Blog2018-08-29T03:03:42+00:00

Blog

Amazon Offering Incentives for Creating New Products

Maybe you noticed (or didn't notice) the memo from Amazon that was posted to the Seller Central message board yesterday. To briefly summarize, Amazon is going to allow sellers who create new product pages in specific categories to not pay Long-Term Storage Fees for up to 6 months for those products. These listings must be created between August 21 and November 30, 2018 and the inventory needs to be at the warehouse by December 5. So now that we've seen the "What" and the "When", lets break it down a little further to understand even more about this new Incentive. Who - Only sellers with a Pro plan are eligible to create new product pages. It seems that Amazon is reaching out to brands, so that would include private label sellers and sellers who create bundles. One thing to note is that "bundling" existing ASINs (also known as multi-packing) does not qualify for [...]

What is Amazon Prime and How Much Does an Amazon Prime Membership Cost?

Amazon Prime is a membership that currently costs $119/year or can be subscribed to on a monthly basis for $12.99/month.  Members of Amazon Prime enjoy many benefits, and each benefit on its own may be reason enough to join. Amazon offers a FREE 30-day trial membership, and college students who are currently enrolled may qualify for 6-months of Prime for free. Some cell phone plans and Credit Cards also offer free memberships to Amazon Prime. Check your Terms of Service to see if yours offers this. Some of the Benefits of subscribing to Amazon Prime Free Same-Day, One-Day, or Two-Day Shipping Amazon has over 100 Fulfillment Centers strategically located around the world. Your proximity to one or more of these colossal “warehouses” will determine how fast Amazon can ship products to you. Enter your zip code into this search box on Amazon and find out how fast [...]

How to Sell on Amazon

If a How to sell on Amazon article actually existed, one that taught the basics of becoming an Amazon Seller, setting up an account in Amazon Seller Central, finding products to sell, selling on Amazon, shipping products into an Amazon Fulfillment Center vs. shipping them to an FBA Prep Center vs. shipping them one by one from your home or place of business - That article would actually have to be a complete course, or at the very minimum, a series of articles, and even then, it would likely be incomplete. Selling on Amazon, much like selling on eBay, is something that millions of people can already put on their resume. The Amazon marketplace is huge, and while they are not the world’s largest retailer (yet), they have become the world’s largest online retailer, one Amazon sale at a time. So you want to sell on Amazon. Easy enough - Open [...]

Amazon FBA – Which Selling Plan is Right for You?

When selling on Amazon, you can sign up for an individual selling account or a professional selling account. Understanding the differences will help you choose the right account type. The graphic below outlines the basic differences of the plans, but the differences don’t stop there. Individual sellers can’t do any of the following: ⦁ Create new listings on Amazon ⦁ Apply to sell in restricted categories on Amazon. ⦁ Use 3rd party services that help you automate your business and make it more efficient. Professional sellers can do all of the above and more: ⦁ Upload multiple items at once with spreadsheets, saving a ton of time. ⦁ Access many more seller reports. ⦁ Receive access to the buy box, the featured seller section on most listings. If you decide to start out as an individual seller, the good news is that switching to a professional account is simple. ⦁ [...]

Am I Getting the Best Discount?

"Question, why would you buy Kohl's gift cards? By using the Kohl's charge card, you get the discount." This is not the first time I was asked this type of question, so let's compare: The question revolves around the fact that Kohl's sometimes offers 10% off your purchase if you use your Kohl's charge card. In reality, however. the Kohl's CC discount is taken after all other discounts. Here's an example. You shop at Kohl's or their website and buy $100 of merchandise and there is a 20% off special. Let's also assume, for this example, that you have $10 Kohl's Cash (rewards) to spend. Your total after discounts is $72. ($100 - $10 Kohl's cash = $90, minus 20%). Now you can deduct your 10% discount for using the Kohl's Credit Card. 10% off the $72 price ($7.20) leaves $64.80. Not bad, but keep in mind that the 10% [...]

To Commingle or Not to Commingle with FBA

One of the biggest benefits of selling on Amazon is the ability to send inventory in to Amazon’s warehouses and have them fulfill orders for you, not to mention handling the returns and customer inquiries. WHAT IS COMMINGLING? When sending in inventory, one decision that sellers must make is whether to commingle or not. Commingling simply means that you do not place your label on the products when prepping a shipment; instead Amazon scans the UPC code to identify the item when they receive it. When someone buys your item, that customer may get one that you sent in, or Amazon may send one that is closer to the shipping address. If your items are all stored in the Midwest and a customer from California orders from you, Amazon may fulfill from another seller’s inventory in a Phoenix warehouse to get the item to the customer faster. PROS AND CONS [...]

