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Learning, Sharing, and Teaching => Entrepreneurship => Topic started by: CashFlowDiaries on October 06, 2016, 06:58:41 AM

Title: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: CashFlowDiaries on October 06, 2016, 06:58:41 AM
Hey everyone,  thought it would be cool to share this with you guys.    About 9 months ago I started looking into alternate ways to side hustle and make extra income.   I came across selling selling products on Amazon FBA and thought it would be a fun and exciting venture to start out.    So I started the process which included finding a product to sell, finding chinese suppliers/manufacturers to mass produce, shipping them to the united states via a sea cargo vessel, then shipping them to amazon fulfillment warehouses.

It has been a long, EXPENSIVE, and crazy journey but I have now been selling my product on Amazon prime going on month #2 right now and have sold over 200 units.  I had my best selling day yesterday in which I sold 11 units which makes me very giddy.   At the end of the day I put in a total of about $17k to startup (expensive product, selling it just under $40 a unit on amazon right now) and when all my items are sold, i should be clearing about $8k in profit.   That is $8k in profit after getting all my initial investment back plus expenses (amazon fees, etc).      That is over 40% ROI which is great.   Now I just need to see how long it takes to sale all my inventory.  If I can go through two cycles in one year of inventory then that is some nice extra money right there.   My first production count was 1000 units, this part of the reason why my start up costs were so high to begin with but I wanted a quality product and wanted to stand out from any competition.

So I have never seen anyone talk about this business venture on the forum and am curious if any of you are doing it as well?  Would love to hear about it.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: l2jperry on October 06, 2016, 07:24:28 AM
I also sell on Amazon, but I manufacture and fulfill my own orders daily. I do sell more popular items through FBA. Amazon is a great resource to make money, but you have to be very careful and play by their rules.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: CashFlowDiaries on October 06, 2016, 07:34:56 AM
I also sell on Amazon, but I manufacture and fulfill my own orders daily. I do sell more popular items through FBA. Amazon is a great resource to make money, but you have to be very careful and play by their rules.

Cool, I would love to be able to manufacture my own items.  That would really help prevent competition.  Competition is fierce on amazon and all the rules are scary.   Its scary trying to do this with all the horror stories I keep reading about suspended accounts, reviews being deleted, hijackers and all that stuff.

Ill keep my fingers crossed that it continues going well for me.

How long have you been selling on amazon and is it your full time gig or just a side hustle?
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: LiseE on April 17, 2017, 11:16:43 AM
Hi there ... I've been researching doing an Amazon FBA side hustle for the past month.  (I suffer from analysis paralysis!)  ... either that or I'm just chicken!  Was wondering how your Amazon business is going?  Hope you are doing well.

- Lise
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: mustache you a question on April 17, 2017, 06:47:01 PM
Hi there, I have a quick question for you.  When you first decided to sell on Amazon, how did you go about finding what product to sell?  I decided that this would be a great way for me to make some extra cash as a side hustle and I've done some research on it but still haven't been able to come up with an idea.

Thanks.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: CargoBiker on April 18, 2017, 09:52:38 PM
Competition is fierce on amazon

It is if you sell competitive products.  i.e. the ones the gurus preach that you should sell. There is lots of money to be made "under the radar".

Quote
and all the rules are scary.

What's scary about rules?  Read them. Follow Them.  You won't get suspended.  The horror stories you hear are mostly people trying to bend the rules and get around things. Doing so, because they are trying to sell products that are too competitive, with no real difference between their product and the next guy's, and the only way to compete is to try and get a rule-bending edge. 


For every 1 horror story you hear, there's 1,000 people who are doing just fine.


That being said, I do acknowledge the lack of control you have over your business if you sell exclusively on Amazon, and I would always recommend people to develop off-Amazon sales channels.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Fairviewite on April 20, 2017, 05:48:46 PM
Hey guys,

I've been selling on Amazon FBA since last July and have been having a great time with it. The company has been averaging approximately $2,000/month profit after paying for writers and our social media manager.

Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Wads on April 20, 2017, 10:15:35 PM
I've been selling a private label product using Amazon FBA for over 12 months now averaging 2-3K profit per month. I've mentioned this before but member here on MMM and the ERE forums don't seem interested. Not really sure why, I literally spend 1 hour on this per month, 99% automated.

To the OP, keep up the good work!

Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: CargoBiker on April 21, 2017, 09:42:39 PM
I've been selling a private label product using Amazon FBA for over 12 months now averaging 2-3K profit per month. I've mentioned this before but member here on MMM and the ERE forums don't seem interested. Not really sure why, I literally spend 1 hour on this per month, 99% automated.

To the OP, keep up the good work!

Members of this forum aren't really interested in anything to do with starting a business, in general. 

An Amazon-based business model is a bit more involved upfront, compared to your typical side hustle, but the end result, as you said, is thousands a month, with almost no work required.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: texxan1 on April 22, 2017, 06:46:51 AM
My brother does this, and brings home an extra $2000 a month. It has allowed him and his wife and kids to move to a LCOL area, build a brand new home and work part time.... They are quite happy, a lot more than before

His problem is finding new niche things for amazon... He only sells one item, but as baby boomers pass out of the corporate world his sales will go down

Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Clean Shaven on April 22, 2017, 08:07:40 AM
This sounds interesting. Could someone PM me a link to your FBA product? I think I'll look into this some, and am wondering what sort of items you are selling this way. (Or just post a link, but am not sure if that's OK with the forum rules.)
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: FarmerAl on April 22, 2017, 09:00:05 AM
Would one of you mind sharing how you started this process, how you decided which product to sell, startup costs, etc.?

I am very interested in this but I am not sure where to start. It obviously sounds like this can be profitable if done correctly.

Any insight would be appreciated.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: bwall on April 22, 2017, 01:29:49 PM
So I started the process which included finding a product to sell, finding chinese suppliers/manufacturers to mass produce, shipping them to the united states via a sea cargo vessel, then shipping them to amazon fulfillment warehouses.

What's to keep your Chinese supplier from getting an Amazon account and shipping to the fulfillment warehouses themselves? Then they can cut out the middleman (you) and capture your profit as well.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: xfactor9600 on April 22, 2017, 04:39:26 PM
Would one of you mind sharing how you started this process, how you decided which product to sell, startup costs, etc.?

I am very interested in this but I am not sure where to start. It obviously sounds like this can be profitable if done correctly.

Any insight would be appreciated.

Second this.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: CowboyAndIndian on April 22, 2017, 06:22:36 PM
Spencer Haws has quite a few articles on his blog

http://www.nichepursuits.com/tag/amazon-fba/

Lots of information for those looking.

Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: kurtnyc on April 25, 2017, 12:52:20 PM
I've mentioned this before but member here on MMM and the ERE forums don't seem interested.

I was one of those you talked with a long while back, much appreciated.
I then got interested, and invested, in buying existing web businesses (saas, affiliate) and improving them. But I'm still very interested in getitng into FBA. I actually did get some products up and sold, but had some bad luck as my product type got eliminated by amazon once a got a large order ready. but I have capital and would love to give it a go again.

I found it HYPER competitive in finding products, it's been a huge waive of people coming into FBA. However it's more the plethora of guru's that creeps me out honestly. I wish I could just sit down with someone doing FBA in my new town (asheville) and learn. But I get people are very protective, and that makes sense.

I'd love more chat her about these kind of businesses, free of people selling courses.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Wads on April 25, 2017, 05:16:27 PM
This sounds interesting. Could someone PM me a link to your FBA product?

No, this is very niche related and sharing this information with competition is a big no no.


Would one of you mind sharing how you started this process, how you decided which product to sell, startup costs, etc.?

Sure! Listen to every episode of The Amazing Seller Podcast and purchase the Jungle Scout Software, it will greatly reduce your search time for products.


I found it HYPER competitive in finding products, it's been a huge waive of people coming into FBA.

Agreed, lots of people are doing this now. You can still find successful products but you need to be very picky and have a solid game plan for reviews. The game has changed since I started and its much more difficult for newbies.

You don't need to pay for any courses. Listen to the podcast above or look on you tube. All the info you need is free. This process is not hard.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: CargoBiker on April 26, 2017, 04:46:21 AM
So I started the process which included finding a product to sell, finding chinese suppliers/manufacturers to mass produce, shipping them to the united states via a sea cargo vessel, then shipping them to amazon fulfillment warehouses.

What's to keep your Chinese supplier from getting an Amazon account and shipping to the fulfillment warehouses themselves? Then they can cut out the middleman (you) and capture your profit as well.

Some factories would do just that.  That's why I would never ship directly to an Amazon fulfillment center.  It's good practice to keep your manufacturer in the dark about where you sell the goods.

However, factories are in the business of making stuff, not in dealing with end users. They aren't necessarily looking to learn how to market and sell their products direct to consumers in other countries. They'd prefer to deal in bulk.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: CargoBiker on April 26, 2017, 04:52:40 AM
but had some bad luck as my product type got eliminated by amazon once a got a large order ready.

This happened to me 2 years ago in Amazon Europe, it's no fun.  I was lucky in that each country shut down the category at different times, so I got an early warning sign of sorts, and was able to drop my price and sell off the last few units a week or so before they banned the category in the last marketplace.

For this reason, I've since stayed away from anything that could ever remotely be considered something that would need to be removed from their site.

Quote
I found it HYPER competitive in finding products, it's been a huge waive of people coming into FBA.

There are millions of products on Amazon. Lots of gold is buried underneath the hyper competitive stuff.  I love products that don't have enough search results to fill up one page.  You literally just make a listing, and now you're the #1 guy for that search term.

Sure, these products move at a lower volume, but you just list more products to make up for it.  I'd rather have 10 slow moving, non-competitive products, then 1 hyper competitive product with all my eggs in one basket, so to speak.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: CargoBiker on April 26, 2017, 04:54:06 AM
This sounds interesting. Could someone PM me a link to your FBA product? I think I'll look into this some, and am wondering what sort of items you are selling this way. (Or just post a link, but am not sure if that's OK with the forum rules.)

Any product on Amazon, that is sold via Amazon Prime, that is not "sold by Amazon.com".

So millions of different kinds of products.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: 10dollarsatatime on April 27, 2017, 10:34:16 AM
I've been doing FBA for the past couple of years when I feel like it.  I'm trying to get a shipment out today, actually.  I started after hearing Jessica Larrew's interview on the SPI podcast.  After hearing it, I downloaded the Amazon seller app and just randomly started scanning things at a Staples when I was there for something else.  I found a few things the fell within her very simplified version of how to choose items, and took the leap.  The past couple of years, I've sold around $30,000, with maybe 25% of that being profit.  It's easy enough, and takes little time for the return on investment.  I always tell myself that I'm going to put more effort into it, but lack the motivation since I don't really need the money.  It's just a fun, profitable way to scratch my shopping itch right now.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: FarmerAl on May 01, 2017, 08:36:02 PM
I have been checking out Jungle Scout and found this million dollar case study they are doing.
A lot of good information. https://www.junglescout.com/the-million-dollar-case-study-overview/

Has anyone had issues when contacting suppliers, designing packaging, or shipping the product to the US?
It seems like there could be complications with this but most of the articles I have read make it seem like this whole process is very simple.

Thank you in advance for any insight.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: CargoBiker on May 02, 2017, 05:20:39 AM
I have been checking out Jungle Scout and found this million dollar case study they are doing.
A lot of good information. https://www.junglescout.com/the-million-dollar-case-study-overview/

Has anyone had issues when contacting suppliers, designing packaging, or shipping the product to the US?
It seems like there could be complications with this but most of the articles I have read make it seem like this whole process is very simple.

Thank you in advance for any insight.

The whole process IS pretty simple. 

There can be issues/problems dealing with overseas manufacturers, however.

I would recommend reading this book before importing anything. He pretty much covers everything in depth: https://www.amazon.com/Direct-China-Many-Other-Countries-ebook/dp/B01CLXLWFU
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: rachael talcott on May 02, 2017, 06:47:35 AM
Posting mostly to follow, but I made a few thousand last year doing retail arbitrage FBA (reselling stuff found at a discount locally).  I used that money to attempt to sell a private label product, and so far I'm losing money.  Once I retire I plan to put some more effort into it.  I think Cargobiker is correct that choosing non-competitive products is key. 
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: CargoBiker on May 02, 2017, 09:46:15 AM
I used that money to attempt to sell a private label product, and so far I'm losing money.  Once I retire I plan to put some more effort into it.  I think Cargobiker is correct that choosing non-competitive products is key.

Competition can be ok, but you have to know exactly what your plan is to deal with it.  I would never recommend it for someone just starting out.  I prefer just to not deal with it all anymore, but I have sold very high volume, high competition, products in the past.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Cwadda on May 02, 2017, 10:17:29 AM
I don't sell via FBA, but I've had a lot of success with selling things on Amazon. I made a guide for it, located in my signature.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: better late on May 06, 2017, 11:32:19 AM
I am very interested in this.

For those of you who have started selling on Amazon, can you tell me what types of start up costs you paid and approximately how much? How much does your product cost to manufacture and how much does it sell for?  I've started listening to the Jungle Scout podcast/videos (thank you Brandon FI and FarmerAl ) and he makes it sound pretty inexpensive...but the $17K from the original poster is making me wonder.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: stashing_it on May 07, 2017, 12:44:19 AM
I am also very interested in this and would love to hear more about how people would suggest generating a product to sell.

How much did it cost
how long did it take
where did you get some ideas
etc.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: stashing_it on May 07, 2017, 08:42:08 PM
Question for those who are selling on Amazon,  how is this company making any money ?

https://www.amazon.com/Beezix-Inc/e/B003U4C3PI/ref=dp_byline_cont_book_1# (https://www.amazon.com/Beezix-Inc/e/B003U4C3PI/ref=dp_byline_cont_book_1#)

They appear to be selling laminated study guides for $3 - $5 with FBA

but when I use the FBA calculator Amazon is charging $ 5 in fees on things less than $ 5,

https://sellercentral.amazon.com/hz/fba/profitabilitycalculator/index?lang=en_US (https://sellercentral.amazon.com/hz/fba/profitabilitycalculator/index?lang=en_US)

and that doesn't even count the cost to produce the item.   Obviously that company isn't losing money on every sale ( I would think they would have given up before having such a wide product line ).   What am I missing ?
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: CargoBiker on May 07, 2017, 11:54:14 PM
I am very interested in this.

For those of you who have started selling on Amazon, can you tell me what types of start up costs you paid and approximately how much? How much does your product cost to manufacture and how much does it sell for?  I've started listening to the Jungle Scout podcast/videos (thank you Brandon FI and FarmerAl ) and he makes it sound pretty inexpensive...but the $17K from the original poster is making me wonder.

100% depends on the product.

I shoot for products with an ROI of 100%.  So... buy a product with COGS of ~$5, and sell for around $20 on Amazon. Which, after commission fees, and some ppc costs, will net me around $10.

Some factories have high MOQs, which when compared to a high-ish product cost, is why the OP had high startup costs.


I've started products with a few hundred bucks.

I've started some with a few thousand.

My next product launch is going to be ~$20k to get started... which I like, because it'll keep some competitors away.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: CargoBiker on May 07, 2017, 11:58:45 PM
Question for those who are selling on Amazon,  how is this company making any money ?

https://www.amazon.com/Beezix-Inc/e/B003U4C3PI/ref=dp_byline_cont_book_1# (https://www.amazon.com/Beezix-Inc/e/B003U4C3PI/ref=dp_byline_cont_book_1#)

They appear to be selling laminated study guides for $3 - $5 with FBA

but when I use the FBA calculator Amazon is charging $ 5 in fees on things less than $ 5,

https://sellercentral.amazon.com/hz/fba/profitabilitycalculator/index?lang=en_US (https://sellercentral.amazon.com/hz/fba/profitabilitycalculator/index?lang=en_US)

and that doesn't even count the cost to produce the item.   Obviously that company isn't losing money on every sale ( I would think they would have given up before having such a wide product line ).   What am I missing ?

Those aren't FBA listings. 

See this by the Add to Cart button:   "Ships from and sold by Amazon.com."

This is a company that is wholesaling this product to Amazon, and Amazon is then selling it themselves.


Regarding low cost products on Amazon... sometimes, they aren't making money, but have a really low price to increase sales, and to thereby improve search rank.  When I put a new product up, I'll generally have the price lower than normal, and will slowly raise it up as my search rank improves.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Wads on May 08, 2017, 05:22:14 PM
For those of you who have started selling on Amazon, can you tell me what types of start up costs you paid and approximately how much? How much does your product cost to manufacture and how much does it sell for?  I've started listening to the Jungle Scout podcast/videos (thank you Brandon FI and FarmerAl ) and he makes it sound pretty inexpensive...but the $17K from the original poster is making me wonder.

Startup cost - Just below 5K

Product Cost- $2.99 ($4.39 Landed)

Profit Per Unit
- $5.24...Depending on the month, I'll sell anywhere from 500-850 units

If you are worried about the sourcing in China or other countries, you can always use a service like Guided Imports which handles everything for you. Of course, that comes with a cost but I highly recommend their services. I used them when I made a supplier change and also to do my pre-shipment inspections. With that said, I didn't use them in the beginning and you don't have to either.

Side Note-
I started doing this after hearing about it on multiple podcast. I went through with it only because I didn't believe it could be so simple and also because I wasn't afraid of losing 5K due to my mustachian habits. At this point, I'm fortunate to live off the profits from this side hustle and invest 100% of my 9-5 money significantly reducing my FIRE date. If your on the fence, just do it!
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: gisk on May 11, 2017, 12:11:17 PM
This is fascinating to me. Amazon is really changing the way supply chains work but there is so much to be gleaned around the edges.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: better late on May 11, 2017, 09:08:00 PM
Thanks for the information re: start up costs CargoBiker and BrandonFI.  I am doing my research now and am trying to adopt the "just do it" mindset. 
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: CargoBiker on May 12, 2017, 06:26:34 AM
Thanks for the information re: start up costs CargoBiker and BrandonFI.  I am doing my research now and am trying to adopt the "just do it" mindset.

Feel free to post in the thread if you hit a roadblock. Or PM me if you want me to check out a product.

I used to be a school teacher, and I like to help people succeed.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Lis on May 12, 2017, 02:35:43 PM
Want to follow along. I sold some used books (of my own) last year, and it was a nice, profitable way to get more shelf space. I picked up a thing of used books from someone and was ready to send in another shipment in before I got sick last winter, and I haven't done anything with them since.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: tj on May 15, 2017, 09:04:50 PM
I've sold unwanted music CD's on Aamzon for nearly 10 years but I received this emial recently:


ello,

Please read this email carefully. The listing information described below may affect your ability to sell certain products on Amazon.com.

As part of our ongoing efforts to provide a great customer experience, we are implementing additional selling qualifications for certain popular products in the Music category.

What does this mean for me?

Based on various performance metrics, effective immediately you will no longer be able to sell certain popular products in the Music category and your listings for these products have been removed.

Why am I receiving this message?

You are receiving this message because you have sold popular music products in the past.

How do I seek approval to sell these products?

We are currently not accepting applications to sell these products.

Can I still use FBA?

Effective immediately, only sellers approved to sell certain popular music products may send shipments of these products to fulfillment centers. You may continue to use FBA for other products you sell.

How will this affect my existing FBA inventory?

If you have remaining inventory of the affected products in Amazon fulfillment centers you will need to create a Removal Order for return or disposal of your remaining FBA inventory.

We appreciate your cooperation in this important matter, and thank you for selling on Amazon.

Sincerely,

Seller Performance Team
Amazon.com
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: better late on May 16, 2017, 10:32:15 PM
I've sold unwanted music CD's on Aamzon for nearly 10 years but I received this emial recently:


ello,

Please read this email carefully. The listing information described below may affect your ability to sell certain products on Amazon.com.

As part of our ongoing efforts to provide a great customer experience, we are implementing additional selling qualifications for certain popular products in the Music category.

What does this mean for me?

Based on various performance metrics, effective immediately you will no longer be able to sell certain popular products in the Music category and your listings for these products have been removed.

Why am I receiving this message?

You are receiving this message because you have sold popular music products in the past.

How do I seek approval to sell these products?

We are currently not accepting applications to sell these products.

Can I still use FBA?

Effective immediately, only sellers approved to sell certain popular music products may send shipments of these products to fulfillment centers. You may continue to use FBA for other products you sell.

How will this affect my existing FBA inventory?

If you have remaining inventory of the affected products in Amazon fulfillment centers you will need to create a Removal Order for return or disposal of your remaining FBA inventory.

We appreciate your cooperation in this important matter, and thank you for selling on Amazon.

Sincerely,

Seller Performance Team
Amazon.com



whoa. Talk about pulling the rug out. I'm sorry. that sucks.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Lis on May 17, 2017, 07:50:11 AM
Ugh yeah that really does suck. I'm part of a Facebook FBA group and lots have been complaining about this. I think it's gotten way more popular the past year or so, which means they must be getting a lot more crap (actual, not-sellable crap). Are they at least going to cover the removal fees or is that up to you as well?
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: SteadyStacker on May 22, 2017, 11:16:05 AM
Thanks everybody for the very useful tips & resources.

I notice many people are selling their own personally made products, or foreign sourced private label products.

Is anybody still making money by simply going to a local store clearance & selling those clearance items via FBA?
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: 10dollarsatatime on May 22, 2017, 04:05:14 PM
Thanks everybody for the very useful tips & resources.

I notice many people are selling their own personally made products, or foreign sourced private label products.

Is anybody still making money by simply going to a local store clearance & selling those clearance items via FBA?

This is my bag.  I may attempt to go wholesale at some point this year but for now, I hit the clearance aisles.  It's hit and miss.  Some stores have better clearance than others.  But the majority of my inventory comes from places like Walmart and Target.  Every once in a while I hit the jackpot.  Last spring it was a Walmart clearing out ALL of their WWE toys for $1.  Made around $7000 profit off that one.  Picked up 120 or so skirts for those stupid Elf on a Shelf dolls for 15 cents a piece.  Sold them all in less than a month for around $13.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: SteadyStacker on May 22, 2017, 05:31:49 PM
Thanks everybody for the very useful tips & resources.

I notice many people are selling their own personally made products, or foreign sourced private label products.

Is anybody still making money by simply going to a local store clearance & selling those clearance items via FBA?

This is my bag.  I may attempt to go wholesale at some point this year but for now, I hit the clearance aisles.  It's hit and miss.  Some stores have better clearance than others.  But the majority of my inventory comes from places like Walmart and Target.  Every once in a while I hit the jackpot.  Last spring it was a Walmart clearing out ALL of their WWE toys for $1.  Made around $7000 profit off that one.  Picked up 120 or so skirts for those stupid Elf on a Shelf dolls for 15 cents a piece.  Sold them all in less than a month for around $13.

Wow that's amazing. Congrats on your successes.  And thanks for sharing all the details.  I listened to the Smart Passive Income podcast #099 mentioned earlier in the thread, which is what we're discussing. But the podcast is 2.5yr old so I wasn't sure if anything major has changed since then. 

Just two more questions - are you using an app to calculate which items would be a profitable purchase? Or are you doing the math manually in your head?  I found the app mentioned in the podcast which scans barcodes and tells you if the item would be profitable. But the reviews on the app were terrible. Not sure if the Amazon Seller app does the same thing because i haven't made an acct yet. Second, are there any issues associated with being a new seller? Are people weary of buying your items, or does that not matter much?

 Thanks again!  I might just give this a try.

Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: 10dollarsatatime on May 22, 2017, 06:52:01 PM
I have the profit bandit app, scoutify (because it comes free with the associated listing program), and the amazon seller app.  I mostly use the amazon app lately because I can be sure the information is accurate, and it's been much improved since the podcast.  Only issue is that it's a pain to use a barcode scanner with, but my cell phone camera works nearly as fast.

I have a couple of extra phones, scanners, and a freedompop hotspot for when my brothers are bored and want to go scanning with me.  I run those on profit bandit, but run any finds through the seller app to make sure I'm good to sell them and the numbers are accurate.

As for being a new seller, your biggest issue is that you're going to be gated in a lot of categories.  Health and Beauty, Grocery, and a bunch of others.  I was lucky in that I opened my account years and years ago.  Even though I didn't sell much until a couple of years ago, I was still grandfathered in to a lot of categories and brands that now require applications to sell in.  The lack of feedback didn't seem to slow things down for me too much in the beginning.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: SteadyStacker on May 23, 2017, 07:09:34 AM
I have the profit bandit app, scoutify (because it comes free with the associated listing program), and the amazon seller app.  I mostly use the amazon app lately because I can be sure the information is accurate, and it's been much improved since the podcast.  Only issue is that it's a pain to use a barcode scanner with, but my cell phone camera works nearly as fast.

I have a couple of extra phones, scanners, and a freedompop hotspot for when my brothers are bored and want to go scanning with me.  I run those on profit bandit, but run any finds through the seller app to make sure I'm good to sell them and the numbers are accurate.

As for being a new seller, your biggest issue is that you're going to be gated in a lot of categories.  Health and Beauty, Grocery, and a bunch of others.  I was lucky in that I opened my account years and years ago.  Even though I didn't sell much until a couple of years ago, I was still grandfathered in to a lot of categories and brands that now require applications to sell in.  The lack of feedback didn't seem to slow things down for me too much in the beginning.

I opened a seller account yesterday. How would I know which categories require an application to sell in? I've looked around the seller app and there's no mention of restrictions. Obviously don't want to start buying things I can't resell.  Thanks again for your help.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Cwadda on May 23, 2017, 08:00:05 AM
Thanks everybody for the very useful tips & resources.

I notice many people are selling their own personally made products, or foreign sourced private label products.

Is anybody still making money by simply going to a local store clearance & selling those clearance items via FBA?

This is my bag.  I may attempt to go wholesale at some point this year but for now, I hit the clearance aisles.  It's hit and miss.  Some stores have better clearance than others.  But the majority of my inventory comes from places like Walmart and Target.  Every once in a while I hit the jackpot.  Last spring it was a Walmart clearing out ALL of their WWE toys for $1.  Made around $7000 profit off that one.  Picked up 120 or so skirts for those stupid Elf on a Shelf dolls for 15 cents a piece.  Sold them all in less than a month for around $13.

This is very intriguing to me because I live close to about every major retail store you can imagine. How do you go about sourcing these clearance deals? Do you get in touch with the store managers? How do you know when to show up and look for products to flip?
Do you just check certain stores i.e. Walmart and Target? Could you also try Big Lots and home goods stores like Home Depot & Lowes?
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: SteadyStacker on May 23, 2017, 09:59:21 AM
Update - I answered my own question on FBA product restrictions. Search FBA product restrictions and you'll find an official Amazon restrictions page with details. I'll be reading through before i go shopping.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on May 23, 2017, 10:33:52 AM
I started FBA a few months ago after running into a guy at DisneyWorld who started doing it a year or two ago. He told me I could make $100k the first year easy if I put in the work. I was intrigued so I thought i'd check it out.

He does retail/online arbitrage. You'll see FBA sellers call it RA and OA. There is also wholesale and private label (PL).

Retail Arbitrage: Finding stuff locally that selling for much cheaper than it is on Amazon
Online Arbitrage: Finding stuff online at other websites that is selling for much cheaper than it is on Amazon
Wholesale: Finding wholesale distributors or manufacturers that will sell you product at wholesale prices and you sell it retail price on Amazon
Private Label: Creating your own products either in the US or Asia and selling them on Amazon

The guy I met told me to spend $350 on thesellingfamily.com. Being a self-taught trader I decided I could probably get the same info for free or much cheaper by reading books and blogs. From what I've seen and heard from them though, their advice appears to be sound and they look like good people. I'm just cheap when it comes to paying for tuition. I did buy a few $10 Chris Green courses on Udemy. Chris is a good guy and has a lot of ideas. He pioneered RA for sure, and makes a few seller tools like ScanPower.

I've made plenty of mistakes along the way. The biggest ones:

1) Buying product in brands that I was restricted from selling. I didn't check on the Amazon Seller app first before buying. These are now worthless and you either have to return it or sell it on eBay. Most of the big name brands are restricted and you gotta pay $1-3k to sell them (Little Tikes, Mattell, Lego, Nerf, Hasbro, WWE, Star Wars, Beats, Nike, Asics, Apple, etc...)
2) Not checking fees on the product before buying. Amazon FBA basically takes 1/3 of the price for their fees. So if it sells for $30, Amazon takes $10. Subtract what the item cost you and that's what you have left. So you really want to find the item for $10-15 so you can make $5-10 on it after fees.
3) Buying products because they are cheap compared to Amazon, but not checking the sales rank history first. It doesn't matter how cheap you got it for, if it doesn't have a good sales rank it'll never sell.
4) Buying products that Amazon considers hazmat and won't let you sell FBA. Basically if it's got chemicals in it or it's an item with batteries, you better make sure you can sell it FBA before buying it. You'd be surprised what products Amazon considers 'dangerous.'
5) Not checking the sales price history of the item. Say I find an item for $10 and it's selling for $30 on Amazon. I think great and I buy it. But then once I list it I realize that it only temporarily listed at that price and now other sellers have caught on and some idiot is trying to drive the price down. Or maybe Amazon was a seller and was temporarily out of stock. Once Amazon gets the product in stock the price plummets down to $12.99. Now I'm going to lose money after fees, and hoping that Amazon goes out of stock is useless.

You'll have to go into this with the mentality that it's a real business. It's going to take time, effort and $$$ to learn everything and make a bunch of mistakes. But the potential is there and you can make this whatever you want. You can sell used books on Amazon and start off with literally $100. Find books for free locally or from thrift stores or library sales. You can buy cheap products on clearance and start off with little money.

Once you figure out how this works, you can work as little or as much as you want. After the first several months to a year, you can choose to only work during good seasons (like 4th quarter or textbook season). You can get a virtual assistant to do online sourcing for you. You can hire a prep center to receive all the items you order online, prep them and send them in to Amazon. You can buy a repricer to automatically reprice your items based on a certain criteria. You can outsource a lot in this so that your effort is minimal for the amount of $$$ you can make.

After selling for 2 months, I've bought around $4k worth of product, sold around $2k at list price, and make about $1k in profit. I'm now using the money I get from Amazon to source more product, instead of putting my own money in. Maybe in the 4th quarter I'll invest in additional inventory, we'll see. I hear 4th quarter is insane.

I have a full time job, a wife, 2 boys and another on the way. So I only source/prep during lunch or evenings after boys go to bed. I use an online scanning tool that goes through other websites looking for deals. So I'm not browsing around for hours, I just see the list of items that already meet my pre-set criteria. Every week I get better at going straight to the spots in stores that have potential items. Every week I'm getting faster at spotting good items to scan. Eventually you can walk through the aisles and not waste much time. You know exactly what you are looking for so if they don't have anything, you leave and go on to the next store. After selling 100+ different products, I'm now seeing the ones that sold well and so all I have to do is order more once the inventory levels get low enough. This only takes a few minutes of my time. Each week as Amazon sees that I'm a good seller, they give me permission to sell products and categories that I was previously prevented from selling. This opens up new opportunities.

It's my hope to get to a point where I have at least 30+ replenish-able products. Meaning these are products that sell well, and I can buy them at a set price online or in a store on a regular basis. There are plenty of these types of products on Amazon that sell for much higher than in the store, you just have to spend the time looking. Once I have enough of those, then I can count on those for regular income and spend my free time looking for one-time deals/clearance/liquidation, etc.

Once I've made enough profit I plan to spend some money getting ungated in the premium brands. I see so many deals that I can't take advantage of because it's a restricted brand. The restricted brands have much less competition, so you don't have to worry as much about the price tanking on you from additional sellers jumping on the listing.

There is a huge market out there of people selling to Amazon FBA sellers. Books, eBooks, online courses, mentoring, blogs, podcasts, facebook groups etc. There is no shortage of information. Just search for Amazon FBA in Google, Amazon, Facebook or a podcast app and you'll fine plenty. The software tools available to help sellers are night and day compared to 5 years ago.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on May 23, 2017, 10:47:01 AM
This is very intriguing to me because I live close to about every major retail store you can imagine. How do you go about sourcing these clearance deals? Do you get in touch with the store managers? How do you know when to show up and look for products to flip?
Do you just check certain stores i.e. Walmart and Target? Could you also try Big Lots and home goods stores like Home Depot & Lowes?

You can do all those things you listed, at all the stores you just listed. Every store has a clearance section that you can look at first. Some stores put the clearance items next to the regular items so you have to go down every aisle looking at the tags.

The best way to get started is to frequently stop by the stores until you get a feel for when they are going to mark down products. You start seeing patterns after time of what sells, price changes, product changes, etc.

I haven't done it yet but many people find great success getting to know store managers and building a relationship with them. Be up-front, some will be fine with it some won't. If you can get in good with them they can start calling you to let you know when they have stuff you may be interested in. They are interested in clearing out inventory that is not selling on their shelf. It may not sell locally but that doesn't mean it has no value online at Amazon.

I just found a pet product for $5 yesterday at Big Lots. It retails and sells (well) for $25 on Amazon. I bought most of what they had but after getting home and doing more research, I'm going back during lunch today to buy it all. And I'll try going to other Big Lots in my area to see if they have more.

Jessica at thesellingfamily.com talks about finding a flavor of some juice powder that was no longer being manufactured, selling in Big Lots. They could buy it for a few bucks and it was selling for like $30+ on Amazon because there were still plenty of people nationwide who liked that flavor. They went to every Big Lots in California and Nevada and cleaned them out. I believe they made $30-40k on that one product alone. This is rare but it is possible if you stop in regularly, scan lots of stuff, and know what to look for.

I found a specific color of dog leash selling for $25 on Amazon and I could buy it online from another website for $8. You couldn't find this color anywhere else and there were only a few left on Amazon. I bought all 46 leashes the other site had and they sell 2-3 per week on Amazon. I'm the only one on the listing so all sales go to me. Once I get down to 10 or so leashes I may increase the price to $30 or $40 and see if they continue to sell. It's nice to have pricing power on your side.

Making $18-27/week profit on dog leashes doesn't sound like much, but add this to a bunch of other products you do the same thing with and it adds up. During 4th quarter maybe you work your tail off and make $40k profit in a few months. You keep selling regular items the rest of the year and make $60-100k for the year. It's certainly possible. You can make this into whatever you want.

Wholesalers can go through millions of dollars of product in a year on Amazon. They may only make 10-30% profit margin on that volume but that's still a lot of money. This can be a side gig or a legitimate business with employees and a warehouse all centered around selling on Amazon.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on May 23, 2017, 11:20:58 AM
Here's an example of Online Arbitrage:

Insignia Plug-In Bluetooth Speaker
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/insignia-plug-in-bluetooth-speaker-white/8417024.p?skuId=8417024
Sells for $14.99 + tax free shipping

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00WH893JM/
Sells for $34.82 Amazon FBA

Fees: $5.77
Net Profit: $12.81
Profit Margin: 79%

There are 8 other FBA sellers on this item and it sells a few per week so I wouldn't buy more than a few.

Of course there will be shipping charges to send this to Amazon, however if you live close to a fulfillment center it won't be too much. Amazon has the best shipping rates in the world. I'm 100 miles from a fulfillment center and to ship a 18" cubed box weighing 25 lbs UPS might cost me $8. Retail that might cost you $30-$40.

I typically only look for items selling for over $15 on Amazon, and I want to make at least $5 profit on each item to make it worth my time. I'll make an exception to this if it is an item I can sell a lot of, like a household good that sells all day long and I can buy as much of it as I want.

The best item is one that is small, light, expensive with a good sales rank. It'll have the lowest FBA fees and will give the best ROI.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Cwadda on May 23, 2017, 12:09:55 PM
Quote
You can do all those things you listed, at all the stores you just listed. Every store has a clearance section that you can look at first. Some stores put the clearance items next to the regular items so you have to go down every aisle looking at the tags.

