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The beginner's guide to selling on Amazon

A few things to consider before you start selling
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A stack of various Amazon boxes

Intro

Welcome to selling on Amazon

It’s no secret: At Amazon, we obsess over customers. And our customers want a trusted destination where they can purchase a wide variety of goods - which is what makes selling partner like you so important. We’re always looking for ways to add value for our customers and be Earth’s most customer-centric company. As an Amazon selling partner, you take part in offering those customers a better selection, better prices, and a top-notch customer experience.

Hundreds of millions of worldwide active customer accounts

195 million monthly unique visitors (in the U.S. alone)

Amazon UK prime day

$1.9+ billion sales by third-party businesses during Prime Day 2021

(source: https://press.aboutamazon.com/news-releases/news-release-details/prime-day-delivered-two-biggest-days-ever-small-medium-sized)

The Amazon edge

When you start selling on Amazon, you become part of a retail destination that’s home to all kinds of selling partners, from Fortune 500 organizations to artisan vendors who make handcrafted goods. They all sell here for a reason: to reach the hundreds of millions of customers who visit Amazon to shop.
  • More than 200,000 entrepreneurs worldwide surpassed $100,000 in sales in our stores in 2019

FAQ:

Is Amazon right for my business?

The short answer is: yes. The largest household brands sell on Amazon. So do emerging brands that will pop up on your radar soon. Small and medium-sized businesses thrive here, and they account for more than half the units sold in our stores worldwide. Whatever your business - and whatever size it is - we’re excited about you growing with us. Find your fit and start selling today.

Don't have an Amazon selling partner account yet?

£25 (excl. VAT) per month + selling fees

Before you start selling

Choose your plan

Amazon offers you the flexibility to sell one type of item or sell thousands, through Individual or Professional plans respectively (think of them as standard or premium plans). Before you commence registration, decide which plan fits your business best.Company registration details, including VAT numbe

The Individual plan costs 75p per sale while sellers using the Professional plan pay £25 per month, no matter how many items they sell. If you sell more than 35 items per month, the Professional plan makes more sense. Whichever plan you choose, don’t worry about making the wrong choice – you can change plans at any time. Note that in both cases, additional selling fees apply to the flat rates.

Plans

Individual

Professional

This plan might be right for you if:
  • You sell fewer than 35 items a month
  • You don't need advanced selling tools or programs
  • You're still deciding what to sell
  • You sell more than 35 items a month
  • You want access to APIs and more selling reports
  • You want to sell with programs like Launchpad or Handmade

Did you know:

Tools for brand owners

If you own a brand, Amazon offers tools to help you build, grow, and protect it. Enrolling in Brand Registry can help you personalize your brand and product pages, protect your trademarks and intellectual property, and improve the brand experience for customers - along with unlocking additional advertising options and recommendations on improving traffic and conversion.

What you’ll need to get started

In order to complete your registration, please ensure you have the following handy:
  • Business mail address or Amazon customer account
  • Chargeable credit card (international cards are also accepted)
  • Valid passport or ID. Identity verification protects sellers and customers
  • Company registration details, including VAT number

FAQ:

What is a VAT number and why do I get one?

If you sell goods in any European country, it’s likely you may be required to register for Value Added Tax (VAT) in each country you sell in. VAT is a tax that VAT-registered traders in the European add to the price of the goods they sell, and pass on to the national tax authorities when they file their tax returns. You may be able to claim back a portion of your VAT.

How much does it cost to sell on Amazon?

There are a few different types of selling fees you might pay, depending on your selling plan and the types of products you sell.
Subscription fees
These are the fees you pay for your selling plan, and they vary depending on which plan you select.
  • On the Professional selling plan there’s a flat fee of £25 per month and no per-item fee.
  • On the Individual selling plan there’s a 75p fee for each item sold.
Selling fees
These fees are charged per item sold, and they include referral fees (which are a percentage of the selling price and vary depending on the product’s category), and variable closing fees (which apply only to media categories).
Shipping fees
When you fulfil orders yourself, Amazon shipping rates apply. We charge these shipping rates based on the product category and shipping service selected by the buyer.
FBA fees
For products that Amazon fulfils for you (known as Fulfilment by Amazon, or FBA), there are fees for order fulfilment, storage, and optional services.
Review the fees that may be associated with your account.

