Like all of you, we have spent the last month crystallizing our plans for the year and launching various initiatives. Our goal for 2019 is to continue building on the projects we embarked on in 2018. We’re optimizing the current Monsoon software as well as building out new infrastructure and tools while dealing with marketplace mandated changes. As you can imagine balancing all these goals pose some interesting challenges.
Our focus for the Monsoon software this quarter is split between marketplace mandated changes and new features.
- eBay Listing Durations: By the end of Q1, the only listing duration that eBay will support for Fixed Price listings is Good ‘Til Cancelled (GTC). If your listings are already GTC, you don’t need to make any changes. For those of you with listings that are not GTC, we will be working with you to switch your eBay listings over to GTC. We’ll also be removing all listing duration options except GTC from the Monsoon UI.
- FBA Improvements: Streamlining FBA processes is going to be another big focus for Q1. We are in the process of improving the FBA shipment workflow, whereby you’ll specify box contents for each shipment and complete the shipment process in Monsoon. This will also allow Monsoon to track the items in each box, provide box content information to Amazon, and you don’t have to leave Monsoon to send your shipment to Amazon.
- Pricing: We expect to have the infrastructure solidified this quarter so that this can be rolled out to all customers and can introduce new pricing features beginning in Q2.
One of our biggest, exciting initiatives for this year is building out a new, and much improved, Channel and Listing Management tool. Increasing competition amongst sellers makes it imperative that you efficiently consider all the variables needed to competitively position your products on Amazon, as well as price effectively against the most appropriate competitive listings. Most importantly, the above needs to hold true whether you stock media, general merchandise, or private labels. The initial focus will be Amazon.com as this accounts for a significant majority of marketplace sales and is likely to remain so in the future. We are aiming to roll out the first iteration of this application at the beginning of Q3, and we will start reaching out to some of you at the end of Q1 to show off a sneak preview as well as gather feedback.
The focus of the new channel management tool in Q1 is margin optimization. This will include giving you more granular control of your price floor by allowing you to set cost of goods sold, shipping cost, channel and selling fees, and desired margin as well as to see the Amazon fee estimates at any time.
Lastly, we have been working with a software development partner to offer Custom Development services to you. Many of you use other applications in addition to Monsoon to manage certain aspects your business, so building a seamless integration between your applications can enable you to manage your operations more efficiently and effectively. Our custom development partner is capable, cost effective and very familiar with Monsoon, its integration points, and capabilities. A few of our customers have already utilized them with great success, so please connect with our Customer Success team if you’d like more information. A few examples of integrations they’ve built so far include integrating Monsoon with customer websites, synchronizing vendor files with Monsoon, and integrating Monsoon with shipping solutions.
We will continue to post updates and information on these new features and every Monsoon release in the Monsoon Community, so make sure to check them out to keep abreast of these and all other developments that could have an impact on the way you use Monsoon to grow your business. The Community itself will be revamped next month to provide you with easier access to important news and updates, so keep an eye out for more information on that front as well.