*snipped*

Hey hodedofome, thanks for the wealth of information! I have one more question - you mention sales rank quite a bit. I was wondering what sales rank numbers you look for in particular? Are we talking like in the top 10,000? What's your baseline?
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on May 23, 2017, 01:29:08 PM
Hey hodedofome, thanks for the wealth of information! I have one more question - you mention sales rank quite a bit. I was wondering what sales rank numbers you look for in particular? Are we talking like in the top 10,000? What's your baseline?

https://sellics.com/blog-amazon-sales-rank
https://thesellingfamily.com/how-much-inventory-buy-one-time-amazon-business

Here's a calculator where you put in the sales rank in a particular category and it'll tell you roughly how many sales the product has per month. https://www.junglescout.com/estimator/?utm_source=affiliate&utm_medium=723

Here's a chart showing what the top 1% of each category's seller rank is https://sourcingsimplifiers.com/bsr-chart/

This isn't definitive but is a good place to start to keep you from getting yourself into trouble. Try to find items at the following ranks or below when starting out:

Baby: 25k
Toys and Games: 100k
Home and Kitchen: 150k
Sports and Outdoors: 125k
Video Games: 10k
Clothes: 60k
Shoes: 15k
Health and Beauty: 99k
Grocery: 60k

I use the Keepa Google Chrome extension to show me the ranking, price history and sales history of an item. When you are looking at an item on Amazon, it'll put this chart below the item description and it's super handy. It'll take some time to learn how to properly read it but it can be done. https://keepa.com/#!addon

I also use camelcamelcamel for the same info but presented a little differently. https://camelcamelcamel.com/

The FBA fees/profitability calculator is essential (also found in the seller app): https://sellercentral.amazon.com/hz/fba/profitabilitycalculator/index?lang=en_US

Using the add a new product tool on Amazon's seller page is essential for finding out if you are restricted from selling it or if there's hazmat concerns https://sellercentral.amazon.com/productsearch?ref_=GS_SWIPE_add_product

Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: SteadyStacker on May 23, 2017, 03:04:36 PM
Hey hodedofome, thanks for the wealth of information! I have one more question - you mention sales rank quite a bit. I was wondering what sales rank numbers you look for in particular? Are we talking like in the top 10,000? What's your baseline?

https://sellics.com/blog-amazon-sales-rank
https://thesellingfamily.com/how-much-inventory-buy-one-time-amazon-business

Here's a calculator where you put in the sales rank in a particular category and it'll tell you roughly how many sales the product has per month. https://www.junglescout.com/estimator/?utm_source=affiliate&utm_medium=723

Here's a chart showing what the top 1% of each category's seller rank is https://sourcingsimplifiers.com/bsr-chart/

This isn't definitive but is a good place to start to keep you from getting yourself into trouble. Try to find items at the following ranks or below when starting out:

Baby: 25k
Toys and Games: 100k
Home and Kitchen: 150k
Sports and Outdoors: 125k
Video Games: 10k
Clothes: 60k
Shoes: 15k
Health and Beauty: 99k
Grocery: 60k

I use the Keepa Google Chrome extension to show me the ranking, price history and sales history of an item. When you are looking at an item on Amazon, it'll put this chart below the item description and it's super handy. It'll take some time to learn how to properly read it but it can be done. https://keepa.com/#!addon

I also use camelcamelcamel for the same info but presented a little differently. https://camelcamelcamel.com/

The FBA fees/profitability calculator is essential (also found in the seller app): https://sellercentral.amazon.com/hz/fba/profitabilitycalculator/index?lang=en_US

Using the add a new product tool on Amazon's seller page is essential for finding out if you are restricted from selling it or if there's hazmat concerns https://sellercentral.amazon.com/productsearch?ref_=GS_SWIPE_add_product

You are legendary for providing all this info, I really appreciate it. I hope karma is good to you.

If youu dont mind, could you briefly talk about labeling and packaging? Does buying all the boxes & labels eat into margins much? Do you have to print the labels on peel & stick, or do you just tape it to the product & package?

Thanks again
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on May 23, 2017, 03:06:27 PM
One tip to lower your cost (for a higher ROI) for RA/OA is to stack coupons and discounts. So the item say at Kohl's is normally $19.95. It sells on Amazon for $30, not enough to really make any money on it after fees.

You go to cardbear.com and buy a gift card at an 11.2% discount today. https://www.cardbear.com/gift-card-discount/128/Kohl%27s

Then you use the WikiBuy Google Chrome extension with eBates and it'll automatically put in the best coupon codes if any are available. From eBates there's 15% off $100 sitewide https://www.ebates.com/kohls.com?query=kohl&position=1&type=suggest&store=7206 You'll also get 6% cash back for Kohl's today on eBates.

Then you use Kohl's cash (you can earn $10 for every $50 you spend, essentially saving you an additional 20%).

When you buy the gift card from cardbear, you use a rewards credit card for another 1-2%.

So 11.2% + 6% + 20% + 1% is a total of 38.2% discount, saving you $7.62 and bringing your cost down to $12.33. Suddenly that $20 item with no ROI becomes a pretty decent buy with probably a 75% ROI.

These are things the general public won't ever do so you won't have as much competition most likely. They'll pass right over it thinking there's no money to be made.

Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on May 23, 2017, 03:23:32 PM
You are legendary for providing all this info, I really appreciate it. I hope karma is good to you.

If youu dont mind, could you briefly talk about labeling and packaging? Does buying all the boxes & labels eat into margins much? Do you have to print the labels on peel & stick, or do you just tape it to the product & package?

Thanks again

Since 3/21 I've spent $133 on shipping supplies. I bought boxes, tape, packing paper, and polybags. I already had Avery labels around the house.

I haven't bought boxes, packing paper or tape in 1 month. I've been doing enough online arbitrage that I just re-use the box and airbags that the items come with.

Starting out I had Amazon label any item that needed to be labeled ($0.20 each). Since I try to find higher priced items $0.20 doesn't hurt too bad. I'm doing more of it now, it's just peel and stick for me now. Once I ramp this up I'll buy a thermal label printer and do it better. It eats into your ROI at first, but then you start getting more efficient with everything. Go into this expecting the first few months you'll be happy to break-even after expenses.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on May 23, 2017, 03:33:08 PM
I've been making my own list of restricted brands and what it takes to sell them, here's what I got so far. When is says invoice, you need to provide proof of an invoice where you purchased from an authorized distributor or the manufacturer (retail stores don't count). Authorization means you obtained a letter of authorization to resell the product from the manufacturer:

Little Tikes - $2,500 fee + 1 invoice with 10 or more items
Child and Infant Products - need 1 invoice with at least 10 items on it
Infant Toys - $2,500 fee
Toy Building Block Products - 1 purchase invoice with at least 10 items on it plus children's product certificate
Baby Activity Gear - $2,500 fee
Baby Feeding - $2,500 fee
Bleacher Creatures - need 1 invoice + authorization from Bleacher Creatures
Learning Toy Products - $2,500
Baby Stroller and Carrier - $2,500
Lego - $1,000 fee + invoice + Lego authorization
Marvel - $2,500 fee? (Marvel Toys and Games just needs invoice + authorization)
Mattell - $1,000 fee + invoice + Mattell authorization
Nike - $1,500 fee + invoice + Nike authorization
Champion - Invoice + Champion authorization
Under Armour - $1,000 fee + invoice + Under Armour authorization
Keen - Invoice + Keen authorization
Funko Pop - Invoice + Funko authorization + $1,000
Paw Patrol - Invoice + $2,500
DC Toys - Invoice + $2,500
New Balance - 1 Invoice + New Balance authorization
Asics - 1 Invoice + Asics authorization + $1,500
Brooks - 1 Invoice + Brooks authorization
Dietary supplements - $3,000 fee
Sports Nutrition - $3,000 fee
WWE - $1,000 fee + invoice + Mattell authorization
Hasbro - Invoice + Hasbro authorization + $1,000
Star Wars - Invoice + Star Wars authorization + $1,500
Sony - Invoice + Sony authorization + $1,000
Disney - Invoice + Disney authorization + $1,000
Nerf - Invoice + Nerf authorization + $1,000
Rubie's - Invoice + Authorization
Topicals - $3,000 fee
Feminine Hygiene - $3,000 fee
Shopkins - Invoice + authorization + $1,000
Beats - $1,000 + invoice + authorization
Mophie - $1,000 + Invoice + authorization
Native Union - Invoice + authorization
Otterbox - $1,000 + Invoice + authorization
Makita - $1,000 + Invoice + authorization
Dewalt - $1,000 + invoice + authorization
Milwaukee - NONE
Bosch - None as long as it's not automotive
Chicago Pneumatic - NONE
RIDGID - NONE
Hitachi - NONE for tools, need approval for the health products though
3M - Invoice + 3M authorization
Takara - $1,000 + invoice + authorization
Bandai - $1,000 + invoice + authorization
Hamilton Beach - Invoice + authorization
Black n Decker - Invoice + authorization
Apple - $1,000 + invoice + authorization
Samsung - Invoice
Keurig - $1,000 + invoice + authorization
SharkNinja - Invoice + authorization
Oxo - Invoice + $1,000 + authorization
Cuisinart - Invoice + authorization
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: SteadyStacker on May 23, 2017, 06:45:38 PM


Since 3/21 I've spent $133 on shipping supplies. I bought boxes, tape, packing paper, and polybags. I already had Avery labels around the house.

I haven't bought boxes, packing paper or tape in 1 month. I've been doing enough online arbitrage that I just re-use the box and airbags that the items come with.

Starting out I had Amazon label any item that needed to be labeled ($0.20 each). Since I try to find higher priced items $0.20 doesn't hurt too bad. I'm doing more of it now, it's just peel and stick for me now. Once I ramp this up I'll buy a thermal label printer and do it better. It eats into your ROI at first, but then you start getting more efficient with everything. Go into this expecting the first few months you'll be happy to break-even after expenses.

Thanks,  I watched maybe 5 instructional videos so far. Maybe its me and i need to watch more, but the packaging & labeling process seems a bit confusing & complex. I think i need to spend more time reviewing it. I have a feeling it'll get easier eventually.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on May 23, 2017, 07:05:33 PM
If you are buying products with UPC barcodes on them, usually you don't have to label anything. When you sign up for an account, you add the products you plan to sell. Then you choose which ones you want to send in. Amazon will tell you if they need labels, and if you want to do it or want them to do it for a fee. They will also tell you if it needs to be bubble-wrapped. They'll tell you where to send the products, and hopefully they are all going to 1 place. Hopefully you can fit it all in 1 box and just make sure the products can't move around too much. After doing a few you'll get the hang of it.

Expect to make some mistakes in the beginning. It's all part of the process and there's no way to really feel comfortable until you done it several times in real life.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: CargoBiker on May 23, 2017, 08:21:46 PM
With all the experience you have with Amazon @hodedofome, you really should consider creating your own brand of products.

Better margins, less time commitment.

There's work upfront to get the product going, but once it's going... it's hands off.


Going around to stores sounds like a huge pain.   I know a guy who does 3-5mil in RA, he has a warehouse and manages a team of buyers.  But even then, you got overhead and have to manage employees. yuck.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: CareCPA on May 24, 2017, 05:43:30 AM
This thread makes me want to dabble in RA/OA.
I'm not looking to make huge money, but I have some ecommerce clients, and it would be nice to be more familiar with how the whole Amazon process and reporting fits together.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: 10dollarsatatime on May 24, 2017, 07:23:21 AM
It's certainly been covered by hodedofome thoroughly. :)

I started out just using whatever boxes I could scrounge.  Amazon doesn't care as long as they're not liquor boxes.   Same thing for packing material.  I buy rolls of brown paper now, but still reuse all the bubble wrap and packing bubbles I come across.  I get my boxes from uhaul.

I have always labeled my own things.  Started out with an old laser printer I got for $10 on public surplus.  As soon as I proved to myself that this was a thing I was going to keep doing, I upgraded to a dymo, which is much easier to work into the process.

Last year I started using Inventory Lab.  At this point, I don't think I'd do FBA without a listing program.  It makes the flow much easier/faster and you build packing lists for your boxes as you go.  There are others out there.  But I haven't looked into them much because Inventory Lab does everything I need.

I'd have to say my biggest mistake is not taking care of accounting as things happen.  Saving it up and doing it in a chunk at the year's end was bad.  Month's end is bad if I've been pushing hard that month.  Believe me when I say sit down, scan your receipts, and update your books at least once a week.  It will make doing your taxes much easier.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on May 24, 2017, 07:57:36 AM
This thread makes me want to dabble in RA/OA.
I'm not looking to make huge money, but I have some ecommerce clients, and it would be nice to be more familiar with how the whole Amazon process and reporting fits together.

It's certainly helped me out with my clients. It won't take much $$$ to at least figure out the A, B and C's of working with Amazon. I sell accounting and ERP systems for my day job. Many of them sell mail order, website, eBay, Amazon, etc. I'm able to walk into a prospect's office and talk intelligently about their Amazon business. Most of them don't even realize there's a Brand Registry Program that helps them control their product being sold on Amazon. Even if you can't answer their questions yourself, if you can point them to the right people and companies that can help implement their goals they will look to you as a trusted adviser. There's plenty of ex-Amazon employees doing consulting out there to help people sell and control their brand on Amazon.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on May 24, 2017, 08:01:54 AM
With all the experience you have with Amazon @hodedofome, you really should consider creating your own brand of products.

Better margins, less time commitment.

There's work upfront to get the product going, but once it's going... it's hands off.


Going around to stores sounds like a huge pain.   I know a guy who does 3-5mil in RA, he has a warehouse and manages a team of buyers.  But even then, you got overhead and have to manage employees. yuck.

PL may happen for me one day but not right now. Each area (RA, OA, Wholesale, PL) fits a certain personality and desire. Because I'm a trader on the side, arbitrage opportunities were a natural fit and a good place to start. We'll see how long that lasts.

I can tell you at this point I have no desire to have employees or overhead. Maybe that changes in the future but for now it's not me. I think you can do pretty well as a 1 person shop in RA/OA. There's a guy in Boston who started last year and did $350k in sales his first year by himself. He's a CFO with a day job so he outsourced everything except the buying. I don't know how much profit he made but that's still a good bit of business.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: SteadyStacker on May 24, 2017, 09:12:41 AM
Newbie question...Obviously you need to place a shipping label outside your package. But do you also need to label the items inside? I know it's not a simple yes/no.

Assuming I'm shipping a few individual items in one box. Do we need some sort of label on the items inside the package? Or is this where you can send them without a label & pay amazon to label them once they arrive?

Or can you simply send them without a label and go to seller central to input those shipping details so they don't have to open the box?

This is the shipping stuff that is confusing the hell out of me.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Lis on May 24, 2017, 09:25:05 AM
Newbie question...Obviously you need to place a shipping label outside your package. But do you also need to label the items inside? I know it's not a simple yes/no.

Assuming I'm shipping a few individual items in one box. Do we need some sort of label on the items inside the package? Or is this where you can send them without a label & pay amazon to label them once they arrive?

Or can you simply send them without a label and go to seller central to input those shipping details so they don't have to open the box?

This is the shipping stuff that is confusing the hell out of me.

Shipping scared me too, but honestly it's not that scary!

Let's say you're sending in 10 individual items. When you create the listing on the seller central page, it'll prompt you to print out individual labels to stick on each item. Best practice is to cover any existing barcodes, but you can stick it anywhere.

You can also choose to send them in unlabeled and Amazon will label them for you, but it's an extra... $0.50 per item I think? Absolutely depends on your situation here... if you're doing PL and sending in hundreds/thousands of items, it might make sense. If you're reselling and looking at profits of $3-$5 each? Probably not.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: 10dollarsatatime on May 24, 2017, 09:25:43 AM
Newbie question...Obviously you need to place a shipping label outside your package. But do you also need to label the items inside? I know it's not a simple yes/no.

Assuming I'm shipping a few individual items in one box. Do we need some sort of label on the items inside the package? Or is this where you can send them without a label & pay amazon to label them once they arrive?

Or can you simply send them without a label and go to seller central to input those shipping details so they don't have to open the box?

This is the shipping stuff that is confusing the hell out of me.

It depends. 

You can co-mingle, which means any customer buying from your store can be sent an item that any co-mingling seller sent in.  You have less control over your merchandise this way.  Amazon claims they can keep track of who sent what, but there have been issues.  Maybe another seller sent in some items with damaged packaging, and your customer gets that item and isn't happy about it... something to keep in mind.

You can have Amazon label for .20/item.  Not a bad price.  You just need to make sure you keep things that could be confused for each other in separate boxes when you ship them in so they don't get mixed up at the warehouse.

Or you can just label them yourself.  This is currently the method I use.  But I hate prepping, so that may change.

When you ship, you do submit box content, so they know what is in each box when they scan the barcode on the outside.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: SteadyStacker on May 24, 2017, 09:54:27 AM
Thank you both, I haven't listed anything yet so those details definitely helped clear things up.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on May 24, 2017, 11:10:00 AM
Newbie question...Obviously you need to place a shipping label outside your package. But do you also need to label the items inside? I know it's not a simple yes/no.

Assuming I'm shipping a few individual items in one box. Do we need some sort of label on the items inside the package? Or is this where you can send them without a label & pay amazon to label them once they arrive?

Or can you simply send them without a label and go to seller central to input those shipping details so they don't have to open the box?

This is the shipping stuff that is confusing the hell out of me.

There are plenty of items that don't need a label. Really if there's a UPC barcode on the product (of with almost everything you buy should have one) it shouldn't 'need' any additional label, but sometimes Amazon requires one anyways. Sometimes I do it myself sometimes I pay them $0.20-0.50 per item to do it.

In 1 box I might have 3 nerf guns, 2 bottles of Windex, 5 sets of headphones, a board game, and 10 iPhone cases. Nothing related to each other but Amazon knows ahead of time what's in the box. When it gets there they sort it out, and label the items that need to be labeled. 
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Cwadda on May 24, 2017, 11:17:05 AM
I just configured my first FBA listing so am excited to see what happens. I'm shipping 5 items together. This product in particular had UPC codes but Amazon required their own labels anyway.

Will keep everyone posted how it goes.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Lis on May 24, 2017, 11:57:41 AM
This product in particular had UPC codes but Amazon required their own labels anyway.

If you're doing FBA, everything you send in requires a label somehow. Whether you print them off and apply them yourself, or pay to have Amazon do it, a label is being put on your product (again, if going through FBA). It corresponds with their specific database number (ASIN) and it helps them keep things organized in their warehouse. If you go to any Amazon product page and scroll down to Product Information, you'll see important information on it - the ASIN (Amazon's barcode for it), Best Seller's Rank (where it falls in specific categories - usually just the first/most broad category is the most important), and the product dimensions (helps you figure out box sizes, or how many could fit in a box you have, etc.). If you're doing OA, it's easier to find the product yourself on Amazon, then use whatever tracking systems (Keepa, camelcamelcamel, etc) with the ASIN.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: LiseE on May 24, 2017, 12:26:04 PM
Wow .. all great information .. thanks so much for sharing.  I've been immersed in learning the PL side of FBA but I've been reading more and more about how we should start out with OA/RA to learn the ropes which makes sense to me.

One thing about the Private Label model is the whole Amazon Sponsored Ads and PPC.  I'm just wondering with OA/RA .. how do people find your listings??  Do you still need to do the PPC advertising?

- Lise
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Lis on May 24, 2017, 12:44:03 PM
Wow .. all great information .. thanks so much for sharing.  I've been immersed in learning the PL side of FBA but I've been reading more and more about how we should start out with OA/RA to learn the ropes which makes sense to me.

One thing about the Private Label model is the whole Amazon Sponsored Ads and PPC.  I'm just wondering with OA/RA .. how do people find your listings??  Do you still need to do the PPC advertising?

- Lise

If you're going OA/RA, you're going to be focusing on already-popular items that don't need specific advertising from you. You're going to your local store (or their website) and taking advantage of a sale or something similar. For example, my local Target (not all Targets) was trying to get rid of a certain toy to make room for new stuff and were selling them as Buy 1, Get 2. Now this toy had been out for a while but was still popular, and people were still searching for it, my local Target had just ordered too many and were trying to get rid of them.

OA is a bit trickier, because with RA, you're only competing with whoever is local. I've yet to figure out how to do OA successfully (other than spot a random good deal here and there).
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on May 24, 2017, 02:12:37 PM
So far I've found success with searching through lesser known websites for OA. If you're just looking at Walmart and Target well everybody is looking at those too. Here's what I've learned:

1) Find popular items on temporary sale (buy one get one free, 20% off site-wide, stacking discounts, etc)
2) Look through lesser known sites that specialize in liquidations and closeouts. Most likely they have all the stock that's left by the time they get them. If you buy out everything they have, there's no more competition for that item.
3) Brands that choose not to sell their products on Amazon but don't have a habit of threatening lawsuits when other people sell their items. Not every brand wants to sell on Amazon. Some of those items can be bought at regular price and sold at a much higher price on Amazon. Thermopop meat thermometers - you used to be able to buy them direct for $25 all day long and sell them on Amazon for $50. Then the manufacturer finally got the item restricted on Amazon. But for a couple years people could make money on that.
4) An extension of #3 is finding items that are Walmart or Target exclusives (or some other store). That means Amazon is not going to sell that item which opens up the door for 3rd party sellers to do that.

Software tools that scan websites make OA much easier. But it's not what you think. It's not like thousands of people can press a button and see all the deals everyone online at once. It takes a while to scrub sites using the tools, so it's very possible you never see the deal but other people did. There's a bunch of luck involved. By the time someone else sees the deal it may be sold out or gone back up in price. It would take weeks to scrub all the available sites out there, so there's timing luck.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: RobinAZ on May 25, 2017, 04:50:04 AM
I sold on FBA two Xmas seasons ago. Made decent with no minimal effort, lol. Things have changed with the new rules and restrictions but RA is far from dead. PL definitely interests me.

I have a good job but I don't work full time, and I am ready to be working more and getting a side hustle in place again.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on May 25, 2017, 07:50:50 AM
https://www.marketplacepulse.com/articles/500000-new-sellers-joined-amazon-marketplace-already-in-2017

Since the start of the year Amazon has already had half a million new sellers join its marketplaces.

For many months now we've been detecting 100,000 new sellers join Amazon marketplaces every 30 days. Roughly a half of that goes to Amazon USA, while others spread in the smaller marketplaces.

In Amazon.com 700,000 New Sellers in a Year, Less Than 10% Are Selling Today we wrote:

"There is a lot of new sellers joining, but only a small percentage of them stay for a longer period. This is very apparent when looking at how many sellers had a sale last month, compared to 12 months ago - for Amazon.com that number is growing, but at a relatively slow pace."

By the end of the year we will have detected over a million new sellers, though few will be still actively selling.

Nonetheless it's an interesting metric to look at as it shows where the interest is highest. Because from the thousands of new sellers, some do end up becoming active sellers. Here is a breakdown of new sellers since January 1st, 2017.

Marketplace   New Sellers in 2017   % Growth
Amazon India   43,700   33.0%
Amazon France   37,600   29.7%
Amazon Japan   27,000   25.8%
Amazon Italy   33,400   25.8%
Amazon Mexico   7,100   24.9%
Amazon Canada   26,300   23.7%
Amazon USA   236,000   21.1%
Amazon UK   37,500   15.8%
Amazon China   900   13.7%
Amazon Germany   21,700   11.4%
Amazon Spain   12,700   10.9%
Amazon Brazil   250   0%
In April a marketplace was launched in Brazil, and since then Amazon Brazil has already added 250 sellers. All of them are books sellers, since Amazon in Brazil has not launched any other categories.

The last time we looked at this was in July last year, and found that Amazon Mexico is the fastest growing marketplace. It is still growing fast, because of how relatively small it is.

India is the fastest growing market, both in terms of new sellers, and considering how many of them stay active selling for a longer period. Amazon has committed to investing billions of $ into their operations in India, and since in India they only operate a marketplace the growth will continue to be so.

In the US hundreds of thousands of sellers join every couple few months, but many of them are part of scam techniques to defraud Amazon. At the current rate new seller joins Amazon US marketplace every 30 seconds, no wonder Amazon has been getting more aggressive about auto-suspending just launched sellers.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: SteadyStacker on May 26, 2017, 08:40:37 PM
Update for the curious... thought i'd catch some good memorial day sales this weekend. Spent 2.5hr at Target today scanning so many products. Wow, talk about restrictions. I only ended up with 2 board games that were on clearance, 5 items total. After shipping costs i might walk away with $25. Not great for the time i spent, but its about 20% return on investment not including the FBA membership. I also hit a wholesale liquidator yesterday with no luck at all, which was surprising. Gonna try WalMart tomorrow, hopefully have some better luck. I need a reason to stick with this.

Also been looking on all sort of websites. No luck yet in that area.

 
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on May 30, 2017, 01:06:03 PM
Update for the curious... thought i'd catch some good memorial day sales this weekend. Spent 2.5hr at Target today scanning so many products. Wow, talk about restrictions. I only ended up with 2 board games that were on clearance, 5 items total. After shipping costs i might walk away with $25. Not great for the time i spent, but its about 20% return on investment not including the FBA membership. I also hit a wholesale liquidator yesterday with no luck at all, which was surprising. Gonna try WalMart tomorrow, hopefully have some better luck. I need a reason to stick with this.

Also been looking on all sort of websites. No luck yet in that area.

You should not expect to make any money your first month or two. It'll take some time to learn what to look for. You'll also have plenty of strike-outs. You'll hit up several stores with nothing to show for it, then you walk into 1 store and spend hundreds.

Get on mailing lists for the store websites so you know in advance what's going on sale.

The more you sell, the more Amazon likes you and will allow you to get ungated in some categories. Some brands you won't get in without paying some $$$, but there's plenty out there that's profitable and will sell. You just have to keep looking.

I went into Big Lots a few weeks ago and saw some flea medication that said I was restricted. I applied for the product and was approved right away.

You can get ungated in shoes just by applying. You can do the same thing for automotive, just use your Amazon store link as your website when they ask.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: LiseE on May 31, 2017, 10:24:39 AM
what does it mean to be at a store and "scanning" products?  Is there an app?
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Cork on May 31, 2017, 10:37:50 PM
Fun thread, it's pulling me back in.  I'll throw my hat into the ring.

2015 - 11k profit from iphone sales.  Might have been the simplest method, but I found a local source of $50 iphone 4S that were gently used from a business.  I bought every one of them for 10 months and resold on amazon for $90-160 depending on condition.

No jungle scout, no research, just one great lead.  It made me believe there are always deals out there.   My advice is to find surplus and bulk liquidation monthly sales. 

what does it mean to be at a store and "scanning" products?  Is there an app?

Yep, there is an amazon seller's app on the app store.  Your phone's camera reads the barcode.

Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on June 01, 2017, 02:04:28 PM
Yesterday I dropped my first FBA shipment in the mail. I bought a bunch of books from students at $10 apiece and am going to sell them for $40 each via FBA. They're ranked in the top 15k. Curiously awaiting how the first FBA inventory will go.

Great find. Just make sure you scan the books ahead of time. Textbooks for several publishers just got restricted for New and Like-New conditions. You can only sell a lot of textbooks as Acceptable, Good or Very Good.

I bought about 100 books over the past few months with hopes that I can unload most of them during textbook season. So far I've only sold about 4 or 5. We'll see how it goes. If textbook season is as good as everyone else says it is, I might try to focus on textbooks during September/January and toys/seasonal items during Q4. The rest of the year just relax and prepare for those 3 seasons. Maybe dink around with some small buys here and there in between when I see a sale.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: SteadyStacker on June 03, 2017, 10:40:05 AM
Update for the curious... thought i'd catch some good memorial day sales this weekend. Spent 2.5hr at Target today scanning so many products. Wow, talk about restrictions. I only ended up with 2 board games that were on clearance, 5 items total. After shipping costs i might walk away with $25. Not great for the time i spent, but its about 20% return on investment not including the FBA membership. I also hit a wholesale liquidator yesterday with no luck at all, which was surprising. Gonna try WalMart tomorrow, hopefully have some better luck. I need a reason to stick with this.

Also been looking on all sort of websites. No luck yet in that area.

You should not expect to make any money your first month or two. It'll take some time to learn what to look for. You'll also have plenty of strike-outs. You'll hit up several stores with nothing to show for it, then you walk into 1 store and spend hundreds.

Get on mailing lists for the store websites so you know in advance what's going on sale.

The more you sell, the more Amazon likes you and will allow you to get ungated in some categories. Some brands you won't get in without paying some $$$, but there's plenty out there that's profitable and will sell. You just have to keep looking.

I went into Big Lots a few weeks ago and saw some flea medication that said I was restricted. I applied for the product and was approved right away.

You can get ungated in shoes just by applying. You can do the same thing for automotive, just use your Amazon store link as your website when they ask.

Thanks I appreciate the additional detail. I started adding the items to my inventory, and Amazon said i had to pay shipping from their facility to the customer, in addition to shipping to the FBA warehouse. So i returned the items, it ended up not being profitable. I thought i'd only have to pay shipping once to the warehouse.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: LurkingMustache on June 21, 2017, 10:44:24 AM
The biggest problem I have with this is that it seems really hard to get started in a couple ways:

1.  Everything on Amazon seems to be restricted now.  So, Retail/Online arbitrage to start with is severely limited unless you get unblocked in categories.
2.  There seem to be a lot of gurus that sell stuff to you so you can start.  Which makes me believe that it might be better and/or easier to achieve profit from just "teaching" how to do these things - rather than just do them.  That may just be the skeptic in me, though.
3.  Apart from the gurus, a lot of the systems you can use to help find products are paid subscriptions.  I guess if you are really dedicated to it you can dive in head first and pay for Jungle Scout and other subscriptions in order to start.  Just seems like a stretch for me to pay for stuff first.

I'm going to keep researching it, I did read that you can get unblocked from categories more easily as you start selling things -- so even selling used may be a good option to create some reviews.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Bart1ma3u5 on June 21, 2017, 03:05:48 PM
Posting to follow. I set up an account and am hoping to go look for products soon to try this out and see how it goes.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on June 22, 2017, 02:18:46 PM
The distribution facility received my shipment yesterday. It now says the product is back-ordered until June 7th. I'm assuming they're not ready in the warehouse for immediate distribution if someone were to buy them right now.

People can buy the products you have under "reserved" status, they just won't receive them right away. I've sold stuff that was backordered before, but it doesn't happen often.

Used books take especially long to get sorted out and sent to the right fulfillment center. It can take 2-3 weeks sometimes. Other items usually take up to a week.

Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on June 22, 2017, 02:27:41 PM
The biggest problem I have with this is that it seems really hard to get started in a couple ways:

1.  Everything on Amazon seems to be restricted now.  So, Retail/Online arbitrage to start with is severely limited unless you get unblocked in categories.
2.  There seem to be a lot of gurus that sell stuff to you so you can start.  Which makes me believe that it might be better and/or easier to achieve profit from just "teaching" how to do these things - rather than just do them.  That may just be the skeptic in me, though.
3.  Apart from the gurus, a lot of the systems you can use to help find products are paid subscriptions.  I guess if you are really dedicated to it you can dive in head first and pay for Jungle Scout and other subscriptions in order to start.  Just seems like a stretch for me to pay for stuff first.

I'm going to keep researching it, I did read that you can get unblocked from categories more easily as you start selling things -- so even selling used may be a good option to create some reviews.

I was lucky in that an established seller told me about FBA while I was on vacation. I got his number and was able to text him when I got frustrated.

Yes there are many gated categories, but there are many non-gated categories too. There are millions of products out there, and plenty of wide-open brands. You gotta get out there and scan every item on the shelf. It takes a long time but eventually you'll get more efficient. You'll one day be able to walk down an aisle and skip all the products you know aren't worth it, and go straight to the ones that look like they have potential and you haven't scanned before.

You'll run into the 'replenishable' products 1 by 1, and soon you'll have a whole list of items that you can buy off the shelf at retail price and sell them for a profit on Amazon. You walk into a store and it only takes a few minutes because you know exactly what you're looking for.

Or, you learn the online arbitrage tools and let that do the heavy lifting for you. Or you do both.

This business isn't for someone who wants to get rich quick without trying. But if you put in the time and try to learn something new every day (and you have some startup $$$), you can get there. I'm made many mistakes and had to unload inventory on eBay plenty of times because I bought it without realizing I was restricted. Thankfully my mistakes haven't cost me too much $$$.

I started at the end of March and just surpassed $5k in sales on Amazon for the past 30 days today (total I've sold so far is $9k). I've invested a total of $3k of my own money to start. Next stop is $10k sales in a month. I texted the guy who got me into this and he did $35k last month in sales and profit matched his IT Admin salary. Once he hits $12k/profit consistently he's quitting his job.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: LiseE on June 27, 2017, 09:04:04 AM
Quote
I started at the end of March and just surpassed $5k in sales on Amazon for the past 30 days today (total I've sold so far is $9k). I've invested a total of $3k of my own money to start. Next stop is $10k sales in a month.

Great job!  I'm suffering from analysis paralysis but I'm about to jump in .. very excited and love to hear the progress of another person who is trying this business model.  I've been researching and reading everything I can since February ... I know it's not a quick win but I'm also looking to match my current salary before I can pull the plug .. whoo hoo .. here we go!

Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: SteadyStacker on July 02, 2017, 04:25:26 PM
I'll admit I haven't been doing this because I became consumed with other life matters when i started reading about fba. Two things that really annoyed me about the process are

1. It was already addressed earlier in the thread,  but the endless restrictions when you first sign up. I would advise ferrying unrestricted in as many categories first, then try step 2 below.

2. Endless scanning without the possibility of finding anything profitable.

I'm not an active seller but if I get back into it I'd try working around this by looking at the amazon best seller lists, and then focus on finding those items from other sources, in hopes of finding a profitable one.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Lis on July 05, 2017, 09:10:59 AM
2. Endless scanning without the possibility of finding anything profitable.

This is what gets me. From everything I read it can be a learned skill and you get better as you go on, but I don't necessarily have the time, energy, or desire to work on it right now. (Cue the screams in the background - "but money!!")

Question for those who are big into RA/OA (not necessarily PL) - did you set up an LLC/some sort of official business to do this? What do your taxes look like?
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Bart1ma3u5 on July 06, 2017, 09:36:24 AM
2. Endless scanning without the possibility of finding anything profitable.

This is what gets me. From everything I read it can be a learned skill and you get better as you go on, but I don't necessarily have the time, energy, or desire to work on it right now. (Cue the screams in the background - "but money!!")

Question for those who are big into RA/OA (not necessarily PL) - did you set up an LLC/some sort of official business to do this? What do your taxes look like?

This is what I am hoping. I have been just scanning things as I am shopping or walking through stores and have so far bought a few items, they all seem to have lower seller rank than recommended or are not super profitable, but I've been buying them to get an idea of the process and to learn what I am doing. I am hoping as I get better at knowing what to look for I will gradually find things with higher seller ranks and are more profitable.

I am also curious about the tax question. I have been keeping track of each item and the buy, sell, shipping and fee prices in a spreadsheet, but not sure what to do with all of them yet.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on July 09, 2017, 10:28:08 AM
My wife already had a LLC from selling Jamberry nails so I put everything under that. You'll need to keep track of all your expenses for the business. You'll take the $$$ Amazon gives you throughout the year, subtract out your expenses, subtract the cost of your inventory, and what's left is your profit you'll owe taxes on. It's helpful to have a separate bank account and everything going in an out can be easily netted against each other.

