Automation can seem like a buzzword at times. It’s often thrown out together with marketing speak, or from fast-talking gurus.
But in Amazon terms, automation is something you really do want to know about – for a couple of reasons, as “Amazon automation” can mean something different depending on who you talk to.
Keep reading as we clear things up, and tell you what you need to know about automation to help your Amazon store.
What Are We Talking About with Amazon Automation?
There are a few different things that someone might be talking about when they mention Amazon automation. We’re going to cover all of them in this post.
It may refer to:
- Amazon automation services or agencies
- Amazon software tools
- Amazon AI tools
There’s a big difference between buying or investing in an Amazon automation store and using Amazon automation software to run your own Amazon FBA business. So it’s important we look at each in turn.
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1: Amazon Automation Services
The first thing we’ll look at is Amazon automation services, or agencies.
These are companies or people who will automate the setup and operation of your Amazon store. You front the money required to set up an Amazon business, they do the work, and when (if) profits come in, they take a cut.
Amazon automation stores are often branded as a turnkey product, promising that you can be completely hands-off, and make a steady return on investment due to this company’s experience running Amazon businesses.
There are a number of these services out there, and they’ve come under a bit of heat. Many people view these services as shady, or as an outright scam.
So let’s clear it up.
Are Amazon Automation Services a Scam?
An agency or person proposing to do the legwork of setting up and running a business for you, for a cut of the profits, is not necessarily a scam.
This is the classic “silent partner” business model, which has existed for years, in all industries. One person puts in financial equity, the other puts in “sweat” equity (i.e. less financial contribution but more hands-on work).
There’s nothing illegal or scammy about an Amazon automation business, in principle. The issue is when services promise a certain return on your initial investment.
It’s impossible, or at least very improbable, that someone can guarantee your store will make money. So if someone says this, it’s a big red flag.
Unfortunately, many Amazon automation agencies do just this. These services are almost certainly a scam.
Others don’t promise a return, but they take your money and do a poor job. They may not know what they’re doing, or they might take big risks on a competitive niche, or run black-hat tactics to grow the store.
Considering you’ll usually need to front several tens of thousands to build the store, these services could also be considered scams, as the risk of losing all your money is very high (while the service is risking only their time – they’re basically playing with house money).
When Are Automation Services Legit?
We can’t say that all Amazon automation services are scams. They can be legitimate, and as mentioned before, this model is quite common in the business world.
Finding legitimate, done-for-you automation services needs thorough vetting, and you’ll need to look out for red flags.
- A track record of success
- Signs that they have a firm grip on Amazon business processes
- Trustworthy reviews/testimonials from real clients
- Agencies that recognize the risk that comes with launching an Amazon business
- Agencies that promise a certain return on your money, or a certain level of passive income
- High-pressure sales tactics
- Agencies where most of the reviews come from affiliates
Basically, steer clear of guarantees or anyone who overblows the risk involved in Amazon FBA. Anything that sounds too much like a get rich quick scheme is almost certainly an Amazon automation scam, not a legitimate Amazon automation investment (as they may market themselves as).
What to Expect from Amazon Store Automation Agencies and Services
If you do get into bed with an Amazon automation service, understand the stakes.
Anytime you invest in or start a business, you risk losing all your money. An agency can’t guarantee that this is not a possibility. Many Amazon businesses fail, even for people who know what they’re doing.
You should also understand that there is a lot more at risk for you, than for them, if you’re fronting all the money. That’s why it’s so important to vet anyone who you work with.
Some agencies may offer a full or part money-back guarantee, in the case that your store doesn’t end up turning a profit. But beware that scammy services may not honor this, or may include fine-print that negates the offer. So never go in thinking it will be totally risk-free.
Amazon is a risk, whether you’re doing the work yourself or trusting someone else to do it for you. Even established stores can get hit by ranking updates, new competition or black-hat tactics, and fall off overnight. So factor this risk into your decision to hire someone to run your store.