3 Simple Repricing Tactics to Sell Product Before the End of Q4

Here are some simple tactics that may be helpful to those Amazon sellers who are not using a repricer: 1) Reprice your highest priced inventory. From your Seller Central page, go to: Inventory>Active>Amazon Fulfilled and sort by the highest price. Reprice the first couple pages, or maybe items over a certain price, especially ones that have been in inventory for 60-90 days or longer. If the low price is within a few percent of your price, match it. If it is considerably lower, click the link and look at the item as if you were making a buying decision. Would you buy it today? Would you price it where you currently have it? Would it be profitable to buy at the price you paid and resell at the current "average relevant" price? Does it seem like the price will rebound? If not, cut your losses and sell it now. If [...]

Negative Feedback Strategy

Seller feedback is something that every Amazon seller should be concerned with. Keeping your score as close to 100% and 5 Stars is important when customers are analyzing who to buy from. Many times buyers just buy from whomever is in the buy box, but more and more listings are showing up with nobody in the buy box (suppressed buy box), so buyers have to go to the list of all sellers to select on to buy from. If you have a 98% feedback rating, and your similarly priced competitor has a 100% feedback rating, you could easily lose sale after sale to that competitor. A quick look at what feedback scores mean: Feedback Score of 4 – Some people worry about not getting all perfect 5 feedback scores. Leave this alone. It does bring down your star rating a little depending on how many feedbacks you have, but it [...]

10 Tips for Transitioning from Q4 to Q1 as an Amazon Seller

While everyone is enjoying the fruits of their labor during Q4, it’s easy to forget that the craziness of Q4 doesn’t last all year, and you need a strategy going into January. Sales velocity changes, prices change, and you need to approach the new year with some basic things in mind. Here are 10 tips and strategies you can use to become better prepared for what January brings and improve your Amazon business. 1. Sell what you can before Dec. 22. This includes duds you have bought, but it also includes items you may be deeper on than you would like or items that have way more sellers left on them to justify holding out for the day that they all sell out so you can get your desired price. Now, if you see a product with high demand and low supply, it may be worth waiting it out to [...]

Life of a Multi-Million Dollar Amazon Seller by Dan Meadors

  A little bit about us and how we got started selling on Amazon In late 2011 we were both working full-time jobs for an online retail company that specialized in selling collectible card games. One day, the CFO of the company quit. It surprised us because he was making a six-figure salary at the time, so we asked him why he was leaving. He told us that he was making more money selling stuff on Amazon and he was just going to focus all his time on that. We were shocked that this was even possible and to be honest, rather skeptical. We probed him about it further and he decided to take us on a trip to a local Wal-Mart to prove it to us. That was the day we learned about Retail Arbitrage and before that day could turn into night, Eric and I had decided to [...]

Purchase Orders – Hashing out the Details

I noticed a discussion in a buy/sell wholesale group in which a Seller did not disclose that the goods were still in production and would not be ready to ship for some time. The exact details are irrelevant, but what matters is that little details which could be a deal-killer should be flushed out early on to save your time. One way, which can be cumbersome, but well worth it (especially for larger purchases), is by use of a purchase order. A Purchase Order or "PO" is an written authorization from a Buyer to acquire goods from a Seller and it spells out all the details expected such as: Price, Quantity, Condition, Packaging, Labeling, Delivery Date, etc. And, it is deemed a legally binding contract. The Seller then reviews and any revisions can be agreed upon before the Seller accepts the final PO by signing and returning to the buyer. [...]

How to Use OAXRAY to Find Products to Track

In this video, Seller Essentials shows you how to use OAXRAY to find products you can track on MyAlerts.com or your favorite product tracking tool. Seller Essentials has negotiated a 10 day free trial for our viewers. Click the button below to give OAXRAY a try. Start your free trial today!

Pricing Strategies for Amazon FBA Sellers – Does Low Price Win?

As I coach new clients, one of the issues that comes up repeatedly is pricing. How should I price my product? Should I be .05 lower than the lowest price? How high can I price and still get a share of the buy box? You get the idea. There’s no easy answer to any of these, and I’d like to address the first question in this post. One of the biggest misconceptions of newer sellers is that you have to be the lowest price, always. It seems to make perfect sense, but in most cases it is simply not the case. Amazon has a buy box, the featured area on the main page of a listing where the price and the seller’s store name are listed. Since there are thousands of third-party sellers, the seller featured will often be one of them instead of Amazon. The likelihood of a [...]

Stop Comparing Yourself to Other Sellers

One of the most destructive things I see new sellers do is compare themselves to others.  There’s nothing more deflating after working your butt off to get your first few boxes out of the door than to see a picture like the one below posted on Facebook. There are multiple problems for newer sellers or even veteran sellers who maybe aren’t getting this many boxes out. 1. They assume that they are doing something wrong. 2. They assume that the other seller posting the pic is making more money that they are. 3. They try to find out what that seller is doing and don’t realize that it might not work for them. This is self-defeating thinking as you have no idea how much time the person puts in, how much ROI the person will likely receive, or how much money the person has to work with. ANYONE could fill [...]

