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INTRO How Amazon Ruined My Life

Discussion in 'Forum Introductions (Who are you!?)' started by BNeumann, Mar 8, 2018.

  1. Real Deal Denver
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    Real Deal Denver Silver Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED Speedway Pass

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    Words to live by. I now am closer to the meaning of life and finding true happiness.

    Very similar to this deep thought is the not too popular saying: When life hands you lemons, get some vodka to go with it, and kick back.

    I don't know which of these sayings I like more.
     
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  2. johnp
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    johnp Gold Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass

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    This is exactly how I feel.

    My mind is completely blown by how many people aren't building their own email list and customer database. Most email platforms today have amazing CRMs built in. That's where I'd put most of my focus. At least you control way more than you do with Amazon.

    And with email you can even download your email list and put it on a floppy disk in a vault somewhere in case the email platform goes under. You really can't take an email list/ customer database away from someone. But with Amazon, you can't even do that. Maybe I'm just crazy though.
     
  3. BNeumann
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    BNeumann Navigating The Seas Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER

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    Read my post. Sarcasm.
     
  4. Kak
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    Kak Capitalist Pig Read Millionaire Fastlane FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR

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    Of course you are correct about the numbers... however “making decent money” on someone else’s marketplace and owning an actual business are, in my opinion, two very different things.
     
  5. MakeMoreMoves
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    MakeMoreMoves Bronze Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass

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    Ehh...don't really think amazon is "the best" place to start a brand. Amazon seems to have a commodiziting effect. It seems big brands were already big when they went on amazon. As in, they distinguished themselves from a commodity by branding off amazon making them resistant to 3rd party marketplace commodization.

    I do see tons of brands on amazon and in my eyes most are generics even if they got their own label.

    Some industries like high end fashion where their exclusivity is part of their value proposition, I would think get negative impact from amazon. They may increase their sales short term, but the long term brand value will decrease due to reduce exclusivity and ease of obtainment.

    The best products in amazon I believe are functional physical products where branding isn't as important like fashion.

    Don't know if commodizting or commodization are actually words. But you get the point.

    Just my opinion.
     
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  6. BNeumann
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    BNeumann Navigating The Seas Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER

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    I think Amazon can work for some brands, but what I've learned is that it only works as a supplemental channel. You can't necessarily go all in on Amazon or FBA and expect your brand to succeed. That was probably my major mistake. My brand and even product have validity but the platform was not the right avenue for it. I'm working now on removing Amazon from the equation and will post on how that turns out. So far I'm optimistic about the outcome in salvaging my brand.
     
  7. Kak
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    Kak Capitalist Pig Read Millionaire Fastlane FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR

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    How to build a company where the best ideas win

    Thought this was interesting... Ray Dalio’s take. ...

    “To be a successful trader one has to bet against the consensus and be right.”

    “To be a successful entrepreneur one also has to bet against the consensus and be right.”
     
  8. Andy Black
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    Andy Black Any colour, as long as it's red. Staff Member Read Millionaire Fastlane FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR

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    I don’t like following the herd - too many assholes and BS.

    (Just me being funny...)
     
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  9. biophase
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    biophase Legendary Contributor I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR Summit Attendee

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    You don't build a brand on Amazon. But it's dumb to not use that channel. When I launch a brand on Facebook, I link to my website. But guess how many people go to Amazon and search for my brand and buy it there? Don't you think there are a few to many? If this didn't happen, I wouldn't see a blip on my sales whenever I posted on Facebook.

    Would those people have bought if they didn't find it on Amazon? I don't know. Amazon is convenience of not having to take out your credit card and just clicking a few buttons. Checking out on a brand new website sucks and takes so much more time.
     
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  10. MoneyDoc
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    MoneyDoc Gold Contributor Speedway Pass

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    I like how a lot of the posts saying Amazon is not great, amazon is saturated, amazon is not a real business, amazon isn't a good place to start a brand - are from people that don't even have a sellercentral account.

    For those who think amazon is too saturated, or you can't build a real business on amazon, take a look at the numbers my new brand did last month. This is a 6 month old company. And by the way, I don't have an amazon business, I have a business that sells on amazon. Show me one other platform that can bring me these numbers for my company in 6 months.

    Imgur

    I don't understand how anyone can say amazon is not a good place to start a physical product brand. You're either ignorant or completely naive.
     
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  11. biophase
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    biophase Legendary Contributor I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR Summit Attendee

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    They don’t like money.

    I just launched a new company 2 weeks ago and it’s done $3k on Amazon with no ppc. I did $4k on my website.

    So without Amazon would I have captured that extra $3k?
     
  12. biophase
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    biophase Legendary Contributor I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR Summit Attendee

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    Just one more example because this happened yesterday.

    Yesterday, I ran out of stock on one product on my website. Guess what happened? That one product spiked on Amazon in sales. So the natural thing that my customers did when my website was sold out was either Google it or go to Amazon to buy.

    Think about how much you'd be missing out if you only sold on your website. How many people searched and found out about my company on Amazon and then bought on my website later? Who knows? But I can tell you the answer would be zero if you weren't on Amazon.
     
  13. BNeumann
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    BNeumann Navigating The Seas Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER

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    Heck yeah I'm putting it on Amazon. But I went too deep depending on their entire ecosystem for my business which was my mistake. It didn't work as good as I wanted. And I don't think they are the only channel to use. They have a lot of people ready to buy, but also as previously mentioned the motivation for many is to find the cheapest option which commoditizes much. This did not work to my particular advantage. Lesson learned.
     
