Success stories, whether they are about athletes, artists, or striving entrepreneurs are essential. They show the start and the turning points. They show the ups and downs of the journey. These stories also show us that no matter how hard we are struggling now, there is still a way to turn things around.
Today I am going to introduce you to an entrepreneur from Lithuania.
Let’s call him Thomas. A bright, hard-working man who, like many others, was building an Amazon business to thrive.
Thomas moved to the UK back in the day to provide for himself and his family. He picked up a 9 to 5 job that paid as little as £600 per month. As you can imagine, this was barely enough to cover the basic living needs. Looking for an extra source of income, Thomas joined the Amazon Seller tribe and started building his side business.
Like many hungry entrepreneurs, this man thought he could learn and run it all by himself. He tried to do it as a one-man-band. But every member here knows that Amazon’s Marketplace can be a harsh space. Especially if you don’t have the resources to experiment at first. Even when Thomas applied for loans, the banks could offer him the minimum, if anything at all.
With two heavy burdens on his shoulders, Thomas couldn’t balance the busyness of the regular job with the growth of his Amazon account. He had to burn through most of his capital in 2019 with a number of unsuccessful PPC campaigns. All the money he put in that year brought him no success.
It was at this moment that a turning point was needed.
By this time, I had known Thomas for a while. We had a couple of insightful conversations. He got familiar with my services, I got familiar with his case. He was eager to learn the Amazon business by himself until the mishaps at the end of 2019.
When Thomas realized his account needed professional help, he approached me. He took a leap of faith, and he invested the little profit he had made to work with me and my team.
We started by auditing his whole account. Every campaign, every product, every keyword used. In cases like his, the starting strategy can make or break your business. This is why we had to scrap everything and craft a more scalable structure.
When our project began, Thomas had around 200 items to sell. His target market was the UK. We removed the most unpromising items and added new variations to the existing items.
If you are in it for the long-term, you want to first focus your campaigns to scale.
At the end of the first quarter, we defeated the odds and achieved a gross profit of £8 000, excluding payroll and taxes.
April, when the market and the whole world were so volatile, we peaked in sales. In the fourth month of 2020, the profit was more than £17 000.
In May, COVID became a hurdle for our results. The delayed shipments from China led to selling out all our UK stock. We ended the month with £3 000 in profit.
To return to the previous levels, in June we were working to regain lost organic positions. We ended the month with £11 000 in profit and we quickly jumped into July.
At the beginning of Q3 2020, we were expecting big shipments from China so we can load up for a longer period. Sales were already higher than the sales in April. Although we had to lower our prices and buy from a more expensive supplier, we ended July with £17 000 in profit.
It took us half a year, a calculated strategy, and a lot of work. But for this time, Thomas’s Amazon account turned from “barely making a buck” to averaging a 5-digit profit every month.
We have continued selling on the same market in 2021 as well. And although obstacles can appear, we do everything necessary to get past them. For example, this May Amazon hit us with a major setback – an account suspension. You can see the drop in the screenshot below.
The biggest disappointment was that we were blamed for a fault we didn’t commit. After 15 days of going back and forth with the client, with Amazon staff members, and with a lawyer, we managed to get the account up and running. Thanks to all of the communication, the patience we had, and a few containers coming in May, we managed to rebound to previous sales levels.
With the results we achieved in 2020, Thomas had justified working with my agency. There were two obvious choices once we hit the sales cap. We started optimizing for profit so we approached different markets.
This time we are targeting the US market.
However, we had no reviews – products were different and adapted to the US market. We had to focus the initial strategy on scalability.
We had to optimize logistics, to make sure there is always enough stock, to map out the products and scale. But most importantly – we had to go through a couple of rounds of keywords and PPC optimization.
We are scaling vastly, without dropping below the profitability line.
Our products now have much higher quality than the average one for the industry. Besides, the prices are lower for their quality and this allows us to overtake the top-tier merchants.
We have been selling to the US market for 2 months now with astonishing results:
1) In the first month, we generated $28 400 in sales with a 3% profit margin.
2) And the second one is only getting better – $44 000 in sales with 3.9% profit.
In the next several months we are going to grow the account further and gather a few hundred more reviews. After this, we start optimizing for profit. And make our client’s bank account even thicker.
In the meantime, Thomas is enjoying life.
After the first 6 months that we worked together, he realized he didn’t need a 9 to 5 job anymore. He quit it in June 2020 and started focusing only on improving his Amazon business. On top of that, the credit card loans that had accumulated were paid off. Following the growth of his brand, Thomas now is handling logistics and sourcing. Additionally, he is always looking for ways to develop his products further.
Besides expanding to other markets, like the US, Thomas is up to personal achievements too. He moved back to Lithuania, he bought a house, and he has started building a family.
It is funny how when you find an opportunity it can twist your life around only in 6 months. It is even more amazing what we were able to achieve together after he decided to take a leap of faith.
But to achieve similar results on Amazon, you have to know the right approach for you.
Not sure what it is? Let’s get in touch.
AMZ Bees is an e-commerce agency that grows and manages brands on Amazon with advanced PPC strategy, listing conversion optimisation and problem solving.
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