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What are the Alternatives to Amazon? Your Publishing Choices

Amazon is known as the 800pound guerrilla in fulfillment and publishing. But is it the right choice for you? And what are the alternatives?

In this blog, we will share with you, how by working with independent fulfillment companies like Acutrack will actually give you more control of the fulfillment process vs Amazon’s FBA (Fulfillment by Amazon) & Createspace services ( Publishing of CD’s, DVD’s and books.)

Like Amazon, Acutrack offers fulfillment services for your products and publishing of CD’s DVD’s and books. However, they go beyond simply offering such services: they do what Amazon doesn’t by putting you back in control!

  • Control your marketplaces:
    Amazon only helps you sell on their own marketplace. If you plan to use Amazon’s FBA (Fulfillment by Amazon), then it is assumed that Amazon marketplace is your single sales strategy. Amazon’s FBA does not help you personalize and prepare your shipments to other distributors.

    In addition, you don’t get a dedicated account representative who knows your business needs and can help you expand into other marketplaces.

    Alternatively, third party fulfillment companies will help you sell on any marketplace. We agree that Amazon’s marketplace is wonderful, but why limit yourself to just one marketplace? They will help personalize your logistics so that you can sell not only on Amazon, but also on your online store, retailers, Groupon, or any other marketplace where you wish to sell. They will also offer you a dedicated account representative who knows your business needs extremely well and can help you grow your business in the marketplace.

  • Control your brand:
    Using the Amazon platform, their brand is everywhere. Customers buy their products on Amazon’s website. Your product gets shipped in an Amazon box. Your customer service is dealt with by Amazon. Amidst all this, your brand gets lost.

    Third party fulfillment houses do not promote themselves. Your package gets shipped with your brand. They become your invisible publishing and fulfillment partner. They allow your brand and brand exposure to be maximized, that branding is crucial for companies to be successful.

  • Control your eCommerce:
    When you work with Amazon, Amazon is your eCommerce and takes a percentage of the sales and then pays you the difference.

    Most third parties offer various eCommerce integration including e-junkie. You manage your eCommerce and keep the sales and don’t need to share the revenue with Amazon.

  • Control your interaction with your customers:
    Amazon controls your customer service. While this may initially sound appealing at first (one less headache to deal with!), many business have reported to us that in the long-term, this has actually been a huge disadvantage. First, you do not hear feedback from your customers, which makes it difficult to improve your product. Second, you do not interact with your customers at all, which makes it virtually impossible to sell them more products in the future. We all know that selling to an existing customer is much easier than selling to a new customer, but the Amazon model does not allow that.

    Alternatively, when you run your own eCommerce platform, you control your customer service. You talk directly to your customers and establish a long-lasting relationship with them. You get feedback from them so you can improve your next product. You promote to your existing customers and grow your business. You can ask your customers to refer you to other businesses.

Ultimately, you have to decide what strategy works for you. Amazon is undeniably an easy choice. If you are okay with one marketplace with a pre-existing eCommerce platform and someone else to take of your customer service, then Amazon is a good fit for you. If you are looking to expand into multiple marketplaces, maximize your brand, have the flexibility to run any eCommerce platform, and form relationships with your customers, then third party fulfillment and publishing solution is the perfect model for your company. Can I have the best of both worlds? Yes! You can choose the Amazon Marketplace Pro as your front end but have your backend managed by companies like Acutrack and putting you in full control over your business!