Garden & Outdoors industry

170% YoY Growth: Capturing Christmas Demand on Amazon

95%

Above Revenue target

5.25

ROAS in peak season

79%

CVR Increase

“Capitalising on any peak season, not just the build up to Christmas requires an understanding of how to feed the Amazon algorithm to your benefit. Having mastery of your SKU economics and an understanding of the market dynamics will give you the confidence you need to make smart decisions about price and promotions.”
Tom Baker

Founder

UK business Urban Farm produces a range of high quality ‘grow your own mushrooms’ kits. As a very giftable product range Q4 inevitably delivered over 60% of annual sales for the business. Amazon was their main channel but the business had strong evidence that though demand was rapidly increasing their existing agency wasn’t delivering a sales increase at the same rate.

They came to FordeBaker asking us to accelerate their sales and improve margin. It’s no mean feat to do both at the same time but a challenge we were willing to take on.

We started working with the brand in September 2021 which meant we had little time to strategise. But it forced us to prioritise.  Working quickly and with constraints brings out the best in our team.

Coming to an experienced Amazon agency such as FordeBaker meant that we were able to identify where the biggest areas of improvement were with the client. Bringing many years of selling on Amazon across a wide array of brands and products means we have the ‘muscle memory’ to know what to do in certain situations.

Challenges

The category was growing. That’s always a big plus but with greater demand comes greater competition. With more brands entering the marketplace we could see an increase in CPCs and the beginnings of a dilution of the brand’s share of shelf (number of products in the top paid and organic search placements)

Our listing optimisation analysis showed that whilst people were interested in the product they didn’t know how it worked and how to improve their chances of growing the product. We identified that improving the A+ and image gallery were the best places to reduce confusion and increase the customer’s confidence in the product. 

Experience told us that this was the maximum impact we could have on conversion rates. The impulse to try to fix everything at the same time would have slowed us down and potentially taken too long to implement given we started just before the holiday season rush.

Our advertising audit showed that the brand could be far more aggressive in its ‘top of search’ bidding. Partly to create greater product awareness but also make it harder for new entrants to compete

The brand’s better than average reviews and ratings led us to also aggressively target competitor products to syphon off interest and ultimately increase sales.

Solution

Knowing that we would face greater competition we built a business case around a two-phased ‘defend and capitalise’ trading approach.

For highly seasonal products that means sacrificing some margin in the months leading up to peak-season to increase sales velocity (number of units sold per day) to increase or maintain organic visibility. 

As demand starts to increase we ran a highly competitive Black Friday promotion to maximise sales velocity and boost visibility. That boost was enough to give us prolonged organic visibility throughout the rest of the Christmas period.

Knowing that we’d achieved maximum visibility AND made it harder for new brands to compete we raised prices back up to full price just as demand peaked.

With a higher intent to purchase and full price we were able to deliver not just a rapid increase in sales but also improve the profit margin.

TACoS reduced from 19.8% in September to 9.4% in December whilst sales rocketed. More units sold and with a low cost of sale delivered tremendous improvement to profit margin.

This is a tried-and-tested method at FordeBaker that we’ve used over many holiday seasons with many other clients to great effect.

Results

In a nutshell, we were able to capture far more of the increase in demand. Exactly what the client ordered. To put that into context, we delivered revenue 95% above the Q4 target and a remarkable 170% increase on the previous year.

Remember that we were just tasked with increasing the topline. We had to improve the profit margin too. And that’s just what we did.

Thanks to an increase in conversion rates from 14% to 25% we were able to increase ROAS from 3.2 to 5.3.

The combination of improved ROAS, weighting budget to the peak period and at a time where we traded at full price all come together to deliver a significant improvement to margin.

Are you in the Garden & Outdoors industry?

You’ve seen the success we’ve achieved for Urban Farm It, why not get in touch to see what we can deliver for your business?

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