Amazon PPC Management Software

Today, we’re excited to announce the release of a new suite of features for our Amazon PPC management software, AdManager. The new features include: 

  • Automated search term optimization 
  • Automated budget optimization to maximize profitability 
  • An Out of Budget table that recommends ideal budgets 
  • A new “4 Campaign Build” option for campaign creation 

All these features are being added for free for existing users and will be included as standard features for all new subscribers.

This set of features joins the existing suite of features, which includes dynamic bid optimizations, a centralized keywords table for simplified campaign management, and detailed reporting. 

Automated Search Term Optimization 

AdManager can now automatically identify and add high-converting search terms as keywords to campaigns, promoting relevancy and driving more sales. Users set custom rulesets that will mine customer search terms from automatic campaigns and broad and phrase match types. If a search term meets your selected parameters, AdManager will automatically add it as a keyword to your manual campaigns.  

With this feature also comes keyword negation. AdManager will automatically identify and negate terms that don’t meet your custom performance thresholds. For example, a keyword that continuously generates clicks but never generates a conversion is wasting your budget. AdManager can now automatically negate such terms, minimizing wasted ad spend and increasing campaign relevancy. 

Search Term Optimization

Never Run out of Budget 

AdManager now lets you set custom rules that automatically increase daily budget for high-performing campaigns if they run low. This way, you ensure that your most profitable campaigns never turn off, maximizing your revenue. 

Budget Optimization

Campaign Budget Optimization Table 

AdManager now includes an Out-of-Budget table that shows at what time a campaign ran out of budget, how often they run out of budget, and uses Kaspien’s proprietary data to recommend an ideal budget for each campaign.  

It’s important that campaigns can run 24 hours per day because optimizing campaigns requires data. If your campaigns consistently run out before 10am, any optimizations you make are using incomplete data, and as a result, risk doing more harm than good. The Out of Budget Table provides both visibility and a solution for this problem.  

Out of Budget Table

Automated Campaign Build Strategy 

Maximize data insights and improve performance using our proven “4 Campaign Build” architecture. When creating a new campaign, you can select our “4 Campaign Build” to automatically create three manual campaigns (one per match type) and one automatic campaign. 

Since we began advertising on Amazon seven years ago, we’ve been experimenting with campaign architecture to find the most effective structure for strong results and ease of management. The 4 Campaign Build is what we’ve found to be the most effective.  

Manually creating this architecture is time consuming, which has led many marketers to regretfully turn away from it, even knowing the benefits to data insights and performance. AdManager solves this problem by automating its creation.  

4 Campaign Build Ad Architecture

For New and Experienced Marketers 

AdManager is designed to cater to both novice and experienced Amazon marketers. The easy-to-use interface and data visualization make it accessible for marketers not yet versed in Amazon advertising. For users who are experienced with Amazon advertising and want to get more in the weedsAdManager offers the depth and customization that you’re looking for.  

Take a self-guided demo to see the backend, or request a live demo with a specialist to see AdManager in action and ask more detailed questions.  

If you’re not ready to start using the software yourself, AdManager is also available as a managed service. Our experts can serve as an extension of your team and manage your Amazon ad campaigns on your behalf. 

Our Lowest Prices Ever 

To celebrate the launch of these new features, we’re offering AdManager at our lowest prices ever! Self-service AdManager is now available starting at $99/month and managed service AdManager is available starting at $1,300/month. Visit Kaspien.com/AdManager to learn more. 

One should be able to infer the mission of a company based on their data infrastructure. By reviewing the data infrastructure, you can see what inputs and outputs matter to a company, who is using the data, and how it’s used.  

At Kaspien, we use data-centric processes to inform our business strategies. These processes, such as ideation, hypotheses testing, or refining operation, all depend on a data platform that is both deep and wide. The depth of our data enables more nuanced and precise insights, while the breadth enables us to understand the big picture and identify trends and anomalies.  

Together, a deep and broad data platform maximizes our insights, empowering us and our partners to grow smart. Leveraging data, we can identify the biggest opportunities and gravest threats early, allowing all our business segments to successfully adapt to ever-changing marketplaces. As a result, we empower our partners and drive success on Amazon, Walmart, and beyond. 

Why do we need a data platform? 

Our teams make decisions based on the best available data. We rely on hourly updates of our data for three things: 

  1. Monitor performance 
  2. Adjust strategies 
  3. Discover new opportunities 

 

To achieve these essential functions, our data infrastructure must be able to collect, transform, and load data into systems where the data can be further tailored to the specific needs of each team.  

For example, our Finance, Data, and Marketing teams all utilize similar data, but each team needs the data structured in very different ways. Our Finance teams ingest 10 million rows of data each day to enable precise capital allocation. Our Data team processes 600 million rows of data to build and refine internal software and algorithms. Our Marketing team pours over 2 million rows of data each day to assess campaign performance and make strategic adjustments. To meet the needs of each team, we pump billions of data points through our platform every day.  

Creating a Data Platform Takes Time

Our data platform has seen meteoric growth over the past few years. Currently, our entire system processes just over 1 billion data points per week, a growth of 40% over the past 2 years. etailz data growth

While we now enjoy countless benefits of a robust data platform, our data operations were not always so streamlined. We had to adapt to the growing number of business initiatives and data requirements. We grew our engineering and data teams to build our platform and continue to invest in our data infrastructure today. The tools we use give us the ability to acquire, update, and distribute data with ease. Our platform is amenable to adding new data sources, managing prioritization queues, and delivering real-time data.

In short, our data platform is the stanchion from which the rest of our services stem.  

Data & Insights Power Our Services

We provide dozens of ecommerce services that cover the full gambit of running and optimizing an online business, including inventory and supply chain management, brand protection, digital marketing, creative services, and tax compliance. We also have developed a suite of software services, including self-service options for ad managementseller & price tracking, and Amazon seller reimbursements. All our software and services are exponentially improved by leveraging our data platform, and those benefits are shared by all of our partners, fueling their success. 

How does Kaspien process and manage mission critical data?  

