As a fairly new blogger, I enjoy writing podcast reviews of new shows. It’s like uncharted territory, which isn’t always the case when reviewing well-established podcasts or shows made by big production companies.
I recently ran across the new Ecommerce Roundup podcast by AZ Marketers, and have listened to the first four episodes that are available.
Although shopping online has become the norm for many of us, a lot of big retailers and small-time sellers still struggle with getting a handle on how to achieve success with ecommerce. It’s not as easy as just slapping a product on a website and adding a “Buy” button.
AZ Marketers, the company that produces the Ecommerce Roundup podcast provides services to help people grow their Amazon and Shopify sales, so they know their way around the internet. Here are my thoughts on the podcast and what you can learn from it.
— AZ Marketers (@AZmarketers) May 26, 2017
What This Podcast Is About
This podcast is intended to break through the clutter surrounding ecommerce and distill the most important information of the week into two 20-minute shows. The host of the show, Bryan, provides updates and explanation about what’s driving the news cycle in ecommerce.
* There is a LOT of talk about Amazon in the first three episodes of this podcast. This makes sense, since AZ Marketers’ expertise is heavily based in Amazon selling. If selling on Amazon isn’t your thing, you should still keep reading this review because I think there’s potential benefit for non-Amazoners.
Who This Podcast Is For
- Small to mid-size Amazon sellers (both new and old)
- Small to mid-size businesses who currently sell products on their own online store
- Anyone who is considering becoming one of the above
- Anyone with a brick-and-mortar only business model
The information, tips, and lessons in this podcast (and there are a lot!) are mostly for those who are new to ecommerce or have been in the game for a while but are stuck. I say this because I have a little experience in large-scale Amazon sales and online retail sales.
That isn’t to say that experienced online sellers and Amazon merchants won’t gain information from this podcast. If you’re bad about keeping up with your Amazon notifications, you’ll appreciate when Bryan explains a new seller review program and what it costs. Just be prepared for some of the tips and recommendations to be geared towards newbies.
If you don’t sell on Amazon or use Shopify, you can still use the information presented in this podcast to strategically plan around Amazon’s latest programs or incentives. You might want to change the pricing strategy or customer loyalty program on your own site once you are up to speed on Amazon’s strategies.
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What I Like About This Podcast
I really like the idea of surveying the landscape and making two 20-minute podcasts per week, instead of one more hour-long ecommerce podcast. We’re all busy, and most of us are inundated all week long with emails and articles about the state of ecomm. Most people aren’t going to make time to listen to an hour long podcast unless it’s for pleasure.
There are also no long interviews with industry experts. Don’t get me wrong: I appreciate when a podcast brings in experts to provide more information and details on a topic. But that’s not the point of this show; the point is to get the facts so that I don’t miss important things going on in my industry. If I need more details, I’ll consult the Goog.
Facts, Opinions, Tips
Bryan does a pretty good job of providing you with the facts, then his opinion, and then some tips. In episode 1, he talked about Amazon’s upcoming Prime Week and what sellers should expect. He’s upfront about the fact that most of the purchases on Prime Day are the hugely discounted items sold directly by Amazon.
If he doesn’t like Amazon’s latest program, Bryan explains why he doesn’t like it, and then suggests an alternative that makes more sense or costs less money. His recommendations are actionable, which is always something to appreciate in a free podcast.
Episode 4 started out with some great info about findings from a recent ecommerce study, which is super important news for everyone in retail (online or brick-and-mortar, Amazon or not). This was a great segment to start the show, and I felt like the momentum carried through – this was my favorite episode by far.
At the end of the episodes, Bryan does a quick rundown of the latest headlines, which he calls the Wall Street segment. This was the highlight of episode 3 (which I’ll explain below), where I learned about Amazon’s unbelievable stock price, and about brick-and-mortar retail chains and malls that are closing their doors.
— Cloud Newsman (@Cloud_Newsman) June 1, 2017
Where There’s Room for Improvement
In the first two episodes, Bryan said “we” a lot, so I kept expecting a partner, producer, or another host to chime in. That never happened. I was bracing for it again in episode 3, but he used “I” instead of “we”. I’m hoping that he stays consistent from now on, since “we” didn’t make sense when it was clearly just one host.
Remember when I said that the last five minutes were the best part of episode 3? That’s because Bryan went down a rabbit hole related to a very specific new Amazon program. He repeated himself a lot and provided the same tips and recommendations more than once. The facts and explanation were clear, and the tips were dead-on, but he strayed from the concept of “distilling a lot of content into a 20-minute podcast.”
The good news: at the end of episode 3, Bryan recognized that he had lost his way and quickly jumped into the Wall Street segment to end on a high note. Episode 4 was definitely stronger and more focused, probably a result of going off-course in episode 3.
Making the Call
The intention behind this show is great; it doesn’t want to be just another ecommerce podcast, and it’s not. I think that the host is easy to listen to, and he tries to break the content up into different chunks. It’s still a new show, so he should get better at this as he goes (he’s already doing so).
If you’re in the business of ecommerce, or looking to get into it (and you should be, the future is now), this podcast is worth a listen. You don’t need to start with episode 1, unless you’re completely new to ecomm. Pick a recent episode to get yourself up to speed, and then subscribe to automatically download future episodes.
Do you listen to ecommerce podcasts? What do you think about this “roundup” show? Leave a comment below to share your thoughts.