Faced with mounting competition for marketplace sellers from Shopify and other platforms, Amazon is now helping some sellers to reach out to some customers — albeit through Amazon-controlled emails.
Amazon, which has jealously guarded its control of customer relationships, has launched a tool that allows sellers who participate in its Brand Registry and have a Stores page with followers to compose marketing emails that are sent by Amazon to those followers.
Amazon’s moderation team reviews all emails, and those that are approved are distributed by Amazon. Amazon will tell brands how many consumers opted in to receive emails, but won’t provide names or email addresses.
Users can employ Amazon’s analytics to monitor campaign results.
“Send new product launch announcements, offer promotions, inspire repeat purchases and more” to help drive brand loyalty, retention and engagement with customers and “build your brand on Amazon,” the company encourages brands in a video describing the new Manage Your Customer Engagement tool.
Up to now, sellers could communicate with Amazon customers only for delivery status reasons, through the messaging feature on the Amazon site.
The tool should be particularly helpful for new product launches, which are challenging because Amazon bases their positioning on algorithms driven by past purchase data.
In January, Feedvisor reported that about 78% of U.S. brands now sell on Amazon’s marketplace. More than 350,000 currently participate in the Brand Registry, which helps brands reduce counterfeit sales and also offers other benefits.
Amazon has also introduced other tools to help build brands in recent years, including Amazon Stores, Amazon Posts and interactive videos on product listing pages.