Our primary analytics data pipeline (and associated workflow) is orchestrated via Apache Airflow. We’ll go into further detail about how we use Airflow in a later blog post (see here and here for some good introduction material). Airflow allows us to build in diagnostics, tests, and monitor the progress for all our systems, which include applications and databases. 

data processing cycle

Our analytics data is largely warehoused in AWS S3 and RDS, Redshift, MongoDB, and Snowflake. We use these various warehouses for the different types of data that we need to collate to be useful for our analytical purposes, which vary from team-to-team. 

Our data pipeline starts with the systems we developed that gather data from marketplace APIs, third-party data sources, and our web-scraping systems. We process 3 million data points per hour from these systems. We then prepare our data to be collated and structured to ensure data integrity and maximum utility for our teams. 

Aggregating disparate data

Many of our experiments and exploratory analysis depend on systematic data collection to ensure high-resolution and high-quality data. Our rich datasets covering pricing, demand, product metadata, among many others, have grown by 15% month-over-month over the past year. 

At this point the data are stored in their final form in warehouses for our ‘end-user’ processes to consume, such as internal dashboards, purchasing applications, or inventory management systems. But for the Data Team, the data in these warehouses are not final. Rather, they are but a collection of staging warehouses to then further transform and load into our own analytics databases. From these databases, we prototype forecasting models, respond to real-time research needs, or explore new aspects of our data. 

Data Benefits Our Partners 

Ultimately, the insights derived from our data platform help our partners and clients grow. Our diverse portfolio of data combined with our partner’s portfolio creates synergies we can harness.  

For example, while our partners may have sales and marketing data for their own portfolio of products, we can use our data to simulate and forecast sales. For marketing efficiencies, we have data related to pay-per-click ads, search engine optimization, and retargeting going back years for hundreds of thousands of products. Our Business Intelligence teams can stand up dashboards for monitoring key performance indicators that we know are important to track, personalized for each partner. Our historical data on shipping lead-times and product warehousing cycles will help our partner manage inventory and capital allocation. And last but certainly not least, our Data Science team uses these data to train AI models for our core business and partners. 

Data is the core of what we do. It enables us to make improvements on the micro and macro levels for our partners, fueling their growth to new heights. If you want to leverage our data, software, or services, get in touch through our contact form.

etailz AdManager is your marketer who never sleeps

We recently launched Kaspien AdManager, software for Amazon pay-per-click (PPC) ad management. To celebrate this momentous occasion, we sat down with our AdManager experts to discuss some of the most pertinent questions, like “What is AdManager?” and “What makes it better than other Amazon ad management software?”  

You’ve asked. We’ve answered.  

Find all the juicy details below. 

What is Kaspien AdManager?  

AdManager is your Amazon search marketing team member who never sleeps. In more technical terms, it’s marketing software for Amazon that minimizes manual campaign management by automating keyword and bid optimizations for PPC ads. Users can take a simple “autopilot” approach, where they select their target advertising cost of sale (ACoS) then let Kaspien’s proven optimizations turn on, or users can get into the weeds and create custom rule sets around specific goals per ad group. Additionally, AdManager also captures and composes data, giving you the insights needed to improve your marketing efforts.  

What problems does AdManager solve?   

On Amazon, marketers face three consistent problems: campaign management is time consuming, achieving optimal return and product placement simultaneously is challenging, and data is limited and spread across several reports. All three of these issues become more problematic as a business scales. AdManager solves each of them.   

Automates Optimizations: AdManager gives back time by automating optimizations, including bid up and bid down, adding new high-converting keywords from the Search Term Report, and adding low-converting keywords as negative keywords. It also saves time for manual optimizations by allowing users to adjust all keywords, all ads, all ad groups, or all campaigns at once via a centralized keywords table.

Enhances Efficiency: Second, it maximizes returns and placement by using a combination of value-based and rule-based bidding, which enables optimizations to be more nuanced, precise, and efficient.

To get more insights into why this is such a big deal, download our AdManager eBook. 

Empowers Data-Driven Strategy: Third and finally, it solves the data issue by collecting data from the lifetime of the campaign (instead of just the trailing 90 days), then presents it in a single place, so you can easily assess campaign performance and make strategic improvements. 

etailz's PPC management software increases Amazon sales

What circumstances brought about the need for AdManager?   

Saying that we “just launched” AdManager is a bit of a misnomer. In truth, Kaspien created AdManager over 4 years ago for our own teams to use when managing our partners’ ad campaigns. What we really mean when we say AdManager “just launched” is that it is available for the first time as a self-service application.  

Interestingly, the impetus for AdManager was the need to reduce the time it takes for reporting. As one of the largest 3P sellers on Amazon, Kaspien was running thousands of campaigns for hundreds of brands and reporting on those campaigns was time intensive. As we built out the reporting functionality, we quickly found that there was so much more potential in automation.   

Amazon lacked a way to effectively manage ads for every product, so we had been making all our optimizations via macros in Excel. The files grew so large that they literally crashed Excel. By creating AdManager, we could save time for not just reporting, but every aspect of campaign management. And since we were building the software ourselves, we could ensure it ticked all our boxes, first and foremost being that automation did not sacrifice our experts’ ability to tailor optimizations down to the product-level. 

How does AdManager differ from what’s available in Seller Central?  

Where to begin? AdManager is much more robust and has a more user-friendly interfaceUnlike Seller Central, it provides access to lifetime campaign data, displays realtime changes, enhances optimization functionality, uses AI algorithms that optimize based on product-level KPIs, allows max bid ceilings, and provides cross-campaign reports of keywords, ad group, and product performance 

etailz AdManager vs Seller Central

software for Amazon PPC ads outperforms Seller Central

Amazon advertising via Seller Central is limited compared to AdManager

How does AdManager differ from other PPC Management software for Amazon?  

AdManager is more sophisticated. Most other Amazon PPC management applications dumb down the ad management process by only allowing users to select a target ACoS for their entire product line. This is great for small catalogs or marketers who want to maximize return at a very high level, but it does not serve brands that have products at varying stage of their life cycles (i.e. new products need more aggressive ACoS targets), and products with different margins (which require different ACoS targets)AdManager has dynamic optimization capabilities. Marketers can either set a target ACoS and use Kaspien’s proven optimizations, or they can create custom optimizations using a combination of metrics in a tiered structure, enabling a more nuanced strategy than most competitors. 