Get to know Seller Central

What is Seller Central?

Once you register as an Amazon selling partner, you’ll have access to your Seller Central account. Think of Seller Central as your go-to resource for selling on Amazon. It’s a portal to your Amazon business and a one-stop shop for managing your selling account, adding product information, making inventory updates, managing payments, and finding helpful content to help you navigate your Amazon business. It’s also where you list all your products.
Below are a just few of the things you can do from Seller Central.
  • Keep track of your inventory and update your listings from the Inventory tab
  • Download custom business reports and bookmark templates you use often
  • Use customer metrics tools to monitor your seller performance
  • Contact Selling Partner Support and open help tickets using the Case Log
  • Keep track of your daily sales for all the products you sell on Amazon
Seller Central Account
Woman in a black blazer looking at her account in the Amazon Seller mobile app

Go mobile

Use the Amazon Seller App to track sales, fulfil orders, find products to sell, respond to customer questions, capture and edit professional-quality product photos, and create listings from your phone.
QR code to download the Amazon Seller app to your cellphone
Click here to download the Amazon Seller app on the Apple App Store
Click here to download the Amazon Seller app on Google Play

VAT compliance

Understanding your VAT requirements

Depending on the nature of your business, you will be required to register for a VAT number in a European country as per the regulations. This depends on multiple factors, some of which are place of business establishment, fulfilment model, and your annual sales. Having awareness of various VAT requirements, and knowing how to comply with them, will contribute to a frictionless selling experience on Amazon.
Understanding your VAT requirements

Don't have an Amazon selling partner account yet?

£25 (excl. VAT) per month + selling fees

How to list products

Listing your first product

To sell a product on Amazon, you must first create a product listing. Either match an existing listing (if somebody else is already selling the same product on Amazon), or create a new listing (if you are the first or only selling partner).

The specific way selling partners upload and list their products varies depending on their selling plan. To put it simply: selling partners using a Professional selling partner account have the option of listing their products in large batches using bulk uploading or inventory management with third-party systems, while Individual selling partners list products one at a time.
Listing your first product

Did you know:

Sell to both B2B and B2C customers with one account

Once you successfully list your product, it will become available to both B2C and B2B customers. This enables you to extend the reach of your offers from a single account without any additional fees.

What you need to start listing products

In most cases, products must have a Global Trade Item Number (GTIN), such as a UPC, an ISBN, or an EAN. Amazon uses these product IDs to identify the exact item you’re selling. If you match a listing, you won’t need to provide a product ID since it already exists. If you’re adding a product that’s new to Amazon, you may need to purchase a UPC code or request an exemption.
In addition to a product ID, here’s some of the important information that goes into each product listing:
  • SKU
  • Product title
  • Product description and bullet points
  • Product images
  • Search terms and relevant keywords

FAQ:

What are restricted product categories?

It’s important that customers are able to shop with confidence on Amazon, which is why some product categories (like certain grocery or automotive products) are known as “restricted product categories.” Amazon might require performance checks, additional fees, and other qualifications in order for you to sell certain brands or list items within restricted categories. You’ll be able to request approval from within Seller Central.

Successful listing = Successful launch

Following best practices for adding listings can have a big impact on their success. Make it easy for shoppers to find your offers by adding descriptive titles, clear images, and concise feature bullets to your items. Avoid things that could negatively impact your launch:
Variation issues in products on Amazon UK

Variation issues

Products that vary only by colour, scent, or size might be a good candidate for listing as variations. Ask yourself if the customer would expect to find the products together on the same page. If not, list them separately.
The Image compliance details on Amazon UK

Image compliance

Your images must be at least 500 x 500 pixels (increase the size to 1 000 x 1 000 for high-quality listings) and set against a plain white background. The product should fill at least 80% of the image area.
Amazon UK products UPCs and GTINs

Product IDs

Make sure you’re meeting the requirements for product UPCs and GTINs (Global Trade Item Number). Consistency in these codes helps promote confidence in the range of products shown in the Amazon catalogue.