Amazon Free Standard Shipping Increased from $35 to $49

Amazon has just increased the minimum qualifying purchase for free shipping from $35 to $49. As a result, Amazon Prime is now an even better deal than it was even a few days ago. For $99 a year, you get free two-day shipping on all of your orders being shipped from an Amazon warehouse, whether Amazon themselves is the seller, or even if it’s a third-party merchant using the Fulfillment By Amazon (FBA) shipping service. Besides the free shipping enjoyed by Prime members, you also receive exclusive access to thousands of movies and TV shows, unlimited ad-free music streaming (over a million songs), unlimited photo storage, and over 800,000 free Kindle e-books. So order $49 and get free shipping, or get Prime for $99 a year and get so much more.

How to Use OAXRAY to Source on Amazon

In this video, Seller Essentials shows you how to go through hundreds of products using OAXRAY to do some "reverse sourcing" on Amazon in the same time it would take to go through 10-20 using the traditional way of searching. Seller Essentials has negotiated a 10 day free trial for our viewers. Click the button below to give OAXRAY a try. Start your free trial today!

How to Use OAXRAY to Source More Efficiently

In this video, Seller Essentials shows you how to go through hundreds of products using OAXRAY in the time it would take to go through 10-20 using the traditional way of searching. Seller Essentials has negotiated a 10 day free trial for our viewers. Click the button below to give OAXRAY a try. Start your free trial today!

How to Optimize Online Arbitrage Deals using Rebates, Gift Cards, Discounts, and Bonuses

If you are wondering how you can turn an otherwise marginal deal into a deal that is very profitable, you will want to watch this Online Arbitrage video by Seller Essentials. By taking advantage of discounts and bonuses provided by the retailer, and combining those with discount gift cards, rebates, and credit cards that offer rewards, your Online Arbitrage skills can turn straw into gold. Buy the PROFITABLE deals that others are totally missing. This video focuses on selling on Amazon using the FBA platform but can easily be adapted to any selling channel. The Essential Daily Deals service is mentioned in the video - Check out EssentialDailyDeals.com for more information.

How to Avoid Long-Term Storage Fees on Your Amazon FBA Inventory

On February 15 and August 15 every year, Amazon assesses a long-term storage (LTS) fee to all items with more than a single unit in stock that have been in the warehouse for more than 6 months. To avoid this, you need to identify your inventory that is subject to these fees and select one of the following options to avoid the fees: Reduce your price to liquidate the inventory before the deadline. Have the inventory returned to you at a cost of .50/unit. Have Amazon destroy your inventory. There are two methods to check which of your items will be subject to the LTS fees. First Option: Go to your Recommended Removals report by doing the following: In Seller Central, hover over “Reports” at the top of the screen. Select “Fulfillment” from the drop-down menu. On the far left toward the bottom, select “Recommended Removals.” At this point you [...]

Amazon Restricted Categories & Brands

Whether an Amazon category is open or gated, being approved to sell does not necessarily mean that you can sell every item that is listed in that category. There are many brands that are restricted on Amazon and they are restricted for many different reasons. Some companies may have exclusive agreements with Amazon or with one or more Amazon sellers. Some brands are counterfeited so heavily that they require sellers to obtain their goods directly through the manufacturer, and you will need to be approved by them as an authorized reseller before you can list their items. Some items can be listed, but only in Used condition. If your business model includes Retail Arbitrage (RA), it’s always a good idea to have the Amazon Seller app downloaded on your phone or tablet so you can check if a product is restricted when you are out sourcing for items. When you scan an item, it will indicate whether [...]

How To Use Live Chat To Increase Your Profit Margins

Next time you find yourself using the Live Chat feature on your favorite shopping website, try asking the operator for a coupon code. Many of them are trained to offer coupon codes to shoppers who simply ask for one. Just be sure to be polite in order to increase your chances of scoring. For more information and a list of stores that have been known to offer these coupons you can check out the full blog post from rather-be-shopping.com.