This is a real business and if you don't have the time or the desire to work hard then it's not for you.

I'm 4 months into this, probably $12-13k in sales so far, haven't tracked my profit the past few months cause I'm spending all my time finding new items or replenishing items I've run out of stock in. I can see in the not too distant future I'll hit a ceiling of what I can do on my own as far as prep work goes. I'll need to outsource some or all of the prep work for packing and shipping to keep growing.

Waiting for my sales tax permit to come in so I can get approved in grocery. It's a gold mine out there for that stuff. Can't wait for fourth quarter to get here. About to go through my first textbook season In August so we'll see how that goes.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Bart1ma3u5 on July 10, 2017, 07:01:47 AM
Well I finally packaged my first shipment to a fulfillment center. Took a bit longer than I expected not knowing the process, and crossing my fingers i didnt miss anything crucial! Hopefully everything will go through without issues, and it gets easier from here on! Looking forward to the start of this journey. I also have a few items listed FBM mostly used books etc I can ship media mail, and am impatiently awaiting my first sale!
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: cantgrowone on July 13, 2017, 10:56:27 PM
I'd like to get into this. I have an Amazon account I opened ~11 years ago to buy all the things. However, I sold a used item 5 years ago and the buyer gave me negative feedback. Since then my personal account has been blocked from selling anything.

Phone support refuses to discuss why it is locked. Can anyone offer advice to navigate this so I can have many unlocked categories? Or am I better off creating a new seller account?

Here's my original email when they canceled my account in 2009.
Quote
Hello from Amazon.

We are writing to let you know that we have removed your selling privileges.

We took this action because our records indicate that this account is related to another selling account that was closed by Amazon. Once selling privileges have been removed, sellers are not allowed to establish new accounts.

Due to the proprietary nature of our business, we do not provide detailed information on how we determine that accounts are related.

While we appreciate your interest in selling on Amazon.com, the closure of this account is a permanent action.


Regards,

Seller Performance Team
Amazon.com
http://www.amazon.com
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: mustache you a question on July 19, 2017, 09:59:13 AM
I have a question about selling items on Amazon.  Say you do a private label item or even wholesale and you sell on FBA.  Do you ship the item directly to an FBA center?  Or do you have it shipped to a different location and then forwarded on to the nearest FBA center?
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Lis on July 19, 2017, 11:43:35 AM
I have a question about selling items on Amazon.  Say you do a private label item or even wholesale and you sell on FBA.  Do you ship the item directly to an FBA center?  Or do you have it shipped to a different location and then forwarded on to the nearest FBA center?

There are two different methods: Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) and Merchant Fulfilled (MF). If you chose FBA, you ship your items directly to Amazon, and they handle shipping it to a customer when it's ordered (bonus - it's shipped through Amazon Prime). The downside to this is that there are more fees associated it (which makes sense). With MF, you're in charge of storing your products and shipping them out as needed. The fee to do this is smaller, but obviously there's more work involved.

I'm not 100% sure if it works differently with PL, but in general, if you chose FBA, when you create a shipment on the Seller Central homepage, it will tell you which FBA center to ship to - it won't necessarily be the closest one. There's also the possibility of it being split into two or more shipments to different FBA centers. You're responsible for the shipping costs to the FBA center - they have a deal with UPS that makes shipping to Amazon *not awful* (I think I spent less than $8 shipping a 50lb box, though I don't remember to which location). I've never done MF, but I believe you just specify MF when you create a listing as well as add a shipping price (if you chose).
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: mustache you a question on July 19, 2017, 02:19:40 PM
I have a question about selling items on Amazon.  Say you do a private label item or even wholesale and you sell on FBA.  Do you ship the item directly to an FBA center?  Or do you have it shipped to a different location and then forwarded on to the nearest FBA center?

There are two different methods: Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) and Merchant Fulfilled (MF). If you chose FBA, you ship your items directly to Amazon, and they handle shipping it to a customer when it's ordered (bonus - it's shipped through Amazon Prime). The downside to this is that there are more fees associated it (which makes sense). With MF, you're in charge of storing your products and shipping them out as needed. The fee to do this is smaller, but obviously there's more work involved.

I'm not 100% sure if it works differently with PL, but in general, if you chose FBA, when you create a shipment on the Seller Central homepage, it will tell you which FBA center to ship to - it won't necessarily be the closest one. There's also the possibility of it being split into two or more shipments to different FBA centers. You're responsible for the shipping costs to the FBA center - they have a deal with UPS that makes shipping to Amazon *not awful* (I think I spent less than $8 shipping a 50lb box, though I don't remember to which location). I've never done MF, but I believe you just specify MF when you create a listing as well as add a shipping price (if you chose).

Thanks for the reply.  I guess I should clarify my question.  Is there any reason to mask where the shipment is going to if you are dealing with a wholesaler or to mask where a shipment is coming from if you are in private label?  I used to work for an e-commerce site that sold items on Amazon (we shipped out of our own distribution network).  They were always concerned that Amazon would copy the product and sell it themselves.  Is there any of that concern with FBA?
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on July 21, 2017, 11:05:29 AM
I have a question about selling items on Amazon.  Say you do a private label item or even wholesale and you sell on FBA.  Do you ship the item directly to an FBA center?  Or do you have it shipped to a different location and then forwarded on to the nearest FBA center?

There are two different methods: Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) and Merchant Fulfilled (MF). If you chose FBA, you ship your items directly to Amazon, and they handle shipping it to a customer when it's ordered (bonus - it's shipped through Amazon Prime). The downside to this is that there are more fees associated it (which makes sense). With MF, you're in charge of storing your products and shipping them out as needed. The fee to do this is smaller, but obviously there's more work involved.

I'm not 100% sure if it works differently with PL, but in general, if you chose FBA, when you create a shipment on the Seller Central homepage, it will tell you which FBA center to ship to - it won't necessarily be the closest one. There's also the possibility of it being split into two or more shipments to different FBA centers. You're responsible for the shipping costs to the FBA center - they have a deal with UPS that makes shipping to Amazon *not awful* (I think I spent less than $8 shipping a 50lb box, though I don't remember to which location). I've never done MF, but I believe you just specify MF when you create a listing as well as add a shipping price (if you chose).

Thanks for the reply.  I guess I should clarify my question.  Is there any reason to mask where the shipment is going to if you are dealing with a wholesaler or to mask where a shipment is coming from if you are in private label?  I used to work for an e-commerce site that sold items on Amazon (we shipped out of our own distribution network).  They were always concerned that Amazon would copy the product and sell it themselves.  Is there any of that concern with FBA?

If you do a big enough business on Amazon you can expect competition at some point. Whether that be from other sellers jumping onto the listing and making you share the buy box, other sellers creating copycat products and now you're competing for the ranking, or Amazon making their own product to compete with you. Generally Amazon doesn't get involved unless many millions of dollars are at stake. They do batteries and clothing and phone cables and mostly tech items.

If you're making a 'me-too' product, and it was easy for you to create, it'll be easy for someone else to copy it. Just the nature of things.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on July 29, 2017, 07:38:00 AM
After reading through this thread a couple of weeks ago I decided to give it a try. I started small with just a few hundred dollars planning to try my hand at retail/online arbitrage. I listed some new books I got when Hastings closed down last year that I had never got around to reading. Barely made anything on those. I found seven Gillette razors on clearance at a grocery store for $11 each and have sold all but one for $20+ $5 shipping credit. Actual shipping costs have been about $3, and in two cases I sold two at once which mean same shipping cost but double the shipping credit. I almost got burned because I later realized they were restricted. The bar code was covered up and when I used the Amazon seller app it came up with a different listing where someone had misspelled Gillette but it matched exactly the package I had (some comments indicated they were getting counterfeits).

I spent probably 4-5 hours scanning items at several Walmart, Target, and a couple other stores and just found one toy on clearance that might make a small profit. Everything else was either restricted or the margins were very slim due to the size/weight (i.e. Easy Bake Ovens on clearance that weight a few pounds each and come in a large box).

I decided to try out FBA and found a kitchen item on sale online for about $13 shipped that was selling for $35 in that particular color. I bought the dozen in stock and when they arrived got to spend about 40 minutes laboriously peeling off the sticker from the cardboard box showing they were discounted from $29.99 to $17.99. Luckily I was able to just reseal the box, slap on the FBA shipping label and drop it off at FedEx. 28 lbs. in a sizeable box shipped to the next state for $11.99. They should be available next week and I'll see how quickly they sell. Based on the sales rank they're selling about 80-90 per month and I plan to be the lowest price (about $1 less than Amazon). Hopefully they sell out in the next couple of weeks.

I also listened to some podcasts and started researching the sales tax aspect which can become pretty complicated/expensive. I already have a pretty demanding full time job plus a large family and a second career in the National Guard. Plus I'm going to be spending the next few months working on a professional designation which will eat up much of my already nonexistent free time. I may come back to this in a few months but I think I'm probably going to just try and sell out my current limited inventory and take a break. If I sell these dozen items through FBA I'll probably clear about $100 in profit but at the cost of probably 20-30 hours of research, shopping, packaging/prepping, etc. I can certainly see scaling this up and making more money at a better hourly rate but I work on commission and can make $30+/hour  just be working more at my regular job so it's kind of hard to justify spending so much time on something that probably won't make as much. That and my wife thinks I'm already stretched too thin and shouldn't take on anything else.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Cwadda on August 01, 2017, 08:48:13 AM
After reading through this thread a couple of weeks ago I decided to give it a try. I started small with just a few hundred dollars planning to try my hand at retail/online arbitrage. I listed some new books I got when Hastings closed down last year that I had never got around to reading. Barely made anything on those. I found seven Gillette razors on clearance at a grocery store for $11 each and have sold all but one for $20+ $5 shipping credit. Actual shipping costs have been about $3, and in two cases I sold two at once which mean same shipping cost but double the shipping credit. I almost got burned because I later realized they were restricted. The bar code was covered up and when I used the Amazon seller app it came up with a different listing where someone had misspelled Gillette but it matched exactly the package I had (some comments indicated they were getting counterfeits).

I spent probably 4-5 hours scanning items at several Walmart, Target, and a couple other stores and just found one toy on clearance that might make a small profit. Everything else was either restricted or the margins were very slim due to the size/weight (i.e. Easy Bake Ovens on clearance that weight a few pounds each and come in a large box).

I decided to try out FBA and found a kitchen item on sale online for about $13 shipped that was selling for $35 in that particular color. I bought the dozen in stock and when they arrived got to spend about 40 minutes laboriously peeling off the sticker from the cardboard box showing they were discounted from $29.99 to $17.99. Luckily I was able to just reseal the box, slap on the FBA shipping label and drop it off at FedEx. 28 lbs. in a sizeable box shipped to the next state for $11.99. They should be available next week and I'll see how quickly they sell. Based on the sales rank they're selling about 80-90 per month and I plan to be the lowest price (about $1 less than Amazon). Hopefully they sell out in the next couple of weeks.

I also listened to some podcasts and started researching the sales tax aspect which can become pretty complicated/expensive. I already have a pretty demanding full time job plus a large family and a second career in the National Guard. Plus I'm going to be spending the next few months working on a professional designation which will eat up much of my already nonexistent free time. I may come back to this in a few months but I think I'm probably going to just try and sell out my current limited inventory and take a break. If I sell these dozen items through FBA I'll probably clear about $100 in profit but at the cost of probably 20-30 hours of research, shopping, packaging/prepping, etc. I can certainly see scaling this up and making more money at a better hourly rate but I work on commission and can make $30+/hour  just be working more at my regular job so it's kind of hard to justify spending so much time on something that probably won't make as much. That and my wife thinks I'm already stretched too thin and shouldn't take on anything else.

I agree. I'm remodeling my house and work 2 other jobs. I might be spread too thin to do the Amazon business for now.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on August 07, 2017, 10:28:21 AM
(https://image.ibb.co/cRnJGa/IMG_4014.png) I hit this just a few days ago.

Here's the YTD number since the end of March when I started. Just doing this on the evenings and weekends.

(http://image.ibb.co/nd3ThF/SalesYTD.png)

I've made a lot of mistakes and learned a lot. I got approved in grocery a month ago and that has helped out tremendously. I'm finding all sorts of new things to sell.

I identified a product selling at a local grocery store for $10 and sells on Amazon for $30. It sells about 6 per day with only 1 other seller on the listing. I bought up all the stock in my town but they weren't able to order any more. I can't get a good answer from the store managers as to why they can't get more. I'm suspecting it's been discontinued. I've tried contacting the manufacturer to order directly from them but I haven't gotten any response from them. So I went down to Austin last weekend and hit up every store there (total of 14) and grabbed 108 of them (so total of $1,080 potential profit). I'll be heading down to San Antonio next weekend and hope to get the same amount. In a couple weeks I'll head down to Houston and I'm hoping to get over 200 units there.

FYI when someone posts their Amazon sales number that doesn't really mean anything. After Amazon takes out FBA fees (which are usually 1/3rd of the Amazon sales price) and you subtract your cost to buy the goods, you're looking at about 15-25% profit margin as compared to the Amazon total sales. Subtract other costs like shipping, supplies, gas, etc and what you're left with is your profit.

I honestly don't have any idea how much profit I've made so far, as everything has gone back into buying more inventory and i stopped tracking profits on each item with a spreadsheet a few months ago. I'm so busy buying, listing, packing and shipping that I don't have time for anything else. I'll probably buy Inventory Lab pretty soon ($50/mo) so it can track those numbers for me. Buying RepriceIT for only $10/mo a few months ago was worth every penny. I was spending too much time manually repricing.

I hope to get more into wholesaling late this year or early next year after the 4th quarter craze. I'm loving replenishable items and wholesaling is a logical extension to that. I'll sign up for a prep center to receive the goods, prep them and ship them to Amazon so I can focus on acquiring more inventory with my time. My retired dad has offered to help me with prep work, and I may take him up on that. I don't feel comfortable having him deal with heavy (up to 50 lbs) boxes though, he's like 66. So I may just have him focus on listing, labeling, stuff like that.

FYI using a hair dryer on those clearance labels will rock your world. Put some heat on them and the glue will give it up easily. Buy some Scott Peelers from Amazon as well, those are helpful on surfaces that won't allow heat or if you need some extra help. Goo Gone is perfect for taking away any residue left over after you peel off the sticker. Also keep in mind you can sometimes cover up the sticker with an Amazon FBA label and save you some time.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: mustache you a question on August 07, 2017, 02:38:08 PM
(https://image.ibb.co/cRnJGa/IMG_4014.png) I hit this just a few days ago.

Here's the YTD number since the end of March when I started. Just doing this on the evenings and weekends.

(http://image.ibb.co/nd3ThF/SalesYTD.png)

I've made a lot of mistakes and learned a lot. I got approved in grocery a month ago and that has helped out tremendously. I'm finding all sorts of new things to sell.

I identified a product selling at a local grocery store for $10 and sells on Amazon for $30. It sells about 6 per day with only 1 other seller on the listing. I bought up all the stock in my town but they weren't able to order any more. I can't get a good answer from the store managers as to why they can't get more. I'm suspecting it's been discontinued. I've tried contacting the manufacturer to order directly from them but I haven't gotten any response from them. So I went down to Austin last weekend and hit up every store there (total of 14) and grabbed 108 of them (so total of $1,080 potential profit). I'll be heading down to San Antonio next weekend and hope to get the same amount. In a couple weeks I'll head down to Houston and I'm hoping to get over 200 units there.

FYI when someone posts their Amazon sales number that doesn't really mean anything. After Amazon takes out FBA fees (which are usually 1/3rd of the Amazon sales price) and you subtract your cost to buy the goods, you're looking at about 15-25% profit margin as compared to the Amazon total sales. Subtract other costs like shipping, supplies, gas, etc and what you're left with is your profit.

I honestly don't have any idea how much profit I've made so far, as everything has gone back into buying more inventory and i stopped tracking profits on each item with a spreadsheet a few months ago. I'm so busy buying, listing, packing and shipping that I don't have time for anything else. I'll probably buy Inventory Lab pretty soon ($50/mo) so it can track those numbers for me. Buying RepriceIT for only $10/mo a few months ago was worth every penny. I was spending too much time manually repricing.

I hope to get more into wholesaling late this year or early next year after the 4th quarter craze. I'm loving replenishable items and wholesaling is a logical extension to that. I'll sign up for a prep center to receive the goods, prep them and ship them to Amazon so I can focus on acquiring more inventory with my time. My retired dad has offered to help me with prep work, and I may take him up on that. I don't feel comfortable having him deal with heavy (up to 50 lbs) boxes though, he's like 66. So I may just have him focus on listing, labeling, stuff like that.

FYI using a hair dryer on those clearance labels will rock your world. Put some heat on them and the glue will give it up easily. Buy some Scott Peelers from Amazon as well, those are helpful on surfaces that won't allow heat or if you need some extra help. Goo Gone is perfect for taking away any residue left over after you peel off the sticker. Also keep in mind you can sometimes cover up the sticker with an Amazon FBA label and save you some time.

hodedofome,

I know someone who did RA with Amazon, they told me Amazon was getting more stringent with what they allow people to sell, requiring invoices and proof of purchase.  Have you run into this at all? 
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on August 07, 2017, 03:10:58 PM
For some categories and lots of brands, yes you have to provide invoices. And some you have to get an authorization letter from the brand owner stating you can sell their products on Amazon. But as you can see that hasn't stopped me from making money, and I started in March. I wasn't grandfathered into anything, I've had to apply for everything just like a new seller would today in August.

The guy who got me started began a few years ago, and he's grandfathered into just about everything. It's not fair that he can go out and buy whatever Mattel and Little Tikes junk he wants, and I can't. But that's the way it goes.

It's not gonna stop me from throwing myself in and trying as hard as I can to knock this out of the park.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Cwadda on August 08, 2017, 08:56:33 AM
For some categories and lots of brands, yes you have to provide invoices. And some you have to get an authorization letter from the brand owner stating you can sell their products on Amazon. But as you can see that hasn't stopped me from making money, and I started in March. I wasn't grandfathered into anything, I've had to apply for everything just like a new seller would today in August.

The guy who got me started began a few years ago, and he's grandfathered into just about everything. It's not fair that he can go out and buy whatever Mattel and Little Tikes junk he wants, and I can't. But that's the way it goes.

It's not gonna stop me from throwing myself in and trying as hard as I can to knock this out of the park.

Question for you: how did you go about getting the grocery category approval? Is it difficult?
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: mustache you a question on August 08, 2017, 12:16:50 PM
For some categories and lots of brands, yes you have to provide invoices. And some you have to get an authorization letter from the brand owner stating you can sell their products on Amazon. But as you can see that hasn't stopped me from making money, and I started in March. I wasn't grandfathered into anything, I've had to apply for everything just like a new seller would today in August.

The guy who got me started began a few years ago, and he's grandfathered into just about everything. It's not fair that he can go out and buy whatever Mattel and Little Tikes junk he wants, and I can't. But that's the way it goes.

It's not gonna stop me from throwing myself in and trying as hard as I can to knock this out of the park.

Thanks for the answer!  I've been looking into Amazon FBA for the last month or so and have really focused on the private label piece of it.  I'd like to also do some RA but was concerned when I heard about the invoice issue.  Your answer definitely helped alleviate my concerns.

Thanks again!
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on August 08, 2017, 12:57:37 PM

Thanks for the answer!  I've been looking into Amazon FBA for the last month or so and have really focused on the private label piece of it.  I'd like to also do some RA but was concerned when I heard about the invoice issue.  Your answer definitely helped alleviate my concerns.

Thanks again!

Almost always the seller app will tell you that a brand is restricted so you know ahead of time. There are a few brands who aren't restricted but will hit you with intellectual property complaints if you try to sell their stuff. Here's some I've heard of:

Altec-Lansing
August
Belkin
BESTFactor
Boppy
Canary
Celestial Teas
Crime Scene
Disney Software
Drop Kitchen
EB5
Ecstacy Soaps
Honest Kitchen
Kinsa
Kong Pet Products
Kraken Aquatics
K'Tan
MHD
Nest
Nutramax
Ohuhu
Olay
Olympian Athletics Swimcaps
Philips Hue
Rapid Brands
Replogle Globes
Ring (Doorbell)
ThinkGizmos
UAG (Urban Armor Gear)
Vipertek
Ziwi Pet Products
Vic Conner

I wouldn't sell any of these products.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on August 08, 2017, 01:25:13 PM
Question for you: how did you go about getting the grocery category approval? Is it difficult?

Sign up for a free account on Pricemaster.com

You will either need to make 3 separate purchases if you don't have a sales tax certificate or Business License or Home Occupation Permit, or 1 purchase if you have 1 of those documents. I did 1 large purchase (probably too large) as well as submitted my Texas Sales Tax Certificate.

You will need to make sure the business name and address on the Pricemaster invoice is identical to the business name and address on your Amazon seller profile. Note this is not your store name, but the name you give Amazon for tax purposes. You want it to be clear to a foreign Amazon seller support associate that it is the same person/company.

The grocery application form will tell you how many units you need to have on the invoice, but plan on buying at least 10 cases of each item. If you need 3 invoices, then place 3 orders of 10 cases/boxes each.

Product 1: https://pricemaster.com//WALKERS-SHORTBREAD-ROUNDS-24PCSBOX?path=
matches with https://www.amazon.com/Walkers-Shortbread-1-2-oz-2-Count-Cookies/dp/B0019VM5FC

Product 2: https://pricemaster.com//HARIBO-DINOSAURS-5oz---12-BAGSCS?path=
matches with http://www.amazon.com/dp/B008M2DYOC

Product 3: https://pricemaster.com//KOOL-AID-BLACK-CHERRY-48S-3214?path=
matches with http://www.amazon.com/dp/B000ED6IZE

Expect to pay a good amount for shipping. Expect to lose a few bucks on this, but you won't lose a lot. These items sell well (you'll probably sell out within a month) and the ROI on each one is close to break-even after Amazon FBA fees. However, once you factor in shipping you'll probably lose a little bit. It's worth it though. I probably made the money back within a week or two. Grocery can be an awesome category.

You will need to send Amazon the 'original' invoice from Pricemaster. Just wait a day or two after placing the order and they will send it to you. Don't send in the order form or the online Order Invoice you get from the Pricemaster website. You should get an "Original Invoice" from them a day or two after placing the order.

Write the ASIN of the item next to each line item on the invoice. Assume the Amazon seller support has no idea how to read an invoice and figure it out on their own. Make it easy for them. Write down the appropriate ASIN on the same line, and cover up the pricing info. I used Kami online PDF annotation and markup tool. You can do it by hand if you want and scan in the invoice.




Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Cwadda on August 11, 2017, 10:06:43 AM
Question for you: how did you go about getting the grocery category approval? Is it difficult?

Sign up for a free account on Pricemaster.com

You will either need to make 3 separate purchases if you don't have a sales tax certificate or Business License or Home Occupation Permit, or 1 purchase if you have 1 of those documents. I did 1 large purchase (probably too large) as well as submitted my Texas Sales Tax Certificate.

You will need to make sure the business name and address on the Pricemaster invoice is identical to the business name and address on your Amazon seller profile. Note this is not your store name, but the name you give Amazon for tax purposes. You want it to be clear to a foreign Amazon seller support associate that it is the same person/company.

The grocery application form will tell you how many units you need to have on the invoice, but plan on buying at least 10 cases of each item. If you need 3 invoices, then place 3 orders of 10 cases/boxes each.

Product 1: https://pricemaster.com//WALKERS-SHORTBREAD-ROUNDS-24PCSBOX?path=
matches with https://www.amazon.com/Walkers-Shortbread-1-2-oz-2-Count-Cookies/dp/B0019VM5FC

Product 2: https://pricemaster.com//HARIBO-DINOSAURS-5oz---12-BAGSCS?path=
matches with http://www.amazon.com/dp/B008M2DYOC

Product 3: https://pricemaster.com//KOOL-AID-BLACK-CHERRY-48S-3214?path=
matches with http://www.amazon.com/dp/B000ED6IZE

Expect to pay a good amount for shipping. Expect to lose a few bucks on this, but you won't lose a lot. These items sell well (you'll probably sell out within a month) and the ROI on each one is close to break-even after Amazon FBA fees. However, once you factor in shipping you'll probably lose a little bit. It's worth it though. I probably made the money back within a week or two. Grocery can be an awesome category.

You will need to send Amazon the 'original' invoice from Pricemaster. Just wait a day or two after placing the order and they will send it to you. Don't send in the order form or the online Order Invoice you get from the Pricemaster website. You should get an "Original Invoice" from them a day or two after placing the order.

Write the ASIN of the item next to each line item on the invoice. Assume the Amazon seller support has no idea how to read an invoice and figure it out on their own. Make it easy for them. Write down the appropriate ASIN on the same line, and cover up the pricing info. I used Kami online PDF annotation and markup tool. You can do it by hand if you want and scan in the invoice.

Thanks so much for this info. I might go for it when time permits.

In the meantime, I've been looking into some bookkeeping softwares. I came across GoDaddy which seems reputable and a nice option, for only about $10/month. Inventory Lab seems a bit overpriced at $50/month, but it might have some extra features that are more tailored to Amazon FBA.
https://www.godaddy.com/email/online-bookkeeping#plans
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on August 14, 2017, 12:29:31 PM
I haven't subscribed to any accounting software yet but I'm about to pull the trigger on Inventory Lab. IL is supposed to make it easier to list your products and print out labels, among other things I'm sure. It also has a smartphone app for sourcing that is supposed to show you the keepa graphs for the product you're looking at, which is super handy. I've just been using the Amazon seller app for retail arbitrage and I've been burned several times trusting the rank the Amazon app tells me, but when I look at the keepa history it shows no sales. So I bought something that turned out to be dead inventory.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on August 14, 2017, 10:21:54 PM
Finally started getting some sales of my FBA inventory. I found some tea kettles for cheap online and bought a dozen at about $12each. With the ebates reward (including a $10 new user credit) my actual price including taxes was about $11. This particular color was selling on Amazon for $35 (most other colors were around $25) so I thought I had found a good deal and calculated a profit of about $7-8 each after FBA fees. By the time I got them to the warehouse the price was down to the low 30s. I tried to be a bit lower in order to win the buy box or at least get someone to click on the other sellers to save a few cents. Nope. Amazon was the lowest price and every time I dropped my price they matched it. Even when I went below my break-even point they followed right along. Finally I dropped the price a few dollars below my break-even price just to see how low Amazon would go thinking that maybe I could trick them into selling out of their stock at a lower price. I finally found the magic number where they didn't go any lower if I dropped down to $21.99. Amazon is at $22.24 and I've got the buy box. Within a few hours I had my first sale and four more after that within a little over a day. I'm losing about $2.50-$3.00 each but since I already decided to pull the plug for the time being I'm happy to just recoup most of my costs on this particular item. Had I looked at the history on CamelCamelCamel a bit closer I might have seen that they were always the lowest price and matched any third-party sellers.

Overall a valuable lesson that RA/OA isn't always as easy as it may seem to be. My $8 profit became a $3 loss because I was having to compete head to head with Amazon.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on August 20, 2017, 02:53:23 PM
If at all possible I don't compete with Amazon. They play dirty. There are plenty of items out there that they don't sell and those are where I'd put most of my focus. The only time I feel comfortable competing with them is when I've found an item on clearance/liquidation and I got it so cheap I don't care about getting in a price war. They will share the buy box, but they don't share it evenly.

Early on I found some financial calculators for $25 on clearance at Wal-Mart, selling for over $50 on Amazon with Amazon as a seller. Rank was like 5k. It sold all day long so all I had to do was drop my price a dollar and get a sale almost immediately.

Recently I found stacks of new books for $0.50 each at a liquidation store. Amazon was a seller on some of them but I still get a sale about every week or two. I just let my repricer match them and eventually they'll rotate me in the buy box. You have to be patient though and like I said, most times I don't buy an item if they are a seller.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: NorthernDreamer on August 21, 2017, 09:56:15 AM
I'm super interested in this idea.

Anyone doing FBA in Canada?

Once you've mailed your items to the warehouse, is it easy to get your items back from Amazon if they don't sell or you decide to stop?

What brands are prohibited? I assume Disney....  Gah just realized there are three pages of info here, found my answer...
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: TheCrew on August 23, 2017, 01:15:13 PM
I'm posting to follow this. I just launched my first FBA product a few weeks ago. How are gaining reviews? I want to turn on PPC, but feel like I need to wait to get enough reviews to make it worth it?
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on August 29, 2017, 09:42:27 AM
I'm posting to follow this. I just launched my first FBA product a few weeks ago. How are gaining reviews? I want to turn on PPC, but feel like I need to wait to get enough reviews to make it worth it?

I haven't done any private label, nor have I gotten big into listing new products yet. But here's what I've learned so far:

Look at your competitor's listings on the front page of Amazon. See how their listings are different from yours. Do they have more pictures? Do they have better pictures? Do they have action shots? Is the description better and longer? Are they using up all the available bullet points? What are their keywords?

Free keyword search tool: http://sonar-tool.com/us/
Also you can use Google's keyword generator and Helium 10 for keyword research.

I've read about vipon.com, where you do a promotion using amztracker.com to get lots of 'VIP' people to buy your product at a discount, review it, then you're off to the races.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: tralfamadorian on August 29, 2017, 01:05:10 PM
You all inspired me to expand my Amazon business; I'm giving wholesale a try with a couple of new brands. 
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: CargoBiker on August 29, 2017, 09:10:13 PM
I'm posting to follow this. I just launched my first FBA product a few weeks ago. How are gaining reviews? I want to turn on PPC, but feel like I need to wait to get enough reviews to make it worth it?

Depends on how competitive the niche is and what your CPC is.

PPC isn't going to convert well without reviews. 

If the the niche is competitive and the CPCs are high, you are going to lose money on ads.

If the niche is non-competitive and the CPCs are cheap, you will probably make money on ads, even without reviews.


Bonus takeaway:  Getting sales through PPC will increase your organic search rank, which will increase organic (free) sales, which will increase your organic search rank, which will increase organic sales, which will...


See where I'm going with that?   What seems to be unprofitable at first, might be an extremely profitable investment in the long-term.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on August 30, 2017, 08:03:18 AM
Finally signed up for Inventory Lab so I could track my actual profits from this side gig. I was selling too much to try to do this manually on a spreadsheet. I'm selling ~$13k/month on Amazon now, looks like actual profit is about 25% of that. Note that this screenshot includes all my inventory cost and Amazon fees, but there's a few outside expenses I didn't include yet. Most likely I've made ~$3k profit for August when it's all said and done. This number is from 8/1-8/29, so there's a few days left that's not reflected.

(https://preview.ibb.co/bCDisQ/inventorylab.png) (https://ibb.co/kxuCmk)
what is image hosting (https://imgbb.com/)

As of this point, I put $12k into buying inventory and supplies and whatnot up to this point. As of today I've received $18k back from Amazon, so I guess you could say I've made $6k or 50% Return on Investment. I started from nothing late March. However, I'm not new to running a business, and I've traded stocks and commodities on the side since 2011. There's been a lot of knowledge transfer from my experience to this business, so I bet I've picked up on it quicker than someone who's never done anything like this before.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Cwadda on August 30, 2017, 10:16:52 AM
Finally signed up for Inventory Lab so I could track my actual profits from this side gig. I was selling too much to try to do this manually on a spreadsheet. I'm selling ~$13k/month on Amazon now, looks like actual profit is about 25% of that. Note that this screenshot includes all my inventory cost and Amazon fees, but there's a few outside expenses I didn't include yet. Most likely I've made ~$3k profit for August when it's all said and done. This number is from 8/1-8/29, so there's a few days left that's not reflected.

(https://preview.ibb.co/bCDisQ/inventorylab.png) (https://ibb.co/kxuCmk)
what is image hosting (https://imgbb.com/)

As of this point, I put $12k into buying inventory and supplies and whatnot up to this point. As of today I've received $18k back from Amazon, so I guess you could say I've made $6k or 50% Return on Investment. I started from nothing late March. However, I'm not new to running a business, and I've traded stocks and commodities on the side since 2011. There's been a lot of knowledge transfer from my experience to this business, so I bet I've picked up on it quicker than someone who's never done anything like this before.
Do you know if it's possible to just sign up for this around tax day and have all the figures calculated from the year? $40/month is pricey for me right now.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on August 30, 2017, 12:45:33 PM
There's a free trial but it only goes back 2 months. If you pay you can get all your data synched. I think month to month it's $50, and takes a few days to sync your data. Plus you have to put in all your inventory costs and expenses for it to be accurate.

I'm just gonna dump spreadsheets of my credit card transactions and add that up as my expenses. Then take the payouts I received from Amazon for the year and record that as my income. Cash basis is the simplest way to go and I like simple.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on August 30, 2017, 04:08:01 PM
Also, notice on my income statement that I had $688.76 in reimbursements this month. That's because UPS damaged and discarded an entire box of inventory I sent Amazon back in late June. It took about a month before the shipment was able to be investigated, and almost another month for the investigation to conclude that yes, all my crap was destroyed and it wasn't my fault. It was over $300 my cost for that box. Amazon eventually reimbursed me, along with the potential profit I would have had, but it took a while.

You'll need to check each shipment after it's been received and make sure that they received the same number of items you sent them. It's amazing the number of times they say I only sent 3 when I sent 5, or whatever. You have to open up an investigation on each shipment, and you have to wait like a month before it's 'available' to be investigated.

There are plenty of times a seller can feel like Amazon is screwing them over, but sometimes it comes out in your favor as well. Amazon says I sent them 2 textbooks that sell for $200 each, when I only sent 1. I would have known if I had more than 1 of those!!! Anyways, both of them sold and I was credited for the sale. That 1 book alone probably paid for a lot of the items Amazon has 'lost' and not reimbursed me for over the past few months. I'm guessing it ends up in a wash.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: RFord617 on September 08, 2017, 07:50:28 PM
Interested in following this thread. My wife and I finally started selling on amazon more seriously. I've had a seller account for a few years, but never did more than a few random sales because of life. Then I watched two of my best friends both create full time incomes from home through amazon. This year, we made the decision for my wife not to go back to teaching (it had taken a toll over the 6 years and we're young enough to take some chances) and keep her full time at home to attack the amazon model.

We started off dabbling in drop shipping, which one of my friends does and makes a good living. We decided we liked the FBA model much better, and just switched to that. Our first shipments just went out yesterday. If anyone is interested, I'd be more than happy to update.

A bit of food for thought on how we approached this. The whole purpose of this venture was to build a method to replace my wife's income so she could raise our kids. Right now we don't "NEED" the income and are in a place to take some chances. We set up and LLC and ALL of the infrastructure before doing anything. This included, which I'm thankful for already, purchasing the best software and tools to make the job as streamlined as possible from the jump. This included a thermal label printer, Inventory Lab, and all the extra stuff I knew we would need. I've spent a lot of time trying to set my wife up for success, and so far so good. We spent around $1500 on inventory this week, and plan to repeat next week. All works out, there should be at least an average 25% ROI.

If you want to get into this, know the competition is out there, but there is plenty of money to make. Unless you jump into with both feet though, it will be very discouraging at first. Having the tools to make the job much easier is an immediate relief and will make life much better, which in turn will help you grow faster.

There's a lot of good info in this thread for anyone thinking of making the jump.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: SimpleGuy on September 15, 2017, 09:11:44 PM
I'm interested in this too, although I'm a bit skeptical.  Sounds too good to be true.  For those of you who are selling with FBA, how much are you making per hour?  I'm considering working part time over the next 10 years instead of full time for 5, and something like this would be perfect.  But only if it would be more profitable then a low stress job making $10-12/hour.   

RFord617 - how much did you spend getting set up for your operation?

