Are buyers fed up with Amazon too?


#47

>I didn’t say my sales were up on amazon

Well, yes you did. Or strongly implied it in your first response to the OP on this thread (which is about Amazon customers and sales), viz:
>Sales are up last year on the previous year so in answer to your question - no.


#48

+I was trying to see how medium sized or larger sellers were faring in the current climate.+

I would class myself as medium sized - Last year our sales on Amazon from 1st of Jan to 29th of march was £209,244 this year exactly the same period and it’s £151,212.

We sell Toys and Consumer Electronics, Amazon’s restrictions have affected us slightly but we have found that our best sellers are just not getting as many sales anymore.

I have also found my eBay sales have gone up slightly and hands down the customer service is 100 times better, so much so I actually enjoy selling on eBay but every customer service issue on Amazon stresses me out the thought of having to deal with seller support.

Edited by: Jeremy on Mar 30, 2017 9:04 PM


#49

Yes hence my reply to that question.

Amazon.

Not you as a seller.


#50

Thanks for that Jeremy. The more you see posts on the forum the more you see that previously successful sellers with good FB and metrics are losing sales on Amazon. Obviously its not just the smaller sellers either going on your sales figures.

I cannot claim to know the definitive answer to but the common theme running through most posts apart from a few is sales down on Amazon dramatically and either up or at least holding steady on eBay.

so much so I actually enjoy selling on eBay but every customer service issue on Amazon stresses me out the thought of having to deal with seller support.

This is another reason I want to move back to eBay, we actually were a top rated seller on eBay with steady sales and a FB of about 24,000 (compared to the less than 3,000 on Amazon). We left because at the time eBay was constantly shifting the goal posts and life was being made a real hassle for sellers. Amazon seemed a haven of tranquility after the upheavals on eBay. Now it seems the tide has turned and eBay is the place to be for the smaller and medium sized seller.

I am reopening a shop on eBay on Saturday and unlike Amazon it was a pleasure dealing with seller support. All the support staff for UK are either based in Ireland or the USA and seem to be much more savvy about issues sellers face. I had a pleasurable 20 mins on the phone chatting the other day about stores etc. On Amazon its a complete waste of time phoning or emailing seller support.


#51

Go on admit it, you are out of your comfort zone confused by the in depth analysis and complex financial wizardry on display here


#52

To sum it up - selling on both platforms - my sales on Amazon are still way higher - However if feels that Amazon are working against the sellers whilst eBay are working with the sellers.

That’s it in a nutshell for me, Amazon is no longer a place its pleasant to sell for anyone whose chooses not to go down the FBA route to line Amazons pocket. As I have said before, I sell books because its something I love doing, I could have made far more money staying in my previous job but chose to make less and enjoy life more.

I love books, I enjoy in the main dealing with my customers and over the years have made real friends. We choose our stock with care, we try and provide the service of a good old fashioned bookstore combined with the speed and ease of modern internet shopping. Shoving them in a box and sending them to Amazon to get them stuffed into cardboard boxes and mailed out by staff given minimal training and paid peanuts is not my idea of providing good customer care.

I am sure some sellers and buyers don’t care about the level of service provided its all about costs and money but to me its all part and parcel of the pleasure of running my business. I certainly never got into selling books to make my fortune but neither do I wish to become an Amazon robot shoveling out tins of beans or widgets in competition with Chinese sellers.

We got this email today from a customer
“I must compliment you on how well the book was wrapped and how prompt the delivery.
I chose your company because of the high customer satisfaction mark you have. I can now understand why you have managed this. You will certainly be getting the highest mark from me”

We made about £3 on the sale so the service was never about the money, its how I expect to be treated when I buy, so why should I not try and provide the same service myself. The email quote is not meant to brag, simply illustrate why I like what I do and will never go down the FBA route.


#53

Yes - Seeing the same: An accelerating rate of decline that ignores any efforts I make to do something about it.


