Why every Amazon seller needs a USP

Without it, you may be missing the boat.

A USP, or Unique Sales Proposition, helps a business, especially an Amazon seller, stand out from the crowd and attract customers. It’s foundational to your business.

The USP is a statement or proposition that communicates the unique value or benefit. It piques the interest and action of your target audience(s). It’s a brand message. A differentiator.

So, what is yours? Start by stepping back and digging into what is unique about your e-commerce business. What message resonates with your target audience and what they want – their needs, preferences and values?

What is your USP

The USP exercise is often treated like a weekend warrior who decides to walk around the block a couple of times vs. an athletic endeavor that requires time, discipline, training and action. Developing the USP usually requires market research and analysis, such as surveys, focus groups, customer feedback and competitive analysis. These undertakings help quantify what motivates your target audience, which then leads you to the unique value or benefit that really resonates.

What are the USP types?

  • It’s free. A common USP (and often overused) is “free” and “fast.” For Amazon sellers (FMB), that’s usually related to shipping, which also helps compete with FBA/Prime delivery. Many customers are willing to pay a bit more for products that come with free or fast shipping. Frankly, is this really a USP in Amazon world where customers expect the product “right now,” no matter what?
  • It’s quality. Another common USP is high-quality products. Brands that emphasize the quality of their products, whether through materials, craftsmanship or performance, appeal to an audience willing to pay more for a product. This is particularly important for products used frequently or have a significant impact on the user’s life.
  • It’s exclusive. Unique or exclusive products can also be a strong USP. Brands that offer products that are not available anywhere else, or that are only available in limited quantities, create a sense of exclusivity and urgency. These drive sales and customer loyalty. This is particularly effective for niche products (a specific demographic or subculture).
  • It’s sustainable. Environmental or social responsibility is a growing USP for brands. Those that prioritize sustainability, ethical sourcing or social responsibility appeal to customers concerned about these issues. The audience is willing to pay more for products aligned with their values. This often appeals to younger consumers.
  • It’s personal. Brands that offer personalized, customized products provide a personal touch and sense of connection with the customer. This can is particularly important for brands offering highly personal or emotionally significant products, such as jewelry or gifts.

Creating and completing your USP

Getting started really means knowing, studying and analyzing your customers. They are your target audience. What is the best way to do that? Talk to customers, ask questions, get honest feedback about pros, cons, strengths and weaknesses. Do the research and delve into their needs, preferences and values.

It’s tempting to take shortcuts with developing a USP. It’s easier to just be creative and come up with a powerful, pithy perspective. While it may be relevant, it is not your USP. It is not a creative exercise, it’s a data-driven research project. It’s also an ongoing effort, not a one-time event. Customers and market dynamics are always moving and evolving. So are your products and brands. Your USP may need to evolve as well. Regularly review and analyze customer feedback, market trends, and competitor strategies. Doing so helps establish a UPS that could even expand into new segments and markets.

Once the USP is defined and delivered, it is a common thread woven into all your sales and marketing channels and touchpoints, from websites and email marketing campaigns to product collateral and tradeshow graphics, your USP is strong, consistent and ever present.

The result? You have a valid, well-vetted USP that resonates with customers. It shares a consistent feature and benefit that builds customer familiarity, trust, loyalty and reputation.

Some of my favorite resources about business marketing, USPs and more include HubSpot, Entrepreneur and Forbes Small Business.

Begin, then refine your USP. This ongoing commitment to know your customers–and knowing what motivates them to purchase your products–ensures your long-term success.

And remember, when Amazon sellers need business advice, ASIN and account reinstatements, even listing optimization and A+ content, they know it starts at Riverbend Consulting. We’re always here to help.

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