Thanks.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on September 19, 2017, 01:07:46 AM
Update: I haven't had much time to source the past month so my sales have flattened and actually dropped about 10%. I'll probably make somewhere between $2-3k profit for September. Working about 5-10 hours a week. I just bought a house so for the next month all I'm doing is re-ordering replenishables that I run out of stock of. I realize 4th quarter is coming up and I want to hit that hard end of October and all of November.

Amazon just started auto-approving most of the sub-categories, at least for more experienced sellers. I was able to get into all of them and it's awesome. Supplements, baby products, OTC medicine etc. There's a lot of that stuff on clearance in stores and it's high dollar too. I can tell it's going to help tremendously.

Plan is to hit Q4 hard with OA and RA, and in 2018 grow into wholesaling. I want to get a virtual assistant soon to source for me on the OA side.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Crusading Angel on October 07, 2017, 03:11:05 AM
I'm interested in this too, although I'm a bit skeptical.  Sounds too good to be true.  For those of you who are selling with FBA, how much are you making per hour?  I'm considering working part time over the next 10 years instead of full time for 5, and something like this would be perfect.  But only if it would be more profitable then a low stress job making $10-12/hour.   

RFord617 - how much did you spend getting set up for your operation?

Thanks.

It's definitely not too good to be true. It's a steep learning curve, but it's extremely easy once you have everything set up. I've done seller-fulfilled for 3 years. Just got into FBA a year ago. I've made about $12,000 in the last 3 months working about 10 hours per week. Everything is pretty much automated for me now other than buy items online and repackaging everything to ship them to Amazon. At the rate I'm going it's about 100$/hr. I make all of this from my couch. Honestly my biggest problem is the way I source my product. The place I buy from puts limits on what I can buy with each order. So if I want to buy like 100 of something I have to put in 20-30 orders. My UPS and mailman guy also both hate me. I have a huge staircase up to my house. They probably bring a couple hundred packages up those stairs each month.

I do have some tips that are a little uncommon but can help you make extra profit.

1. Definitely get InventoryLabs for tax purposes. I use to spend the bulk of my time entering stuff into my spreadsheet. I don't have to do that any more. In fact I made about $130,000 in sales in the last 3 months and it would be a MAJOR headache to do this by hand.

2. Use online portals if you plan on buying from well known stores like walmart/target etc. I received an extra $1500 in cashback for this year alone from doing that.

3. Use credit cards to purchase your items. Manufacture spending on those cards for free vacations etc. My chase ink earns me 5x points back. I can use it to buy gift cards from cardcash or paypal digital gifts from ebay to earn that 5x back. I also use 2% credit cards and cards that offers 0% intro APR. In fact I got a Amex Blue Plus Biz card from Amex. They gave me a $21,000 limit for like a year on 0% APR. That's how I was able to grow my business immensely. This is the points and miles I've about gained within the last year or two. 60k ANA 55k Lufthansa 2 Fairmont Free Nights 75k Mariott 45k SPG 7.5k Hyatt + 2 Free Nights 267k MR 201k UR 201k Delta 110k American (In Progress). I can pretty much redeem the American Express MR points and Chase UR points for an extra ~5,000. I churn credit cards for sign-up bonuses, kind of like what some people do with churning bank accounts.

4. Get a CPA. I actually haven't gotten one yet.... Last year I made only like 20k in sales and 7k in profit (without Amazon FBA) and figured I could do my taxes myself. I'm definitely getting one now. Also don't be like me and put spending on random cards, ideally get a business card to track your spending. Because I'm going to have a headache come tax time when the CPA tries to balance my spending. Oh and also maybe get a business checking account to separate business and personal spending. You probably won't really need this if you your business is starting out small.'

5. Go and watch amazon videos on how to start becoming an Amazon FBA seller. All it took was for me to watch an hour long video. The first week was nerve wrecking, but it was easy sailing from there. I don't have the exact link, but just search on youtube.

6. I honestly might start outsourcing the prepping of my inventory. There are actually companies out there that can do it for you for a price. Might be a good idea later on if you get big. One of my biggest problems is space in my house as well as having these mail carriers ship large amount of items to my house. They start to ask questions.

7. Inventory often get misplaced by Amazon. They won't always reimburse you for it. I use a 3rd party program to get them to auto-reconcile for me. I spend $40 a month on this like inventor lab. Again think of it this way. I make about $100 an hour because I automate everything. It costs $80 for me to have programs find my lost items and to record my sales. That's an extra hour I might have to source products or just chillax. It's a worthy investment.

8. Slickdeals is not too bad of a place to look for inventory to sell. They're one off items, but money is money.

Here's my IL. I'm jealous of you though hodedofome I could get the same ROI lol. On the bright side I do earn a lot of points doing this though.

Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Cwadda on October 09, 2017, 07:29:44 AM
I'm interested in this too, although I'm a bit skeptical.  Sounds too good to be true.  For those of you who are selling with FBA, how much are you making per hour?  I'm considering working part time over the next 10 years instead of full time for 5, and something like this would be perfect.  But only if it would be more profitable then a low stress job making $10-12/hour.   

RFord617 - how much did you spend getting set up for your operation?

Thanks.

It's definitely not too good to be true. It's a steep learning curve, but it's extremely easy once you have everything set up. I've done seller-fulfilled for 3 years. Just got into FBA a year ago. I've made about $12,000 in the last 3 months working about 10 hours per week. Everything is pretty much automated for me now other than buy items online and repackaging everything to ship them to Amazon. At the rate I'm going it's about 100$/hr. I make all of this from my couch. Honestly my biggest problem is the way I source my product. The place I buy from puts limits on what I can buy with each order. So if I want to buy like 100 of something I have to put in 20-30 orders. My UPS and mailman guy also both hate me. I have a huge staircase up to my house. They probably bring a couple hundred packages up those stairs each month.

I do have some tips that are a little uncommon but can help you make extra profit.

1. Definitely get InventoryLabs for tax purposes. I use to spend the bulk of my time entering stuff into my spreadsheet. I don't have to do that any more. In fact I made about $130,000 in sales in the last 3 months and it would be a MAJOR headache to do this by hand.

2. Use online portals if you plan on buying from well known stores like walmart/target etc. I received an extra $1500 in cashback for this year alone from doing that.

3. Use credit cards to purchase your items. Manufacture spending on those cards for free vacations etc. My chase ink earns me 5x points back. I can use it to buy gift cards from cardcash or paypal digital gifts from ebay to earn that 5x back. I also use 2% credit cards and cards that offers 0% intro APR. In fact I got a Amex Blue Plus Biz card from Amex. They gave me a $21,000 limit for like a year on 0% APR. That's how I was able to grow my business immensely. This is the points and miles I've about gained within the last year or two. 60k ANA 55k Lufthansa 2 Fairmont Free Nights 75k Mariott 45k SPG 7.5k Hyatt + 2 Free Nights 267k MR 201k UR 201k Delta 110k American (In Progress). I can pretty much redeem the American Express MR points and Chase UR points for an extra ~5,000. I churn credit cards for sign-up bonuses, kind of like what some people do with churning bank accounts.

4. Get a CPA. I actually haven't gotten one yet.... Last year I made only like 20k in sales and 7k in profit (without Amazon FBA) and figured I could do my taxes myself. I'm definitely getting one now. Also don't be like me and put spending on random cards, ideally get a business card to track your spending. Because I'm going to have a headache come tax time when the CPA tries to balance my spending. Oh and also maybe get a business checking account to separate business and personal spending. You probably won't really need this if you your business is starting out small.'

5. Go and watch amazon videos on how to start becoming an Amazon FBA seller. All it took was for me to watch an hour long video. The first week was nerve wrecking, but it was easy sailing from there. I don't have the exact link, but just search on youtube.

6. I honestly might start outsourcing the prepping of my inventory. There are actually companies out there that can do it for you for a price. Might be a good idea later on if you get big. One of my biggest problems is space in my house as well as having these mail carriers ship large amount of items to my house. They start to ask questions.

7. Inventory often get misplaced by Amazon. They won't always reimburse you for it. I use a 3rd party program to get them to auto-reconcile for me. I spend $40 a month on this like inventor lab. Again think of it this way. I make about $100 an hour because I automate everything. It costs $80 for me to have programs find my lost items and to record my sales. That's an extra hour I might have to source products or just chillax. It's a worthy investment.

8. Slickdeals is not too bad of a place to look for inventory to sell. They're one off items, but money is money.

Here's my IL. I'm jealous of you though hodedofome I could get the same ROI lol. On the bright side I do earn a lot of points doing this though.

Thanks for the tips.  $12k profit is really nice, congrats.

And I thought I was doing pretty well for my first 2 months lol.  I'm averaging $1500/month in sales doing RA only and work maybe 5 hours a week.  But this number is also growing as I find the right things to sell.  Last week I found 57 copies of a very popular book, which would give $6 profit each (potential $335 profit).  My returns are similar to hodedofome's.  I'm finding difficulty in scaling everything up (replenishable items, online sourcing, etc).  But I haven't invested in the powerful software programs out there yet.

I'd like to scale up more to hodedofome and Crusading Angel's level.  Still have some learning to do :P
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: SimpleGuy on October 09, 2017, 09:25:41 PM
Crusading Angel - thanks for the tips.

7. Inventory often get misplaced by Amazon. They won't always reimburse you for it. I use a 3rd party program to get them to auto-reconcile for me. I spend $40 a month on this like inventor lab. Again think of it this way. I make about $100 an hour because I automate everything. It costs $80 for me to have programs find my lost items and to record my sales. That's an extra hour I might have to source products or just chillax. It's a worthy investment.

I was on the Amazon Sellers Forum and read a lot of complaints about lost inventory.  Sounds like it has gotten worse in the last few years.  That concerns me.  Can that be written off?  Or do you just have to eat it?
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: VA Mustache on October 12, 2017, 10:00:03 AM
My thanks to all the experienced hands posting on this thread. I've been skeptical of some of the gurus claiming great Amazon FBA ROI. Hearing of the success of fellow Mustachians is reassuring.

Much appreciated, all!
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on October 18, 2017, 01:22:42 PM
Crusading Angel - thanks for the tips.

7. Inventory often get misplaced by Amazon. They won't always reimburse you for it. I use a 3rd party program to get them to auto-reconcile for me. I spend $40 a month on this like inventor lab. Again think of it this way. I make about $100 an hour because I automate everything. It costs $80 for me to have programs find my lost items and to record my sales. That's an extra hour I might have to source products or just chillax. It's a worthy investment.

I was on the Amazon Sellers Forum and read a lot of complaints about lost inventory.  Sounds like it has gotten worse in the last few years.  That concerns me.  Can that be written off?  Or do you just have to eat it?

Whatever complaints people have about Amazon, it's not enough to make them leave and go somewhere else. This is the cost of playing on the greatest e-commerce platform in the history of the world. If I make a few thousand per month working a few hours a week, and Amazon screws me over on a few hundred bucks a month, am I gonna complain? Sure. Am I gonna leave?

Heck no.

The only thing that will get me to leave is if Amazon closes my account.

I just eat the inventory. Either give it away, re-wrap it for gifts, or use it. I got enough Gain multi-purpose spray to last me a year or two. I have enough 'miracle cleaning cloths' to take care of female family's christmas gifts. I have enough slimey goo creation kits for a few years of my kids' birthdays and whatnot. Just comes with the territory.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Wayward on October 26, 2017, 08:55:51 AM
Following!  I have been interested in selling on Amazon FBA, but am nervous to get started and not sure of what to sell. Will check out the podcasts and sites mentioned here!
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: rab-bit on November 03, 2017, 04:09:54 PM
PTF
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Crusading Angel on November 17, 2017, 01:26:43 AM
Crusading Angel - thanks for the tips.

7. Inventory often get misplaced by Amazon. They won't always reimburse you for it. I use a 3rd party program to get them to auto-reconcile for me. I spend $40 a month on this like inventor lab. Again think of it this way. I make about $100 an hour because I automate everything. It costs $80 for me to have programs find my lost items and to record my sales. That's an extra hour I might have to source products or just chillax. It's a worthy investment.

I was on the Amazon Sellers Forum and read a lot of complaints about lost inventory.  Sounds like it has gotten worse in the last few years.  That concerns me.  Can that be written off?  Or do you just have to eat it?

Sometimes you just eat it. Although as I mentioned there are sites out there that will help you with this as well. I mentioned Invy Lab in 7. for data keeping. Forgot to mention the thing I use for lost inventory. I use Refund XRay which is $99 a year. They allow you to check twice a month for any lost inventory. Essentially you download several reports (they have videos to show you how to dl each report) and then you upload it into their system and they automatically read out your lost inventory for you. I then copy and paste the information and open cases with Amazon. It has helped me get some money back, but it's a little glitchy and annoying to do manually. This past month for example I checked some inventory and amazon had already reimbursed me for some and they still gave me the inventory as missing. It's definitely worth the $99 since I'm basically at 300k in sales at this point. I'm not sure of the exact number but I've definitely gotten way more than $99 back.

I also use refundmanager. I originally used this a few months ago when I was smaller and I still do. They charge you 25% of what you get reimbursed back. They automate everything and opens the case on Amazon for you. They've helped me find ~400 in the last 10 month. I'm sure both of these missed some inventory, but I've definitely got reimbursed for probably 1k+ that I probably wouldn't have gotten back while paying only $200 in fees. Refundmanager is great if you're small time while Refund Xray is great for bigger sellers.

Sorry for the late reply btw. Haven't checked mmm forums in a while.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Crusading Angel on November 17, 2017, 01:32:24 AM
Following!  I have been interested in selling on Amazon FBA, but am nervous to get started and not sure of what to sell. Will check out the podcasts and sites mentioned here!

Oh I found the youtube video that helped me get started with my amazon fba business I mentioned in my post. I'll post it here for anyone that's interested. Feel free to pm or post here with your questions!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vVYNJOEeotQ
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hgjjgkj on November 19, 2017, 11:47:51 AM
For some of the more experienced folks here do you have an estimated all in cost to start doing this?  Do you feel the market is saturated due to ubiquitous tools like Jungle Scout?
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on November 27, 2017, 02:21:41 PM
I'm thinking of trying to get back into this but it feels like the online/retail arbitrage space is pretty crowded and that Amazon is making it harder and harder for those who aren't legitimate resellers.

It looks like finding a wholesaler, or better yet a manufacturer, of a product that is already selling would be a lot more stable. You could just replenish your inventory and take advantage of the bulk pricing. Every time I looked for profitable things to sell at a typical store like Walmart or Target it was almost all restricted or wouldn't even break even after all of the fees. The barriers to entry are minimal whereas if you could build a relationship with a manufacturer or wholesale, especially with a restricted brand, you wouldn't face the same kind of competition.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: NestEggChick (formerly PFgal) on December 20, 2017, 12:48:45 PM
Thank you all so much for sharing your awesome experiences! I have a question that I think applies to retail arbitrage too, though I'm specifically looking to do private label. I see a lot of people talking in Facebook groups and on podcasts about big income numbers, but then they also say that they put all of that money back into their business to buy more inventory. That makes sense, to a certain extent, but then does the cycle ever end?

If you're always putting 99% (or some other high number) of profits into buying more inventory, are you ever really making a profit? And for someone who does this as their full time gig, how do you make a living off of it? I would need to make enough money to not only buy inventory, but pay my rent, groceries, and other life expenses. What do you all think? Is this doable? Thanks for your advice!
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on December 20, 2017, 01:47:12 PM
Thank you all so much for sharing your awesome experiences! I have a question that I think applies to retail arbitrage too, though I'm specifically looking to do private label. I see a lot of people talking in Facebook groups and on podcasts about big income numbers, but then they also say that they put all of that money back into their business to buy more inventory. That makes sense, to a certain extent, but then does the cycle ever end?

If you're always putting 99% (or some other high number) of profits into buying more inventory, are you ever really making a profit? And for someone who does this as their full time gig, how do you make a living off of it? I would need to make enough money to not only buy inventory, but pay my rent, groceries, and other life expenses. What do you all think? Is this doable? Thanks for your advice!

I highly recommend the EcomCrew podcast and website - https://www.ecomcrew.com/. One topic they frequently discuss is how difficult it is to manage cash flow in an inventory based business. If you buy $5,000 of stuff from China it might be three months until it's delivered and ready to sell. If it takes another six months to sell through that order you have your $5,000 locked up for 3-9 months. Then three months after you start selling you have to re-order and you need another $5,000 but you've only earned maybe $4,000 from selling the first half of your previous shipment. If you're growing and need to place even larger re-orders then the problem would become even more acute.

It's a balance between growing the business and taking out enough to live on. In general you'll probably need to have some other source of income for the first few months if not first year or two. If you expect to be able to immediately start pulling out thousands each month to live on it's not very realistic unless you have a pretty substantial amount of startup money. Many businesses are not immediately profitable, and even if they are, it's probably not enough to live on until you grow larger.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: NestEggChick (formerly PFgal) on December 20, 2017, 04:36:45 PM
Thanks for your input, Michael in ABQ. I'll definitely check out that site. What's your opinion on how long it takes to start making a profit than can be withdrawn from the business - maybe not enough to live on, but something to help support oneself, like $1000 per month?
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on December 20, 2017, 05:06:34 PM
Thanks for your input, Michael in ABQ. I'll definitely check out that site. What's your opinion on how long it takes to start making a profit than can be withdrawn from the business - maybe not enough to live on, but something to help support oneself, like $1000 per month?

Good question but I'm probably not the one to answer it. My brief foray resulted in about $400-500 in sales over a few months with basically no profit to show for it. Some others in this thread have done far better.

If you're doing private label then obviously there's going to be more upfront costs and a long timeframe - especially if you're sourcing internationally. If you're doing online or retail arbitrage you could be profitable within your first month though I doubt you'd be able to pull any significant money out in the first few months either way.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Cwadda on December 22, 2017, 01:27:43 PM
For anyone curious, I'm currently generating $8000/month in sales, operating at a 25% profit margin. It's livable income for me, but I'm a single guy. I also have other income streams, so I just invest the profits back into buying more inventory, like what hodedofome is doing.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: retireatbirth on December 22, 2017, 07:17:35 PM
For anyone curious, I'm currently generating $8000/month in sales, operating at a 25% profit margin. It's livable income for me, but I'm a single guy. I also have other income streams, so I just invest the profits back into buying more inventory, like what hodedofome is doing.

Private label? Doing the recommended to buy a small product you can sell for about $20 or do you have a different approach?
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Cwadda on December 23, 2017, 05:43:50 PM
For anyone curious, I'm currently generating $8000/month in sales, operating at a 25% profit margin. It's livable income for me, but I'm a single guy. I also have other income streams, so I just invest the profits back into buying more inventory, like what hodedofome is doing.

Private label? Doing the recommended to buy a small product you can sell for about $20 or do you have a different approach?

Nope, just retail arbitrage.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Crusading Angel on January 02, 2018, 06:25:57 AM
I'm thinking of trying to get back into this but it feels like the online/retail arbitrage space is pretty crowded and that Amazon is making it harder and harder for those who aren't legitimate resellers.

It looks like finding a wholesaler, or better yet a manufacturer, of a product that is already selling would be a lot more stable. You could just replenish your inventory and take advantage of the bulk pricing. Every time I looked for profitable things to sell at a typical store like Walmart or Target it was almost all restricted or wouldn't even break even after all of the fees. The barriers to entry are minimal whereas if you could build a relationship with a manufacturer or wholesale, especially with a restricted brand, you wouldn't face the same kind of competition.

I really suggest using slickdeals and looking for places with "sales/holiday sales" if you're going for the traditional retail arbitrage route. I.e. black friday last year (2016?) they were selling mario 3ds (xl or something) for 100$ before tax at target. I bought 3 of them from target and went and sold them for $50 profit each. I knew this was a deal because I owned an older version that I bought for ~$200. (I should have bought more lol.........). Although I didn't because I thought there was going to be a large influx of sellers deflating the price.

I feel like it really helps you a lot more if you find a product or category you're interested. Then go and search other websites out there that may or may not be big names to find your products. Slickdeals can really help with that since they allow you to search for deals by categories. I essentially have 0.0 replenishable items on my amazon store. However, I know that every few weeks or every few holidays they hold a sale. Hence I'm essentially able to keep investing money back into items.

I mean of course the wholesale route works too. I'm just saying it's entirely possible to still the retail arbitrage group. I mean some of the things I sell have sales ranks of 1000 or less and "most" of the time I still make profit off of them. I'm just trying to prove that it's not too crowded per se. You just have to work out the angles. Granted I'm sure there are tons of other sellers out there making more than I am through wholesale.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Crusading Angel on January 02, 2018, 06:47:03 AM
Thanks for your input, Michael in ABQ. I'll definitely check out that site. What's your opinion on how long it takes to start making a profit than can be withdrawn from the business - maybe not enough to live on, but something to help support oneself, like $1000 per month?

Let me give you my honest opinion. Personally I don't think it's never too late or too early to start withdrawing your money. I'm sure you know this already, but a lot of time it takes money to make money. My advice when you're first starting out is to take out what you need to live your average daily life. Then when your business grows take out a little more and so on and so forth. It's like compounding interest. The more that you invest in your business, the more you can make (granted that your business is doing well and making a profit).

As far as profits? Meh it really depends on what you sell, the price you buy it for, the price you sell it for, the numbers of fba sellers, buy box potential just to name a few. It's hard to tell because it varies from product to product and category to category. My advice is to watch the sales rank when you first get into this. Don't buy items with sales ranking in the hundreds of k's or millions because those will take forever to sell and will take a longer time for you to see profits and scale your business. It can work but again it varies with products...

My situation is different than some other FBA sellers because I solely use credit cards to make all of my purchases. I pay every balance off each month so don't worry xD. I essentially put money into my business and then cash it out every month.

I personally take it out profits for basic daily cost of living. Other than that I take money out when I know I can make higher ROI through other methods to diversify my cash flow.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: max9505672 on January 02, 2018, 07:50:10 AM
Post to follow!
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on January 16, 2018, 04:50:09 PM
Those of you doing retail or online arbitrage. What tools are you using to source inventory? I've found a few things on slickdeals like a $20 Yankee Candle that was $1.70 after tax at Walmart when I rang it up even though the display still said it was $15. One store nearby supposedly has 8 more in stock so I'm planning to stop by on the way home from work. Another store 50 miles away shows 39 in stock and even with shipping and Amazon fees I figure I'll net about $10 each. Hard to justify driving all that way if it's a bust, especially since I have to listed it as used - like new since I'm restricted from selling it in new condition. Got another one-off deal at Macy's with a $10 mail-in rebate.

I found brickseek.com which shows you current inventory for various deals at Walmart, Target, and Lowes. Thinking about signing up for the premium version which is $10 a month. I pass by a few Walmart stores on my way too and from work so it's not to hard to stop in and check if a deal is actually in stock.

Are you mostly finding things at big box retailers like Walmart, Target, etc. or are you finding other sources? There's a lot of stuff on clearance at Walmart, especially toys, but it's virtually all gated. I found one non-gated brand and sold a few. When I went to list another it was now gated but I did get auto approved.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: max9505672 on January 17, 2018, 07:23:52 AM
Those of you doing retail or online arbitrage. What tools are you using to source inventory? I've found a few things on slickdeals like a $20 Yankee Candle that was $1.70 after tax at Walmart when I rang it up even though the display still said it was $15. One store nearby supposedly has 8 more in stock so I'm planning to stop by on the way home from work. Another store 50 miles away shows 39 in stock and even with shipping and Amazon fees I figure I'll net about $10 each. Hard to justify driving all that way if it's a bust, especially since I have to listed it as used - like new since I'm restricted from selling it in new condition. Got another one-off deal at Macy's with a $10 mail-in rebate.

I found brickseek.com which shows you current inventory for various deals at Walmart, Target, and Lowes. Thinking about signing up for the premium version which is $10 a month. I pass by a few Walmart stores on my way too and from work so it's not to hard to stop in and check if a deal is actually in stock.

Are you mostly finding things at big box retailers like Walmart, Target, etc. or are you finding other sources? There's a lot of stuff on clearance at Walmart, especially toys, but it's virtually all gated. I found one non-gated brand and sold a few. When I went to list another it was now gated but I did get auto approved.
Tactical Arbitrage is very powerful for OA. It's pretty expensive though at 150$/month.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Cwadda on January 17, 2018, 09:03:54 AM
Those of you doing retail or online arbitrage. What tools are you using to source inventory? I've found a few things on slickdeals like a $20 Yankee Candle that was $1.70 after tax at Walmart when I rang it up even though the display still said it was $15. One store nearby supposedly has 8 more in stock so I'm planning to stop by on the way home from work. Another store 50 miles away shows 39 in stock and even with shipping and Amazon fees I figure I'll net about $10 each. Hard to justify driving all that way if it's a bust, especially since I have to listed it as used - like new since I'm restricted from selling it in new condition. Got another one-off deal at Macy's with a $10 mail-in rebate.

I found brickseek.com which shows you current inventory for various deals at Walmart, Target, and Lowes. Thinking about signing up for the premium version which is $10 a month. I pass by a few Walmart stores on my way too and from work so it's not to hard to stop in and check if a deal is actually in stock.

Are you mostly finding things at big box retailers like Walmart, Target, etc. or are you finding other sources? There's a lot of stuff on clearance at Walmart, especially toys, but it's virtually all gated. I found one non-gated brand and sold a few. When I went to list another it was now gated but I did get auto approved.

I suggest you start with RA. You only need the Amazon Seller app to get started. Go around and scan everything. It will start to open your eyes on what's profitable and what's not. You need to check out a bunch of stores in your area - you will come up with a list of stores that are worthwhile.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on January 20, 2018, 02:13:51 PM
Well I found some Yankee Candles at Walmart that were only $1.70 as they were from last season (normally $20+). Looks like they still sell a few everyday even during the rest of the year. I was only able to find a couple in-stock after checking a few stores but my net margin should be about $11 on each, depending on shipping costs (edit: shipping turned out to be about $13 thus reducing actual profit to about $6). Another Walmart 50 miles away supposedly has 39 in stock but I'm not sure I want to risk driving all the way there only to find out they have none. www.brickseek.com is a neat resource for checking inventory at Walmart (and a few other stores) but so far it's been pretty hit or miss on accuracy. It's pretty nice seeing an item that's still marked $15.87 ring up as just $1.70. I'd never know that it was marked down so much without that resource.

Also picked up some 8-packs of Gillette Razors for $5.00 that are normally $25-30 but I'll have to sell those on eBay or maybe just use them myself. Too many counterfeits for Amazon to even allow you to request approval to list them.

Finally, purchased some bags that cost $85 but are selling for $150 on Amazon. I couldn't determine the exact sales rank because it was only showing the rank within a subcategory but they're also selling on eBay for about the same so I don't think I'm in any danger of having to sell at a loss. Judging by the number of reviews they must be selling a decent amount and Amazon isn't one of the sellers. The online retailer had 31 in stock but I decided 7 was enough. $2,635 is a bit more than I'm willing to tie up in inventory on a single item I'm not too familiar with. With shipping and fees I figure I should make about $30-35 on each one.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on January 29, 2018, 09:00:41 AM
How do you handle taxes for this? For anyone who has been doing this for more than a year, what does Amazon send you in terms of a 1099 or other tax documents? Do they report your revenue net of any fees or shipping that you purchased through them or just your gross sales (which would presumably include any shipping credits) leaving you to explain to the IRS that your COGS and expenses accounted for much of that.

I don't really want to go to the trouble of filing a Schedule C just to report that I lost $5 on about $600 in sales (probably more if I accounted for some mileage, to say nothing of my time). The extra $40-50 TurboTax would charge me is obviously not worth it since even if it was pure profit I'd barely pay that much in taxes.

So far 2018 is proving to be more profitable and I'm keeping better track of my income and expenses and I plan to get a business licenses and start quarterly filings with the state (and I suppose the federal government though I need to research the thresholds on that).


Edit: I just went looking to see when Amazon would send me any tax documents and it turns out their minimum threshold to send out at 1099-K is $20,000 in gross sales or 200 transactions. Since I didn't come close on either I don't think I need to worry about reporting any of this for tax purposes.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: SC93 on January 29, 2018, 10:12:53 AM
All platforms.... Paypal/Ebay/Amazon/Etsy/etc are required by the IRS to send out a 1099-k on anything over $20,000. But just because they don't send you the 1099-k does not mean you are exempt from filing on that money if you are running it as a business.

Here is what it is about..... the IRS let's you sell up to $20,000 of your personal stuff through those platforms. They figure if aunt Agnes died and you want to sell her stuff on Ebay then that is fine up to $20,000..... but if you have it structured for a business and they ever find out, you will pay. Now the $1 million dollar question is..... would they ever find out? A few they have, most they haven't.

I hate all forms of the government so that will probably be the only government thing I talk about for 2018 :)
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: L2 on January 29, 2018, 10:34:26 AM
I don't have time to read this whole thread so I don't know if it has already been said, but I just want to point out to beware of the state tax implications (both sales and income) of doing FBA. From a few google searches it's tough to find much online right now, but I have heard of two things that may be happening - state's subpoenaing Amazon to get seller info, then enforce tax and the other is requiring FBA sellers to file in every state that Amazon has a distribution center since inventory apparently cannot always be tracked. There was a VDA program to clear up any prior liabilities, but that unfortunately ended towards the end of 2017.

best of luck!
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on January 29, 2018, 01:59:54 PM
I don't have time to read this whole thread so I don't know if it has already been said, but I just want to point out to beware of the state tax implications (both sales and income) of doing FBA. From a few google searches it's tough to find much online right now, but I have heard of two things that may be happening - state's subpoenaing Amazon to get seller info, then enforce tax and the other is requiring FBA sellers to file in every state that Amazon has a distribution center since inventory apparently cannot always be tracked. There was a VDA program to clear up any prior liabilities, but that unfortunately ended towards the end of 2017.

best of luck!

Washington State basically forced Amazon to start collecting sales tax on behalf of third-party sellers. I suspect that will be the way it will start going in the future. While it can certainly be argued the sending inventory to a distribution center in another state creates a sales tax nexus there, it's just not realistic for hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of third-party sellers to try and collect and remit sales taxes in all those states. When Amazon and states offered amnesty last year there were very few who decided to participate.

For instance, if you enable inventory placement services you can ship a box with 100 widgets to a single Amazon warehouse. They will then redistribute that to other warehouse around the country to make it cheaper and faster to ship to customers. I don't think Amazon will tell you on every single transaction which warehouse shipped that item. Sales tax generally only applies if the buyer is in the same state as the warehouse.

Amazon could (relatively) easily start collecting and remitting sales tax on behalf of all third-party sellers using FBA. Once states realize that it is a lot easier to go after Amazon for millions of dollars in lost sales tax versus trying to track down tens of thousands of sellers to try and squeeze a few dollars from each, I think Amazon will start taking care of that. After all, they own the customer, the own the system, they control every aspect of it except for this one liability that they try and place back on the sellers.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: SC93 on January 29, 2018, 02:48:03 PM
You are so right Michael.... Amazon owns the customer, the system and every other aspect and that is why I don't sell on any of these platforms. If I wanted someone to tell me how to do things I'd just work for a company and get paid a salary. There isn't rally any more security in 'working for yourself' in this type of business than there is working for any business drawing a salary. Good post! :)
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Cwadda on January 29, 2018, 04:58:37 PM
How do you handle taxes for this? For anyone who has been doing this for more than a year, what does Amazon send you in terms of a 1099 or other tax documents? Do they report your revenue net of any fees or shipping that you purchased through them or just your gross sales (which would presumably include any shipping credits) leaving you to explain to the IRS that your COGS and expenses accounted for much of that.

I don't really want to go to the trouble of filing a Schedule C just to report that I lost $5 on about $600 in sales (probably more if I accounted for some mileage, to say nothing of my time). The extra $40-50 TurboTax would charge me is obviously not worth it since even if it was pure profit I'd barely pay that much in taxes.

So far 2018 is proving to be more profitable and I'm keeping better track of my income and expenses and I plan to get a business licenses and start quarterly filings with the state (and I suppose the federal government though I need to research the thresholds on that).


Edit: I just went looking to see when Amazon would send me any tax documents and it turns out their minimum threshold to send out at 1099-K is $20,000 in gross sales or 200 transactions. Since I didn't come close on either I don't think I need to worry about reporting any of this for tax purposes.

You only need to file sales tax for states in which you have a physical presence i.e. your residence. Amazon will remit these on your behalf if you have the settings configured properly (for Amazon to collect sales tax).
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on January 29, 2018, 05:09:37 PM
While there are some serious downsides to selling on Amazon, there is also the fact that you can put a product in front of tens, if not hundreds of millions of customers. Granted, only a tiny portion of that will ever see whatever product youíre trying to sell but itís like being able to get your product on the shelf of every Walmart and Target x10.

About 50% of product purchasing searches now start on Amazon. Thatís massive. Amazon Prime members (who typically have above-average household incomes) shop on Amazon at least weekly on average with a substantial percentage shopping daily.

Iím in the process of creating a brand with a related website but I plan to sell through Amazon. The website will have information and referral links but the products will be sold through Amazon. It just doesnít make sense to try and create an online storefront where I have to pay to drive traffic to it when Amazon traffic is already made up of people looking to buy things. I can send a box of widgets to Amazon at ridiculously low rates and they handle all the pick, pack, and shipping. Just the few items I sell now itís a hassle to pack them up and drop them off at the post office. Not to mention anything other than a book or very small item just kills you on shipping. I sent a 30lb box into Amazon for $12 and a 15lb box for about $6. Looking at one item Iíve got thatís pretty heavy it would cost me about $12 to ship it via USPS. But, if I stick a bunch of them in a box and send it to Amazon my total shipping cost will be about $7 including inbound shipping to Amazon and then their fees for pick, pack, and shipping. Plus, my labor for packing up a single box of items is minutes compared to what could easily add up to a couple of hours if I was fulfilling a dozen orders one at a time. With my own online storefront I'd have many hours in getting it setup and maintained plus monthly costs for that shopping cart. Amazon's 15% is probably a lot less than it would cost me to try and setup my own store unless I were doing massive volume.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: CareCPA on January 29, 2018, 05:11:27 PM
How do you handle taxes for this? For anyone who has been doing this for more than a year, what does Amazon send you in terms of a 1099 or other tax documents? Do they report your revenue net of any fees or shipping that you purchased through them or just your gross sales (which would presumably include any shipping credits) leaving you to explain to the IRS that your COGS and expenses accounted for much of that.

I don't really want to go to the trouble of filing a Schedule C just to report that I lost $5 on about $600 in sales (probably more if I accounted for some mileage, to say nothing of my time). The extra $40-50 TurboTax would charge me is obviously not worth it since even if it was pure profit I'd barely pay that much in taxes.

So far 2018 is proving to be more profitable and I'm keeping better track of my income and expenses and I plan to get a business licenses and start quarterly filings with the state (and I suppose the federal government though I need to research the thresholds on that).


Edit: I just went looking to see when Amazon would send me any tax documents and it turns out their minimum threshold to send out at 1099-K is $20,000 in gross sales or 200 transactions. Since I didn't come close on either I don't think I need to worry about reporting any of this for tax purposes.

You only need to file sales tax for states in which you have a physical presence i.e. your residence. Amazon will remit these on your behalf if you have the settings configured properly (for Amazon to collect sales tax).
Technically, you need to remit sales tax for any state you have Nexus. For many states, just having your inventory in an Amazon warehouse in that state creates Nexus.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: SC93 on January 29, 2018, 09:53:42 PM
I opened up a topic on another site and it was about Amazon. A very wealthy person that started on Amazon wrote about it. To make a very long post of what he said, short.... he called the Amazon of today a dirty whore's market. I wouldn't have thought of those words but I think it fits perfect.

