What does it take to become a profitable Amazon seller?
Selling on Amazon might sound like a get-rich-quick scheme, especially with the opportunities that the growing online market provides in our digital era. It’s very tempting to contemplate making a load of money casually lying on your couch, eating popcorn and clicking a mouse button. But that’s not a profitable online business, it’s just wishful thinking! Here’s what it takes to set up a successful business on Amazon.
1. Learn how to become an Amazon seller
Before you embark on this journey, you should know where you’re going and how to get there. After all, you wouldn’t board a ship manned by monkeys and bound for the uncharted Isle of Shipwrecks, inhabited by failures. The only thing pointing to that dreadful place are sheer numbers. According to Marketplace Pulse, out of the 9.5 million sellers, only 2.4 are currently active, less than 10% of which were able to achieve $100,000 in yearly sales. So do yourself a favor and get properly familiarized with the Amazon seller jargon, procedures, technicalities, and especially the Amazon market innovations that you should constantly keep up with. Make sure you get comprehensive training from a trustworthy coach to address all your questions and get you shipshape before starting an online business.
2. Work hard and be patient
Once you’ve gained some insight into how to sell on Amazon and decided on what products to sell as a new seller, it’s time to get to work. Hard. Think of a successful business as a small child. It requires constant attention and careful nurturing, and most of all – love. It’s a challenge that doesn’t allow for mistakes or neglect, but it will make you so proud when it grows up to be what you had hoped. But keep in mind that, just like a raising a child, building a profitable business is a long-term commitment. Have you been wondering how long it takes to become an Amazon seller? Getting started is pretty quick and straightforward. You can set up a seller account in as little as 10 minutes and get it approved in about 7 days. But don’t be in a hurry to get your hopes up. Although the internet is full of success stories about tremendous profits made in less than a year, you shouldn’t expect such results instantly. Simply work hard and be patient. After all, you can’t make your children grow any faster now, can you?
As a side note, there are means of making the work easier. You could consider using the Amazon seller app for convenience and opting for the Amazon FBA (Fulfilment by Amazon) solution.
3. Gather a dependable team
When you first contemplate becoming an individual seller on Amazon, you might think you’ll be able to handle everything yourself, especially if you start small. But as your business grows, you soon realize how much you underestimated the workload. As it becomes a full-time job with extra hours thrown in for good measure, the pressure starts building up and you are on the threshold of falling apart, unable to take any time off. What’s worse, your business suffers as well. Just think what it would mean to leave customer questions unanswered or even to let the whole show spin out of control. But all this is easily avoidable if you gather up a professional team to support you in the planning, logistics and management of all the minutia that comes with such an endeavor.
Luckily, if you decide to launch your business with the A-Z product launch, we offer a Post Launch Support service to help you with day-to-day issues.
4. Make a serious investment to make serious money
Just like your car, your business needs fuel to run and reliably take you where you want to go. So the next time you run out of gas on your way to an important meeting, remember that underfinancing is one of the main reasons for failure in small business. Sufficient capital will not only cover the daily needs of your enterprise – including the Amazon selling fees – and keep it running smoothly, but it will also ensure you won’t miss great opportunities to sell more items, increase your profit and promote your business. Just imagine tackling Christmas or Black Friday on an empty stock… and not having the financial resources to make the most of these major shopping events by quickly re-ordering. And what if you get really successful and your products sell faster than expected? Wouldn’t it be nice to have some money set aside to replenish your stocks in no time? Yes, of course it would. But how much does it actually cost to sell on Amazon? According to our calculations, you need $10,000 to get started.
5. Change your mind… about selling on Amazon
If you are reading this, you’re probably looking for advice on how you can become an Amazon seller. Well, that’s the easy part. As we’ve already seen, you need to learn all you can, start working, get help and make sure you have enough capital. But as you will soon discover, what you really want is to build a profitable long-term business. In order to do this, you need to take one more step (i.e. giant leap) deep within. Instead of seeing yourself as a seller, start thinking of yourself as a retailer. That means it’s no longer about personal gratification or quick profit. It’s about providing the best possible experience to you customers. First of all, make sure your products meet the necessary quality standards. Then get to know your customers. Do market research, learn their needs and wishes, reach out and become a brand they love and trust.
6. Build a solid portfolio to build a solid brand
Once you launch your first product, the roller coaster ride begins and the selling gets going. Capitalize on your initial breakthrough and add more products to start building a portfolio and creating a brand. The more products you sell, the more trustworthy you become and you can keep your customers coming back by simply offering more of what they want. Also, when the sale of one of your products declines, the others may compensate, thus ensuring a steady long-term income regardless of market fluctuations. Think of it as adding more houses to your property portfolio or more shares to your stock portfolio. But although more is better, you should choose items that belong to the same category and area of interest. For example, if you start with kitchen utensils, don’t be in a rush to add clothing to your portfolio. This approach will ensure a consistent and cohesive brand identity.
7. Bring some expertise to the table
Whilst it is not a pre-requisite for selling on Amazon successfully, prior business experience can be a huge asset. It gives you a taste of the challenges you will be facing, of the difficulties you will have to surmount and the incomparable joys you will reap. It also develops useful skills and provides precious knowledge of the things that you will be expected to do, such as marketing, advertising, stock management, etc. Needless to say, all this can give your Amazon business a serious boost.
All that is just fine, but at the end of the day, is selling on Amazon worth it?
If you want to be successful, the Amazon business is definitely worth it. But like any life-changing endeavor, it requires more than simply setting up an amazon business account. It takes serious preparation, hard work, a top-notch team, well-placed investments, a genuine change of mindset, a carefully built portfolio, meaningful experience, and a deep commitment to your customers.
If you find all this overwhelming and you think it’s not for you, think again. We are here to help every step of the way.