As we have all become well aware, shifts in the way we once did things are inevitably changing due to a worldwide pandemic. Parent’s are in the middle of navigating this new normal as the school year is approaching. With a shift in schooling options, in-person, virtual or homeschool, there will ultimately be a change in what consumers are searching for as the first day of school approaches. It’s time to refocus your back to school selling strategy and take advantage of what consumers are in need of as the school year approaches.
Reality is, Back to School Shopping is BIG
Families with children in elementary through high school planned to spend on average $696.70 in 2019 to get ready for the school year according to a July 2019 annual back-to-class survey by National Retail Federation and Prosper Insights & Analytics. These statistics indicate that there is significant potential for you to increase your Amazon sales leading up to the back to school season, and in some cases can continue well into the start of the school year.
Typical School Supplies Are Still Needed
While everything is changing, almost daily, don’t forget that parents and teachers will still want and need the typical school supplies, whether they are learning from home or in a traditional classroom setting. Also, many parents are trying to make this time of year as normal as possible for their kids and give them the excitement of getting new supplies, clothing and shoes.
The top back to school selling products on Amazon have traditionally been:
- Electronics such as computers, phones or calculators
- School supplies such as notebooks, pencils, backpacks and lunchboxes.
Potential Growth for Back to School Selling on Amazon During a Pandemic
While the need for traditional school supplies will still be on the forefront of parent’s minds, so will some other, less traditional items.
Whether parents are sending their children to school part-time, full-time or keeping them home for the time being, masks have become a necessary school supply. We’ve seen more kid-friendly designs come to the marketplace and if we follow the recent trends, this will continue to be a hot seller. (And we know, no one wants to wear them but they may as well be cute and fun for the kids.)
Desks, Tables and Chairs
Having a dedicated workspace if you are homeschooling or planning for potential school closures is on the minds of many parents. Make sure all popular options are stocked, especially affordable and space saving options.
Make virtual learning easier to hear for the students and quieter for the rest of the house.
Keeping the school day functioning smoothly will be an important task. Being able to organize the added papers and books at home will be a sanity saver for many parents.
Games, Puzzles and Toys
Activities for kids to do at home to pass the time and keep their mind engaged is important.
Some parents are searching Pinterest to get excited about creating a homeschool room (We’re guilty of it). They’ll be searching for rugs, prints, frames, signs, bulletin and marker boards - anything and everything to make the room cohesive, functional and fun.
These are just some of the many Amazon product listings that can take over the back to school spending in 2020. So think outside the box. Can your products work well for virtual or homeschool parents? Consider optimizing your listings and dedicate a few of the image slots to showing how your product is for kids and school. Don’t forget about the college students, they will still need all the home basics from towels and sheets to microwaves and fun decor.
Don't Wait, Make Sure Your Inventory is Ready to Go
This past spring we saw how fragile the supply chain can get with the onset of a global pandemic. Shipping that once took 2-days was taking a few weeks and many items were simply just not available. The back to school selling season is fast but can be lucrative. To ensure that you make the most of this time make sure your products are ready to go.
Check Your Inventory
Know what you currently have available and estimate what you may need to have ready to go. If you are storing your products and shipping them yourself, make sure you have the space to organize and store the new inventory.
If you are selling FBA, check the new shipping limitations that were just released. This inventory number can be found under Inventory > Inventory Planning > Restock Inventory and will give you the amount of inventory you are allowed to send in to an Amazon warehouse at this time.
Review Your Sales Data
Look at what items sold well during the back to school season in 2019 as well as the items that did well during Prime Day in 2019. Additionally review the items that spiked at the beginning of COVID-19 (spring 2020). This information can help guide you as to what people may be interested in purchasing during this unique season.
Understand Your Shipping Options
If you have inventory, you want to make sure you can move it. Even though customers have become accustomed to longer shipping times it doesn’t mean they want to wait. If you ship free and fast, then your products will stand out from the crowd.
Also, there is still a lot of uncertainty with what is going on for back to school in most states. Anticipate that consumers will be making last minute purchases and will want and need those items quickly.
Prepare for Back to School Shoppers
Write for Your Audience
Make sure your title, bullet points and descriptions are speaking to parents and students. Help them to understand how your product can help their back to school life and new normal - for whatever back to school option they choose.
Create infographics and share lifestyle pictures that showcase your product being used for students and parents.
Set Up Your PPC Advertising
Make sure that you are taking full advantage of this shopping period by targeting the shoppers who are most likely interested in your products with the right PPC advertising options.
How Can Amazon PPC Advertising Benefit My Sales?
Utilize PPC (Pay Per Click) advertising to increase awareness and visibility of your brand or product. Traditionally, without advertising, it could takes weeks, months or even years to work your product up the first page of search results. But with advertising you can move your product up in search results almost immediately. Learn more.
Don't Wait, Set Up Your Back to School Selling Strategy Today
Time is ticking and with so much uncertainty it’s best to plan and have your listings optimized and products ready to ship - now! By analyzing your data from 2019 and 2020, you should get a good feel for what consumers are likely to purchase and that should help you to ensure you have the right amount of inventory on hand.
The next biggest thing is to make sure your listings can be found. If your listings are buried within the search results you will not be satisfied with how this back to school selling on Amazon season turns out. Make sure you optimize your listings with content and pictures that really showcase your products, answer top questions and show how parents and students could really benefit from having your product in their hands. Don’t forget to budget for advertising. It is the fastest way to move up in the search results and ultimately get those sales.
Our team of Amazon selling experts are here to lend a hand. We understand the intricacies of Amazon and can help you get your listings ready for the back to school shopping season and beyond. To get started, simply sign up for a free consultation. From there you will receive an email to schedule an appointment time that works for you.