Thinking of Selling on Amazon? Become an Amazon Seller in 8 Easy Steps!

December 30, 2020
Written by Nicasio Co III
Amazon seller

Whether you want to start a profitable business empire or become a successful Amazon seller, selling on Amazon provides a lucrative business opportunity that you shouldn't miss. Many sellers have shared their success stories on Amazon, and we believe it's your time to shine, too. 

Despite the numerous claims of Amazon gurus, selling on Amazon isn't a magical money-making scheme. It doesn't mean that once you become an Amazon seller, you'll become an instant millionaire. Making money isn't a fast one-step process. It would be best if you exerted effort and time. 

To be successful on Amazon, you need to conduct your own research and plan your budget. It would be best if you also practiced patience when searching for winning products and dedication to keep your store going despite the challenges. Many people quit before they even have a chance to succeed, so instead of being one of these people, convince yourself that you're in it for the long run. In this article, we'll guide you to become an Amazon seller. Let's hop onto it!

Learning the basics 

Before we start teaching you the process of becoming an Amazon seller, we need to discuss the basic terms about Amazon. We all know that Amazon is a popular marketplace which sellers and buyers utilize to meet their needs. But, selling on Amazon doesn't only entail listing your products and marketing them. It would help if you also learn about the differences among Vendor Central, Seller Central, Amazon wholesale, and Amazon FBA. 

Amazon Vendor and Seller Central are platforms for businesses to sell their products on Amazon. This is where you can upload products, check inventory, and file reimbursement claims. Amazon wholesale is a method of selling on the platform where you sell bulk goods at a wholesale price while FBA is a fulfillment program offered to sellers. The FBA program takes the burden off of the seller’s shoulders when it comes to packing and shipping customer orders. 

To guide you on the difference between these concepts, we’ve answered your most common questions. 

What is the difference between selling on Amazon as a Vendor vs. as a Third-Party Seller?

Vendors, or most commonly known as First-Party sellers, send their products in advance to Amazon, and Amazon sells these products to consumers. Amazon handles the inventory management, shipping, and pricing of the products. Vendors are also eligible for Amazon Prime and Enhanced Brand Content. 

Third-Party Sellers list their products on Amazon. They also handle the marketing, inventory, and shipping aspects. The profit margin is also higher compared to a vendor. They also have access to other Amazon features such as Amazon FBA

What is the difference between Amazon Vendor Central and Amazon Seller Central?

Amazon Vendor Central is an invite-only program for manufacturers and distributors. You, the manufacturer or distributor, grant Amazon the right over your inventory, and they handle the marketing and selling of the item. Usually, the first-party sellers sell their inventory to Amazon at a wholesale rate, and Amazon sells the wholesale products on the marketplace.

Amazon Seller Central is the interface that Third-party sellers use to list and sell products on Amazon. You own the rights to your products, and you use the platform to sell these products. The Amazon Seller Central dashboard is also used to organize and monitor inventory, interpret data, and read reports. Since you are the one responsible for everything about selling the products, you have more control around the price and shipping process. Plus, you can receive a higher profit margin. 

FBA, FBM, or SFP: Which of the fulfillment options should you choose?

The first decision you have to make is picking a fulfillment option for your orders. There are three options you can choose:

  1. Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA)
  2. Fulfillment by Merchant (FBM)
  3. Seller Fulfilled Prime (SFP)

Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) is a program where Amazon handles the fulfillment of your orders. Instead of you storing, packing, and shipping your products, Amazon handles this tedious process. It's a good option for sellers who want to decrease their shipping time because Amazon FBA sellers can have access to Amazon Prime and a two-day free shipping service. 

Fulfillment by Merchant (FBM) is the opposite of FBA because you, the sellers, handle the storing, packing, fulfillment, and customer service of the products you sell on the marketplace. 

Seller Fulfilled Prime (SFP) is a hybrid Amazon fulfillment option that allows you to handle the fulfillment of your orders while allowing your products to be listed as "Prime." You actually get the best of both worlds with SFP, but it's difficult to qualify for this fulfillment option. For the trial period, you need to fulfill a minimum of 300 orders and satisfy all of Amazon's requirements, such as a cancellation rate of less than 1% and an on-time shipping rate of at least 99%.

How much does Amazon charge to sell on the platform?

The overall cost to sell on Amazon depends on the selling plan you choose. You can choose between an individual or a professional selling plan. For an individual selling plan, you pay $0.99 for every product sold on Amazon and variable closing fees ranging from $0.45 to $1.35. 

For a professional selling plan, there is a monthly subscription fee of $39.99 and no fee for every item sold on Amazon. The variable closing fee and referral fee are subtracted from the overall sale. 

Why does Inventory Management matter on Amazon?

Inventory management is important, because if you don't have enough stocks for the surge of orders, you'll be losing potential sales. In the past years, Amazon has introduced the Inventory Performance Index (IPI) metric to help sellers track their inventory and find out slow-moving items.

