This week, Amazon confirmed rumors of a second Prime Day-like sales event titled the Prime Early Access Sale with a press release announcing the event. As previously reported, the Prime Early Access Sale will take place for 48 hours on October 11th and 12th.
The Prime Early Access Sale marks the first time the e-commerce superpower will hold two major sales events in one calendar year. However, it’s not the first time Amazon has held a major sales event in October, as Prime Day 2020 took place from October 13th to 14th after being pushed back from its usual July date as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
After years of wondering if or when Amazon would look to go beyond Prime Day for annual sales holidays, the Early Access Sale appears to answer those questions. But what exactly is the Prime Early Access Sale, and what can Amazon sellers expect?
Part Prime Day, Part Black Friday?
Perhaps the most notable part of the announcement outside of the announcement itself, is it appears to serve as a kickoff for the quickly approaching holiday season.
“We are so excited to help Prime members kick off the holiday season with Amazon’s new Prime Early Access Sale—an exclusive opportunity for members to get deep discounts on top brands we know they are looking for this time of year. And members can start enjoying exclusive Prime benefits and offers now, plus find gift ideas for the family with our holiday gift guides and this year’s Toys We Love list.”
Jamil Ghani, vice president of Amazon Prime
A significant chunk of the press release focuses on kicking off the holiday season with access to thousands of deals exclusively for Prime members. While Black Friday has long served as the unofficial beginning of the hectic holiday season, the Prime Early Access Sale seeks to get the party started six weeks before Black Friday.
Additionally, shopping for the holidays a little earlier this year may have additional benefits beyond saving a few bucks during the promotional period. Due to the uncertainty brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic and ensuing supply chain disruption that continues to have ripple effects, crossing items off your shopping checklist over a longer period helps smooth out the always-chaotic holiday blitz starting on Black Friday and lasting for weeks.
More Money, More Benefits
This year, Amazon announced a price hike for the first time in years for their signature Prime subscription for customers, with rates going from $13 per month to $15, and $119 annually to $139.
The Prime Early Access Sale indicates the subscription’s price hike comes with additional benefits, so the roughly 160 million Amazon Prime subscribers get more bang while spending more bucks.
One of the most ballyhooed benefits recently added to the Prime membership is GrubHub+, with rewards and savings on the popular food delivery service. While this may not appear like news for Amazon sellers, the additional benefits outside of the Amazon marketplace for Prime members only makes the consumer base grow even larger. With benefits such as the aforementioned GrubHub+, Audible, Prime Video, Amazon Music Unlimited and countless more perks, the Prime membership base is strong and strengthens the Amazon marketplace further.
Full Steam Ahead Into 2023
Although the event’s existence had been hinted about, the official announcement adds intrigue to what should be an interesting Q4. After two years of uncertainty and constant disruption, things are as close to “normal” as they’ve been in years.
While concerns about consumer spending linger internationally, the Prime Early Access Sale and subsequent holiday season provide a worthy source of optimism for Amazon sellers looking to close out 2022 on a positive note.
Even if the time for you to prepare for the Prime Early Access Sale is ticking, it goes without saying that sellers should not shrug off tactics to maximize visibility and sales during a period of skyrocketing sales.
Because it’s the first-ever Prime Early Access Sale, it’s difficult to know what to expect. However, if Prime Day is any indicator, this has the potential to be absolutely massive.
For Prime-eligible products, sellers can submit a Prime Exclusive Discount or Coupon before October 11, 2022 to participate in the Prime Early Access Sale.
Any measure sellers can take to put their product in a position for success should be taken, as a wave of sales during the event is sure to put you in *ahem* prime position to ride a wave of sales through the holiday season.
Consider what quick opportunities you can take to refine your business, from pricing to your product description to advertising. Now is the perfect time to check out tools like Competitor Intelligence, Viral Launch’s tool that gives you unparalleled insight into your competition so you can out-smart the competition and stop leaving dollars on the table.
Are you getting started on Amazon or thinking about launching your own online business? We spoke with Ecom Dave to discuss how to kickstart an Amazon business in 2021 and how to avoid common mistakes that get in the way.
Over the past 18 months or so, the Amazon marketplace has made plenty of waves. Whether it’s been about record-setting numbers, expansion into new countries, or competitors such as Shopify or Walmart looking to duplicate its success, there’s plenty of buzz on the topic. Here are some tips to getting started on amazon.
To anyone who likes making money (and who doesn’t?), this may seem like your signal to get in on the action. There’s plenty of opportunity on Amazon and the industry is still growing rapidly.
But before jumping in headfirst, there are plenty of considerations to make.
As with most things that go through massively evolving growth, things change quickly. As recently as 5 or 10 years ago, just starting an Amazon business may have been enough to fast track your success.
With a more mature marketplace, new sellers must enter more strategically than in the past.
That’s why we spoke with Ecom Dave, a superstar seller and seller mentor in the Amazon community. He takes us through his journey as a seller, how Amazon has evolved over the years, and how sellers can build their business the right way.
Tune in to the whole conversation for a free-flowing conversation packed with plenty of helpful Amazon tidbits!
Get to know Ecom Dave and his experience with e-commerce. (0:00)
If you aren’t familiar with Ecom Dave, take a second to learn his fascinating journey from bartending and failing at his first attempt at selling on Amazon to launch a successful online business and becoming one of the biggest names in the Amazon seller community.
What mistakes are the new wave of Amazon sellers making? (9:31)
When learning a new skill, knowing what not to do can be as critical as knowing what to do. Steering clear of common missteps can make the difference between a dud and a stud, with thousands of dollars at stake. Dave walks us through his process and thinking while assisting new sellers and where many are going wrong.
How getting started on amazon impacted Dave’s lifestyle? (13:25)
Let’s be real. Most of us don’t work because we love the work. We work to afford the best lifestyle we want.
