Selling on Amazon is an exciting experience, especially if you’re looking forward to expanding your market reach and taking your brand to the next level. Nowadays, e-commerce is taking the lead on physical stores, so if you’re making the switch from your brick-and-mortar store to an online marketplace, it’s going to be a big adjustment.
There are a lot of differences between selling in physical stores vs. selling online. In person, you can develop a whole customer experience that is personable, tangible, and visible, allowing customers to see, touch, and feel your brand with ease. On the other hand, there are a ton of perks to selling online—massive reach, sky-is-the-limit creatives, and simply, the convenience of it all. That said, even though selling on Amazon can help take your brand up a notch, there are still a lot of technical factors to keep in mind when selling digital, especially since the space has become incredibly competitive.
When selling on Amazon, you have to consider a slew of things, including account setup, optimization, shippings, and more. Of course, it can get a bit overwhelming at first, but we’ll help cover the basics. Here’s a quick list of the ten things you need to remember as an Amazon FBA seller.
1. Create a Seller-Fulfilled Prime account for free shipping.
There are two kinds of Amazon accounts to sign up for: the Individual and Professional ones. Amazon limits your selling privileges to 40 items per month with no monthly sales volume requirements as an individual seller. So if you’re making decent sales on Amazon, it’s probably time to make the switch to a professional account.
With the Professional account, you can sell unlimited items and enjoy increased monthly sales volume requirements at $39,000 or more per month (for North America). You’ll also get access to Amazon Prime and FBA programs – which provide your products with fulfillment services for customers who subscribe to Amazon Prime.
As a new seller, you might want to start with the Individual account and upgrade later down the road. Keep in mind that if you create a Seller-Fulfilled Prime account, your products can have free shipping, which is particularly useful when dealing with holiday sales or seasonal events like Black Friday.
2. See to it that the products you’re trying to sell are all eligible.
Amazon has specific policies on what you can and cannot sell on their platform. For example, they don’t allow the sale of hazardous materials, including explosives, combustibles, flammables, or fireworks. Nor do they allow fake IDs, counterfeit items (with Amazon’s name stamped on it), illegal goods/stolen property, or infringing content.
It is best to familiarize yourself with what’s permittable to sell on Amazon before listing your products. This way, you’ll save a lot of time and effort from dealing with chargebacks later on, which could even lead to the suspension of your account.
3. Sell in bulk quantities if possible – you can list up to 20 items at once with the same listing.
One of the best time-saving features available for Amazon FBA sellers is the bulk upload. This feature saves you a lot of time from listing your items one by one, allowing you to add up to 20 products or variants under an existing listing at once.
4. Consider selling used products but see that these are in good condition and are priced accordingly.
Not everyone wants to buy new products, especially if they’re on a tight budget. For those looking to spend less but still get quality items, used goods are a perfectly acceptable selling option on Amazon (as long as your items are in good condition and reasonably priced).
If you are looking into selling used items, assess the product first to help you create your listing:
- Analyze its value by examining for damages
- Considering how old the product is and if newer versions exist
- Find out what the selling point is for this product as new.
Once you’ve figured these out, use this information to help determine a reasonable price point for your used product to sell on Amazon. Unfortunately, some people are hesitant to purchase used items, so brands use emotional marketing to sway them. Pair this with an optimized listing, and you’re good to go!
5. Use Fulfillment by Amazon so that all of your orders are shipped directly from Amazon’s warehouse.
Fulfilling orders is one of the more time-consuming elements of selling on Amazon, which is why many sellers use Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA). This service ships orders directly from an Amazon warehouse on your behalf, reducing storage and shipping costs. It’s also a great way to offer your customers same-day or two-day shipping options, which isn’t possible with the standard Amazon platform.
The best thing about FBA is its ability to lower fulfillment costs significantly. Thanks to their economies of scale, they can ship more orders with less effort handling them. With this, you can focus on other parts of your business while Amazon handles fulfillment.
6. Do your research, plan and organize your information so that you know what kind of costs are expected of you in the future.
If you’re just getting started with selling on Amazon, be sure that you stay organized and have all your resources effectively planned out ahead of time. Doing research and strategizing is a great way to stay ahead of your expenses before they sneak up on you.
Consider the fees and costs of purchasing your products, using different services, hiring people, building your brand, and more. These are the things that, if not planned well, could lead to overspending and losses.
This is why it’s essential to draw up an estimate of what will be required of you to have a better idea of what’s to come.
7. Include detailed descriptions and photos to attract attention and increase sales.
To increase your sales opportunity, you need to have your listings well optimized. For example, Amazon listings should have descriptions and photos of your products clearly outlining their features and benefits. This allows shoppers to get more information about what they are about to order, increasing their chance of purchase. By adding a detailed description, you’re providing more value to the shoppers, giving them a better reason to purchase your product.
In addition, by effectively optimizing your Amazon product listing, you are increasing your chances of visibility on the marketplace. With the right phrases and keywords, you can help your listing rank much better among competitors giving your product the advantage.
This is why it’s so important to invest in your product listings. In some cases, sellers hire professional Amazon copywriters to build their listing so that it’s effective in earning the shopper’s attention and Amazon’s algorithm to rank on search results. That along with a graphics team to help build a cohesive brand/color scheme for your site and listings, and you’re off to a great start.
8. Don’t forget about customer service – it doesn’t matter how great your product is if people can’t get their questions answered or problems fixed!
Even if you had the best product in your category, it wouldn’t matter if you didn’t provide the customer service to support it. Customer service provides an outlet for customers to voice concerns and ask questions concerning your brand or product. As a seller, customer service is essential to ensuring that you meet buyer expectations and handle any issues they may come across.
Delivery times and shipping updates are one of the most common inquiries when running an e-commerce business. As part of the customer experience, ensure that your customers are sent the products correctly and on time. Should there be any issues with the delivery, be sure to address them ASAP!
Remember to always respond to your customers as quickly as possible! This can help negate wrong impressions or even negative reviews. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, consider hiring additional help or outsourcing!
9. Plan for inventory management – this will help prevent stock-outs which could result in lost revenue.
A reliable inventory management strategy is a must, especially if your products are seasonal. By having your product’s quantities planned ahead of time, you can prevent out of stocks, saving you from missing sales and loss in sales rank.
You definitely don’t want to end up in a position where your products are in demand, and you’re caught up without enough product to meet the anticipated orders. If your products aren’t on time or arrive too late, then the obvious choice for them is to purchase elsewhere! Make sure you have your inventory planned out for the year so that you don’t miss out on anything important.
10. Keep prices competitive but not too low.
When you’re selling on Amazon, it’s easy to get absorbed into worrying about your brand, but remember to keep an eye out. As a seller, you should constantly scour through the competition to evaluate what other businesses in your category are doing.
Healthy competition is always an essential aspect of doing business because it keeps the market alive. On a platform like Amazon, you should always be aware of your competitors’ possible strategies in play, product improvements, and most definitely, price changes.
Are they offering higher or lower prices? Are these prices justifiable? These are the questions you should consider when you’re monitoring price changes. Then, use this information to make price changes of your own as you assess the market.
If, in any case, your margins are tight, try offering other exciting offers as an alternative to drawing customers towards your direction. For example, promotions or bundles! These small things can help entice a customer to buy from you instead of others.
With these ten simple tips, you can start selling on Amazon and take advantage of the benefits that come with being a registered seller on the largest e-commerce platform. FBA will help you focus on the bulk of your operations while Amazon handles orders, fulfillment, and shipping challenges.
So, what are you waiting for? Get started on your online empire today and start selling on Amazon!