For those of us who haven’t been blessed with great technical skills or fantastic business ideas, e-commerce is an approachable, easy way of starting up an online business. Selling on Amazon has huge advantages; almost anyone can open an Amazon seller account and immediately have their products on offer to a huge audience, for a low monthly subscription fee.
For those of us who haven’t been blessed with great technical skills or fantastic business ideas, e-commerce is an approachable, easy way of starting up an online business. Selling on Amazon has huge advantages; almost anyone can open an Amazon seller account and immediately have their products on offer to a huge audience, for a low monthly subscription fee. If you consider how much it might cost you to open a physical shop or market stall; renting the space, paying bills, hiring staff, travel costs; they all add up very quickly and if you choose the wrong location you might find yourself with no customers. Selling online lets you reach more customers wherever they are and without the costs.
An advantage to using Amazon over other online marketplaces such as eBay is the existing catalogue of products. When you list something to sell on Amazon you simply add your offer to the existing listing, no writing product descriptions or photography needed. On top of that, you have access to Amazon’s FBA service. FBA or Fulfilment by Amazon allows anyone who is selling on Amazon to make use of their warehouses, distribution networks and customer services.
Keeping your home clutter free
One of the downsides to starting an online business from home for many people is the time and space required. Your cat might be thrilled at the prospect of your house starts filling up with cardboard boxes, but you would probably like to keep your space clutter free. On top of space issues you might find that running back and forth to the post office every time you make a sale quickly gets annoying. Let’s face it most people want to start their own business so they can have more free time to spend doing the things they love, not to work longer hours than they did in their 9-5 job. Fulfilment by Amazon takes all of these problems out of your hands, for a price of course! You need to weigh up the benefits in terms of saved time and space required against the costs. There are many aspects to the service that you can take advantage of and you only pay for the facilities you use which means you can use it as little or as often as you like.
Setting up your Amazon business
All you need to start an Amazon business is an address and bank account in the region you wish to sell, i.e. a UK address/bank account for Amazon.co.uk.
An email address, phone number and business registration details are required if you wish to run as a registered business. Registering a business is an intimidating concept. For most of us dealing with taxes isn’t exactly high on the list of things we want to do, but it is necessary if you want to make a serious living through selling on Amazon. It’s tempting to put this sort of thing off and come back to it later but with loads of information online to help you figure out what you need to do, and plenty of advisors who can break it down into simple steps for you, it’s far better to get these things out the way early so you know where you stand.
Chances are you already have everything you need to run an Amazon business from home. Most of us have an internet connection either at home or through a smart phone, a printer is a necessity and can be found inexpensively second hand if necessary. If you plan to use FBA you will need a tape measure and scales to let Amazon know the size and weight of every box you ship to their warehouse. Packaging materials can be picked up cheaply and you may even have some at home already.
Getting to grips with selling on Amazon
Starting an Amazon business is easy, but like anything else it will take some time to learn all the features that will make your business run smoothly. Spend some time getting to know Seller Central, Amazon’s site for sellers; make sure you know where to find everything you need. The best way to learn about selling on Amazon is by doing it. There are lots of resources online but no amount of reading or training can compete with real experience. Start small with just a few items of stock and be prepared to make mistakes in the beginning.
Sourcing stock can be a huge pain point for many people wanting to set up an Amazon business. Many people will start out selling used items from their house or buying used items from charity shops, car boot or garage sales. This is a very low risk, easy way to test the waters with selling on Amazon before progressing to more expensive, new stock. The downside to selling used goods on Amazon is that you will usually only be able to find one or two of each item, it is not an easy business to scale up unless you want to spend huge amounts of time finding stock. Buying new goods allows you to buy in bigger quantities from wholesalers or even from retail shops.
One other very important point, is to make sure you are recording revenue, costs, and profit as taxation and legislation can be a minefield for new sellers. We recommend looking at a specialist accountant who can help to guide you through the process of filing your annual returns and help you to focus on what you do best – selling! Check out Osome, who are highly recommended.
How SourceMogul can help
Many people don’t realise that Amazon doesn’t always have the best price; there are lots of items which sell for much lower prices in high street shops than they do on Amazon. These products provide great opportunities to make a profit but they can be difficult to find. This is where SourceMogul can help.
If you sign up to SourceMogul.com you can quickly search tens of millions of retail products to find profitable items you can buy from high street brands to sell on Amazon every day. These products provide you with a profit after Amazon and FBA fees, so you can be confident in the margins you can make. We take the hard work out of sourcing for you, why spend hours trawling through stores, comparing prices on your phone when you can get a list of products with all the data related to them delivered directly to your computer, tablet or smartphone.
If you want to reduce the time it takes to source profitable products for Amazon resale – get started today with a 7 day free trial and find out how SourceMogul can help you to grow a protibale business!
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