It’s also one of the only PPC management tools built by Amazon sellers. We’ve spent over 12 years in online retail and have been refining and validating AdManager on our own and partners’ campaigns for over 4 years. We know the ins and outs and all the pain points of advertising on Amazon, and we used that experience to make the best Amazon advertising software available 

Who should use AdManager as a Managed Service vs. Self-Service? 

AdManager is available in two formats: as a Managed Service and as Self-Service. In the Managed Service model, Kaspien’s marketing experts use AdManager to run your Amazon ad campaigns on your behalf. As such, the Managed Service is ideal for brands who don’t have the personnel, time, or expertise to run and optimize Sponsored Ads on Amazon. This model is available to everyone: our retail partners, agency partners, and businesses using just a select set of Kaspien services.  

The Self-Service model is for brands or agencies who have the personnel and know-how to run PPC ad campaigns on Amazon but could use a better tool. If you have the expertise, but struggle to find the time or want to see improved performance, then the Self-Service model is a great fit. 

Who could benefit from using AdManager?  

All businesses who advertise on Amazon could benefit. The PPC management software can handle a few campaigns or hundreds of campaigns, depending on your needs. AdManager gives you the tools you need with the option to get as granular as you’d like, so anyone from an entrylevel marketer to a veteran marketing manager can drive improvements to their campaigns.  

Some businesses are cutting back on marketing spending now due to the human and economic impact of COVID. Why should impacted businesses be looking for software at a time like this?  

The biggest winners in uncertain times are the ones who can maximize wherever theyre investing time and money. With the reduction in ACoS that AdManager provides, we typically see the software pays for itself through spend reduction and sales increases in just a few months. If you’re skeptical, start your free trial. You’ll see results. 

Amazon PPC software drove consistent year over year sales growth

What are the next steps in AdManager’s journey? What else is on the roadmap? 

There is so much potential for this unicorn! We’re developing Vendor Central compatibility and improved automated optimizations. We’re close to releasing Day Parting, which is a feature that many advertisers (and we at Kaspien) are very excited about. We’ve been beta testing Day Parting, and the results are very promising. We’re also looking to expand to additional domestic and international marketplaces, which is a huge need within the marketing world. The goal is to simplify and enhance every marketer’s online performance through the use of this incredibly powerful software. 

Learn more, request a demo, or start a free trial at Kaspien.com/admanager.

Amazon search marketing just got a whole lot easier.  

We’re proud to announce the beta launch of our self-service Amazon ad management software, Kaspien AdManagerAdManager is designed by marketers for marketers, drawing on over 11 years of ecommerce marketing experience to create our dream tool.  

We’ve spent years building, using, and refining AdManager internally to run our partners’ ad campaigns on Amazon. Now, we’re launching it as software as a service (SaaS) so interested brands can bring their marketing in-house while using the industry’s best Amazon ad management software.  

Apply to the Beta 

Automate Four Major Optimizations 

The software uses artificial intelligence to automatically optimize bids across all CPC/PPC campaigns, maximizing efficiency and sales. Specifically, Kaspien AdManager automates four optimizations: 

Bid Optimization  
Every day, AdManager automatically bids up or down at the keyword level based on any combination of metrics, including ACoS, ROAS, clicks, CPC, ideal CPA, ideal CPC, sales, and more.  

Search Term Mining  
AdManager identifies high-converting search terms and adds them to your list of keywords, continuously improving campaign performance.  

Budget Optimization  
Ensure that high-performing campaigns keep running, regardless of their budget ceiling. If a campaign is exceeding your goal metrics, AdManager can automatically increase the daily budget to maintain momentum.  

Keyword Negation  
Not all keywords are profitable. AdManager evaluates current keywords and automatically negates low-performing terms, minimizing wasted ad spend and increasing campaign relevancy.  

Lifetime Data Insights & Custom Reporting 

In addition to enhanced campaign optimization capabilities, AdManager also provides better data insights and reporting. With AdManager, you can collect marketing data for the lifetime of your Amazon campaigns, in stark contrast to the 60-day window Seller Central provides into marketing analytics

AdManager can also create reports that include charts, graphs, and tables to visualize your data and empower you to make more informed decisions. 

AdManager Drives Real Growth 

We’ve been using AdManager internally to run our partners’ Amazon ad campaigns for several years, to great success.  

On average, we’ve seen AdManager: 

  • increase total sales on Amazon by 30% 
  • reduce Advertising Cost of Sale (ACoS) by 50% within three months of implementing AdManager 
  • yield a 10:1 Return on Ad Spend (ROAS) on over $48 million in Sponsored Product sales 

Many of our partners have seen even better results, with one brand seeing Sponsored Product revenue increase by 192%! 

Apply to the Beta 

To claim that Kaspien AdManager is the best Amazon ad management software is a bold statement, but to claim otherwise would be a lie. AdManager offers more customization for managing your Amazon ad campaigns than any competitor. It was made by marketers, for marketers. 

Apply to the AdManager Beta today!  

Recently, I’ve been getting several questions on how Kaspien partners with brands. In this post, I’d like to address these questions and define the various products and services that Kaspien offers.

At Kaspien, our mission is to be the ultimate online growth partner. We empower brands to achieve their online retail goals through innovative, proprietary technology, tailored strategies, and mutually beneficial partnerships.

To get a little more tactical today, I’d like to focus on the suite of products and services that we offer to our partners.

Kaspien Partnership Models

We partner with our brands in 3 primary ways:

1 – Software
In this model, you own inventory, and you sell it.

We equip your own team to work smarter and faster with our suite of self-service software. We offer solutions for automated inventory management, marketing, and brand protection. We have built our tools on cutting edge data science and artificial intelligence, prescriptive analytics, and managed data to support sales >$800M.

Learn more about our software.

2 – Agency Services
In this model, you own inventory, and we sell it.

We use our proprietary technology to serve as an extension of your brand while you maintain inventory control. We can manage your entire online sales channel or provide software and services on an a la carte basis.

Learn more about our agency model.

3 – Retail Partnership
In this model, we own inventory, and we sell it.

