There’s no question about it – finding a product to sell with Amazon FBA can be pretty tough and time consuming, and it can feel like you’re searching for a needle in a haystack…especially, if you don’t know what you’re doing!
To remove any confusion that you might have about whether a product that you’ve found is a good one, and to ensure that you know what type of products you should be looking for when it comes to Amazon FBA, I’m going to walk you through the different characteristics that a good Amazon FBA product has, which should hopefully make the process much easier for you to follow, helping you to find something to sell much quicker than before.
1. Sales Demand
Above all else, any product that you are considering selling on Amazon needs to have existing sales demand from customers. The reason that this is so important is because Amazon isn’t really the type of place that people go on to, to mindlessly shop. Typically, Amazon customers already have a product in mind that they want to buy, but, they just don’t know who they want to buy it from or exactly how much they want to spend.
For that reason, any type of product that you want to sell on Amazon needs to already have some sales demand from customers. Even if you have the best product in the world, if customers aren’t logging on to amazon to search for it, the majority aren’t going to know it exists, and it’ll be sat in amazon’s warehouse collecting dust for months to come, without you making a cent in profit.
Understanding a product’s sales demand can be done really easily using a tool named Helium 10, which allows you to check how much money sellers are making on a monthly basis, helping you to verify whether your chosen product has enough demand to be worth selling.
When assessing any product to sell, the minimum level of sales demand that it needs to have is 3 times your monthly profit target.
So if you’re looking to make $1000 profit per month, once you’ve searched on Amazon for your product niche and run Helium 10, you should be looking for at least 3 sellers that are making $3000 in monthly revenues.
If the product that you’ve found doesn’t meet this threshold, then it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to sell units quickly enough to make selling on Amazon worthwhile.
In addition to strong sales demand, your chosen product needs to make you profit, ideally having a profit margin of at least 30%, which means that for every $10 of revenue that you generate, you’re making $3 profit.
This is really important to verify before progressing with any product, because the worst thing that can happen is you place an order with a supplier, start selling on Amazon, and then later find out that you’re running at a big fat loss.
Fortunately, calculating profit is relatively straightforward to do and you can more or less work out what it will be without having to spend any money with suppliers. To work out a rough estimate during your initial stages of product research, all you need to do is get your sales price and deduct Amazon’s referral and fulfilment fees,as well as your product’s total cost.
Once you’ve got that figure, you have your profit, and to work out your profit margin, simply divide this by your sales price. If you want to be as precise as possible and don’t want to take any risks, then use my free profit calculator.
3. Small & Lightweight
Another feature of a product that will make your selling experience much easier, is if it’s small and light in weight.
Whilst Amazon will allow you to sell pretty much any sized product, the smaller and lightweight your product, the bigger advantage you’ll have versus other sellers, because you’ll incur smaller fulfilment, storage, and shipping charges, boosting your level of profits. You’ll also have the option of air shipping available to you if you want to quickly get more stock in to an amazon warehouse, something that isn’t going to be possible if your product is too bulky.
So, as a rule of thumb, when searching for a product, try to find something that’s small enough that it could fit into a shoebox and weighs less than 500g. That way, you won’t find yourself getting huge storage and shipping charges each month, killing any of the profit that you’ve made. Like with sales demand and profitability, you can estimate the likely size and weight of your product before placing an order, by looking up the details of your competitors using Helium 10, or ordering a sample from a supplier and then measuring it yourself.
4. Not Fragile
Regardless of how big of small your product is, you’ll also want to make sure that it’s not fragile and made of moving parts – for example a glass sweet jar.
The reason that these type of products should be avoided, is that there’s an increased risk of them getting damaged when en route to the amazon fulfilment center and then the customer, meaning you’ll end up with a refund request and a 1 star review.
From my 4 years of selling on Amazon, I’ve come to terms with the fact that refunds are always going to be made by the customer, so if you can find as many ways to reduce the chances of this happening to a large number of units that you’ve sold, then you should do it. Selling a product that’s made of lots of moving parts means that there’s a higher chance that the customer is going to break it and then return to for a refund, or that some of the parts of your product may go missing or get lost, which again could result in a refund request and a bad review. For that reason, any product that you look to sell with Amazon FBA, should be something that’s quite sturdy and won’t break easily.
5. Not Seasonal / Trending
When you do find your chosen product and start selling, of course you want to make as much money as possible every single month of the year. For that reason, the best type of Amazon FBA products to sell are those that aren’t seasonal or trending, so ones that only sell well in the summer or winter months, or fad products suddenly seem to come out of nowhere.
Examples of seasonal products to avoid could be snorkelling gear or beach towels, which would only have high levels of demand in the summer months, before reducing substantially when it gets cooler. If you’re unsure as to whether as product that you’ve found is seasonal or a fad, then you can simply use the Helium 10 Chrome Extension, which will show you a nice sales chart on every sellers amazon listing. If you see the sales graph looks a bit like a rollercoaster going up and down, that implies that it’s a trending or seasonal product that would be better if avoided.
The final characteristic that I usually look in a product to sell on Amazon, is something that is brandable.
Studies have proven that customers prefer to buy branded products over unbranded ones, and if you can nail the branding on your product then you’ll be able to enjoy numerous benefits such as being able to charge a premium over competitors, and customers recommending and returning to buy your other products if they like what your brand represents.
It’s important to note that not every product is going to enjoy the benefits of being branded – some household items, such as freezer bags or coathangers for example, just aren’t going to be the type of product that a customer would want to pay more for just because its branded, so make sure that when assessing a product that you’ve found, that your research shows that it’s the type of product that would do well with some strong branding.
Whilst this list might make you feel as though finding a product is going to be an impossible task, trust me – there are millions of products that meet all this criteria, and they’re all just waiting to be found. So print this list off or write it down, and then start cracking on with finding a product to sell with Amazon FBA. Above all else, remember that your product absolutely must have sales demand and be profitable in order to be a success, and both of these can be checked and verified using Helium 10 and my profit calculator.
If you’d like to be guided & helped with finding an Amazon FBA product, check out the Smashers Academy, or watch my free training.
You might also like to hear about my own experience of being an Amazon FBA seller, read about it here.