Don't have an Amazon selling partner account yet?

£25 (excl. VAT) per month + selling fees

The product detail page

Amazon Seller Central product detail page showing where descriptions go
A product detail page is where customers view a product sold on Amazon. If you’ve shopped on Amazon, you’ll probably recognize the product detail page. It’s where customers can find all the relevant information about a particular item.

When multiple selling partners offer the same product, Amazon combines data from all the offers into one product detail page (so we can present customers with the best experience). You can propose product information on a product detail page, along with other selling partners and manufacturers, and request detail page reviews if you think the information is not correct.

As you’re building your product detail pages, try to think about what will best help customers find your products, discover answers to their questions, and make a purchasing decision. Aim for the ultimate customer experience by making your listings concise, accurate, and easy to understand.
1.
Title
200 characters max, capitalize the first letter of every word
2.
Images
500 x 500 or 1 000 x 1 000 pixels to increase listing quality
3.
Variations
Such as different colours, scents, or sizes
4.
Bullet points
Short, descriptive sentences highlighting key features and benefits
5.
Featured offer ("Buy Box")
The featured offer on a detail page. Customers can add to their cart or “Buy Now”
6.
Other offers
The same product sold by multiple selling partners offering a different price, shipping options, etc.
7.
Description
Keywords improve the chances that people will find your listing

One account for all Europe

Amazon has unified its online European stores, so you can sell, create and manage your product offers and control your inventory throughout the Europe, all from one European selling partner account.
Sell across Europe
Take your business beyond borders and reach millions of customers all across Europe, through amazon.co.uk, amazon.de, amazon.fr, amazon.it and amazon.es
Learn more
Amazon UK products UPCs and GTINs

VAT tools and resources

Every country in Europe has its own VAT laws; Amazon’s VAT support services help you navigate VAT easily and efficiently – and at no cost for the first year.
Learn more at VAT Knowledge Centre

Translation services

Build stronger customer relationships by servicing them in their own language. Use Amazon’s translation services to translate your product offers and information.

How to deliver products

Selecting the right fulfilment option

Amazon selling partners have two options for getting shoppers their stuff: You can do it yourself, maintaining your own inventory and shipping products to customers (merchant-fulfilment), or have Amazon take responsibility for packaging, labeling, and shipping products through Fulfilment by Amazon (FBA). Each method has its own set of benefits; you just have to decide which one is right for your business.
Selecting the right fulfilment option

The benefits of Fulfilment by Amazon

Around the world, Amazon has more than 175 fulfilment centres which contain more than 150 million square feet of storage space. With FBA, you get to store your goods on those shelves. You also get Amazon’s world-class customer service and returns, along with other advantages (like automatic Prime eligibility and Free Super Saver Shipping) that help you scale your business, fast.
Three sponsored product listings of water bottles available with Amazon Prime shipping

Your Products Fulfilled across Europe

Fulfilment by Amazon is the ultimate solution to build up and grow your international brand identity. Start selling in Europe by choosing the countries where you want to expand and let Amazon store and distribute your products according to the expected customer demand, at no additional cost to you.
By selling in Europe with FBA, you may save up to 53% and increase your sales up to 30%; in addition, you will benefit from Amazon faster delivery and the prime badge!
Fulfillment Across Europe

Did you know:

You pay only for the services you use!

Our flexible rate structure makes it easy to be more competitive. With FBA, you only pay for the services you use.
There are no subscription fees, contracts or minimum inventory requirements.
Ship your products to our fulfilment centres and pay for fulfilment services and storage space used.

How Fulfilment by Amazon works

Step 1

Ship your inventory to Amazon. It will be scanned and made available for sale.

Step 2

With each order, Amazon packages and ships the product directly to the customer.

Step 3

Amazon collects payment from the customer and pays you available funds every two weeks.

Step 4

Amazon’s customer service team handles questions, returns, and refunds.

If you’re fulfilling your own orders

Merchant-fulfilled simply means you store and ship products directly to customers yourself. Amazon charges shipping rates based on the product category and shipping service selected by the customer, then passes the amount on to you in the form of a shipping credit.

