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Follow the Trend

Instead of trying to catch up with what is popular now, look into the future and see what will be popular. There are some huge trends and shifts happening – making some niches sell a lot more in the long term.

Even before Covid-19 there was a huge shifting of people working more remotely and more from home. The Coronavirus just accelerated an existing trend.

More and more companies were letting people work at home, work remotely or spend part of the week at a home office.

What other big trends and shifts are taking place that you could benefit from?

Working From Home

The trend of working at home is not going to disappear. Yes, many people will go back to working in an office. But, workers of all types are requesting at least 1 to 5 days a week to work from home.

If this trend continues, which products do you think will be popular?

Everything from desks, to computer accessories have had their sales explode upwards. Instead of going after the main work at home trend, try to think of complementary products you could sell.


Improve Your IPI Score On Amazon

Amazon has recently changed the way it calculates inventory storage limits. Now the IPI score, Inventory Performance Index, is the main factor in determining your allowed storage levels.

The IPI score also shows you how your business is performing on Amazon.

Why is this important?

Excess Inventory

This measures how much extra stock you have. It serves as a warning light if your product is not selling enough relative to the stock level.

In the short term, FBA storage fees are not too expensive. But if a product stays in Amazon over 12 months it gets hit with Long Term Storage fees which are many times more costly.

This section of the Inventory Dashboard highlights which SKUs have too much stock and Amazon even calculates how much it will cost you in storage fees.

It is usually cheaper to store the product in an FBA prep warehouse than Amazon itself – so pay attention to this and reduce stock levels so you don’t get hit with big fees!


Promoting Products on Amazon

Why are promotions important? How can they help you scale your sales & profits? In this article we will cover the top tips for running promotions on Amazon.

Tip 1 Why Promote

Amazon ranks products firstly by their relevance using keywords, then it compares the overall sales performance of similar products.

If you’re on page 2 and don’t get much traffic and it’s hard for you to sell a lot of products, you’re always going to be ranked on page 2. The reason for doing a promotion is to get more traffic for 7 or 10 days and increase your organic sales.

By doing this, your product sales will increase such that Amazon will put you on page 1. Using a tool like cash cow pro you can see the exact number of units you need to give away to be able to rank in the top 10.

Tip 2 Preparing for Promotion

The first thing you need to do before launching a promotion is to make sure your listing is fully optimized.

There’s no point driving lots of extra traffic to a product if the images are not high resolution and the copywriting is not optimal. Once you’re confident you’ve done everything you can to make a listing as good as possible, the next thing to do is to drop your price just before starting a promotion.

The reason for this is you want to maximize sales while the boost from a promotion is helping you to rank. The more sales you can get the more likely it is you will stick to the new higher position.

Just boosting BSR is not the goal: you want long-term organic sales.


Amazon FBA: Getting Help

Sometimes you just get stuck with your Amazon business. If you are having a problem or issue – or you are not sure what to do next, we put together this guide on resources you can use.

In this article we cover the top tips for getting help with your Amazon business.

Tip 1 Seller Central

If you have an issue with your listing or account, the fastest way to resolve it is to contact Amazon through the help section in Seller Central.

During normal business hours they are very responsive and can usually fix most issues within a couple of hours. You can also email an Amazon representative and they usually provide a detailed response to your problem within a day or so.

For critical issues, always call the Amazon help desk for sellers.

Tip 2 Amazon Forum

If you have a seller central account you can also ask questions in the Amazon forum.

You may want to bounce ideas around for strategies and determine what is and isn’t acceptable on Amazon by asking your peers in this group. Amazon also monitors the discussion and responds to questions and issues.

This is a good place to get general tips, such as how to find a good supplier.


Amazon FBA: Setting Up a Promotion

AMZ Tracker is the best tool for launching new promotions on Amazon.

Every so often, Amazon updates the types of promotions available. In this article we cover the top things you need to know about the different promotions available on Amazon.

Tip 1 Types

If you head over to Advertising > Promotions on the main menu in Seller Central you will be able to see the types of promotion available. The main ones are:

Social Media Code:
Create a custom promo code and receive a unique marketing page to share with customers through social media, emails, or influencer marketing.

This is great for sharing with influencers.

