In this episode of the External Traffic For Amazon Sellers Podcast I’m going to define and compare traffic and audiences and why understanding the difference is vital for Amazon Sellers above all other eCommerce entrepreneurs.
In these early episodes of the podcast I’m trying to bring you the core concepts that sit behind the strategies that we’ve observed, modified and implemented for my eCommerce brand, and this episode is no exception.
My aim is to get you thinking beyond the surface and a little more deeply about the advice you follow and maybe the actions you take.
What is the difference between traffic and an audience?
Traffic is largely made up of:
- Existing customers
- Retargeted website visitors
- Fresh leads
An audience is made up of:
- People who you get to communicate with again and again, with their permission, based on them having opted in or having already purchased from you.
Why is the difference important?
The existing, generic advice out there – almost now accepted as a mantra – “Build an audience” doesn’t take into account YOUR business.
What does YOUR business need?
This generic advice is borne out of the idea that an audience is higher converting – they’ve already bought in a lot of cases, so hey… that’s probably true.
And fresh traffic, new leads are way back at the top of the funnel – so they’re “expensive” to get from top of the funnel, right the way to the bottom where your “audience” already is.
In eCommerce however, this view needs to be interrogated.
An audience might be high converting, but if they’ve already converted and your product isn’t a consumable product, what’s the next sale going to be?
There are largely 4 different types of products, in relation to different sales frequencies:
- High frequency consumables – Protein shake powder maybe
- Low frequency / seasonal consumables – diaries
- Products forming a complimentary range or collection
When are Audiences Awesome?
Audiences are great for frequent repeat purchases.
They’re not bad for low frequency purchases.
They can be ok for products forming a complimentary range, but there’s going to be some resistance moving an audience from one product to another, to another (and you need to be able to launch the products to keep up with having something new to offer!)
Audiences are poor for non-consumable products, your only hope is to try and get referrals from Audience members who you might not have had the chance to build a lasting relationship with in a single transaction.
When is Traffic Amazing?
Traffic on the other hand.
Consisting of “Fresh Leads” is great for 3 and 4, products forming a complimentary range and non-consumable products.
They might be lower converting than an audience for a high frequency consumable, but if you’re not selling high frequency consumables it’s irrelevant.
For MANY products, and many Amazon Sellers, fresh traffic actually makes a lot more sense than an audience.
Deciding which you put the effort into, or how much effort you put into each, is strategically significant for your business.
Knowing how to drive traffic to your Amazon Listing profitably is the key challenge, but that’s for another episode!
- Think about your product and what will perform best in terms of ROI.
- There may be lots of evidence to support high conversion rates for audiences of customers, but this might also be because of the PRODUCT PURCHASE FREQUENCY.
- Trying to extract the value out of an audience that’s already spent is wasted effort with diminishing returns (unless you can launch enough products to keep up, adding complimentary range items like Away Travel)
- Fresh leads (qualified leads) are likely to be a richer and more fruitful source of sales for an Amazon seller with a product that doesn’t have a high frequency purchase cycle.
Brett Curry and Austin Brawner on the Ecommerce Influence Podcast talking about Why Some Brands Scale Up While Others Flop
In this episode they provided some really interesting Ads costs, but also talked about Away Travel as a case study and how they leveraged good Lifetime Customer Value by launching MORE and MORE products to extract the value from their list.