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  14. Real Deal Denver
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    Real Deal Denver Silver Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED Speedway Pass

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    THIS is the kind of conviction and focus I LIKE!!!!

    You have it figured out, and you are killing it, man!

    I'm right behind you. Thanks for the screen shot, and, of course, your commentary.

    I need a shot of confidence and your post came at precisely the perfect time.

    Rep+
     
  15. Real Deal Denver
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    Real Deal Denver Silver Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED Speedway Pass

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    Astute business management. Ninja selling. Way to ride that wave bro!

    This is what separates the so-so managers from the pros!!

    Rep+
     
  16. WorldImperator
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    In my opinion problem is, that everybody now is using JS and is finding same products... how many same spatulas, flasks, ginders and cat scratchers can be listed and be profitable?

    I had two products which I almost started there - from first I resigned, because initial investment of 10k was too much for, second was really with small profit.

    Of course you will see everywhere success stories of single mother in depression with 10$ in pocket...
    But if Amazon is so great, why Scott Voelker and many other succesfull businessmans are spending so much time on investing in podcasts and selling training? Are those gurus not gurus in real life to push their business to make millions per month...?

    In my opinion, only expensive products (at least 8$ per piece from manufacturer) or invented by ourselves can give us good and long lasting business. We do not need to reinvent the wheel, but just making something better, and selling another same product of which 15 are already on price war on Amazon...
     
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  17. Greg R
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    Greg R Act, Assess, Adjust Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass

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    This goes back to focusing on those things that you can control.
     
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  18. Tom Coffee
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    Tom Coffee Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane

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    I have found in my businesses I have started that it requires a hell of a lot hard work and long hours to be able to make good money. Good money to me was over $500,000 a year gross.
    When I started by first a business back in 1986. It took 2 years to do that my myself at first, I added people as I grew. I was in a service and sales business. I started with $3,000 cash and a 30,000 loan . It take a lot of time learning also. As you have to wear many hats when you start your business at first. I have used that money from that first business to build other businesses.
    I had some of them fail. It is a constant learning curve in business. The market place changes quickly now days. You have to keep up and keep trying new things.
     
  19. Johnny boy
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    Yup
     
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  20. HyperX
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    HyperX New Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED

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    .....I need to figure out how to do this/ develop a product that's viable. Like most here are saying that generic spatulas etc don't sell. This leads me to ask if everyone is using JS how do you go about finding great products/niches to start with?
     
  21. million$$$smile
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    million$$$smile Platinum Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass

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    Selling on Amazon can be a way to make money, but there is still a lack of Control.

    With over 2 million sellers worldwide, Jeff Bezos can still pull the plug anytime on your revenue stream if you are relying on Amazon for your Brand.

    I too sell on Amazon and do fairly well. Anyone that attended the Summit saw my numbers.
    But I don't sell more than 25% of my own Branded products on that marketplace.

    Why?

    Mainly because I don't like the idea of selling a product to someone that is not my customer.
    They are Amazons. I, in reality am just a fulfillment center for Amazon's customer. I don't like giving up 15% to an outfit that I cannot retain as a customer, nor have the choice to decide whether to refund, or resend the product out, or to call and find out why they did not like the product.

    I would much rather wholesale my own personal brand to others and let them deal with the headache. To me, it gives me more Control. I won't sell to a distributor unless they stock our product in a B&M. That way, I feel that they also have opportunities to market my Brand locally, which they seem to like.

    BUT, I am satisfied to sell 2000 other products on Amazon that are not my own brand for the simple reason that I am ok with being part of the Big Yard Sale. I realize they are not my customer. I also realize that Amazons TOS can and has changed over the interim. "Changes to fee structure" is usually just a nice euphemism for fee increases. Again, a lack of Control.

    I read somewhere that China sellers more than doubled in 2015 alone on Amazon. I see the handwriting on the wall. Amazon is courting them. Now, why would I want to work for someone that is working hard to build new competition for me?

    I decided to put more effort and money in developing something that has greater Control, albeit websites, or vendors or B&M's.
    I can service those customers.
    I can show them other products.
    I have the last say on refunds, resends, and upgrades.

    Or not.

    And in the meantime, take some money off the table and build something that clearly has better control for me.

     
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  22. Kak
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    Kak Capitalist Pig Read Millionaire Fastlane FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR

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    Bump...

    More people should read this.
     
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  23. Walter Hay
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    Walter Hay Legendary Contributor FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR

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    I agree that investing in your brand is vital to success.

    Too many people think they have invested in their brand simply by following the advice of countless "experts" who tell them to private label by "slapping on a label". Some are even worse and use the term "sticker" in place of label.

    The term "Private Labeling" is grossly misused and misunderstood. Most often it is taken to mean putting a label on a generic product so that people will know that it's yours, not your competitor's.

    That will do nothing towards building a brand. At best they will identify your product, but brand recognition will be practically non-existent.

    Thought needs to be given to the total marketing concept not just advertising. This means brand name, slogan or motto, the color scheme and its consistent use, the logo, label or product marking method, packaging that can sell as well as or in same cases even better than the label, font types and their proper use - for example so many people seem unaware that ALL CAPITAL LETTERS ARE HARD TO READ AND TURN MANY PROSPECTS OFF.

    After all that, if your total marketing concept has not included product sourcing and all logistics from that point to your customer's door, plus a generous return/refund policy, you won't have a lasting brand.

    I know that the approach I have outlined has worked extremely well for me - importing business franchised in 4 countries and operating for over 20 years - but others might like to contribute ideas on what else should be covered.

    Walter
    P.S. Definitely start with Amazon if it suits your marketing plan, but don't forget to set up your own eCommerce store in tandem.
     
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