6 important measurements for keeping your online store active
While there are many tips and strategies for online selling, making money as an e-tailer isn’t an overnight project. Time and hard work are required to succeed, but if you’re willing to invest, you can certainly make it happen. One of the worst outcomes, however, is to reach your sales goals only to have your store shut down. For more information on how to plan, build and execute your entire marketplace seller strategy, download the Marketplace Sellers Guide.
For Amazon sellers, an easy way to keep your store active is by maintaining a positive Account Health indicator. Maintaining a positive account health is essential to keeping your Amazon store active, and is dependent on 6 measurements:
- Order Defect Rate – Amazon Target: <1%
An order made from your store is considered defective if it receives a negative feedback, an A-to-z Guarantee claim, or a service credit card chargeback. If you are having trouble reaching this target, utilizing Fulfillment by Amazon, or FBA, is a great way to achieve a low order defect rate for your store.
- Cancellation Rate – Amazon Target: <2.5%
This is the number of orders cancelled before shipment, divided by the total number of orders in the same time period. Make sure to provide detailed product descriptions and images to ensure your buyers are comfortable with their recent purchase, and be prompt in answering questions from recent buyers.
- Late Shipment Rate – Amazon Target: <4%
This is the number of orders shipped later than the estimated ship date, divided by the total number of orders in the same time period. To reach this target, it’s crucial that you optimize your shipping and logistics, and make sure not to overreach with your goals. It’s better to set an estimated ship date that you know you can reach, rather than advertising an attractive ship date that you fail to deliver on.
- Policy Violations – Amazon Target: 0%
Each Amazon account has a notification section, which includes important updates and notices from Amazon. Make sure to actively check your account’s notification section and adhere to all policy updates. Failure to check your account notifications and comply with Amazon policies will result in the closure of your store.
- On-Time Delivery – Amazon Target: >97%
This is the percentage of packages received by the estimated delivery date. As a seller, your responsibility is to make sure that items are shipped promptly, and by a reliable shipping service. Saving money by using low cost shipping methods can help in the short run, but may risk the long term closure of your store.
- Contact Response Time – Amazon Target: >90% less than 24 hours
Amazon sets a high standard for customer service, and expects all 3rd party sellers to maintain those standards. You should make sure that all messages and inquiries are replied to as soon as possible, and certainly within 24 hours.
Reaching these targets can be especially difficult during the holiday season, as stores see a huge increase in traffic. A pro tip is to have a few extra hands on deck during the holiday rush. If this is your first holiday season, it’s better to be over-prepared than to be under-prepared and have your store shut down during the largest sales period of the year.
While these measurements are for the Amazon.com marketplace, Amazon sets the industry standard for customer service and satisfaction. If you are selling on other marketplaces such as eBay, Etsy, or Wish.com, optimizing your store for these 6 measurements is a great way to ensure that your store stays open.
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