One of the main allures of selling on Amazon is the ability to be your own boss, build your business, and live the life you’ve always wanted. That’s certainly the case for Dave, who walks us through his daily routine compared to before he began selling on Amazon.
Dave walks us through what aspects he believes have personally contributed to his Amazon business? (22:10)
A seller’s mentality at approaching their business plays a tremendous factor in the outcome of the business. When running your own business, your business’s success or failure and overall imprint becomes inescapably related to person running it.
The Amazon seller community is quite diverse in terms of mentality and approach, so while there certainly is no “one-size-fits-all” mentality, each person’s strengths or weaknesses can make an impact on their business. Getting started on amazon can have a large impact. Dave explains how his personality and experiences played a role in his ultimate success.
Before we say goodbye, Dave offers some final advice for Amazon sellers who are kicking off their FBA careers. (27:00)
If we were to dive into all the aspects that go into selling, the Follow The Data podcast would be longer than an episode of the Joe Rogan show. So before the conclusion of this conversation, we asked Dave what other tips or topics he’d like to cover that hadn’t been covered already.
A huge thanks to Dave for taking the time to share his valuable expertise. For more tips and tricks to starting and succeeding on Amazon, check out his website! You can also connect with Dave on Instagram, LinkedIn, and Facebook.
As always, drop your email below to receive the latest Amazon seller news and updates!
As the largest and latest round of stimulus checks make their way into bank accounts across the USA, we take a look into how you can use it as an investment into your business.
According to the IRS, about 90 million Americans were sent their $1,400 stimulus checks on Wednesday alone, with more to be sent in the coming weeks.
The newfound financial flexibility creates opportunities previously not afforded for those fortunate enough to receive the $1,400 as “extra” money. One popular way to view the stimulus check is as an avenue into investing, but investing isn’t limited to stocks.
Instead of investing in another company, why not invest in your own?
Whether you’re a longtime seller, beginner, or considering leaping into FBA, there are plenty of ways to rejuvenate or jumpstart your Amazon business with $1,400. By investing in your e-commerce business, you could easily turn your stimulus check into a long-term money-making machine.
We should mention this isn’t necessarily a guide. Every seller’s journey is different. The options we’ll highlight below are merely a few options you may want to consider. With prudent planning, these options present a promising opportunity for you to get a great return on investment from your stimulus check.
Without further ado, let’s dive into it!
Elevate Your Product Research Game
When it comes to selling on Amazon (and in most aspects of life), having the luxury of reliable data to base your decisions on is a tremendous luxury. For Amazon sellers, this is made possible through product research.
Whether you’ve yet to begin your FBA journey or have a catalog full of successful products, product research is crucial for sustained profitability. When you have access to comprehensive market data, it’s almost like having the answers to a test.
While reliable Amazon sales data is crucial at all stages, it’s especially vital for beginners. The research that goes into deciding upon your first product serves as a foundational aspect of your Amazon career. Choosing to source and sell a product without conducting intensive research with data you can trust is a surefire way to make your first product your last product.
So if you’re beginning to look into FBA, test out a few software providers. Most software providers will offer a free trial, giving you time to see if they’re right for you.
Feel free to test trials from different software providers simultaneously to compare and contrast the data. If you notice any inconsistencies, don’t be shy. Ask their customer service team how they arrive at their numbers. With such an important decision that can pay off handsomely, don’t leave any stones unturned.
Aspiring Amazon entrepreneurs aren’t the only ones who can take their product research game up a notch. Often, Amazon sellers don’t utilize all tools within their toolset.
Whether there are underutilized tools in your current software plan or an opportunity to upgrade your plan for additional access, there’s no better time than now to explore unfamiliar tools. Amazon is constantly evolving, so sellers must evolve with it.
Boost Your Business with Captivating Creatives
It’s springtime! You know what that means. Spring cleaning!
For Amazon sellers, the seasonal cleaning isn’t limited to dusting ceiling fans, clearing out the refrigerator, and giving your home a good deep cleaning. It may be worth considering if your listing creatives are due for an upgrade.
Do your listing’s copy and product photography abide by Amazon requirements and follow the style guidelines? Is your competition doing something with their photos that seems to be working? Are you maximizing your visibility by having a keyword-optimized product listing, or are you missing out on indexation for keywords customers are using to products like yours?
These are just a few of the questions you should ask yourself when considering updating your creatives.
Even if your product photography is in tip-top shape, additional photos can still provide plenty of benefits for your business. For example, possessing extra product images opens the door for creative advertising.
One way you can spruce up your advertising with enhanced photos is Amazon Posts, a relatively new option to increase brand visibility. Amazon Posts is a social media-like platform within Amazon that allows brand registered sellers to flex their advertising muscle. Appearing on product detail pages selected by Amazon, brands get the ever-important chance to poach customers from competing listings.
The best thing about Amazon Posts? It’s totally free. Well, submitting your Posts is free, anyway. You’ll still want professional photos capable of enticing customers to earn a click. Since Amazon Posts is somewhat new, it’s flying under the radar of many sellers, but can be an incredibly efficient weapon for stealing customers from the competition.
Additionally, having extra photos come in handy if you sell outside of Amazon or may consider selling elsewhere at a later time.
Lastly, having extra photos at your disposal provides an even better opportunity to experiment for peak optimization. Once you’ve got premium product photography, don’t forget to split test! With a plethora of split testing sites to choose from, it’s an easy step to maximize your conversions and profitability!
Flex Your Marketing Muscle with PPC
Another great way to invest your stimulus money into your business is by using it to take the next step with Amazon PPC (pay-per-click) advertising.
Although Amazon debuted PPC advertising in 2012, it has grown considerably over the last 2-3 years and shows no sign of slowing down. With Amazon expected to net nearly $13 billion in advertising in the United States marketplace alone, the company has every reason to continue pushing and developing PPC.