Percentage Off
Here you can set up promotions with a certain percentage off or set discount.

Buy One Get One
This lets you create special offers allowing customers to get a second unit FREE.

Tip 2 Keep it Simple

You can get quite creative with all the different types of promotion available on Amazon.

I recommend keeping it simple to begin with, learning about how promotion works and then increasing your range of offers once you are more experienced and have a larger Amazon catalog of products.

Start with just offering a 5% discount on 1 product. This can show on the Amazon search results with a tag – which will help your product stand out among the competition.


Getting Reviews On Amazon

Products with a high review rating sell more, rank higher and have better conversion rates.

Getting reviews on Amazon can be difficult. In this article we cover the top methods for getting reviews for your products on Amazon.

Tip 1 Feedback Emails

What are feedback emails? These are automatic emails that go out to every customer that orders a product from you. This is one of the best ways to get more positive reviews and prevent negative reviews.

Set up an automatic email feedback collection system that sends an email to your customers as soon as their product has been shipped or delivered.

Not every customer will receive your emails, because they are allowed to opt out from receiving seller emails. Usually around 40% of orders will get your email.

Tip 2 Seller Feedback

Push customers to leave seller feedback first. The reason for this is you can remove negative seller feedback that is about the product.

For customers that leave a negative seller review, contact them and resolve their issue. For customers that leave a 5-star seller review, drop them an email thanking them and requesting that they leave you a product review. You can do this automatically by clicking the request review next to the specific order.


Visiting Your Amazon Supplier

Did you know, by just negotiating face to face with a supplier you could save 10% to 30% or more off your product.

One of the biggest competitive advantages you can get on Amazon is insider knowledge by visiting your supplier.

In this article we talk about the top benefits of visiting your suppliers before ordering.

Benefit 1 See How the Product’s Made

By going to the factory and seeing how the product is actually made, you’ll be able to design a lower cost and better all-round product because you know more about the production process.

You could also spot potential issues by watching how the factory makes those kinds of items.

You will understand how to make the product better quality too. You can instantly see many material options in the supplier’s warehouse.

Benefit 2 See your Competition’s Products

I’ve been to many factories and seen some of my competitors’ top-secret products being made.

Also the factory might be selling to over 100 countries around the world. Each customer will have different packaging, maybe including bundles, and you can use everything you see to improve your own product.

Imagine being able to see 500 different variations of your potential product all in 1 room. You can take the best ideas used by buyers from other markets and apply it to your design.


Go To An Industry Trade Show or Online Event

WIth Corona, many events and trade shows have moved online. Do you sell home products? Electronics? There is definitely an international trade show of suppliers for your niche.

You can learn a huge amount simply from checking out top suppliers and brands in your market. In this article we’re covering the top reasons why you should go to trade shows or events – even if they are online .

5000 Factories

A typical trade show in Hong Kong or China has between 2000 and 5000 suppliers or more. Each supplier may have 10 to 1000+ products on display or in their catalogue.

You get to see 500,000 products in a single day. Online events let you browse top manufacturer products. Often products shown at events are the best or newly developed.


Amazon FBA: Communicating With Suppliers

Maybe you found the perfect niche product to sell – but how can you be sure you can actually get it into Amazon successfully?

How do you know you have the right supplier for your new product?

In this article we are going to cover the top questions you need to ask new suppliers when selling on Amazon.

Question 1 Price

First of all, ask them the price for different quantities of the product you are considering.

You need to know the price for the MOQ, which is the minimum order quantity a factory would accept. Some factories expect you to order 3000 units first time, while others may request that you spend $2000 on your first order.

It varies from factory to factory so you need to check the minimum order requirements. At the same time, ask the price for 5000+ units, so you can see what savings you can make by ordering larger volumes.

By knowing the prices for small and large orders upfront you can more accurately estimate your profit margin as your business scales.

Question 2 Lead Time

Both for the minimum order quantity and 5000 pieces, ask the factory for the normal production lead time.

Usually this is between 2 to 6 weeks for most products. During busy times of the year the production lead time may double, so always check with the factory before you place an order.

When planning your launch, always allow some extra time for manufacturing. The best is to have at least 30 days buffer built in because sometimes things go wrong – like the recent blockage of the Suez Canal!

