Online customers have diverse shopping choices. Some may prefer specific colour over another and different size. Here we, as a seller, need to use Amazon product listing variations, or parent-child listings.
Amazon listing variations allow you to add variation into your listing to improve customer’s experience. Listing variations provides variety of buying options at one place, making it easier to choose what you looking for instead browsing through the other search results.
It increases product’s discoverability and conversions.
What is a listing variation?
Simply, variations refer to multiple products under one listing available for sale. Additionally, you can add various colors, sizes of your products.
Amazon listing variations paradigm has three components:
Parent ASIN is the unique number of the listing that acts as “parents” to hold variations and is a non-buyable.
They are variants of parent listing: you can hold multiple child variations under one parent listing. For example, Bed Sheet in twelve color and four standard size.
It denotes to the type of variation; it differentiates the related products from each other with regard to specific variation such as size, color, flavor, etc.
It depends on the seller how many variations he want to add in either one or more than one simultaneously.
If you want to sell a bed sheet in multiple colors and sizes, you would ideally use the ‘SizeColor’ variation theme. It allows you to offer various sizes and colors on one listing.
- Single bed sheet Blue
- Double bed sheet Burgundy
- King size bed sheet black
What is a variation relationship?
The variation relationship is better explained as set of products that are interrelated with each other in terms of color, size, flavor, etc. the better the variation relationship, the higher the chances of listing conversions. Customer should have optimized shopping experience to compare different product choices on the basis of color, size, flavor, etc.
Here is what the variation looks like on a bedding listing:
What are the benefits of listing variations?
Adding variation to the existing listing or adding a variation into the new listing contributes to your overall selling strategy on Amazon.
Adding listing variations offers multiple buying options to the customer to take informed buying decisions on single interface rather going in and out on multiple listings. This easy-to-go process is the decisive factors in buying decisions that ultimately increase your listing conversions.
The listing variations can also add within the existing listing to give boost to low-performing listings. let’s say, you are selling sofa cushion of 35CM and it performs low; you can add more colors with sizes like 40CM sofa cushion and so on.
Whole sum of reviews for each child listing
Reviews of the variations will be cumulative and shown under parent listing. It will boot listing performance.
Integrated sales history:
No matter which variation generate sales, the overall sales history of that listing. It will increase organic sales ranking as well as Best Seller Rank.
What can happen if you don’t use variations appropriately?
Misusing listing variation will pop up policy warning at first, where Amazon informs you about listing violations. Mind it: sometime Amazon will not inform through policy warning and block the listing directly instead. Then, you land in a position to open case with the Amazon and file reinstate appeal, if Amazon consider it valid to pursue, it may restore your account otherwise it may suspend your account for life time.
Take serious the policy warnings:
It is the indication for making efforts well before time to avoid suspension.
What if you are suspended for variations misuse?
If you encountering suspension, first thing you have to do it is to check what went against Amazon Polices. Amazon will not reinstate your listing until you have figured the problem and solve it as per their terms of services.
The major task before appealing for reinstatement of listing is to do listing audit.. find out where variations are misused, check all your listings if they are compliant or not, anticipated reasons of suspension. After doing preliminary audit, you have to determine your course of action to pursue the case with Amazon. Now execute your course of action though filling your appeal and format it on-point, easy to read and under one page length, because Amazon has hundreds of appeals to review.
How to create your variation listings
Amazon does not allow creating variations for every listing. Typically, you can create listing for the categories including Toys and Games, Health and Beauty, Outdoors and Grocery, Clothing and Accessories & Shoes.
1. Creating a brand new listing variation
Two methods are used to create brand new listing or parent-child listing on Amazon. You can create it manually or through inventory file.
- Login to your Seller Central Account
- Go to ‘Inventory’ tab, and click “Add a Product”
- Clicking on “I am adding a product not sold on Amazon”
Here you get two options:
- Either find your product through browse category or scrolling down to the search function and find your matching category.
- The next page pops up, you will fill ‘Product Name (Title)’, ‘Brand’, and ‘Manufacturer’ section. as you are adding multiple variations, ‘Product ID ’ may leave blank.
- Filling the information in ‘Vital Info’ section, move to the ‘Variations’ tab and choose the ‘Variation Theme.’ Remember variation theme is synonyms to the type of product variation.
- Enter the entire color, you want to add in and click on ‘Add Variations.’
- After it, enter the Product ID, its type, condition, price, and quantity. Note it: if you are FBA seller, make the quantity zero.
- Go down to the bottom right of the page and click ‘Save & Finish.’ A message pop-up that shows your information is completed and will be reviewed within fifteen minutes.
That’s what we have to do for creating brand new variation from the scratch.
- After you enter all the required information, you can click ‘Save & Finish.’ After about 15 minutes, your parent-child listing will be in your ‘Manage Inventory’ section!
Learn about optimize your amazon listing.
2. Creating variations using an inventory file
Inventory file method is easy and helps you out to upload what you want to in a single file.
For creating parent-child listing through inventory file, follow the steps elaborated below:
Step 1: Sign in to your seller central
Step 2: Go to ‘Inventory’ Tab
Step 3: Click on ‘Add Product via upload’
Step 4: Enter your product, choose the appropriate category, then click on ‘Generate Template.’
Add all your product information in the ‘template’ tab. Amazon will suggest you information to make sure the information provided is correct. Filling the inventory file is somehow cumbersome exercise, but you can do it simply following the instructions so no errors pop up.
Points to Remember:
- Don’t enter size, count, type, color, parents SKU, relationship type, or quantity for parents listing.
- Don’t add information such as price, free shipping, etc for the parent product, since these are overridden with child listing.
- Ensure adding information of price, weight, size, etc., for the child products.
3. How to combine two ASINs into one variation (parent-child) listing:
Your first step will be downloading the relevant category template for your category through Product Classifier or Template for Specific Categories. Checking the Valid Values tab will tell you what variation themes are available. If you cannot find any theme variation as listed, you cannot create a product with variations in this specific category.
Move to inventory template, start creating parents and child SKUs.
On the parent item:
Fill required fields including SKU. You should add any alphanumeric string upto 40 characters or less but is unique. It shouldn’t duplicate with your other SKUs. Many sellers prefer adding “parent” to their base SKU to remember it as a parent SKU. You have to leave the ‘Parent SKU’ column blank and append a value in ‘Variation Theme.’
Leave ‘Relationship Type’ and ‘all other non-required fields blank.’
For Child ASIN
For child items, you should fill the ‘Parent SKU’ field using the value derived from Parent’s SKU. Enter “Child” in ‘Parentage’ and include “variation” in ‘Relationship Type.’ You should enter the same value under ‘Variation Theme’ field that you entered for ‘Variation Theme’ on the parent.
Filling up the required fields, check the file for errors using step 1, then uploaded the completed file through interface shown add product via upload.
The Last Advice
The best practices have emerged from the experience of the various sellers who have manipulated the variation mechanism to grow the sales on new products and get more reviews. Do you know! If you try to manipulate the variation onto a listing it does not belong to, Amazon will not spare you and remove your product listing if it does not remain compliant.
Surprisingly, as per Amazon’s Variation Relationship Policy, all related products may not have valid variations. The following checklist help you check your listing either valid or variation or not.
- Does your product have similar functions, ASINs, and design?
- Does the product has variation in a few, or specific ways that does not affect the core of the item.
- What customer expects to find these products together on a Detail Product page?