Inventory Stored In Warehouses In Virginia Does Not Constitute Nexus

The issue of sales-tax nexus has been a hot button topic for a couple of years now, and today the Virginia Department of Taxation had some good news for e-commerce sellers. They announced their decision that simply having inventory stored in warehouses in Virginia does not constitute nexus, and sellers who have no other presence in the state need not collect or remit sales taxes. This is a big win for Amazon FBA sellers, and maybe other states will follow Virginia's lead and this will become a trend moving forward. Here are a few articles for more information: http://www.tax.virginia.gov/laws-rules-decisions/rulings-tax-commissioner/15-194 http://blog.taxjar.com/virginia-sales-tax-nexus-fulfillment-centers/  

Under Armour Restriction Beginning November 1st

Amazon recently announced that Under Armour would become a restricted brand beginning on Nov. 1, 2015. Here is the email that was sent to sellers: Dear FBA seller, Amazon strives to provide the best possible experience for customers. As part of our ongoing efforts, we are implementing approval requirements for certain Under Armour products in the Sports category. You can find a list of the products for which approval will be required at the bottom of this email. Effective November 1, 2015, you will no longer be eligible to list these products on Amazon.com, and your listings for these products will be removed. There is no adverse impact on your seller account for the removal, but we request that you refrain from relisting removed products. Also, effective immediately, we will no longer accept inbound shipments of the affected ASINs to FBA. However, if you have remaining inventory of these ASINs [...]

Arbitrage: The Basics

According to Webster, “arbitrage” is “the practice of buying something (such as foreign money, gold, etc.) in one place and selling it almost immediately in another place where it is worth more. While the word doesn’t perfectly represent what we do as online sellers, it’s pretty close. The objective of every seller is to find inventory that can be bought at a price that allows for it to be resold on some online platform (Amazon, eBay, etc.) at a profit. At its core, arbitrage for the online seller is about finding deals that can be bought and sold for a profit. There are two main models to follow to accomplish this. The first arbitrage model is to find products priced severely under retail prices and sell them at or below the regular retail price for a profit. The second arbitrage model involves finding products that can be bought at retail [...]

Adversity Equals Prosperity? Struggling Your Way to Success

Many years ago I had a neighbor that sold new two way radio equipment for a local dealer. He had a customer that wanted to buy 100 new radios but he wanted to use his old radios as trade-ins. Well, his dealership didn't take trade-ins.It turns out at the time most dealers didn't. He knew I sold on Ebay a little and he really wanted to get this deal done so he asked if I could help him sell the used equipment. Now I knew absolutely nothing about this equipment but this isn't the first time I jumped into the unknown. Well it turned out they sold pretty well and we made a pretty good profit and he completed the deal. So my entrepreneurial mind started churning and I told him that I thought this might be a great opportunity to make money. He could be the expert, get the [...]

How To Complete and Pay for a Wholesale or Liquidation Deal

I frequently get calls from new or inexperienced buyers in this business. More often than not they have no idea how this business works so I wanted to give some knowledge of what you can expect if you decide to make the leap. I may sound like I'm being harsh here. That's not my intent. But if you are going to do this you need to know how the game is played and what you are up against. Whether I'm selling a truckload or a lot of 100 new products I will frequently get the comment "I want to buy a much smaller lot and if I like it I will buy more." If you say this there is a chance that your supplier will hang up on you. If the MOQ (minimum order quantity) is a truckload or 100 units that is the minimum order. If you try to [...]

The term “wholesale” is thrown around a lot but what is it really?

     The term "wholesale" is thrown around a lot but what is it really? I guess in the purest sense it's when the manufacturer or distributor sells new product to the retailer. So when you see the stores that are essentially selling retail but call themselves wholesale that's not really wholesale. If you're buying pallets or truckloads of even new product that's probably not wholesale in the real sense. I've had people argue with what's wholesale and what's liquidation and I understand the point. The real point is they are just titles and different people have different definitions for different words. So don't get caught up in what a given load is called. It doesn't matter. If you're buying products to re-sell you're looking at a few things most of which are liquidation in some form or another. 1. Returns. (Product that was sold and returned to the store) [...]

5 Tips For New Buyers of Wholesale or Liquidation Pallets

This post is for those who are new to using LTL (less than full load) truck service to deliver pallets. #1. Post your City, State & ZIP in your Wanting to Buy Ads If you are posting a WTB (Wanted to Buy) ad, it will streamline communications if you list your City, State, and Zipcode. Wholesalers can then estimate freight to see if an offer is even viable to present to you. #2 Post whether you have a residential or commercial address. Carriers often charge extra for residential delivery and weight restrictions on some roads can complicate those deliveries. Carriers will also expect that you have the means to unload which include a standard height truck dock, a pallet jack (most trucks DO NOT CARRY unless requested), and a forklift to unload pallets from the tail end of the trailer to ground level in the absence of a dock. You [...]

9 Tips for Finding Inventory Sources

I keep seeing people asking for the best place to buy from. This takes a little bit of work and luck. Now luck is a funny thing because it seems to find people more often that work harder or put themselves in positions to get lucky. Go to any places you find locally. They may be a middleman. Their prices and terms may not be good enough for you, but you can still get information from them. You can also let them know items you are looking for so they can contact you. Develop a relationship and see what you can learn, even if they didn't intend to tell you anything. Go through Craigslist. Talk to the people. Again let them know what you are looking for. Needle them for info. Find out what other products they get and how often. Talk to your acquaintances. They may have a brother [...]