He said exactly what I thought.... big money has come in and ruined it for the little guy, as always. He did say there is money to be made, just like I figured but it's just not what people think it is. Although they have spoiled it for most, I still think that if someone buys a boatload of something little... chap stick, lip gloss.... something like that and gets it for almost nothing and sells it for $2.99..... they could make a good profit over time. I'd do it but I don't want to have $50,000 tied up in chap stick for 3-5 years trying to make $200,000. :)

I guess I should have jumped on board years ago like I started to do.... but I didn't.... my loss.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on January 30, 2018, 06:45:25 AM
I opened up a topic on another site and it was about Amazon. A very wealthy person that started on Amazon wrote about it. To make a very long post of what he said, short.... he called the Amazon of today a dirty whore's market. I wouldn't have thought of those words but I think it fits perfect.

He said exactly what I thought.... big money has come in and ruined it for the little guy, as always. He did say there is money to be made, just like I figured but it's just not what people think it is. Although they have spoiled it for most, I still think that if someone buys a boatload of something little... chap stick, lip gloss.... something like that and gets it for almost nothing and sells it for $2.99..... they could make a good profit over time. I'd do it but I don't want to have $50,000 tied up in chap stick for 3-5 years trying to make $200,000. :)

I guess I should have jumped on board years ago like I started to do.... but I didn't.... my loss.

It would be pretty tough to make any money on a product selling for $2.99 even if you got it for practically free. The minimum cost for FBA fulfillment is a couple of dollars. Shipping it yourself might be cheaper but it probably still wouldn't be profitable which is why if you search for those little items they're generally sold as 5, 10, 20 packs so that it's not cost prohibitive on fees or shipping costs.

Just for kicks I found a single tube of chapstick selling on Amazon. At $3.99 with a COGS of $0.01 you would still lose money if you tried to sell it with Amazon FBA. Amazon does sell it themselves for $3.94 but only as an add-on item where they don't have to pay for shipping.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: SC93 on January 30, 2018, 10:01:06 AM
Now I don't know much about Amazon but I was talking to someone a month or 2 ago and that is why I used that example because she was saying she was doing what I was thinking.... did that confuse you? lol Anyway... she had bought something like that, I don't remember what it was, and is selling it for like $2.99, it might have been $3.99 but I'm thinking $2.99. She said she made a killing. She shipped it herself in a regular envelope for the cost of a stamp or 2. Dang, I'll try to remember who that was and talk to her again.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Cwadda on January 31, 2018, 08:27:24 AM
How do you handle taxes for this? For anyone who has been doing this for more than a year, what does Amazon send you in terms of a 1099 or other tax documents? Do they report your revenue net of any fees or shipping that you purchased through them or just your gross sales (which would presumably include any shipping credits) leaving you to explain to the IRS that your COGS and expenses accounted for much of that.

I don't really want to go to the trouble of filing a Schedule C just to report that I lost $5 on about $600 in sales (probably more if I accounted for some mileage, to say nothing of my time). The extra $40-50 TurboTax would charge me is obviously not worth it since even if it was pure profit I'd barely pay that much in taxes.

So far 2018 is proving to be more profitable and I'm keeping better track of my income and expenses and I plan to get a business licenses and start quarterly filings with the state (and I suppose the federal government though I need to research the thresholds on that).


Edit: I just went looking to see when Amazon would send me any tax documents and it turns out their minimum threshold to send out at 1099-K is $20,000 in gross sales or 200 transactions. Since I didn't come close on either I don't think I need to worry about reporting any of this for tax purposes.

You only need to file sales tax for states in which you have a physical presence i.e. your residence. Amazon will remit these on your behalf if you have the settings configured properly (for Amazon to collect sales tax).
Technically, you need to remit sales tax for any state you have Nexus. For many states, just having your inventory in an Amazon warehouse in that state creates Nexus.

I respectfully disagree with your interpretation. With Amazon FBA, your inventory gets automatically distributed to fulfillment centers around the country. In most cases, you have no idea where it even goes. Does this mean you need to obtain a sales tax permit for every state and file/remit 50 times per month? If the IRS expects FBA sellers to actually do this, they have a major mess on their hands.

Respectfully disagreed.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: L2 on January 31, 2018, 08:55:17 AM
How do you handle taxes for this? For anyone who has been doing this for more than a year, what does Amazon send you in terms of a 1099 or other tax documents? Do they report your revenue net of any fees or shipping that you purchased through them or just your gross sales (which would presumably include any shipping credits) leaving you to explain to the IRS that your COGS and expenses accounted for much of that.

I don't really want to go to the trouble of filing a Schedule C just to report that I lost $5 on about $600 in sales (probably more if I accounted for some mileage, to say nothing of my time). The extra $40-50 TurboTax would charge me is obviously not worth it since even if it was pure profit I'd barely pay that much in taxes.

So far 2018 is proving to be more profitable and I'm keeping better track of my income and expenses and I plan to get a business licenses and start quarterly filings with the state (and I suppose the federal government though I need to research the thresholds on that).


Edit: I just went looking to see when Amazon would send me any tax documents and it turns out their minimum threshold to send out at 1099-K is $20,000 in gross sales or 200 transactions. Since I didn't come close on either I don't think I need to worry about reporting any of this for tax purposes.

You only need to file sales tax for states in which you have a physical presence i.e. your residence. Amazon will remit these on your behalf if you have the settings configured properly (for Amazon to collect sales tax).
Technically, you need to remit sales tax for any state you have Nexus. For many states, just having your inventory in an Amazon warehouse in that state creates Nexus.

I respectfully disagree with your interpretation. With Amazon FBA, your inventory gets automatically distributed to fulfillment centers around the country. In most cases, you have no idea where it even goes. Does this mean you need to obtain a sales tax permit for every state and file/remit 50 times per month? If the IRS expects FBA sellers to actually do this, they have a major mess on their hands.

Respectfully disagreed.
You may not like it, but that interpretation is most definitely correct. Here is a notice I just received yesterday from a client. Also the IRS isn't involved at all. Each individual state is who will determine what they want done. I will add this client did have about 3.5m in Amazon sales (CA sales unknown at the moment), which I think might be more than most people here. But that might give you an idea of what revenue area the states might be beginning to target.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: CareCPA on January 31, 2018, 10:38:31 AM
How do you handle taxes for this? For anyone who has been doing this for more than a year, what does Amazon send you in terms of a 1099 or other tax documents? Do they report your revenue net of any fees or shipping that you purchased through them or just your gross sales (which would presumably include any shipping credits) leaving you to explain to the IRS that your COGS and expenses accounted for much of that.

I don't really want to go to the trouble of filing a Schedule C just to report that I lost $5 on about $600 in sales (probably more if I accounted for some mileage, to say nothing of my time). The extra $40-50 TurboTax would charge me is obviously not worth it since even if it was pure profit I'd barely pay that much in taxes.

So far 2018 is proving to be more profitable and I'm keeping better track of my income and expenses and I plan to get a business licenses and start quarterly filings with the state (and I suppose the federal government though I need to research the thresholds on that).


Edit: I just went looking to see when Amazon would send me any tax documents and it turns out their minimum threshold to send out at 1099-K is $20,000 in gross sales or 200 transactions. Since I didn't come close on either I don't think I need to worry about reporting any of this for tax purposes.

You only need to file sales tax for states in which you have a physical presence i.e. your residence. Amazon will remit these on your behalf if you have the settings configured properly (for Amazon to collect sales tax).
Technically, you need to remit sales tax for any state you have Nexus. For many states, just having your inventory in an Amazon warehouse in that state creates Nexus.

I respectfully disagree with your interpretation. With Amazon FBA, your inventory gets automatically distributed to fulfillment centers around the country. In most cases, you have no idea where it even goes. Does this mean you need to obtain a sales tax permit for every state and file/remit 50 times per month? If the IRS expects FBA sellers to actually do this, they have a major mess on their hands.

Respectfully disagreed.
As L2 noted, this is exactly what it means. You can pull an inventory report at any time to see what warehouses your inventory is in. State and Federal governments do not accept ignorance (especially willful ignorance) as an excuse for not following the rules.
Also, I don't believe Amazon has warehouses in all 50 states. 

Not to sound like a jerk here, but you can disagree all you want - it doesn't change the technical answer. You'll notice many FBA sellers wait to see if they receive a notice from the states for exactly this reason.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on January 31, 2018, 11:09:02 AM
How do you handle taxes for this? For anyone who has been doing this for more than a year, what does Amazon send you in terms of a 1099 or other tax documents? Do they report your revenue net of any fees or shipping that you purchased through them or just your gross sales (which would presumably include any shipping credits) leaving you to explain to the IRS that your COGS and expenses accounted for much of that.

I don't really want to go to the trouble of filing a Schedule C just to report that I lost $5 on about $600 in sales (probably more if I accounted for some mileage, to say nothing of my time). The extra $40-50 TurboTax would charge me is obviously not worth it since even if it was pure profit I'd barely pay that much in taxes.

So far 2018 is proving to be more profitable and I'm keeping better track of my income and expenses and I plan to get a business licenses and start quarterly filings with the state (and I suppose the federal government though I need to research the thresholds on that).


Edit: I just went looking to see when Amazon would send me any tax documents and it turns out their minimum threshold to send out at 1099-K is $20,000 in gross sales or 200 transactions. Since I didn't come close on either I don't think I need to worry about reporting any of this for tax purposes.

You only need to file sales tax for states in which you have a physical presence i.e. your residence. Amazon will remit these on your behalf if you have the settings configured properly (for Amazon to collect sales tax).
Technically, you need to remit sales tax for any state you have Nexus. For many states, just having your inventory in an Amazon warehouse in that state creates Nexus.

I respectfully disagree with your interpretation. With Amazon FBA, your inventory gets automatically distributed to fulfillment centers around the country. In most cases, you have no idea where it even goes. Does this mean you need to obtain a sales tax permit for every state and file/remit 50 times per month? If the IRS expects FBA sellers to actually do this, they have a major mess on their hands.

Respectfully disagreed.
As L2 noted, this is exactly what it means. You can pull an inventory report at any time to see what warehouses your inventory is in. State and Federal governments do not accept ignorance (especially willful ignorance) as an excuse for not following the rules.
Also, I don't believe Amazon has warehouses in all 50 states. 

Not to sound like a jerk here, but you can disagree all you want - it doesn't change the technical answer. You'll notice many FBA sellers wait to see if they receive a notice from the states for exactly this reason.

I think that most sellers will continue to fly under the radar of the states. I think there are 15-20 fulfillment centers in states with sales tax. So if you have inventory in any of those and then sell to someone in that state, even if it ships from another state, you're supposed to collect sales tax and remit it to the state.

Obviously this is a pretty complicated issue to handle on your own and there is at least one company, TaxJar that specializes in this (https://www.taxjar.com/guides/sales-tax-guide-for-amazon-fba/). Frankly though, unless you're selling tens of thousands of dollars a year (maybe hundreds of thousands of dollars a year) it probably doesn't make financial sense to be the one small seller that is trying to follow all the myriad sales tax rules.


I think the states are going to start going after Amazon directly soon rather than try to track down literally hundreds of thousands of individual small sellers to get a few bucks from each one. If you're doing a million plus in sales and not following the rules on sales tax then it's just a matter of time before someone comes after you. But in the long run, I think Amazon will be forced to handle this directly.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: CareCPA on January 31, 2018, 12:25:25 PM
How do you handle taxes for this? For anyone who has been doing this for more than a year, what does Amazon send you in terms of a 1099 or other tax documents? Do they report your revenue net of any fees or shipping that you purchased through them or just your gross sales (which would presumably include any shipping credits) leaving you to explain to the IRS that your COGS and expenses accounted for much of that.

I don't really want to go to the trouble of filing a Schedule C just to report that I lost $5 on about $600 in sales (probably more if I accounted for some mileage, to say nothing of my time). The extra $40-50 TurboTax would charge me is obviously not worth it since even if it was pure profit I'd barely pay that much in taxes.

So far 2018 is proving to be more profitable and I'm keeping better track of my income and expenses and I plan to get a business licenses and start quarterly filings with the state (and I suppose the federal government though I need to research the thresholds on that).


Edit: I just went looking to see when Amazon would send me any tax documents and it turns out their minimum threshold to send out at 1099-K is $20,000 in gross sales or 200 transactions. Since I didn't come close on either I don't think I need to worry about reporting any of this for tax purposes.

You only need to file sales tax for states in which you have a physical presence i.e. your residence. Amazon will remit these on your behalf if you have the settings configured properly (for Amazon to collect sales tax).
Technically, you need to remit sales tax for any state you have Nexus. For many states, just having your inventory in an Amazon warehouse in that state creates Nexus.

I respectfully disagree with your interpretation. With Amazon FBA, your inventory gets automatically distributed to fulfillment centers around the country. In most cases, you have no idea where it even goes. Does this mean you need to obtain a sales tax permit for every state and file/remit 50 times per month? If the IRS expects FBA sellers to actually do this, they have a major mess on their hands.

Respectfully disagreed.
As L2 noted, this is exactly what it means. You can pull an inventory report at any time to see what warehouses your inventory is in. State and Federal governments do not accept ignorance (especially willful ignorance) as an excuse for not following the rules.
Also, I don't believe Amazon has warehouses in all 50 states. 

Not to sound like a jerk here, but you can disagree all you want - it doesn't change the technical answer. You'll notice many FBA sellers wait to see if they receive a notice from the states for exactly this reason.

I think that most sellers will continue to fly under the radar of the states. I think there are 15-20 fulfillment centers in states with sales tax. So if you have inventory in any of those and then sell to someone in that state, even if it ships from another state, you're supposed to collect sales tax and remit it to the state.

Obviously this is a pretty complicated issue to handle on your own and there is at least one company, TaxJar that specializes in this (https://www.taxjar.com/guides/sales-tax-guide-for-amazon-fba/). Frankly though, unless you're selling tens of thousands of dollars a year (maybe hundreds of thousands of dollars a year) it probably doesn't make financial sense to be the one small seller that is trying to follow all the myriad sales tax rules.


I think the states are going to start going after Amazon directly soon rather than try to track down literally hundreds of thousands of individual small sellers to get a few bucks from each one. If you're doing a million plus in sales and not following the rules on sales tax then it's just a matter of time before someone comes after you. But in the long run, I think Amazon will be forced to handle this directly.
That's the solution that everyone except Amazon is hoping for - make Amazon collect and remit on the sellers' behalf. Especially since Amazon controls every part of the process.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: robartsd on January 31, 2018, 12:47:58 PM
That's the solution that everyone except Amazon is hoping for - make Amazon collect and remit on the sellers' behalf. Especially since Amazon controls every part of the process.
It seems like it would be easy for Amazon to collect and remit sales tax for all FBA sales in states where there are FBA warehouses - they already must collect and remit sales tax in these locations for any items sold by Amazon.com. It would be harder, but not impossible for Amazon to track which FBA sellers have inventory in which states to track any sales tax nexus created for a seller by FBA so as to avoid collecting sales tax on behalf of FBA sellers where it is not required. The only sticky issue I see is if the FBA seller also sells across state lines through other channels and FBA inventory creates a sales tax nexus for the seller that must be accounted for in those other channels. Does Amazon already handle sales tax for FBA sellers who are in states with sales tax that Amazon itself does not have a sales tax nexus in?
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Cwadda on February 02, 2018, 09:14:56 AM
How do you handle taxes for this? For anyone who has been doing this for more than a year, what does Amazon send you in terms of a 1099 or other tax documents? Do they report your revenue net of any fees or shipping that you purchased through them or just your gross sales (which would presumably include any shipping credits) leaving you to explain to the IRS that your COGS and expenses accounted for much of that.

I don't really want to go to the trouble of filing a Schedule C just to report that I lost $5 on about $600 in sales (probably more if I accounted for some mileage, to say nothing of my time). The extra $40-50 TurboTax would charge me is obviously not worth it since even if it was pure profit I'd barely pay that much in taxes.

So far 2018 is proving to be more profitable and I'm keeping better track of my income and expenses and I plan to get a business licenses and start quarterly filings with the state (and I suppose the federal government though I need to research the thresholds on that).


Edit: I just went looking to see when Amazon would send me any tax documents and it turns out their minimum threshold to send out at 1099-K is $20,000 in gross sales or 200 transactions. Since I didn't come close on either I don't think I need to worry about reporting any of this for tax purposes.

You only need to file sales tax for states in which you have a physical presence i.e. your residence. Amazon will remit these on your behalf if you have the settings configured properly (for Amazon to collect sales tax).
Technically, you need to remit sales tax for any state you have Nexus. For many states, just having your inventory in an Amazon warehouse in that state creates Nexus.

I respectfully disagree with your interpretation. With Amazon FBA, your inventory gets automatically distributed to fulfillment centers around the country. In most cases, you have no idea where it even goes. Does this mean you need to obtain a sales tax permit for every state and file/remit 50 times per month? If the IRS expects FBA sellers to actually do this, they have a major mess on their hands.

Respectfully disagreed.
As L2 noted, this is exactly what it means. You can pull an inventory report at any time to see what warehouses your inventory is in. State and Federal governments do not accept ignorance (especially willful ignorance) as an excuse for not following the rules.
Also, I don't believe Amazon has warehouses in all 50 states. 

Not to sound like a jerk here, but you can disagree all you want - it doesn't change the technical answer. You'll notice many FBA sellers wait to see if they receive a notice from the states for exactly this reason.

I think that most sellers will continue to fly under the radar of the states. I think there are 15-20 fulfillment centers in states with sales tax. So if you have inventory in any of those and then sell to someone in that state, even if it ships from another state, you're supposed to collect sales tax and remit it to the state.

Obviously this is a pretty complicated issue to handle on your own and there is at least one company, TaxJar that specializes in this (https://www.taxjar.com/guides/sales-tax-guide-for-amazon-fba/). Frankly though, unless you're selling tens of thousands of dollars a year (maybe hundreds of thousands of dollars a year) it probably doesn't make financial sense to be the one small seller that is trying to follow all the myriad sales tax rules.


I think the states are going to start going after Amazon directly soon rather than try to track down literally hundreds of thousands of individual small sellers to get a few bucks from each one. If you're doing a million plus in sales and not following the rules on sales tax then it's just a matter of time before someone comes after you. But in the long run, I think Amazon will be forced to handle this directly.

No thanks. I'm not going to spend thousands of dollars on Taxjar on the notion of fear that the IRS will come and get me for not filing sales tax in 20 different states. It's just not worth it. I don't sell millions of dollars worth. I am a ham and egger.

I am not going to file for sales tax permits in 20 states, with fees $150/each. I'm not going to pay a service $500/month to do it for me.

I'm going to continue filing and remitting sales tax in my home state for every item sold, every month. No more, no less.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: CareCPA on February 02, 2018, 09:52:55 AM
How do you handle taxes for this? For anyone who has been doing this for more than a year, what does Amazon send you in terms of a 1099 or other tax documents? Do they report your revenue net of any fees or shipping that you purchased through them or just your gross sales (which would presumably include any shipping credits) leaving you to explain to the IRS that your COGS and expenses accounted for much of that.

I don't really want to go to the trouble of filing a Schedule C just to report that I lost $5 on about $600 in sales (probably more if I accounted for some mileage, to say nothing of my time). The extra $40-50 TurboTax would charge me is obviously not worth it since even if it was pure profit I'd barely pay that much in taxes.

So far 2018 is proving to be more profitable and I'm keeping better track of my income and expenses and I plan to get a business licenses and start quarterly filings with the state (and I suppose the federal government though I need to research the thresholds on that).


Edit: I just went looking to see when Amazon would send me any tax documents and it turns out their minimum threshold to send out at 1099-K is $20,000 in gross sales or 200 transactions. Since I didn't come close on either I don't think I need to worry about reporting any of this for tax purposes.

You only need to file sales tax for states in which you have a physical presence i.e. your residence. Amazon will remit these on your behalf if you have the settings configured properly (for Amazon to collect sales tax).
Technically, you need to remit sales tax for any state you have Nexus. For many states, just having your inventory in an Amazon warehouse in that state creates Nexus.

I respectfully disagree with your interpretation. With Amazon FBA, your inventory gets automatically distributed to fulfillment centers around the country. In most cases, you have no idea where it even goes. Does this mean you need to obtain a sales tax permit for every state and file/remit 50 times per month? If the IRS expects FBA sellers to actually do this, they have a major mess on their hands.

Respectfully disagreed.
As L2 noted, this is exactly what it means. You can pull an inventory report at any time to see what warehouses your inventory is in. State and Federal governments do not accept ignorance (especially willful ignorance) as an excuse for not following the rules.
Also, I don't believe Amazon has warehouses in all 50 states. 

Not to sound like a jerk here, but you can disagree all you want - it doesn't change the technical answer. You'll notice many FBA sellers wait to see if they receive a notice from the states for exactly this reason.

I think that most sellers will continue to fly under the radar of the states. I think there are 15-20 fulfillment centers in states with sales tax. So if you have inventory in any of those and then sell to someone in that state, even if it ships from another state, you're supposed to collect sales tax and remit it to the state.

Obviously this is a pretty complicated issue to handle on your own and there is at least one company, TaxJar that specializes in this (https://www.taxjar.com/guides/sales-tax-guide-for-amazon-fba/). Frankly though, unless you're selling tens of thousands of dollars a year (maybe hundreds of thousands of dollars a year) it probably doesn't make financial sense to be the one small seller that is trying to follow all the myriad sales tax rules.


I think the states are going to start going after Amazon directly soon rather than try to track down literally hundreds of thousands of individual small sellers to get a few bucks from each one. If you're doing a million plus in sales and not following the rules on sales tax then it's just a matter of time before someone comes after you. But in the long run, I think Amazon will be forced to handle this directly.

No thanks. I'm not going to spend thousands of dollars on Taxjar on the notion of fear that the IRS will come and get me for not filing sales tax in 20 different states. It's just not worth it. I don't sell millions of dollars worth. I am a ham and egger.

I am not going to file for sales tax permits in 20 states, with fees $150/each. I'm not going to pay a service $500/month to do it for me.

I'm going to continue filing and remitting sales tax in my home state for every item sold, every month. No more, no less.
That is a business decision you have made, which you are entitled to do.
It's the part where you take the decision you have made, and try to turn it into fact for everyone else, that I'm having a hard time with.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: L2 on February 02, 2018, 10:46:25 AM
How do you handle taxes for this? For anyone who has been doing this for more than a year, what does Amazon send you in terms of a 1099 or other tax documents? Do they report your revenue net of any fees or shipping that you purchased through them or just your gross sales (which would presumably include any shipping credits) leaving you to explain to the IRS that your COGS and expenses accounted for much of that.

I don't really want to go to the trouble of filing a Schedule C just to report that I lost $5 on about $600 in sales (probably more if I accounted for some mileage, to say nothing of my time). The extra $40-50 TurboTax would charge me is obviously not worth it since even if it was pure profit I'd barely pay that much in taxes.

So far 2018 is proving to be more profitable and I'm keeping better track of my income and expenses and I plan to get a business licenses and start quarterly filings with the state (and I suppose the federal government though I need to research the thresholds on that).


Edit: I just went looking to see when Amazon would send me any tax documents and it turns out their minimum threshold to send out at 1099-K is $20,000 in gross sales or 200 transactions. Since I didn't come close on either I don't think I need to worry about reporting any of this for tax purposes.

You only need to file sales tax for states in which you have a physical presence i.e. your residence. Amazon will remit these on your behalf if you have the settings configured properly (for Amazon to collect sales tax).
Technically, you need to remit sales tax for any state you have Nexus. For many states, just having your inventory in an Amazon warehouse in that state creates Nexus.

I respectfully disagree with your interpretation. With Amazon FBA, your inventory gets automatically distributed to fulfillment centers around the country. In most cases, you have no idea where it even goes. Does this mean you need to obtain a sales tax permit for every state and file/remit 50 times per month? If the IRS expects FBA sellers to actually do this, they have a major mess on their hands.

Respectfully disagreed.
As L2 noted, this is exactly what it means. You can pull an inventory report at any time to see what warehouses your inventory is in. State and Federal governments do not accept ignorance (especially willful ignorance) as an excuse for not following the rules.
Also, I don't believe Amazon has warehouses in all 50 states. 

Not to sound like a jerk here, but you can disagree all you want - it doesn't change the technical answer. You'll notice many FBA sellers wait to see if they receive a notice from the states for exactly this reason.

I think that most sellers will continue to fly under the radar of the states. I think there are 15-20 fulfillment centers in states with sales tax. So if you have inventory in any of those and then sell to someone in that state, even if it ships from another state, you're supposed to collect sales tax and remit it to the state.

Obviously this is a pretty complicated issue to handle on your own and there is at least one company, TaxJar that specializes in this (https://www.taxjar.com/guides/sales-tax-guide-for-amazon-fba/). Frankly though, unless you're selling tens of thousands of dollars a year (maybe hundreds of thousands of dollars a year) it probably doesn't make financial sense to be the one small seller that is trying to follow all the myriad sales tax rules.


I think the states are going to start going after Amazon directly soon rather than try to track down literally hundreds of thousands of individual small sellers to get a few bucks from each one. If you're doing a million plus in sales and not following the rules on sales tax then it's just a matter of time before someone comes after you. But in the long run, I think Amazon will be forced to handle this directly.


I'm going to continue filing and remitting sales tax in my home state for every item sold, every month. No more, no less.

Just as an FYI, if you are doing this, then you most likely have a refund opportunity. See, accountants do have value :)

 Also, to be the bearer of bad news again, look up South Dakota vs. Wayfair. The way in that the nexus laws are shaped is most likely going to change from having to file where you have a physical requirement to having to file in a state where you have X number of sales and/or X number of transactions.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: L2 on February 02, 2018, 10:47:10 AM
How do you handle taxes for this? For anyone who has been doing this for more than a year, what does Amazon send you in terms of a 1099 or other tax documents? Do they report your revenue net of any fees or shipping that you purchased through them or just your gross sales (which would presumably include any shipping credits) leaving you to explain to the IRS that your COGS and expenses accounted for much of that.

I don't really want to go to the trouble of filing a Schedule C just to report that I lost $5 on about $600 in sales (probably more if I accounted for some mileage, to say nothing of my time). The extra $40-50 TurboTax would charge me is obviously not worth it since even if it was pure profit I'd barely pay that much in taxes.

So far 2018 is proving to be more profitable and I'm keeping better track of my income and expenses and I plan to get a business licenses and start quarterly filings with the state (and I suppose the federal government though I need to research the thresholds on that).


Edit: I just went looking to see when Amazon would send me any tax documents and it turns out their minimum threshold to send out at 1099-K is $20,000 in gross sales or 200 transactions. Since I didn't come close on either I don't think I need to worry about reporting any of this for tax purposes.

You only need to file sales tax for states in which you have a physical presence i.e. your residence. Amazon will remit these on your behalf if you have the settings configured properly (for Amazon to collect sales tax).
Technically, you need to remit sales tax for any state you have Nexus. For many states, just having your inventory in an Amazon warehouse in that state creates Nexus.

I respectfully disagree with your interpretation. With Amazon FBA, your inventory gets automatically distributed to fulfillment centers around the country. In most cases, you have no idea where it even goes. Does this mean you need to obtain a sales tax permit for every state and file/remit 50 times per month? If the IRS expects FBA sellers to actually do this, they have a major mess on their hands.

Respectfully disagreed.
As L2 noted, this is exactly what it means. You can pull an inventory report at any time to see what warehouses your inventory is in. State and Federal governments do not accept ignorance (especially willful ignorance) as an excuse for not following the rules.
Also, I don't believe Amazon has warehouses in all 50 states. 

Not to sound like a jerk here, but you can disagree all you want - it doesn't change the technical answer. You'll notice many FBA sellers wait to see if they receive a notice from the states for exactly this reason.

I think that most sellers will continue to fly under the radar of the states. I think there are 15-20 fulfillment centers in states with sales tax. So if you have inventory in any of those and then sell to someone in that state, even if it ships from another state, you're supposed to collect sales tax and remit it to the state.

Obviously this is a pretty complicated issue to handle on your own and there is at least one company, TaxJar that specializes in this (https://www.taxjar.com/guides/sales-tax-guide-for-amazon-fba/). Frankly though, unless you're selling tens of thousands of dollars a year (maybe hundreds of thousands of dollars a year) it probably doesn't make financial sense to be the one small seller that is trying to follow all the myriad sales tax rules.


I think the states are going to start going after Amazon directly soon rather than try to track down literally hundreds of thousands of individual small sellers to get a few bucks from each one. If you're doing a million plus in sales and not following the rules on sales tax then it's just a matter of time before someone comes after you. But in the long run, I think Amazon will be forced to handle this directly.


I'm going to continue filing and remitting sales tax in my home state for every item sold, every month. No more, no less.

Just as an FYI, if you are doing this, then you most likely have a refund opportunity. See, accountants do have value :)

 Also, to be the bearer of bad news again, look up South Dakota vs. Wayfair. The way in that the nexus laws are shaped is most likely going to change from having to file where you have a physical presence to having to file in states where you have X number of sales and/or X number of transactions.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Cwadda on February 03, 2018, 10:33:34 AM
How do you handle taxes for this? For anyone who has been doing this for more than a year, what does Amazon send you in terms of a 1099 or other tax documents? Do they report your revenue net of any fees or shipping that you purchased through them or just your gross sales (which would presumably include any shipping credits) leaving you to explain to the IRS that your COGS and expenses accounted for much of that.

I don't really want to go to the trouble of filing a Schedule C just to report that I lost $5 on about $600 in sales (probably more if I accounted for some mileage, to say nothing of my time). The extra $40-50 TurboTax would charge me is obviously not worth it since even if it was pure profit I'd barely pay that much in taxes.

So far 2018 is proving to be more profitable and I'm keeping better track of my income and expenses and I plan to get a business licenses and start quarterly filings with the state (and I suppose the federal government though I need to research the thresholds on that).


Edit: I just went looking to see when Amazon would send me any tax documents and it turns out their minimum threshold to send out at 1099-K is $20,000 in gross sales or 200 transactions. Since I didn't come close on either I don't think I need to worry about reporting any of this for tax purposes.

You only need to file sales tax for states in which you have a physical presence i.e. your residence. Amazon will remit these on your behalf if you have the settings configured properly (for Amazon to collect sales tax).
Technically, you need to remit sales tax for any state you have Nexus. For many states, just having your inventory in an Amazon warehouse in that state creates Nexus.

I respectfully disagree with your interpretation. With Amazon FBA, your inventory gets automatically distributed to fulfillment centers around the country. In most cases, you have no idea where it even goes. Does this mean you need to obtain a sales tax permit for every state and file/remit 50 times per month? If the IRS expects FBA sellers to actually do this, they have a major mess on their hands.

Respectfully disagreed.
As L2 noted, this is exactly what it means. You can pull an inventory report at any time to see what warehouses your inventory is in. State and Federal governments do not accept ignorance (especially willful ignorance) as an excuse for not following the rules.
Also, I don't believe Amazon has warehouses in all 50 states. 

Not to sound like a jerk here, but you can disagree all you want - it doesn't change the technical answer. You'll notice many FBA sellers wait to see if they receive a notice from the states for exactly this reason.

I think that most sellers will continue to fly under the radar of the states. I think there are 15-20 fulfillment centers in states with sales tax. So if you have inventory in any of those and then sell to someone in that state, even if it ships from another state, you're supposed to collect sales tax and remit it to the state.

Obviously this is a pretty complicated issue to handle on your own and there is at least one company, TaxJar that specializes in this (https://www.taxjar.com/guides/sales-tax-guide-for-amazon-fba/). Frankly though, unless you're selling tens of thousands of dollars a year (maybe hundreds of thousands of dollars a year) it probably doesn't make financial sense to be the one small seller that is trying to follow all the myriad sales tax rules.


I think the states are going to start going after Amazon directly soon rather than try to track down literally hundreds of thousands of individual small sellers to get a few bucks from each one. If you're doing a million plus in sales and not following the rules on sales tax then it's just a matter of time before someone comes after you. But in the long run, I think Amazon will be forced to handle this directly.

No thanks. I'm not going to spend thousands of dollars on Taxjar on the notion of fear that the IRS will come and get me for not filing sales tax in 20 different states. It's just not worth it. I don't sell millions of dollars worth. I am a ham and egger.

I am not going to file for sales tax permits in 20 states, with fees $150/each. I'm not going to pay a service $500/month to do it for me.

I'm going to continue filing and remitting sales tax in my home state for every item sold, every month. No more, no less.
That is a business decision you have made, which you are entitled to do.
It's the part where you take the decision you have made, and try to turn it into fact for everyone else, that I'm having a hard time with.

Nope, people need to consult a CPA like yourself or a lawyer for counsel. Not my place to make decisions for people and spread misinformation.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: doompatrol on February 07, 2018, 09:35:02 AM
Amazon FBA is a great option for people who are wanting to start with e-commerce. It has definitely gotten tougher lately as more people see the "gold rush" happening, but if you have some creativity and patience it can definitely pay off.

I think the main difference now is you have to do some sort of alteration/branding on a product to make it stand out. Before you could go to alibaba, find a product for cheap, and essentially flip it on Amazon, but that is no longer the case. Now it requires having your own design, putting branding, or finding a separate use for a product in a new niche.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on February 08, 2018, 10:34:39 AM
Well I found some Yankee Candles at Walmart that were only $1.70 as they were from last season (normally $20+). Looks like they still sell a few everyday even during the rest of the year. I was only able to find a couple in-stock after checking a few stores but my net margin should be about $11 on each, depending on shipping costs (edit: shipping turned out to be about $13 thus reducing actual profit to about $6). Another Walmart 50 miles away supposedly has 39 in stock but I'm not sure I want to risk driving all the way there only to find out they have none. www.brickseek.com is a neat resource for checking inventory at Walmart (and a few other stores) but so far it's been pretty hit or miss on accuracy. It's pretty nice seeing an item that's still marked $15.87 ring up as just $1.70. I'd never know that it was marked down so much without that resource.

Also picked up some 8-packs of Gillette Razors for $5.00 that are normally $25-30 but I'll have to sell those on eBay or maybe just use them myself. Too many counterfeits for Amazon to even allow you to request approval to list them.

Finally, purchased some bags that cost $85 but are selling for $150 on Amazon. I couldn't determine the exact sales rank because it was only showing the rank within a subcategory but they're also selling on eBay for about the same so I don't think I'm in any danger of having to sell at a loss. Judging by the number of reviews they must be selling a decent amount and Amazon isn't one of the sellers. The online retailer had 31 in stock but I decided 7 was enough. $2,635 is a bit more than I'm willing to tie up in inventory on a single item I'm not too familiar with. With shipping and fees I figure I should make about $30-35 on each one.

I've since bought about 10 of those candles at various Walmart's though I haven't made the hour-trip to try and buy another 30+ that are in-stock at another one. So far I've sold 6 of them for about $25 each including four to one buyer. That was really nice as it cost $12 to ship one but only $20 to ship four. I guess someone really liked that particular candle and wanted to stock up since it's seasonal and now out of stock. I could increase my profit margin by sending it in to FBA but I would need to buy some cardboard boxes to fit them, plus labels and get everything packed up nice and neat so Amazon doesn't break them. Buying the boxes would only be cost effective if I went to that other store and they actually had 30+ in stock. A 50-pack of boxes that would fit them would work out to about $0.80 each with shipping (plus I'd need a lot more bubble wrap). I know that based on the last few years history from CamelCamelCamel that sales drop off to just a few per month around April/May and there's already several FBA sellers that have a total of 10-15 in stock. The might decided to drop the price from $25 to $15-20 to get rid of their inventory and I'd be stuck with some storage costs waiting for them to sell. Still, if I have any reason to head up that way soon I'll definitely buy whatever's left. At $2 each when they sell for $25+ new it's hard not to make money.

