The Dangers Of Selling On Amazon And Horror Stories From Real Amazon Sellers
On a base level, selling on Amazon is very straightforward. All you have to do is find a product with good margins/demand, list it on Amazon, and it will eventually sell because Amazons audience and reach is so vast.
When my wife and I first learned several years ago, we sold over 60 units in a matter of 8 days with just 3 products listed online with no reviews. Amazon is seriously that powerful.
But with any business with low barriers to entry, theres always going to be a ton of competition. Right now, with all of the various Amazon courses and tutorials out there pushing private label selling, Amazon is already getting flooded with a bunch of me too sellers.
Not only that, but Chinese sellers have practically taken over the platform. In fact as of this writing, Chinese sellers outnumber US sellers on Amazon.com.
Dont get me wrong, the market is still far from saturated but I foresee Amazon turning into another EBay in a few years or so. In fact, there are many tell tale signs already which Ill describe in this post.
To me, Amazon is like a drug, a drug that promises you quick sales in a short period of time while making you addicted and dependent on their marketplace.
When I interviewed various ecommerce business owners, there were 2 main schools of thought.
- Go all in and ride the Amazon wave for as long as it lasts.
- Proceed with caution, think long term, and divert some resources to your own branded site.
Fulfill Your Amazon Orders
The last major step in selling on Amazon is shipping orders. Here, you must remember one thing. Amazon is all about the customer. Amazon demands that you fill orders in a timely manner. If you dont, your Seller Rating will suffer. So, to sell on Amazon, you must be prepared to ship orders yourself or outsource this task.
Decide On The Best Selling Plan
Amazon has two payment options for its sellers. The Professional plan allows the merchant to list and sell an unlimited number of items on Amazon.
The other plan is called the Individual plan and it charges merchants per item sold.
In addition to these seller plans, merchants pay a referral fee for every item sold which is typically around 15 percent of the sale price and a delivery fee if utilizing FBA.
Don’t Miss: Can You Buy Food On Amazon With Ebt
Find Products To Sell On Amazon
There are many ways to source profitable products to sell on Amazon. Some sellers follow traditional business models, like selling products they make themselves or reselling wholesale goods. But many sellers reach beyond traditional means and source products in a variety of creative ways.
Heres a quick look at 5 more popular Amazon product sourcing methods. Well explain each in detail below.
5 Ways to Source Products to Sell on Amazon
Now lets see how you can use these sourcing methods to kick-start selling on Amazon.
Evil Strategy #: Amazon Sellers Can Outright Accuse You Of Selling Counterfeit Goods
Over the years, the number of knockoff products from China has been exponentially increasing. And with large brands like Birkenstock pulling out of the platform due to piracy, Amazon has been extremely sensitive to counterfeit claims.
Unfortunately, unscrupulous sellers have started using this to their advantage.
Because Amazon is quick to the ban hammer and sellers are considered guilty until proven innocent, evil sellers are getting legit private label products suspended by accusing them of selling fake products.
Everyone that I spoke to who has had this happen to them eventually got their products back online. But the appeals process was grueling and tedious and some sellers had their products suspended for weeks.
Whats particularly frustrating about this tactic is that Amazon simply doesnt care. Your puny listing doesnt matter to them as theres always another product to take its place.
Also Check: Amazon Deliver To Locker
Apply To Amazon Handmade
In addition to dominating the selling marketplace, if you make and sell handmade items, like bags or jewelry, you can try selling your wares on Amazon Handmade.
The marketplace directly competes with Etsy and eBay.
There are pros and cons to using Handmade. For one, the general reach is large, and their commission fee reflects that.
Handmades fees are much higher than Etsy, as they charge 15% commissions and a $1 minimum referral fee, while Etsy charges a 3.5% commission and 20-cent item listing fee.
Obviously, youre paying a higher price for Amazons massive, worldwide audience, but your profit margins will be lower.
If you make and sell handmade items, you can apply to join Handmade, as long as your products fall under certain categories.
Items must be made entirely by hand, hand-altered or hand assembled and handmade by you or by one of your employees.
Their rules are strict, so make sure you check out requirements to be approved.
Providing Exceptional Customer Service
Many businesses think the transaction is complete after the order processes but, the best sellers know that is just the beginning. Providing exceptional customer service is a great way to build a lasting relationship with your customers.
The more satisfied your customers are with the product and service, the more likely they are to purchase again or recommend you to someone they know. Make a concerted effort to provide exceptional service to all of your customers and youll increase your chances of succeeding on Amazon.
Also Check: What Are The Requirements To Sell On Amazon
Top Selling Products Based On Amazon Best Sellers Page
A good starting point for identifying top selling items on Amazon is a list of current best-sellers that the platform itself curates. You can find best seller lists for international marketplaces, including the USA, the UK, Canada, Spain or Germany.