Brands can partner with us to represent their products across marketplaces. As your retailer, we’ll purchase inventory through consistent POs and fuel sustainable growth through our proven software and services. This is similar to how Amazon operates its 1P business. As they raise the requirements for brands to work with the traditional 1P model, companies like ours step in to fill in that market gap.

Learn more about our retail partnership model.

These are three primary partnership models, but brands aren’t confined to them. We can deploy any combination of our software and services in the manner that best serves your brand.

As you can see, our approach to working with brands aligns directly to our mission of helping brands succeed on various marketplaces.

Next, I’d like to go deeper into some of the specifics we offer through these different partnership models.

Software

At Kaspien, we have the following software available to brands to help them build their marketplace businesses.

Ad Management with AdManager
With Kaspien AdManager, you can increase your CPC marketing impact. Powered by optimization algorithms to manage your Amazon ad campaigns, AdManager automates bid setting and search term mining to maximize profitability. AdManager is currently in Beta and we’re accepting applicants.  Apply here.

Seller & Price Tracking with Perispect
Using Perispect, our proprietary brand watch software, you can monitor pricing, identify and track sellers, enforce your MAP, and combat unauthorized sellers. You can start a 30 day free trial of Perispect today.

Cost Recovery
Identify cases in which Amazon owes you money for lost or damaged product, overcharged fees, or other mismanaged inventory and recoup what’s owed to you. We will be publishing a SaaS product for Cost Recovery soon. In the meantime, this is available as an agency service and can be accessed here.

Sales & Inventory Forecasting
Empower your brand with our sales prediction model to accurately forecast sales at a product-specific level. Keep your supply chain tuned to position inventory in FBA for both existing and new-to-market products without out-of-stocking or overstocking. We will be publishing a SaaS product in 2020. In the meantime, you can access his service through our Retail Partnership.

Reporting & Data Insights
Gain access to your data and generate actionable insights. Our marketplace intelligence platform simplifies your reporting by generating a single, digestible report on finances, inventory health, catalog representation, marketing, and logistics.

Cross-Marketplace Dropship
Extend your products’ reach and protect against out-of-stock issues by using our dropship order management system to ship inventory out of your own warehouse solutions. We will be publishing a SaaS product in 2020. In the meantime, you can access this service through our Retail Partnership.

Agency Services

Here is a list of agency services we provide:

Consultancy

Complete Amazon Channel Management
Work with a dedicated account manager who is committed to your success. We’ll manage your online business from start to finish or anywhere in between and establish a regular call cadence to review account metrics, completed projects, and key initiatives.

Brand Analysis
Our experts can provide a thorough competitive analysis, audit your Seller Central account for improvement opportunities, and conduct keyword research for your brand and products.

Review Management
Product reviews are a key step in the purchase cycle of marketplaces, and our review management solutions make sure your customers are singing your brand’s praises.

Digital Marketing

Paid Search Campaign Management
Our expert search marketing team utilizes our proprietary software, AdManager, to automate bid management and keyword optimization to increase your on-marketplace exposure and drive revenue.

Inbound Marketing
Introduce your brand to entirely new audiences and build brand loyalty through our paid social campaigns, influencer network, and social media management service.

Listing Optimization
We prime your listings for success through comprehensive optimization. Our SEO team will create and optimize listings with keyword-rich, compelling content to maximize your products’ visibility on the SERP and increase conversion rates.

Photography & Video
Turn browsers into buyers through professional, high-quality studio & lifestyle images and video. Our talented creators will produce content that showcases your products and tells your brand’s story.

Amazon Promotions
We’ll work with your marketing calendar to create a targeted blend of Amazon-specific promotions to increase conversions of shoppers visiting your listings. Accelerate the adoption of your products with flash sales, deals, coupons, BOGOs, and sampling.

Brand Protection

Marketplace Compliance
Our compliance team ensures listings stay compliant with ever-evolving Amazon policies and navigates category-specific regulations, importing & exporting of goods, IPR violations, and brand registry enrollment for your brand.

Seller & Price Tracking
We’ll utilize our proprietary brand monitoring software, Perispect, to monitor pricing violations, identify unauthorized sellers, and escalate case management to clean up your channel.

Inventory Management

Inventory Planning
We’ll help you master marketplace policies and develop effective inventory management to avoid surplus product and long-term storage fees.

Marketplace Expansion
We have dedicated teams to help you expand your reach internationally and across all major marketplaces, including Walmart, eBay, and Amazon’s international marketplaces.

Cost Recovery
Amazon owes you money. Are you recouping what they owe you for lost and damaged inventory? Our Channel Auditor software allows you to automatically identify claims with Amazon and seek reimbursement.

Retail Partnership

Ready to get started? Upload your price list now

Retail Solutions

Mutually Beneficial Partnerships
We start all partnerships by aligning our goals and developing actionable strategies to help us reach them. You’ll work with a dedicated account manager who is committed to your success and strives to understand your brand and products so we can best represent them on marketplaces.

New Product Launches
We’ve launched thousands of new products on online marketplaces. We offer a comprehensive First-to-Market solution for brands launching their latest products, which includes inventory management, listing creation, paid ads, and social media marketing.

Marketplace Expansion
We have dedicated teams to help you expand your reach internationally and across all major marketplaces, including Walmart, eBay, and Amazon’s international marketplaces.

Inventory Management

Inventory Planning
We utilize our proprietary sales forecasting algorithm to place consistent purchase orders and protect against out-of-stocks. We keep inventory turning regularly through FBA, dropship, and third-party channels.

Pricing Control
We partner with you on your strategy, whether that means upholding a standardized price or helping you stay competitive on Amazon through our predictive repricing models that ensure you can consistently move product.

Opportunity Identification
We can partner with you to strategically identify new product or bundle opportunities to introduce on the marketplaces.

Digital Marketing

Paid Search Campaign Management
Our expert search marketing team utilizes our proprietary software, AdManager, to automate bid management and keyword optimization, increasing your on-marketplace exposure and revenue.

Inbound Marketing
Introduce your brand to entirely new audiences and build brand loyalty through our paid social campaigns, influencer network, and social media management service.