Whether this means finally taking that PPC course, creating your first campaign, or trying out an unexplored ad type, doing it with a bonus $1,400 makes it a prime opportunity to experiment with PPC.
For sellers currently selling, it especially makes sense to test out new campaigns now as plenty of customers are flush with their stimulus money and tax season right around the corner.
After all, you’re not the only one receiving the stimulus. More customers shopping with more money is a recipe for more customer searches. As your product appears more frequently through search and on competitor listings, the sample size for your campaigns grows larger and, thus, more reliable.
Fortunately, the options are flexible for you regarding your PPC campaigns. Set your budgets as low or as high as you feel comfortable with, and barring disaster, let them run until the reporting data begins to stabilize. Once they’ve matured, you’ll have real data on your performance that you can use to optimize to your advantage.
Scale Your Store by Expanding Your Brand
Suppose you feel like you’ve squeezed nearly all the juice you can out of a product. First off, congratulations! It’s every Amazon sellers’ goal to reach and maintain peak performance, but what do you do once you’ve achieved it? For many, it can be a never-ending pursuit of perfection.
However, it may be more beneficial to scale your brand by finding your next home run. Think of your stimulus check as $1,400 off the development of your next product, and this becomes especially beneficial.
Of course, this entirely depends on your goals, resources, and risk appetite. Ideally, the learning curve for launching a new product shortens with each new product. If you’ve built a strong brand on Amazon, the likelihood of your next product being a success increases exponentially.
Instead of squeezing every penny possible out of your current storefront, dig into your sales reporting numbers and do your best to determine the best course of action for your business.
Don’t miss out on the opportunity to supercharge your Amazon business! Whether jumpstarting your entrepreneurial career or looking to take your existing e-commerce operation up a notch, investing in your business with your stimulus money could provide an excellent, long-lasting return on investment.
No matter what you decide to do with your stimulus money, enjoy it! Without a doubt, extra cash in your pocket is nice. But creating long-lasting, sustainable sources of income is even better.
Thanks for reading! Want Amazon news sent directly to your inbox? Just drop your email below.
Ryan Cramer walks through his perspective on where international e-commerce is headed and how sellers can take advantage of the growing seller momentum around the world.
At Viral Launch, we constantly hear from Amazon sellers who want to take their business to the next level. The option to sell internationally on Amazon is a low-risk, high-reward opportunity that’s being underutilized in the seller community.
Why is selling internationally such a promising proposition? Follow the Data host Cam Yoder chats with Ryan Cramer of PingPong Payments to find out!
PingPong helps e-commerce businesses sell worldwide by providing international payment solutions. Since 2015, more than 600,000 e-commerce merchants have entrusted PingPong with their cross-border payments, resulting in more than $10 billion processed for global sellers.
With experience in sales, marketing, and e-commerce, Ryan expertly explains the benefits of going global and how you can take full advantage of growing seller momentum around the world, so you can expand your business as Amazon continues to grow. Don’t miss out on growing with Amazon international!
Get familiar with what PingPong does for sellers and Ryan’s extensive background in e-commerce (0:12)
Ryan lets us in on his professional journey to PingPong Payments and how it fits in with his goals. With a background featuring a steady mix of sales and e-commerce, Ryan provides an insightful perspective on where those fields overlap.
Ryan, on how he sees international fitting into the typical Amazon seller’s strategy (10:39)
Quietly, Amazon has been steadily expanding around the world. As e-commerce continues to grow at different speeds globally, it allows yet another way for Amazon sellers to scale their business. Ryan breaks down why it’s worth keeping an eye on international opportunities, and why it should be on the minds of current or prospective sellers.
With Prime shipping, Amazon changed the way we buy online in the U.S. Is changing the way the world buys online up next? (12:57)
The future of selling is closer than it may appear. Amazon is rolling out programs to provide the same revolutionary two-day shipping program in its international marketplaces. For many U.S. sellers, the idea of selling internationally can seem quite foreign. Ryan lets us know about these programs, what they may mean, and why now may be the best time to take your business global.
So you want to sell internationally. What are the prime marketplaces to target? (15:57)
While selling internationally might be easier than you think, there certainly are important decisions to be made before getting started. We discuss the importance of locating emerging markets, understanding cultural differences, local habits, and more aspects to consider before taking your business abroad.
More money is being poured into buying Amazon businesses than ever. What does this mean for the traditional Amazon seller in the near future? (23:14)
With millions upon millions of venture capital money going to companies that buy Amazon businesses, are the days of the traditional Amazon seller numbered? Ryan doesn’t think so in the slightest and believes it’s actually a great opportunity for more traditional sellers.
Lastly, a huge thanks to Ryan for coming on the show and sharing his knowledge with us!
Check out PingPong to save a LOT of money if you sell internationally!
Don’t be the last to know! Subscribe to our email list to receive the latest Amazon news to stay informed on all things Amazon.
Chances are, you probably sell on Amazon because you recognize the huge potential ROI there.
But have you ever stopped to think about your next step after your FBA business? Many FBA owners have never considered selling their business—or even know the option is on the table!
We wanted to share why selling your FBA business could help you build an even better business and be the best thing for your entrepreneurial journey. Let’s explore the reasons FBA owners sell their businesses.
The Truth about Selling Your FBA Business
Selling an FBA business boils down mainly to personal or business-related reasons.
In terms of personal reasons, we’ve seen sellers exit because of an event or goal that meant they no longer had time to manage the business. Some of these reasons include a death in the family or wanting to spend more time with their kids.
Business-related reasons tend to revolve around raising capital for another project or losing motivation to stay with the business.
Whatever their reason for selling, some FBA sellers have received two to four years of net profit in cash in one payment. That’s the biggest windfall many entrepreneurs have ever received in one go.
But don’t start counting your chickens before they hatch: first, let’s dive into understanding how FBA businesses are valued.