There Are Buyers And There Are Shoppers When It Comes To Truckloads

     There are buyers and there are shoppers when it comes to wholesale, liquidation and closeout truckloads. Shoppers rarely turn into buyers and it's mainly because they are uneducated or uninitiated in to this business. They can learn but they have to be open to it and pursue that education. They have to take a bit of risk and take that first step.       Here's how a typical truckload sale goes. A seller puts out an offer of XYZ Truckload. Potential buyers inquire by email or phone to get some basic information. If the seller is reputable or has experience with the buyer then the next step is for the seller to send an invoice to the buyer. Shipping is worked out and coordinated. Next the buyer wires the full amount to the seller. Lastly, the seller ships the truckload to the buyer. It's really that simple. Of [...]

How to Find and Use Tax Settings in Amazon Seller Central

One of the more confusing parts of selling on Amazon.com is figuring out sales tax settings. This guide is meant to help you navigate the tax settings section, NOT to give you advice about how you should set up yours. Please consult with a professional if you don’t feel comfortable making the decisions we’ll talk about below. To get to the tax settings area in Seller Central, go over to “Settings” in the top right corner and hover over it until a menu appears. Select “Tax Settings” from the list. Here you will see three links under “Welcome to the Tax Manager” paragpraph. The first is a thorough overview all of the technical information about Amazon’s tax methodology. I would recommend that you or your CPA review this information. The second link is a list of all of the tax codes and the rules for each. We use the general [...]

How to check the Returns Report in Seller Central on Amazon

Returns are a part of business. Everyone gets them, and nobody likes them, but it’s important to keep track of your returned items as some may be unfulfillable and need to be removed from the warehouse. You do this through the Returns Report available through Seller Central. Here are the simple steps to access that report: Click on “Reports” at the top of the page in Seller Central. Select “Fulfillment” from the option in the pull-down menu. On the left, under Customer Concessions, click “Returns.” Where you see “Event Date,” select whichever period of time you’d like to track. I like to do a month at a time. After you select the period you are interested in, select “Generate Report.” Here you will see all of the items returned during that period, and on the far right you will see the status. Most items are returned to inventory and resold, [...]

How to Reconcile Shipments and Get Reimbursements in Amazon FBA

When you ship items to Amazon.com, you expect them to be delivered and received into your inventory with no problems, but this isn’t always the case. items (and sometimes whole boxes or shipments) get lost or damaged at times. It’s important that you check on your shipments regularly to make sure that Amazon has fully received everything that you sent. Here’s how you do that: In Seller Central, click on the Inventory tab at the top left of the page, and select Manage FBA Shipments. Here you will see your shipping queue. Select the “Closed” option at the top of the queue to see only those shipments that Amazon has fully received. Now focus on the “Shipped” and “Received” columns. Look for shipments where the number of items received is fewer than the number of items shipped. When you find one of these, click on the name of the shipment [...]

How to use Keepa to analyze products for resale on Amazon

When deciding on what items to buy to resell on Amazon.com, it’s helpful to have some insight into some key pieces of information before pulling the trigger. Seeing a good sales rank today, doesn’t necessarily mean a product has been a good seller over time. It may have just sold yesterday so the rank dropped significantly. Another factor you might want to consider is whether or not Amazon carries the item, and if so, how often they go out of stock. Finally, if it is a product that Amazon carries, we want to see if Amazon aggressively price matches 3rd party sellers and what happens to the price when Amazon goes out of stock. Keepa is a great web tool and browser extension that can help us analyze all of this information at once. You can access it at keepa.com, or you can download the browser extension (my preferred method), [...]

How to Use Context Menu Search to Make your Online Sourcing More Efficient

Online sourcing can get tedious after copying and pasting title after title from the source site into Amazon.com, but Context Menu Search is a browser extension that eliminates this copying and pasting. First you need download the extension. The two browsers that I know this works on are Google Chrome and Firefox, so I’ve included those links below. Click here if you want to download this extension for Google Chrome Click here if you want to download this extension for Firefox Once you have downloaded the extension, you will need to customize it by going to the website and following the simple instructions about adding new sites to search. To customize the extension, you will need to go to any website and copy a portion of text and then right click. One of the options you will see will be “Context Menu Search.” Click on this, and a menu will appear [...]

