Does Selling on Amazon Make Sense for My Retail Business?

Amazon Index

Since we released our integration, we’ve been hearing this question from many of our retailers. It’s true that Amazon is the most popular eCommerce web site (in the West, at least) and, if you list your products, you get (nearly) guaranteed exposure to millions of shoppers.

That said, it’s always important to weigh your options. What works for one store doesn’t always work for another. Here are three crucial questions you need to ask before you commit to Amazon Marketplace:

  1. Will I make enough margin? In addition to a modest Pro-Merchant Seller fee ($39.99 in the US / £25 in the UK), Amazon charges Per-Item Sellers Fees that vary based on category. On average, it’s 15% of the total sale price.

    Therefore, if your margins are already low, you need to be sure that an added 15% won’t push you over the edge in terms of profitability.

    Even if this is the case with most of your items, we often find retailers can identify a subset that could be sold on Amazon for a healthy profit.

    (You can find more information on seller fees for the US here and for the UK here.)

  2. Is my stock keeping up to scratch? The most common way of being disqualified is to cancel too many orders. If you keep your quantities up-to-date in your point-of-sale, NitroSell eCommerce will ensure those on Amazon always correspond. In this way, you can be sure that you’ll never sell an item that’s out of stock.

    If, on the other hand, you are full of uncertainty about your stock levels, you’ll need to fix that first. The best approach is to set aside a quiet half day, or a day you’re not trading, and do a complete stock take. Once you have your stock levels in order and you have a good process in place to keep them up-to-date, we can take it from there!

  3. Do I have the item information I need? The most basic requirement is that you have a standard product identifier (ID) for every item you’d like to list. This can be one of: UPC, EAN, ISBN, Gtin, or ASIN. Typically, if you don’t, your suppliers will be able to provide them.

    (If not, you can buy UPCs or EANs in bulk from specialized suppliers and have them registered against your ‘uncoded’ products.)

    The other data requirements are largely category-dependent. In general, it makes sense to at least have:

    • Good product titles: the format recommended by Amazon is: Brand Department Name (Size Color [if applicable])
    • A minimum of one image per product; images should always be at least 1001 pixels on the longest edge;
    • The product brand name;
    • An extended description that doesn’t exceed 2,000 characters;
    • Item weights in lbs, grams, or kilograms (if you intend to vary shipping charges by weight).

If you meet these three criteria, you’re good to go! If not, we recommend you work on them before you sign up for a free trial.

The good news is that, if are you ready, you can sign up for our solution with a no-commitment, 30-day free trial. We won’t even charge you for training if you find that Amazon isn’t a good fit!

To learn more about NitroSell eCommerce for Amazon and to sign up today, click here.

Post on the costs associated with the NitroSell Amazon integration.