Listing Optimization
We prime your listings for success through comprehensive optimization. Our SEO team will create and optimize listings with keyword-rich, compelling content to maximize your products’ visibility on the SERP and increase conversion rates.

Amazon Promotions
We can build a marketing calendar for your brand utilizing a targeted blend of Amazon-specific promotions to increase conversions. Accelerate the adoption of your products with flash sales, deals, coupons, BOGOs, and sampling.

Photography & Video
People buy what looks good. We can help your products sell quicker by utilizing our in-house team of photographers to create stunning listing photos, product demonstration videos, and brand videos.

Brand Protection

Marketplace Compliance
Our compliance team ensures listings stay compliant with ever-evolving Amazon policies and navigates category-specific regulations, importing & exporting of goods, IPR violations, and brand registry enrollment for your brand.

Seller & Price Tracking
We can provide you our proprietary brand monitoring software, Perispect, allowing you to monitor the sellers in your listings and track their current and historical pricing.

Review Management
Product reviews are a key step in the purchase cycle of marketplaces, and our review management solutions make sure your customers are singing your brand’s praises.

Learn more about our retail solutions here.

Kaspien Solutions: Bundled Software & Services for Specific Goals

Finally, at Kaspien, we offer several solutions bundles to support different goals. Each solution is designed with a package of select software and services to help you achieve your goal.

Here are a few bundles we support:

  1. Brands looking to scale their marketplace business
  2. Brands looking to protect their brand presence
  3. Brands looking to grow beyond Amazon
  4. Brands looking to expand globally
  5. Brands looking to sell on marketplaces for the first time

 

If you’d like to discuss opportunities with our team, please use our contact form or email me directly at

Till next time,

Kunal Chopra, CEO,Kaspien

How much does it cost to sell your product yourself on Amazon

For the third installment of our costs of Amazon series, we’re examining the Amazon business expenses associated with direct selling. In the previous posts in this series, we looked at the costs of Amazon third-party sellers and the costs of Amazon Retail 

WHAT IS DIRECT SELLING & HOW DOES IT WORK ON AMAZON? 

Direct selling is the business model where a brand operates as both the manufacturer and seller of a product. Amazon’s private label brand, Amazon Basics, is one example of this. Costco’s Kirkland Signature brand is another. If you want to own the supply chain, retail, and marketing portions of your Amazon business, you’re interested in direct selling.  

Benefits of Direct Selling 

Direct selling has many benefits, not least of which is maximum control over your brand’s online representation. Rather than relying on third-party sellers or Amazon Retail to present your products accurately and entice customers, you control your listings.  

You also have control over your supply chain, potentially all the way from manufacturer to customer. Controlling your supply chain helps mitigate the risk of counterfeits entering your distribution network or unauthorized sellers undercutting your pricing. 

And while we’re on the topic of price, you control that too; no one can cut your pricing when you are the exclusive seller of your product.  

Challenges of Direct Selling 

The first and foremost obstacle is resources. Handling production, supply chain, marketing, creative services, compliance, customer service, taxes, etc. requires a great deal of research, time, and effort. 

Managing these elements is easier for brands that only have a few products because the workload grows exponentially with the addition of more product lines or marketplace expansion. To scale successfully and sustainably, you need to either expand your team (preferably with experienced personnel) and/or use software to automate processes.  

WHAT ARE THE COSTS? 

As the manufacturer and seller of your products, you’re responsible for nearly every expense. This is not inherently a bad thing, but it’s a major factor for determining your business strategy. 

Personnel 

Running an Amazon seller account at scale requires employees. That means paying wages, salaries, and benefits. These investments quickly add up. If you wish to pursue direct selling, how many employees do you need, what experience and skills do they need, and can you afford them?  

Supply Chain 

Logistics and supply chain will account for a significant portion of your annual expenses, with fees coming from sourcing, compliance, manufacturing, packaging, freight, taxes, warehousing, processing, shipping, demand planning, liquidation, and battling counterfeiters, to name a few.  

Do you have the knowledge, tools, and personnel necessary for managing your business’s supply chain from start to finish? If not, which portions can you acquire and which can you outsource?  

Amazon’s fulfillment centers take care of the final leg of the supply chain (although FBA comes with its own fees). Brands can also work with services like Deliverr to offer two-day shipping for other online marketplaces, including Walmart, eBay, Shopify, and more.  

Supply chain is one of the most extensive and significant obstacles to direct selling, which is why many manufacturers turn to third-party sellers, first-party sellers (aka Amazon Retail), or agencies to outsource that segment of their business. 

Digital Marketing 

Marketplaces are increasingly crowded. To ensure your products can be found, digital marketing is a must.  

Fortunately, not all marketing has an expense. Listing optimizations are among the most important efforts a seller can make, and they require nothing more than time, research, and effort.  

Here’s a brief overview of how to create great listings: 

  1. To optimize a listing, start with keyword research. Which search terms have the greatest relevancy to your product and what’s the competition like for those search terms? A mixture of high search volume and low competition keywords can help your product establish a foothold.
  2. Use shorttail and longtail keywords. Short-tail keywords can help listings populate for more general queries (boosting visibility) while long-tail keywords are more likely to lead to conversions (shopper has specific interest and therefore stronger intent). Plug keywords into the listing title, bullets, and product description.
  3. Last but not least, review and revise the listing to achieve a balance of discoverability with buyabilityThe listing must be keyword-rich to be discoverable by Amazon’s algorithm, but it must also be persuasive to a human being. If the listing is just a string of keywords, shoppers won’t convert, and then it doesn’t matter that your listing was discovered. 

 

You can read more in our blog post, 5 Tips for Improving Listing Discoverability 

Product images and videos are also incredibly important for improving sales velocity. Keywords make a listing appear on the search results page, but it’s the image on that entices a shopper to click into the listing itself. You can read more on that and what goes into creating quality photos and videos for Amazon here. 

Another free marketing service is Amazon Live, which allows brands to livestream product videos directly on Amazon. The service launched early in 2019 and has proven to drive excellent visibility 

While free services are fantastic, brands should also consider paid marketing services. For Amazon, this includes Sponsored Product AdsSponsored Brand Ads, Sponsored Display Ads, Coupons, and Deals. Beyond Amazon, brands can look into paid marketing on social media with services like paid social ads, direct B2C social media engagement, and influencer marketing 

As with everything else, each of these services require time and effort, and they greatly benefit from being driven by someone with experience in search marketing or social media marketing.  

