When we talk about online trading or eCommerce services, the primary part of your planning is product research methodologies and selection criteria, an aspect that can never be taken for granted. Choosing the right product is directly linked with the destiny of your eCommerce business.
Many sellers hold a preconceived idea of research as a headache. But product research doesn’t necessarily need to be complicated. Take an example of Amazon product research, which we will explain in detail in this article.
Product Research in a Nutshell
The term “Product Research” is the idea of searching for trending products to sell on any eCommerce platform such as Amazon or Shopify storefront. This process involves conscious observation and analysis about what to sell for maximum profit. This framework sounds very simple: search products that can easily be sourced on a low budget and generate high profit. But it is not as simple as it sounds due to numerous important factors that must be kept in mind to make rational decisions.
For example, the target market, product category, market rivals, costs of goods, and other charges will all be casting shadows for every person in a different way.
Importance and Need of Product Research
To list potentially good product choices requires a lot of research time and analysis. Choosing random items irrationally based on your likes or inclination and expecting them to sell on Amazon quickly will not work. Because what you like or dislike is different from what people want to buy.
Growth comes from making smart decisions. Suppose you are making irrational and blind decisions regarding product selection without any analysis or observations. In that case, you are likely to fail in an attempt to launch and grow your eCommerce or dropshipping business.
One of the primary reasons Amazon FBA sellers perceive product research so hard is because they don’t know how to eliminate distractions and stay focused. No doubt, it’s pretty evident as not all products are equally good and investment-worthy. Before you begin searching for products, you must learn how to filter good and bad products separately before opting for your inventory.
How to Classify Products as Good or Bad
This is where you can start making a difference and standing out. The most important difference you can outline before categorizing good & bad products is good products sell immediately. As you need customers to survive, this aspect is your only lifeline for long-term and profit-oriented survival or growth.
Meanwhile, it is crucial to take your very own seller’s perspective into account while selling an item. It’s challenging for you to sell Air Conditioners despite being a trending item because you are most probably working from home, and items like AC, Television screens, etc., are challenging to store due to capacity issues. Another problem is brand restrictions which are likely to apply to almost all electronic items.
You have to leave these items for giant sellers and companies to make your initial eCommerce process simple.
Good Products possess the following attribute matrix:
- Portable, robust and handy to pack and ship
- They fall in the price range of $10 to $50 – drive a flux of sales
- Unbranded but qualitative with higher profit margins
- Products having low market competition (That’s how you make your debut in the market)
By keeping these factors in mind, you will filter out the products that are not your cup of tea because they lack the attribute to meet this criterion. By filtering unwanted stuff, you will notice your research start getting simple and free from distractions of all kinds.
Let’s discuss the eCommerce research methodology that can make your research more profit-driven and straightforward. All eCommerce platforms such as AliExpress, Alibaba, and Amazon bombard your venture with so much competition. You can’t just enter the market of your choice with the category you want to sell within, choose a product even though it fits the qualification criteria, outline it and sell it with high-profit margins.
Just focusing on trending markets or categories won’t work for you. For instance, you might choose to sell silicon mobile cases. Apparently sounds like a good idea but highly risky. You’ll find thousands of sellers all selling mobile cases even at more aggressive prices. Instead, you should start with slight variations within the same category. For example, a customized design, for example, mobile cases with trending seasons, movies, or user’s choice instead of just a simple mobile case.
By doing so, the search volume will drop to very low, but you will be targeting a particular type of market and can filter out much of your rivals. Broader markets have more competition than smaller ones.
Top Product Research Methods For Sellers
Research is the key to find potential and profit-driven products on any eCommerce platform. This can only be achieved by ensuring the right direction and knowing exactly where to start searching.
The first place to start your research is Amazon itself. Being more specific begins with the Amazon Bestseller lists. This list also comes amidst a categorical division of products as gift items, books, electronics, clothing, etc. This feature provides deep and fruitful insights into the category of products you should be considering for your debut.
Start exploring the Amazon Bestsellers page; this is where you can get most of the ideas depending upon your circumstances and capabilities.
All the tabs on top of the New Releases, Movers & Shakers, Most Wished For, and Gift Ideas are pretty helpful for you to research effectively, so refrain from skipping those tabs.
