Amazon isn’t content to simply monopolize online retail in America — their sights are set on the entire world. Though their share of the market is significantly smaller overseas than in the US, Amazon now delivers to over 50 countries in Europe, expanding its delivery area by 6X since 2010. The largest markets for Amazon EU are the UK and Germany, which together generated more than $23 billion in revenue in 2016, accounting for more than 17% of the company’s total sales.
Though European workers may not be keen on Amazon’s draconian labor practices, European customers are becoming more and more comfortable with low prices and free two-day shipping. Many brands that sell internationally are beginning to see the importance of creating quality content for the global spectrum of Amazon sites. By proactively investing in content in growing markets, brands that stand out on the digital shelf can get a leg up on the competition and ensure their products show up early and often in search results pages.
Here’s what brands can do to begin the process of creating or improving their Amazon EU content.
Step 1: Perform a Content Audit
Companies that want to expand to Amazon EU sites need to perform full content audits. This means analyzing what you have and what you need for every product page, and marking whether the existing content is correct, incorrect, and when it has been completed or updated. It’s only after you know exactly what your company has that you can begin to effectively address what it needs.
For A+ content, part of this process may also entail keeping up to date with specific Amazon content requirements for different countries, but for basic content, the rules are pretty universal. The best practices for EU pages are going to be the same as best practices for US pages. What are these best practices you ask?
Step 2: Ensure Your Content is Optimized for Best Practices
Does your product page clearly explain what your product is, what it does, and provide a clear visual image? It’s doesn’t seem like rocket science, but you’d be surprised how many brands aren’t adequately providing this essential information to customers on their product pages. Basic content, which includes the “hero image,” product title, bullets, and 1-paragraph product description, is the backbone of any successful product page. Customers who don’t get the information they need simply aren’t going to buy the product, no matter where they live in the world.
But offering informative and concise basic content is merely the minimum requirement for a product page to receive a passing grade. Enhanced content offers expanded imagery and text and greater control over the layout of the page, not only delivering a better shopping experience for customers but increasing sales and organic search rankings in the process. Now that basic A+ content is free for all vendors, brands don’t have much of an excuse anymore for not creating enhanced content for their top selling products. A+ modules have been available on Amazon EU sites since 2015.
For brands that are already selling products on the US site, they can and should leverage as much (quality) existing content as possible. If the company has already performed due diligence getting their US pages up to snuff, then the process of disseminating that content to other countries becomes much easier. Part of the content audit should include finding which applicable content already exists online and can be used as a cornerstone for international pages.
When all of your content is collected and optimized, then you can begin the process of translating and uploading for different international sites.
Step 3: Keep Your Amazon EU Teams in the Loop
Optimizing your international content shouldn’t be a set-it-and-forget-it strategy. When you create new content for US pages, be sure to loop in corresponding EU team members, and try to build US and EU pages at the same time for consistency. Doing this not only creates a more efficient workflow but also ensures your branding is on-message everywhere at once. The easiest and best option is to have all of your US and global content managed by a single agency who can ensure uniform and centralized content creation for every retail channel.
Step 4: Invest in Amazon Advertising Campaigns for EU Pages
Amazon Advertising is available for brands selling in Europe, but currently, the budgets and competition on the platform are much lower than in the US. This is great news for brands looking to get a foothold in a market that is sure to grow. Brands can use what they’ve learned from competitive US campaigns and inject those keywords into international campaigns and product pages, giving them an immediate head start over competitors just starting out with the service. Brands can expect lower volume due to the lower competition, but can also expect lower spend and high upside.
Editor’s Note: On September 5, 2018, Amazon rebranded its advertising platform. Amazon Marketing Services changed to Amazon Advertising and Amazon Advertising Platform changed to Amazon DSP, among other changes. This blog post was changed on October 10, 2018 to reflect those changes.