What is Amazon Exclusives? How Can You Succeed With This Program?
Amazon Exclusives is a program that allows you to sell unique products on the Amazon platform while still being able to sell through your own e-commerce store outside of Amazon. Amazon will also promote your products for you and, if you join FBA, they will fulfil orders for you, too.
One of the reasons they called it ‘exclusives’ is because the products cannot be sold on any marketplace other than Amazon.
The program was put in place to help e-commerce sellers of innovative products increase their brand awareness and take a bigger share of the market they’re in.
Amazon Exclusives helps brands grow in the following ways.
Amazon offers promotional services to get your brand seen on their marketplace, mainly through display ads. You design them and set your minimum advertised price (MAP), which is the minimum amount you’d like to sell your product for, and they’ll run them.
They’ll also promote your products through mentions in the Exclusives catalog and in emails. You can also feature your product in Lightening Deals and Best Deals.
If you want to create video content, you can use their video editing software and get personal guidance from your brand advocate.
Your brand advocate assists you with the promotion of your brand. They’ll help you design your ads and give you advice on how they should be run. You’ll also get guidance on how to launch your products onto the marketplace for maximum exposure.
You’ll also receive guidance on how to design your listing to help you convert as many visitors into sales as possible.
You can take what you learn from your brand advocate and apply it to your e-commerce store off Amazon as well. Once you see how to run successful paid-ad campaigns, you can apply those foundational precepts to other advertising platforms, although the execution will be different.
To further incentivize e-commerce owners to use the Amazon Exclusives program, they offer brand protection. This means no other seller can offer the same product as you on the Amazon Exclusives marketplace. Amazon implemented this rule because copycats can have a detrimental effect on your business.
Access to FBA and Prime
Using FBA is a great way to diversify and strengthen your business.
When you expand your e-commerce business to include Amazon FBA, you make it more secure. If you have only one or two suppliers and one of them fails to deliver, then you won’t be able to sell some or all of your products until you find a new supplier. Adding the monetization that comes from Amazon FBA means that if that happens, you’ll still have sales coming from Amazon to keep your business going.
If you also have access to Amazon Prime, you can offer 2-day delivery, which is highly desirable to consumers and helps establish your brand as an authority within your niche.
Does it Cost Anything to Join?
To sell on Amazon, you have to pay 5% on all sales. This includes sales of the same product outside of Amazon.
You also pay a deal fee of $150, but only if you exceed 10 deals a month.
Amazon also has performance requirements.
To ensure only quality brands are trading in the Exclusives marketplace, Amazon requires your e-commerce store to meet certain standards before you’re accepted onto their platform:
- 2.5% or less customer cancelation rate
- 1% or less order defect rate
- 4% or less late shipment rate
If you can prove you meet these performance requirements, you will be considered for the program.
In the next step, you’ll be judged on certain business standards. Amazon wants to know you have a quality product and brand. To determine this, they’ll look at the content of your website, including product reviews and the content you have for the product, such as the copy and photos.
After all is said and done, though, the main requirement is that you do not attempt to list your product on any other marketplace.
How to Get On Amazon Exclusives
Amazon will look at their checklist when assessing your business, but there are some things you can do to increase your chances of being accepted.
The whole idea of Amazon Exclusives is to offer products that are hard to find anywhere else.
The more you can differentiate yourself in the market with the functionality of your product and the design of your brand, the better you’ll fit the program.
Show How it Helps Customers
Remember, it’s always better to ‘show’ than ‘tell’.
If you can show Amazon that your product solves a common problem, then you give yourself a better chance of being accepted.
Show off your customer reviews describing how your product has helped them. If you have an email list, you can even run a survey asking your customers to share their stories about your product. If they’re a fan of your brand, they’ll be more than happy to do so.
You’ll still want to ‘tell’ Amazon the important information that supports your evidence. Talk about the product from your perspective, including how you think it helps customers and why you decided to sell the product in the first place.
Share All the Intimate Details
The better Amazon understands your product, the easier it is for them to make a decision on whether it’s a fit for their marketplace.
Tell them about the materials it is made from, how it works, what it’s best used for, and anything else you can think of – you can’t go into too much detail.
Typically, you will get a decision from them within 6 weeks. If you don’t hear back, you may have been rejected.
You can, however, reapply so consider why you may have been rejected by looking through their requirements again and make changes.
Is it Worth Joining Amazon Exclusives with Your FBA Business?
If your business is suited to this program, it can be a good way to grow your brand and establish yourself in your niche.
Your products will be on the world’s largest online marketplace. Not only does that create visibility, you’ll get access to all the advanced promotional features Amazon has to offer. And being featured in Best Deals and Lightning Deals, as well as the Exclusives catalog, builds the authority of your brand.
It’ll be protected from copycats, and you’ll get personalized assistance to help grow your brand presence.
It isn’t all sunshine and rainbows, however.
Exclusivity Works Both Ways
Although you do get brand protection, the price you pay is being limited to only selling on the Amazon marketplace. Of course, if your business is exclusively FBA, then you can’t sell on other marketplaces anyway, but if you’re an e-commerce owner, this limits your marketplace options because you won’t be able to sell on the likes of eBay and Walmart.
6-Month Minimum Commitment
When you sign up for Amazon Exclusives, you must sell through this program for a minimum of 6 months. That means you’re putting a lot of eggs in one basket, and you’ll still have to pay the 5% fees even if you aren’t getting a lot of sales, reducing your returns.
Another requirement of the program is paying 5% of all sales of your products listed on Amazon Exclusives. This includes sales made off of Amazon, so make sure you know how many sales you’ll need to make this a profitable venture.
Who Can Get The Best Results From This Program?
Amazon Exclusives is ideal for businesses looking to reach highly specific audiences, which can be difficult to achieve through organic marketing tactics, like search engine optimization (SEO), that are less targeted.
And, of course, Amazon is the world’s largest online marketplace, so your audience is likely to be there, and the program is designed to help you reach them.
It’s also good for sellers who would like to expand their e-commerce store using Amazon FBA as another revenue stream. This is a great way to diversify and strengthen your business, and it gives you access to Amazon Prime, further building the desirability of your products.
Amazon Exclusives is not so good for sellers of more general products, as the costs associated with the service would likely make it counterproductive. Products have to be really innovative to get attention on this marketplace, as Amazon Exclusives attracts a different kind of audience.
If It’s Successful, You’re Ready for the Next Step
If you increase your profits as a result of this program, you will increase the value of your business.
That means you’ll probably receive a bigger payday if you decide to exit – you can see what your online business is worth now with our free valuation tool.
It’s also a good growth strategy for an e-commerce business you’ve just acquired. If you’d like to see what e-commerce businesses are available on the market right now, head over to our marketplace.