Jul 30, 2020 04:42 PM EDT
Third-party selling on Amazon, officially known as Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA), presents an entrepreneur or small business owner with advantages and challenges. The main advantage is getting to leverage the full weight and might of the world's largest eCommerce marketplace and use its resources and tools to maximize merchandise delivery.
The biggest challenge, or drawback, is that your parcels will be delivered to your customers donning Amazon's logo. This can be problematic for branding purposes, but at the end of the day, the vastly improved service and delivery more than makes up for it.
Now that third-party selling via Amazon has really gained steam, there are a plethora of tools you can use, including mobile apps and specially designed browser extensions. For example, Helium 10 offers a mobile app dashboard as well as an Amazon Chrome extension specifically developed for third-party Amazon sellers.
This data analysis suite is actually five tools consolidated into one. And since this is the ideal arsenal for anyone looking to become a successful Amazon seller, the following is a guide to the tools you need in an Amazon seller app.
No matter what niche of products you're selling - whether it's books, electronics, jewelry, or rare antiques - it's on you to conduct meticulous research into the merchandise. Not only is it necessary in order for you to properly list the product, market it, and integrate search engine optimization (SEO) best practices into your listings, thorough research will enhance your overall profile and reduce your number of product returns.
Amazon product research is fundamentally about assessing past and current market trends. "The idea," according to one blog, "is to search for products that you can get for cheap and yet sell for competitive prices with a good profit margin in return."
The core characteristics you're looking for are:
1. Year-round products (not dependent on seasons)
2. Minimized legal issues
3. Scalable price between $10 and $50
4. Light-weight and small merchandise
There are many articles out there that go into far more detail on product research, but just accept that this is a critical process with a high degree of sophistication.
A profitability calculator helps you stay on top of your bottom line. No matter how good you might be at math, tabulating the product weight, dimensions, unit manufacturing and freight costs, and FBA fees for multiple items is not fun or sustainable. And without a specific calculator, it's very easy to make costly mistakes.
A product's ASIN number (or its Amazon Standard Identification Number) is the 10-character alphanumeric code that helps to identify a product. An ASIN Grabber is a tool that easily fetches multiple IDs so that you can identify products in bulk and create targeted ads.
Having the Grabber tool integrated into your browser with an extension makes it much easier for you to plan new or seasonal sales campaigns.
Review insights give you an inside look into the patterns of past buyers, which is invaluable information. A good tool will allow you to study the competition, aggregating buyers' reviews of competitors selling the same products. This allows you to create a profile of "pain points" and identify potential problems specific to a particular product before you invest a lot of time and money into it.
Keeping track of your inventory is one of the most important and fundamental tasks for a merchant of any kind. Being organized is essential and that's why a digital tool embedded directly into your Chrome browser can help tremendously.
Inventory levels that you should definitely track include:
- Your current inventory that is ready to ship
- The amount of inventory you're ordering
- The amount of time this inventory will last you
Since Amazon takes care of the storage for you, you don't have to keep track of how much space your inventory will take up (this is definitely one of the major advantages of the FBA system). But you still need to be organized. Mismanaged inventory can lead to reduced sales, annoyed customers, and overall frustrating experiences.
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