Steps to start selling on Amazon

Now that we have discussed the most common concepts on Amazon, we’ll teach you the steps to sell on Amazon. 

Step 1: Conduct product research

Now that you've decided to become an Amazon seller, your first step is to determine what you want to sell on Amazon. Conducting product research lets you understand which products will sell on the market. Becoming successful on Amazon doesn't mean copying the products of other sellers or picking the most popular product. 

You need to know who your target market is and what products they are inclined to buy. To help you gather information, you can use product-finding software such as Product Discovery. Another way is to manually search Amazon, eBay, and Walmart for top products.

Step 2: Find a manufacturer

Once you have chosen the product you want to sell, you need to start searching for a manufacturer or supplier. The most popular platform to look for suppliers is Alibaba. They can supply bulk orders for wholesale prices. 

Before you pick a supplier, do your research first and choose a legitimate company. Alibaba has its Verified Supplier badge and Gold Supplier memberships to assure sellers of the quality and verifiability of the supplier. You can also see their response rate and number of transactions for the past six months. 

Step 3: Choose your fulfillment method

The next step is to choose a fulfillment method for your products. You can pick FBA or FBM. However, we suggest that you pick Amazon FBA because it helps you focus on your business rather than spending your time fulfilling the orders. 

Step 4: Open an Amazon account

After picking the product, supplier, and fulfillment method, it's time to create a Seller account. As a third-party seller, you'll open an account on the Seller Central. Start by signing up with a valid email address and then provide the following information: 

  • Business name and address
  • Telephone number
  • Credit card/bank information
  • Tax information (If you have an LLC, add your EIN. If not, you can use your SSN

After clicking Next, you'll enter your billing information and choose the account type to sign up for. 

Step 5: Create your Amazon listing

A product listing is your opportunity to show consumers what your product is, what it does, and why they should buy it. When creating your product listing, you need to include all the necessary information, such as ingredients, materials, value, and dimensions. Be as accurate as possible. 

Before you create your product listing, you need a Fulfillment Network Stock Keeping Unit (FNSKU), which is a number assigned to your product. However, in order to acquire one, you'll first need to get a universal product code (UPC), which is a bar code. Once you've received it, you can create your product listing. 

A product listing consists of the following elements:

  • Title: The title is the most important element in your listing since it's the first thing that customers see and the place where you can insert your keyword. Keep in mind that a title should give an accurate overview of what your product is and what it does. 
  • Key features: The key product features states the important aspects of the product. It is also where you can insert other keywords that didn't fit in your title. 
  • Product description: Your product description is where you can write in greater detail about your product and expand on what you covered in the bullet point section. 
  • Product image: Your product image is important to encourage customers to click the "Add to Cart" button. Through the product image, they can see each feature of the product. 
  • Backend keywords: This is where you can input any related keywords you can’t include in the main parts of your listing. 

When creating your listing, don't forget to optimize it. Optimizing your listing helps in increasing your visibility and makes it relevant. To do so, you need to list down your keywords. Keywords are crucial to the success of your listing. Without it, your product listing won't be found by customers. So, do use the keywords and use professional photos for the product image. 

Step 6: Market your listing

After listing your product, it's time to promote it to your potential customers. A good way to do it is to blast Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram with advertisements. You can even work with a famous influencer or celebrity to market your products. Another way is to use PPC Campaigns.

You may have seen these PPC campaigns when you're browsing products on Amazon. To run these campaigns, you need to bid on a specific keyword related to your product. When a consumer searches for that keyword, your ad appears, and you pay Amazon a small amount of money for each click your ad gets. This helps you increase your visibility and gets your product to even more people.

Step 7: Order and ship your product

Once you are able to look for a manufacturer, order enough stocks to last for two months. Also, before you order your stocks, you need to plan where to ship your orders. 

If you are using FBA, you can have it directly shipped in the fulfillment center. If not, you can have the option of shipping it to your own warehouse or ship the product once an order has been made. 

Step 8: Start driving sales

Once you have your product listing completed and your products ready to ship, it's time to go live. Plan your Amazon product launch and properly market your products. To set yourself up for success, you'll want to increase your visibility. 

We recommend a couple of different tactics:

  • Running a pay-per-click (PPC) campaign.
  • Offering a product giveaway during a product launch.

A PPC campaign helps you increase your product listing's visibility by displaying your ad on Amazon's top page or search results. A product launch where you offer coupons and discounts to the first buyers is also extremely helpful. 

Conclusion

Selling on Amazon is a good opportunity for all businesses. You can leverage Amazon's existing customers, thereby gaining more sales and expanding your business. If you need help optimizing your product listing, you can seek help from Seller Interactive. If you also need an Amazon seller account suspended appeal letter, we at Seller Interactive can also help you out. Email us now at [email protected] 

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