FBA Business Valuation
Online business brokers and individuals working in mergers and acquisitions (M&A) usually value businesses by a multiple of earnings before interest, tax, depreciation, and amortization (EBITDA). EBITDA represents a business’s annual profit, and it is multiplied in the range of two and four times.
The valuation formula we use is:
Valuation = 12-Month Average Monthly Net Profit x Multiple
There’s not much difference between the two formulas. We stick to the average monthly net profit because it gives a more granular view of an FBA business’s performance than an annual profit figure.
While average monthly net profit is easy to calculate, determining the multiple is a bit more complicated as it takes into account the business’s age, traffic sources, branding, product line, and pricing window.
Age of FBA Business
A profitable older brand tends to be valued more highly than a younger one because it has survivability.
Unexpected market demands and changes place stress on FBA businesses, which can seriously affect cash flow and average order values.
A business’s ability to scale and grow through these challenges shows buyers that it’s resilient. While you can’t directly influence your business’s age, the takeaway here is that age works in a seller’s FBA business’s valuation, which is why a long-term Amazon selling strategy pays off more than a short-term plan.
Diversity of Traffic Sources
One of the greatest advantages of selling on Amazon is being able to leverage their brand, which customers love and trust.
However, selling on a single marketplace can lower a business’s multiple because if that source of traffic is shut down, there’s a higher risk that the business will be negatively impacted.
Amazon is well known for delisting products and shutting down stores for minor infractions. While you can prepare to ensure you fulfill Amazon’s requirements, increasing the number of traffic sources through multichannel selling is a good way to minimize your business’s risk and increase its multiple.
Branding has a smaller influence on the multiple than the other factors listed here since it’s hard to quantify how strong a brand is .
That said, the number of customer ratings and reviews, as well as how high the ratings are, play a part in determining the multiple. If people mention the FBA brand on social media, the context is also taken into consideration. Are customers raving about a store’s products and recommending them to their friends? Or are their experiences mixed, with varied reactions toward the customer service or the product’s functionality?
A strong brand is an attractive asset to a buyer, but it has less weight than the other factors that affect a multiple.
There isn’t a perfect number of products that will help you gain the highest possible valuation. A couple of key things to keep in mind are the amount of work it takes to manage your product range and the diversity of the revenue generated by the products.
Let’s compare two FBA businesses in the home niche, both selling kitchen products. Business A has only one product, while business B has 50, and both generate $100,000 in revenue from sales each month.
Business A’s single product has the same risk as a single traffic source: if the product is delisted, the business’s cash flow is completely cut off.
While it might look like business B won’t suffer from this issue, there are a couple of issues with its product range. For instance, if a single product generates over 50% of the business’s revenue, this is also cause for concern from a revenue-by-product basis. Managing all those listings could also consume most of your productive hours, time that could be spent growing the business in other ways.
We’ve seen the ideal range of products to diversify sales and be manageable without being overwhelming is between three and eight products.
Of course, there are exceptions to the rule. Some buyers with large capital reserves won’t mind paying for a single-product FBA business because the potential ROI of a future flip may outweigh the risk. These types of buyers will probably make strategic acquisitions and have a team of optimization ninjas to increase the value of their assets.
Buyers who can afford to buy only a few FBA businesses will be much more cautious about a business with a product range that’s too large or small. They are likely to be solopreneurs who manage operations on their own, so the stakes would be much higher if the business didn’t work out as hoped.
Another thing to keep in mind is for how long you’ll calculate the average monthly net profit.
12 months is the golden standard because it provides a good view of the business’s traffic and revenue earnings and takes fluctuations in buyer demand, aka seasonality, into account.
If you started your FBA business less than 12 months ago, we’d recommend waiting before considering a sale. While you could shorten the pricing window to three or six months to reflect the profits, buyers will look at the business holistically and see that only a short window of data is available to help them decide whether to buy your business.
Again, there are exceptions to this rule. Some buyers with more capital means or a higher risk tolerance might make an offer for newer FBA brands.
Shorter pricing windows narrow the buyer pool, making it harder to find the right buyer who’ll offer you a reasonable deal. You might receive only a single offer and find yourself settling for a much lower offer than you wanted to ensure you close the deal.
Who Would Buy Your Site?
Now that you have a basic understanding of FBA businesses are valued, you might be wondering who would be interested in buying one.
There’s a wide range of buyers with different levels of available capital and time, but all buyers recognize the power of selling on Amazon, and they want a piece of the ecommerce pie.
FBA businesses offer a lower barrier to entry for ecommerce entrepreneurship than full-blown ecommerce, which requires owners to manage many different moving parts. Instead of building a business from scratch, a buyer can acquire an existing FBA brand that’s generating steady profit.
To increase your chances of receiving a great offer and landing a successful deal, let’s discuss how to widen the buyer pool.
5 Ways to Optimize Your FBA Business
Buyers are much more likely to put down an offer after doing their due diligence if they think a business is a deal they just can’t pass up. So how can you make your business an asset that buyers will compete for?
By making it as hands-off as possible.
This is not to say that a less optimized business will attract zero buyers, but an FBA business that requires minimal work from the owner to maintain will be more attractive.
1. Use a Third-Party Logistics (3PL) Service Provider
Many sellers ship their inventory directly to FBA fulfillment centers, so storage and fulfillment are managed in one place. While it might be easier to allow a manufacturer to ship their products to FBA warehouses, it could be costlier than using a 3PL service provider.
Spend some time shopping for reputable 3PL solutions to see if there’s a more cost-effective route.
Another thing to consider is if you should use a 3PL as an additional storage facility. If stock doesn’t sell within six months, Amazon will charge long-term storage fees.
Depending on your products’ average turnover time, it might be better to hold stock in a warehouse and send batches of inventory to FBA centers according to your inventory forecasting.