Those razors sure sold nice and quick on eBay and shipping is a lot easier, just pop it in envelop with a bit of bubble wrap for good measure. I'd forgot that Paypal takes about a 5% cut in addition to the eBay fee. Still, works out to a bit less than Amazon.

Sent 4 bags into FBA and already have two pending sales. They're all still in reserved status as I sent all of them to a warehouse in TX and now they're being redistributed around the country. I just sent the other 3 in this morning. It was pretty nice that they came in the original boxes straight from the manufacturer so I didn't have to do any prep at all, they even had barcode stickers on the outside of the boxes. I wish I had known they shipped four to a box I would have just order 8 instead of 7. I can tell the online seller I purchased them from simply opened the box, took out one of the boxes inside and resealed it. Shipping an 18lbs box vs a 14lbs one to Amazon would have been basically the same cost and I calculate I'll make about $42 on each one after all fees.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: anonymouscow on February 13, 2018, 07:56:49 PM
I am trying Amazon FBA, not going so great. Mostly I am buying things on clearance at Walmart. It seems that by the time my items ship to Amazon the price has dropped by 1/3. I am thinking maybe the same items are being clearanced at multiple stores and it drives the price down. Any idea if I should leave the price higher in hopes that it will rise in the future?
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: SC93 on February 13, 2018, 08:34:33 PM
I think that ship has sailed.....
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on February 13, 2018, 09:31:54 PM
I am trying Amazon FBA, not going so great. Mostly I am buying things on clearance at Walmart. It seems that by the time my items ship to Amazon the price has dropped by 1/3. I am thinking maybe the same items are being clearanced at multiple stores and it drives the price down. Any idea if I should leave the price higher in hopes that it will rise in the future?

So far the only things I've had success with have been very deep discounts.

Check camelcamelcamel.com to see the price history. If you buy something for $10 and it normally sells for $25-30 you're probably ok. If it fluctuates from $15-30 then you may end up selling it at a loss or minimal profit or holding it for a few months.

The only stuff I've bought at Walmart that's been profitable was some candles that were still labeled as being $15 but rang up as $2 or less. Same with some razor blades that were at a very deep discount of $5 vs. a normal price of $20+.

Monthly storage fees and eventually long-term storage fees might eat up any potential profits from keeping the price high. Also it ties up your cash if you've got inventory sitting there for months hoping to get full price rather than discounting it to sell quickly and buy new inventory. Once again, camelcamelcamel can help you determine if there are recent or seasonal trends in pricing and sales.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: L2 on February 14, 2018, 08:06:38 AM
I'm sure most of you received the email mentioned here. Protip: Do not listen to Funky Monkey. RI isn't inquiring for no reason.
https://sellercentral.amazon.com/forums/t/sales-tax-rhode-island/359506

Hopefully you all are under a lot of these thresholds being set by states. RI is 5k and CA is 10k FYI. The client whose notice from CA I shared on here a few weeks ago might end up having to go out of business because he can't afford to pay the tax he owes. There is no statute of limitations for failure to file. Charging and remitting sales tax in some of your higher-risk states (if your accountant deems you have any) isn't really an additional cost to you. It might result in a little bit lower sales, but the cost is being passed on to the customer. Monthly sales tax returns in a few states really isn't really some big burden. It can be done in a half hour. If you get caught, you can't go back and charge it to the customer retroactively, its gotta come out of your own pocket.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: nyorker on February 18, 2018, 11:08:29 PM
Hello all!

I just want to say thank you for the wealth of information that I have found in this forum, but thank you also for this specific topic. Recently (about 3 weeks) I started looking into FBA and noticed that most people in FB groups all they talk about is PL. For me I believe plunging 3-4K into a product that already sells by different brands is not feasable, all your doing is adding your logo. I think that if you were to have something unique, then yes, but because of this I think that wholesale is a great option to start.

My question is, is it still worth it in 2018 to start with FBA? I've read tons of people around the web where they are leaving the platform, saying is saturated etc etc.. Also I've noticed that some other programs have come to light to offer something thaat IL offers, such as fetcher (same people from JS) and I was looking to see if some of you can do an updated post with the software that you guys use.

@RFord617  Can you tell us what software/tools are you using to make it efficient?

@hodedofome  PriceMaster is very close to where I live, so I could probably save the shipping part. Can you tell me if its still worth purchasing from them? Can they provide you with a spreadsheet with the UPC?? Would their invoice still ungate me to some of the sections if I am starting? Is it possible to make between 20-30% ROI? I will be doing this with a LLC and resale certificates.

Thank you.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on February 19, 2018, 09:33:15 AM
Year to date my sales have been about $1,100 with most of that through Amazon but maybe 10-15% through eBay when something was a good deal but restricted on Amazon. My initial cost of goods sold (COGS) was a bit of $400 but once I add in selling fees and shipping my total COGS was about $750. So my gross profit has been $350 for an average gross margin of about 32%. If I look at my return on investment for just the purchase price, not including the fees and shipping which are almost entirely incurred when something sells, it's 84%.

I've got three higher-priced items that are just about to come in stock through FBA and I have the buy box already. The first four sold in less than a week and though there's no sales ranking, I'd estimate monthly sales at about 10-15 based on what I've seen the other few sellers doing plus myself. So, likely I'll sell through those by the end of the month which will bump up my gross profit to $470 while lowering my profit margin slightly to about 30%.

Out of that $470 though I've probably spent another $30-40 in shipping supplies and if I were tracking my mileage I'd probably have some additional expenses there (not much though as I can mail things by just going slightly out of my way to work, same with most sourcing trips). Not to mention quite a few hours here and there either looking through stores or online and then the time spent actually packaging and shipping things either individually or to FBA.


I'd definitely like to move into wholesale but I've been trying to bootstrap with about $500 to start so I'm sticking with retail and online arbitrage for the time being to build up a bit more capital and experience before trying to start setting up manufacturer or wholesale sourcing relationships. I think there's still plenty of opportunity. Keep in mind that Amazon sales totaled almost $200 billion last year and roughly half of that was from third-party sellers. So yes, there's still plenty of room in a market with close to $100 billion in sales, even with millions of sellers operating. The sooner you get started the sooner you can start building up experience and are more likely to get access to restricted brands and categories. I've been approved for a few random brands just by requesting it without needing an invoice or letter from the manufacturer. The bottom line is that Amazon wants customers to have a good experience. If you do a good job they will let you sell more things. They don't want to let everyone start selling everything right away because there's too much risk of fraud and counterfeiting.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Cwadda on February 19, 2018, 12:06:56 PM
I'm sure most of you received the email mentioned here. Protip: Do not listen to Funky Monkey. RI isn't inquiring for no reason.
https://sellercentral.amazon.com/forums/t/sales-tax-rhode-island/359506

Hopefully you all are under a lot of these thresholds being set by states. RI is 5k and CA is 10k FYI. The client whose notice from CA I shared on here a few weeks ago might end up having to go out of business because he can't afford to pay the tax he owes. There is no statute of limitations for failure to file. Charging and remitting sales tax in some of your higher-risk states (if your accountant deems you have any) isn't really an additional cost to you. It might result in a little bit lower sales, but the cost is being passed on to the customer. Monthly sales tax returns in a few states really isn't really some big burden. It can be done in a half hour. If you get caught, you can't go back and charge it to the customer retroactively, its gotta come out of your own pocket.

I asked my accountant, btw.  His response:

Quote
My understanding about the "sales tax" issue - you only have to collect and remit sales taxes to the State of CT for State of CT residents.

Please note - The Supreme Court is relooking into this issue and they may decide that all sales regardless what state they are from sales taxes will have to be collected.

My guess is that if the SC decides that Amazon sellers need to file and remit in all states, I see Amazon collecting and remitting on behalf of 3rd party. Amazon already does this for itself, and certainly has the resources to easily do it for others. Too many resellers would leave the platform, and with 3rd parties making up half of all Amazon revenue, it'd be quite a bit to lose.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: L2 on February 19, 2018, 06:01:04 PM
I'm sure most of you received the email mentioned here. Protip: Do not listen to Funky Monkey. RI isn't inquiring for no reason.
https://sellercentral.amazon.com/forums/t/sales-tax-rhode-island/359506

Hopefully you all are under a lot of these thresholds being set by states. RI is 5k and CA is 10k FYI. The client whose notice from CA I shared on here a few weeks ago might end up having to go out of business because he can't afford to pay the tax he owes. There is no statute of limitations for failure to file. Charging and remitting sales tax in some of your higher-risk states (if your accountant deems you have any) isn't really an additional cost to you. It might result in a little bit lower sales, but the cost is being passed on to the customer. Monthly sales tax returns in a few states really isn't really some big burden. It can be done in a half hour. If you get caught, you can't go back and charge it to the customer retroactively, its gotta come out of your own pocket.

I asked my accountant, btw.  His response:

Quote
My understanding about the "sales tax" issue - you only have to collect and remit sales taxes to the State of CT for State of CT residents.

Please note - The Supreme Court is relooking into this issue and they may decide that all sales regardless what state they are from sales taxes will have to be collected.

That's correct and maybe something I should have clarified. *IF* you have nexus in a state, you should be collecting and remitting sales tax to the state that the customer resides in. Thats why I said you probably have a refund opportunity if you are paying sales tax to Ohio for all of your sales.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on February 22, 2018, 12:51:08 PM
Hello all!

I just want to say thank you for the wealth of information that I have found in this forum, but thank you also for this specific topic. Recently (about 3 weeks) I started looking into FBA and noticed that most people in FB groups all they talk about is PL. For me I believe plunging 3-4K into a product that already sells by different brands is not feasable, all your doing is adding your logo. I think that if you were to have something unique, then yes, but because of this I think that wholesale is a great option to start.

My question is, is it still worth it in 2018 to start with FBA? I've read tons of people around the web where they are leaving the platform, saying is saturated etc etc.. Also I've noticed that some other programs have come to light to offer something thaat IL offers, such as fetcher (same people from JS) and I was looking to see if some of you can do an updated post with the software that you guys use.

@RFord617  Can you tell us what software/tools are you using to make it efficient?

@hodedofome  PriceMaster is very close to where I live, so I could probably save the shipping part. Can you tell me if its still worth purchasing from them? Can they provide you with a spreadsheet with the UPC?? Would their invoice still ungate me to some of the sections if I am starting? Is it possible to make between 20-30% ROI? I will be doing this with a LLC and resale certificates.

Thank you.

I started in March of 2017 with $300 in mostly bad clearance items. A few worked out, a few I still have in my garage waiting to be sold on eBay lol. I didn't know anything about restrictions so I bought Lego, Little Tykes, etc.

I read everything I could, got involved with some facebook groups, scanned like crazy, signed up for Tactical Arbitrage, paid $2k for The Wholesale Formula class which I haven't used yet, worked as much as I could with 3 little kids and a full time job. I eventually invested $12k from my savings and I believe my total profit for 2017 is around $25k. Peak sales I've done for a 30 day period is $28k in the 4th quarter of 2017. Right now my sales are around $12-15k per month, with profit being around $3-5k per month. My sales didn't really ramp up until mid summer/early fall of 2017. Getting ungated in as many categories and brands as possible is essential.

I'd say my sales are about 50% coming from OA. I haven't really used Tactical Arbitrage lately, but I need to get back into it. I found an online brand that had some decent selling already going on at Amazon, but the few sellers who sold the product didn't keep it in stock. They'd buy 3 at a time and sell out quick. I could tell this from the Keepa graphs. So I started with 3, then bought 5, then bought 10, then 25, and finally settled on 50-75 per month from 1 item. This item largely has no competition. Had they just ordered enough to test the market, they would have found it was far deeper than they ever imagined. I buy it for $15, sell it for $35, make $9 on each item for a 60% ROI. It sells 50-75 per month so I'm making about $500 a month just from 1 item. All of the ranks for each variation are over 100k in home & kitchen, and some are over 1 million in rank. You can't always trust the rank, and if you're the only seller it can still be worth it.

Since the fall I decided to list all the different variations of this item, as well as similar items from the same website. So I'm moving away from just selling items that are already listed, to creating my own listings for items that haven't been sold before. Although the other variations don't sell as well, when you combine the other colors and sizes I figure I'm making about $1,500 in profit each month. So I setup the inventory alerts in seller central, and when I get to a 2 week supply I place an order for more. It comes to my house, I prep it and send it off. Replens are awesome. As time allows I'm ordering test buys for other products from this website, and creating new listings.

I found another product, in the beauty category, selling brand new on the shelf at a grocery store for $10. It sells (well) on Amazon for $30-45, depending on the competition. ROI can be anywhere from 70-170%. Rank is 25-40k in beauty. This product is apparently difficult to find these days, but it still sold in some stores and more can be ordered. At first I was clearing the shelf, but then eventually spoke to the manager about buying in bulk. She can order as much as I want. One of the orders accidentally included the invoice from the distributor in the box. I was super excited and called the distributor about opening up an account. They said they weren't interested. I don't know why people don't like taking other people's money sometimes. In any case, even paying retail price this one product is responsible for 20% of my sales and at least 25% of my profits.

So 1 RA replen and 1 OA replen website are bringing in $8k in sales and $2-3k in profit per month. Any clearance items I find are gravy after that. I've got basically a 'floor' of replens I can count on to make at least $2k per month. At this point I'm listing new products from that website, and slowly working on opening up wholesale accounts. Wholesale is going slower than I'd like, but I'm not giving up. There's a guy locally who knew my dad and got me to sell his bbq spices on Amazon. They are starting out slow but I'm running ads on them and trying to get reviews.

From the start I imagined me learning the business doing RA and OA, using the profits from that to get into wholesale, and finally using the profits from wholesale to get into private label. Once you know how to get a product ranked high on Amazon, PL offers the best profit opportunities IMO. Even if there's already competition, if you can figure out the listing, advertising and brand awareness/brand building part, you can get stuff to sell.

I do RA shopping during lunch during the week, prep 2 evenings per week and on Saturday. All in all probably putting in 10-20 hours per week.

In answer to your question, Pricemaster and EE Distribution is still good for getting ungated in grocery and toys. They don't provide an excel spreadsheet. Don't expect to make any money, just hope you can break-even. Consider it an investment so you can make more money from being ungated. Even if you're starting out, if you have a legit invoice and the business info of your seller account matches the business info on the invoice, the invoice will be accepted.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on February 26, 2018, 04:52:50 PM

I started in March of 2017 with $300 in mostly bad clearance items. A few worked out, a few I still have in my garage waiting to be sold on eBay lol. I didn't know anything about restrictions so I bought Lego, Little Tykes, etc.

I'd say my sales are about 50% coming from OA. I haven't really used Tactical Arbitrage lately, but I need to get back into it. I found an online brand that had some decent selling already going on at Amazon, but the few sellers who sold the product didn't keep it in stock. They'd buy 3 at a time and sell out quick. I could tell this from the Keepa graphs. So I started with 3, then bought 5, then bought 10, then 25, and finally settled on 50-75 per month from 1 item. This item largely has no competition. Had they just ordered enough to test the market, they would have found it was far deeper than they ever imagined. I buy it for $15, sell it for $35, make $9 on each item for a 60% ROI. It sells 50-75 per month so I'm making about $500 a month just from 1 item. All of the ranks for each variation are over 100k in home & kitchen, and some are over 1 million in rank. You can't always trust the rank, and if you're the only seller it can still be worth it.


How did you initially find this website/product? Was it through one of these tools or a deal aggregator website (i.e. slickdeals) or just browsing through Amazon listings and then trying to find another source?

I've had a couple of small wins with RA/OA but I would obviously like to find a replenishable product, even if it had a much lower profit margin just to provide some consistency. 

Most of my gross profit margins (profit after deducting all selling/FBA fees and cost of goods sold - not including miscellaneous shipping supplies or other overhead) have been around 20 - 60% with actual profit per item ranging from $1.70 to $40+. Those $40+ per item profits are nice but it's higher risk buying a $80 item to sell for $150 as some of these have had no sales rank so I'm just going off how many recent reviews have been left (recent reviews means someone must be buying it and very few people leave reviews so a few in the last month or two is a good sign) and if there are any eBay sales.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on February 27, 2018, 08:56:49 AM
How did you initially find this website/product? Was it through one of these tools or a deal aggregator website (i.e. slickdeals) or just browsing through Amazon listings and then trying to find another source?

I've had a couple of small wins with RA/OA but I would obviously like to find a replenishable product, even if it had a much lower profit margin just to provide some consistency. 

Most of my gross profit margins (profit after deducting all selling/FBA fees and cost of goods sold - not including miscellaneous shipping supplies or other overhead) have been around 20 - 60% with actual profit per item ranging from $1.70 to $40+. Those $40+ per item profits are nice but it's higher risk buying a $80 item to sell for $150 as some of these have had no sales rank so I'm just going off how many recent reviews have been left (recent reviews means someone must be buying it and very few people leave reviews so a few in the last month or two is a good sign) and if there are any eBay sales.

My first replen product I'm honestly not sure how I found it. I had used it before in my house, and perhaps I just searched for it on Amazon out of curiosity? I know I scanned the brand's site with Tactical Arbitrage but didn't come up with anything. I may have manually searched out the product after the scan, compared the price then thought I had a winner after looking at the Keepa chart. There were only a few products from this site listed on Amazon, and it took me several months to realize I needed to be working on listing every product they sell, not just the ones who are already selling.

To give an example, look at Toys R Us. Toys R us sells toys that you can get anywhere else. But they also have their 'exclusive' line that you can only find at Toys R Us. I saw a few of those exclusive products for sale on Amazon, recognized a good deal, and jumped on the listing. Only a couple other sellers were doing the same thing, so competition was low. Then I decided to go through the entire Toys R Us site and find every exclusive product they sold and listed those on Amazon for the first time. There's zero competition on those listings, so I get every sale.

For the beauty product that is a replen, I believe I initially found that while scanning the site with Tactical Arbitrage, but then went into the physical store to see if it was really as good as I thought. Then I scanned all the products on that shelf to see if there was anything else I was missing. It was in a category I wasn't really thinking about before. So I have OA helping me out with RA ideas, and RA (or my own personal purchase history) helping me out with OA ideas.

Getting ungated in beauty has really helped. I can go into a beauty supply store and head straight to the clearance section. More often than not, I can find something for $5-10, has good reviews, and no current listings. It's out of stock, probably been discontinued, which is why it's on clearance. At that point I can pretty much list that skin cream or shampoo for whatever I want, and it'll sell. Those women who used it before love it, and are willing to pay up to get it again. It might have retailed for $10-30 originally, I get it for $5-10 and sell it for $50+. It's not something I can depend on every week (unless I was traveling every day hitting up stores state-wide) but it's a nice bonus on top of the replens.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Roland of Gilead on February 27, 2018, 09:05:51 AM
Curious how the performance of buying Amazon stock itself with one's startup capital would compare to the return on investment of setting up a Amazon store...
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on February 27, 2018, 12:31:24 PM
Curious how the performance of buying Amazon stock itself with one's startup capital would compare to the return on investment of setting up a Amazon store...

Well if you'd bought it a decade ago probably pretty well. On the other hand, a business can easily generate rates of return of over 100% in a year on your initial capital if you can turnover inventory quickly. Pretty hard to find a stock that will do that.

In college I was part of a engineering/business program that included a scholarship and some special classes where we would develop a business to submit to the annual business plan competition. Part of the program included a trip to silicon valley where we stayed in the mansion of a wealthy alumni and got to tour some businesses. I missed the Tesla tour unfortunately as I had to leave early but one place we did tour was 126 Labs which at the time was Amazon's secret product development subsidiary that was creating the Kindle. This was about 6-8 months before it launched and we had to sign NDAs. We only saw early prototypes but I quickly guessed what it was. I remember later that summer thinking that it was going to be a big hit and I should really buy some Amazon stock which was trading at around $75 a share. I already had about $10-12k in the market in mostly financial stocks (most of which soon crashed to a fraction of their value) but I ended up not pulling the trigger. Since Amazon is now trading at about $1,500 and I could have bought it a decade ago for $75 that's an annualized return of about 35%. Amazing to be sure, but still a lot less than you can generate with a business.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on February 27, 2018, 01:59:44 PM
How did you initially find this website/product? Was it through one of these tools or a deal aggregator website (i.e. slickdeals) or just browsing through Amazon listings and then trying to find another source?

I've had a couple of small wins with RA/OA but I would obviously like to find a replenishable product, even if it had a much lower profit margin just to provide some consistency. 

Most of my gross profit margins (profit after deducting all selling/FBA fees and cost of goods sold - not including miscellaneous shipping supplies or other overhead) have been around 20 - 60% with actual profit per item ranging from $1.70 to $40+. Those $40+ per item profits are nice but it's higher risk buying a $80 item to sell for $150 as some of these have had no sales rank so I'm just going off how many recent reviews have been left (recent reviews means someone must be buying it and very few people leave reviews so a few in the last month or two is a good sign) and if there are any eBay sales.


Getting ungated in beauty has really helped. I can go into a beauty supply store and head straight to the clearance section. More often than not, I can find something for $5-10, has good reviews, and no current listings. It's out of stock, probably been discontinued, which is why it's on clearance. At that point I can pretty much list that skin cream or shampoo for whatever I want, and it'll sell. Those women who used it before love it, and are willing to pay up to get it again. It might have retailed for $10-30 originally, I get it for $5-10 and sell it for $50+. It's not something I can depend on every week (unless I was traveling every day hitting up stores state-wide) but it's a nice bonus on top of the replens.

I think now that I've upgraded to a professional account I'm ungated in beauty as well. I searched several different beauty products and I was able to create a listing in all but a few restricted brands, though I did get auto-approved for one brand (which has wholesale but does not allow sales on Amazon as they do that themselves). I remember early on scanning a few clearance beauty products at Target but I was restricted in all of them. If I try to add a grocery item for instance it still says I need approve in that category or sub-category but I never got that with any beauty items and I don't see the beauty category in my list of approvals.

Feels a bit awkward going through a makeup aisle or looking at the beauty clearance items but looks like it's worth checking out now.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on February 27, 2018, 02:24:30 PM
How did you initially find this website/product? Was it through one of these tools or a deal aggregator website (i.e. slickdeals) or just browsing through Amazon listings and then trying to find another source?

I've had a couple of small wins with RA/OA but I would obviously like to find a replenishable product, even if it had a much lower profit margin just to provide some consistency. 

Most of my gross profit margins (profit after deducting all selling/FBA fees and cost of goods sold - not including miscellaneous shipping supplies or other overhead) have been around 20 - 60% with actual profit per item ranging from $1.70 to $40+. Those $40+ per item profits are nice but it's higher risk buying a $80 item to sell for $150 as some of these have had no sales rank so I'm just going off how many recent reviews have been left (recent reviews means someone must be buying it and very few people leave reviews so a few in the last month or two is a good sign) and if there are any eBay sales.


Getting ungated in beauty has really helped. I can go into a beauty supply store and head straight to the clearance section. More often than not, I can find something for $5-10, has good reviews, and no current listings. It's out of stock, probably been discontinued, which is why it's on clearance. At that point I can pretty much list that skin cream or shampoo for whatever I want, and it'll sell. Those women who used it before love it, and are willing to pay up to get it again. It might have retailed for $10-30 originally, I get it for $5-10 and sell it for $50+. It's not something I can depend on every week (unless I was traveling every day hitting up stores state-wide) but it's a nice bonus on top of the replens.

I think now that I've upgraded to a professional account I'm ungated in beauty as well. I searched several different beauty products and I was able to create a listing in all but a few restricted brands, though I did get auto-approved for one brand (which has wholesale but does not allow sales on Amazon as they do that themselves). I remember early on scanning a few clearance beauty products at Target but I was restricted in all of them. If I try to add a grocery item for instance it still says I need approve in that category or sub-category but I never got that with any beauty items and I don't see the beauty category in my list of approvals.

Feels a bit awkward going through a makeup aisle or looking at the beauty clearance items but looks like it's worth checking out now.

For sure, everyone seems to start out with toys and tech (I know I did) but that's a tough market to stick with every month. Grocery, Home and Kitchen, Beauty and Health are where you can sell steadily throughout the year. Not to mention, the ROI on Beauty and Health can be massive. When I've seen video tours of wholesale guys' warehouses, I can always spot the beauty items being prepped. It's a big business.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on February 27, 2018, 03:09:30 PM

For sure, everyone seems to start out with toys and tech (I know I did) but that's a tough market to stick with every month. Grocery, Home and Kitchen, Beauty and Health are where you can sell steadily throughout the year. Not to mention, the ROI on Beauty and Health can be massive. When I've seen video tours of wholesale guys' warehouses, I can always spot the beauty items being prepped. It's a big business.

Have you had much luck with grocery? It seems like the margins would be a lot lower and you have to worry about expiration dates. Plus, how many grocery items really sell for more than a few dollars? I suppose if you sell a whole case of something for $20-30 it could be profitable, but not really any one-off item.

I've avoided tech for the most part, and haven't had much luck with toys. I've got 10 units of an electronic toy I picked up through OA (nice that I can immediately reship it to FBA after just putting a new label on) that should arrive at FBA soon and will hopefully net about $15 at the current price but at a pretty low margin of about 15%. I found some Bluetooth speakers on clearance for $21 that I'm hoping to sell for $60. Those too should arrive soon.

I think you mentioned going through a store with two carts full of light bulbs. I just did that this morning :) one cart full. Luckily I found a helpful clerk at self checkout who let me just count them all up and she punched it in rather than make me scan 130 boxes of light bulbs and bag them. I ended up transferring some to a second cart to take out to my truck. Profit's pretty low but they're selling 1,000 +/- a month and the buy box seems to rotate to some higher priced sellers, not just the lowest or Amazon. So depending on how fast they move I might price them to sell with $1.50 profit or with $2.50 profit. There's still several hundred more at other stores I haven't hit yet. I think I might get my kids to help me prep by putting the barcode stickers over the original barcode.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on February 27, 2018, 03:15:19 PM
With grocery Iíve found the best luck selling multipacks (3 boxes of whatever vs 1) as well as regional stuff, spices, coffee, and anything gluten free or all natural. People are willing to pay up for stuff like that. If thereís a chain thatís only in one state, then customers may prefer their flavor but live across the country. You can be the one to supply them with a product theyíd like to buy but canít where they live. Nothing Iíve done thatís a replen has been high ROI but it can turn over pretty good.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on February 27, 2018, 05:24:08 PM
With grocery Iíve found the best luck selling multipacks (3 boxes of whatever vs 1) as well as regional stuff, spices, coffee, and anything gluten free or all natural. People are willing to pay up for stuff like that. If thereís a chain thatís only in one state, then customers may prefer their flavor but live across the country. You can be the one to supply them with a product theyíd like to buy but canít where they live. Nothing Iíve done thatís a replen has been high ROI but it can turn over pretty good.

I just looked up my favorite salsa from a local restaurant chain and a 3 pack is going for $33 with estimated sale of 15 per month. I'm pretty sure I can buy it for about $4-5 a jar at Walmart. Profit is only a few bucks but they've got a few different varieties and I might be able to workout a wholesale deal with the restaurant locally.

My wheels are spinning. Thanks for the advice. I see a lot of possibilities here.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: max9505672 on February 28, 2018, 06:25:44 AM
With grocery Iíve found the best luck selling multipacks (3 boxes of whatever vs 1) as well as regional stuff, spices, coffee, and anything gluten free or all natural. People are willing to pay up for stuff like that. If thereís a chain thatís only in one state, then customers may prefer their flavor but live across the country. You can be the one to supply them with a product theyíd like to buy but canít where they live. Nothing Iíve done thatís a replen has been high ROI but it can turn over pretty good.

I just looked up my favorite salsa from a local restaurant chain and a 3 pack is going for $33 with estimated sale of 15 per month. I'm pretty sure I can buy it for about $4-5 a jar at Walmart. Profit is only a few bucks but they've got a few different varieties and I might be able to workout a wholesale deal with the restaurant locally.

My wheels are spinning. Thanks for the advice. I see a lot of possibilities here.
As a new seller on FBA, many categories will be blocked to you and food is one of them. Make sure you get ''ungated'' before sending items unless you're account could be closed + a lot of headaches to get your products back.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on February 28, 2018, 12:24:58 PM
With grocery Iíve found the best luck selling multipacks (3 boxes of whatever vs 1) as well as regional stuff, spices, coffee, and anything gluten free or all natural. People are willing to pay up for stuff like that. If thereís a chain thatís only in one state, then customers may prefer their flavor but live across the country. You can be the one to supply them with a product theyíd like to buy but canít where they live. Nothing Iíve done thatís a replen has been high ROI but it can turn over pretty good.

Do you have to send it into FBA as a complete package or can you just send in a bunch of boxes/jar/bags and they will pick out three of them to ship if the listing is for three of a particular item?

I was looking at these jars of salsa that are selling as a three-pack and wondering if I would need to get a separate box to put those three jars in, or stack them up top of each other and get it shrink-wrapped. Since they are glass it would probably need to be the former with some bubble wrap.


I just looked up my favorite salsa from a local restaurant chain and a 3 pack is going for $33 with estimated sale of 15 per month. I'm pretty sure I can buy it for about $4-5 a jar at Walmart. Profit is only a few bucks but they've got a few different varieties and I might be able to workout a wholesale deal with the restaurant locally.

My wheels are spinning. Thanks for the advice. I see a lot of possibilities here.
As a new seller on FBA, many categories will be blocked to you and food is one of them. Make sure you get ''ungated'' before sending items unless you're account could be closed + a lot of headaches to get your products back.

Of course. I'm going to do some more market research before diving into grocery but just this one item could potentially be $50+/- in profit per month and no worries about finding inventory since I can buy a few dozen units at any Walmart in town for $3.78. Might be able to get a better rate straight from the local manufacturer but maybe not. That's just one item from one local brand. I can definitely see expanding out into 20-30 items from a half-dozen of the most popular local brands and even if the margin is only 10-15% that could still be a nice steady base to help support finding the higher margin one-off clearance items.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on February 28, 2018, 08:30:58 PM
I usually stay away from glass cause itís a lot to prep but yeah Iíd think along the lines of a box to put those jars in.

If I do a multipack itís usually just a polybag and a label on the bag. Interesting thing about multipacks is customers will buy them even if it costs more than buying the individual items in higher quantities. All multipacks need to be prepped on your end, Amazon will not bundle them together for you at the time of the sale.

For instance, you can buy a bbq spice for $12 or you can buy my pack of 3 for $49.95. People buy my 3 pack for some reason. I guess they donít do math very well.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on March 07, 2018, 03:17:11 PM
I'm definitely going to look at doing some multipacks. There's the added benefit that if you can customize it you essentially own the listing.

Just got a message from a toy brand owner basically telling me to close my listing or they'll report me to Amazon. It appears to be legitimate and even though I was approved for the brand (automatically) it looks like they're cracking down on unauthorized resellers. Since I sourced 10 units from woot.com it didn't fly with them. I dropped the price to just above my breakeven and quickly sold three but now I'll have to pull the other 7 off and sell them on eBay. Hopefully I can at least breakeven on those.

Still finding a few decent one-off clearance deals, mostly at Walmart. Found a modem/router for $35 that is selling for about $125. It was hidden in the back of the locked display case. Wonder if some employee stuck it back there, hoping to buy it themselves. Just got an alert for an electric chainsaw for $59 that has sold for about $250-300 on Amazon. Supposedly two in stock, guess I'll find out when I swing by after work. Might not be able to send it into FBA because of the battery but even if shipping is $50 that's still a healthy profit margin. I almost got burned with a heavy item I listed on eBay with free shipping. I calculated UPS ground at $40 or less to pretty much the whole US but didn't take into account Hawaii. Got an order from there and shipping was going to be $90 but luckily the buyer was cool with me cancelling the order.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on March 08, 2018, 09:18:14 AM
If a brand reaches out and demands I stop selling, I tell them to go through Amazon. They can't keep me from selling their product unless the listing is infringing on intellectual property (images or description is stolen from brand owner's website or whatever).

I've had a few images taken down, so I had to take pictures of the product myself and the listing is now back to normal.

I've been hit with a counterfeit claim, but sent Amazon my order confirmations and my selling privileges were restored.

A few times the brand owner went through Amazon and got me kicked off the listing, which stunk.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on March 08, 2018, 10:40:52 AM
If a brand reaches out and demands I stop selling, I tell them to go through Amazon. They can't keep me from selling their product unless the listing is infringing on intellectual property (images or description is stolen from brand owner's website or whatever).

I've had a few images taken down, so I had to take pictures of the product myself and the listing is now back to normal.

I've been hit with a counterfeit claim, but sent Amazon my order confirmations and my selling privileges were restored.

A few times the brand owner went through Amazon and got me kicked off the listing, which stunk.

From what I've read, Amazon won't necessarily accept a receipt from Walmart or some random website as proof of authenticity. I know they won't for getting ungated but I don't want to run the risk of having my account shut down over it. I posted in the Amazon seller forums and some people indicated that this particular brand is pretty aggressive about unauthorized resellers. I got an email from Amazon a couple of days before that this brand was going to be restricted soon (no longer automatically ungating I assume) so I took a bit more serious than if it had been totally out of the blue.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on March 09, 2018, 10:26:01 AM
If a brand reaches out and demands I stop selling, I tell them to go through Amazon. They can't keep me from selling their product unless the listing is infringing on intellectual property (images or description is stolen from brand owner's website or whatever).

I've had a few images taken down, so I had to take pictures of the product myself and the listing is now back to normal.

I've been hit with a counterfeit claim, but sent Amazon my order confirmations and my selling privileges were restored.

A few times the brand owner went through Amazon and got me kicked off the listing, which stunk.

From what I've read, Amazon won't necessarily accept a receipt from Walmart or some random website as proof of authenticity. I know they won't for getting ungated but I don't want to run the risk of having my account shut down over it. I posted in the Amazon seller forums and some people indicated that this particular brand is pretty aggressive about unauthorized resellers. I got an email from Amazon a couple of days before that this brand was going to be restricted soon (no longer automatically ungating I assume) so I took a bit more serious than if it had been totally out of the blue.

Sounds like you did the right thing if you got a message from Amazon themselves.

Detailed receipts from retail stores and websites are acceptable for showing Amazon proof of authenticity. It is not ok for getting ungated in a restricted brand or category. You'll need invoices from a legit distributor/wholesaler/manufacturer for ungating.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on March 09, 2018, 11:43:28 AM
Bought a bunch of LED lightbulbs for $4 and was selling them for $10 and making a small profit. Unfortunately after getting a couple boxes into FBA and prepping a few more boxes worth Amazon has now dropped the price to $5.97 and changed it to an add on item. So I'm probably hosed on $800 worth of inventory. Maybe I can find an apartment complex or something similar that wants to buy a few hundred LED light bulbs.

Edit: I guess they changed their minds because Amazon raised the price back up to $11 and stopped making it an add-on item.

Still makes me nervous and I think it's time to get this inventory sold off even if I have to drop the price a bit. Really need to find some more reliable suppliers and defensible products to list.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Phoenix_Fire on March 09, 2018, 05:28:24 PM
I find the retail arbitrage very interesting and am considering getting into it. 

Out of curiosity, how many different items do you normally keep stocked at Amazon, and roughly how many of each?  Iím curious about the quantity needed to get going with this. 

If toys r us ends up going under there will probably be a lot of buying opportunities, but there will also be a lot of people trying the same thing Iím sure.

