Outdoor Equipped & Sponsored Products Strategy
We spoke with Outdoor Equipped, one of Amazon’s top outdoor apparel, gear and footwear sellers. Recently, Outdoor Equipped was ranked #64 on Web Retailer’s Global Top 1,000 Sellers’ list, with a 98% positive feedback rating.
Outdoor Equipped is also rated as a #1 Best Seller in many of the categories that they sell on Amazon because they offer competitive pricing, as well as a history of customer satisfaction.
Note: The sellers listed by Web Retailer are ranked by feedback in the past 12 months.
Although feedback isn’t necessarily a direct measure of success, it is a driving component and indicator of sales volume. According to Amazon, most sellers receive feedback on 10% to 20% of their sales, so the number of units sold is likely to be 5x to 10x more than the feedback shown.
According to the post, all of the data is drawn from Amazon’s seller directories and best selling product lists – there’s one for each product category in each marketplace, including Amazon US, UK, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Canada, India, Japan, China and Mexico.
Outdoor Equipped is managed under a family owned and operated specialty retail organization that also includes Enlightened Expressions for religious Jewelry, Elite hero for tactical products, and Best Brand Boots for footwear.
The outdoor apparel company works with dozens of popular brands (as seen below) including Dickies, Wolverine, and Helly Hasen to offer equipment for a variety of outdoor adventures, everything from weekend camping to surfing and hiking.
We spoke with Dan Ryan, Accounts Manager for Mayo Retail Services, LLC, on Outdoor Equipped’s recent success on the Marketplace and how they plan to stay competitive in 2016.
Q. How was Outdoor Equipped founded?
A. “The business was started because we recognized a shift in the retail landscape and an opportunity in selling products that we are passionate about.
Brick and Mortar stores have been on a steady decline and we recognized that Amazon was going to one day dominate the marketplace.
As a company we decided to facilitate being Amazon experts as well as opening a brick and mortar store to capture the customer experience.
We recognized that building a brand and creating relationships with suppliers would help drive our success as well as a footprint in our hometown Wilmington, NC. By opening a brick and mortar store we now have a face for our brand.
Further, we launched a beautiful website, outdoorequipped.com, to help showcase our suppliers and their brand story to our customer base. We knew once we had a successful store and website paired with our continued success on Amazon that the sky would be the limit.”
Q. When did you first realize it was essential to build a presence on the Amazon Marketplace?
A. “We recognized from the beginning that Amazon would one day drive the retail landscape because it is a site that is fixated on the consumer.
Executing the strategy of being the best of the best on Amazon was our ultimate goal through seller metrics and customer service.
We knew the Amazon marketplace would provide challenges for many retailers because of the optimal customer experience that Amazon guarantees.
It was also apparent that our company needed to do more than build a presence on the Amazon Marketplace, but that we needed to be one of the best on Amazon in customer satisfaction while still representing our supplier’s needs and maintaining the strict metrics Amazon imposes on its sellers.”
Q. Which Amazon advertising platform have you seen the most success from?
A. “The most successful Amazon advertising platform for us has been Sponsored Products.
It’s easy to create ads as well as quick to gauge the success. We determine where to invest our marketing dollars based on our consumer or target audience.
We take the time to educate ourselves on where and when our customer is and we execute the marketing strategy.
There are so many different marketing avenues and platforms today, sometimes it takes a little trial and error to determine what works. We aren’t afraid to try something new.”
Sponsored Products is one of the most powerful tools for driving discoverability and incremental sales for Amazon sellers.
At CPC Strategy, we know the most frequent Sponsored Products inefficiencies stem from bid levels, keyword matching and optimization, campaign differentiation and structure. Because Amazon is a constantly evolving marketplace, remaining stagnant in your marketing strategy is no longer an option.
To learn more about Sponsored Products, check out our recent Amazon series, Sponsored Products Phase Campaign development including:
- Sponsored Products: Product Content Evaluation
- Sponsored Products: Automatic Campaign Implementation (Phase 1 & 2)
- Sponsored Products: Manual Campaign Creation (Phase 1 & 2)
Q. How do you credit your success in the Amazon Marketplace?
A. “Staying educated, being flexible and acting quickly. In the eComm landscape it is important to stay ahead of the curve because things can change quickly and if we do not adapt with the changes, we will not be an industry leader.
We challenge ourselves to learn something each day about the retail/eComm landscape.
We ask ourselves what is the latest software or application that may help us execute our strategies. The result has been the compilation of proprietary software and procedures that help drive our business decisions.
We call this our “secret sauce recipe.” Every company needs one and we are always changing ingredients.”
What we liked about Outdoor Equipped on Amazon:
Easy to navigate – The outdoor apparel and gear company has an organized storefront with a product menu on the left side. Once you click on a category for a listing page the entire menu follows as well – making the shopping journey more enjoyable.
Detailed listings – We also noticed every product offers multiple clear and large images in combination with detailed descriptions including model, size, color and more.
Sponsored Products Video: “Optimizing Your Amazon Sponsored Products Strategy“.
Q. Why are customer ratings so valuable to Outdoor Equipped on the Amazon?
A. “Customer ratings are valuable because they speak to who we are and how we conduct business.
We believe in the brands we represent and the suppliers we have built partnerships with.We know that the customer base today is the most educated customer base to date. They research and read reviews on product and sellers performance.
Obtaining testimonials from customers is important because we want them to share the positive experience they had in shopping with us.
Our strategy is to provide some of the best customer service so we are not afraid to ask our customers what they thought about their shopping experience.
We ask all customers to provide a review based on their experience. We are confident in receiving positive reviews in which we do.”
Q. What is the future of Outdoor Equipped?
“The future of Outdoor Equipped is to continue to adjust to the marketplace and further our growth. We look to partner with new brands when opportunity arises.
We are constantly looking at the retail space and asking ourselves what we need to do to remain ahead of the curve and be successful.
As we continue to see growth in our customer base on our direct website, outdoorequipped.com, we will continue to work on the Amazon platform due to the simple fact of Amazon’s continued success. The numbers speak for themselves, Amazon dominates the retail marketplace.
To be a successful retailer in the eComm marketplace one must have a great understanding of the Amazon platform.
Strengthening our core customer base on our direct website and at the store level will always be important but understanding Amazon and representing our partnering suppliers to retain the integrity of their brands is a balance we feel is very important to achieve.
The future of Outdoor Equipped is limitless, as long as we maintain the mindset of adapt or fail we know we will continue to be successful and an industry leader.”
For more on how to optimize your Amazon Sponsored Products strategy, email [email protected]