In many ways, 2022 is going to look pretty much the same as 2021. The pandemic is still with us, limiting travel, and encouraging the growth of teleworking, telemedicine, and online education.
Many people have sought more meaning in their lives, or they’ve pampered themselves a little to make up for the things they’re missing out on. That’s been good for beauty products, exercise gear, and all kinds of products to do with spirituality, mindfulness, and wellness. Natural, organic, and sustainable are going to be keywords in 2022, as well.
Social media will continue to be important, so if you haven’t got your social media game together yet, it’s time you did. In fact, Amazon is offering more and more social media-style features now, including the ability to live-stream information about your products or brand to your product page or storefront. (If you’re efficient you’ll use that opportunity to condense the live-stream into short videos for TikTok, YouTube, or your own website, too.)
But a few things will be different. One big trend we see kicking off in the world of big and small businesses alike is towards domestic or “near-shore” sourcing, both in the US and in Europe, as well as towards shorter economic circuits. “Sovereignty” and “locally made” have become buzzwords, and Amazon even has a “shop local” page.
It’s also worth noting that sourcing difficulties in many industries have made closer sourcing more efficient. You may be saving shipping fees, but more importantly, you’re saving yourself the problems of stock-outs, slow delivery, and customs issues.
And advertising costs will be much chunkier. Amazon’s pay-per-click fees have gone up by more than half over the last year or so, which means you’re going to have to think harder about how to get the best value out of them. You might find that paying more attention to social media and the content of your listing is more cost-efficient than more advertising – or you might want to pick more precise keywords, which are always cheaper than broader keywords.
The other big change that’s happening right now is what’s been termed “The Great Resignation”. People are wondering why they’re doing jobs that don’t give them any pleasure. They’re looking for what Buddhists call “right livelihood” – an ethical job that leaves them feeling fully human at the end of the working week.
That may play out in more competition on FBA products, of course, if they all decide an FBA business is the way forward. Or you may find a lot more freelances competing for your business in social media, copywriting, and accounting.
But it is also likely to increase demand for some niche products. Home office products could do well – most people have a laptop and tablet but might not have an ergonomic keyboard, a comfortable office chair, or stationery such as ‘to do’ lists and jotters (and not everyone wants to go 100% digital).
A less obvious niche might be all kinds of products for food preparation, as new small business owners want an approach to the working lunch that’s time-efficient and saves them money. And while all ‘great Resigners’ won’t change their whole lifestyle, I get a feeling that Tiny Homes and grid-free living are likely to be big trends, which could create opportunities if you’re into storage products, solar chargers, water filters, or foldable furniture.
Finally, what isn’t going to change next year? I don’t think we’re going to see a change to the basics. Good sourcing and quality, great products, a good brand, getting your keywords right – all of these things will continue to be the foundation stones of a good FBA business. No change there!