Cost and Time Effective Strategies to Start Selling on Amazon
1. Dip just your toe in.
No one says you have to offer all your products on Amazon. Familiarize yourself with Amazon by just putting up a few products to start.
Putting up a few products at the get-go allows you to learn some of the administrative processes so you can ultimately streamline or eliminate them.
It is likely you are coordinating Amazon with outside systems, training people for these new activities or going through an Amazon-specific process for the first time. Give yourself a chance to be successful by understanding what you are doing before you try to improve it.
For anyone still not sold on diversifying to Amazon, remember this:
The reality is that your competitors are already selling on Amazon.
How do you make sure your brand is part of the Amazon customer consideration set? If you’re not there, your competitors are eating up Amazon customer demand –– more than 200MM active customers and over $100B of sales annually.
It’s worth it to have even a few products on there as an additional sales channel.
2. The Folding Chairs and Tables example.
A great example of this “just dip your toe in” approach is the online store Folding Chairs and Tables.
They sell custom folding chairs and tables, and launched on Amazon with 1 product before the holiday in 2016 — a bundled chair and table package of their website best sellers.
They sold out and ended up having to remove their Amazon listings for a period of time due to the high orders.
Over time, they were able to restock at appropriate levels factoring in the added volume from Amazon and now are having great success on Amazon and their webstore across a variety of SKUs.
This is the benefit of going slow –– you can pull down, readjust back office and manufacturing needs and then get back up, running and making money FAST.
3. Reinvent your brand for Amazon.
If conflict and time are a concern, another strategy is to sell your products under a new brand name.
They can be the identical items, bundles or variations available only on Amazon.
This allows you to gain access to Amazon’s huge customer base and try different prices or packages without affecting your standard products and established brand.
Plus, you can put up these items without worrying about how it affects your entire catalog, which should speed up any internal approval process.
“Amazon Only” brands give you new freedoms to cater to specific markets and is an excellent way to test for new products.
Let’s take a closer look at that Folding Chairs and Tables example –– notice how all items they are selling on Amazon are sets, or bundled?
This is not how they sell on their main site.
Instead, on Amazon, they sell bundled chair and table sets –– while on their web store, they sell individual items (often at bulk for B2B) with financing options.
Two strategies – two strong revenue channels.
4. Make others do the work.
Expedited shipping, feedback, ratings, optimization and sponsored search are often new frontiers to your business.
These are all legitimate and demand a new Amazon seller’s attention, but wonderfully there are many solutions to these problems.
Outsourcing these activities that are highly unlikely to be your strength is not only affordable but also quite effective.
Thousands of Amazon professionals are available for $3-$10 per hour.
In the same way, Amazon lets you outsource the promotion and customer acquisition of your products, services like Freeeup, Upwork and Lancer let you outsource the activities that are unique to the Amazon marketplace.
Example of freelance experts on Upwork
No one knows the business better than the business itself.
Joining Amazon can be intimidating, but by sculpting how one enters the Amazon marketplace in a way that fits your goals and company structure, it can be done with limited risk.
Once the business is up and running, many programs can be used to simplify the selling process.