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September 19, 2019
min read
Written by: 
Christian Otto Kelm
Ecommerce Basics

My Q4 on Amazon – Black Friday Hype and Christmas Hysteria

A guest article by Christian Otto Kelm. Every year again I look forward to the big hype around the end of the year. Each time more relaxed than the year before. Amazon really sells itself off during Cyber Week and Prime Day, and then repeats it again on Black Friday with a self-glorifying final discount on EVERYTHING. Anyone who wants to earn money with this has to be one of the big players, and even they prefer to sell off leftover goods rather than real cracker deals. So it's all the more surprising that so many customers actually save all year round in order to find bargains during this period.
In 2017, I tried to buy a notebook cheaply, but even two months full of offers never brought the perfect bargain. Personally, I always just wait for the warehouse deal discounts that happen just before. Within a very short time, the entire electronics and toys section is sold out.

So what should a retailer or manufacturer even aim for in Q4 to stand out from the rubbish of the leftover ramp?

Fact is - you always earn more during Christmas! Unless your core season is summer... What no one can externally influence is what makes a good gift, this is spontaneous and trend-based - so hardly predictable. From my point of view, it therefore only makes sense in a few areas to store keywords such as grandma, grandpa, gift, Christmas gift, mum, mummy, dad, daddy, etc.. The A9 already manages to recognise quite well what the gift trend of the customers is. Of course, it is very good when tableware suppliers use Christmas decorations in the pictures instead of spring decorations and shoes or clothing are provided with bullet points on snow, cold, wind, and water resistance. Agencies like Bernstein Partner have developed the BEPA Suite for this purpose.  The product content changes automatically for an event like Cyber Monday, Black Friday or X-Mas.  The title, description, USP, and keywords are automatically adjusted and your product takes advantage of the current relevance of the event to gain more relevance itself.

The big bidding in Amazon retail is not worth it

It is also important to pay attention to keyword volatility and to launch your nutcrackers not in November, but already in October. This is necessary to be able to create relevant visibility at all. The old tricks from 2017 hardly work fast enough for good rankings with search terms.
I cannot endorse the big bidding in the advertising sector. It is enough to simply increase the budgets in the core business due to the high traffic. You don't have to increase the bids fourfold.

It would be clever to place clean advertising in the search phase. This begins long before the actual events. Those who convince with good content and early offers do not need the media attention of special events and sell outside the competitive period. The same applies to the most underestimated buying period in Q4 itself. The week after Christmas and the first two weeks of the new year. Away from Amazon's after-X-Max sales and New Year Weeks, you can cleverly use marketing to target all those voucher redeemers or gift exchangers. For the first time after almost a month of Christmas stress, customers are shopping for products for themselves. Targeted advertising before and after the big events is sometimes cheaper and much better to play out due to the changing demand from "buy for someone" to "buy for me".

In 2018, this should also be combined with AAP, Amazon's display advertising format. The retargeting functions and the possibility of advertising Christmas shoppers are particularly helpful here. Agencies such as AMALYZE even start their offers even far below the campaign budgets of Amazon itself. Financing partners like Myos help to have the right products in stock in sufficient quantities. One of the basic rules on Amazon applies - Never run out of stock!

About the author:

Portrait of Christian Otto Kelm

Christian Otto Kelm, founder and managing director of Content-Keyword-Management, is one of the experts for Amazon and Amazon SEO in Germany. He built up Amazon as a channel for the gaming accessories manufacturer Speedlink, and later worked for the Amazon agency factor-a and the Amazon retailer KW Commerce. Today, he supports sellers and vendors on Amazon - both in an advisory and operational capacity - according to the motto "help people to help themselves".

Editor's note: Guest articles and interview responses do not necessarily reflect the opinion of MM. They are the basis for a mutual exchange around the diverse world of Amazon trade and e-commerce.

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