Vendor vs. Seller: Advertising and Content

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If you have already searched on Google “Vendor vs. Seller” you have probably come across a vast amount of links that explain the main differences between being a 1st party seller (vendor) and a 3rd party seller (seller). Or perhaps you were able to find some comparison charts on Vendor Central vs. Seller Central.

But what about the differences between the advertising and content options for vendors, or for sellers?

Let’s get into it.

Platforms

Vendors have access to two platforms: Vendor Central and Amazon Marketing Services.

Vendor Central is a web interface that involves, orders, payments, merchandising, reports, A+ contentpromotion, Amazon stores, and much more.

Vendors have access to another platform, Amazon Marketing Services (AMS),  in which Vendors are able to set up adscreate campaigns and manage them. This can be reached through the Vendor Central Platform, under the Advertising section on the top menu.

Sellers (both FBA and FBM sellers) have access to just one platform: Seller Central.

The Seller Central platform is similar to that of Vendor Central, with a few exceptions. Sellers have a pricing section, storefront, reports, performance and an advertising section. The advertising section contains the campaign managerEnhanced Branded Content (EBC), lightning deals and promotions.

 

Both Vendors and Sellers can create ads and campaigns that are then displayed within Amazon.com.

Ad Types

Vendors have three different ad types: Sponsored Products, Headline Search, and Product Display.

  • Sponsored Products: are keyword targeted ads that are shown within the Amazon website on the search results (above the fold, below the fold and inline for mobile). Vendors can advertise one or more products per ad. Once clicked on, they direct shoppers to a product detail page. With Sponsored Products, Vendors can drive sales efficiencies of key products alongside what the users are searching for.
  • Headline Search: are also keyword target ads that are located above the search results on Amazon. The Headline Search ad must display at least one primary photo and 3 eligible products which are in stock. When the primary image is clicked on, a user is directed to either an Amazon Store, a custom landing page or a custom URL. When a user clicks on the other 3 products, they are lead to a product detail page. This type of ad should be used you want to promote a product assortment.
  • Product Display: are targeted based on product, category, and shopper interest or viewing activity. Product Display ads are featured on relevant Amazon product detail page, “read all reviews” page, or an offers listing page. Once clicked on the user is directed to that specific product detail page. This ad is perfect for when you have a specific target. One campaign can promote only a single product.

 

All Sellers have access to Sponsored Products. However, if they enroll themselves into Amazon’s brand registry they have access to Headline Search ads.

  • Sponsored Products: are keyword targeted ads that are shown within the Amazon website on the search results (above the fold, below the fold and inline for mobile). Sellers can advertise one or more products per ad. When clicked on, shoppers are directed to a product detail page. With Sponsored Products, Sellers can drive sales efficiencies of key products alongside what the users are searching for.
  • Headline Search (only if enrolled in the brand registry): are also keyword target ads that are located above the search results on Amazon. The Headline Search ad must display at least one primary photo and 3 eligible products which are in stock. When the primary image is clicked on, a user is directed to either an Amazon Store, a custom landing page or a custom URL. When a user clicks on the other 3 products, they are lead to a product detail page. This type of ad should be used you want to promote a product assortment.

Brand Registry

What is the Amazon brand registry?

It is a place where Vendors or Sellers can register their brand to have greater control over brand product listings and representation. It also serves as means to report suspected brand violations and proactively remove infringing content. This helps protect customer experience and brand reputation.

What are the requirements to enroll in the brand registry?

An active registered trademark (the trademark that is shown on products or packaging), proof of being the rights owner or an authorized agent for the trademark and of course, an Amazon account!

Content

Vendors, since January 1st of 2018 have A+ basic Enhanced Marketing Content (EMC), free of cost. According to Amazon, having A+ basic content can increase sales up to 10%. A+ basic  pages can transform a product detail page into a detail rich page that tells a better story, drives brand affinity and creates a better customer experience. A+ basic pages can have creative copy/listings, more images, and product comparison charts, all of which give Vendors an opportunity to better convey their products. These are self-service content pages which have a total of 12 buildable modules to choose from, only 5 can be used per A+ Page.  A+ Basic is considerably the better option for technical products that require more detailed descriptions.

There are some select Vendors that have A+ Premium Enhanced Marketing Content (EMC). This is an exclusive option that is available for some of Amazon’s strategic Vendors and the cost varies per agreement. A+ Premium pages allow for rich media storytelling with high enhanced photos even with slider galleries, videos (embedded and can loop), interactive modules, hotspot modules, a clickable FAQ, product comparison charts, add to cart, testimonials, subscribe and save option. A+ Premium EMC increases positive ratings and reviews, increases customer engagement, provides a better customer experience and ultimately drives sales upward. Vendors that have A+ Premium EMC also have access to the A+ basic pages.

Sellers that are enrolled in the brand registry can utilize Enhanced Branded Content (EBC), free of cost. This type of content is used to showcase products with customized product description pages, is image rich, can tell the brand’s story while providing more detailed descriptions and even examples. EBC pages can be created to reflect the image and story of the brand. Sellers have 9 modules to select from but can use a maximum of 7 modules per product description page. EBC is considerably the better option for technical products that require more detailed descriptions.

Stores

Amazon allows Vendors and Sellers, who are in the brand registry create their own storefronts within Amazon and help grow brand awareness. It is a DIY self-service product that is used to showcase products, collections, assortments and their value propositions. The Stores can be easily created through Amazon’s preset templates and are have multi-page capabilities. After creating the Store, they can be “live” on Amazon within 72 hours. Brands can drive traffic to their Amazon Store by using the unique URL on their social media profiles, on the brand byline on product detail pages, blogs and linked through Headline Search ads. Stores create an immersive experience for customers and drives engagement through multimedia content, customized spaces (using the preset templates), and show products in action. For Vendors, Amazon stores are created within AMS and for Sellers, inside Seller Central.

Conclusion

All-in-all, Vendors “take the cake” have more advertising options than sellers. Whereas, Sellers have basic advertising options, for now. If Sellers enroll their themselves in Amazon’s brand registry they will have access to more options when it comes to advertising and content. 
Are you already selling on Amazon or would you like to know how to start selling? Feel free to contact us at noram@wearepragmatic.com.

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