Selling on Amazon can be complex. Keep these tips in mind.
Say what you will about Amazon, its online marketplace and huge distribution network has made it possible for all kinds of entrepreneurs to get their products out there. No matter your business’ size, you can get your brand out there in the world and easily get your products out to your customers. While Amazon can help simplify your business distribution, selling on Amazon can also be, in a lot of ways, very complex. Here’s a few points that even veteran sellers can miss.
Duplicate listings on the Amazon marketplace can divert traffic away from your products and listings. While competitors should obviously not be creating these duplicate listings, Amazon can’t police every listing. It’s recommended that at least once every few months you take some time to search out any duplicate listings of your items. These extra listings direct traffic to your competitors and can cost you sales; it’s probably worth your time to report this activity to have the duplicate listings and advertising removed.
Actively Manage Your Inventory
Keep an eye on your stock levels. The most obvious reason? An out of stock item is a missed sale, as simple as that. If your customer can’t get your brand of item but they needed to purchase it today, they’ll be looking for something similar from a competitor.
But otherwise, actively managing your inventory can help you keep your items in stock at the right times. Amazon sellers can only keep a certain amount of inventory at a time and you should work to make sure that high-demand items are where they need to be when they need to be there. Keep your seasonal stock higher if you’re anticipating higher demand.
Track Product Returns as They Come In
Some sellers treat their inventory returns as they would working in a retail location; processing them all at once when they can sit down and run through and write them all off together, like at the end of the month.
Monitoring and processing your returns as they come in lets you keep a more active control on your products. Track the return rate of each individual SKU. Determine which ones were damaged by customers or damaged in shipping or what your rate of fail is on the item itself. With this active data, you can determine for yourself which items you may need to remove from your inventory, or if you need to negotiate return allowances or arrangements with your suppliers to compensate your bottom line.
Amazon can collect your sales taxes for you, for a fee, but they do not do so automatically. Many sellers, especially new sellers, think that Amazon will handle that as a standard part of the marketplace transactions, but that’s not how it works. It’s ultimately up to each individual seller to ensure that their taxes are being properly paid on time. It’s worth the time to dig through your account’s tax settings, or make other arrangements. There are online tax services for sellers outside of Amazon that may work better for your organization, but it’s on you!
While selling on Amazon opens a lot of doors for many sellers, it doesn’t eliminate the need to manage your business like a business. Click here to learn more.