All posts by Alex Knight

About Alex Knight

Alex Knight is a staff writer for Web Retailer. A journalism graduate from City University, London, Alex has written for a range of publications including City Metric and Sky Sports News. He has also written and produced a short independent documentary on the battle to save London's Norton Folgate. Alex's topics of interest are ecommerce, sport and architecture. He considers himself a multimedia specialist having produced written content, podcasts and video reports.

Dirty Tricks Pulled by Amazon Sellers… on Other Amazon Sellers

A growing number of unethical Amazon sellers are abusing the system to take down their competitors. Here’s how they do it.

We all know that Amazon is a competitive marketplace. The battle can be intense and sellers are constantly on the lookout for ways to boost their listings. When it comes to the Buy Box, this is usually through price, maintaining good performance metrics and using FBA.

But some sellers will take things a step further and try to shoot down their competitors using a range of dirty tricks. Their aim is simple – to get a competing seller or listing suspended.

This underhand behavior is rife on Amazon, and a variety of different tricks are being deployed. These range from leaving negative reviews on competing products to switching genuine items with counterfeits, then making inauthentic item claims to Amazon.

Massive disruption is caused for the “victim” sellers, who lose money while their account is suspended. They are left frustrated, having to write a Plan of Action to reinstate their account – for problems that don’t actually exist.

To raise awareness of these anti-competitive practices, we’ve found five of the most prominent dirty tricks being pulled by Amazon sellers on their competitors.

Continue reading

Spotlight on Ignite: Taking Amazon Sponsored Products to the Next Level

Seller Labs has a new tool for managing, optimizing and reporting on Amazon Sponsored Products ads. It’s a game changer.

Sponsored Products ads have become an increasingly important factor in driving sales on Amazon. Last year, the number of sellers using Sponsored Products grew by over 100 percent, with the number of clicks on Sponsored Products ads up by over 150 percent.

The end of incentivized product reviews in October 2016 has no doubt played a part in this, as sellers have had to find new ways to promote their products. But it’s not the only factor. Amazon is more competitive than ever, and changes to search result pages have given more and more prominence to Sponsored Products. The ads now account for at least the top three results in the majority of searches. If you aren’t using them, you’re less visible to buyers than ever before.

Now Seller Labs, the company behind leading Amazon seller tools Feedback Genius, Scope and Quantify, have released Ignite. It’s a complete system for Sponsored Products ads, replacing the need to use Seller Central, and adding innovative features to help sellers select the most effective keywords, analyze their performance and optimize their ad spend.

Continue reading

The Tjernlund Brothers are Still Killing it on Amazon, Two Years On

Alex Knight catches up with Will and Andrew Tjernlund, two years after their business was first profiled here. Everything has changed.

When Web Retailer first spoke to Will Tjernlund back in April 2015, he was working with his brother Andrew, running a business selling private label products alongside established brands, mainly through Amazon.

Their Lean Startup approach saw profits grow dramatically, and they were at the stage of looking to hire more employees. Meanwhile, Will’s aim was to become location independent – so he could work from anywhere in the world.

Then the situation changed, almost immediately after the interview was published.

Continue reading

Free eBay Selling Tools for Research, Listing and Reporting on Sales

Alex Knight walks us through the best FREE apps for eBay market research, listing new and used items, and analyzing your sales.

Last year we welcomed a miniature dachshund to the family. Unfortunately, she immediately started terrorizing the family’s garden gnome collection and they were forced to seek refuge in the shed.

When tidying the shed this spring, I rediscovered our collection of twenty gnomes (what can I say, we like gnomes!) We can no longer have them on display in the garden, so I have decided to sell them on eBay.

I would ideally like to use some eBay software to help me with the process. I think the gnomes would fetch a better price if I do my market research up front, and build attractive listings for all the other gnome-lovers out there. However I don’t intend to build a real business selling on eBay just yet, so I’m looking for free software that can optimize my selling.

Continue reading

Spotlight on World First Receiving Accounts

Save time and money on your cross-border sales with this easy-to-use service for online sellers

Cross-border ecommerce is huge and it’s getting bigger. It is predicted to grow at an average annual rate of 25 percent, meaning that by 2020 it will have risen to $900 billion. That is twice the predicted average annual growth rate for domestic ecommerce.

There are several challenges which cross-border sellers have to manage. Translating listings and providing customer service in the local language are two of them, while working out the logistics of cross-border delivery can also prove difficult.

Receiving the proceeds from your cross-border sales may seem to be the easy part, as the marketplaces will do the conversion into your home currency for you. But, this ease-of-use can prove costly, as sellers don’t receive competitive exchange rates from the marketplaces.

World First receiving accounts are easy-to-use and provide sellers with a better exchange rate, so sellers can increase their profits from international sales by doing little more than opening an account.

Continue reading