How to Refocus Your Back to School Selling Strategy on Amazon

September 9th, 2021

Now is the time to optimize your back-to-school selling strategy on Amazon to reach parents and students. For many consumers, Prime Day (which occurred in June this year) kicks off the back-to-school selling season with many people looking to stock up on supplies and electronics.

Take advantage of what consumers are in need of as the school year approaches - whether kids are going to school in-person, being homeschooled or following a virtual path. There are different needs for all of these students and teachers.

Reality is, Back to School Shopping is BIG

Families with children in elementary through high school are estimated to spend on average $848.90 in 2021 to get ready for the school year according to the National Retail Federation. That is an increase of $59 more than last year.

Total back-to-school spending is expected to reach 37.1B this year for students in elementary through high school. College students and their families are expected to set records with spending reaching $71B.

These statistics indicate that there is significant potential for your sales. It’s time to ramp up your content optimization and advertising and marketing efforts to appeal to this vast group of shoppers.

Standard School Supplies

Many parents are gearing up for in-person learning this coming school year - which is quite different from what we saw last summer. If we’ve learned anything over the last year and a half its technology is a huge component for our education system.

That being said, the typical school supplies are still necessary. We’re talking about backpacks, calculators, pens and paper. The list can go on and on. If you have young ones you’ve probably already seen the supply list and it contains some new, less traditional items that are now standard in our lives like disinfectant wipes, hand sanitizer and masks.

The top back to school selling products on Amazon have traditionally been:

  • Clothing
  • Electronics such as computers, phones or calculators
  • Shoes
  • School supplies such as notebooks, pencils, backpacks and lunchboxes.

Think Outside the Box

While the need for traditional school supplies will still be on the forefront of parent’s minds, so will some other, less traditional items.

  • 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.
  • Lamps, Clocks and Timers
    Making sure work spaces are well lit is an important component. Additionally, many homes only have digital clocks but it’s important for children to learn how to tell time on an analog clock. Lastly, timers are great to get kids focused for periods of time. Having that countdown can really help ease the stress and simplify when it’s time to work and time to study.
  • Headphones
    Make virtual learning easier to hear for the students and quieter for the rest of the house. Headphones are also great for younger kids who are trying to focus on an app.
  • Organizing Supplies
    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.
  • Décor
    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 2021. So think outside the box.

Can your products work well for in-person, 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 décor.

Don't Wait, Make Sure Your Inventory is Ready to Go

We’ve seen how fragile the supply chain can get so plan your inventory early. If you are selling via Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) make sure you have inventory in-stock and ready to go. The back to school selling season is fast but can be lucrative.

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 and restock your inventory. Keep in mind it takes time to label and send in your inventory to Amazon. You don’t want to miss out on potential sales because your inventory wasn’t available.

Review Your Sales Data

Look at what items sold well during the back-to-school season in 2020 as well as the items that did well during Prime Day. Use this data to your advantage as well as keeping an eye on trends.

Understand Your Shipping Options

If you have inventory, you want to make sure you can move it. Even though customers have become somewhat 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.

Anticipate that consumers will be making last minute purchases and will want and need those items quickly. If you are able to sell FBA and have that Prime badge, it can work to your advantage and help garner those last-minute sales.

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.

Pictures Sell
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.

Create Store Pages
If you have an Amazon Brand Store use it to your advantage. Create a page specifically for the back-to-school audience. Make it easy for customers. Highlight best sellers, showcase lifestyle images and uses of the products as they relate to school and students. Use these pages to help drive the sale home.

Utilize Deals
If you have an Amazon Brand Store use it to your advantage. Create a page specifically for the back-to-school audience. Make it easy for customers. Highlight best sellers, showcase lifestyle images and uses of the products as they relate to school and students. Use these pages to help drive the sale home.

Don't Wait, Set Up Your Back to School Selling Strategy Today

Time is ticking. It’s best to plan and have your listings optimized and products ready to ship - now! By analyzing your data from previous years and Prime day, you should get a good feel for what consumers are likely to purchase. That should help 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.