How Our Pampered Home Became Top 40 Ranked Amazon Seller from the Ground Up – with Tom Sanders
October 22, 2015 93 min read
Without passion in your products or having a great vendor relationship you cap your e-commerce business’s growth. For Tom Sanders, his passion for selling and his beginnings with his family’s vacuum shop, grew his business into a top 100 overall seller on Amazon.
In the sixth episode of Skubana’s E-Commerce Mastery Series where we invite experts of their respected fields to share their best practices for success, our host, Dr. Jeremy Weisz of InspiredInsider.com interviews Tom Sanders, founder of OurPamperedHome.com.
In this episode you’ll learn how Tom Sanders's passion for competitive selling gave him the edge of owning his product’s brand and excelling it through the ranks of Amazon.
During his rise to a top 100 seller on Amazon Tom Sanders learned:
- How careful product selection and a growing relationship with his vendors allowed him to save money and test his markets
- How using mistakes as learning experiences for his employees can not only influence his their growth, but inspire them to stick with the Our Pampered Home family
- How ads and being on multiple sales channels boosted his business more-so than SEO content
- And the importance of utilizing Google Ads and PLA’s in giving your business the edge it needs for your brand’s growth
- How the costs and contractual agreements of Software can affect decision making.
Raw Transcript: Tom Sanders of OurPamperedHome.com
"We won't even go for terms on vendors when they're what we would consider smaller. There are some that we will but you really, you have to be diligent about paying them to keep that relationship because as your business grows you don't want them to say well your line of credit with us is $5000, $10,000 whatever it may be, and your orders now are $25,000. And them not scale your line of credit because you're slow paying your invoices… You have to be able to rely on them as they rely on you. They get your product, you get them money. You do that, everything goes perfect." (00:11:17)
"Not knowing how to buy and what to buy. You can't buy just what you think is going to sell. You have to have some hard data. And if you're buying something just to try it out, don't go taking pallet loads of them because if it fails, if it doesn't work, if there's no margin in it, whatever the reason may be, you don't want to be stuck with something. We'll see vendors, not vendors but other sellers going out and buying stuff that we look at and just say there's no rhyme or reason to what this person is doing. And why are they buying some of these items that by all means, probably are not great sellers?" (00:12:23)
"You've got to get your products advertising out in front of people because SEO is a long winded, very time consuming process, which we still struggle with, to get a lot of natural search traffic. But oddly enough and we can see through Google Analytics and so forth how many people search for our brand and come straight from Amazon and come straight from eBay and come straight from Newegg to our site and purchase something there. That some people maybe don't have Prime or maybe they don't want to shop on eBay but that's where Google took them to. They see that we sell it, they come to our site, they buy it. But as far as getting people to your website, you cannot beat Google. Does anybody use a different search engine today? Their stuff, Google, Google Shopping, their PLAs, I feel like their text ads are having some headwinds but you can really advertise through their Google Shopping. And once you start using it, it’s cool. People see a picture, they can compare prices from 8, 10, 12, 50 different websites, depending on what the product is, and pick which one suits their needs, whether it's by who has a lot of reviews, who has the best price, who doesn't offer tax in their area." (01:19:21)
"You want to deal with the problem and use it as a learning experience. If you ship something, if you ship something to Amazon FBA and you ship 20 of them and you label them wrong, you stick them wrong and you get a customer that says, "I got the wrong thing," say, "What did you get? Is it something that really could be...is it a picking error? What does the sticker say on it?" If not, don't wait for that next customer to tell you, "Hey, I got something wrong as well," and you sell through them and get them all as a return. Pull them back. It's not that much money. It's a whole lot better to bring them back, assess it, get them back to Amazon once you know they're right than just gambling on the next 20 customers getting something wrong. And if it is wrong, pull everybody aside. Literally, I'll go out in the warehouse sometimes and just yell, 'Hey everybody, get over here. We're going to learn from this in 60 seconds or less.'" (01:38:42)
"You first have to have an idea of what you want to sell and sell something that you like. Be passionate about it. Know that you're not going to get bored of it two weeks from now and just get lazy and sloppy. The second is organization. That as an e-commerce retailer, and we suffer from it sometimes as well with the volume that we do, is staying super organized. Knowing what you have, where you have it. That organization will make your life so much easier in the long run." (01:46:27)
Written By Chad Rubin
Chad Rubin is the co-founder and chief executive officer of Skubana, a multichannel e-commerce software the enables brands to unlock growth by unifying their back-office operations.