It’s no secret that selling on Amazon is getting more competitive & difficult, so in 2019, staying updated on the best practices is more important than ever.
But there’s also never been more NOISE in the digital marketing space, leaving new Amazon FBA sellers confused whether they should build a messenger bot, pay for a search-find-buy launch promotion, or purchase a “Bop It” from the 90’s to bop, twist, & pull their way to Amazon success.
Fortunately, one of the most effective ways to gain reviews, build loyal audiences, & continue to launch products on Amazon is the oldest trick in the book… Amazon packaging inserts.
First, a Warning
Amazon’s policies on whether or not you are allowed to use product inserts to direct them to ANY other website are vague & unclear. In this blog post many of the strategies involve doing this.
While it’s widely seen as TOS safe by many sellers who have been doing this for years, play at your own comfort level as Amazon policies can change aggressively in an instant. In my opinion you are probably safe as long as you strictly follow the list of “No No’s” below, but make a decision appropriate for you & your business.
Why Use Amazon Product Inserts?
Because not using them is leaving the lowest hanging fruit on the table.
No other method… not even the fanciest digital marketing campaign can get something in front of every single purchaser of your product.
Best reasons to get a message in front of your customers:
- Increasing review rates
- Assisting with future product launches
- Upsell other products & incentivize repeat purchases
- Stop 1-star reviews by providing incredible customer support
- Add perceived product value & enhance the experience of receiving your product
Compare cost of email acquisition compared to Facebook Ads…
Let’s say your product insert costs $0.17 per unit & your opt in rate is 10% (4% is normal but with testing & tweaking 30% is totally doable). That’s $1.70 per email subscriber that you KNOW has purchased your product.
Even if you’re getting email opt-ins with Facebook Ads anywhere near that cheap, they’re most likely not going to convert very highly.
Let’s say you boosted the conversion rate up to 30%, how much of an impact do you think that would have on your sales if you could send an email to 30% of your customers whenever you launched a product?
There are a few best practices for all product inserts no matter what strategy you’re using:
- Less is more: It must be clean, easily digestible or else it will go in the trash. Easy to read text, clean small amount of text, & professional look.
- Order competitor’s product to see their inserts. Model their success.
- Use thick index weight paperstock as thin paper is more easily discarded
- Ask supplier to use their print company they work with to avoid logistical issues
- Make design eye catching (visual pattern interrupt) Remember, you’re competing for attention with opening & using your product!
- Offer has urgency, reason to do it right now. If it’s not done now, it won’t be done ever.
- State: “If you have any issues with the product, reach out to us here & we’ll fix it right away” to stop 1 star reviews. Give them Messenger & email option.
- Don’t try to get them to buy on your website
- Review manipulation, no positive review or incentivized review, or any kind of circumvention, even having discount and asking for review on same page
Styles of Inserts
- Small, business card sized
- Personalized style – regular paper stock, stapled together with fake pen annotations added in.
- Dual sided thick stock – one side opt in, other side Value Add
Insert CTA/ Offer
When the customer is first opening the purchase, they are very focused and hopefully excited, to see the product, and you are fighting for their attention with the insert. The customer needs to feel ensured that the value they will receive from you in return for providing their email, is far greater than the risk of having their time wasted or getting spammed.
“Mandatory” User Instructions: Tell people about a “mandatory” instruction guide for the product. Make it actually providing value, for example if people need to follow a certain protocol to get the best results with your product, make a valuable guide that runs them through this protocol.
One Year Buyer’s Club Discount + Scarcity : Offer your customers a 1 year “Buyer’s Club” discount that the must sign up for within 24 hrs. This allows you to benefit from the scarcity while giving them the time they need to be ready for a reorder with you. Customers may not need to buy again or even be sure that they want to yet! But if you get them on your email list, you can make it more likely they will.
Free Trial : Can you offer a trial/ sample size of your product? Think small shampoo or alcohol bottles. This can be a great way to get your product into the hands of qualified customers, and a great incentive for them to provide your email address. It has the added benefit that they may actually use & enjoy your trial size product and make a real order.
Opt In Methods
- “Just email us”
- Text your email
- Facebook Messenger (business Page)
- Landing page
Opt in should be easily done from phone because phone is in pocket, computer may be in another room. – https://www.callloop.com/
- Remind them of any donations to charity and how they helped
- You are small family business
Expert Tips - Michelle Smith
Do you think all Amazon sellers should use product inserts and why or why not?
Product inserts are an excellent opportunity to reach 100% of your Amazon buyers and start their journey to becoming an ongoing customer of your brand. It’s important to understand that your buyers consider themselves Amazon customers, not yours. With product inserts you can get offers in front of those buyers to help convert them into a relationship directly with you.
Where do you think is the best place to drive traffic to with inserts?
As an expert in Messenger Marketing and chat bots, I highly recommend using chat bots as the call to action on product inserts. Chat bots are easy to setup, fun to interact with, and through their interactive nature you can learn from and segment your subscribers. This allows for a customized experience for the subscriber. For example, if you sell a consumable, as part of the opt-in flow you ask what product they purchased, you may know that that product has a certain number of day supply. You can then put them in a follow up sequence a few days before their scheduled to use up their supply and check on their supply and offer a re-order offer.
What strategy have you seen work the best? Give a specific example.
The best product insert strategy should vary based on what you sell. Electronics or products that can be damaged usually benefit from a warranty offer. Supplement sellers could offer a free bottle or a bogo offer (buy one get one). Generally a deep discount coupon offer would be attractive the majority of the time. The point is to make the offer compelling because you need the subscriber to take action.
One client I worked with sold wireless accessories and they offered a bonus warranty on their product inserts. They had over 10k subscribers with over 30% of those subscribers leaving reviews via a general review follow up, not incentivized.
Another client sold supplements and put instructions on the packaging for how buyers could get a free bottle. So far they’ve had over 5k buyers take action and become subscribers.