2: Amazon Automation Tools
Amazon automation can also mean using software tools to automate certain business tasks and processes.
In contrast to the previous section, this kind of Amazon automation is hugely beneficial for you. There’s so much to be gained here.
You can use software to automate things like PPC management, inventory management, repricing, listing optimization, creating landing pages, and much more.
Finding smart ways to automate your business can make a big difference in terms of profitability, and what you’re able to achieve in your business.
Do You Need Software to Run an Amazon Business?
You don’t need to use any kind of software in your business, but it certainly helps.
Technically, you could hire humans to do all of the things that software does. You could hire people to run your PPC campaigns, SEO-optimize your listings, analyze and manage inventory, and research new products and keywords.
But this adds up to a lot of billable hours, for a lot of tasks that can easily be automated.
That means you can be much more profitable by using software and automation. You can run a business with less overhead, or put the hours you save your team to better use in areas that aren’t so easy to automate.
If you look at any top seller today, they’re probably using at least 10+ tools in their business to automate a variety of tasks. To learn about the best software tools available for Amazon sellers, check out this post.
3: AI for Amazon
Finally, there’s a whole new level of automation – AI.
In 2022-23, AI has taken a huge step up in the world. OpenAI’s tools, such as Chat GPT, are making huge strides in what’s possible with AI.
Where most Amazon software tools use basic code to provide automation, we’re now starting to see much more complex tools that use AI to do some really powerful things.
AI is still quite new in the world, and in the Amazon space. But there are already some awesome things that are possible with it if you’re an Amazon seller.
The first place to look to automate things using AI is Chat GPT.
Chat GPT is a free, AI-powered chatbot, which can provide a lot of value for Amazon businesses.
You can use it to generate first drafts of listing copy, marketing content, or to help with product research.
It’s not perfect, but in just a few seconds it can do the job that a Virtual Assistant might take several hours to do (and often do it better).
Considering the price tag (again, free!), there’s no reason for you not to be using Chat GPT in your business right now.
Click here for more on how to use Chat GPT for Amazon Sellers.
AI-Powered Amazon Tools
We’re also starting to see a number of Amazon software tools built using AI come onto the market.
These tools utilize the power of OpenAI technology to do more powerful things than traditional Amazon seller tools.
AI as a whole, as mentioned, is still young, so these tools too are still in their very early stages. Yet as time goes on, you’re going to see some incredible things that are possible with Amazon AI tools.
For now, using AI to audit and optimize your product listings is a great idea. AI is excellent when it comes to written content, and there are several tools on the market built specifically for listing optimization with AI.
This post goes into more depth on what Amazon AI tools and services can do, as well as the best AI-powered tools on the market today.
How to Use Automation for Your Amazon Store
So, with what we’ve discussed in mind, how can you best put automation to work to grow your business?
Using Amazon software tools is a must. There’s just so much on your plate as an Amazon seller, the more repetitive tasks you can automate and the more time you can free up, the better.
Yet you want to balance automation with a human touch. Don’t put all your trust in software to run key processes in your business. It’s useful to check over what you get from a software tool, and make sure things look right.
This goes if you’re automating your PPC, inventory management, content creation, or anything else. Get automation tools to do most of the leg work, then review it with a real human, look out for any errors, and inject your brand’s voice if necessary.
This rings particularly true with AI tools. AI has incredible capabilities, but it does have a tendency to make mistakes here and there. Whenever you use AI to do something, for now at least, be sure to review it and make sure the result doesn’t look like it was created by a computer.
Do we recommend using an Amazon automation agency or service if you’re thinking about starting an Amazon business? No. It’s a big risk to take, considering how much money you’re going to put up. You’ll feel a lot safer knowing that you’re in control of your own business, instead of hoping that someone else is doing the right things to make it profitable.
If you do hire someone to automate your ecommerce business operations, make sure you’ve thoroughly vetted them, to ensure they have your best interests in mind.
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