How To Start Selling On Amazon (With Amazon FBA)
Starting with Amazon FBA can be the catalyst you need to start making a decent income online.
Perhaps you’ve heard all about it and the amazing profits people are making. While we’re making no guarantees in regards how much money you can go on to make, what we do know is that actually starting an Amazon FBA is often a potential sellers’ biggest pain point.
“Did you set up your Amazon account and become an Amazon FBA seller, dear?”
“Uh. I’ll do it tomorrow. Go back to sleep.”
Tomorrow never comes unless tomorrow looks super easy. In this article, we’ll walk you through the getting-started process so that you have no excuse for not getting off your hands and making a real crack at Amazon FBA.
And you really should. Amazon’s FBA program (Fulfilment by Amazon) is a pretty awesome way to sell and make money online for anyone. You don’t need to worry about running out of stock, nor do you have to deal with the hassle of shipping products to people. All you do is buy, sell – and let Amazon do the rest. And you can do all of this from the comfort of your own home.
That’s pretty much it in a nutshell. Let’s take a look at what you need to do to get started and earn with Amazon FBA.
What’s Amazon FBA?
We're going to go a bit more in-depth now and discover the meaning of Amazon FBA and how to answer questions like “Why use Amazon FBA?” and “How to start your Amazon Arbitrage Business?“.
Amazon FBA or Fulfilled by Amazon is a business model where Amazon stores your stock until it sells and then Amazon fulfils the sale for you.
This means that each time you make a sale and a consumer places an order, you don’t need to do anything except sit back let Amazon take care of shipping and post sales customer and focus on what's important: Making your next sale.
Amazon takes care of the customer service, too. If there are any returns, Amazon sorts them out. The delivery options stay the same, and as far as the customer is concerned, nothing has changed
Essentially, you’re like a bedroom business that’s being mentored by an online giant. You get access to their amazing inventory fulfilment and customer service, while only having to focus on two things
➤ Sourcing stock
➤ Making sales
Amazon takes care of everything else.
Why Amazon FBA? Pros And Cons Of Starting An Amazon Business
Low Costs To Start With
We’re not talking a major startup here! Starting an Amazon FBA will require some initial investment in stock. But it’s really low investment relatively speaking. You certainly don’t need thousands of dollars to get started.
And while the Pro Plan costs as much as $35US a month, you can begin with a free account.
No Need To Build A Brand
Why Amazon FBA? One of the biggest advantages is that you don’t need to spend time building a brand and driving traffic.
All other types of online businesses thrive or die depending on their branding. And working on branding takes time and cash. You need to pump money into SEO, web design, logos, copywriting, social media engagement, and so on as Amazon's brand name and advertising drives all the traffic to your products!
With an Amazon FBA, where branding barely matters. All you need is a name (and it doesn’t even have to be that good).
Sourcing your products can be time-consuming, particularly when you need to track down the same products for re-sale.
This Business Might Not Be A Passion
A lot of people go into business to follow their passions. They have a higher purpose that keeps them motivated.
With Amazon FBA, it’s pure selling. You’re limited in terms of your ambitions and room for growth.
Why Would Someone Pay More For A Higher-Priced Product?
To make a decent profit from Amazon FBA, you’ll need to price your products (fairly) high.
And this is where some people get a tad sceptical:
“Wait a minute. Why would someone pay ME more for a product they can get cheaper at H& M?”
Firstly, they’re not buying from you as such. They’re buying from Amazon, the biggest online retailer on the whole planet. Massive respect as well as quality guaranteed.
Secondly – well, there are a few reasons.
Convenience is a big part of it. Sure, a shopper could head out in the rain on a one-hour drive to Walmart to get the same product for a bit cheaper. Or, they could just click and purchase right here, right now. It’s so much more simple, and it’s a huge reason why Amazon is now selling at $1,000 a share.
Also, selection varies from region to region. Your product might be available in Washington, but it might not be available in Ohio.
In short, don’t worry about the price. People will buy.
And if you want another reason, psychologically-speaking, a high-priced product is a seal of approval that this product is top-notch.
Where To Source Products?
Okay, now we’re getting into the nitty-gritty of starting with Amazon FBA: Sourcing your products.
This is the point where you become a proper Amazon FBA seller. This is where things start to get fun and exciting and you feel like a proper salesperson.