Question 3 Background

Ask all suppliers to send you their profile, including the size of the factory, how many workers they have, the machinery they have, their main products, markets and customers they sell to.

Most factories will willingly give you this information. You need this to evaluate if they are a reputable supplier.

Go through their sales brochure, website, product catalogue and get an understanding of what other products they could potentially produce for you. If all their products are very different – e.g. wood products and plastic products – they might be a trading company and not a factory.

Question 4 Location

Ask for the detailed factory address in English and Chinese and Google this. Also ask for their showroom address.

If the showroom address is different from the factory address you could be dealing with an agent and not the factory direct. Ask for photos of both the factory and the showroom to see their production lines and products.

Check the location yourself and try to find links or references about the factory online. Maybe another seller has used them before and had issues and posted about it online. It takes 5 mins to check but could save you thousands by avoiding the wrong suppliers.

Question 5 Other Similar Products

When you contact suppliers, ask them to send you their catalog.

Ask about similar products to the one you are looking for and check which materials they can make it in. You might get some new ideas for products no-one else is selling on Amazon.

Question 6 Branding and Packaging

A factory may have made the same product for 100 customers around the world.

Each one has their own unique way to brand the product and package it. So ask the factory for pictures to show how you can add the logo and to discover the standard packaging they use for it.

This will save you a lot of work. You can also ask to see other customers packaging, although some factories may refuse this.

Question 7 Sample Arrangement

In your initial email to suppliers, find out the cost of a sample and how long it will take to arrange the sample.

I usually request for the sample cost to be refunded against the main order. This way you get that money and cost back. Most factories are willing to do this.

These top 7 points cover most of the questions you need to ask when reaching out to new suppliers.

Amazon FBA: Paying Suppliers

One of the riskiest steps in launching a product business is paying suppliers. What if they make a mistake with the order? What if they are not a real factory?

Follow our top tips to reduce your risk!

Tip 1 Start Small

When you’re first starting out dealing with overseas suppliers, it may be difficult to spot which ones are great and which ones are unreliable.

Over time you’ll know almost instantly if a factory is worth dealing with. When it comes to payments, especially to international suppliers, there are many scam artists because there’s so much money involved.

If they persuade you to send them a deposit and they disappear with the money, just by posting a few listings and a few emails they could make tens of thousands of dollars. That’s why it’s essential you verify the background of whoever you’re making payments to.

Try to start with a small order to test their reliability and quality.

Tips 2 and 3 Background Check

The quickest and fastest way to do a rough background check is using the following 3 tactics of the ABC method.

Step A: Ask for their full address in English and Local Language as well as their company name and incorporation certificate.

Search their company name and later their address on Google and skim through the results. If the factory claims to be a silicon specialist but their website has many different kinds of products from toys to wooden goods, they are probably a trader or someone who has put up a fake website to try to get business, or even a scammer.

Buy from the experts. If you’re buying a wooden item only buy from someone who is a specialist in this area. You’ll know that from their website, their product range and their knowledge when communicating with you via email.

Avoiding traders and doing a quick check of the website on Google is a great way to filter out bad suppliers and potential scammers.

Step B: Ask for references from 3 to 5 customers.

These can be in our countries, such as the UK, Germany or France. Any serious supplier will have customers across the globe and should be able to provide you with 3 references. Call or email them and ask them about their experience with that factory.

Also Google search the brands they give you as references. If they are mid-market to high-end brands the factory should be able to produce products to a good standard.

Step C: Visit the factory address or ask your agent to conduct a surprise visit.

I’ve been given factory addresses and when I showed up it turned out that it was just two guys in an apartment pretending to be a factory. Before you place any purchase order, you or your representative should always visit the factory.

Tip 4 Deposit

Normally factories ask for a 30% deposit when the order is placed and 70% balance payment before shipment.

This is standard across Asia, especially China and Hong Kong. If the supplier asks for more deposit, be very wary. It’s hard to get that deposit back if you later cancel the order or if the factory cannot make the goods to your standard.

They will claim they spent on materials already, so you’ll never see it again. That’s why you have to do as much due diligence before placing any orders as possible.