Brand owners interested in selling their products themselves can research best practices, guides, and tutorials so they can take on these services themselves, expand their teams internally, or outsource marketing to freelancers or agencies.  

Brand Protection 

Online brand protection is a necessity. The reality is that there are unscrupulous individuals and companies who will steal intellectual property, make counterfeits, undercut pricing, or make false allegations to get your seller account shut down 

To defend against these threats, brands need to proactively protect their IPR by filing for trademarks, copyright, and trade secrets whenever appropriateThis includes domestically and internationally.  

Defending against counterfeiters means working with trustworthy manufacturers who won’t sell your designs or products to other parties, closely monitoring your supply chain to prevent counterfeits from entering your inventory, monitoring listings, and periodically making test buys to verify product authenticity.  

Another element of brand protection is product pricing. Price consistency is important because it reflects brand integrity. When a product is offered for far less than the MSRP, shoppers question if its legitimate and why the MSRP is higher. If you are your products’ exclusive seller, controlling pricing is easy. If you also partner with other retailers to sell your product, you need to be able to monitor and enforce your pricing policies. This can be done manually, as detailed herebut it’s a timeconsuming process that is difficult to scale without automation.  

Finally, if your account is suspended due to false allegations, the quickest way to get it restored is to provide the necessary paperwork showing that you own the product you sell and that it’s not counterfeit 

You can read 11 more tips for protecting your brand online here 

THE MIDDLE GROUND – OUTSOURCING PARTS OF YOUR BUSINESS 

The benefits of direct selling make it extraordinarily appealing to many brands, but many discover through experience that they’re not yet equipped to handle it. For those brands, there’s a middle ground: partner with an agency and/or utilize software. 

By outsourcing to an agency, a brand gains a team of experts to run their marketing, supply chain, brand protection, or any combination of the three for a fraction of what it would cost to hire a team in-house. It’s a cost-effective approach that can drive profitability and sustainable growth, giving brands time to develop and pursue their short-term and long-term goals.

In addition or as an alternative, brands who wish to sell their product themselves can pay for software that automates and/or simplifies various services, reducing the time and personnel required to successfully run an online business. This option has the greatest profitability potential, but it again depends on who’s running the tools. If the tools are excellent, but the person using them is inexperienced, the tools will yield only a fraction of their full potential. Working with an agency or software provider who can train your team on the software is a great bridge to independent direct selling.

THE TAKEAWAY – WHICH BUSINESS MODEL IS THE BEST? 

After reviewing the business expenses associated with Amazon third-party sellers (3P), Amazon Retail (1P), and direct selling, there’s no clear answer to which is the perfect solution. The best Amazon business model for your brand depends entirely on your business’s goals, needs, limitations, and priorities.  

Kaspien offers services for third-party retail, direct selling with an agency, and direct selling independently. If you’d like to learn more about any of these services, reach out through our contact form.

Over the last 11 years, we’ve developed a wide range of excellent services for our partners, and in the fast-paced world of ecommerce, some partners may have missed a few of those opportunities 

That’s why we’re dedicating this post to providing an overview of Kaspien’s various offerings, including our array of ecommerce services, our proprietary software for marketing optimization, brand protection, and inventory management, and our two divisions for ecommerce partnerships 

The Kaspien Platform

We take pride in our flexibility, offering multiple partnership pathways that support your individual goals while utilizing the same high level of service and expertise. Kaspien can partner with brands as a software provider, equipping brands with industry-leading software for marketing, brand protection, and inventory management; as an agency, providing anything from complete Amazon channel management to a la carte; or as a traditional wholesale retailer, representing your brand across online marketplaces.  

Your One-Stop Shop for Everything Ecommerce 

When you partner with Kaspien, you gain access to one of the largest catalog offerings in the industry.
Click on a service below to read a blog post about it.
 

Dedicated Partner Support 

You’ll have a dedicated point of contact who is always reachable by phone or email. Anytime you have a question, big or small, we’re here to answer it. Our shared success is grounded in strong communication and support.  

  • Dedicated account manager familiar with your brand’s goals, obstacles, and needs 
  • Tailored, outcome-oriented strategies with actionable steps 
  • Regular communication and reporting 
  • Comprehensive First-to-Market (FTM) Program for successfully launching new products  

Marketing Services 

Our partners receive complimentary listing creation and optimization services, including the creation of enhanced brand content, as well as access to unparalleled paid marketing services at exclusive rates. At Kaspien, we don’t charge a marketing management fee. Instead, your monthly marketing budget goes entirely to fueling your selected services.  

Compliance Expertise 

Our compliance team is versed in government and marketplace regulations for selling in online marketplaces. We’ll work with you to prevent listing suppression and to get them back online anytime there is an issue. 

Proprietary Technologies  

We’ve developed and used proprietary technology to become a top Amazon seller. We can deploy this same array of exclusive software for our partners to protect your brand, enhance efficiency, and maximize your sales. 

Sell Globally 

Our global presence is always growing. We’re active in Amazon US, Canada, United Kingdom, Germany, PAN-EU, and now India. We can also sell your products on Walmart and eBay.  

Want to Learn More? 

Reach out to your Kaspien account manager or use our contact form for questions or to inquire about services you’re interested in!  

Data is only as valuable as what you do with it. While many companies have become proficient at gathering data, far fewer are adept at transforming it into meaningful actions. 

At Kaspien, we use proprietary applications to convert nebulous data into real, material gains for our partners. In our comprehensive approach, data drives fulfillment efficiency, mitigates risks, enhances marketing, and improves our organizational efficiency, all of which facilitate stronger and more fruitful partnerships. 

We use many programs and strategies to make data actionable, but three of our most impactful efforts are: sales forecasting, intelligent ad automation, and organizational efficiency.  

Mitigate Risks through Predictive Inventory Management 

We process historical sales data through our inventory management system, enabling us to accurately forecast Amazon sales with a 96% accuracy. While 100% accuracy sounds ideal, some error is intentional: Because outofstock issues can slow a product’s sales velocity and harm a brand’s good reputation, we’ve purposely designed the algorithm to slightly over-forecast sales. 

