: “wireless gaming mouse 6 button”
As you can see, the competition has dropped drastically and is now only showing the direct competitors that you are up against.
Use Your Product Knowledge For a Holistic Analysis
If you are planning to sell gaming mice, this statistic may at first communicate that this is not the best idea due to the relatively high amount of competition. Why not go for selling the ergonomic mouse that hardly has any competition?
This is where your deeper knowledge of the topic comes in handy for your competitor analysis on Amazon. Even though the competition is high in the market for gaming mice, they are also regularly sold at a much healthier markup than the regular models. You also have a better chance of finding a niche when selling models made for gaming. This is because many players have different preferences in regard to weight, look, manufacturer, etc.
Taking these factors into account, it would still make sense for many merchants – especially if they are knowledgeable in the field of gaming equipment – to sell gaming mice, even though the competition is high.
Audit and Research – Identifying the Strengths and Weaknesses of Your Competitors
As a marketplace seller, a competitor analysis on Amazon consists of two steps. Finding out who your competitors are is step one. Once you have found that out, it is time to identify what they can (and can’t) do. Why is this so important? Mainly so that you can set focus points to your strategy when it comes to putting together your listing. A thorough analysis will help you identify which elements of your listing are important and where to take extra care.
A competitor analysis of Amazon sellers always requires a closer look at the titles they use. Product titles should include brand + model + product type. This is where you should position all the essential product information relevant to the buyer. If you haven’t listed your product yet, take a look at what the other sellers are including in their product titles and work from there. Circling back to our example with the gaming mice, you can see that the most prominent features in the product titles are OS compatibility, sensor types, the number of programmable buttons and whether or not the mouse has a cord.
Your competitor analysis on Amazon will also help you figure out which features you should add to your product title that offer your customers something the other products don’t. As with our example, there are some gaming mice that offer a honeycomb casing for people with sweaty hands (gross, I know, but a great example for a particular niche), or a switchable tilt wheel for gamers that like to dive into sidequests and scroll through pages and pages of in-game lore.
This is basically an add-on to your product title which dives deeper into the features you have already mentioned. They are placed right next to pictures under “About this item” and should leave no questions open for the buyer. Same as above, find out what your product does better than the others and highlight this in a way that is descriptive and relatable for the reader.
In our example with the switchable tilt wheel, the seller has, for example, highlighted the switch from reading content to cycling through weapons. An excellent move if you ask me.
A picture says more than a thousand words and it definitely says more than the 500 maximum character count your product description is bound to on Amazon. When you do your competitor analysis on Amazon, you will notice that any seller worth his or her salt will have high definition pictures on their product detail page. You should do the same.
Shopping is very much about getting a “look and feel” for a product. Because online shoppers cannot get the “feel” of a product when they shop online, it is absolutely vital that you provide them with the “look” as much as you can. And this is made possible with high definition images that you can zoom into.
Your competitor analysis on Amazon will require you to check the descriptions of other sellers. This will help you gather good catch-phrases and useful information about their products. Read the descriptions carefully and look for two things: how they address their customer‘s needs and how the description communicates that this product fulfills these needs. Everytime you think to yourself: “oh, so that’s what it does!” remember that sentence and rephrase it to suit your product.
We already mentioned that 500 characters is not that much when you want to describe your product holistically. This is why Amazon introduced the Q&A feature to address any open questions. It goes without saying that you should be well aware of what your biggest competitors and their customers are talking about.
When composing this part of your competitor analysis on Amazon, be especially attentive to questions that your competitors cannot answer sufficiently, in case they appear in your Q&A, and have a better answer ready. This works the other way around as well. If a customer asks you a difficult question that you had trouble working with, just pop it in the Q&A of your competition and see how they deal with it.
While you are already rummaging through your competitor’s Q&A looking for weak spots, you can do the same with their reviews. Skip right through to the reviews with 1-star-ratings and see what your competition is lacking. Once you have figured that out, ask yourself whether you can offer a solution to that problem and – if you are able to – find a way to communicate this loudly in your own description of the similar product you are offering.
The final price of your product has a huge influence on your visibility and therefore also on how much you sell. Monitoring the prices for your competitor analysis on Amazon will give you a good overview of what you can charge for your products. This is a task which can be done manually to a certain extent. However, after your Amazon business picks up momentum, it can happen very quickly that you find yourself in a position where you have to monitor the prices of hundreds of other sellers each day. This just isn’t worth your time anymore. In these cases, it makes more sense to invest in a solution that optimizes your prices for you. Find out everything about SellerLogic’s repricing solution here.
Monitoring the monthly sales of other sellers is part of how to run a competitor analysis on Amazon. It gives you a good estimate of the inventory your competition is moving and whether they are underselling a product. It also gives you an overview over whether a certain product is still viable. As an example, you see that gaming mice with LED lights are constantly decreasing in sales during the past 6 months. This encourages you to invest into more plain-colored and non-flashy models. This is an absolutely hypothetical scenario, by the way. Everybody still loves flashy gaming gear.
The “999 method” to manually check how many sales your competitors generated in a day or month is not possible anymore and also often led to inaccurate results. However, there are many tools you can use that have specialized in analyzing monthly sales for your competitor analysis on Amazon.
Using Solutions – for a More Comprehensive and Detailed Analysis
Now that you know how to do a competitor analysis on Amazon, the question remains what to do with this info. The steps we mentioned above will help you get all the data you need for comparison. However, surpassing your competition professionally is a different ball game. Click on the following link if you want to find out more about the correct strategy for selling on Amazon. We wish you all the best and hope we were able to give you a few valuable tips in this blog article.
An Amazon vendor is someone who doesn’t sell his/her products on Amazon, but rather directly to Amazon. Amazon then sells these products from there on out, handling the relevant aspects such as shipping, customer service, and pricing. You can only become an Amazon vendor if you are invited.
There are several steps you can take that will provide you with enough information to make an informed decision on whether to go through with your product. For starters, you can conduct a keyword research on Amazon to see how many merchants are also selling your product. From there you can analyze your competitors titles, features, images, descriptions, Q&A sections, reviews, prices and monthly sales to get a more detailed overview.
Finding direct competitors on Amazon is possible through keyword research. The more precise your keyword research, the more detailed your list of direct competitors. If you type in “Mouse” into the search bar, you will get a more general overview of who is selling computer hardware. Whereas if you type in “gaming mouse cordless LED 6 buttons,” you will find the sellers specialized in your particular niche.
Image credits in order of appearance: © Alex – stock.adobe.com / Screenshots from Amazon