Are you an Amazon seller looking to win the buy box? This is a make-or-break challenge for even the biggest Amazon sellers – so don’t get discouraged if you’re struggling too, because the difficulty is getting higher and higher (especially with the increase in Amazon sellers in recent years.
And even if you’re having trouble winning the Amazon buy box, you can always partner with an FBA prep company like ZonPrep to help with consulting – along with reducing overall costs and boosting profitability.
And good news too… because in this article, we’re going to outline the quickest and easiest ways to rank #1 in the buy box, so you don’t have to deal with getting stuck below competitors and waiting for them to run out of stock. Let’s dive right in!
Use this outline to skip to any section of this page:
- What is the buy box?
- Why is the buy box so important?
- 1. Understand how pricing impacts the buy box
- 2. Prep your items to avoid bad reviews & high return rates
- 3. Maintain account health & build positive seller history
- 4. Provide top-tier customer support
- 5. Do everything possible to decrease shipping times
- 6. Ditch FBM and switch to FBA (or SFP)
- 7. Reduce stockouts
- 8. Avoid defects and chargebacks
- 9. Upload valid tracking on-time
What is the Amazon buy box?
The Amazon buy box is a coveted spot on the online retailer’s website. It’s the box that appears above all other search results and is highlighted in blue, which signifies that it’s an Amazon product. The buy box is where customers can add items to their shopping cart, and it’s also where Amazon derives the majority of its sales.
In order to be featured in the buy box, a seller must meet Amazon’s stringent requirements (as we’ll touch on below). If there are several sellers offering the same product, then Amazon will choose the seller that best meets its requirements and buy box factors – determined by their algorithm.
The buy box has been a key component of Amazon’s business model since its inception. In fact, Jeff Bezos, Amazon’s founder and CEO, has said that the buy box is one of the most important innovations in e-commerce history – and it’s one of the reasons why Amazon sellers fight so hard to win it over competitors.
Why is the buy box so important?
When you win the Amazon buy box, you’re not only increasing your sales, but also your profitability and ability to grow. The buy box is a key part of Amazon’s algorithm and helps to move products through inventory faster. This gives you an edge over competitors who are not winning the buy box.
There are many factors that go into winning the Amazon buy box (as we’ll discuss below):
- Shipping time
- Product availability
Ensuring that your product is competitive on all of these factors is essential to winning the buy box. There are also multiple ways to optimize your listing for the buy box:
- Using high-quality images
- Providing detailed product descriptions
- Enhancing your store’s branding (when shoppers click on your store name)
If you’re looking to increase your sales on Amazon, winning the buy box is a great place to start. By focusing on the factors that influence this coveted spot, you can start seeing improved results quickly.
1. Understand how pricing helps you win the Amazon buy box
Pricing is one of the most important factors when it comes to winning the Amazon buy box. When shoppers are looking to make a purchase, they want the best deal possible – and Amazon will always prioritize the cheapest price. If your product is priced higher than your competitors, you’re less likely to win the buy box.
There are a few things you can do to make sure your prices are competitive. First, check out your competition and make sure your prices are comparable. You can also consider offering discounts or using price-matching guarantees to make sure you’re always offering the best deal.
Another thing to keep in mind is that your prices may change over time. If you notice that your competition is lowering their prices, be sure to adjust yours accordingly – and consider using pricing tools & software to automatically adjust your price. By keeping your prices competitive, you’ll increase your chances of winning the Amazon buy box and driving more sales.
2. Prep your items to avoid bad reviews & high return rates
It’s no secret that Amazon needs products with great reviews and low return rates – and it’s also a major factor in ranking #1 for the buy box.
Keep in mind – selling with FBA is a great way to get your products in front of Prime members, but it can also lead to negative reviews and high return rates if your products are not properly prepared.
An FBA prep company can help you avoid these problems by inspecting your inventory for damage and preparing it for shipping. This ensures that your products arrive at the fulfillment center in good condition and are ready to be sold – without additional penalty fees or costly removals.
An experienced FBA prep service will prepare your products for Amazon’s fulfillment centers. They carefully inspect your inventory and make sure that everything is ready for shipping – along with packaging your products in a way that minimizes the risk of damage during transit. This is why most FBA sellers prefer to outsource FBA prep to a 3rd party, because you can rest assured that your products will arrive at the fulfillment center in good condition and ready to be sold.
3. Maintain account health & build positive seller history
When it comes to winning the Amazon buy box, maintaining account health and building positive seller history is key. This is because Amazon looks at a variety of factors when determining who should win the buy box, and having a healthy and positive account is one of the most important.
Some of the things that Amazon takes into account include your order defect rate (ODR), feedback score, and customer satisfaction ratings. If you have a high ODR or low feedback score, you’re less likely to win the buy box. And if you have a large number of complaints from buyers, this will also work against you.
On the other hand, if you have a healthy account with a good feedback score and high customer satisfaction ratings, you’re much more likely to win the buy box. This is why it’s important to always aim to provide excellent customer service and keep your account in good health. By doing so, you’ll be well on your way to winning the buy box more often.
4. Provide top-tier customer support to rank #1 in the Amazon buy box
Offering great customer support is another huge factor that goes into winning the Amazon buy box. When customers have a question or issue, they want to be able to get help quickly and easily. If they can’t get help from the seller, they may end up returning the product or going to a different site to make their purchase.
Customer support is important for a number of reasons:
- It shows that the seller cares about their customers and is willing to help them out – leading to higher reviews.
