Amazon seller? Get prepared.
No knight has ever gone to battle without his sword and no carpenter would show up without a hammer. While Amazon has some pretty incredible tools for selling on FBA (like the amazing Seller Central forums, mobile app and volume listing tool), sometimes you need to go beyond to find great tools.
In no particular order, here are the tools of the trade that Amazon sellers need to scale up sales.
The Price Is Right
Since this is the world’s largest marketplace, it’s natural that prices will fluctuate rapidly. There’s so many automated programs to ensure pitch-perfect pricing (and even to optimize your Buy Box changes) that you practically need a program to evaluate them. The most recommended ones we know are Feedvisor, SellerEngine, and Teikametrics. Feedvisor will even take care of private label pricing, by taking into account your internal inventory and calculating an optimum sale speed. And, of course, camelcamelcamel is incredible for monitoring general price shifts.
List well to sell well, and it’s critical that the listing is perfect. The descriptions need to catchy (get a good copywriter on Upwork!) and the images need to beautiful (try Pro FBA Images). But as you grow, you’re going to need to deal with more products, bulk edits, and – most importantly – synchronizing all of those product listings across different sales channels – like eBay, Amazon, and Newegg. Some standout companies that can do that include Kyozou, Solid Commerce (which also can do inventory management, repricing, order management and vendor management), and Browntape.
By the way, once you have your products listed, you’re going to want to protect that listing. More and more often, black-hat Amazon sellers are “hijacking” listings, getting onto your product listing (even if their not selling the exact same product). As a result, you could lose the Buy Box, or even pay for the Listing Eagle to come in, helping you monitor and respond immediately to black hatters.
Pricing and listing an item right is worth nothing if the market is saturated, or if the product isn’t in demand. But searching around yourself on Amazon is a sure way to spend a lot of time doing nothing. Jungle Scout is a favorite that can estimate projected sales, Best Seller Rank, Buy Box share, Buy Box price and revenue. SellerMetrics is also great at tracking competitors, focusing on keyword rank, sales rank and reviews. Oh, and you can also install Amz if you want a great Chrome extension for in-page Amazon research.
Shipping to FBA
Getting your goods to Amazon has three steps:
- Labelling your goods with Amazon barcodes: Make sure you block internal codes, avoid putting barcodes on corners and only use high-quality, laser printed barcodes.
- Package the material: Pack it tight to keep the goods safe and package it well. Avoid string, tape, bags and packing material like confetti. Consolidate packages into larger boxes to save money on the shipping.
- Choose the carrier: In the US, just provide Amazon with the tracking number (or use an Amazon-approved carrier and your label will include the tracking code). If you’re shipping international…read on.
Using FBA fulfillment is practically a no-brainer for an advanced Amazon Seller. If you and another seller are both selling the same product, their ability to ship faster is going to help you both.
But how do you get your goods to the FBA factory? Amazon has some great partnerships for domestic shipping in the US. If you do need labeling and packaging assistance, look for companies like FBA Transport or My Fulfillment Team.
Of course, if you’re looking at international importing, Freightos’ online freight marketplace is a great way to instantly compare air, ocean and trucking quotes from multiple freight forwarders in seconds. And the Amazon FBA freight calculator can give you international freight estimates from around the world.
The bottom line? You’re not in this alone. Choose the right tools and you’re golden.