Tip 5 Escrow

One way to minimize payment risk is to use an escrow service.

The payment from escrow is only released when the quality of goods has been checked and verified. If possible add to your contract that a third party inspection done by SGS or Intertek has to be conducted and passed before the payment is released.

This goes some way to protecting you and ensuring that your product is in good condition before leaving the factory.

Tip 6 Other Payment Types

Larger businesses use letters of credit or TT payments for their orders.

A letter of credit is issued by your bank and tells the supplier’s bank that you have the cash to pay for the order and that your bank has set it aside, much like a certificate of deposit. The funds are released to the supplier only when they meet the conditions of the letter of credit.

Usually this includes passing inspection and presenting your bank with the shipping documents. This service is very expensive and your order needs to be $10,000 or more before it make senses to use this kind of payment.

Most suppliers will refuse a letter of credit for the first couple of orders because they want to use the cash to buy the materials. The alternative payment method is to send the deposit by telegraphic transfer directly to the factory’s bank.

This is the riskiest payment form because you are transferring the cash directly without any terms attached.

Tip 7 Credit

As you build your relationship with suppliers, ask for extended payment terms.

Since manufacturing is so capital intensive, it’s rare for factories to extend lengthy time frames for you to pay. You might be able to push for payment on delivery into your Amazon warehouse.

After two or three orders, ask the factory if you can pay 30 days after delivery. Ask for more than you expect them to agree to,  because if you settle somewhere in the middle the terms will still be in your favor.

Boost Sales With Influencers

Getting to the top of Amazon is hard if you are competing for the search traffic on Amazon. But what if you were getting thousands of visitors a month to your product from outside Amazon?

Sending Influencer Traffic to your listing can boost sales, profits & conversions. Here is our step by step process for finding and working with influencers.

Step 1: Who?

Make a list of potential partners on your chosen platform. For example, if you were going to partner with influencers on Instagram, you would search for people with profiles & accounts that match your niche.

Start by looking for small to medium influencers with around 10,000 to 50,000 followers. These are most likely to work with you and also they might not ask for much in return for promoting your product.


Product Samples For Amazon FBA

The only way to know for sure if a supplier is good or not is to check samples of the product you plan to order.

Sometimes a supplier can look great and have awesome product photos but the same itself is low quality.

In this article we cover the top tips for choosing a product supplier using samples.

Tip 1 Why Do I Need Them

You absolutely must get samples of any products you plan to order and sell on Amazon.

Products can look very different in real life than they do in a photo. Also the photo may hide quality flaws in the product. 



If you are selling on Amazon, why do you need your own website?

In this article we cover the top reasons to create your own brand website for your Amazon products.

With tools like WIX or Shopify or other website builders you can get an amazing looking website for just $30 or $40 a month.

Reason 1 Legitimate

Some customers will check on Google about your brand before purchasing your product.

They want to make sure you are a legitimate brand, especially if your item costs $30 or more. It’s really easy to set up a template on WordPress or Shopify.


The Best Type of Pay Per Click Campaign

Some markets are super competitive for Amazon ads. But if you are creative, there are ways to bring down your ad costs and boost your sales!

In this article we are going to cover the top tips for setting up your Amazon pay per click campaign.

Tip 1 Amazon Pay Per Click

The same team who built the Amazon search engine also built the Amazon pay per click engine. It’s not the same as Google. Amazon’s campaigns work using relevancy.

For example, if you use the keyword men’s gift in your pay per click campaign, unless it’s included on your listing you will get very few impressions.


How Much Investment Required for Amazon FBA?

How Much Investment Required for Amazon FBA?

As your business grows it will need more capital. You can start small but if your product sells well you might need to put in more cash too.

In this article we cover the different stages of your Amazon business lifecycle and the investment required.

Stage 1 Test Order

For your very first product, even if you think it’s gonna be a massive hit you should order the minimum amount possible and ship it to Amazon as quickly as possible, just so you can learn the process of listing and selling an item.

Doing a course is one thing, but actually getting one product into Amazon will teach you the process much faster. I would say, buy $100 worth of any product that costs you less than one dollar per unit, ship it to Amazon and start trying to sell it.