How to fix suppressed listings on Amazon

From time to time, Amazon may suppress one or more of your listings. This means that nobody can see the listing, and your inventory will sit in the warehouse, costing your money, until you do something to change it back to active status. From Seller Central, hover over “Inventory” in the top left of the page, and then click on the first option, “Manage Inventory.” If you are using the Beta version of this page, click on the word “Suppressed” at the top left of the page. If you are using the old version, click on “Fix Suppressed Inventory” on the left menu. In the Beta version, simply click on the word “Suppressed” at the top left of the screen. From here, you can click on the word “Suppressed” next to any item you want to fix. In the older version of this page, you can simply pull down the [...]

Can you recommend a liquidator in my area?

     There is one question I've gotten the most and I want to answer it here. The question I'm getting is "I live in __________ area. Can you recommend a wholesaler/liquidator in my area?" Now if I could, I would be more then happy to do that. But in all honesty that is difficult to do. When you're buying wholesale, liquidations, closeouts etc. proximty has nothing to do with getting the best buy. I sell a lot of truckloads and 99.99% of them are purchased by people that are in states other then where the products are. That's the business.      Shipping and freight costs are inevitable and you need to factor that into your costs. You want the best product with the best profitably. To think that you go some place near you and get that is a bit unrealistic. Now of course its possible depending on where [...]

10 Tips for Selling Liquidation

Here a few tips I learned about Liquidation- Try to find liquidators close to you. You can do this by a simple google search. Use your city and keywords like closeouts, wholesale, liquidations, liquidators, surplus dealers and such. When you do find a liquidator, see if they sell retail as well. If they do, be EXTREMELY careful, Many places will cherry pick. Sometimes they will have pallets shrink wrapped with good items outside. Most places will not lie to you, but will not be free with information. When you do work with people, develop a good relationship. One liquidator would spend about an hour giving me pointers. Because of the relationship, he also let me know when good deals were available and sold to me at a lower price. I eventually even met his whole family. A personal relationship is one of the most valuable things. He is the one [...]

A Regular Pallet vs a Gaylord. What’s the difference?

When you're buying a pallet or even a truckload you are likely to see two different types of pallets.  Standard Pallet: First, you will see the standard pallet. This will be stacked with products as you're used to seeing. You will be able to see what is on the load, but you won't necessarily be able to tell the condition, other then the condition of the boxes. Most of the items will be medium to big in size. It will require processing but should be a pretty easy job. Gaylords: Secondly there are things called Gaylords. These are entirely different. They are essentially big boxes set on pallets. Products are dumped in these boxes over a period of time. They might have bigger items and they will have a lot of smaller items. If you choose this it's a lot like a grab bag. This load will take longer to [...]

Free shipping – Amazon Prime vs. non-Prime

If you are a Prime member, choosing Standard shipping and reselling is against Amazon rules. Free shipping with a prime account is different than the free shipping offered with a non-prime account. Let’s take a look: (I placed a countertop Microwave oven in the cart to see the shipping options) The Prime account has these 3 options for shipping : FREE No-Rush Shipping (5 business days) Get a $1 credit for eBooks, digital music and videos. FREE Standard Shipping (3-5 business days) FREE Two-Day Shipping — get it Wednesday, July 8 So, since I am a Prime member, I automatically get free 2-day shipping, but I can opt for free Standard shipping (3-5 day), or I can get the 5 day “no-rush” shipping, in which case Amazon will give me a $1 credit on a digital purchase. The non-prime account has these options: FREE Two-Day Shipping with a free trial [...]

How to use the calculator widget to quickly calculate profit on Amazon

When sourcing online, it’s nice to be able to quickly calculate your potential profit. Fortunately there’s a browser extension that connects you to Amazon.com’s FBA calculator to help make this process a one-click operation. Just follow the steps below when you find a product you’d like to check: 1. First you need to install the extension, so do a simple Google search for “FBA Calculator Extension.” 2. Find the link that applies to the browser you use and click it. 3. Download the Calculator Widget and it should appear in the top right side of your screen, to the right of your URL bar. 4. When you find a product on Amazon you’d like to check, simply click on the calculator icon from the Amazon.com product page. 5. This opens a new window, and it usually populates the ASIN field with the ASIN of your product. If not, you may [...]

How to Find and List a Missing Variation on an Existing Listing

Often when I am sourcing items that have color or size variations, I’ll find sizes or colors that are on the listing when I buy them, but by the time I get them listed the size or color I purchased is not longer on the site. Fortunately, there is a solution. When you find a listing with only some of the variations listed, there’s a simple trick to find the sub-ASIN for the other variations. If you don’t have the sub-ASIN, you can’t list your exact variation, so this is important. Simply follow the simple steps below and you’ll be listing your items in no time. 1. Go to the main listing for your product. 2. Copy the main ASIN from the Product Description section. 3. Open up Seller Central in a new tab. 4. Hover over the “Inventory” tab at the top left. 5. Select “Add a Product” from [...]

