SEMA 2019: How Established Manufacturers Can Increase Brand Control on Amazon

 

We had a great and productive time at SEMA this year, meeting with brands to discuss their goals, challenges, and opportunities for ecommerce. Throughout our conversations, we found a consistent theme: frustration. Many manufacturers, often those with long-established distribution relationships that predate ecommerce, were frustrated with a lack of control over their brand on Amazon. These conversations led us back to a persistent commonality: Most of these manufacturers worked or work with Amazon Retail.  

B&M Relationships Threatened

As the retail division of Amazon, working with Amazon Retail as the default “internet distributor” seems like the natural decision. However, as many manufacturers have learned, Amazon Retail is not interested in upholding brands’ control once their product is on Amazon. Instead, the priority is to offer the lowest price available, regardless of a brand’s pricing policies. 

This refusal to uphold brands’ policies is frustrating at best and dangerous at worst because it undermines their brick and mortar relationships. While Amazon may be increasing its market share, brick and mortar still dominates the majority of retail sales, making it one of the most important components of their overall business strategy. By threatening those relationships, Amazon Retail harms manufacturers, leading some to try to withdraw their product entirely from Amazon (which is nearly impossible to do completely). 

Reclaiming Brand Control

For brands in this situation, we recommend investing in brand protection software like Perispect, which identifies and tracks sellers, records their pricing history (including the date and time that pricing changed so you can identify who triggered the race to zero), notifies you when sellers or prices change, and provides templates for Cease & Desist notices.  

We also had the opportunity to present the etailz platform to brands at SEMA. The etailz platform model is a transformation in how etailz serves brands, offering our array of software and services to partners and non-partners through various business models and service bundles.  

With increasing brand control on Amazon being a top priority, many people were interested in learning about etailz Agency, where etailz manages a brand’s seller account, serving as an extension of their team. There was also strong interest in etailz’s software solutions, which can be managed by etailz or utilized through a self-service model.  

As always, we’re excited to continue these conversations with brands interested in an etailz partnership, selected services, or etailz’s service bundles.  

For more information, reach out through our contact form 

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