If you're interested in selling more online, you could be starting from a few potential points.
Maybe you already have an online store of your own and you're looking to break into a larger market. Maybe you're already selling on a large marketplace like eBay and you want to expand your reach. Or, maybe you're just starting out, you have no website or item listings anywhere, and you have yet to make a single sale.
These are very different situations, but they have a lot in common, and that's the potential to grow by finding new channels for your products to sell.
Amazon can be a lucrative marketplace for any online seller, whatever the current status of their business. In fact, if you're serious about eCommerce, you should definitely try to sell on Amazon.com.
Here's why it's worth it.
1. Low Initial Investment
Amazon is friendly to new sellers without much to start with. There's an active market for used and refurbished items, so you can start out selling things from yard sales, thrift stores, or even around your house. If you have some skill with rebuilding or refurbishing, all the better — fix up some small appliances so they work like new, or put a new battery in last year's laptop, and they'll be perfect for bargain-hunters.
Amazon's listing fees are relatively low, and as an individual seller you won't have to pay until something sells. Once you're ready to move up and start competing, a Professional Seller account is just $39.99 a month and opens up some powerful selling tools.
2. Reach Millions of Customers
Amazon is the first stop for millions of people shopping online, and boasts over 310 million active customer accounts. 65 million of these users are devoted enough to their Amazon shopping to invest in an Amazon Prime, the amazon subscription that includes access to special benefits.
What does this mean for you as a seller? It means creating products listings on Amazon gets them in front of the eyes of millions of interested shoppers. That's the kind of exposure that just can't be beat, especially for a growth-minded business!
When selling on Amazon's Marketplace, please note the different fees available by product categories, this can make a big difference when calculating the profit margin, specially for sellers doing retail arbitrage.
3. Benefit from Amazon's Reputation
Those millions of customers we just mentioned wouldn't be shopping on Amazon if they didn't trust the company. As an Amazon seller, you can gain some of that trust for yourself, which really helps when new customers are considering "taking the plunge" and buying from you the first time.
Amazon enforces a lot of rules to make their marketplace a safe, reliable place to shop. Buyers appreciate this, and know that Amazon sellers have to meet these standards to continue selling. Your presence on Amazon helps mitigate the risk some customers perceive about online shopping, so you can enjoy the benefits of Amazon's customer service, and that's a great thing for your business
4. Fantastic Shipping with Fulfillment by Amazon
Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) is a system in which you send your inventory to Amazon and they handle the picking, packing, and ship your products directly from their warehouse. Not only does this take the packing and shipping burden off your shoulders, it also means you can offer Prime shipping to those 65 million Amazon Prime members — who on average spend over 4 times as much than non-Prime shoppers.
Using FBA also means Amazon takes responsibility for any problems that arise during shipping, like late shipments, damaged items, or other issues. Your reputation as a seller doesn't take a hit.
5. Amazon Does its Share of the Work
When selling on Amazon, your customers are Amazon's customers first and foremost. Amazon handles most of the technical details to begin with, but they also do much of the customer service — especially if you use FBA. Amazon will take care of address changes, customer inquiries, order problems, and more.
With Amazon on your side, you'll find much of your valuable time freed up to work on other aspects of your business. You'll get a lot more done when you don't have to spend hours each day packing and shipping items or dealing with customer questions of the type Amazon itself could answer.
Selling on Amazon is a great step to take toward eCommerce success, but there's always more to learn, and more steps you can take to build your business. You should definitely have an online store of your very own to work alongside your Amazon sales — you'll have opportunities you can't have if you're just using one or the other, alone. Make sure you evaluate your options so you can choose the best eCommerce software for working with Amazon.
Besides, if you're using the right eCommerce platform, you don't even have to start selling on Amazon to receive some of the same benefits listed in this article — instead, you can start by implementing Amazon Pay on your online store. By allowing your customers to pay with their saved information from Amazon.com, you'll give them a convenient checkout and in turn receive the same trust that customers have in Amazon's reputation.
You should also check out our free ebook below, which will help you become further prepared to make the most of your Amazon business.