Strategies To Winning The Buy Box in 2019

So you want to win the buy box? Of course you do, because you probably know that the seller who wins the buy box sells on average 82% of all sales for that product. Question is, how do you win the buy box? The answer isn't so obvious to most new sellers, so in this article we're going to go over what it takes to win the buy box. This article will be broken down into the following sections:

  1. What is the buy box?
  2. What does it take to be buy box eligible
  3. How Amazon chooses who wins the buy box
  4. How to win the buy box
  5. How to improve your buy box percentages

Let us begin.

What is the buy box?

As you can see in this picture, iCertified is the seller who won this round of the buy box. The price displayed ($379.95), is iCertified's price for this product. If the user clicks "buy now", they will be purchasing this product from iCertified.

In the lower box, you can see that there are 15 other sellers who are selling this exact product. That means that those 15 other sellers did not win the buy box and the only way a seller could purchase from this user is to click on that link and select that seller.

You can see why the buy box winner get 85% of the sales and why it's so important for Amazon sellers to win the buy box.

What does it take to be buy box eligible

Something to keep in mind is that buy box eligibility changes pretty regularly, so it's important to keep up with the new requirements - we will update this article as Amazon changes buy box eligibility. Buy box eligibility requirements include:

  • Professional Seller Account
    Only sellers who have a professional seller account are eligible for the buy box.
  • Product must be new
    Whatever your selling, it has to be new.
  • Product availability
    You must have inventory in order to be buy box eligible.

You can check your buy box eligibility status in Amazon Seller Central

How Amazon chooses who wins the buy box

  • Order defect rate
    Amazon determines ODR based on your customer feedback, A-toZ guarantee claims, and chargebacks
  • Amazon expertise
    When determine your buy box eligibility, your time and experience as a seller will be factored in.
  • Overall customer shopping experience
    Amazon will use metrics such as shipping time, fulfillment method, price, and customer service to make sure that shoppers will have a pleasurable buying experience when ordering your items.
  • Fulfillment By Amazon or Seller-fulfilled Prime
    Products that are fulfilled by Amazon have a much higher chance of winning the buy box.
  • Total Price
    That is item price plus shipping cost. The lower the price, the more likely it is to sell, so the better your chance of winning the buy box.
  • Shipping Time
    The product that has the best promise date (ship-by date) has a better chance of winning the buy box.

How to win the buy box

Alright, so now that you know what it takes to be buy box eligible and what Amazon looks at in order to determine who wins the buy box, but how do you actually win the buy box?

Well... there's no simple formula and no guarantee to winning the buy box, but there are things you can do to improve your chances. We've listed out 7 ways to improve your chance of winning the buy box.

1. Price and Fulfillment

Right now, these are the two biggest factors to winning the buy box. Maintaining an affordable price and having your product in stock and shipped on time, is the most important thing you can do.

2. Choose FBA

As mentioned before, FBA products have a much better chance of winning the buy box. That's because FBA items have free two day shipping and are almost always shipped on-time. If it makes financial sense for you to switch to FBA, then we highly advise that you do so.

3. Seller Account Health

If you seller account health dips in any metric, then you run the chance of losing the buy box on all of your products and you run the risk of your account being suspended. Amazon favors reliable sellers for obvious reasons. Amazon calculates your seller-fulfilled seller rating based these metrics:

Order Defect Rate (Target = < 1%)

  • Negative Feedback Rate
  • Filed A to Z Claim Rate
  • Service Chargeback Rate

Return Dissatisfaction Rate (Target = < 10%)

  • Negative Return Feedback Rate
  • Late Response Rate
  • Invalid Rejection Rate

Buyer-Seller Contact Metrics (Target = < 25%)

  • Response Times Under 24 Hours (Target = > 90%)
  • Late Responses (Target = < 10%)
  • Average Response Time

Recent Customer Metrics Data

  • Pre-Fulfillment Cancel Rate (Target = < 2.5%)
  • Late Shipment Rate (Target = < 4%)
  • Refund Rate

Valid Tracking Rate

  • By Category (Targets = > 90%)
  • Delivered on Time (Target = > 97%)

4. Improve you customer feedback score

Amazon’s Seller Feedback Score is constantly updating based on aggregate reviews from Amazon orders and constitutes an average of overall order ratings. This score has an impact on your buy box eligibility, so it's important to make sure you have a positive seller feedback score.

Pro Tip: A lot of customers will often leave product reviews on your seller feedback page. If this feedback is negative, you can contact Amazon and they will quickly remove this feedback so it won't adversely effect your overall seller feedback score.

5. Keep your product in stock

Products that run out of stock often are considered less stable by Amazon and therefore have less of a chance of winning the buy box. The more you maintain product stock, the more likely you can influence the buy box.