While Alexa is a huge presence at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, Amazon has been using the popular gathering for another purpose – an opportunity to meet with third-party sellers and promote a new seller support service called marketplace growth.
The new service, as reported by CNBC, costs between $30,000 and $60,000 a year, depending on the tier chosen. The Amazon marketplace makes up more than half of the site’s eCommerce volume, and also gives sellers access to Amazon’s logistics prowess and shipping relationships, not to mention the site’s legions of customers.
The company has more than five million third-party sellers, and Amazon sees face-to-face meetings at places like CES as a smart way to educate them about new programs, as opposed to reaching out one by one.
The marketplace growth program allows sellers to access an Amazon manager who will give them hands-on support, personal coaching and training. The manager will also provide guidance and advice on problems that come up when dealing with the marketplace. It has three tiers that cost between $2,500 and $5,000 per month.
Will Land, the CEO of Marketplace Valet, which acts as a consultant and seller for brands on Amazon, was invited by the company to meet and discuss the program. He met with Amazon reps at the Venetian in Las Vegas, in a room called One Amazon. He wanted to know how spending $5,000 per month would help his business.
"Anytime Amazon invites us for a meeting, we attend," Land said. "Getting a direct, consistent contact at Amazon is gold for any seller, so we're excited about the opportunity."
Abe Chomali, the founder of XP Strategy, a marketplace consulting agency, said Amazon’s strategy of meeting sellers at trade shows or expos is smart because it lowers overhead and allows for a direct relationship with the company and the seller. This, he said, can help to build trust and grow confidence in sellers who might not be open to new programs. "It's a great way to make face-to-face connections with many sellers at once," Chomali noted.