How to Choose a Prep Company for Your Amazon Business

Product prep companies will process your inventory when you can’t, or just don’t want to. Since there are many to choose from, it will be helpful to discuss some of the important factors to consider when choosing which company to work with. There are many companies out there who will receive, process, pack, and ship your products, but they are each unique in pricing and services offered. The first factor to consider is the cost for the prep company to process your inventory and the cost of materials used in this process. One pricing model, which I call a sliding scale, is offered by Central Wisconsin Prep Pack and Ship, and Fulfillment Butler, two of the many prep companies out there. They offer a flat rate for their box fee, but they offer a sliding scale for everything else that needs to be processed. If an item simply needs a [...]

How to List a Product for Sale on Amazon.com

When you are first starting out, figuring out even the simplest tasks can seem overwhelming. Listing products is a task you will be completing over and over. There are two ways to list your products for sale, and we’ll cover the steps for both below. The first method involves scanning in the barcode (or typing it in if you don’t have a desktop barcode scanner) into the Amazon search bar on Amazon.com. When you do this search, your product will show up if it is already listed on Amazon. If not, you’ll have to create a new listing, but that’s a different article. Assuming you find your product, select it and you will be taken to the product page for that item. Now follow the steps below to list your product. On the right hand side of the page, scroll down until you see “Have One to sell?” Click on [...]

How to Fix Your Amazon FBA Stranded Inventory

From time to time, one or more of your listings may become “stranded.” This means that your inventory will sit in the warehouse, costing your money, until you fix the reason it has become stranded. From Seller Central, hover over “Inventory” in the top left of the page, and then click on the first option, “Manage Inventory.” This will bring you to your “All Inventory View” of your inventory. On the left you will see an option to “Fix Stranded Inventory.” Click that, and your list of stranded inventory will show up. From here, find a product you want to fix, and click on the “Actions” dropdown menu immediately to the left of the status of your item. A menu of options will appear. Sometimes the only option will be to create a removal order. Other times you need to convert your inventory to “Fulfilled by Amazon.” Even if you [...]

How to Edit an Existing Listing on Amazon

When you have a listing on Amazon and you want to change something about it - Add photos, change photos, add more bullet points, add or edit the description, or change anything about listing, this is how you do it: From the Seller Central page, hover over the Inventory tab and click “Manage inventory,” and then go to the “All Inventory” view. From here, find the product you want to edit by doing a simple search. There is an “Action” tab immediately to the left of each product and a “down arrow”. Click the arrow next to the product you wish to edit and select “edit details”. From this screen, you can basically go through each and every one of the tabs at the top of the screen to add or edit details. If you are reselling an item that you purchased through Retail Arbitrage or Online Arbitrage, you may [...]

How to check an Amazon FBA Seller’s Available Quantity

When making a buying decision, it’s often useful to know how many of the product that competing sellers have in stock on Amazon.com. You may only have 2-3 competing sellers on a listing, or you may have hundreds. Knowing their stock levels can help you make better buying and repricing decisions. There is a simple way to check a seller’s stock level, and this even works with Amazon as a seller sometimes. On products where Amazon is limiting quantities, it’s impossible to see their total stock level, but when they do not have these limits in place, this trick works for them as well. Here’s what you do. Once you have pulled up your product page, find the seller you want to check on, and add one of his or her products to your cart. Don’t worry, you aren’t going to be buying it. Go to your cart, and select [...]

How to check the total number of products in a category on Amazon

When making a buying decision, many Amazon sellers rely on the rank of an item. Unfortunately, knowing the rank alone without knowing what that rank means in a given category can be useless, or even worse, lead to some really bad buys. To give the rank of an individual item some context, we need to know how many total items are in that category. A toy that is ranked 40,000 is much different from a home and kitchen product that is ranked 40,000. Why? Because the toy is in a category that has less than 10% of the total number of products than the home and kitchen category at the time of this writing. There are currently 4.2 million toy listings and 45 million home and kitchen listings. So, how do you find out how many items are currently being sold in a given category? Simply go to Amazon.com and [...]

How to view products beyond the top 100 in a category on Amazon

Sometimes, when researching products to sell on Amazon.com, it’s important to be able to go beyond the top 100 best-sellers that Amazon automatically shows when you click “Best Sellers” after you have chosen a category. Fortunately there is a simple solution that allows you to see 400 pages worth of deals in a given category or subcategory. Simply choose your category on Amazon.com and leave the search bar blank. You will be taken to that category’s main page. From here, find “Best Sellers” at the top of the screen. Doing this pulls up the top 100 items in that category. To move beyond this top 100, simply put the left bracket symbol ([) and the right bracket symbol (]) in the search bar with nothing in between them. So, your search bar should look like this: []. Once you put the two brackets in the search bar, click to search, [...]