This will teach you what makes a good item. You’ll also learn how to use Amazon’s system and get the basics of things like freight.

You can do this easily for under $500.

Stage 2 First Product

After you’ve done your test, you want to research in detail what will be your first serious item.

The test was to learn, and this first product will make your first profits. Depending on the factory minimum order, you will probably need $3000 to $5000 at this stage.

Check the freight costs before placing your order so you can calculate the total budget and aren’t hit with any surprises. Aim to order around 1000 pieces of your first item.

This will give you enough to cover a promotion of 50 to 100 units and enough stock for 1 to 3 months, depending on how well you sell.

Stage 3 Scaling the Business

Even if you sell 1000 units of your first product and make 100% profit, you’ll have to reinvest nearly all your profit into reorders.

If you spend $5000 and now have $10,000 after three months, you will probably need to buy 2000 to 3000 units of your product to cover the next 2 to 4 months of stock. If all your money is being reinvested you can’t scale the business.

You have to wait 6 months before some of the profits can be used for new items, or find additional capital for new products. Also you are assuming that you will sell all of your first product quickly.

The reality is a few sellers do this, but usually only 20% of products do very well, 30% percent of products do okay and around 50% or more underperform. For each new item, you need $5000-$10,000 of capital, and the more you can commit, the more profit you will make 6 to 12 months later.

Don’t commit more than $5000 for your first item, and gradually use the balance capital you have once the first item is selling well.

If you shoot all your bullets at the same time, you might choose bad products because you haven’t taken the time to learn by optimizing your first product.

Stage 4 Realistic Returns

Doubling your money every 3 to 6 months is realistic.

If you buy $10,000 worth of a product at $5 a unit, and sell it for $15 a unit, after Amazon fees you should be left with around $20,000. If you reinvest the $20,000, after a further 3 to 6 months you should have $20-$40,000.

If you start with a smaller number it will take you longer before your business makes good returns. You’ll hear a lot of success stories about people starting with much less and making much more. But for every one person who brags on Facebook, there are 99 who didn’t do so well.

Amazon is a numbers game, so the more time, effort and money you put in the more profits you get out in the long run. There are no shortcuts.

The best you can do is to minimize big mistakes and to try to optimize every area of the business.

Stage 5 Breakeven

You can expect your products to breakeven in around 3 to 6 months and after that they should start to spit off profits.

If you started with $50,000 you can expect to earn around $15,000-$30,000 a month six months out. If you start with only $5,000 and sell your product for double what you paid, it’s mathematically impossible for you to make $50,000 a month in six months time.

Realistically you’ll make about $2000 to $3000 a month, maybe more if you’re lucky and if your product is extremely successful. I say lucky because nobody except Amazon knows exactly how to rank their system.

There is an element of luck when you are choosing your niche, but the more work you do the luckier you get.

Stage 6 Covering Your Costs

It’s only when you start to sell about $30,000 worth of product a month that your business can cover your living expenses and leave enough profit to reinvest for growth.

This should take you around 9 to 12 months depending on how much capital you start with.

Stage 7 $100K Month

Your business really starts to take off when you hit six figures of sales a month.

You can afford to take a decent distribution, and have a lot of profit left over for expanding your business. Less than 2% of sellers make it here, but you can do it if you consistently work towards optimizing your Amazon business.

If you have 10 products selling $10,000 a month each, you will hit this target. All you need to do is take one step at a time and keep adding on additional products.

Boost Your Sales: Amazon FBA Influencers Top Tips

I spent months trying to build my following to 10,000 people. Then I decided to try contacting a few influencers with 20,000 or more followers in my niche.

After a few emails, I got in front of over 100,000 potential customers for my products. It was much faster and cheaper to market via people with established losts then trying to build my own following.

In this episode we cover our top tips for reaching social media influencers about your Amazon business.

Keep it Personal

Whichever channel you target, remember that influencers get hundreds of emails a week asking them to promote people’s products.


Amazon Product Selection for 2021

Finding a great product can make or break your business. A lot changed in 2020 but the main strategies for finding a good product still work.

In this article we are going to cover our top tips for choosing a good product to sell on Amazon.

Sells for Between $20 and $100

If the price is below $20 Amazon’s fees eat up too much of the margin to make it worthwhile.