I keep re-reading this thread and getting more intrigued.  Should probably go set an LLC.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: SC93 on March 10, 2018, 12:06:03 AM
I just want to keep reminding readers what a wise man once told me.... you can sell 10 things at $10 profit and make $100 or you can sell 1 thing at $100 profit. It takes 10x more effort to sell the $10 profit item.

If I did ever do something like this, I would buy high-end retail return pallets from a good company that doesn't cherry-pick the pallets. I'm not saying I would ever do it but if I ever did and I'm not 100% sure you can sell that stuff on Amazon because I know nothing about Amazon.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on March 10, 2018, 06:28:35 PM
I find the retail arbitrage very interesting and am considering getting into it. 

Out of curiosity, how many different items do you normally keep stocked at Amazon, and roughly how many of each?  Iím curious about the quantity needed to get going with this. 

If toys r us ends up going under there will probably be a lot of buying opportunities, but there will also be a lot of people trying the same thing Iím sure.

I keep re-reading this thread and getting more intrigued.  Should probably go set an LLC.

I've got about a dozen items right now. Anywhere from one item to ten on almost everything. I found a bunch of light bulbs on sale and bought about 200 boxes though I've only sent in 72 so far. Though I'm packing another couple of boxes to send into FBA now since I sold 22 boxes in the last two days.

I just want to keep reminding readers what a wise man once told me.... you can sell 10 things at $10 profit and make $100 or you can sell 1 thing at $100 profit. It takes 10x more effort to sell the $10 profit item.

If I did ever do something like this, I would buy high-end retail return pallets from a good company that doesn't cherry-pick the pallets. I'm not saying I would ever do it but if I ever did and I'm not 100% sure you can sell that stuff on Amazon because I know nothing about Amazon.

Not quite 10x the effort in this case. But still, I'm definitely trying to move into products with a higher margin.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: SC93 on March 10, 2018, 08:13:29 PM
You are correct, actually 9x more work. If you sold something at $10 profit, 10 times, you had to mail out 9 more things than I would have had to mail out at $100 profit.

Try a few large ticket items. If you sell 1 thing a month at $1000 profit, you saved yourself a lot of work. There is a lady north of where I live that sells rings and only sells locally. She pays $8 for them and sells them for between $75-$300. I don't know how many she sells but every time I know of, she is meeting up with someone to sell one of those rings. Another lady does the same thing with small furniture. Find something that is going to make you a minimum $50 each time you put the effort in to selling it. And if you choose to sell on something like ebay, the $50 comes after you pay for everything associated with selling in their space. You can do it, just dig deep for those things to make that much profit.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: chuckster on March 10, 2018, 10:32:32 PM
The other day I needed a replacement Thing for something in my house. My first stop was Amazon... they didn't have it, or anything even like it, which surprised me. So I did some googling, and the manufacturer doesn't sell a replacement for this part. So after more online searching, I found someone that sells this thing on ebay, and it was like $13 with $7 shipping because it's coming from Australia. So I did some more googling, and found someone that sells it on his custom website for about $3.50 + $2 shipping, because he's in Europe. He also sells for the same price & shipping from an Etsy store. But not on Amazon. His etsy store has only been around for about 3 months and has about 500 sales.

This thing is very small, about the size of a credit card. I can design my own version of this thing pretty easily. I am sure if I bought a bunch I could get them made for about 50-75 cents each.

Am I crazy to think I could beat this guy in the UK on price if I sell it on Amazon in the US? All I'd have to do is sell below his $5.50, and not having to mail it across an ocean should take care of that.  Or is that too small an item to bother once Amazon's fees come out of every sale?
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on March 11, 2018, 06:46:37 PM
The other day I needed a replacement Thing for something in my house. My first stop was Amazon... they didn't have it, or anything even like it, which surprised me. So I did some googling, and the manufacturer doesn't sell a replacement for this part. So after more online searching, I found someone that sells this thing on ebay, and it was like $13 with $7 shipping because it's coming from Australia. So I did some more googling, and found someone that sells it on his custom website for about $3.50 + $2 shipping, because he's in Europe. He also sells for the same price & shipping from an Etsy store. But not on Amazon. His etsy store has only been around for about 3 months and has about 500 sales.

This thing is very small, about the size of a credit card. I can design my own version of this thing pretty easily. I am sure if I bought a bunch I could get them made for about 50-75 cents each.

Am I crazy to think I could beat this guy in the UK on price if I sell it on Amazon in the US? All I'd have to do is sell below his $5.50, and not having to mail it across an ocean should take care of that.  Or is that too small an item to bother once Amazon's fees come out of every sale?

You don't necessarily have to beat his price. Amazon is usually the cheapest but not always. On the other hand, it is the first (and often only) shopping destination for a tens of millions of people. Maybe you can price it at $7.99 and still get plenty of sales. Or sell it as a 2-pack only for $10.99.

Find something similar on Amazon (in terms of size and weight) and plug it into this FBA fee calculator. https://sellercentral.amazon.com/hz/fba/profitabilitycalculator/index?lang=en_US Amazon's fee is 15% but the FBA fee (cost of them picking, packing, and shipping) will vary by size and weight.

It's hard to be profitable at those very low price points because you'll either have a $0.99 fee per item or have to pay $40 a month for a professional seller account. If you're all in landed cost is $0.75 each and you sell it for $6.00 Amazon's fees might end up being $5.00. Is it worth all that effort to hopefully make $0.25 per widget on something that might sell a few hundred units (or maybe far less) per month? Even if the fees are only $4.00 it's probably not worth it.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: ePalmtrees on March 15, 2018, 01:27:51 PM
Hey guys, I've made my money on amazon for awhile, but selling self-published books through createspace. I've done well but it's getting saturated and I'm looking at jumping into the sellers market. I'm probably going to the amazing.com amazon sellers conference in Orlando next month.

Would anyone currently selling on amazon want to skype chat/mastermind? I know I don't have much to offer at the moment since I'm not actually doing it but would love to have some friends to chat with in the industry. I was in affiliate marketing for a long time and miss having internet marketing friends to talk about this stuff with.



Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on March 19, 2018, 01:44:04 PM
How did you initially find this website/product? Was it through one of these tools or a deal aggregator website (i.e. slickdeals) or just browsing through Amazon listings and then trying to find another source?

I've had a couple of small wins with RA/OA but I would obviously like to find a replenishable product, even if it had a much lower profit margin just to provide some consistency. 
Getting ungated in beauty has really helped. I can go into a beauty supply store and head straight to the clearance section. More often than not, I can find something for $5-10, has good reviews, and no current listings. It's out of stock, probably been discontinued, which is why it's on clearance. At that point I can pretty much list that skin cream or shampoo for whatever I want, and it'll sell. Those women who used it before love it, and are willing to pay up to get it again. It might have retailed for $10-30 originally, I get it for $5-10 and sell it for $50+. It's not something I can depend on every week (unless I was traveling every day hitting up stores state-wide) but it's a nice bonus on top of the replens.

I found 9 bottles of a self-tanning prduct in the clearance aisle at a Walmart a couple of weeks ago for $2.75 each. Sales rank seemed to be okay and it looked like it was selling for $15-20. I was planning to send it in to FBA but I would have needed to put it in a poly bag and didn't feel like buying a 100 pack for this one item. I finally put it up as fulfilled by merchant last week and I basically sold all 9 units in about 4 days. I started at $17.99 and overnight sold 5. Then I bumped the price up to $19.99 and sold a few more the next day and finally up to $21.99 and sold the final unit a day later. The only other seller is priced at about $30. This items sells from Ulta Beauty for $19.99 so I definitely underpriced it a bit to start with but obviously there was some pent-up demand since the only other seller had it priced so high. Unfortunately I can't even find this product on Walmart's website. It's apparently a nicer European brand so I'm not sure why it was in stock at Walmart. I'd love to be able to find some more in a clearance aisle.


I found a local wholesaler who carries some local food brands and will give me net 30 terms after the first cash order with no minimum order quantity. They happened to be located a block away from the post office I drop off some packages at so it would be easy to stop by there on the way to or from work. Should be able to get ungated in grocery with that and I figure I can buy 10 cases of various products for about $250-300. Margins aren't amazing because I'll have to repackage some of the glass products and buy a bunch of boxes and bubble wrap for that. Still, I've already identified several products they carry where a 3- or 4-pack is selling for $30-35 and I can buy those 3-4 units for about $11-12 each. A lot of the products are selling decent amounts despite having pretty crappy listings with a single picture, maybe two and just a few bullet points. There are some other sellers so I'm thinking of trying to create my own pack with a slightly customized packaging. I.e. get a nice sturdy box and get a logo printed on it. I see one seller who is offering some recipes with a 4-pack so they have an exclusive listing where they are probably getting at least 5-10 sales a month, all to themselves.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: evme on March 21, 2018, 03:05:53 AM
Hi all, I'm new to the MMM forum but have been a seller on amazon for many years. I have sold through FBA for the past 6-7 years. I mostly sell media products, or what amazon refers to as BMVD (Books, Music, Videos and DVDs). I expect to chime in more later but thought I would introduce myself for now.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Cali on March 21, 2018, 05:18:12 AM
posting to follow
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on March 21, 2018, 02:26:11 PM
How did you initially find this website/product? Was it through one of these tools or a deal aggregator website (i.e. slickdeals) or just browsing through Amazon listings and then trying to find another source?

I've had a couple of small wins with RA/OA but I would obviously like to find a replenishable product, even if it had a much lower profit margin just to provide some consistency. 
Getting ungated in beauty has really helped. I can go into a beauty supply store and head straight to the clearance section. More often than not, I can find something for $5-10, has good reviews, and no current listings. It's out of stock, probably been discontinued, which is why it's on clearance. At that point I can pretty much list that skin cream or shampoo for whatever I want, and it'll sell. Those women who used it before love it, and are willing to pay up to get it again. It might have retailed for $10-30 originally, I get it for $5-10 and sell it for $50+. It's not something I can depend on every week (unless I was traveling every day hitting up stores state-wide) but it's a nice bonus on top of the replens.

I found 9 bottles of a self-tanning prduct in the clearance aisle at a Walmart a couple of weeks ago for $2.75 each. Sales rank seemed to be okay and it looked like it was selling for $15-20. I was planning to send it in to FBA but I would have needed to put it in a poly bag and didn't feel like buying a 100 pack for this one item. I finally put it up as fulfilled by merchant last week and I basically sold all 9 units in about 4 days. I started at $17.99 and overnight sold 5. Then I bumped the price up to $19.99 and sold a few more the next day and finally up to $21.99 and sold the final unit a day later. The only other seller is priced at about $30. This items sells from Ulta Beauty for $19.99 so I definitely underpriced it a bit to start with but obviously there was some pent-up demand since the only other seller had it priced so high. Unfortunately I can't even find this product on Walmart's website. It's apparently a nicer European brand so I'm not sure why it was in stock at Walmart. I'd love to be able to find some more in a clearance aisle.


I found a local wholesaler who carries some local food brands and will give me net 30 terms after the first cash order with no minimum order quantity. They happened to be located a block away from the post office I drop off some packages at so it would be easy to stop by there on the way to or from work. Should be able to get ungated in grocery with that and I figure I can buy 10 cases of various products for about $250-300. Margins aren't amazing because I'll have to repackage some of the glass products and buy a bunch of boxes and bubble wrap for that. Still, I've already identified several products they carry where a 3- or 4-pack is selling for $30-35 and I can buy those 3-4 units for about $11-12 each. A lot of the products are selling decent amounts despite having pretty crappy listings with a single picture, maybe two and just a few bullet points. There are some other sellers so I'm thinking of trying to create my own pack with a slightly customized packaging. I.e. get a nice sturdy box and get a logo printed on it. I see one seller who is offering some recipes with a 4-pack so they have an exclusive listing where they are probably getting at least 5-10 sales a month, all to themselves.

Is that wholesaler mostly for convenience stores? I can't seem to find a wholesaler that does legit grocery stores.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on March 21, 2018, 02:51:14 PM

Is that wholesaler mostly for convenience stores? I can't seem to find a wholesaler that does legit grocery stores.

Nope, they seem to do regular grocery stores. It definitely feels like a mom and pop sort of outfit. Small warehouse with a really outdated office and just a few people working there. I walked in and asked if they had a product list of price list as I was interested in buying and it took the sales guy a few minutes to find something. Still, seems like there's good potential.

My sister-in-law and her husband both work at a natural foods grocery store (regional chain) and she works in the receiving department. So if the grocery thing goes well I might see if she can point me towards some suppliers for some products that they carry that might have potential.

I found a personal care brand that it looks like might have some OA/RA potential. Walmart stocks some of their products but so does another website. They're selling for about $6-7 per unit in both places but Amazon only has some of their products listed. Those single items there's no margin but selling a pair (shampoo and conditioner for instance) there's just one seller with a few in stock who's got them at $40 and is still managing to get a few sales per month. I'm testing the market with a few units fulfilled by merchant at $30 before I place a big order and send it in to FBA. To do that I'll have a bit of prep (poly bag and label). I also tried contacting the brand directly. After all if they can sell it to Walmart and this other retailer who are reselling it for $6 they must be wholesaling it for $3-5 per unit. Then again, they wouldn't be the first brand to lose money selling to a big box retailer. All of the listings only have a single image and so-so bullet points so hopefully I can convince the brand owner to sell to me directly and boost sales by improving the listings.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on March 21, 2018, 03:36:40 PM

I found a personal care brand that it looks like might have some OA/RA potential. Walmart stocks some of their products but so does another website. They're selling for about $6-7 per unit in both places but Amazon only has some of their products listed. Those single items there's no margin but selling a pair (shampoo and conditioner for instance) there's just one seller with a few in stock who's got them at $40 and is still managing to get a few sales per month. I'm testing the market with a few units fulfilled by merchant at $30 before I place a big order and send it in to FBA. To do that I'll have a bit of prep (poly bag and label). I also tried contacting the brand directly. After all if they can sell it to Walmart and this other retailer who are reselling it for $6 they must be wholesaling it for $3-5 per unit. Then again, they wouldn't be the first brand to lose money selling to a big box retailer. All of the listings only have a single image and so-so bullet points so hopefully I can convince the brand owner to sell to me directly and boost sales by improving the listings.

Cha-ching. Just sold a pair of shampoo and conditioner for $30 that I bought off the shelf last night at Walmart for about $13 with tax and listed for sale about four hours ago. Shipping FBM is more than FBA so profit margin is about $6 but should increase a couple dollars with FBA and buying from the online supplier with no tax.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: evme on March 25, 2018, 02:01:28 AM
Has anyone found a way to skip or automate the "Add dangerous goods information" step when converting products to fulfilled by amazon? It's not a big deal when you're just adding a couple SKUs but when you have a few dozen it gets to be a real time suck.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on March 26, 2018, 06:48:46 AM

I found a personal care brand that it looks like might have some OA/RA potential. Walmart stocks some of their products but so does another website. They're selling for about $6-7 per unit in both places but Amazon only has some of their products listed. Those single items there's no margin but selling a pair (shampoo and conditioner for instance) there's just one seller with a few in stock who's got them at $40 and is still managing to get a few sales per month. I'm testing the market with a few units fulfilled by merchant at $30 before I place a big order and send it in to FBA. To do that I'll have a bit of prep (poly bag and label). I also tried contacting the brand directly. After all if they can sell it to Walmart and this other retailer who are reselling it for $6 they must be wholesaling it for $3-5 per unit. Then again, they wouldn't be the first brand to lose money selling to a big box retailer. All of the listings only have a single image and so-so bullet points so hopefully I can convince the brand owner to sell to me directly and boost sales by improving the listings.

Cha-ching. Just sold a pair of shampoo and conditioner for $30 that I bought off the shelf last night at Walmart for about $13 with tax and listed for sale about four hours ago. Shipping FBM is more than FBA so profit margin is about $6 but should increase a couple dollars with FBA and buying from the online supplier with no tax.

Proceeded to sell eight more units over the weekend. Guess there was some pent up demand of people not willing to pay $40. Decided to order about 30 more packages from an online supplier for sending in to FBA. It's too bad you can't keep it FBM while waiting for FBA to get in stock. However next week I'll be leaving for two weeks so I won't be able to do any fulfillment myself. I'll need to set my inventory to 0 for some random one-off items I have FBM (mostly books).

My biggest problem now is time and still trying to get my wife on board. Now that I'm done with my regular and time-consuming job I should have some more time to grow this. At least until I start my new job next month some time.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Cwadda on March 26, 2018, 07:39:55 AM
Has anyone found a way to skip or automate the "Add dangerous goods information" step when converting products to fulfilled by amazon? It's not a big deal when you're just adding a couple SKUs but when you have a few dozen it gets to be a real time suck.

Inventory Lab has a streamlined process for inventory management, including dangerous goods information.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: evme on March 27, 2018, 07:30:40 PM
Has anyone found a way to skip or automate the "Add dangerous goods information" step when converting products to fulfilled by amazon? It's not a big deal when you're just adding a couple SKUs but when you have a few dozen it gets to be a real time suck.

Inventory Lab has a streamlined process for inventory management, including dangerous goods information.

Good to know. I don't want to give a third party credentials to access my account though, so guess I'm out of luck.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on March 28, 2018, 06:14:24 AM

I found a personal care brand that it looks like might have some OA/RA potential. Walmart stocks some of their products but so does another website. They're selling for about $6-7 per unit in both places but Amazon only has some of their products listed. Those single items there's no margin but selling a pair (shampoo and conditioner for instance) there's just one seller with a few in stock who's got them at $40 and is still managing to get a few sales per month. I'm testing the market with a few units fulfilled by merchant at $30 before I place a big order and send it in to FBA. To do that I'll have a bit of prep (poly bag and label). I also tried contacting the brand directly. After all if they can sell it to Walmart and this other retailer who are reselling it for $6 they must be wholesaling it for $3-5 per unit. Then again, they wouldn't be the first brand to lose money selling to a big box retailer. All of the listings only have a single image and so-so bullet points so hopefully I can convince the brand owner to sell to me directly and boost sales by improving the listings.

Cha-ching. Just sold a pair of shampoo and conditioner for $30 that I bought off the shelf last night at Walmart for about $13 with tax and listed for sale about four hours ago. Shipping FBM is more than FBA so profit margin is about $6 but should increase a couple dollars with FBA and buying from the online supplier with no tax.

Proceeded to sell eight more units over the weekend. Guess there was some pent up demand of people not willing to pay $40. Decided to order about 30 more packages from an online supplier for sending in to FBA. It's too bad you can't keep it FBM while waiting for FBA to get in stock. However next week I'll be leaving for two weeks so I won't be able to do any fulfillment myself. I'll need to set my inventory to 0 for some random one-off items I have FBM (mostly books).

My biggest problem now is time and still trying to get my wife on board. Now that I'm done with my regular and time-consuming job I should have some more time to grow this. At least until I start my new job next month some time.

I guess I was mistaken, you can have both FBA and FBM on the same listing at the same time.

I was able to get my wife on board somewhat by giving her a pair of shampoo and conditioner I bought. :) One was leaking a little from the store but I probably could have cleaned it up and sold it. She's actually enjoying it and wants to write a review on Amazon (using our personal account). Still, $13 to get her on at least somewhat on board is well worth it.

Now I just have to hope no one else hops on this listing. Between the different varieties I could be looking at 50-100 sales per month based on how quickly it's been selling so far. At about $6-7 profit each that would make for a nice base monthly income with an easily replenishable product that appears to have a pretty loyal group of buyers. The online supplier I found even has each individual unit already in a poly bag and delivers within two days for free.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: kpetar on April 15, 2018, 01:49:31 PM
I started private label 4 years ago, currently, I have 7 SKU's all PL, so I can be helpful in this thread.

My advice to brand new sellers:


I still have a lot to learn, but I can say biggest mistakes new sellers make are: not differentiating enough, and not picking an item with a higher selling price.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: PhoenixHeat on April 22, 2018, 12:59:40 AM
Wealth of information in this thread!

Excited..
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: LiseE on May 02, 2018, 01:59:33 PM
kpetar ... if just starting out do you think it's too risky to go right into PL?  Do you think it's necessary to do arbitrage first?  Also, can you offer any advice or tips on how you find products?  What services (if any) do you use?
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on May 03, 2018, 10:08:08 AM
Recently I started selling shampoo that quickly turned into 50% of my profits. Just got word from the grocery chain I was sourcing it from that it's no longer being manufactured and was pulled from the shelves. The risks of having too many eggs in one basket are real. It won't be long until I'm all sold out and will need to find other products to source. Doubtful I'll be able to find another product as profitable and easy as that one.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on May 03, 2018, 11:18:24 PM
Recently I started selling shampoo that quickly turned into 50% of my profits. Just got word from the grocery chain I was sourcing it from that it's no longer being manufactured and was pulled from the shelves. The risks of having too many eggs in one basket are real. It won't be long until I'm all sold out and will need to find other products to source. Doubtful I'll be able to find another product as profitable and easy as that one.

I found a shampoo and conditioner that's been selling pretty well and I found a cheap online supplier in addition to a grocery store. Buy for $12-13 and sell for $30. With 3-4 SKUs I'm getting an average of 2-3 sales per day with about $10 profit on each via FBA. Unfortunately had an issue where several bundles got separated at the warehouse and several customer complaints about receiving only shampoo or only conditioner. I've got an open case and hopefully Amazon will reimburse me for sending the replacement item direct via priority mail.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Cwadda on May 05, 2018, 11:53:30 AM
kpetar ... if just starting out do you think it's too risky to go right into PL?  Do you think it's necessary to do arbitrage first?  Also, can you offer any advice or tips on how you find products?  What services (if any) do you use?

You have to be very careful with private labeling. Foreign sellers make competition extremely fierce, to the point of driving your product into the ground.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: PhoenixHeat on May 05, 2018, 08:06:23 PM
I started FBA a few months ago after running into a guy at DisneyWorld who started doing it a year or two ago. He told me I could make $100k the first year easy if I put in the work. I was intrigued so I thought i'd check it out.

He does retail/online arbitrage. You'll see FBA sellers call it RA and OA. There is also wholesale and private label (PL).

Retail Arbitrage: Finding stuff locally that selling for much cheaper than it is on Amazon
Online Arbitrage: Finding stuff online at other websites that is selling for much cheaper than it is on Amazon
Wholesale: Finding wholesale distributors or manufacturers that will sell you product at wholesale prices and you sell it retail price on Amazon
Private Label: Creating your own products either in the US or Asia and selling them on Amazon

The guy I met told me to spend $350 on thesellingfamily.com. Being a self-taught trader I decided I could probably get the same info for free or much cheaper by reading books and blogs. From what I've seen and heard from them though, their advice appears to be sound and they look like good people. I'm just cheap when it comes to paying for tuition. I did buy a few $10 Chris Green courses on Udemy. Chris is a good guy and has a lot of ideas. He pioneered RA for sure, and makes a few seller tools like ScanPower.

I've made plenty of mistakes along the way. The biggest ones:

1) Buying product in brands that I was restricted from selling. I didn't check on the Amazon Seller app first before buying. These are now worthless and you either have to return it or sell it on eBay. Most of the big name brands are restricted and you gotta pay $1-3k to sell them (Little Tikes, Mattell, Lego, Nerf, Hasbro, WWE, Star Wars, Beats, Nike, Asics, Apple, etc...)
2) Not checking fees on the product before buying. Amazon FBA basically takes 1/3 of the price for their fees. So if it sells for $30, Amazon takes $10. Subtract what the item cost you and that's what you have left. So you really want to find the item for $10-15 so you can make $5-10 on it after fees.
3) Buying products because they are cheap compared to Amazon, but not checking the sales rank history first. It doesn't matter how cheap you got it for, if it doesn't have a good sales rank it'll never sell.
4) Buying products that Amazon considers hazmat and won't let you sell FBA. Basically if it's got chemicals in it or it's an item with batteries, you better make sure you can sell it FBA before buying it. You'd be surprised what products Amazon considers 'dangerous.'
5) Not checking the sales price history of the item. Say I find an item for $10 and it's selling for $30 on Amazon. I think great and I buy it. But then once I list it I realize that it only temporarily listed at that price and now other sellers have caught on and some idiot is trying to drive the price down. Or maybe Amazon was a seller and was temporarily out of stock. Once Amazon gets the product in stock the price plummets down to $12.99. Now I'm going to lose money after fees, and hoping that Amazon goes out of stock is useless.

You'll have to go into this with the mentality that it's a real business. It's going to take time, effort and $$$ to learn everything and make a bunch of mistakes. But the potential is there and you can make this whatever you want. You can sell used books on Amazon and start off with literally $100. Find books for free locally or from thrift stores or library sales. You can buy cheap products on clearance and start off with little money.

Once you figure out how this works, you can work as little or as much as you want. After the first several months to a year, you can choose to only work during good seasons (like 4th quarter or textbook season). You can get a virtual assistant to do online sourcing for you. You can hire a prep center to receive all the items you order online, prep them and send them in to Amazon. You can buy a repricer to automatically reprice your items based on a certain criteria. You can outsource a lot in this so that your effort is minimal for the amount of $$$ you can make.

After selling for 2 months, I've bought around $4k worth of product, sold around $2k at list price, and make about $1k in profit. I'm now using the money I get from Amazon to source more product, instead of putting my own money in. Maybe in the 4th quarter I'll invest in additional inventory, we'll see. I hear 4th quarter is insane.

I have a full time job, a wife, 2 boys and another on the way. So I only source/prep during lunch or evenings after boys go to bed. I use an online scanning tool that goes through other websites looking for deals. So I'm not browsing around for hours, I just see the list of items that already meet my pre-set criteria. Every week I get better at going straight to the spots in stores that have potential items. Every week I'm getting faster at spotting good items to scan. Eventually you can walk through the aisles and not waste much time. You know exactly what you are looking for so if they don't have anything, you leave and go on to the next store. After selling 100+ different products, I'm now seeing the ones that sold well and so all I have to do is order more once the inventory levels get low enough. This only takes a few minutes of my time. Each week as Amazon sees that I'm a good seller, they give me permission to sell products and categories that I was previously prevented from selling. This opens up new opportunities.

It's my hope to get to a point where I have at least 30+ replenish-able products. Meaning these are products that sell well, and I can buy them at a set price online or in a store on a regular basis. There are plenty of these types of products on Amazon that sell for much higher than in the store, you just have to spend the time looking. Once I have enough of those, then I can count on those for regular income and spend my free time looking for one-time deals/clearance/liquidation, etc.

Once I've made enough profit I plan to spend some money getting ungated in the premium brands. I see so many deals that I can't take advantage of because it's a restricted brand. The restricted brands have much less competition, so you don't have to worry as much about the price tanking on you from additional sellers jumping on the listing.

There is a huge market out there of people selling to Amazon FBA sellers. Books, eBooks, online courses, mentoring, blogs, podcasts, facebook groups etc. There is no shortage of information. Just search for Amazon FBA in Google, Amazon, Facebook or a podcast app and you'll fine plenty. The software tools available to help sellers are night and day compared to 5 years ago.

Great info, thank you.

One year later are you still using the online scanning tools and finding they justify the cost?

Now that you sold over 100+ products and you see what sells you mention you just order more to list when your stock runs low. I imagine these are replenishables you found you can buy retail and flip on amazon?
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: PhoenixHeat on May 05, 2018, 08:07:33 PM
Here's an example of Online Arbitrage:

Insignia Plug-In Bluetooth Speaker
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/insignia-plug-in-bluetooth-speaker-white/8417024.p?skuId=8417024
Sells for $14.99 + tax free shipping

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00WH893JM/
Sells for $34.82 Amazon FBA

Fees: $5.77
Net Profit: $12.81
Profit Margin: 79%

There are 8 other FBA sellers on this item and it sells a few per week so I wouldn't buy more than a few.

Of course there will be shipping charges to send this to Amazon, however if you live close to a fulfillment center it won't be too much. Amazon has the best shipping rates in the world. I'm 100 miles from a fulfillment center and to ship a 18" cubed box weighing 25 lbs UPS might cost me $8. Retail that might cost you $30-$40.

I typically only look for items selling for over $15 on Amazon, and I want to make at least $5 profit on each item to make it worth my time. I'll make an exception to this if it is an item I can sell a lot of, like a household good that sells all day long and I can buy as much of it as I want.

The best item is one that is small, light, expensive with a good sales rank. It'll have the lowest FBA fees and will give the best ROI.
I used this exact product as an experiment but seems i couldnt get around the hazmat concerns getting it o amazon. How did you handle this?
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: PhoenixHeat on May 06, 2018, 12:05:08 AM
Question for you: how did you go about getting the grocery category approval? Is it difficult?

Sign up for a free account on Pricemaster.com

You will either need to make 3 separate purchases if you don't have a sales tax certificate or Business License or Home Occupation Permit, or 1 purchase if you have 1 of those documents. I did 1 large purchase (probably too large) as well as submitted my Texas Sales Tax Certificate.

You will need to make sure the business name and address on the Pricemaster invoice is identical to the business name and address on your Amazon seller profile. Note this is not your store name, but the name you give Amazon for tax purposes. You want it to be clear to a foreign Amazon seller support associate that it is the same person/company.

The grocery application form will tell you how many units you need to have on the invoice, but plan on buying at least 10 cases of each item. If you need 3 invoices, then place 3 orders of 10 cases/boxes each.

Product 1: https://pricemaster.com//WALKERS-SHORTBREAD-ROUNDS-24PCSBOX?path=
matches with https://www.amazon.com/Walkers-Shortbread-1-2-oz-2-Count-Cookies/dp/B0019VM5FC

Product 2: https://pricemaster.com//HARIBO-DINOSAURS-5oz---12-BAGSCS?path=
matches with http://www.amazon.com/dp/B008M2DYOC

Product 3: https://pricemaster.com//KOOL-AID-BLACK-CHERRY-48S-3214?path=
matches with http://www.amazon.com/dp/B000ED6IZE

Expect to pay a good amount for shipping. Expect to lose a few bucks on this, but you won't lose a lot. These items sell well (you'll probably sell out within a month) and the ROI on each one is close to break-even after Amazon FBA fees. However, once you factor in shipping you'll probably lose a little bit. It's worth it though. I probably made the money back within a week or two. Grocery can be an awesome category.

You will need to send Amazon the 'original' invoice from Pricemaster. Just wait a day or two after placing the order and they will send it to you. Don't send in the order form or the online Order Invoice you get from the Pricemaster website. You should get an "Original Invoice" from them a day or two after placing the order.

Write the ASIN of the item next to each line item on the invoice. Assume the Amazon seller support has no idea how to read an invoice and figure it out on their own. Make it easy for them. Write down the appropriate ASIN on the same line, and cover up the pricing info. I used Kami online PDF annotation and markup tool. You can do it by hand if you want and scan in the invoice.

Once approved, are you then going back t Price master to buy wholesale and flip?
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: PhoenixHeat on May 06, 2018, 02:35:36 PM
For anyone curious, I'm currently generating $8000/month in sales, operating at a 25% profit margin. It's livable income for me, but I'm a single guy. I also have other income streams, so I just invest the profits back into buying more inventory, like what hodedofome is doing.

Private label? Doing the recommended to buy a small product you can sell for about $20 or do you have a different approach?
how are you doing now and are you strictly RA or do you do OA as well? If so do you rely on any tools for the OA part?
Nope, just retail arbitrage.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: PhoenixHeat on May 06, 2018, 03:33:15 PM

For sure, everyone seems to start out with toys and tech (I know I did) but that's a tough market to stick with every month. Grocery, Home and Kitchen, Beauty and Health are where you can sell steadily throughout the year. Not to mention, the ROI on Beauty and Health can be massive. When I've seen video tours of wholesale guys' warehouses, I can always spot the beauty items being prepped. It's a big business.

Have you had much luck with grocery? It seems like the margins would be a lot lower and you have to worry about expiration dates. Plus, how many grocery items really sell for more than a few dollars? I suppose if you sell a whole case of something for $20-30 it could be profitable, but not really any one-off item.

I've avoided tech for the most part, and haven't had much luck with toys. I've got 10 units of an electronic toy I picked up through OA (nice that I can immediately reship it to FBA after just putting a new label on) that should arrive at FBA soon and will hopefully net about $15 at the current price but at a pretty low margin of about 15%. I found some Bluetooth speakers on clearance for $21 that I'm hoping to sell for $60. Those too should arrive soon.

I think you mentioned going through a store with two carts full of light bulbs. I just did that this morning :) one cart full. Luckily I found a helpful clerk at self checkout who let me just count them all up and she punched it in rather than make me scan 130 boxes of light bulbs and bag them. I ended up transferring some to a second cart to take out to my truck. Profit's pretty low but they're selling 1,000 +/- a month and the buy box seems to rotate to some higher priced sellers, not just the lowest or Amazon. So depending on how fast they move I might price them to sell with $1.50 profit or with $2.50 profit. There's still several hundred more at other stores I haven't hit yet. I think I might get my kids to help me prep by putting the barcode stickers over the original barcode.

Any light bulbs ive scanned thus far are restricted - is there something i am missing?
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Cwadda on May 07, 2018, 09:40:07 AM
Here's an example of Online Arbitrage:

Insignia Plug-In Bluetooth Speaker
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/insignia-plug-in-bluetooth-speaker-white/8417024.p?skuId=8417024
Sells for $14.99 + tax free shipping

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00WH893JM/
Sells for $34.82 Amazon FBA

Fees: $5.77
Net Profit: $12.81
Profit Margin: 79%

There are 8 other FBA sellers on this item and it sells a few per week so I wouldn't buy more than a few.

Of course there will be shipping charges to send this to Amazon, however if you live close to a fulfillment center it won't be too much. Amazon has the best shipping rates in the world. I'm 100 miles from a fulfillment center and to ship a 18" cubed box weighing 25 lbs UPS might cost me $8. Retail that might cost you $30-$40.

I typically only look for items selling for over $15 on Amazon, and I want to make at least $5 profit on each item to make it worth my time. I'll make an exception to this if it is an item I can sell a lot of, like a household good that sells all day long and I can buy as much of it as I want.

The best item is one that is small, light, expensive with a good sales rank. It'll have the lowest FBA fees and will give the best ROI.
I used this exact product as an experiment but seems i couldnt get around the hazmat concerns getting it o amazon. How did you handle this?

There is no way around. If it's listed as a hazmat, it cannot be sold Amazon FBA. You may still sell it from your house (fulfilled by merchant).
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Cwadda on May 07, 2018, 09:40:58 AM

For sure, everyone seems to start out with toys and tech (I know I did) but that's a tough market to stick with every month. Grocery, Home and Kitchen, Beauty and Health are where you can sell steadily throughout the year. Not to mention, the ROI on Beauty and Health can be massive. When I've seen video tours of wholesale guys' warehouses, I can always spot the beauty items being prepped. It's a big business.

Have you had much luck with grocery? It seems like the margins would be a lot lower and you have to worry about expiration dates. Plus, how many grocery items really sell for more than a few dollars? I suppose if you sell a whole case of something for $20-30 it could be profitable, but not really any one-off item.

I've avoided tech for the most part, and haven't had much luck with toys. I've got 10 units of an electronic toy I picked up through OA (nice that I can immediately reship it to FBA after just putting a new label on) that should arrive at FBA soon and will hopefully net about $15 at the current price but at a pretty low margin of about 15%. I found some Bluetooth speakers on clearance for $21 that I'm hoping to sell for $60. Those too should arrive soon.

I think you mentioned going through a store with two carts full of light bulbs. I just did that this morning :) one cart full. Luckily I found a helpful clerk at self checkout who let me just count them all up and she punched it in rather than make me scan 130 boxes of light bulbs and bag them. I ended up transferring some to a second cart to take out to my truck. Profit's pretty low but they're selling 1,000 +/- a month and the buy box seems to rotate to some higher priced sellers, not just the lowest or Amazon. So depending on how fast they move I might price them to sell with $1.50 profit or with $2.50 profit. There's still several hundred more at other stores I haven't hit yet. I think I might get my kids to help me prep by putting the barcode stickers over the original barcode.