How to add a sales tax exemption to your Amazon Account

One strategy to find products to resell on Amazon or eBay is to look on Amazon for items selling far below what they normally do. If you are going to buy products from Amazon.com to resell, I would recommend setting up a separate Non-Prime buying-only account just for your AZ to AZ flips. One of the main reasons to do this is that you can add your sales tax exemption/reseller’s certificate to you buying account. Doing this allows you to buy all of your AZ purchases that are for resale tax free. How do you do this? It’s pretty simple. Log in to your Amazon account first. Then click where it welcomes you with “Hello, XXXX” and “Your Account” directly under it at the top right side of your screen. Once you click on this, your account options will show up. Go to the third box down titled, “Settings.” In [...]

How to understand rankings on Amazon

In our warehouse, we create a lot of Amazon product pages. I am always interested to see what rank a new product achieving its first sale will receive. Knowing how to read this information will help you make more intelligent buying decisions. In this example, we created a bundle in the toy category. Since we created it, there were no other sellers, and no sales rank history of any kind. When the first one sold, for a short period of time the ranking was displayed on the product page -  2,181,642. That is a pretty good indicator of active listings within the particular category. After the rankings recalculated, the new rank was posted - 66,291. So after only one sale, EVER, it achieved a 66k ranking. That places it squarely in the top 2% of the category.  Does this begin to make you wonder about the toys that you have [...]

The New Wholesale Buyer and Great Expectations

     As I've suggested in previous posts, buying wholesale, liquidation, closeouts etc. can be a slippery slope. There's a lot of product out there to buy but there are far fewer opportunities to get good deals. But it's not just the sellers that are troublesome. Finding good buyers can be difficult as well. I had a buyer that was a big company. They bought tens of thousands of dollars of product every month. For all intents and purposes a great customer. So I sell him his first load. Now this is a load we've bought before and have sold ourselves via our local online auctions. We have always done very well with this load. Our customer get's the load and begins to complain. We are at a loss because we know these loads very well, but things can happen. So we apologize and we are willing do whatever it takes to [...]

A Truckload Is A Truckload. What are you actually buying?

There is a lot more to buying a truckload of anything then a lot of people understand. If you don't understand this at worst you can get burned and at best you may be disappointed. There are people that say I don't buy returns. I only buy new. That's fine, but you have to find the new products and then plan on paying significantly more than you will with returns. If you are good with those things you are set. The fact is returns get kind of a bad rap. But you need more then just the term "return" to decide what you want to buy. The thing is there is different grades of returns. You can see two offerings of truckloads from the same Big Box with a vast difference in pricing. Of course you classify it simply "returns" and you buy the cheap one. But you didn't necessarily make the [...]

The First Deal is the Hardest and Most Important in Wholesale.

The First Deal is the Hardest and Most Important in Wholesale. The toughest part of getting into the business of buying or selling truckloads of wholesale, closeouts, returns, shelf pulls etc is always completing the first deal. People making their first buy from a wholesale company are scared to death they are going to get cheated or ripped off and they should be scared. This business has more then it's share of sketchy characters. But there are good people and good opportunities out there. This business isn't for the faint of heart or the lazy. So a buyer sees a deal he or she likes but has never worked with the business selling it. There's a lot happening before the deal is completed and many times it wrecks the deal. Here are some things you need to know. First myth: "I'm the buyer so I control everything in this deal [...]

Amazon Holiday Selling Guidelines 2014

If you are a new seller on Amazon and want to experience the 4th Quarter spike in sales, then the TOYS category is a great place to be. Make sure you meet Amazon's requirements to sell toys in Q4. These rules are listed in the following email, sent to Amazon sellers prior to Q4 2014. The requirements are basically the same each year, although you want to be sure to review the email when it arrives for the upcoming year. FBA sellers in good standing are not subject to these rules. Hello from Amazon Services, To maintain a great customer experience this holiday season, we are announcing the holiday selling guidelines for the Toys & Games store. Effective November 18, 2014, only sellers who meet the following criteria will be eligible to sell in the Toys & Games category from November 18, 2014 through the first week in January 2015. [...]

eBay Arbitrage is Alive and Well

Back in the early days of eBay, many of us were buying items that were improperly listed on the site, and flipping them right back on eBay for more money. At the time, images were not required, and eBay charged when you added pictures, so many people would list without images. You could buy an item off eBay, add some photos, relist, and make money. Incomplete listings were also a source of good finds. Sometimes the seller would list an item and have no idea what it was. I bought and sold classic car parts for many years. Some sellers would list a part and not know what the part was called, so they would just list the number that was stamped on the part or printed on the box. If I searched for D1Z* for example, I could pull up every 1971 Mustang part that was listed by part [...]