These lists show items that are selling the most across the entire site. They show the most popular products per category, ranging from toys to books to video games.
Amazons Best Seller list is updated hourly. Check out the screenshot below to see what was popular at the time when we started working on this article in March.
However, when using Amazons best seller lists, be aware that:
- Products found on the best sellers page can be very competitive: after all, every seller has access to this information.
- Sales of particular products might be trending down, which means you could jump in just as the product stops being in high demand.
- Some top selling products might not have great sales margins and be profitable.
All the same, we encourage you to pay attention to what sells best and is trending. You might want to get ideas for similar products and also look at the Customers also bought section. This can give you ideas to adjust your product portfolio in a way that will grow your ecommerce business on unprecedented levels.
When youve identified products with potential, you can track down suppliers that will provide you with those same products or come up with new variations to gain competitive advantage.
What Products Sell The Best On Amazon
Amazon is a price-driven marketplace, meaning that people visit the Amazon site to find cheap prices on the products they want and need. So, if your price or price range isnt the best one out of a group of the same products, you wont be getting the sale and youll be stuck with inventory.
Certain items will sell better on your site while others will get the most sales by using the Amazon online marketplace. So, what products are the best items to sell on Amazon? There are two types of products that are best sold on Amazon:
#1 When Brand Differentiation Doesnt Matter and You Have the Lowest Price
If you have brand generic products that you can offer at the lowest price, you should sell these items on Amazon. Its not a product brand name that attracts the sale, its the price tag. With this type of product listing youll be going head-to-head with other sellers and the lowest price usually wins.
This is the main theme of Amazon. If customers want an original brand name purse, theyll shop on that sellers website to get it. On the flip side, if theyre shopping for a basic brown crossbody purse where brand name doesnt matter and price does, Amazon is where theyll go. If you offer a brandless purse, your best bet is Amazon.
#2 When You Have a Validated Differentiated Product Idea
So, what are the best products to sell on Amazon for beginners and how do you narrow down the options to pick the right ones?
Read Also: How To Cancel Britbox Subscription
Decide What Youre Going To Sell On Amazon
You need to review Amazons categories to see if youll need approval for your products. You should also look over your inventory and decide which items you want to list on Amazon. If you operate a business with several SKUs, it may be wise to focus on your high-margin items or the ones that have fewer competitors on Amazon.
How Do I Find Out Which Products To Sell In My Online Store
When choosing which products to start selling in your Amazon business, you need to ensure you maximize the success of your Amazon seller business with a product you can actually sell. This is why you need to do product research.
Product research can help you to figure out which products are likely to generate high volumes of sales for your business. Before you start your research, here are the basic principles for product selection you should know.
If you want to sell a private label product, there are some shipping companies that handle the sourcing for you, to really help your business grow!
Recommended Reading: How To Send To Amazon Locker
How To Sell On Amazon In 5 Steps
Although there have been entire books written about how to sell on Amazon, selling your products using this online marketplace can be a pretty fast, easy processâespecially if youre already chosen your products, found a supplier, and evaluated potential costs before setting up your account.
This being said, regardless of their size, every new Amazon seller gets started with the same five steps. Here are the details of what you need to do to start selling on Amazon.
Finding Products To Sell On Amazon: 6 Methods
Some Amazon sellers use just one sourcing method, like retail arbitrage or private labeling, but many grow by combining several profitable sourcing methods. So as you read through each method, dont feel that you have to choose just one.
Explore them all to see which best fits your online selling goals, whether thats just selling on Amazon or building a multichannel empire.
Read Also: How Long Does Amazon Hub Locker Hold Items
How To Change Your Amazon Seller Account Status From Individual To Pro
To change your Amazon Seller account status:
On the next screen, you will be able to see your current services. If you have a professional seller account currently, you will see the option to downgrade. If you are on the individual seller account, you should see the option to upgrade.
This is the process to change your account type any time you need to.
How To Sell On Amazon For Beginners In 2021
Amazon is a popular platform for both sellers and shoppers. To cope with the rising demands of the sellers, it has rolled out its FBA service. This service allows sellers to leverage the platforms powerful distribution network and customer base to make their business dream come true. For retailers, its the most popular choice of platform.
FBA stands for Fulfillment by Amazon which means Amazon will store your products in the Amazon inventory, fulfill your orders, and offer customer service. If you want to use the Amazon FBA service, you have to create an Amazon seller account and add FBA to your account. Its important that you set your business up in compliance with the guidelines on the website.
Create your product listings and inventory or integrate your inventory data into the Amazon platform. Prepare the products to be delivered, and send your products into Amazon warehouse. When the customer places orders, Amazon FBA will fulfill the orders and send all necessary shipping and tracking info to the customers. 24/7 customer service is available for both sellers and customers.