By predicting sales, we can purchase the ideal amount of inventory, moving it in a steady flow from your brand to customers without stagnating in warehouses. This in turn provides our partners a consistent and stable cashflow, while also significantly reducing Amazon inventory fees. 

With more capital free from storage fees, Kaspien is able to more aggressively expand our partners’ catalogs, enhance marketing, and ultimately take a more calculated approach to Amazon that facilitates consistent, stable growth for our partners. 

Refine Your Sponsored Ads through Intelligent Data Mining 

Sponsored Product ads are the highest converting ad type on Amazon, which makes them one of the most valuable marketing tools in all of ecommerce. Since their introduction, Amazon has continued to expand Sponsored Products’ targeting capabilities by adding different ad groups and keyword generation. This added complexity is a double-edged sword, simultaneously increasing the ads’ potential profitability as well as their potential for wasted ad spend.  

To ensure that Kaspien can keep providing industry-leading marketing results, we’ve built a bid optimization software called AdManager. AdManager automates four major optimizations that minimize wasted ad spend and maximize conversion rates. 

We fuel AdManager’s intelligent ad management automations with data drawn from Amazon. The program retains ad performance data indefinitely, in contrast to the 60-day window of historical data provided by Amazon. Informed by the long-term data, Kaspien is able to detect and capitalize on market patterns, enhancing our Amazon marketing strategies and amplifying our partners’ ROI. 

Improving Organizational Efficiency to Better Serve Our Partners 

Though data-driven applications and strategies are key, they’re still only a piece of the puzzle. The other major factor is the group of people using those tools. 

In addition to fueling our internal software with data, we use data to empower innovation and improve our organizational efficiencies. After being processed in the relevant applications, the data is filtered back into a central database, allowing our purchasing, compliance, marketing, and product expansion teams to collaborate more efficiently. 

By streamlining our processes internally and promoting easy cross-department communication, we recover valuable time that we then give back to our partners, helping them strategize and successfully navigate the ins and outs of Amazon, instead of slogging through logistics.  

Growing Together 

Our partnerships are grounded in a mutually beneficial relationship. With every innovation, we both take another step forward. If you want to learn more about our retail and agency services or our self-service software, reach out through our contact form. 

Unauthorized sellers are one of the most pervasive challenges in online retail. These rogue sellers are often the cause of pricing violations, which can disrupt a brand’s relationships with brick and mortar accounts as well as their direct website retailers.  Unauthorized sellers can also erode brand integrity by not upholding your brand’s quality standards, not honoring product warranties, and providing subpar customer service. 

That bears the question:  How can brands protect their pricing policy and brand integrity in online marketplaces?  

There are many software-as-a-service (SaaS) programs out there designed to help with online brand protection, but we found them to be lacking in key areas; so we built our own.  

Perispect – Empowered Insights, Actionable Data 

Kaspien launched Perispect in 2015, and we’ve continued expanding and improving its capabilities ever since.  

At its core, Perispect™ is a price monitoring software. It provides insight into who is selling your product, and at what price, empowering manufacturers to take control of their brands’ online presence. By identifying who is selling your product and alerting you when your price policy has been violated, Perispect gives you the power to take action. 

By identifying who is selling your product and alerting you when your price policy has been violated, Perispect™ gives you the power to take action.

 

Key Features 

Price Monitoring 
Stay aware of the prices at which your products are being offered on marketplaces. 

Seller Tracking 
Gain complete visibility into unauthorized and counterfeit sellers so you can protect your brand. 

Historical Tracking 
Track key events regarding pricing and violation history, so you can see the full picture. 

Customized Reporting 
Access easy-to-use reports to gain actionable insights. 

Push Alerts 
Receive emailed alerts for important seller and price updates. 

Dedicated Account Manager 
Enjoy direct access to a subject matter expert for onboarding, on-going training, and SaaS product knowledge. 

Key Benefits 

Operated by Ecommerce Experts 
Perispect was designed, developed, and is operated by Kaspien, the industry leader in marketplace sales and expertise. It’s not just a SaaS product being offered by yet another software company; it’s a valuable tool operated by industry experts. 

Save Time 
Perispect saves you time by presenting data in an easytofollow format on a single screen view. You won’t have to manually audit your listings to monitor sellers and pricing.  

Know Your Sellers 
Perispect has a robust database of sellers that includes actual business name, address, phone number, email addresses, and websites. You will be notified when a seller changes their name on Amazon and when new sellers enter your listings. 

MAP Enforcement Aids 
Perispect will alert you when a MAP violation occurs. It also comes with email tools and templates designed to help you enforce your pricing policy, including Cease & Desist notices and MAP Policy Violation notices. 

Perispect is currently available in Amazon (US, Canada, United Kingdom, Germany, France, and Japan), Google Shopping (US, Canada, United Kingdom, Germany, France, and Japan), and eBay.  

Get Perispect 

If you want to use Perispect to safeguard your brand’s online representation, you can sign up for a free trial. If you’re a current Kaspien partner, contact your account manager to discuss using Perispect 

You can also contact our Perispect team directly at  or call 509.928.0344.  

Amazon Sponsored Product Ads are among the most impactful paid advertising tools in online retail. Although these ads appear only on Amazon, nearly half of US shoppers begin their shopping journey on Amazon and 73% of daily online shoppers click on products ads while browsing. Of those who click on the ad, a staggering 83% purchase the product!

The problem is, everyone else also believes in the power of Sponsored Product Ads, creating fierce bidding wars. To compete, you need your dollars to work more efficiently, driving more conversions for less money.

We’ve been working on that.

Introducing Kaspien’s AdManager

AdManager is Kaspien’s proprietary campaign optimization software. Through active machine learning, AdManager automatically updates targeted keywords and bids based on performance goals that you define.  

Amazon advertising operates using an auction system, with sellers bidding on search terms. The seller with the highest bid and best performing ad typically wins the auction. When a shopper enters the search term, that seller’s ad appears on the page. The seller is charged only if the shopper clicks on the ad.

