This is going to be a short one, as we have our hands full on the business end of LUPO preparing for next week’s investor meetings at Slush, continuing follow-up negotiations with Indian, UK and US partner candidates, enabling retail distribution in Helsinki area, and growth hacking Amazon to make the most of the imminent Black Friday, Cyber Monday and the holiday season shopping spike in UK and US markets.
Take a look at the graph above. It shows the daily clicks we got from Amazon Sponsored Products automatic campaigns. In these campaigns, Amazon’s AI decides based on our product description and similar other product descriptions when to bid for a “related sponsored products”. Highest bids receive placement. This kind of placement is essential for a new product like ours with no brand recognition, so we have set our daily maximum budgets to a level that effectively invests all of our Amazon revenue back into Amazon to spur clicks and the possibility of conversion.
The campaigns are automatic, so we didn’t pay much attention to them while we were traveling on business for most of October and early November, as you have noticed from this blog. There are a couple of peculiar things in the graph. First, you’ll notice a week’s gap in UK clicks about a month ago. That was related to the firefighting we have mentioned earlier. Many UK customers had received the wrong package. We learned that Amazon had mislabeled some of our Finnish packages as English packages, so the automated warehouse shipped Finnish packages to some customers, who had ordered the English version. This is obviously unacceptable quality, so we asked Amazon to check all of our packages in their warehouse and make sure they have the correct labeling. We stopped the sponsored products campaign for that week and resumed, when Amazon UK assured us that all labels were now correct. Things looked good, sales growth continued at a rapid pace.
But something was wrong. Why didn’t the Amazon US sponsored products automatic campaign result in similar results despite identical product descriptions and images? We even managed to ramp up the US reviews faster than the UK reviews with nearly 20 by mid-November. Then we started digging at the ad reports that Amazon makes available. The above graph is an illustration of one such sets of numbers. Upon graphing it, it was obvious that the reason US sales lagged UK was not because of the product or the different cultures, but because Amazon US was simply not showing our product as an option for shoppers as often as their UK counterpart did. We wondered why… until we noticed that the default bids in UK and US were different. In fact, in UK it was nearly double the US bid. We immediately doubled the US bid and the results were instantaneous. In the last few days, US clicks have caught up with and even surpassed the UK clicks – just in time before Black Friday and the launch of the holiday shopping spree in the US. Whew…
Until next week!
Author: Nouri Mikko Werdi