#54

Ebay does seem to be focusing more on sellers these days. The past couple of years they have made a turnaround.
The forums there are usually good for a laugh, particularly when seeing on these forums how sellers are switching their sales to ebay while reading on the ebay forums about sellers moving from there to amazon. Sometimes for the same reasons.


#55

Almost £9 an hour peanuts? Its not bad for logistics work.
There’s places around the midlands paying a little less for harder work.

£9 is peanuts depending on how much to have to spend to live Martin which is why many people have to claim benefits to live. Its does not matter what job you do in any country you should expect a decent enough wage to be able to live without benefits. And to say that the job they do is not physically demanding is going against all the evidence we have about conditions when working for Amazon.

We’ve ordered quite a bit from amazon over the years, the packaging is similar in standard to other sites

Exactly my point, its poor and the standard of checking before packing is a shambles, judging by the fact that 2 out of 3 books(all supplied by Amazon and packed by them) I recently ordered arrived as obviously not new and such a state you would have to have shut your eyes not to see the damage before they were mailed.

All our books are checked before mailing, we wrap them carefully in jiffy foam, then a sealed plastic bag and then a padded mailer. If they are exceptionally heavy or hard to replace we also wrap some cardboard book wrap around them before going in the envelope. That would not be cost effective to a company striving to be cost effective first and foremost but as we are customer focused not solely driven by profit we think its time well spent to provide the service to our customers.


#56

+Ebay - We left because at the time eBay was constantly shifting the goal posts+

+I am reopening a shop on eBay on Saturday+

We left eBay for similar reasons some 4 years ago, we opened an eBay store again last year and everything just seemed so smooth in comparative to what it used to be and to what Amazon is now.

Good luck with eBay, I honestly think you will never look back.

To sum it up - selling on both platforms - my sales on Amazon are still way higher - However if feels that Amazon are working against the sellers whilst eBay are working with the sellers.

All I can hope is that some big shot in Amazon is reading the forum and instead of shrugging it off they start doing something about it - Unless they are not too bothered about 3rd party sellers.


#57

+That’s it in a nutshell for me, Amazon is no longer a place its pleasant to sell for anyone whose chooses not to go down the FBA route to line Amazons pocket.+

50% of our sales are FBA this still hasn’t protected us in anyway, the only way forward to make money on Amazon would be to sell stock to Amazon and even that would be with tiny profit margins.


#58

Almost £9 an hour peanuts? Its not bad for logistics work.
There’s places around the midlands paying a little less for harder work.

We’ve ordered quite a bit from amazon over the years, the packaging is similar in standard to other sites. Currently looking at a new TV, some nice ones… more a problem of fitting through the front door at the moment so may wait a little bit.


#59

+Almost £9 an hour peanuts? Its not bad for logistics work.+

It may not be bad for logistics work but it is peanuts and that’s the problem with the UK - it is dominated by low paid low skilled work when we need proper jobs paying real wages.

£9 an hour is ok if you live in subsidised housing association or council housing and receiving state benefits but look in any estate agent window and you will never be able to afford to buy a house. Many estate agents around here also require you to be earning at last £25,000 a year to even rent a property.

You can say anything you want about Brexit, time of year or any other reason for the cooling economy but the main drag is our dysfunctional housing market and love of low paid zero hour work contracts.

When you are spending 50% or more of your earnings on rent there is not much left for spending on consumer items.


#60

Well said.

I would also mention that a lot of things sold to Amazon* don’t remain ‘sold’. Returns can have a very interesting effect on small companies.

*Other mega companies exist.


#61

Having sold books for a while now online and dealt with many publishers and suppliers I know exactly how tight margins are for those who supply Amazon. Amazon demand and often get far more generous terms from publishers simply by being big enough to bully them. Most of the very popular titles sold by Amazon at a cheaper price than we can buy them from the publishers, so you have the situation as you do with the large supermarkets that any real competition is spurious and confined to the mega listers only.

