Guide to Selling on Amazon
When people think of online shopping, Amazon is the first website that comes to mind. With that top-of-mind recognition and over 197 million visitors a month, Amazon has the power to showcase your business to new audiences and launch your brand to new levels. Trust with customers and the convenience of the platform are among the benefits that make Amazon the marketplace to sell on.
The best part is that anyone can get started selling on Amazon and increase their revenue, whether as part of their business or as a side hustle. While there is a bit of learning curve to master everything Amazon has to offer, the process is straightforward and quite easy once you get the hang of it.
Red Stag Fulfillment put together a complete guide to selling on Amazon, which is summarized with helpful tips in an infographic below. The process can be broken down into four major steps: listing products, selling products, shipping orders, and then getting paid.
Choosing products to sell
To start selling on Amazon, you need a product. You can’t get started on this marketplace without a product. If you already own a small business, you may have a few products you can sell. The products that enjoy the most success on Amazon are:
- Between $21 and $200
- Lightweight and quick to ship and handle
- Easy to use and durable
- Offer better quality
- In high demand and fill a need (can sell at least 10 per day)
- Yield 50-67% profit margin (it must sell for two or three times it cost you)
Once you pick a product, you will want to find a product supplier or wholesaler. If you are a manufacturer or a business with a product in hand, you already have this covered. You can look for U.S. based or overseas suppliers. Alibaba is a popular international marketplace to find wholesale suppliers.
Once you have selected your products, you will need to calculate your profit by using the Fulfillment by Amazon Revenue Calculator. That will help you know how much you need to sell to turn a profit and the fees that Amazon will deduct from your sales, which will give you a picture of what you can expect to take away.
You will then need to order a UPC code (which Amazon requires for all products to list), assemble professional product photographs, create a logo and brand image for your store, and also link a bank account for your orders to get paid.
Setting up an account
Finally, you can start setting up an Amazon account! The process is fairly straightforward. You can choose to sell as a professional or as an individual, depending on the number of items you anticipate selling and plan to ship each month. From there, just create your seller account and set up your profile. You’ll need the following items: legal business name, address, contact information, internationally chargeable credit card, and tax ID information.
Listing your product
Once you’re on the Amazon sales channel, you can start adding items. If you are listing a product already on Amazon you can simply type in the name of the product and choose the option to sell on your own. If the product is not on Amazon you will need to “Create a New Product”, list its information as well as FNSKU number and Amazon’s internal UPC code. You can learn how to do that here.
Selling your product
Once your products are live on Amazon, you can optimize your product listings to increase their traffic. Your listing title should be rich with descriptive and original keywords to make it easy for customers to find your product. On product detail pages, use bullet points to break down features, improve search relevance, and increase conversions for your products.
You might notice that some products have a “best sellers” ranking. To attain this ranking, you’ll want to pick the most accurate categories for your products. Positive customer reviews and multiple high quality photographs play a big role in improving their performance on Amazon.
You may have also noticed that every product page has a white box on the right with an “add to cart” button – this is called the buy box. Since there are potentially multiple sellers selling the same product as yours, winning this prime real estate is crucial to increasing sales. To be eligible for the buy box, you need to have a professional seller account, sell new items, and have available inventory. Amazon will also consider the following:
- Are you using Fulfillment by Amazon?
- Are you using seller-fulfilled Prime?
- Are your prices competitive?
- Are your shipping times short?
Shipping your product
Now that your products are online and purchasable by customers, you will need to determine how to ship them to customers. You have three options: ship yourself, ship through Fulfilled by Amazon (known simply as FBA), or ship it through a third party logistics company (3PL). Each option has its pros and cons, and will depend on your budget and desired level of involvement. For many companies scaling their growth, a 3PL can strike a nice balance between convenience and cost. Many have multiple fulfillment centers to help cut costs on shipping while meeting customer demand and integrating with your commerce system. Do your research to find a 3PL that addresses all your needs.
Keeping business coming
Amazon is known for being customer-centric, and that’s what drives their success. In order to keep the orders rolling in and customers happy, you’ll want to follow some best practices:
- Check for new orders
- Send shipping confirmations
- Maintain available inventory
- Keep prices up-to-date and competitive
- Respond to customers in a timely matter
- Amass a 5-star feedback rating
- Keep return rate below 8%
As your Amazon business becomes even more successful, you will want to expand globally. Amazon has tools such as FBA Export and Amazon Global Selling.
If you follow these basic steps, you’ll be selling on Amazon in no time and bringing in a new stream of revenue. Check out the infographic below for all the steps in detail.
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