By automating campaigns through AdManager, we ensure that your campaigns undergo continuous optimization, regardless of time or day. If our team is out on the weekend or seasonality picks up, your campaign will still be able to capitalize on that momentum.  

Features

Bid Optimization
AdManager can bid up or down at the keyword level, ensuring maximum profitability. You can customize the metrics used to determine the bidding strategy, including ACoS, ROAS, clicks, CPC, ideal CPA, ideal CPC, sales, and more! Bid optimization runs daily. 

Daily Budget Optimization
If a campaign runs out of daily budget due to high clicks and conversions, AdManager can automatically increase the daily budget to continue capitalizing on the momentum. AdManager checks on the daily budget every hour. 

Search Term Optimization
AdManager runs weekly audits for converting search terms and adds them to the campaign as keywords, making the campaign more efficient over time and amplifying your return on investment. 

Add Negative Keywords
AdManager also automatically re-designates poorly performing keywords as Negative Keywords, which prevents future bids on those terms to minimize wasted ad spend and increase campaign relevancy. 

Our software engineers and developers have invested well over 5,000 hours into AdManager, and we’re continuing to improve and expand its capabilities. Best yet, this highly customizable bid optimization software is complementary to all our Sponsored Product campaigns. 

Why You Need an Ad Platform

The calculation for your ads’ ideal CPC is fairly straightforward. The challenge is not in the formula; it’s in the variables. The numbers you need plug into the calculation change every day, with conversion rates rising and falling day by day and week by week.  

To get maximum return on investment, you need to update those numbers daily so you’re never bidding too much or too little. Sellers can manually monitor their products daily, but the practice is simply not scalable.  

By automating campaigns, AdManager allows you to simultaneously optimize Sponsored Product campaigns for hundreds of products, saving you time, minimizing wasted ad spend, and maximizing return on investment. 

Learn How AdManager Can Help You

If you want to take your paid advertising on Amazon to the next level, reach out to your account manager or contact Kaspien through our contact form. 

Recently, vendors using our proprietary software application Perispect to track sellers and pricing across online marketplaces have been spotting Amazon sellers advertising their products below MAP pricing. Many vendors do not realize that some of these sellers may be “scam sellers” who have many products in their Amazon inventory but do not ship anything to customers when they order and pay for products.

Here are 3 ways to spot a likely scam seller on the Amazon Marketplace:

  1. “Just Launched” sellers with more than 200 products in their inventory

Sellers who have “just launched” in their profiles are starting out on Amazon with some inventory and are looking to be a part of the growing ecommerce market. However, some scam sellers will open up fake accounts on a daily basis with a huge amount of items in their inventory. If these items are not Fulfilled by Amazon (in other words, not an Amazon FBA Seller), then the seller oversees shipping the products to the customer. Customers and vendors should look out for these kinds of sellers, as they may never ship the products they say they have on Amazon.

  1. Amazon 3rd Party Sellers with “shady” names

Perispect (our proprietary SaaS offering for channel monitoring) combs through a large number of sellers looking for contact and shipping information. Sometimes, the seller name can set off red flags. For example:

“!NOTE: Contact us prior to ordering>> SmartBuyPoint[at]GMAIL.COM!!”

“%BRAND NEW!!!%Mesmeric Fair% Please Contact me before buy → claudia66@reaagan.com”

“.BEFORE ORDER CONTACT: CLAYTON. 14D (at)GMAIL COM”

These are some examples of fraudulent sellers. The seller name contains contact information, like an email address, that is poorly formatted. The seller asks that the customer contact the seller prior to ordering. Customers and vendors should not contact these sellers because they will most likely attempt to scam them.

  1. Sellers with poor customer reviews

Scam sellers can be identified simply by looking at what other customers have written on the seller review portion of the information page on Amazon. Scam sellers will most likely have all negative reviews noting that products have not been delivered, and they are unable to contact the seller for further comment.

>>Best practiceKnow your sellers.

When you know who is authorized to sell your products on Amazon, it’s easy to spot rogue and scammer sellers and avoid being the victim of an Amazon Scam. This is more manageable when you have a limited number of authorized sellers.

 

If you are planning on selling your own products on the Amazon marketplace, then you better have a system in place for tracking Amazon merchants. Having an unknown merchant or seller pop up in your Amazon product listing is a common frustration that most brand owners will experience. These one-off Amazon sellers can negatively impact your product by altering the content of the listing, undercutting prices of authorized sellers and providing poor customer service that can lead to negative reviews on the listing. So what can be done to keep these unwanted merchants away? The solution is simple: communicate regularly and practice vigilance.

Manually Track Amazon Merchants

Let your distributors and authorized sellers know who is permitted to sell your products online. Authorized sellers want to maintain a good listing as much as you do, so they can be a great lookout for anything unusual and will let you know if anyone uninvited shows up to the party. Being vigilant of your brand is also very important. By monitoring your product listings, you will know if your product information is up-to-date as well as to help you keep track of any duplicate listings and counterfeit products that sometimes show up with unwanted sellers. Having a reliable merchant tracking software can save you time by scouring Amazon to see who is selling your products and at what price.

While it may be difficult to gather and maintain up-to-date information on your sellers without a seller tracking tool, there is a way to manually check Amazon for sellers.

  • Navigate to your brand storefront page and scroll down until you find the refined search box on the left side of the page. Here you will see all departments that your brand is listed under.
  • Clicking into any department will redirect you to a new page with additional search refinements.
  • Looking through the options, you will find a seller section function towards the bottom of the search bar. You can click on “See more” to view the full list of Amazon sellers that are currently selling your products. (Keep in mind that this is not a complete list of sellers but rather a list specific to one category.)
  • To gather a list of all sellers you must perform a refined search for all departments that your product is listed under. This process is worthwhile but also time-consuming.

Amazon Merchant Tracking Software

For brands that don’t have the time or resources to track sellers manually, utilizing seller and price monitoring software can be very helpful. Software like Perispect tracks sellers, monitors pricing, and provides actionable data in easy-to-digest formats. Whether you decide to monitor your listings manually or utilize a tool to do it for you, tracking merchants and pricing is a vital part of your brand strategy.