a blog? I thought he was supposed to leave me wanting more?
How To Improve Your Comedy Writing
So after many rounds of communication, the buyer who left the bad review on my Amazon store was gracious enough to remove it. I am now in recovery phase, trying to decelerate the plummeting Amazon numbers I feel were a direct result of that review.
I'm not sure if she ever reads this, but if she does: thank you, Marilyn, for going through the trouble, and I sincerely hope your knee gets better.
Quick backstory on the whole Amazon thing: I had a VERY rocky 2015 and 2016 professionally. Two mergers led to layoffs, and I lost a job I loved because I couldn't successfully manage family and work life (read: LOADS of daily CRM updating during off-work hours). In August of last year, I landed a job with a great company, but it pays only half of what my other jobs have, and so I started looking for other ways to make money in my off-time.
I don't have the capital to buy real estate, nor do I have the knowledge of being able to sink money into stocks that will bloom 20,000%, so I decided on an online store at Amazon.
Long of the short: it's up, running, and very easy. That being said, Amazon is R-I-D-I-C-U-L-O-U-S-L-Y competitive and cut-throat (between sellers), and that creates an atmosphere ripe for false prophets and bad advice people 'swear' will land you "hundreds of thousands of dollars a year."
Enter Jungle Scout.
If you are going to go to anyone for help with your Amazon store - whether you're just starting out or are an old salty with a storied history - Jungle Scout's the place to go. I went with one of the premium services, but they have a free Google Chrome extension that helps you not only choose which products to sell, but also explains the various niches in which to sell them.
They constantly post entertaining, informative, free tutorials on YouTube, and I strongly suggest you heed their advice over all others, especially at the beginning. They're completely approachable, knowledgeable, and charitable (see the whole Jungle Stix campaign), and the best money I've spent in this whole endeavor.
I don't work for them, but I do endorse the hell out of them, so if any of you four regulars who visit this site are looking to open an Amazon store, take two Jungle Scouts and call me in the morning.
I know: not the typical 'bring the funny' post, but even Dave Attell takes a break for a drink during his sets.
Been away these last few (okay, several) months doing some freelance work while trying to get a store up on Amazon.
Amazon is awesome for buyers - AWESOME - but there are a ton of things you've got to understand if you want to open a store in hopes of generating passive income.
The biggst thing: Amazon's efforts to attract, keep, and satisfy customers far outweighs any effort to do the same for its vendors. That's a great thing: as a shopper, you receive unparalleled access to goods, prices, and service from vendors who are competing under ridiculous strains to get and keep your business.
That means if you're selling Amazon, not only are you competing against a million other sellers with coffers ranging from peanuts to Porsches, you're competing for buyers who can leave completely destructive reviews on a whim. A WHIM! Even if they don't use the product correctly or for anything related to its intent, a dissatisfied buyer can CRUSH you, especially in the early stages.
Enter my first negative review.
One of my products is kinesiology tape, an overly competitive (and now, it seems, dying) market plagued with its association to athletic tape. The two are NOT the same, as you can take athletic tape off as soon as you put it on. Not so with kinesiology tape: you put it on and that stuff STAYS, MAN. Mine is guaranteed for three days before even THINKING about coming off.
Some people buy the tape knowing that, and some people don't. I had a buyer who I don't believe did know that difference, and here is her review of my tape, verbatim:
"My skin came off when I removed the tape."
How much more damning can a review get???? "As I peeled back the tape, my skin was flayed from my body as though I had committed perjury against none other than Diocletian himself!"
Since that review, I've sent apology letters, more products to make sure she didn't get a bad roll, comments to her post... all in the hope that we can get to the bottom of the issue and she will remove her review. Her response: nothing. No returned emails, no contact... she just took a sh*t on me and walked off. Dwindling sales, collapsing rank, two thousand dollars of stagnated inventory, and it's all because I believe she THINKS she bought athletic tape, not understanding the difference.
Welcome to selling on Amazon, I guess.
Anyway, site's back up and running, and I'm here if you need me.
I'm Nick. I've never been afraid of getting in over my head, and I've survived every resulting injury from doing so. Played college football in the SEC while running a 5.1 forty at 200lbs, got booed off stage in front of 1,000 people at a 'Latino Laff Nite (I'm not Latino),' rolled with BJJ Black Belts, and got TKO'd by a Golden Gloves boxing champion during a fundraiser for MDA. The closest I ever got to being a real man was when my mom cut me off on the way to the Marine Recruiter's office - in the parking lot.