By Lauren Carter
A Guide to CamelCamelCamel Part 1: Price History Graphs
ProfitSourcery shows you products you can buy from well-known online retailers to sell on Amazon with a margin of 30% or more based on the current Amazon Buy Box price. This tells you what the product is being sold for right now. We would recommend always doing your own research for every product you choose to buy to make sure the price the product is being sold for now is a reasonable price for the product and is not unusually high.
Many Amazon sellers now use automated repricing software which adjusts the price of their products to make sure their price is always competitive and they make the maximum profit they are able to from every sale. Here at ProfitSourcery we would highly recommend the use of repricers as they allow you to win the Buy Box more often and therefore make more sales and more profits. If you are using a repricer you need to make sure it is set up properly otherwise you could end up with your products being priced far too high or far too low.
Imagine a listing where there are 2 sellers of the product, their repricers will compete against each other and keep the price of the product within a reasonable range. If one sells out and the other seller hasn’t set a maximum price on their repricer then their price will suddenly skyrocket. If we happen to scan this product at this time our system will see the higher selling price and pick it out as a great opportunity when in reality this selling price is unrealistic.
These occurrences are rare but it is a possibility which is why it’s worth you checking the price history for each product before you buy. This is just one of the reasons we provide a link to CamelCamelCamel.com with every product we display on customer dashboards. This is the first of two blog posts looking at how you can use CCC when sourcing products to sell. This week we will focus on the price history data and next week we will look at the Sales Rank graph.
CamelCamelCamel (CCC) tracks millions of Amazon products and records their Sales Rank and price. This information is then displayed as graphs so you can see how the sales rank and price has changed over time. You can view data over 5 date ranges; one month, three months, six months, a year and all available data. Depending on how long CCC has been tracking the product not all of these options will always be available.
On the Price History tab on CCC you can choose whether you want to see the price Amazon itself is stocking the product for, the 3rd Party New price or the 3rd Party Used price. The usefulness of each of these will depend on the condition of your stock and who you consider your competition to be.
Above you can see an example of a CCC price history graph with three lines for the three different types of offers tracked. When looking at products on ProfitSourcery they will always be brand new products so you do not need to worry about the 3rd Party Used pricing as this will generally be irrelevant (this is almost always true, unless you are selling in a category where people tend to buy used products, in which case you may want to check whether there are used offers at a much lower price).
You can use the CamelCamelCamel price history graph to see whether the current selling price for the product is typical or unusual. If the selling price is much higher than the usual selling price then you should maybe think twice about buying. If people usually sell the product at a much lower price then there is a way to obtain the product at a much lower price either through a wholesaler or directly from the manufacturer and if one of the previous sellers restocks then you will suddenly find you need to drop your price significantly to compete with them.
If you see a product where the price has remained stable over time then you can be confident that the price you see is the price the product has frequently sold for. Even better if you can see the current price is lower than normal then you might be able to sell it at a higher price when the current Buy Box winner sells out.
All of this is also dependent on the Sales Rank history, you need to compare the graphs to gain a better understanding about what is happening. If there has been a recent drop in price, have a look at the Sales Rank just before the price drop. If sales had slowed down then it might be the case that the product is going out of fashion and sales will continue to slow down. If you are buying a small amount of inventory then you might be able to sell before sales stop altogether but you don’t want to be stuck with hundreds of items if the sales are declining.
Alternatively, if the price has risen recently, look at whether this has affected the Sales Rank. Sales Rank is updated hourly so you should be able to see any effects fairly quickly. If Sales Rank has started falling just after the price rise then you might consider that the product isn’t really selling at the new price. If there hasn’t been a change then it may be the case that customers are willing to pay the higher price.
We’ll talk more about the Sales Rank history graphs on CamelCamelCamel next week. In the meantime get in touch via Facebook or Twitter and let us know how you use price history information when sourcing Amazon inventory.