Boost Oxygen and Amazon
Recently, I had the pleasure of talking to Sergey at SellerScale about the ins and outs of selling Boost Oxygen on Amazon. You can read a transcript of the interview here, listen to the podcast here or watch the video here, but I thought it would be helpful to expand on a couple of the ideas I touched on in the interview. While Amazon is undeniably a massive actor in the world of eCommerce - and the current Coronavirus and COVID-19 pandemic is only helping to reinforce that - the bigger question remains: do you have to sell on Amazon to be successful?
Do you have to sell on Amazon?
The short answer to this is obviously an emphatic, No! Boost Oxygen is an excellent example of this. Founded in 2007 at the beginning of the eCommerce boom, Boost Oxygen elected to pursue a brick-and-mortar strategy to get product out and in front of consumers. Amazon was only pursued relatively recently as a potential sales channel. Success and sales and profitability existed at Boost Oxygen long before Amazon as a sales channel.
Boost Oxygen has a turbulent history with Amazon (I get into it a bit in the interview so I won’t waste time here), that has resulted in many changes to our selling strategy on the platform. Currently, we have a handful of trusted and authorized resellers who are able to get our supplemental oxygen in the hands of customers in ways that we, personally, can’t.
Technically, Boost Oxygen does not sell on Amazon (except for an odd product here and there). That does not mean that we are not active on Amazon, and I think that is a major point that I didn’t make in the interview.
You don’t have to sell on Amazon, but you have to be present
We can’t take our hands off the wheel no matter how many trusted resellers we have on Amazon. Even though Boost Oxygen does not currently sell Boost Oxygen through Amazon, we are still in charge of our brand and brand identity. This is especially crucial when it comes to product listing management and price monitoring. While Amazon might not care about the price of a product (even when sellers are gouging), a brand like Boost Oxygen has to protect its product from becoming commoditized and its brand identity from being maligned by bad actors.
Much of the work that I and others at Boost Oxygen do on Amazon surrounds protecting our brand. Whether our admin assistant, Mick, is responding to as many reviews as humanly possible, or I am using all means necessary to stop resellers from gouging prices, or anyone else is responding to claims that our product is just air (it’s not), Boost Oxygen is constantly active on Amazon.