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The market is the most important success factor

With Sellics control Amazon SEO and Amazon Advertising

Please introduce yourself and your start-up Sellics to our readers!

We founded Sellics (formerly Marketplace Analytics) in 2014 and developed the world’s very first Amazon SEO software. Since then, we have constantly improved our product and expanded the range of features. Today, we offer an all-in-one solution that allows brands to control and optimise their entire Amazon business. Five years later, Sellics is not only the leading international software platform for Amazon but also its largest advertising partner worldwide. We are the only company on the international market to cover the entire Amazon business. Through our technology and consulting expertise, we provide our customers with a powerful solution to succeed on Amazon. Today, we serve about 4,000 customers in 30 countries.

As CEO of Sellics I am responsible for the company’s strategic direction and its global growth. Sellics is actually the second company I started. Before I established Sellics, I founded AboutLocal, the first big-data start-up for local online marketing analyses of small businesses. In doing so, I gained a lot of know-how in high-level analysis of online marketing data and its use in target group-specific campaigns. 

Why did you decide to start with Sellics?

Ever since I studied at the University of Mannheim, Germany, I’ve been wanting to start a business. We had a series of lectures in which successful founders, for example Ehssan Dariani (German social media platform StudiVZ) or Peter Kowalsky (Bionade) regularly told their success stories. This absolutely inspired me, and I began developing business ideas with my close friends. After our graduation, we implemented one of these ideas with AboutLocal.

What is the vision behind Sellics?

In the UK, for example, Amazon dominates about 30 percent of the e-commerce market. This means that all brands should at least consider joining the platform. We want them and their agencies to achieve maximum success with their products on Amazon and continue to grow. With our Sellics software, we can provide them with a simple and intuitive all-in-one solution to accomplish this.

How difficult was the start and which challenges you had to overcome?

The biggest challenges are related to our financing. We decided to be independent and  bootstrapped for a long time so we had only about £ 1.650 in seed capital. Nonetheless, we have grown really quickly. And when you expand so fast, it is important to invest into the organisation early on, ideally 12 months ahead. However, as a bootstrapped company, you cannot invest that far into the future. So basically, the company is permanently lagging behind its own growth. Scarce resources require a lot of creativity as well as a lot of work from everyone involved. Having expanded globally in a very short time hasn’t made things any easier.

And still, we have managed to become a pioneer in the Amazon universe. As one of very few software companies, we have successfully expanded from Germany into the UK and the U.S. as the number one provider of an all-in-one platform for Amazon business. 

In 2019, we received $10 million from the UK investor Frog Capital, and now we are working hard on scaling the team up. It is not easy to find as many top employees as we require on such a short notice – but we are really happy having almost 120 people from 35 countries on board.

Who is your target audience?

Our all-in-one platform aims at all Amazon sellers, that is marketplace traders, established brands such as WMF or LEGO, as well as advertising agencies. For each of these categories, we have a solution tailored to their specific needs, enabling them to optimise their sales and advertising campaigns on Amazon.

What is the USP of your start-up?

We are the only solution that covers the entire sales spectrum. With Sellics, our customers can control Amazon SEO and Amazon Advertising, view the current status via a live profit dashboard and manage the reviews of all their offers at once. They can analyse offer niches via product research and use the competition, price and buy box monitor to place their products more successfully and react faster to the actions of their competitors. Our customers can also use it to manage stock levels and delivery times. In a nutshell, we provide a full overview of the sales strategy and performance. This way, Amazon sellers can really boost their Amazon business.

This is something that other providers, for example those who are specialising specifically on advertising, cannot match. Of course, we address the special needs and requirements of brand manufacturers, retailers and agencies with our tailored product lines. And, as part of the “Amazon Developer Council”, we are virtually at the pulse of innovation. Our customers benefit greatly from this, because this intense cooperation enables us to leverage the potential of Amazon innovations for them.

Can you describe your typical workday?

I try to get up as early as possible to enjoy some dedicated time with my wife and son. As the CEO of an international software company, time has become my most valuable good so I am trying to spend it consciously. When it is not raining or snowing, I ride my bike to work. The first thing I do in the mornings is to check my emails in case something of high importance has come up. Usually I have my first meeting with co-workers, customers or the Marketplace Developer Council of Amazon before 10 in the morning.

We discuss new functions and map strategic moves for further developing Sellics as the number one tool for Amazon merchants. The most exciting work days are those I spend on events, such as fairs. The world of e-commerce is my passion, so I’m always happy when I get to talk about the future of Amazon and Sellics to others, for example through interviews, as a keynote speaker, or to other interested visitors of exhibitions. 

Where do you see yourself and your start-up Sellics in five years?

We will continue to develop our already leading technology. With Frog Capital’s investment, we will take our all-in-one platform to the next level. The increasingly complex advertising possibilities on Amazon require a high-performing software like Sellics to enable customers to use their advertising budgets even more effectively and efficiently. That includes automated comprehensive SEO strategies and smart profit calculations to really achieve outstanding advertising. That’s also why we are introducing automation based on machine learning. We will also expand in terms of localisation in order to better meet the needs of our internationally active customers. Even before the funding, we were active in 30 countries, with a strong focus on Germany, the UK and the U.S.

What 3 tips would you give to founders?

  1. Speaking from experience, the market is the most important success factor. A large and still growing market significantly increases the chances of success. 
  2. Hope is not a strategy. If you notice that something does not work out, make a change and adapt your strategy to make your vision come true.
  3. Don’t give up! Every company goes through several difficult phases, especially in the beginning. But when things are getting more difficult, it simply means you have to work harder.

More information you will find here

Thank you Franz Jordan for the Interview

Statements of the author and the interviewee do not necessarily represent the editors and the publisher opinion again.

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