Why would a high paying Engineer leave his job to do Amazon full time? Why would a CPA working at one of the largest Firms be planning early retirement to work doing fulfillment? Why would people all over be working massively hard, exhausting themselves finding product to sell on Amazon? Easy, the money is better than any job you could get and for many that is the only motivation they need
Today I thought I would provide some information for those out there that might be considering opening an Amazon store, otherwise known as Amazon FBA (fulfillment by Amazon). (You send product to their warehouse and it is sold on Amazon and shipped by Amazon).
If you have never heard of Amazon FBA it is a totally legit way to be making $10,000 to $500,000 a month and there are a lot of people using it to make extra money and then some do it full time.
There are two ways you can approach Amazon FBA. Both you typically want to open with an LLC in place, although you can start and sell as an individual. Then that is where similarities end and there are really two types of businesses based upon the product they offer:
- Own your product. This is where you choose a product that you know will sell on Amazon based off of collected data using a service like “Jungle Scout” that will tell you what the best products to improve upon are and what products would be great to sell.
- You then have to work with a supplier, communicate the changes you want to the product, request samples and eventually choose a supplier. You also have to make sure they have certain certifications in place such as FDA approval. (If you choose a supplier in China make sure you go extra lengths to make sure you have FDA approval and that Amazon approves of all materials or your product may never make it into the US). Your logo is added to the product and it becomes your brand.
- Once you buy the product, is then shipped directly to Amazon Fulfillment and the only thing that needs to happen is people like it and buy it.
- Find product and build up your inventory over time. This is where you find discounted products out there at regular stores, garage sales and using services like eflips. You buy the product and then you manually enter it into Amazon and you ship it to the fulfillment center. This is a much more manual labor intensive route but you also don’t have to have your own product if you don’t find something you want to sell.
I recently decided to open my own Amazon store because I already sell things on ebay and I enjoy knowing that I could make money at any time based upon my own hard work. It’s like having that extra assurance that if you need a few thousand dollars you can get it if you are willing to do the work. I may only do it for a short time to see how it works for me and I may end up eventually having my own product.
I am going the #2 route for now, simply because after looking at the data the products to choose from seemed to compromise my brand rather than support it for what is popular at the moment. So I have decided to focus on selling books since I love books. Yes this does mean you are out there getting product from all over the place, then coming home and entering them into Amazon and then shipping them off (which is the hustle) but I figured if it was books I really wouldn’t mind so much.
To start it isn’t as easy as just opening an account. You have to enter all your business information, bank information, verify your information and wait for approval. Then you have to make sure you get a sales tax permit for your state. If you want to sell in a certain category you have to request to be cleared to do so. In order to be cleared you not only have to show you have purchased a certain amount of inventory but you also have to give the quantities you plan to sell each month. Yes, there is a lot of red tape to walk through and you won’t necessarily get to sell just anything.
In my process to learn how to do all of this I came across some really helpful videos on YouTube which you can watch below if you would like to learn more detail on having your own product and selling it.
- Launching a $40 Kitchen Product (includes all steps to getting your own product) https://youtu.be/cGJd0kQVoZs
- Learn about Jungle Scout https://youtu.be/Hj0nJ4tw-Tw
I'll let you know just how successful I am at my store and if I am able to hit any of the numbers they claim you can hit. Is it realistic for me to do? This has not yet been answered yet but I will let you know! Everyone has to choose what is best for them individually, but it is an opportunity. But at least for some they are happy they make thousands a month even if it is a lot of hard work.