Utilize the Bestsellers page to explore the top 100 bestselling products in all categories. The venture here is to dive deep into the ocean of sub-categories without missing anyone out in a hurry. Don’t stop on the 2nd or 3rd choice. Keep exploring. Choose an item to explore more and try to find a similar but improved version of the same product.
Go to Hot New Releases Page to find which items the masses are selling right now and what products will release shortly. Like the tactic we recommended for the best seller’s research, don’t apply brakes on the starting items; continue exploring and outlining the products similar to those just announced or released.
Movers and Shaker’s tab showcases which items have attained an increase or decrease in demand over the last 24 hours. This is a great insight. For instance, you have a product in mind, but you want to monitor its trend and life for a specific period. Refrain from observing for too long as it may cause you to miss the perfect timing and product type.
Explore the Most Wished and Most Gifted tab to check the frequently ordered items or regarded as gift items. The benefits of doing this practice save you both time and effort by examining market segments rather than the individual product.
Communicate with different Vendors
Suppose you are already selling any item on any eCommerce platform like Amazon and having linked with a supplier. In that case, one of the most convenient and budget-friendly product research practices is to directly communicate with your supplier to get an idea about both trending and falling products as per market dynamics.
Your supplier is already aware of these insights and will not show any reluctance to share these fruitful insights with you. Additionally, the more products you buy from one vendor, the lower your cost will be as a long-lasting relationship, and consistent purchases from the same vendor can bring you some significant discounts as well.
Research about Your Rivals
Another effective technique is to make a list of best-performing products through Amazon’s advertising model Amazon PPC. Amazon sellers who are taking risks to invest money in such campaigns can get notable RoI from these products or not bother fixing huge expenditures on these campaigns. When you notice ‘sponsored’ titled on any Amazon product, this means that a specific item is a paid-for advertisement.
Utilize Google Trends
Another state-of-the-art tool you can utilize for initiating your product research is Google Trends. You can also set alert notifications to get 1st hand updates about trending or popular topics.
Keep in mind that this platform will not provide you insights specifically about ‘products’ but will help you follow trends and stories. You can build your hypothesis about which product can be helpful in contemporary scenarios.
On the other hand, you can manually explore Google Trends. Simply select your targeted country, search for the desired product to see all the related results involving trends, insights, and other useful patterns. These search results can assist you a lot in giving a purposeful lens to get an idea about trending products and market dynamics based that you can merge with your mainstream product research tactic.
Explore the ‘Customers Also Bought’ & ‘Frequently Bought Together’ Tabs
Jumping back to Amazon, another superb Amazon research methodology explores the sections under the primary listings to give you purposeful insights related to the product.
You’ll need a basic how-know of the specific market segment and items you’re up for, and this technique will not only enable you not only to grasp the idea about buying patterns of your potential consumers but also provide you the space to research and develop a unique package of bundled items.
People prefer to buy multiple items in a single shot rather than purchasing each item separately, so Items listed frequently bought together can be merged to sell as a bundled package.
Explore eBay’s Trending Lists
To effectively sell products on any eCommerce platform, eBay proved to be the most lengthy information base for examining trending and sales-promising products. If an item is active and performing well on eBay, it’s most likely to attract customers on other eCommerce platforms like Amazon.
Explore through AliExpress
This is another platform; sellers typically ignore during their product research routine. AliExpress is one of the biggest eCommerce platforms where you can enjoy free access, making it a viable option for product research.
AliExpress lacks a dedicated page or tab for best-selling items, but you can still explore which trending products by following these simple steps:
- Select a category, for instance, Mobile Accessories
- Use ‘sort by orders’ to outline the top-selling items
- Filter the results to display top rated products
You’ll now see all the top-selling items in your selected category with the peace of mind you have filtered all the products rated four stars or above by previous customers.
This eCommerce product research guide will lead you to a profit-oriented conclusion if you smartly follow the criteria mentioned above and remember to segment your research practice to stay on a distraction-free and competition-free path. Refrain from putting too much time and effort in an attempt to mess your inventory with vast and costly products that you should avoid as a starter.