Set shipping rates apply to all products sold with an Individual plan, so it’s important to make sure you can still price items profitably. Amazon’s Buy Shipping tool can help you get a great deal on shipping labels with Amazon’s trusted network of shipping partners, to ship and confirm your orders, and track your shipments

Seller Fulfilled Prime allows you deliver products directly from your own warehouse using the Prime badge, that offers free, express delivery to Prime customers. This not only boosts your visibility, it has been proven to increase customer trust, leading to increased sales.
If you’re fulfilling your own orders

Don't have an Amazon selling partner account yet?

£25 (excl. VAT) per month + selling fees

You’ve made your first sale. What’s next?

Managing your Amazon business

Your first sale is a big milestone - but it’s just the beginning of your growth opportunities selling on Amazon. Once your store is up and running, there are a few important things to keep in mind.

Performance metrics (and why they matter)

Amazon selling partners operate at a high standard so we can provide a seamless, delightful shopping experience. We call it being customer-obsessed, and as an Amazon selling partner it means keeping an eye on these key metrics:
  • Order defect rate (a measure of a selling partner’s customer service standards): < 1%
  • Pre-fulfilment cancel rate (initiated by the selling partner before shipment): < 2.5%
  • Late shipment rate (orders that ship after the expected date): < 4%
You can keep tabs on your performance and make sure you’re meeting your targets in Seller Central.
Graph showing the health of an Amazon seller account

Customer reviews

Customer product reviews are an integral part of the shopping experience on Amazon, and they benefit both customers and sellers. Make sure you’re familiar with the right way and wrong way to get more product reviews and avoid policy violations.

Amazon jargon:

Seller University

Seller University is an online resource from Amazon, with videos featuring step-by-step guides, tutorials, and training to help entrepreneurs start (and grow) their Amazon business.

Don't have an Amazon selling partner account yet?

£25 (excl. VAT) per month + selling fees

Opportunities for business growth

This is only the beginning

The moment you’re selling on Amazon is the moment you can start growing your Amazon business. Once you’ve launched your business, Amazon has tools in place to help you take your business to the next level (or the next couple of levels).

Advertising

Amazon’s advertising solutions create new ways for you to reach and engage shoppers, regardless of whether they’re just starting to compare products, or ready to make a purchase. Ads show up right where customers will see them (like the first page of search results or product detail pages).

Amazon offers three advertising solutions, and all of them are accessible through Seller Central.
1. Sponsored Products
Sponsored Products are ads for individual product listings on Amazon, so they help drive product visibility (and product sales). They appear on search results pages and product detail pages.
2. Sponsored Brands
Sponsored Brands showcase your brand and product portfolio. They’re search-result ads that feature your brand logo, a custom headline, and up to three of your products.
3. Amazon Stores
Stores are custom multipage shopping destinations for individual brands that let you share your brand story and product offerings. (And you don’t need any website experience to use them).

Promotions and coupons

Customers want to save, and promotions are an incentive to make a purchase now. There are three types of promotions: money off, free shipping, and buy one, get one free. You can also offer percentage or money-off discounts with digital coupons.

Global expansion

Selling globally is a huge milestone for any business. It means hundreds of millions of new customers and the potential for a big boost in sales. Global expansion has a lot of moving parts, but with Amazon Global Selling, you get to use Amazon’s global infrastructure to put your products in front of a worldwide audience.

When it’s time to take your business to the next level, use Amazon Global Selling to list and sell your products on any of our online stores in North America, Europe, and Asia.

What makes a great selling partner?

A checklist for growth

Opportunities for growth are all around you - but here are a few things to try in your first 90 days as an Amazon selling partner.
Keep an eye on your account health in Seller Central
Use Fulfilment by Amazon or Seller Fulfilled Prime
Advertise your listings or offer deals and coupons
Enroll in Brand Registry and create enhanced brand content
Expand your selection by listing more products
Use the Automated Pricing Tool in Seller Central

Your first 90 days

The first three months after you launch your Amazon business are an important time for establishing practices that will boost your performance from there on.
£25 (excl. VAT) per month + selling fees
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