I also know that some titles advertise as being available through Amazon are not bought by themselves as the publishers have told me they refuse to deal with Amazon as its simply not worth it on the terms offered. If a book price is high on Amazon supplied by them its either a very slow mover or the publisher will only supply on the same terms the rest of get :slight_smile:

One of the reasons the book catalog is so badly corrupted is down to Amazon allowing some book sellers mainly based in the USA to create lots of bogus listings without using an ISBN and claiming all sorts of ridiculous dates of publication. Then when a buyer searches by using the Title or Author a huge number of bogus listings appear high in the search results at vastly inflated prices. Amazon allowed them in and the reason the bogus book sellers operate in this manner is its the only way they can find to get sales. Very few buyers will know an ISBN of a book they want and thus are duped by the bogus listings.

It makes me laugh when posters on the forum claim that Amazon has brought in such and such a ruling to protect buyers. Amazon must be aware of the bogus listings and yet allow them to continue unchecked and thus many buyers are not given the protection they should have and continue to pay above the odds for books. So far in my few years on Amazon I not seen a rule change that’s been instigated by Amazon other than to protect their profits unless that rule concerns buyers protection AND Amazon profits .

I must stress that any comments I make are my own personal comments about the book trade and as I have no experience of selling clothes. novelty gifts or furniture I would not claim to represent anyone’s views on how Amazon operates for them. I would also like to add as I have before this is Amazons site and they can run it how they see fit. Just as long as they don’t expect me to believe they have my or my customers best interests at heart, its all about profits.

In answer to the original post on the thread, I agree buyers are fed up with Amazon just like many dislike the large supermarkets but they will still use them until they can see an alternative. I don’t suppose Mr Tesco/Asda are very popular outside their own family but customers still use them in huge numbers :slight_smile:


#62

Amazon has developed a controversial reputation in recent years, via media stories about tax dodging, slave labour and fake goods. But all of those things can be levelled at other large sites too, they’ve certainly had their moments.

IMO the rot set in here when they started tinkering with delivery costs, something which represented a huge change at a website where everything had previously been fixed and regulated. Premium Shipping and Prime.

Most buyers will naturally hesitate to pay extra to queue jump, it won’t be their preferred option, and so all Premium Shipping serves to do is remind them how they’ll otherwise potentially wait weeks, so they’ll tend to go elsewhere and get it faster as standard. When we could add something about fast dispatch as standard in the new condition notes, as almost all sellers took to doing, this helped encourage the fishes to bite, and now they notably don’t quite the same.

And Prime, which costs more in the UK, and whose saturation point success will be more from the attraction of streaming media, serves to make those buyers get into the habit of never paying for an Amazon delivery. This means FBA and Amazon continue, but since they won’t sell everything the downside of this is how it affects a far greater number of Marketplace FBM sellers, who are the ones bringing the real diversity of products and help prevent Amazon being a book and gadget site like it used to be.

That, and Amazon charging so much that many items don’t get listed here, will have a knock-on effect on the site’s USP, which has always been +availability+. The more items display “this item is currently unavailable” the less buyers will come to rely upon Amazon.


#63

I can top that, spotted a book sold by Amazon which would take 2/3 months to obtain and supply, maybe they are copying out a copy longhand :slight_smile:


#64

Oddly enough, I joined Prime late last summer and have barely used it.
I mainly signed up for the free postage on sub-£29 items but have found very little in that range that I want or need to buy via Prime.
I still buy almost everything on Amazon from non-Prime marketplace sellers.

The streaming music and video are of no interest to me so I doubt very much I’ll be signing up again this year.

I guess I’m not a typical Prime user but the advantages are not enough to make it worthwhile for me.


#65

Especially when Amazon win the buy box with stuff that won’t be available for 1-4 weeks aka never.


#66

Since the introduction of Prime I haven’t bought a single thing from ebay. I doubt buyers are leaving at all.