The fantastic thing about Amazon is that anyone can open an online shop and become profitable. It’s a boundless, level playing field for entrepreneurs with thrilling possibilities. These things are worth celebrating, but, as any Amazon seller can attest to, not every day is a party. Most online entrepreneurs have faced lagging sales, customer service headaches, and inventory that just won’t sell.
Here are a few Q&As to help you work through some of the most menacing Amazon sales issues.
Q: Amazon has restricted the category that I want to sell in. Now what?
A: All is not lost. Amazon tends to restrict selling categories where there is a high potential for shoddy or counterfeit products. These include beauty, fine jewelry, collectible books and coins, fine art, groceries, and wine. Getting approval is tricky but not impossible. And once you break in, you’ll be entering a market with far fewer competitors than other categories.
Q: Is it worth selling products that are ineligible for Fulfillment by Amazon?
A: That all depends on the profit margin. FBA makes selling easy and frees you from the minutia of your business so that you can focus on bigger issues. Amazon will store your merchandise and pack and ship your orders. They also offer 24/7 customer support for your customers in the languages of your chosen marketplaces. Amazon bars items from FBA if they are hazardous, dangerous, FBA-prohibited, or just simply too hard to ship. Before you give up on an item, reach out to seller support. Some products may be working their way through the review process and be just a few weeks away from eligibility. If the support team gives you an emphatic no, you can always opt for merchant fulfillment, but make sure that you will be earning enough of a profit to make it worth the headaches.
Q: What should I do if Amazon starts to compete against me?
A: The good news is that if Amazon jumps into your sales niche, you probably picked a winner. Amazon tends to add “sold by Amazon” products to compete against items that are selling extremely well or those that are typically low quality. This means that your product is really popular or that it has a big chance of standing out against a field of low-quality alternatives. The bad news is that Amazon has unbeatable seller metrics, so they’ll virtually always get the Buy Box. Don’t give up if a “sold by Amazon” product enters the fray, but to stand out, you’ll need to beat the price of the Amazon item or aim to outlast their inventory.
For help from the experts, sign up to attend the next Prosper Show conference. Our Amazon marketplace conferences feature workshops from some of the most well-known movers-and-shakers in the online selling industry.
Selling online, in spite of its potential, does not exclude any business aspirants from problems and limitations that can hurdle maximum growth. However, if you already knew what these possible problems, you can prepare for it and initiate strategies to minimize its impact on your business. This infographic presents three of the most common problems faced by Amazon sellers.