If the price is over $100 it’s less of an impulse buy for people and more likely they will want a brand they know, so it’s harder to sell. So aim products in the $20 to 100  range.


How To Build A $1 Million Amazon Business

Maybe you are already selling on Amazon or you are thinking about starting. In this article we cover the main growth stages building your multimillion dollar Amazon business.

Stage 1: Test

When you’re first starting out you won’t know everything about creating the best possible converting products on Amazon. The key is to just start with a small test so you can learn the process and apply it to future products.

A great way to do that is with the hundred unit test. Do some product research to select the niche to target.


Amazon Ads & PPC: Pay Per Click Pro Guide

The best place to advertise your product is on Amazon itself. The ads can be profitable, reach tens of thousands of customers and even boost your rankings.

Every ad sale also boosts your organic ranking too. Optimizing ads is one of the best ways to rapidly grow your Amazon business.

Tip 1 Broad Phrase Exact
“Exact” keywords only show when the user searches the exact words you selected. For example, if your exact phrase is steel garlic press and they search garlic press or steel press, your result will not show.

“Phrase” will show whenever the words you’ve used are searched for even if the user adds other words to the front and backend of what they’re looking for. If your keyword is garlic press but they search blue garlic press, it will still show up in the results.

“Broad” is usually the best option because your ad will show for similar and related searches. For example, if your keyword is women’s socks and the user searches buy ladies socks, your ad will still get shown.

The best is to choose your top 10 keywords then advertise for them in exact, broad and phrases all in the same campaign. Let the ads run for 2 weeks then analyze the data. That should give you more of an idea of what works in your niche.

Tip 2 Impressions
There are several ways to increase the number of impressions you get.

Amazon works differently to Google pay per click. You need to include a wide range of keywords in your product listing for it to show in the ads.

Amazon searches your product listing and uses the words it finds for both automatic campaigns and manual campaigns.If you try to advertise for garlic press but you have not included it anywhere in your listing, then your ad will not show up.

So be sure to add as many relevant keywords into your listing and back end search terms as possible. This will help your organic rank but also make your ads more relevant too!

Tip 3 Bid
Another way to boost impressions is to increase your bid.

Start with a low bid of around $.50 and increase it by $.10 at a time if you feel you need to increase your sales through advertising and impressions.

If you start high, you won’t know what works the best or you may end up overspending. By starting low and scaling up over time – you can slowly increase the bid whilst controlling your costs.

Using this strategy I got very high returns on investment from ad spending. For the ads that are performing well – just leave them running then adjust the keywords and ads not doing as well.

Tip 4 Budget
If your campaign is profitable then increase the budget.

Keep the budget low, around $10 a day, until you optimize listing impressions and returns.

You need about 2 weeks of data to see what is going on. So let your ads run for a while before making changes. Increasing the bids and budget for a profitable campaign can also destroy it – so be careful to track any changes you make so you can revert back to campaigns with good ACOS and returns.

Tip 5 ACOS
ACOS is a measure of how successful your ad campaigns are.

It shows how much you have to spend for every dollar of sales. For example, a score of 50% means you’re using $.50 of clicks for every one $1 dollar in revenue.

The lower your ACOS the less each sale is costing you. There are many ways to reduce this over time – one of the best is simply optimizing your listing so you sell more products for the same ad spend.

Tip 6 Keywords
The most important part about optimizing your pay per click is your keywords.

Make sure your keywords are included in the title, features, description and search terms of your listing. If they are not there, Amazon will not display your product for ads with those keywords

Tip 7 Page 1 Bid
On Amazon seller central you can check the estimate bid for page 1 in the advertising section.

You can use this to estimate how much you should be bidding if you are not getting enough impressions.

Amazon Products to Avoid in 2021

Any great Amazon business starts with great products! Try to find a product you really like & make it better than the competition. 

The days of just copying are over…you have to make your item the best in the niche. But before you launch…in this article we are going to cover the top types of product you should avoid selling on Amazon.

Tip 1 Electronics

This is still the most challenging type of product on Amazon. There’s a lot that can go wrong with any electronic product. Also there is a LOT of competition for top electronics products.