While additional expenses sound like they should bring down your business’s valuation, removing essential services will in turn add extra burden and responsibility for the owner to manage and make the business a less attractive option.
A common mistake we see FBA sellers make is to cancel their 3PL solutions services, which brings down overall costs but adds 10–20 hours of work each week. The initial valuation price may increase but at the expense of making your business more hands-on.
2. Nurture Great Supplier Relationships
If you have exclusivity with your suppliers, ensuring that agreement will be carried over to the next owner makes purchasing your FBA business a more attractive prospect.
Establishing a strong relationship with suppliers saves the buyer the time and energy required to find reliable manufacturers, giving them one less thing to worry about, so they can focus on expanding the business in other ways.
Diversifying the number of suppliers the business owner can call on also works in a seller’s favor. The ability to order from multiple suppliers helps avoid dreaded out-of-stock situations for your top-selling products, especially during peak seasons.
We’re not advocating for drop surfing, where you’re encouraging suppliers to compete for your business by undercutting each other to offer the lowest price. Developing good relationships with more than one supplier opens up other manufacturing channels in case your usual supplier has production issues.
3. Optimize Product Listings
Creating a great product is only half the battle. Getting it in front of the right eyes is the other half.
Increase the chances that your products will appear to your target audience by optimizing the listings for SEO.
Search engine optimization will involve keyword research and the placement of target keywords in your copy’s title and body. Just don’t stuff the keywords in; Amazon’s search algorithm will deprioritize your listings if it detects too many keywords.
As an FBA seller, you can leverage Amazon A+ Content (formerly known as Enhanced Brand Content) to enrich your ASIN descriptions. A+ Content doesn’t get indexed by Amazon’s search engine but can increase conversion rates, leading to more sales.
Hiring virtual assistants or outsourcing time-consuming tasks frees you up to focus on your growth strategy.
A great way to improve your own efficiency and automate more of your processes is by creating standard operating procedures (SOPs).
Well-documented SOPs will help a buyer keep the business running as it currently does, so it doesn’t drop performance after changing hands. SOPs are especially helpful to solopreneurs, streamlining the transition period by providing a resource they can refer to at any time.
If the new owner decides to outsource, they can use SOPs to train freelancers to operate the business as you did.
5. Build a Monetized Email List
Many FBA owners overlook using an email list as part of their marketing strategy, but to understand the power of email marketing, the real value lies in the audience it builds.
Gathering subscribers looks great, but the number remains a vanity metric if the list isn’t used properly. When you consistently deliver value to an audience through curated content, the email list becomes a valuable asset in itself because you don’t rely on search engine algorithms for your content to be found and you can address your audience any time.
However, if you are considering selling your FBA business and haven’t started an email list, I’d recommend that you use your time and resources to bolster your business’s strengths instead.
Email lists take a lot of time, energy, and patience to get right.
You’re nurturing an audience from scratch, so you’ll need to experiment with the type of content you send out and to get all the elements aligned for the highest conversion rate.
The Myth of Timing the Sale
Deciding when to sell can be hard. Some sellers think they can time the sale like a stock based on market conditions and whether the forecast is bullish or bearish.
In reality, it’s extremely difficult to succeed with this approach. We’d recommend selling your FBA business when it’s at its strongest and performing optimally on the capital means available.
A buyer may be willing to pay a premium price for an FBA business generating steady sales that has products with Amazon’s Choice or Best Seller status in their subcategories.
A business’s value is how much a buyer is willing to pay for it, which is why it matters where you list your business for sale if you want to succeed in landing a deal.
Best Places to Sell Your Business
There are really only two options: selling privately or using a broker.
A third option is to use a DIY marketplace, but we’d strongly recommend against using this type of service. DIY marketplaces charge a commission comparable to that of brokers, and you have to do a lot of the work to source deals and market your business yourself.
If you’re selling for the first time, a broker is the optimal route (even though we might sound biased for saying so).
If you go for a private deal, you risk running into two of the worst kinds of buyers: the savvy kind, who know how to negotiate a low price, and tire-kickers, the sort who make inquiries and non-serious offers, wasting your time. There’s also the need to attract many qualified buyers, which can be tough if you don’t have a wide network of suitable connections.
Then you have to worry about marketing your business and making it as attractive as possible without overselling.
There’s a mixed bag of brokers available. A reputable broker will have processes in place to attract buyers who can prove their buying intent with verified liquidity. When shopping for a broker, do your due diligence to see if they have such a system, as it helps both sellers and buyers.
You can register for free on a broker’s marketplace to talk about selling your FBA business and how they’ll help you handle the administrative side of things so you can focus on managing the different offers that come your way.
What’s Next? Preparing for Life After an Exit
We hope that by this point you’re aware of the amazing potential that selling your FBA business holds.
One of those possibilities is to buy another FBA business and keep your momentum going. After all, no one said you had to hang up your FBA hat and call it a day! The skills and experience you’ve developed could be used to scale a series of smaller businesses, so they reach their potential.
In time, you could flip them for a profit, creating a money-making engine that provides five figures of capital for each deal you make.
In time, you’ll have built up an ecommerce empire.
This is just one of the routes you could go down. Of course, you can reinvest the capital in any way you want.
Whether you pursue a passion project or put the money from the sale in your kids’ college fund, the possibilities start with the knowledge that your FBA business is a highly lucrative asset to the right buyer.
This insightful guide was brought to you from Empire Flippers. Do YOU want to contribute to the Viral Launch blog with your expertise? Simply complete our brief guest blog post form and we’ll contact you if it it seems like a great fit!
Saqib Azhar talks through his Amazon-focused growth strategies in 2021 and gives insight into how he built an enormous, highly engaged Amazon group on Facebook.
For the latest installment of Follow the Data, Saqib Azhar graciously shares his Amazon knowledge with host Cam Yoder. From starting your own business to training a country for taking on entrepreneurship, Azhar possesses one of the more influential voices in the Amazon seller community.