First of all, only you know what you’re looking for. We can’t help you find your items specifically. But the best places to start scouring your stock and earn with Amazon FBA include the likes of:
➤ eBay (tried and tested)
➤ Car boot sales (yes, get down there on a weekend, pick up a bargain and list it on Amazon for a higher price!)
➤ Charity shops (same as above, except they’re open all week)
➤ Gumtree (like a poor man’s eBay. Not as much on here, but some hidden gems)
➤ Alibaba (the Chinese Amazon!)
➤ Facebook Groups (love these. Join buy ’n’ sell groups related to your niche and find some bargains. Kinda like online car boot sales)
How To Start An Amazon FBA Account
When some of us see the words “set up an account,” we just want to run a mile. Is it going to be another one of those long drawn-out processes that we hate?
But setting up your account is as easy as 1,2,3.
All you need to do is pop to Sell Central for whichever country you reside in.
Then, it’s up to you to choose which plan you want. You can test the waters with a free plan, pay a little extra for a Basic Plan, or spend around $35 a month on a Pro Plan.
The amount of profit you make per item varies depending on the plan you choose. Opt for a free plan, and you’re entitled to fewer profits.
You don’t need to bother with VAT until you start making a turnover beyond $100,000.
Listing Your First Products
Most of the items you sell will already be listed on Amazon. This makes the listing process SO easy that it hurts. All you have to do is locate your product and tap the “Sell On Amazon” button.
Then, it’s a simple enough case of setting a price and the condition the item is in – good, used, brand new, few scratches, annotated etcetera. You also need to list its unique reference number, otherwise known as an SKU.
Prepping Your First Product
Amazon ships your items to your customers once you’ve made a sale, but you have to ship your products to Amazon’s warehouses in the first place.
The online retail giant has strict packaging guidelines that you need to adhere to if your package is to be accepted.
As you can imagine, it’s Amazon’s aim to give their customers the best experience possible – and shoddy packaging just won’t do.
To make sure Amazon accepts your packages, you need to make sure that everything is boxed in one package.
All products also need to come with an FNSKU (Amazon barcode).
Boxes cannot weigh over 30kg, and ones that weigh between 15 and 30kg need to be marked with “Heavy Package.”
Apart from that, how you prep your product depends on what the product is. For example, all perishable items need to come with expiry dates, glass should be bubble-wrapped, and liquids cannot go over 1,000ml.
A lot of the times, it’s all about using your common sense.
Don’t want to waste lots of time prepping your products when you could be buying and selling instead?
In that case, outsource the prepping process. All you need to do is hook up with a product preparation centre, who you mail your items to directly after purchasing them online. They then box your goods for you, following all the correct guidelines before passing them onto Amazon.
Lastly, if you decide to do the prepping yourself, here is a list of common product prep supplies:
➤ Barcode labels
➤ USP labels
➤ Assorted poly bags
➤ Non-compliant poly bags
➤ Anti-suffocation labels
➤ Sealable poly bags
➤ Packaging paper
➤ Packaging tape
➤ Heavy duty tape dispenser
➤ Label sticker remover
➤ Box opener
➤ Label printer
➤ Laser printer
➤ Bubble wrap
Sending In Your First Shipment
We’ve already covered most of this in the above section. But if you’re handling the prepping yourself, the key thing to remember before sending in your first shipment is the Amazon barcode. This has to go on every product. If you don’t want to spend time doing this, you can let Amazon take care of it. However, this will cost you around 22 cents per item.
To complete the shipping process, weigh your boxes and make sure full page labels are stuck to each box.
If you're stuck prepping your goods check out our Detailed Guide on Amazon Product Preparation.
Why Amazon FBA? It’s home business made easy. Starting with Amazon FBA should be a lot clearer to you now. All that’s left is for you to pick a niche, select some products – and go buy!
Now if you have learnt from this article and want to keep up to date with more money-making tips, then do not forget to join our mailing list and we'll even give you a complimentary enrollment into my Four Day Fast Starter Mini Course where you’ll learn the following:
Four Day Email Course
Day 1 – The Amazon money making system;
Day 2 – What to buy;
Day 3 – Where to buy; and
Day 4 – Scaling & Growing
Fast Starter Training Videos
Video 1 – How to make money selling on Amazon;
Video 2 – How to register your seller account;
Video 3 – How to list inventory on Seller Central; and
Video 4 – How to prepare Amazon inventory shipments