Ecommerce is on a roll and if you wish to make a career in online retail there is nothing better than getting on the Amazon marketplace. It is the topmost ecommerce platform in India and the world.
On the one hand it is easy to get on Amazon and start selling. However, beginners may not quite know how to get started. You may read instructions that appear below. On the other hand there is plenty of competition and selling as well as making profits may not be quite as easy as one assumes as you will read further in this post. You need to select the right products and price it right while also considering Amazon seller fees. These guidelines on how to sell on Amazon will help you get a better insight and then get started.
The Amazon platform
Amazon is global in nature and it has various sections covering North America, UK, Europe and Asia to name a few. Register and sell on Amazon and you get access to global buyers. Its Q4 revenue for 2018 stood at 72.38 billion US Dollars, up from USD 56.58 billion for Q3 of 2018. Its sales in 2018 amounted to USD 232 billion. There are 310 million active customers and it sells 12 million products in various categories. Apart from its mammoth B2C segment, Amazon also has a separate B2B channel. Amazon is a juggernaut. Get on the wagon and you will go places.
Whopping advantages to being an Amazon seller
If you start a business in any field you will need plenty of capital, plenty of know-how on marketing and investment in time and effort to sell as well as taking care of logistics. Amazon gives you a running start in every way:
- Amazon takes care of shipping. You just pack and keep product ready for courier pickup. If you join FBA then it gets even better. Amazon stores your products in its warehouses.
- Set up a store, sell on Amazon and you will have thousands of visitors in a short time. Sell through your website and you will find it tough to get buyers.
- Sellers on Amazon receive timely payment and full support.
- You pay only when you sell.
Amazon is a regular business platform so, when you register on Amazon you must have proper documents ready for the registration process. This is your first step on how to sell on Amazon.
Documents and registration
Sellers on Amazon must be legally registered entities. You will need the following registrations and associated documents to be ready at the time of registering with Amazon as a seller.
- PAN card – in the business name
- GST registration certificate of your business
- Bank account of your business, cancelled cheque
- Address proof for your business
- Your personal identity proof
- If you sell branded product then authorization from the company
Scan all the above documents.
As a beginner you may not know how to obtain PAN card or GST registration in which case you can always seek assistance for these as well as for the Amazon registration process.
How to sell on Amazon is a three part process: Register, Upload product listing and Sell. This is how you register as seller on Amazon:
- Navigate to sellercentral.amazon.in (If you are in India)
- Create an account by filling in primary details in the form displayed on the page.
- Your phone is verified with SMS. Once this is done you proceed further by logging into your account and to fill in another form for registration as a seller on Amazon.
- You will be required to upload documents as described above.
- Provided everything is in order you receive confirmation of your registration as seller.
You may not be familiar with online process in which case there is no reason to worry. You can always get assistance from Digicommerce for registration. The next step is to upload catalogue and list your products. This is where you stop and think before you proceed.
Choosing the right products to sell on Amazon
This is a very important step. You have to pick the right products to sell and list your products in that appropriate category on Amazon.
- You may need to conduct research on Amazon to know which products have momentum and volume. You need to maintain both in order to achieve solid revenues and growth.
- You must know about prices of products you plan to sell and compare them to your purchase price as well as costs you pay to Amazon as part of seller fees in order to know how much you will make. If you neglect this step you could well see a transaction resulting in a loss for you. Take help from digicommerce to pick the right products and price them right and make use of their online price calculator.
- Choose products you can sell regularly and in high volumes. Even if you get a low profit on each, you still will make a substantial amount.
- Beginners may think they can sell anything but it is not that easy. There are other sellers selling the same product and your price must be on par. They may buy in bulk and receive quantity discounts that enable them to sell at a lower price.
- You may look to profits but omit the volume of sales you can achieve. This is not a bad strategy provided you can manage to sell at a good margin. This tactic usually works for items such as handicrafts, for example. However, you may not be able to sell in high volumes.
- You must also know about restricted categories.
- Another factor to think seriously about is the probability of returns by buyers. This may be due to transit damaged products, buyer returning a product even if there is nothing wrong with it and buyer returning a product because it failed within the guarantee period or trial period. Returns can eat into your profits.
Upload products – product listing
Your storefront is allocated and you need to populate store window with your products. For this you upload product listing in bulk or individually. This is another important step because buyers look for information and for good quality photographs.
- Photograph products to make products look their best or hire professionals or let Digicommerce handle it for you.
- Write detailed description, reviewing your description from buyer perspective. Does it give all the information a buyer needs to help him decide?
There are two ways sellers on Amazon can handle shipping:
- One way is to be a normal seller on Amazon or merchant fulfilment. What this means is that when you receive an order you pack the product using Amazon approved packaging materials. Amazon courier service picks it up from your store and dispatches it onwards.
- You can join Amazon FBA program in which case you will send your products in bulk to Amazon warehouse and whenever an order is received Amazon people will pick and pack and ship. This of course implies charges you pay to Amazon but FBA sellers receive more orders since buyers prefer to click on FBA products on Amazon.
- Thankfully Amazon seller dashboard automatically tracks inventory but still you must keep an eye on inventory and replenish stocks well in advance.
- Payments can be complicated due to returns by buyers but again the dashboard gives you a precise view of payments you have received and reversed payments.
These are the basics. There are plenty of other things you will learn and do as you go along. You will want to promote your products on Amazon and other platforms. You will want to take advantage of Amazon sales and other program to increase sales and revenues. It helps to keep Digicommerce by your side from the start in order to be ahead and grow fast.