Any light bulbs ive scanned thus far are restricted - is there something i am missing?
Either the bulbs are listed as hazmat or the actual brand is restricted. So you cannot sell that brand without being approved first.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: PhoenixHeat on May 07, 2018, 12:11:04 PM
I heard and started learning about being an FBA seller in mid April 2018. I started buying inventory 4.23.18. My initial goal is to Prove the concept could work like the sucess stories indicated.

I sent my first box to FBA like 4.24.18 or 4.25 and my first sale was like 4.27. Its surprising how sales can be pending for a number of days without shipping since as a consumer I am used to buying Prime and seeing the product in 2 days or less at my door. But, like others have indicated this is fairly normal and nothing to be concerned with. In fact the orders slowly but surely started to get shipped out.

I think I've had inventory at Amazon for about 10 days now and it seems i am getting the proof of concept I am looking for.

Thanks for all the info sharing thus far everyone.

Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: robartsd on May 07, 2018, 12:53:25 PM
Its surprising how sales can be pending for a number of days without shipping since as a consumer I am used to buying Prime and seeing the product in 2 days or less at my door. But, like others have indicated this is fairly normal and nothing to be concerned with. In fact the orders slowly but surely started to get shipped out.
I would guess that the pending orders not being shipped for a few days are orders where non-Prime shoppers chose "Super Saver Shipping". As a consumer, there is no need to pay Amazon ~$100/yr to get free shipping if you're willing to wait up to two weeks and group purchases in $25-35 orders.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: PhoenixHeat on May 07, 2018, 04:34:18 PM
Its surprising how sales can be pending for a number of days without shipping since as a consumer I am used to buying Prime and seeing the product in 2 days or less at my door. But, like others have indicated this is fairly normal and nothing to be concerned with. In fact the orders slowly but surely started to get shipped out.
I would guess that the pending orders not being shipped for a few days are orders where non-Prime shoppers chose "Super Saver Shipping". As a consumer, there is no need to pay Amazon ~$100/yr to get free shipping if you're willing to wait up to two weeks and group purchases in $25-35 orders.

I hadn't considered this - interesting.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: kpetar on May 08, 2018, 07:10:59 AM
kpetar ... if just starting out do you think it's too risky to go right into PL?  Do you think it's necessary to do arbitrage first?  Also, can you offer any advice or tips on how you find products?  What services (if any) do you use?

Well, "risk" is always a factor in starting a new business. You can try with arbitrage, spend some $$$ and learn the ropes. Trust me, youíll learn more from doing it than you will from any course out there.
Finding profitable products to sell on Amazon is the most overwhelming, the most difficult step of the process and probably the No. 1 thing people getting stuck with. If you donít have a product, you are DEAD in the water. Itís the first step to a successful Amazon business, or ANY business really. If you donít have a product to sell, you have no FBA business. At start you should check product with sourcing price $10-15/unit and needs to come in via Ocean Freight to be competitive. You are not going to find the same amount of competition because people arenít willing to ďriskĒ that much on a private label when there are cheaper investments. If you search for light and small product that can be shipped by air and with sourcing price between $1-$5 then you will see small profit margin and tons of competitors. All of those things that made it easy for you are also easy to others too. For a new competitor, there is very little risk of investing $1000 on product+marketing in the hopes of finding a winner.

And of course - you have to differentiate. Hard? No. Example: toothpicks. There is no simpler product, but still, you can introduce toothpicks out of an almond tree, pay some bloggers to write how are they better for your teets etc. and boom you have a different product that you can price higher than regular toothpicks.

I use Jungle scout and Unicorn smasher but the issue with this kind of program (Jungle scout) is the more users it has, the higher chance there is that another seller is seeing the same products as you. Use it just for idea validation.

Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on May 09, 2018, 07:58:59 AM
Once approved, are you then going back t Price master to buy wholesale and flip?

No, it was work just to find items I could break even on. You don't go to Pricemaster to make money. You go there to get ungated for hopefully the leastt cost possible.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on May 09, 2018, 08:01:58 AM
Here's an example of Online Arbitrage:

Insignia Plug-In Bluetooth Speaker
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/insignia-plug-in-bluetooth-speaker-white/8417024.p?skuId=8417024
Sells for $14.99 + tax free shipping

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00WH893JM/
Sells for $34.82 Amazon FBA

Fees: $5.77
Net Profit: $12.81
Profit Margin: 79%

There are 8 other FBA sellers on this item and it sells a few per week so I wouldn't buy more than a few.

Of course there will be shipping charges to send this to Amazon, however if you live close to a fulfillment center it won't be too much. Amazon has the best shipping rates in the world. I'm 100 miles from a fulfillment center and to ship a 18" cubed box weighing 25 lbs UPS might cost me $8. Retail that might cost you $30-$40.

I typically only look for items selling for over $15 on Amazon, and I want to make at least $5 profit on each item to make it worth my time. I'll make an exception to this if it is an item I can sell a lot of, like a household good that sells all day long and I can buy as much of it as I want.

The best item is one that is small, light, expensive with a good sales rank. It'll have the lowest FBA fees and will give the best ROI.
I used this exact product as an experiment but seems i couldnt get around the hazmat concerns getting it o amazon. How did you handle this?

When I look up this bluetooth speaker on the Amazon Seller app I don't see it being listed as hazmat. Are you seeing this?
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: PhoenixHeat on May 09, 2018, 08:54:45 AM
Here's an example of Online Arbitrage:

Insignia Plug-In Bluetooth Speaker
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/insignia-plug-in-bluetooth-speaker-white/8417024.p?skuId=8417024
Sells for $14.99 + tax free shipping

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00WH893JM/
Sells for $34.82 Amazon FBA

Fees: $5.77
Net Profit: $12.81
Profit Margin: 79%

There are 8 other FBA sellers on this item and it sells a few per week so I wouldn't buy more than a few.

Of course there will be shipping charges to send this to Amazon, however if you live close to a fulfillment center it won't be too much. Amazon has the best shipping rates in the world. I'm 100 miles from a fulfillment center and to ship a 18" cubed box weighing 25 lbs UPS might cost me $8. Retail that might cost you $30-$40.

I typically only look for items selling for over $15 on Amazon, and I want to make at least $5 profit on each item to make it worth my time. I'll make an exception to this if it is an item I can sell a lot of, like a household good that sells all day long and I can buy as much of it as I want.

The best item is one that is small, light, expensive with a good sales rank. It'll have the lowest FBA fees and will give the best ROI.
I used this exact product as an experiment but seems i couldnt get around the hazmat concerns getting it o amazon. How did you handle this?

When I look up this bluetooth speaker on the Amazon Seller app I don't see it being listed as hazmat. Are you seeing this?

Just verifying i am following the amazon rules and procedure, etc.

The listing on amazon says it requires 2 AAA batteries but the item packaging says rechargeable battery included. So when i go through listing on amazon by adding a product it eventually asks if the item contains a battery etc. and that,s where it gets dicey because I haven't found exactly what kind of battery specifics are within this little speaker.

What do you make of this?

Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: robartsd on May 09, 2018, 09:13:27 AM
Just verifying i am following the amazon rules and procedure, etc.

The listing on amazon says it requires 2 AAA batteries but the item packaging says rechargeable battery included. So when i go through listing on amazon by adding a product it eventually asks if the item contains a battery etc. and that,s where it gets dicey because I haven't found exactly what kind of battery specifics are within this little speaker.

What do you make of this?
The listing also has the size wrong.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on May 09, 2018, 09:47:11 AM
Great info, thank you.

One year later are you still using the online scanning tools and finding they justify the cost?

Now that you sold over 100+ products and you see what sells you mention you just order more to list when your stock runs low. I imagine these are replenishables you found you can buy retail and flip on amazon?

Honestly I haven't had time to mess with Tactical Arbitrage because all my free time has been doing OA and RA replenishables. I keep paying $99/mo for it but each month I ask myself why. It's incredibly powerful, and perhaps once I sell out of my shampoo I'll have some free time to get back to scanning for more replens.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: LiseE on May 09, 2018, 02:56:51 PM
Quote
I keep paying $99/mo for it but each month

$99 a month for what??
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: PhoenixHeat on May 09, 2018, 04:04:11 PM
Quote
I keep paying $99/mo for it but each month

$99 a month for what??
Tactical Arbitrage and online software that helps find profitable product online.

Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on May 09, 2018, 07:46:39 PM
Here's an example of Online Arbitrage:

Insignia Plug-In Bluetooth Speaker
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/insignia-plug-in-bluetooth-speaker-white/8417024.p?skuId=8417024
Sells for $14.99 + tax free shipping

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00WH893JM/
Sells for $34.82 Amazon FBA

Fees: $5.77
Net Profit: $12.81
Profit Margin: 79%

There are 8 other FBA sellers on this item and it sells a few per week so I wouldn't buy more than a few.

Of course there will be shipping charges to send this to Amazon, however if you live close to a fulfillment center it won't be too much. Amazon has the best shipping rates in the world. I'm 100 miles from a fulfillment center and to ship a 18" cubed box weighing 25 lbs UPS might cost me $8. Retail that might cost you $30-$40.

I typically only look for items selling for over $15 on Amazon, and I want to make at least $5 profit on each item to make it worth my time. I'll make an exception to this if it is an item I can sell a lot of, like a household good that sells all day long and I can buy as much of it as I want.

The best item is one that is small, light, expensive with a good sales rank. It'll have the lowest FBA fees and will give the best ROI.
I used this exact product as an experiment but seems i couldnt get around the hazmat concerns getting it o amazon. How did you handle this?

When I look up this bluetooth speaker on the Amazon Seller app I don't see it being listed as hazmat. Are you seeing this?

Just verifying i am following the amazon rules and procedure, etc.

The listing on amazon says it requires 2 AAA batteries but the item packaging says rechargeable battery included. So when i go through listing on amazon by adding a product it eventually asks if the item contains a battery etc. and that,s where it gets dicey because I haven't found exactly what kind of battery specifics are within this little speaker.

What do you make of this?

I've sent in a few electronics with integrated batteries. Frankly I've just made stuff up to fill out the Hazmat form. I don't know how many grams of lithium are in the battery in a Bluetooth speaker. I doubt it's going to cause a warehouse to catch on fire. Do the best you can and make an educated guess about the specifications. If it's a private label product obviously you would be able to provide exact specifications from the manufacturer. For retail/online arbitrage, don't sweat it too much.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Onomatopoeia on May 15, 2018, 07:43:49 AM
This thread has tons of great information, thanks to everyone for sharing!

I am just getting started with FBA with RA and OA. For the next month or so I plan to test the water mostly by scanning items at local stores and selling them through FBA using an individual seller account. Until I see some success, I'm just going to use my personal bank account and I'm not going to worry about setting up any sort of legal entity/corporation. I do want to practice the accounting side of things and I've never done this before. What should I keep track of? For the time being, I prefer to track everything myself using a spreadsheet. Do you keep track of shipping items to Amazon as its own line item, or do you track it at the item level?

Right now I have a spreadsheet with a link to the item on Amazon, the store where I sourced item from, how much I purchased it for, and the date I purchased it. When an item sells, I plan to keep track of the sell price, FBA fee, and profit. Am I missing anything?
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: LiseE on May 17, 2018, 11:25:39 AM
Good luck Onomatopoeia!  I am wanting to do the very same thing so please do share your progress! 
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: L2 on May 21, 2018, 07:29:33 AM
https://twitter.com/jchamseddine10/status/997569339208421383
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: mustache you a question on May 22, 2018, 07:00:12 AM
This thread has tons of great information, thanks to everyone for sharing!

I am just getting started with FBA with RA and OA. For the next month or so I plan to test the water mostly by scanning items at local stores and selling them through FBA using an individual seller account. Until I see some success, I'm just going to use my personal bank account and I'm not going to worry about setting up any sort of legal entity/corporation. I do want to practice the accounting side of things and I've never done this before. What should I keep track of? For the time being, I prefer to track everything myself using a spreadsheet. Do you keep track of shipping items to Amazon as its own line item, or do you track it at the item level?

Right now I have a spreadsheet with a link to the item on Amazon, the store where I sourced item from, how much I purchased it for, and the date I purchased it. When an item sells, I plan to keep track of the sell price, FBA fee, and profit. Am I missing anything?

That's a pretty good start.  Keep track of how long it takes from date posted to date sold.  It'll show you higher velocity items that you can focus on when you see a good deal.  Also, keep track of your invested time.  You want to make sure you are paying yourself a good hourly wage for all this work!
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: PhoenixHeat on May 22, 2018, 08:54:27 AM
This thread has tons of great information, thanks to everyone for sharing!

I am just getting started with FBA with RA and OA. For the next month or so I plan to test the water mostly by scanning items at local stores and selling them through FBA using an individual seller account. Until I see some success, I'm just going to use my personal bank account and I'm not going to worry about setting up any sort of legal entity/corporation. I do want to practice the accounting side of things and I've never done this before. What should I keep track of? For the time being, I prefer to track everything myself using a spreadsheet. Do you keep track of shipping items to Amazon as its own line item, or do you track it at the item level?

Right now I have a spreadsheet with a link to the item on Amazon, the store where I sourced item from, how much I purchased it for, and the date I purchased it. When an item sells, I plan to keep track of the sell price, FBA fee, and profit. Am I missing anything?

That's a pretty good start.  Keep track of how long it takes from date posted to date sold.  It'll show you higher velocity items that you can focus on when you see a good deal.  Also, keep track of your invested time.  You want to make sure you are paying yourself a good hourly wage for all this work!

I think if you want to get started you have to be prepared to put the time in especially in the beginning. There is a learning curve in a lot of things and it may not always be reasonable to make a high hourly wage starting out for your time investment.  I wouldn't let that be a deterrent though early on if your sights are set on learning the ropes and eventually growing and creating a business.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: John Galt 512 on June 02, 2018, 05:12:32 PM
Has anybody that is doing Amazon FBA been asked for Safety Data Sheets (SDS) for an item they bought at a retail store?  I ask because that is the pickle I'm in and need to find a way to provide this so that I can ship these two items (not hazardous) to Amazon.  Any help is appreciated.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: PhoenixHeat on June 03, 2018, 07:36:55 AM
Has anybody that is doing Amazon FBA been asked for Safety Data Sheets (SDS) for an item they bought at a retail store?  I ask because that is the pickle I'm in and need to find a way to provide this so that I can ship these two items (not hazardous) to Amazon.  Any help is appreciated.

I don't know if I have been asked directly for the safety data sheets but I think this is what I ran into when trying to list the insignia speaker I mentioned earlier in this thread. Because I didn't/couldn't locate he exact information I decided to pass on the listing. I now pass on items with batteries or things that could throw the hazmat questions if that makes sense.

I would think you tried searching the web for the SDS already and that would be my suggestion if that is the route you are going down. Hope this helps!
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on June 05, 2018, 09:06:15 PM
I've tapered off in the last month. I'd found a profitable brand of shampoo and conditioners to sell that I could buy for about $13 and sell for $30 - a profit of about $7-9 per pair. Unfortunately I sent in a decent size shipment and did not put a "sold as set" sticker on the poly bag. Consequently Amazon managed to check-in 35 unites when I had only sent 20 because they must have purposely split up nearly every single one (WHY WOULD YOU OPEN THE BAG WHEN THEY ARE OBVIOUSLY BUNDLED AS A SET?). Consequently I received numerous complaints and 1-star seller feedback because people were only receiving part of the set. Luckily I was able to get all of the negative feedback crossed out and not counted because "This order was fulfilled by Amazon". A bunch of refunds later I still made money off the shipment but it was quite a mess. Since then about 15 other sellers have jumped on the listing and driven the price down to about $20 so it's not even profitable.

My wife has been very opposed to me spending time on this with everything else I've got going on so I'm probably going to downgrade from the professional seller plan soon and just keep my few remaining listings active as FBM.

When all is said and done I'll probably end up with a total profit of $500 +/-. I could certainly ramp things up with some local groceries items as I found a local wholesaler and some profitable items - some of which would require some semi-custom packaging (i.e. glass jars of salsa). But, it's hard to justify the time involved when I could work an hour of overtime and make $40.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Cwadda on June 06, 2018, 06:42:39 PM
Has anybody that is doing Amazon FBA been asked for Safety Data Sheets (SDS) for an item they bought at a retail store?  I ask because that is the pickle I'm in and need to find a way to provide this so that I can ship these two items (not hazardous) to Amazon.  Any help is appreciated.

I wouldn't bother jumping though the hoops if you found the item in store. You would have to contact the manufacturer which would then start raising questions, I'd imagine. You might be better off just selling them FBM.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Cali on June 07, 2018, 12:25:12 AM
Thanks for this info, I’m learning as well.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: John Galt 512 on June 11, 2018, 07:15:26 AM
Has anybody that is doing Amazon FBA been asked for Safety Data Sheets (SDS) for an item they bought at a retail store?  I ask because that is the pickle I'm in and need to find a way to provide this so that I can ship these two items (not hazardous) to Amazon.  Any help is appreciated.

I don't know if I have been asked directly for the safety data sheets but I think this is what I ran into when trying to list the insignia speaker I mentioned earlier in this thread. Because I didn't/couldn't locate he exact information I decided to pass on the listing. I now pass on items with batteries or things that could throw the hazmat questions if that makes sense.

I would think you tried searching the web for the SDS already and that would be my suggestion if that is the route you are going down. Hope this helps!

I ended up talking to a buddy that runs a pool supply selling business on Amazon and he said that it's nearly impossible to get around this without having the manufacture change the UPC code to reflect the product as non hazmat.  So like everyone else I'm staying away from hazmat items or items with batteries.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: John Galt 512 on June 11, 2018, 07:21:57 AM
I recently bought an item to sell via FBA that when scanned had great movement numbers (1-2 a day via Keepa) and a great score via AMZME at a selling price of $109.  Now that Amazon has received it they put the item in a different listing that has a used version (for $75) in the buy box and a higher selling price for prime ($149). So when I go into Amazon as a consumer and look up the $109 listing my product listing is not there.  My product listing is in a much less desirable listing, same product though! Has anyone had this happen to them? 
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on June 11, 2018, 09:36:58 AM
Has anybody that is doing Amazon FBA been asked for Safety Data Sheets (SDS) for an item they bought at a retail store?  I ask because that is the pickle I'm in and need to find a way to provide this so that I can ship these two items (not hazardous) to Amazon.  Any help is appreciated.

I've contacted the manufacturer on multiple occasions and received a SDS from them. I never get any questions as to why I'm asking.

Sometimes it doesn't work out, say if the SDS is old, Amazon won't accept it. But it's worth a shot.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on June 21, 2018, 09:56:38 PM
I'm winding down my Amazon FBA side hustle as I don't really have even the minimal time it takes. Two jobs and five kids doesn't leave much room for starting and running a business.

However, I'm going to provide a decent opportunity for retail/online arbitrage for anyone who wants to jump on it. If you take advantage of this I ask that you use the referral link in my signature and get yourself a free share of stock (as well as a free share for me) by signing up for the Robinhood app. Obviously if multiple people take advantage of this at the same time the arbitrage opportunity will eventually go away but for someone who's looking to move up from one-off clearance items this is a decent example of what's out there.

I found a brand of shampoo and conditioner that is selling alright on Amazon, BR÷÷. They have four different varieties of shampoo and conditioner (plus some other related beauty products). The sets of these have sales ranks averaging around 60,000 to 100,000 which translate to monthly sales of 15-30 per month or so. A couple of these are carried at Walmart's and sell for around $6-7 per bottle. I had been selling all four as bundles and doing pretty well for a few months but I had a bunch of issues because I did not include a label/sticker marking them "sold as set". Because of this, when I sent a large shipment in to the Baltimore warehouse they opened up the poly bags I had packaged them in and 10+ orders were fulfilled with just a single shampoor or conditioner instead of the set. Amazon reimbursed me for some but still, I messed up by not including that label and had to spend a lot of time getting negative feedback removed and responding to complaints.

Since then the most popular variety has seen a bunch of other sellers jump on the listing and the price has been driven down to breakeven. However, one of the varities is still selling about 20 units per month at around $30 with just a couple of other sellers - none of whom have more than a handful of units in stock.

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01DUY3M2U

Here is a link to an online seller https://www.iherb.com/pr/BR-Invigorating-Shampoo-Malted-Mint-8-5-fl-oz-250-ml/66022 and https://www.iherb.com/pr/BR-Invigorating-Conditioner-Malted-Mint-8-5-fl-oz-250-ml/66023

The price drops to $6.29 each if you order a dozen or more. They offer $5 off on your first order with coupon code APPS2018. They are also offering a coupon code for 11% off for the next couple of days (referral link) https://www.iherb.com/?pcode=WCELEVEN&rcode=AHP8153 

So if you were to order a dozen of each with that 11% off and free shipping your cost would be a little more than $11 per bundle. You will also need poly bags to put the shampoo and conditioner in (plus the sold as set label/sticker). I purchased this set https://www.amazon.com/Clear-Poly-Combo-Suffocation-Warning/dp/B01DLIRW8K and the smallest 6"x9" bags worked fine https://www.amazon.com/Clear-Poly-Combo-Suffocation-Warning/dp/B01ESFYDSC?th=1 You will also need to print labels to put over the UPC barcodes and I would recommend a single label on one barcode with your FNSKU and a second blank label over the other barcode. I think because I put FNSKU barcodes on each in one shipment it caused the warehouse workers to treat it as two items instead of one.

So with labels and poly bags being only pennies each your cost of goods sold will be less than $12. If you ship this into Amazon FBA your inbound shipping will probably be around $0.50 per unit bringing your total COGS to about $12. The fulfillment costs at a price point of $30 are a bit more than $9. So, if you can sell this bundle for $30 with a total cost of about $21-22 your profit is about $8-9. As I said, this particular variety is selling about 20 units per month according to keepa.com which means a potential profit of $170 a month give or take.

Good luck.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: PhoenixHeat on June 26, 2018, 04:51:20 AM
I'm winding down my Amazon FBA side hustle as I don't really have even the minimal time it takes. Two jobs and five kids doesn't leave much room for starting and running a business.

However, I'm going to provide a decent opportunity for retail/online arbitrage for anyone who wants to jump on it. If you take advantage of this I ask that you use the referral link in my signature and get yourself a free share of stock (as well as a free share for me) by signing up for the Robinhood app. Obviously if multiple people take advantage of this at the same time the arbitrage opportunity will eventually go away but for someone who's looking to move up from one-off clearance items this is a decent example of what's out there.

I found a brand of shampoo and conditioner that is selling alright on Amazon, BR÷÷. They have four different varieties of shampoo and conditioner (plus some other related beauty products). The sets of these have sales ranks averaging around 60,000 to 100,000 which translate to monthly sales of 15-30 per month or so. A couple of these are carried at Walmart's and sell for around $6-7 per bottle. I had been selling all four as bundles and doing pretty well for a few months but I had a bunch of issues because I did not include a label/sticker marking them "sold as set". Because of this, when I sent a large shipment in to the Baltimore warehouse they opened up the poly bags I had packaged them in and 10+ orders were fulfilled with just a single shampoor or conditioner instead of the set. Amazon reimbursed me for some but still, I messed up by not including that label and had to spend a lot of time getting negative feedback removed and responding to complaints.

Since then the most popular variety has seen a bunch of other sellers jump on the listing and the price has been driven down to breakeven. However, one of the varities is still selling about 20 units per month at around $30 with just a couple of other sellers - none of whom have more than a handful of units in stock.

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01DUY3M2U

Here is a link to an online seller https://www.iherb.com/pr/BR-Invigorating-Shampoo-Malted-Mint-8-5-fl-oz-250-ml/66022 and https://www.iherb.com/pr/BR-Invigorating-Conditioner-Malted-Mint-8-5-fl-oz-250-ml/66023

The price drops to $6.29 each if you order a dozen or more. They offer $5 off on your first order with coupon code APPS2018. They are also offering a coupon code for 11% off for the next couple of days (referral link) https://www.iherb.com/?pcode=WCELEVEN&rcode=AHP8153 

So if you were to order a dozen of each with that 11% off and free shipping your cost would be a little more than $11 per bundle. You will also need poly bags to put the shampoo and conditioner in (plus the sold as set label/sticker). I purchased this set https://www.amazon.com/Clear-Poly-Combo-Suffocation-Warning/dp/B01DLIRW8K and the smallest 6"x9" bags worked fine https://www.amazon.com/Clear-Poly-Combo-Suffocation-Warning/dp/B01ESFYDSC?th=1 You will also need to print labels to put over the UPC barcodes and I would recommend a single label on one barcode with your FNSKU and a second blank label over the other barcode. I think because I put FNSKU barcodes on each in one shipment it caused the warehouse workers to treat it as two items instead of one.

So with labels and poly bags being only pennies each your cost of goods sold will be less than $12. If you ship this into Amazon FBA your inbound shipping will probably be around $0.50 per unit bringing your total COGS to about $12. The fulfillment costs at a price point of $30 are a bit more than $9. So, if you can sell this bundle for $30 with a total cost of about $21-22 your profit is about $8-9. As I said, this particular variety is selling about 20 units per month according to keepa.com which means a potential profit of $170 a month give or take.

Good luck.

restricted from Topicals..otherwise thank you.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: FIRE_Wannabe on July 04, 2018, 04:27:28 AM
Can items bought at Walmart for RA be listed as new? I've seen conflicting answers on this.  It seems people list these as new all the time.  Also if you had to list as used it seems it wouldn't be profitable at that point. 
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: kpetar on July 04, 2018, 04:50:08 AM
Can items bought at Walmart for RA be listed as new? I've seen conflicting answers on this.  It seems people list these as new all the time.  Also if you had to list as used it seems it wouldn't be profitable at that point.

No, you can not. Amazon restricts who can list an item as "New". You need to be an authorized reseller becasue you're unable to transfer the manufacturer's warranty to customers.
If you want play by the rules lists those items as "Like-New".
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Michael in ABQ on July 04, 2018, 10:39:48 AM
Can items bought at Walmart for RA be listed as new? I've seen conflicting answers on this.  It seems people list these as new all the time.  Also if you had to list as used it seems it wouldn't be profitable at that point.

I've listed such items as new. At a certain point though you will probably run into some issues. Frankly RA is a good way to get your feet wet but I think for the long-term its not sustainable. You could get complaints for "used sold as new". Now if it's something that's in perfect condition from a store shelf you'll probably be ok. If it's a clearance items where the packaging is even slightly damaged you are probably better off marking it as like new or trying to sell it on eBay. Amazon buyers expect new products to be in perfect condition. eBay buyers are generally less discerning. If it's anything where a warranty would matter (i.e. electronics) then that's where you're taking greater risk. If it's something where a warranty doesn't exist or is essentially meaningless (i.e. cheap consumer product) then I doubt that issue will ever come up.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on July 05, 2018, 11:33:28 AM
The only time I care about not setting an item as new is when Amazon restricts me from doing it (as in a bunch of Roku Premier's I found on clearance at WalMart), the item is obviously not new, or I can't provide an itemized receipt for the purchase. Some liquidation stores don't put the detail on the receipt, so if you ever get claim that the item is inauthentic, you can't provide proof that you purchased it legitimately.

For the Roku Premier, I sold those things 'like new' for a few bucks less than 'new' and they flew off the shelf.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: PhoenixHeat on July 05, 2018, 02:42:03 PM
The only time I care about not setting an item as new is when Amazon restricts me from doing it (as in a bunch of Roku Premier's I found on clearance at WalMart), the item is obviously not new, or I can't provide an itemized receipt for the purchase. Some liquidation stores don't put the detail on the receipt, so if you ever get claim that the item is inauthentic, you can't provide proof that you purchased it legitimately.

For the Roku Premier, I sold those things 'like new' for a few bucks less than 'new' and they flew off the shelf.

This is a good suggestion to get around restricted items in New condition to sell as like new if still profitable. Like others, if the seller app says New is restricted i wont sell it. If it says I can sell the item in New condition then that is what i do.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: evme on July 29, 2018, 03:00:43 AM
Amazon recently announced some changes to their longterm storage fee (LTSF) structure which makes FBA much less appealing if you are selling slow-moving items.

From Amazon -- "Minimum Long-Term Storage Fees: On August 15, 2018, we will introduce a minimum charge of $0.50 per unit per month for items in fulfillment centers for 365 days or more."

Previously they charged LTSF twice a year -- Feb 15th and Aug 15th. Now they are charging LTSFs 12 times a year, on the 15th of each month.

As an example, say you have 200 items that are subject to the LTSF, that means a MINIMUM fee of $100 a month until those items sell. It's a huge fee increase from their previous structure. I predict prices will drop a lot for some items as sellers rush to unload inventory that is suddenly a much bigger liability in the form of monthly LTSF.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on August 02, 2018, 02:33:16 PM
Amazon recently announced some changes to their longterm storage fee (LTSF) structure which makes FBA much less appealing if you are selling slow-moving items.

From Amazon -- "Minimum Long-Term Storage Fees: On August 15, 2018, we will introduce a minimum charge of $0.50 per unit per month for items in fulfillment centers for 365 days or more."

Previously they charged LTSF twice a year -- Feb 15th and Aug 15th. Now they are charging LTSFs 12 times a year, on the 15th of each month.

As an example, say you have 200 items that are subject to the LTSF, that means a MINIMUM fee of $100 a month until those items sell. It's a huge fee increase from their previous structure. I predict prices will drop a lot for some items as sellers rush to unload inventory that is suddenly a much bigger liability in the form of monthly LTSF.

One of the reasons I got out of selling used books on Amazon.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: hodedofome on August 02, 2018, 02:35:22 PM
I'm winding down my Amazon FBA side hustle as I don't really have even the minimal time it takes. Two jobs and five kids doesn't leave much room for starting and running a business.

However, I'm going to provide a decent opportunity for retail/online arbitrage for anyone who wants to jump on it. If you take advantage of this I ask that you use the referral link in my signature and get yourself a free share of stock (as well as a free share for me) by signing up for the Robinhood app. Obviously if multiple people take advantage of this at the same time the arbitrage opportunity will eventually go away but for someone who's looking to move up from one-off clearance items this is a decent example of what's out there.

I found a brand of shampoo and conditioner that is selling alright on Amazon, BR÷÷. They have four different varieties of shampoo and conditioner (plus some other related beauty products). The sets of these have sales ranks averaging around 60,000 to 100,000 which translate to monthly sales of 15-30 per month or so. A couple of these are carried at Walmart's and sell for around $6-7 per bottle. I had been selling all four as bundles and doing pretty well for a few months but I had a bunch of issues because I did not include a label/sticker marking them "sold as set". Because of this, when I sent a large shipment in to the Baltimore warehouse they opened up the poly bags I had packaged them in and 10+ orders were fulfilled with just a single shampoor or conditioner instead of the set. Amazon reimbursed me for some but still, I messed up by not including that label and had to spend a lot of time getting negative feedback removed and responding to complaints.

Since then the most popular variety has seen a bunch of other sellers jump on the listing and the price has been driven down to breakeven. However, one of the varities is still selling about 20 units per month at around $30 with just a couple of other sellers - none of whom have more than a handful of units in stock.

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01DUY3M2U

Here is a link to an online seller https://www.iherb.com/pr/BR-Invigorating-Shampoo-Malted-Mint-8-5-fl-oz-250-ml/66022 and https://www.iherb.com/pr/BR-Invigorating-Conditioner-Malted-Mint-8-5-fl-oz-250-ml/66023

The price drops to $6.29 each if you order a dozen or more. They offer $5 off on your first order with coupon code APPS2018. They are also offering a coupon code for 11% off for the next couple of days (referral link) https://www.iherb.com/?pcode=WCELEVEN&rcode=AHP8153 

So if you were to order a dozen of each with that 11% off and free shipping your cost would be a little more than $11 per bundle. You will also need poly bags to put the shampoo and conditioner in (plus the sold as set label/sticker). I purchased this set https://www.amazon.com/Clear-Poly-Combo-Suffocation-Warning/dp/B01DLIRW8K and the smallest 6"x9" bags worked fine https://www.amazon.com/Clear-Poly-Combo-Suffocation-Warning/dp/B01ESFYDSC?th=1 You will also need to print labels to put over the UPC barcodes and I would recommend a single label on one barcode with your FNSKU and a second blank label over the other barcode. I think because I put FNSKU barcodes on each in one shipment it caused the warehouse workers to treat it as two items instead of one.

So with labels and poly bags being only pennies each your cost of goods sold will be less than $12. If you ship this into Amazon FBA your inbound shipping will probably be around $0.50 per unit bringing your total COGS to about $12. The fulfillment costs at a price point of $30 are a bit more than $9. So, if you can sell this bundle for $30 with a total cost of about $21-22 your profit is about $8-9. As I said, this particular variety is selling about 20 units per month according to keepa.com which means a potential profit of $170 a month give or take.

Good luck.

FYI, the price on this is $21.99 now...such is the risk of selling on Amazon. It's now a losing opportunity if you're buying from iHerb.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: Mustache ride on January 03, 2019, 07:26:30 PM
Is this still a profitable venture for most? I did significant research about 6 months ago and never pulled the trigger on FBA. I half-ass tried and listed stuff around the house for FBM, but didn't get any sales so I took all the stuff off, or at least I thought. It turns out my items were never removed and I got an email last week saying I sold a textbook. Luckily I was able to find the box I stuffed it in during the move and shipped it out. I'm now intrigued to make the jump this time into FBA as I have a bit more free time for the next few months. Curious to know if this is still viable for the little guy without experience.
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: tralfamadorian on January 03, 2019, 08:23:36 PM
For most? Probably not. But if you have a product(s) that either 1) you have access to which is otherwise difficult to procure or 2) you get a better price that your competitors, then, yes, Amazon is still a great market. Fees are high and continue to rise so making sure you have an excellent margin is necessary.

I've never found online or in store retail arbitrage to be worthwhile (for me). It's always been products that came up in unrelated conversations mostly in niches. "It's such a shame that such and such isn't made anymore. That easy to replicate dodad was awesome!" "Why is popular niche $30 item only sold on third party's ugly website with $25 UPS shipping? I wish I could just buy it on Amazon."
Title: Re: Selling on Amazon Prime via fulfillment (Amazon FBA) - Anyone try this?
Post by: evme on January 03, 2019, 08:52:32 PM
Is this still a profitable venture for most? I did significant research about 6 months ago and never pulled the trigger on FBA. I half-ass tried and listed stuff around the house for FBM, but didn't get any sales so I took all the stuff off, or at least I thought. It turns out my items were never removed and I got an email last week saying I sold a textbook. Luckily I was able to find the box I stuffed it in during the move and shipped it out. I'm now intrigued to make the jump this time into FBA as I have a bit more free time for the next few months. Curious to know if this is still viable for the little guy without experience.

Not recommended at this time, especially FBA. Some states have started to claim that having inventory at a FBA warehouse in another state constitutes "nexus" and means you are responsible for collecting/remitting sales tax in states where your FBA inventory is stored. It's a mess. This is changing somewhat with marketplace facilitator laws which require marketplaces like amazon/ebay/walmart/etc to do the collection and remittance of sales tax for third-party sellers. So far I believe there are eight states where amazon is doing it, and I expect this number to increase greatly over the next year, but until the dust settles I would absolutely NOT recommend FBA. Also, in general amazon is increasingly plagued by review manipulation, search ranking manipulation, and other issues. Unless you have a niche product to sell, it's increasingly a losers game.