Over the years, Amazon has become one of the most popular online marketplaces not only for shoppers but also for sellers who want to start their e-commerce businesses. But with almost 2 million active sellers on the platform, you might feel intimidated as a beginner.
While the competition on Amazon seems overwhelming, this should not stop you from fulfilling your goals and starting your business. Instead, it would help if you learned the basics and some of the best practices experienced sellers recommend to the new ones. This way, you can avoid making grave mistakes affecting your brand reputation and resources.
In this article, you will learn ten proven ideas on how to start your e-commerce business on Amazon and thrive despite the competition.
1. Do your research to find a profitable niche
Before you invest your time and resources, especially in an Amazon business, you must take time to research first. This way, you can learn more about the field you are getting in and strategize according to the information you have gathered.
One of the things you do beforehand is choose a niche that is both profitable and well-suited to your interests and skills. To narrow down your options, you should look for a niche with high demand and low market saturation. Once you have identified this, you will most probably make huge sales and earn a profit.
Moreover, ensure that you are knowledgeable and passionate about your chosen niche. This way, you will enjoy running your business, develop more products, and better connect with your customers. Lastly, it would help if you do your research to ensure that your chosen niche has a viable market. Otherwise, consider other potential niches from your list.
2. Gather information about your competition
Another important factor to consider in starting an Amazon business is your competition and product offerings. This will help you develop strategies to differentiate your product and establish your business well on Amazon. Moreover, this will help you overcome your worries as a new seller.
To gather information about your competition, you can first look at their product listings. Observe their photos, description, pricing, and A+ content if applicable. It would also be best for you to read their seller feedback and product reviews on Amazon and other platforms to know their previous customers’ experiences.
But if you want to research further, review their Amazon advertising campaigns using advanced software to identify which keywords and strategies they use.
3. Create a business plan and budget
Spending money to start a business is no joke, so you must create a detailed business plan and budget. It will help you map out your costs, estimate your potential profits, and set realistic goals. However, keep it flexible because your costs and revenues may change over time.
To get started, list your start-up costs, including inventory, shipping, packaging, and branding. Next, research the average cost of similar products on Amazon so that you will know how to price your products.
Lastly, calculate your estimated production and shipping costs and other expenses you might incur along the way. Once you have a good understanding of your costs, you can begin to set sales forecasts for your first year in business and build a marketing strategy.
4. Source your products from reliable suppliers at the right price point
After identifying your niche and business plan, you can now look for suppliers or manufacturers who can provide high-quality products at a competitive price. They must also be reliable in meeting your inventory needs and have responsive customer service to help you address your concerns.
If you have no idea where to supply your products, you can search for lists of suppliers, overseas or not. However, you can also ask for recommendations from other Amazon sellers.
Once you have created a list of potential suppliers, you must read reviews about them on forums and look for comments that show their irresponsibility or poor services. You can also ask for samples before ordering in bulk to experience their services and see their products firsthand.
5. Set up your Amazon seller account
Before you wonder what to sell on Amazon FBA, you must set up your seller account first. Before you fill out the form, prepare these requirements beforehand: phone number, tax information, government-issued national ID, working credit card, bank account, and routing numbers.
Afterward, decide whether you will use an Individual or Professional plan. If you choose the Individual plan, you must pay $0.99 per item sold. On the other hand, if you go with the Professional plan, you must pay $39.99 per month. However, you can change your plan if you are still unsure about which one to select or if you acquire more customers.
6. Create an attractive and optimized listing for your product
Creating an attractive and well-optimized product listing is essential to driving sales and growing your business. Since Amazon is currently using the A10 algorithm for its search engine, you must learn some best practices that have helped many Amazon sellers increase their click-through rates.
These practices include conducting keyword research to determine which keywords are best to integrate into your product title, bullet points, and description. Then, your bullet points and description must highlight your product’s features and benefits and provide complete information about your product, like a sizing guide or ingredients list.
In addition, you must include high-quality photos that will give potential buyers a clear idea of what your product looks like. It would also be best to add a product video or 360-degree images to entice them to purchase and prevent returns.
7. Market your products through social media, email marketing, and paid advertising
Marketing your Amazon business can seem like a daunting task, but multiple channels can help you reach your target audience and boost your sales.
You can use social media to connect with potential customers and build relationships with them by replying to their comments and questions. However, ensure to regularly post interesting content to engage more people to purchase your products.
Email marketing is another great way to reach potential customers when they sign up to be part of your email list. It would also help to use this platform to interact with current customers and promote new items.
Finally, take advantage of Pay-Per-Click (PPC) advertising, which is available on Amazon and other social media platforms. Using the right keywords for your ads campaign will make your products more visible on the search engine results page (SERPs) even though you are just a new seller.
8. Monitor your sales and make necessary changes
Running an Amazon business requires constant vigilance, so you can never be too complacent. Because multiple factors can impact sales, such as products’ seasonality, customer demand changes, and competition, you must monitor your sales closely. By doing this, you can identify trends and adjust your pricing, product listing, fulfillment method, and marketing strategy.
Furthermore, try to stay up-to-date on Amazon’s policies and procedures because they change over time. Therefore, it would be best to be active on Amazon seller forums to be updated with their news and updates.
9. Ship orders promptly and maintains high customer satisfaction ratings
Because you know that getting customers on Amazon is not easy, you must strive hard to provide your buyers with excellent services, especially on shipping. This way, you can gain positive feedback that can improve your ranking on SERPs and boost your sales.
So before shipping your customers’ orders, you must keep a close eye on your inventory levels so that you can ship the right items as soon as they are ordered. Whether you use a fulfillment service or not, you must ensure that your orders are packed well and shipped quickly to your customers to avoid causing inconvenience.
10. Grow your business over time
While it can be tempting to try to grow your business as quickly as possible, it would be best to take small steps and consistently make an effort to improve your services.
Before taking your business on a different platform, you must ensure that you have a solid customer base on Amazon. Then, continue providing excellent products and customer service and offering competitive prices so that you can establish a good reputation in the e-commerce industry.
Furthermore, you should keep expanding your product catalog and add new products that appeal to your target market. This way, they will always have something to look forward to from your brand.
Indeed, starting a business on Amazon is not easy, but your efforts and investments will be worth it if you follow the ideas shared in this article. These include researching a profitable niche, gathering information about your competitors, and creating a business plan and budget.
Moreover, you should find a reliable supplier, set up your Amazon seller account, create a well-optimized listing, and market your products using different channels. Lastly, it would help if you monitor your sales, make necessary adjustments, ship orders promptly, and grow your business over time. If you need help managing your business as a new Amazon seller, consider availing yourself of full account management from a reputable agency.