- It helps build trust with the customer. They will know that if they have a problem, the seller will be there to help them solve it (which means lower returns).
- Good customer support can lead to more sales – which builds velocity and establishes seller history. When customers are happy with their experience, they are more likely to come back and make future purchases.
Selling on Amazon can be a lucrative business, but only if the seller provides great customer support. Offering excellent customer service is one of the best ways to set your business apart from the competition and win the Amazon buy box – especially with the amount of sellers that provide awful support.
5. Do everything possible to decrease shipping times
This section is more important for FBM sellers – and it’s why you should consider SFP (seller fulfilled prime).
There are a few reasons why fast shipping is so important when it comes to winning the Amazon buy box – with the first reason being that Amazon has a very strict delivery policy. If an order isn’t delivered on time, it can get downgraded in the search results, which means that it may not be as visible to customers. This can be a major blow to sellers, especially if they’re competing against other sellers who offer faster shipping.
Keep in mind – customers are more likely to buy from sellers who offer fast shipping. In fact, a recent study found that customers are willing to pay more for quick shipping times. This means that if you can offer faster shipping than your competitors, you’ll be more likely to win the buy box and sell more products.
Overall, it’s clear that timely shipping is essential for winning the Amazon buy box. If you want to stay ahead of the competition, make sure that you offer quick delivery times to your customers.
6. Ditch FBM and switch to FBA (or SFP)
When you’re selling on Amazon, winning the buy box is essential to success. And one of the best ways to win the buy box is by using FBA instead of FBM (we cover this in our FBA vs. FBM pros and cons article too). Here’s why:
- FBA gives you credibility as a seller. When buyers see that your item is being fulfilled by Amazon, they know that they can trust Amazon to deliver the product. This increases the likelihood that they’ll buy from you rather than from a competitor.
- FBA makes it easier for buyers to purchase your product. Since Amazon is a fulfillment center, buyers can be assured that they can get their item as quickly as possible. This increases the chances that they’ll make a purchase from you rather than from a competitor.
- FBA can help you win the buy box even if you’re selling a used item. When you’re selling a used item, it’s important to have good seller ratings and a high number of sales. But even if you don’t have those things, using FBA can give you an edge over your competition. That’s because Amazon will fulfill used items for free, which gives you an advantage over sellers who are fulfilling their items themselves.
If you’re using FBM, at least consider switching to SFP – since Amazon treats SFP and FBA with similar priority. It’s one of the best ways to ensure success on Amazon.
7. Reduce stockouts
If you’re frequently out of stock or your inventory is low, then you’ll likely lose the buy box to a competitor. This can be costly, as the majority of sales on Amazon come from the buy box. Losing the buy box can also lead to fewer sales and a decrease in revenue.
The second reason why having sufficient inventory and avoiding stockouts is important is because it can help improve your seller rating. Your seller rating is a metric used by Amazon to determine how trustworthy your account is. The higher your seller rating, the more likely customers are to buy from you.
A low seller rating can cause customers to be hesitant to purchase from you, which can lead to lost sales and reduced revenue. Keeping a high seller rating is essential for success on Amazon, so it’s important to make sure that you always have enough inventory to meet customer demand.
Cash flow & supplier relationship
These are the 2 main reasons for stockouts and low inventory – especially when they both occur at the same time. Never assume every supplier is competent and looking out for your best interests… because many of them will neglect their relationships with customers like yourself. And on top of that, make sure you always have sufficient capital on-hand to continue replenishing inventory – so that you don’t hit zero and lose the buy box.
8. Avoid defects and chargebacks to win the Amazon buy box
When it comes to winning the Amazon buy box, preventing defects, chargebacks and disputes is a major key. This is because any of these can lead to a loss in sales, and can end up costing the seller money.
Let’s take a closer look at why avoiding these is so important:
A. Defects can result in lost sales and a bad reputation for the seller.
If a product has a defect, it can lead to a loss in sales. In addition, it can also give the seller a bad reputation, which can be difficult to overcome. As a result, it’s important to do everything possible to avoid defects.
B. Chargebacks can lead to financial losses for the seller.
Chargebacks can also lead to financial losses for the seller. This is because when a chargeback is issued, the seller is typically charged a fee by Amazon. In addition, the seller may also lose the money that was initially paid by the buyer. As a result, it’s important to do everything possible to avoid chargebacks.
C. Disputes can lead to a suspension from Amazon.
Disputes can also lead to a suspension from Amazon – and it’s hard to regain the buy box after suspensions happen. This means that the seller will no longer be able to sell products on Amazon until the dispute is resolved. As a result, it’s important to do everything possible to avoid disputes.
9. Upload valid tracking on-time
When you sell items on Amazon, you MUST use valid tracking information to win the buy box – because it ensures that your buyers receive their orders. If you do not use valid tracking information, your buyers won’t be able to track their packages, which could lead to them being unhappy with their purchase. Also, if you do not use valid tracking information, you may lose the Amazon buy box for your items.
Make sure that you upload verifiable shipment tracking in order to avoid any issues with your sales and keep the Amazon buy box for your products.
Final thoughts on how to win the buy box on Amazon
It’s clear that winning the Amazon buy box is a coveted honor for any seller – because it can truly make-or-break your success. As the featured seller on Amazon, you receive increased exposure and sales opportunities. Refer back to the factors above that go into winning the buy box – because it takes strategic thinking, hard work and dedication to be successful. With a little bit of know-how and perseverance, you can be on your way to winning the buy box and boosting your profitability.