Azhar is the CEO and Co-Founder of Enablers and the leader of the world’s largest Facebook group for Amazon sellers.
At Enablers, Azhar’s mission is to combat unemployment in Pakistan by empowering and educating the youth to sell on Amazon. While most Amazon sellers seek to establish themselves, Azhar aims to lift a nation along with him.
With over a decade of e-commerce experience and a perspective unlike any other, Saqib has plenty of unrivaled knowledge to share. In other words, this is a must-listen for serious Amazon sellers.
Be sure to check out the show for advanced Amazon seller strategy from one of the world’s most knowledgable resources!
Get familiar with Saqib Azhar and his unique experience as an Amazon seller and community leader. (0:00)
Enjoy the episode? Like and subscribe to our YouTube channel or wherever you listen to podcasts! Don’t miss out on the Amazon seller insights within our hundreds of episodes.
With years of experience in the Amazon space, how does Saqib plan on growing his business in 2021? (7:12)
As a long-time seller who manages one of the largest seller groups and teaches aspiring Amazon sellers, Saqib knows the ins and outs of Amazon in a way few others do. Don’t miss out on his valuable insights on how to take your Amazon business to the next level in 2021!
Saqib witnesses plenty of new sellers entering the marketplace. What common mistakes do beginner sellers make when starting out? (15:13)
Like many aspects of life, the beginning stages are an excellent opportunity for a learning experience. However, beginners on Amazon quite literally can’t afford to commit beginning blunders. Saqib shares common beginner mistakes, so you can accelerate the learning curve and avoid rookie mistakes.
As e-commerce continues to grow, the ability to build a community around a product or a brand allows for explosive results. Further, Saqib breaks down how what has powered the growth of his company.
Before we say goodbye, Saqib offers sage advice for Amazon sellers. (31:29)
The entrepreneurial spirit and desire to be self-sufficient leads many to Amazon. But that same mentality can be their downfall on such a wide-ranging platform. To wrap up the conversation, Saqib leaves us with sound advice.
Is it too late to start an Amazon business in 2021? Not at all! We spoke with Kae Peterson, an Amazon seller who launched her brand in the past year.
On Follow The Data, we aim to cover the hottest topics for Amazon sellers. In this episode, we tackle the most common question we receive from those interested in starting their own online business: Is it too late to get in the game?
The short answer: absolutely NOT.
In this episode, host Cam Yoder chats with Kae Peterson, who knows firsthand that starting an Amazon business remains an excellent opportunity for entrepreneurs.
Kae’s background and experience in the volatile entertainment industry pushed her to search for more consistent, reliable income sources.
With an entrepreneurial spirit and appetite for learning, Kae charted her own path into Amazon and eCommerce. After successfully launching her first product in the past year, she’s looking to expand her business and online presence in the new year.
Be sure to check out the video below to learn how Kae made her leap into the Amazon marketplace, her recommended best practices for starting from scratch, and some inspirational gems to get your mind right!
Get to know Kae! Although a newbie on Amazon, she’s no rookie in entrepreneurship. Dating back to 2013, she’s ran a brick-and-mortar store and experienced success with music and modeling. So what led her to selling on Amazon?
It’s one thing to consider the prospect of selling on Amazon, it’s another to go through the stages before selling your first product. Kae walks us through the evolutions of her learning experience. (5:26)
Even with Kae’s unique background, her learning experience is a fairly common one. Once you’ve decided to start your online business, it’s all about finding a process that works for you. Finding experts you can learn from and accurate, reliable tools to discover and validate clever product ideas makes all the difference.
Additionally, Kae includes one crucial mistake that taught her a vital lesson with the product-finding process.
The cost of starting up an Amazon business can be a major deterrent. But Kae didn’t let the start-up costs slow her down, funding her own business in a creative way. (9:56)
Faced with the issue of not having the funds to confidently start her Amazon business, Kae took matters into her own hands. While programs such as Amazon Lending exist, the prospect of taking out a loan can be scary. So Kae started her own business as a way to fund her bigger vision, becoming a perfect example of how you can grind your way to make your dreams reachable.
Possessing a big picture strategy and learning from past experience are crucial for growth. What’s in Kae’s roadmap for finding products in 2021? (14:15)
There’s no greater teacher than experience. With her first Amazon product experience down, Kae offers insight on the elements of a product idea that gained emphasis for future products.
You’ve started selling on Amazon, but what happens next? Kae outlines her goals for in regard expanding her brand after launching. (22:15)
Every seller jumps into Amazon with goals and a purpose that is driven from within. Those components can determine your path beyond your first product launch.
With so much emphasis on making sure your first product is a home run, it can be easy to feel lost once the product is launched. Listen as Kae breaks down her long-term goals and what’s in-store for her brand for the year ahead.
Certainly, 2020 presented a unique experience for Amazon sellers. What issues are on the radar for sellers in the new year? (27:34)
After the past year, we could all use a dose of optimism. 2020 showed that challenges, both foreseeable and unforeseeable, will continue to persist and the successful will take them as they come and persevere.
A special thanks to Kae Peterson for hopping on the show and sharing her experience starting an Amazon business to this point. Make sure to give her a follow in the links provided below to follow her on her Amazon journey!
One of the most challenging aspects of starting a business is getting your product in front of the right audience. As Amazon owns about 49 percent of the U.S. e-commerce share, it makes sense to start an Amazon FBA business to sell your e-commerce products as your target market already prefers shopping there.
Additionally, Amazon makes it easy for sellers to list, sell, and ship their products through their Fulfillment By Amazon (FBA) program. Here’s everything you need to know about an Amazon FBA business and whether you should start an Amazon FBA business or purchase an existing one.
What is FBA?
