Well that leaves a vacuum to fill in terms of education so we’re going to try to help out in that regard.
The first reaction from the repricer companies out there had to be, “oh shit!” Honestly, all of the 3rd party sub service companies out there like AccelerList, Inventory Lab, Profit Bandit, AMZsuite.com, etc could be wiped out in one fell swipe. And for long time, no one thought that Amazon would be interested in perfecting some of the gaps that these sub services filled…until now.
It shouldn’t come as a surprise though because no one thought that Amazon might want to get into the shipping game either, but they sure as hell are. Right now they have and are, buying airplanes and laying the groundwork to cut out UPS and provide their own shipping logistics. Whether that be by drone or airplane.
But historically, when Amazon tries to perfect something outside of just the buying process on Amazon.com, they typically don’t do a great job at it. That’s why AccelerList and other services exist. People will pay a premium for a better service or experience, especially if its positively affects their bottom line.
The Amazon Repricer
OK – so let’s take a look at the Amazon repricer shall we? Below in the picture, you’ll see where you can find the option to use the Amazon repricer. It’s a sub menu option under “pricing” on the homepage of Seller Central.
When you first agree to the terms of the repricer and attempt to set it up for the first time it will look like this:
Just like you would set up a “pricing template” with a 3rd party repricer, you’ll do the same with Amazon. You’ll want to give that template a nickname and then set the pricing rule parameters for it so that it executes (Order 66) your pricing instructions.
Amazon repricer parameters
What’s interesting to note is that the only two options that Amazon gives you in terms of pricing strategies is either playing against the buy box or the lowest price. So you can match or stay above or below each one of those options. 3rd party repricers give you a lot more options so this is what can be argued makes them still a value add that you might be willing to pay for.
Within those two pricing schemes, Amazon also lets you drill down and make a few more detailed decisions based on the following criteria:
- Condition Grade
- Merchant vs FBA
- Feedback Rating
- 3rd party sellers
Have you ever heard that saying before, “…read between the lines?” We find it very interesting that Amazon has chosen these four parameters to further edit your repricer decision. It begs the question if these were the most important parameters all along? Or are these parameters something they are just now placing value on after researching the behaviors of sellers manual pricing or the action of their repricers.
And why is Merchant vs FBA on the list? Can we finally confirm that Amazon does award the buy box more often to FBA sellers over merchant fulfilled? Or is that purely customer driven based on the Prime shipping perk?
After your done setting up your parameters, it’s time to select your specific ASINs to be affected by your new pricing template. Oh, and by the way…you can set up multiple pricing templates. But even with the ability to set up several templates, there is a major, time wasting drawback to the new Amazon repricer.
And that drawback is the ability to set “bulk” select your SKUs within the repricer. So if you have let’s say, 1000 active listings, you can’t just select them all and apply your template to it. You have to literally go one-by-one with all of your SKUs and tell Amazon to reprice that SKU.
OMG! Talk about laborious and that has a lot of 3rd party repricers claiming that the new Amazon repricer is really for the Private Label sellers and not the Wholesale, Online or Retail arbitrage sellers with hundreds or thousand of product listings.
Drawback #2 (the most important one)
But let’s say your a cheap little bastard and you go ahead and manually select all of your SKUs to be repriced by Amazon so you can save some money on the repricer fees from a 3rd party. To your surprise, when you’re ready to set your minimum and maximum price for each SKU, you won’t be able to. Well actually, you will, but it will be capped at 4X the historical average for that particular SKU. Say what??
Yes, it’s true. If you want to take advantage of the new Amazon repricer…Amazon will cap your repricing efforts at 4 times the historical average of that product. So it seems that Amazon is trying to protect the buyer and limit the seller from those crazy high prices that often happen to a product that is actually just pure supply and demand economics at play. Those same economics is what is driving thousands of new sellers to Amazon each year and also wokring to fatten Amazon’s profit margins.
But just like with the recent ASIN restrictions debacle, is Amazon looking to flatten their market and make it more stable? Is this repricer a change strategy that’s part-in-parcel with their ASIN restrictions? Are the warehouses getting too full or are they bringing on too many sellers?
As Amazon explains it:
So what do you think? Is this another smaller piece of the Amazon seller reduction puzzle or is Amazon just making normal market ready changes that make sense?