To ensure simplicity of the platform, there is only one product detail page for each product on Amazon. In other words: one EAN = one ASIN. All sellers of the same product are attached to this page with their offer and compete there for the shopping cart field, also called the Buy Box. The crux of the matter is that the vast majority of sales are made exactly through this field. Suppliers who are unable to position themselves there lose valuable sales as a result.
What is the Buy Box and how does Amazon determine who wins it? We will answer these and other questions for you:
- What is the Amazon Buy Box?
- Which factors decide who becomes the Buy Box owner?
- What options do suppliers have to influence the possibility of winning the Buy Box?
What is the Amazon Buy Box?
The Buy Box is the white box with the shopping cart field on the right side of the product detail page. It contains all important information about price, the seller and shipping. With a click on the button “Add to Cart”, the desired item lands directly in the shopping cart of an Amazon user.
Only one of the competitors occupies the much-desired first place and becomes the Buy Box owner. For some time now, other suppliers have also been displayed in places two to four.
If an Amazon user wants to go even deeper when researching the product, they can use the link below to display a list of all suppliers who currently sell it:
Example of the overview of other sellers of an item (Source: screenshot amazon.com)
How Amazon decides who wins or loses the Buy Box
Not all sellers meet the requirements for a place in the Buy Box. The Buy Box algorithm analyzes vendors according to various influencing factors and decides who wins the Buy Box based on these factors.
We have come to the conclusion that Amazon considers availability, prime capability and price to be particularly important. However, there are a number of other factors that the algorithm takes into account.
|Influencing factors||Impact||Requirements to get into the buybox|
|Fulfillment method||high||FBA / FBM (Prime functionality)|
|Selling price||high||Best price matching|
|In-stock status||high||Continuous inventory|
|Delivery time||high||Less than 24 hours|
|Purchase Order Management||high||Fast & reliable|
|Key data (Product details)||middle||Clean NIS Template|
What is the goal of the Buy Box algorithm?
The more criteria you meet, the higher the chance of taking first place and becoming the Buy Box owner. Amazon wants to get users the best value for money.
If, for example, a seller offers a lower price, they may well become the Buy Box owner as a result − provided they offer comparatively attractive delivery conditions. However, if customers are forced to accept longer delivery times from the same supplier, it can happen that a competitor with a higher selling price but shorter delivery time ends up there.
For vendors’ products to be sold Amazon must occupy the Buy Box. Vendors must lay the groundwork for this to be possible. Unlike sellers, they can only have an indirect influence. Sellers, on the other hand, have the option to define their own sales prices.
One of the important influencing factors that vendors can control is, for example, ensuring the availability of the products. They can also offer Amazon purchasing conditions that allow the retail giant to reduce prices up to a certain point (the keyword here is profitability).
It is important to understand that Amazon is using automated price adjustments to remain competitive. Dynamic price matching compares different sources inside and outside Amazon and automatically determines the online market price.
Why should sellers use repricing tools?
Sellers, too, can rely on appropriate software solutions in order to fill the Buy Box. The more providers there are in the Buy Box pool, the higher the price pressure. The so-called repricing tools can make it easier for sellers to deal with the Buy Box.
With these tools, you can set both minimum and maximum prices. The amount by which you want to undercut a competitor can also specified. As soon as the selling price changes, your own price is automatically adjusted, and the item is offered at the previously defined lower price.
It is well known that Amazon users usually buy their desired products via the shopping cart field. Only a few compare the offers with each other before they convert. Vendors should therefore pursue the goal of letting Amazon win the Buy Boxes for their items. Otherwise, the sales go to the sellers. When performing the Buy Box analysis, manufacturers should consider how high their Lost Buy Box Rate and why they lose the Buy Box. For example, are there any logistical problems or difficulties during order processing? Can sellers offer their products at a lower price than Amazon? If so, why?
Do you have questions about the Buy Box optimization? factor-a offers you comprehensive, individualized support with your marketplace strategy on Amazon. Contact us!