Some 73 percent of Amazon sellers in the U.S. use the FBA program, making it one of the most popular e-commerce sales options. Amazon FBA sellers receive immediate access to Amazon Prime customers, which can significantly impact the bottom line of the business. On average, Amazon Prime customers spend $1,400 per year on Amazon, whereas standard Amazon customers only spend $600 per year.
The other reason why FBA businesses are popular is that it’s convenient.
With an Amazon FBA business, you don’t have to ship, package, or store any goods yourself. Instead, you pay a small fee, and Amazon employees handle all of this for you.
Shipping fees are up to $5.26 for large items (items up to 21 pounds), and they also have oversized pricing options for much larger items.
Storage fees are also reasonable at $0.69 per cubic foot for standard items January through September (October through December fees may be higher to accommodate increased demand during holidays).
You’ll also have to decide whether you want to be a professional seller or an individual seller. You aren’t required to have a professional seller account to have an Amazon FBA business, though it may be cheaper depending on how many items you plan to sell. A professional seller account pays a flat rate of $39.99 per month, whereas an individual account pays $0.99 per item.
Therefore, if you plan to sell more than 40 items per month, it’s likely more economical to purchase a professional seller account.
So if you’re looking to own an Amazon FBA business, is it better to purchase an existing business or start one from scratch?
While there is no right or wrong answer, here are a few questions you should ask yourself to determine which is the best solution for your situation and goals:
Do You Have The Capital?
The first question you should ask yourself is if you have the means to purchase an existing business.
An Amazon FBA business usually sells for about two to three times its yearly net profit. In other words:
Annual Net Profit x Multiple (usually 2 or 3) = Valuation
Therefore, if you want to purchase a business that makes about $10,000 in annual net profit, you can expect to pay $20,000 – 30,000.
Unfortunately, if you don’t have any capital upfront, your only choice is to build one from scratch, which can still be quite profitable!
Is This a Long Term or Short Term Investment?
Another question you should ask yourself before getting started with an Amazon FBA business is how long you’re willing to invest in the project.
If you’re willing to invest in this business for a few years, starting from scratch may offer you a more significant ROI. Getting started can be challenging as you’ll have to find your own suppliers and build reviews and a brand. Therefore, during those first several months, you may not make a dime, so you can’t expect to flip the store in a few months.
On the other hand, if you are looking to purchase a store, sell for a few months, and then flip it quickly, an established store is a better option.
Building momentum in a brand new company takes time. Not all sellers are profitable in the first year of a new Amazon FBA business, making it difficult to flip for a reasonable price as your net profit may be zero or negative.
However, once you pass a certain threshold of reviews and brand equity, exponential growth becomes possible.
What Skill Sets Do You Have?
Some people entering the Amazon FBA world have a background in business or marketing. If this is the case, one of the best ways to decide whether you’ll purchase or start an FBA business is to play to your strengths.
For example, if you previously worked for an e-commerce store and understand how to grow it, you may perform better if you purchase an existing store and grow it.
However, suppose you worked at a startup company and understand how to be resourceful, play the long game, and hang in there during the first challenging year of zero profit. In that case, you might be more successful starting a business from scratch.
Building a business from scratch and taking a business from five figures to six or seven figures requires two very different skill sets, so play to your strengths.
What Kind of Risk Would You Rather Take?
Starting any business involves some risk. However, the type of risk you take differs based on whether you purchase an existing business or build one from scratch.
Building one from scratch requires zero capital risk upfront though your chances of becoming profitable are much lower.
If you purchase a business that is currently profitable, your chances of remaining profitable are much greater. However, if you suddenly run into problems with suppliers, knock-off items or pricing wars and your business falls apart, you’ll lose a larger investment.
Therefore, while the risks differ, both have risks. So would you rather gamble time or money? Here are your choices:
Buy a Business = Higher Probability of Profitability + Increase Capital Risk
Start a Business = Lower Probability of Profitability + Lower Capital Risk
What Is Your End Goal?
Ultimately, the right decision depends largely on your goals. Do you plan to grow businesses from scratch and then sell them? If that’s your end goal, starting a business from scratch is the best way to learn.
Above all, running an Amazon FBA business is similar to running any business. Regardless of whether you purchase one or start one from scratch, it requires a lot of time, dedication, and commitment, and you can’t give up on it after a few months. You’ll have to put out fires and appease angry customers, though the rewards of growing a thriving business are more than financial. Get started now, and commit yourself to keep going!
According to multiple reports, Amazon is planning a special “Summer Sale” slated to begin toward the end of the month. Along with this news, it appears that their signature Prime Day sale will be postponed.
The spontaneous sales event signals that a return to normal is imminent, and presents an excellent opportunity for sellers to make up for lost sales at the onset of the pandemic.
There has been no formal announcement, so more details are sure to emerge in the coming days. Until then, here‘s what we know about the upcoming sales event:
What is it?
Unlike Prime Day, which features site-wide deals, this special sales event appears to be exclusive to fashion brands. Amazon has requested that sellers submit deals for items with a discount of at least 30% to jumpstart interest and sales.
“The Big Style Sale takes place later this month and will include seasonally-relevant deals from both established and smaller fashion brands,” confirmed an Amazon spokesperson to CNBC. “We are delighted to help brands connect with our vast global customer base for this event.”
Currently, it’s unclear if this sale will be exclusive to Amazon Prime users. But with over 150 million Prime subscribers, massive traffic is inevitable.
When is the Summer Sale?
According to the same CNBC report, the seasonal sale begins Monday, June 22, and lasts 7–10 days.
The extended duration of the sale in comparison to traditional Amazon promotions certainly should be monitored as more information is revealed.
Why is this event happening?
While Amazon positioned itself favorably to handle the pandemic compared to brick-and-mortar retail, they were not without COVID-related complications.
