Do you sell products on Amazon? Or are you thinking of opening your own online store on the site? Well there is good news for you; this week Amazon announced the launch of Amazon Pages.
What is Amazon Pages?
Amazon Pages is a new web retail service that allows you to make a customized e-store from a set of three templates. The templates allow you to list all your products, display ‘posts’ of content alongside products, or just list ‘posts’. Products are displayed using their ‘Merchandising Widget’, which is a separate install, and allows customers to make purchases directly from your e-store.
The new tool will also allow you to customize the URL, for example amazon.com/my-company. This means an end to the random collection of numbers and letters, which are currently displayed when clicking on a retailer. You will also be able to add social media buttons which link to your own pages.
What Other Gadgets are Available?
- Amazon Post. Once registered with Amazon Pages you will also have access to Amazon Post, a social media dashboard where you can post messages and updates to your Facebook profile and to your Amazon ‘Page’ at the same time. You will also be able to write a series of posts at one time and scheduled to go live over a few days.
- Amazon Analytics. You will gain access to Amazon Analytics, which will help you monitor the traffic to your page and your customer’s behaviour when they are visiting your e-store. Data is broken down into easy to understand charts and graphs so you can assess the products or ‘Posts’ that create the most positive reaction.
How to Apply
Amazon Pages, Posts and Analytics are all free to use. To start using the tools you must first submit an application to Amazon. Once approved you will gain access to the tools.
Alternatives to Amazon Pages
Although Amazon Pages brings great new tools and gadgets to those already selling on Amazon, it is important to know the alternatives out there.
One of their direct competitors in the small business world is Shopify. The main difference between Amazon and Shopify is that you can host the Shopify on your own domain. This means that your store URL will be my-company.com rather than Amazon’s amazon.com/my-company. There are both pros and cons to this.
The pros of being associated with Amazon are that you can trade on their name and use their users to become aware of your business and products. You have an instant audience, who already trust the brand of Amazon and what it supplies to them.
The cons are that your business is reliant on this third party brand for recognition. This means that should Amazon choose to change its support of the tool or should you want to establish a larger web presence, you have little or no ability. Hosting your store on your own domain will also mean that Google will attribute the authority of your content and products to your own website, not to Amazon. Translated: your website will rank better for terms included in those descriptions.
Before making the decision about which service to use, first decide what your objective is for starting an online store, then assess how much time you can dedicate to making it work. Only then can you choose the tool that suits your needs the most.