You already know that Amazon is the world’s largest online retailer. What you may not know is that Amazon is a large online marketplace that connects buyers to sellers. Over 33 percent of the items sold on Amazon are sold by third-party sellers, and not Amazon directly.
What Is Amazon FBA?
FBA means Fulfillment by Amazon. When you register as a seller on Amazon FBA, you will be required to send your entire merchandise to the nearest Amazon Fulfillment Center(s). Your items go live on Amazon and if a customer buys them then Amazon ships the items to your customer, handles the customer service, and handles any returns and/or refunds.
Many sellers on Amazon have experienced a significant surge in sales since switching to Amazon FBA. It is estimated that over 65% of buyers on Amazon will not buy a merchant-fulfilled product, and will pay a higher price to get it from Amazon (or an Amazon FBA seller). With many millions of buyers using Amazon Prime, many would rather pay more for the great experience, free Prime shipping, and free returns that Amazon offers Prime members. While fees on FBA are higher than a merchant fulfilled service (where the seller handles the shipping, customer support and other responsibilities), the potential for sales and profit is a lot higher.
Amazon completely handles the shipping of your items when they sell via FBA. When you join Amazon FBA, you will have more time left for product research and sourcing, and other essential tasks, and don’t have to worry about the shipping.
Simple and Effective Tips for Selling on Amazon FBA
Tip #1: Register as a professional seller on Amazon, not as an individual seller – As a professional seller, you will not be charged the extra 99¢ per sale, in addition to the 15% sales commission, like individual sellers are. So the more you sell, the more you will save on fees. As a professional seller you can create listings for products that are not sold on Amazon and create product bundles as well.
Tip #2: You should have a reasonable start-up capital – It takes money to make money on Amazon. You will need a little start-up capital to get started. You will need this money for the supplies and inventory. Do not let this deter you since many have started with a paltry $50-100 and built up to over $100,000 in sales in their first year!
Tip #3: Persist through the hard times – It is not going to be easy in the beginning. You will probably lose money initially, or make a small profit at best. The learning curve can be steep on Amazon. The profits will come with experience and a lot of hard work. Never give up and you will find success!
Tip #4: Know the rules – Amazon has lots of rules and regulations and it is vitally important that you read up their Terms of Service. Make a note of Amazon’s policies related to your activities on the site. Do not just presume that your way is the way Amazon would want something done. Amazon’s Condition Guidelines, for example, are very different than most sellers would rate items, especially if they are coming from a background selling on eBay. Read Ryan’s article titled “Amazon Condition Guidelines – Most Sellers Get This Wrong” for more information.
Tip #5: Be responsive to customers – Be sure to answer any queries from customers within 24 hours, otherwise that failure to respond promptly will count as a demerit against your account. Set up your account so that all questions are sent to your email, and check it regularly.
Tip #6: Be accurate with the product description – You cannot afford to make any mistakes with the product description. If there are any discrepancies, this can lead to negative feedback, returns and possibly the suspension or removal of your Amazon selling privileges.
Tip #7: Bundle multiple packs – It is very hard to compete on Amazon with single-item sales alone. So to set yourself apart from other sellers by selling your items as bundles and multi-packs. While it is a little more work, this will pay off in the long run.
Tip #7: Use large images and stick to Amazon’s image guidelines – Amazon requires all images to be a minimum of 1006 pixels. There are other rules to be followed with the images. For example, the product should be displayed on a plain white background, so consider a service like FotoFuze to make your images perfect.
Tip #8: Ask for product reviews – If you have listed your own unique product, multi-pack, or bundle and a buyer leaves a feedback saying that they like the product, send them an email to thank them for the feedback and request them to leave a review for the product. Positive reviews can boost your sales by at least 40% on Amazon.
Tip #9: Do your best to remove negative feedback – If you get a negative or neutral feedback, email the customer immediately and offer a sincere apology. Request them to remove the feedback and explain how and why the mistake was made. In most cases, customers remove a negative if convinced about your sincerity. Also consider that you may be able to get the feedback removed automatically upon requesting it be removed from Amazon, read more about that here. If you are serious about success then consider a service to help you get 1000% more positive feedback left for you than average like the one discussed here.
Maintain the highest standards for your inventory, how you rate the condition of the items you ship to Amazon FBA, and how you treat your customer. Amazon wants the customer to have the best possible experience, and if anything about how you are selling would contribute to a poor user experience then Amazon could suspend or permanently remove your selling privileges. Be professional, treat your customer right, and Amazon will reward you with great success!