selling on Amazon tips

10 Actionable Tips to Succeed at Selling On Amazon

July 8th, 2016

In today’s post I am going to share some Amazon seller tips that I have learned throughout my years selling on Amazon. I believe these tips for selling on Amazon will benefit those of you who are relatively new to selling. Some of these are things that have worked well for me since the beginning, and others are things I learned along the way. There’s no particular order to these selling on Amazon tips, they are just some quick pieces of advice. If you want a full rundown, check out my guide to getting started on Amazon.

Let’s get started with these Amazon selling tips:

1. Keep your business money and your personal money separate

To do this I highly recommend setting up a separate bank account so that the financials are 100% separate from day one.  This will become an even more important requirement down the road if you elect to setup a separate legal entity for your business.  I’d also recommend using my business structure for selling on Amazon. If you keep the money separate from day one, it will make your life easier down the road.  

2. Keep inventory in stock

It’s much easier to sell a single item 10 different times than to sell 10 different items once each.  Make sure you are reviewing your inventory and sales on a regular basis so you can replenish items that have gone out of stock.

3. Check product restrictions before making a purchase

There have been many times that I have purchased an item at a retail store only to get home and realize that the brand is restricted on Amazon.  Using the Amazon Seller App or the Amazon website directly before making a purchase is a simple way to avoid buying items that you aren’t eligible to sell on Amazon. So make sure to check product restrictions on Amazon before buying products.

4. Know your numbers!

This one can’t be emphasized enough.  Before you make any inventory purchase you should know exactly how much you expect to profit.  It is also essential to review your numbers on a regular basis to ensure that things are on track.  Many pieces of this business are data driven, and it’s important to make sure you are looking at the numbers you have available on a regular basis.  Three to pay particularly close attention to right away are: return on investment, net profit, and cash flow.

5. Pay attention to your expenses

Make sure you carefully scrutinize any money that you are spending on your business that is not invested in inventory.  Unless something is 100% necessary, say tape for shipping your boxes to Amazon, it should provide you more in value that in costs.  If it is a service or a tool then it should save you enough time that you can invest that time elsewhere to create more value than the service costs.

Still feeling lost when it comes to selling on Amazon? You can learn everything you need to know in my self-paced course, Make Your First $1,000 Selling on Amazon. It covers everything you need to know. From setting up your seller account to finding profitable inventory to getting the right legal protection — it’s all here. Learn more now.

6. Invest in your Amazon selling business

Investing in the right places for your business is absolutely critical for growth.  There is no way I could have grown my business to the level that it is at today without the team that I have built, and without the tools and services I use to sell on Amazon.  Building a team and using strategic tools have been critical, and have freed up large amounts of time that I can devote exclusively to growing the business.  Just be careful with investing in too many tools too quickly.

7. Don’t fall into the trap of analysis paralysis

When getting started there are often many fears that lead to much analyzing and little to no action.  In my opinion it is much better to make a mistake by taking action, compared to making the mistake of sitting idle and letting fear take over.  From my experience I have learned a ton more by making a bad purchase here and there, as compared to the instances where I did what was comfortable and didn’t make a purchase that I was unsure about.  I like to treat the bad buys as “tuition” for learning how to sell on Amazon. There will be some bumps here and there, but as long as you learn from them, then it will ultimately benefit you in the long run.

8. Check for negative feedback

Login to Seller Central every single day and check for negative feedback that need to be resolved, buyer messages that need responses, and any performance notifications from Amazon.  Checking these things daily will ensure your account stays in good standing with Amazon.  While you are logged in, be sure to check on your orders and sales too.  It’s important to look at the things that are going well in your business too, so you can find areas where you should invest more time.

9. Read Amazon seller policies

Read through the policies that you agree to adhere to as a seller on Amazon.  These can be accessed by logging in to your seller account, and then clicking on “Policies and Agreements” towards the bottom left of the seller dashboard screen.  These aren’t necessarily exciting to read, but it’s important to have an understanding of Amazon policies so you don’t lost the ability to sell on Amazon.

10. Learn the language of selling on Amazon

There are many acronyms that are used regularly in Facebook groups, and on blogs that relate to selling on Amazon that will be foreign to you when you just get started selling on Amazon.  Some of the more common ones you will run into: ROI, MF, FBA, RA, OA, and many others.  I have created a page with definitions for Amazon seller acronyms — 49 of them in fact. I recommend reading this and studying up!

A final tip would be to check out my post, What would I do with $1,000 and no prior knowledge of FBA if you haven’t already.  Hopefully the tips shared throughout this post will help to make your life a little bit easier as you grow your Amazon business.  These are all things that have helped me along the way in some form or fashion.

In the comments, let me know what tips you would give to someone who is just getting started selling on Amazon.  If you have any other questions or comments, please let me know below as well.  Thanks for reading!

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6 responses to “10 Actionable Tips to Succeed at Selling On Amazon”

  1. Robert says:

    Thanks Ryan. I love your blog and I’ve learned a ton from your articles.

    The number 7 defined me for 2 months. I was so afraid of doing anything that I was about to quit without even starting. One day I just went to a yard sale, buy some stuff and listed the items in Offer Up, that was good just to make my feet wet. Then I started selling and I was overwhelmed by all the things you have to learned but I’m glad I did it.

    • Ryan Grant says:

      Hi Robert,

      Thank you for the kind words, and great to hear that you were able to overcome that and take action.

      Best Regards,
      Ryan

  2. Heather says:

    Hey,

    I am a complete newbie, and was hoping you could help with a few questions I have, I just want the easiest cheapest most basic way to be able to sell a couple of items. No fancy business, just as an individual:

    1.I have heard that you can dropship in the USA if you live in another country, but so far no one has been able to tell me how to go about it. For example in the Amazon account that I should set up, do I say I live in the USA or in Africa? I know this might sound like a silly question, but I’m afraid that if I say I live in Africa and dropship to US customers from US suppliers they will see that it is dropshipping because my Amazon account says Africa and that shipping price is impossible. On the other hand, I don’t know if i am allowed to say that I live in the US in my Amazon account when that is not true.

    I am just starting off, only want to buy and sell a few products and see how that goes as an individual, not as a business. If all goes well then I will obviously consider starting a business and fulfilling all the legal requirements around that.

    My main concern is how to set up my Amazon account?

    2. If I order from for example Alexiexpress or another supplier and ship directly to my customer, how do I know what packaging my customer receives? Obviously I don’t want them to see “Alexiexpress” for example on the box!!

    3. Payment methods. I am in Africa yes, can I use a normal debit card for making & receiving payments or do I need to use something like Paypal..? (although I heard that takes long) What is possible and what will you recommend?

    How does everyone else manage to do this? I would greatly appreciate your advice!

    • Ryan Grant says:

      Hi Heather,

      Thanks for the comment.

      1. I don’t personally have any experience with this. I think the best practice would be to setup a legal entity in the US and then use that address. You mentioned you don’t want to do that, so we’ll see if anyone else has any insight they can add here.

      2 If you are unsure of the quality of the packaging, then I would an order sent to you or a friend first. That way you can inspect the quality. The other main option would be to work with very reputable companies, who have a track record of quality service.

      3. I believe you will need a US bank account, and credit or debit card. Again, I’ve never done this, but we’ll see if anyone else can provide any additional insight.

      Best Regards,
      Ryan

  3. ketura Graham says:

    The link for #1 Business structure for selling on Amazon is not working for me. Its saying error one the page.

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