When I started on Amazon a couple years ago, I had very little knowledge. I knew nothing about pay-per-click ads on Amazon. I knew nothing about researching keywords and finding the highest ranking ones. I didn’t even know what a giveaway was!
I knew none of it. Funnily enough, the other day Oleg said, “I want to know some of your strategies, because you’ve been very successful on Amazon. When did you do AB split testing?”
I said, “Oleg, if you had asked me that six months ago, I wouldn’t have even known what you were talking about.”
He said, “Well, Seth, you are the only person I’ve met who has been this successful on Amazon without using standard ways of promoting your product.”
That was a huge encouragement to me. My ignorance and lack of knowledge when I started worked in my favor. If I had gone back with my knowledge now, I wouldn’t have picked the majority of products I launched—many of which failed but enough succeeded to make me a ton of money.
It took me a long time to get my products ranking well. I started to explain my strategy to him. It’s a very simple strategy, but encouraging. I see it as guerrilla warfare: you don’t have a lot to work with, you don’t have many weapons, so you just have to buckle up and make things happen. I started thinking through what has helped me the most.
Before I tell you what helped me the most, keep this in mind: getting reviews, checking keyword rankings, and using PPC ads are all very important. I use these all now and they help a ton. But it goes to show that you don’t have to have a ton of knowledge to succeed in this industry. I sure didn’t. I was as embarrassingly ignorant as you can get. But now I am succeeding.
Here’s my strategy: studying the negative reviews of my competitors. These tell me how to make my product better and how to fix problems the competitors have so that customers will buy mine instead of theirs. It sounds almost bad, but it works.
Second most important is writing a badass product description. Be willing to take hours to write it. Write it emotionally. Don’t focus on numbers and features, such as a 10 inch thickness. Focus on benefits: does the thickness of the pillow allow your neck to relax and not become sore? Focus on the emotional benefit to the buyer. If you’re selling a beauty product, don’t just state the color. Say how the color will make the customer’s eyes pop and dazzle when they use it.
Focusing on negative reviews to build my products off the weaknesses of competitors and writing emotionally engaging product descriptions have been the biggest helps to me. Taking high quality product photos and researching the heck out of potential products to find ones that are selling well are also very useful.
When I started, I didn’t use any tools. I had scraps and bits of information. I decided I was just going to make it happen: for me, it was survival. If I didn’t have make this happen, I would not be able to pay for food for my family. I was either going to make it or die: I had no other options.
You have to have that mindset as an entrepreneur. You can’t assume that if you do the right steps and follow this path you’ll have a really easy life. It’s not like that.
You have to go into survival mode. You have to get angry, concerned, and anxious. You have to lose some sleep. You have to become aggressive and ask yourself what you need to do to jump into the trench and make it happen.
You have to tell yourself you’re going to lose blood, hair, and skin because you have a lot of skin in the game. You’re going to sweat, suffer, and cry, but that’s okay.
Sometimes you have to just go out there, kick ass, and work as hard as you can. Then, later, your knowledge will grow and you’ll become smarter and wiser about it.
I’m not discouraging knowledge at all. I didn’t know how to do anything when I started, but if I had known a bit more, I would have done a lot better. The question isn’t a lack of knowledge.
It’s a lack of self-discipline.
Do what it takes. You can make this happen. It doesn’t have to be on Amazon: It could be on eBay, or Instagram, or your own website. All of these things have ultimately brought me margin in my life to do things I love. Today I haven’t touched a single thing online to make money, but it still makes me money.
Let me know how I can help you succeed. That’s what I enjoy most. I love being a coach, helping people, motivating them, and calling them out on their BS when I see it. Have an awesome day.