It’s a difficult realization that comes quickly to new sellers. Like it or not, products have a life cycle. You start strong and see great sales for a couple of months, maybe even a year. Then there’s a scary dip and you wonder what happened until sales come up again and level off. What just happened? And the more important question is, how do you manage your business so these ups and downs don’t destroy your inventory and decimate your capital for new products?
Just like everything in the Amazon world, there’s a formula. Let’s take a look:
The Technical Influences Behind a Product’s Life Cycle
There are three things occurring behind the scenes that play a significant role in your product’s life cycle:
- Amazon’s ranking algorithm gives an advantage to newer listings and preferential ranking to larger brands for which Amazon is a reseller.
- Rapid innovation puts new products on the market as fast as they can be invented.
- New sellers are pouring into the marketplace every day.
There’s not much we can do about any of these, but we can use our knowledge about them to better position our brands for success.
Markets and Trends
Of course it’s also important to consider general market and trend changes. What buyers are looking for changes daily. Just because everyone was clamoring for the newest water bottle three months ago, doesn’t mean they’ll be seeing value in that product three months from now.
Always, ALWAYS, keep your finger on the pulse of your demographic and market.
Viewpoints, preferences, needs, values, and aversions change on a dime, and if you’re there to notice, you’ll be in a much better position to advantageously correct the direction of your brand.
Survival of the Fittest
When you add the fluctuations in markets and trends to the technical influences, you get a very clear picture of who’s coming out on top. The fittest sellers for this environment are big established brands and newer products. If this sounds unfair and impossible to counter, take a deep breath. And adjust your marketing to accommodate your product’s life cycle:
- Have a constant flow of new offerings.
- Be aggressive with your marketing to establish yourself as a large established brand in Amazon’s eyes.
- Offer your brand’s cornerstone products outside the Amazon Platform
Remember… Know Your Product’s Life Cycle
- A period of growth
- A dip in sales
- Then sales level off
Be aware that this is happening so you can manage your inventory levels to accommodate the fluctuations. Plan for peak periods of the year and keep your inventory lean so you have the capital to always invest in new products.