As a seller, you will be free from the processes attached to inventory, packing and shipping orders. This system means its quite easy for you to get started. Amazons robust FBA model supports and allows you to scale your business globally too. Besides, if you are an Amazon FBA seller, you are qualified for free shipping on orders over $25 and $49.
Don’t Miss: How Do I Play My Amazon Music Playlist On Alexa
Risks Associated With Sourcing From Alibaba And How To Avoid Them
Even though Alibaba is a reputable sourcing option there are some risks involved mainly involving fraudsters, scammers, and payments frauds. You need to look out for products that have below-par quality.
- Choose Gold suppliers because they are reliable, reputed, and have successfully been in the Alibaba business for a long period. If you go for other suppliers youll have to gauge them by asking multiple questions about products and the legitimacy of their business.
- The quality standards that products need to adhere to vary from country to country. If you skip out on requesting samples and product testing, you might end up with something that looks and feels very different from what you expected.
- Online transactions are faced with increased risks of hacking so you might wind up paying a hacker if you dont cross-verify your manufacturers bank details along with what is provided on Alibaba.
- There is always the risk of miscommunication while contacting manufacturers from around the world due to the language barrier so care has to be taken to ensure that you convey your messages properly.
- Look out for how the quotations are given. You can tell a real professional manufacturer apart from fake ones by looking at how detailed their quotations are and by analyzing how they answer specific questions. If they can give you customer testimonials or references, thats a plus point. But if you notice anything odd about any of these factors, then back off as it might be a scammer.
Evil Strategy #: Amazon Sellers Can Tie Up All Of Your Inventory
Its quite possible that I was a victim of this first strategy during the holiday season last year. In November, a customer purchased a large quantity of product which put us out of stock of this one particular SKU.
While my wife and I were thrilled at receiving such a large order, we knew that we would not be able to replenish the stock in time to meet the rest of the holiday demand.
No big deal, we thought to ourselves. It was only 1 product. But guess what happened? A seller who was piggybacking our product got the buy box because we were out of stock.
And then about 4 weeks later, a substantial portion of that large order was returned.
So not only did we miss out on a lot of holiday sales for that particular product because we were out of stock, but we didnt make much money either because the large order was returned!
Looking back, we cant really prove whether the buyer was in cahoots with the piggybacker to purposely put us out of stock, but I learned from my friend that there are groups out there who do this on purpose!!!
Heres the strategy that the evil Amazon sellers are employing.
First off, they buy all of your inventory to steal the buy box. Then they sell your exact same goods on the same Amazon listing and on EBay.
Finally at the end of the season, they return the excess inventory!
Recommended Reading: Do Amazon Accept Food Stamps
New Products Cant Get Organic Traffic
New products can get organic traffic if theyre well optimized.
Also, if you send paid traffic to your products as soon as you upload them and focus on getting sales and reviews early on, your new products can also get organic traffic.
Potential customers may be wary of items without reviews, but there will still be those who buy products without them if its something they want.
What Is Amazon Fba And Why Should I Use It
Amazon is the reason why most consumers expect fast and free shipping. With their pioneering Amazon Prime program, members can receive free and guaranteed one-day and two-day delivery for Prime eligible products.
So, wouldnt it be great if you could also offer fast and free shipping on the items you sell? Good news, you can!
Thats the reason you use Amazon FBA. With Amazon FBA, you simply ship your items to an Amazon warehouse and they take care of the rest for you. So, if you ship them one box with 25 items you want to sell, Amazon will pick, pack and ship each of those items for you as theyre sold.
For many, Amazon FBA is a smart and cost-effective way to ship your items. While you pay a fee for this service, youre providing an excellent customer service that leads to happy customers and repeat purchases.
Read more about .
Read Also: How Much Does Amazon Alexa Cost
How To Make $1000/month Selling On Amazon
When you think about making an online purchase, your brain might be hardwired now to go right to Amazon. If thats true, youre not alone.
There are over 310 million active users on Amazon, and 100 million of them are Prime membersthats a lot of two-day shipping.
Amazon is an ecommerce behemoth, and the company is quickly moving into other markets like streaming services, grocery and food delivery, music, video games, fashion, and even healthcare. This vertical integration is making even it harder for smaller businesses to stay competitive.
As they say: If you cant beat em, join em. And there are plenty of ecommerce brands making a lot of money by selling on Amazon. While running your own ecommerce site provides more control over branding and profit margin, you cant ignore Amazonin fact, you might be better off joining.
If youre looking to increase profits from your ecommerce business, it’s time to start selling on Amazon! Ready to get your feet wet? Wondering how to make $1,000 per month selling on Amazon? Before we get into how to accomplish that, lets review some basics to see if selling on Amazon is the right opportunity for you.