The Summer Sale drives up excitement and sales for a situation where sellers, consumers, and the company all win. This promotion gives sellers an increased opportunity to boost sales and unload seasonal inventory squandered by the pandemic-related postponements.
Which retailers are participating?
This event appears to be invitation-only, with Amazon having sent invites to select sellers. If you’re a seller who didn’t receive an invite, that doesn’t mean you’re entirely left out!
If Prime Day is any indicator, it’s highly likely that the sale will bring an influx of shoppers looking for a deal, so there’s plenty of opportunities for sellers to crash the party by running promotions.
Be sure to stay posted on the details of the event, as more information is sure to come!
Did you receive an invitation to the Summer Sales event? How do you plan on preparing for the sale? Let us know in the comments!
It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Almost 50% of online holiday shoppers bought from Amazon in 2017, and we’re expecting to see that number increase in 2018. So, to help sellers ensure they have a lucrative Q4 this year, we’re going to walk through how to best prepare for Amazon Q4 traffic, what dates you need to remember, and how to get in front of as many buyers as possible to drive your sales through the roof.
Are you ready?
Let’s dive in.
Crucial Q4 Dates
One of the most common mistakes sellers make during Q4 is missing or forgetting important dates. Amazon events tend to happen on similar dates, so you can safely assume that the timeframe for these events will be nearly the same in 2018 as in 2017. Also, be aware that Amazon just enacted a new shipping policy in late August that will cause shipments with irregularities in quantity or delivery address to be delayed. Keep that in mind as we go over important dates during Q4.
Reduced Fulfillment Fee – Runs October through December
Last year, reduced fulfillment fees started on October 1 and continued through November and December. If FBA sellers reduce their storage space during these months, they could drastically reduce their total amount of FBA fees.
Increased Inventory Storage Fee – Runs October through December
During this timeframe, Amazon increases storage fees by 200-300% for standard and oversized items. This can really affect your profit margin, even with holiday sales, so make sure that you have room in your budget for higher fees.
Cutoff for New FBA Seller Accounts and Shipments – After Mid-October (Possibly)
Last year, new sellers weren’t allowed to sign up for FBA or send FBA shipments in after mid-October. This has been account based rather than ASIN based, so in the past sellers have sold retail arbitrage using FBA to get around the cutoff. But as long as you create a shipping order before the cutoff, you should be okay.
Cutoff for Black Friday / Cyber Monday Inventory – November 5
Last year Amazon also instituted a deadline for sending inventory for Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Black Friday (November 23) marks the official start of the holiday shopping season, and Cyber Monday (November 26) is a huge day for online retailers, especially Amazon sellers. Make sure you have enough inventory in your Amazon warehouse to cover your Black Friday and Cyber Monday orders by November 5, or mid- to late October, just to be safe.
Cutoff for Inventory to be Delivered by Christmas – December 1 (Probably)
The craziness doesn’t stop after Cyber Monday! All of your inventory that you plan to deliver by December 25 must be in the warehouse by early December.
Don’t forget these dates. FBA sellers have to be on top of their game from now until Christmas in order to capitalize off of massive Q4 revenue opportunities.
Planning A Launch
Your next challenge is to determine the best timeline for getting your inventory into the warehouse and for starting a launch so you can get onto Page 1 at just the right time.
First, look at market data from previous years to determine when sales have historically started to increase (not sure where to find data for your product? Our Market Research Chrome extension can help with that). You can expect that sales will follow the same pattern for 2018. Make sure your inventory is in stock before the sales spike.
Then plan to start a product launch at least a week before the sales spike. A launch typically takes 7-10 days and will help increase sales and drive ranking so you can ride the wave of Q4 sales all the way through the holidays.
Timing is crucial. If you launch too early, you’ll have to maintain your ranking all throughout the holiday season. Launch too late, you’ll have to give away too much inventory and run out before the sales wave ends – or even worse, you’ll miss the wave completely. If you are unsure about when exactly you need to start your launch, our coaches can help you research past trends to determine the best launch strategy for your product market.
Preparing Your Listing
Before you launch your product, you need to make sure that your listing copy and photography are both fully optimized and follow Amazon style guidelines. A well-written listing and high-quality photo set work together with product launches to increase organic sales and drive ranking for a successful final quarter.
Make sure that you’re using high volume and high opportunity keywords in your product listing. You have to plug in the best Amazon keywords in the best order in a way that reads well and follows Amazon style guidelines. Piece of cake, right?
Ranking is largely determined by your title, followed by your bullet points and backend search term keywords. Our Keyword Research and Listing Builder tools allow you to discover which keywords have the highest search volume in your market, which high opportunity keywords you might be missing out on, and how many potential searches your current listing could rank for.
Your listing also needs to be written well enough that buyers are convinced your product is worth buying, but without using restricted phrases or claims that could get you flagged by Amazon. If you don’t have the time or skillset to create an optimized listing, our team of copywriting professionals can do it for you.
Product photography is crucial for converting clicks into purchases. Because they can’t see the product for themselves before buying, online shoppers heavily rely on photos for information. To convince shoppers to add your product to their cart, your photos need to look professional, display important details of your product, follow Amazon guidelines (or risk being flagged), and establish an emotional connection with buyers.
If you’re a new seller or have little to no photography experience, hiring a professional photographer might be the best choice for you. Your photo set has to convince buyers that your product is better than your competitor’s product, but it’s only one of the many moving parts of a successful Q4 strategy.
Crafting Your Amazon Q4 Strategy
A successful Amazon Q4 strategy depends on planning, preparedness, and deliberate action. Now is the time to do your research and start prepping your listing and inventory for the busy holiday season. For more tips and tricks, be sure to check out our recent video on Q4 sales strategy.
At Viral Launch, we want to provide you with all the information you need to become successful on Amazon. For more Amazon selling strategies during every quarter, we encourage you to subscribe to our blog, check out our Youtube channel, and listen to our Follow the Data podcast.