Many people who are new to selling on Amazon often get a shock when this happens. You create a new listing in your account because you need to get a FNSKU barcode/label for your product packaging. You then enter the product title, price and save the listing. Amazon doesn’t give you any warnings and your listing is created. You get your FNSKU label and forget about it for now, as you have other things to work on.
Then, after some time, when you log back into your account, you learn that your listing is SUPPRESSED!
And that’s when the panic starts! What happened? Has Amazon suspended your listing? Do you need to create a new listing? Do you need to contact Amazon support?
None of that. And for God’s sake, please don’t delete that listing or create a new one! If you do this, your FNSKU code will change. If you’ve already done your product packaging, you’ll have to use labels to change it to the new code for the new listing.
I have previously discussed factory inspections in China on my blog, but today I want to specifically delve into the pre-shipment inspection, which is the inspection you do when your goods are finished and ready for dispatch. Do you really have to spend all that money on a FULL inspection, or you can get away with a PARTIAL inspection? Let’s find out!
1) Alibaba’s service team, which costs $48. This is not really a pre-shipment inspection service as all they check is carton quantity (whether or not it is correct), one item for visual defects and one carton for packaging and shipping marks. I don’t recommend you use this at all, as it won’t tell you anything about the quality of the goods in your order.
I have been very lazy with blog posts for the last three months, but there has been a good reason for that! In August, September, October and November, I invested hundreds of hours into updating my Amazon Sharks video course for 2020! And I’m happy to announce that I have finally finished work on the course update!
This means just two things:
Amazon Sharks now is fully updated for 2020 to include the latest changes and rules on Amazon selling, advertising, sourcing, etc.
I will have more time to put out content on this blog.
The Amazon Sharks course was created early in 2018, and it’s not that the content has become outdated, but recently there have been a few major changes on the platform that have required me to update dozens of videos in the course, such as:
This is a quick post about a feature recently introduced by Amazon that many sellers may not have even noticed yet. The Search Term report is now available within the seller dashboard on the Ad Group settings page, and all of the relevant data is available within the web interface, so there’s no need to download anything anymore:
Previously, in order to access the Search Term report, sellers had to go to Advertising reports to generate and download the .csv file. You then had to open the spreadsheet to access your data on clicks, search terms, ACoS and other aspects of your business. It’s no longer necessary to do this as the Search Term report is now available directly in the web interface.
Now, Amazon still allows you to download the report, too, and there are various other report types you can download. However, for your day-to-day PPC optimisation work, the web option is all you need.
When you start selling on Amazon, one of the first tasks you will face is the formation of your company OR registering as a Sole Trader, depending on which business type you choose. With this task comes the dilemma of choosing your business name.
In the case of registering as a Sole Trader, you don’t have to worry about the business name. Even though, in the UK, you can register a business name (trading name) as a Sole Trader, Amazon does not accept or use it. So, if you’re starting out as a Sole Trader, Amazon will simply use your full name as the business name. That means you don’t have to spend any time trying to figure out a separate business name.
With limited companies (Ltd.), it’s different. You will have to come up with a name for your business, and this is where many people get stuck and confused.
What name should I use? Do I have to match my company name with the brand name of my products? What happens if I expand into other niches and brands in the future? These are all good questions, and I will try to help you out and give advice on the best ways to handle this.
Each product you send to an Amazon FBA warehouse needs to have a barcode on it (or on its packaging). Whether you choose to use FNSKU barcodes or EAN barcodes (with the stickerless inventory option), you must make sure you have the appropriate barcodes in place so that Amazon can scan your items into their system upon arrival at the warehouse.
If you’re completely new to Amazon and don’t know where to get barcodes, here’s exactly what you need to do:
If you are opting to use EAN barcodes, you can simply use them straight away, without creating the corresponding listing. You simply get the code from GS1, then use a barcode generating service (such as https://barcode.tec-it.com/en) and send the image to your designer.
With that said, I would still recommend that you create the product listing first, just in case Amazon rejects the barcode for some weird reason.
If you want to use FNSKU barcodes, simply create the product listing first in your Amazon account. Go to Inventory and select the item. Then, from the menu, choose “Print Item Labels”. The provided file will contain multiple barcodes, but don’t worry! These are all the same and your designer will simply crop out one to use on your product’s packaging design.
Many sellers are scared away from the whole importing from China process because they think that shipping costs are too expensive. I recently had a blog comment from Michael, which perfectly illustrates this common frustration:
I just got a quick online quote from FedEx for collecting these 5 boxes from the factory address and delivering at my home address and it was $1880 USD! Yikes.
If I look on AliExpress for the same item, I can order 1pc for $125 delivered from a reseller.
I know this is all part of the learning curve, but why is shipping 5 boxes so expensive? Is it because they are relatively large, but light in weight?
Is the only way to make this cost-effective simply to order more units? Enough for a few pallets? Advice is greatly appreciated.
I get comments and questions like this one all the time, so let’s try to debunk the expensive shipping myth and find out exactly why Michael’s shipping quote was so high.
To follow up on my recent Amazon France update, I want to share my progress on another hugely popular Amazon European marketplace—Amazon.de! I have been amazed by the results I have seen so far, so I hope this post will inspire more sellers to take action, register for the Pan-European program and expand their international sales.
I started selling in Germany in August. In the beginning, I was just using my UK stock via the European Fulfilment Network (EFN) FBA program. As you can see, I made 26 sales in August, which wasn’t a full month as I started selling on the 10th of August:
This resulted in a profit of about €78, as I’m selling the product for €9.99 with a profit of €3 per unit sold. My initial goal with the European expansion was to make at least 25 sales a month in each country in order to cover my VAT service costs, so I was happy to see that I reached that goal in the first month without even switching on the Pan-EU program.
Let’s talk about failure. I’m not a huge fan of the concept, but let’s be honest, business is a risky thing and there are no guarantees. Whether you’re starting an ice cream shop or an Amazon FBA business, things don’t always go as planned. There may come a time when you simply have to face the fact that you have failed.
Luckily for us, with an Amazon FBA business, failure will usually only happen on a “product level”. That’s what I like about this business. There’s always another product out there that you can work on and be successful with. One failing product doesn’t mean you have to stop altogether. In fact, in most cases, you will come out of such situations much STRONGER. The additional knowledge and experience you gain will make your second, third and fourth product launch much easier, and you’ll have a much higher chance of success.
In today’s blog post, I want to share my thoughts on the right time to cut a losing product and move on. What indicators are there that show you that investing more time and money into a product is not worth it? What can you do to minimise your losses and ideally recoup your investment?
It’s time to talk about Amazon’s Pan-European (Pan-EU) program. In last week’s blog post, I shared my initial results from expanding my Amazon UK FBA business to France. Since then, many blog readers have asked me to cover in detail how the Pan-EU program works, how much it costs, the enrolment process, etc. Today, we’ll do exactly that. I’ll cover all of these questions in detail and show you how you can double your Amazon UK FBA sales with the Pan-EU program.
Before we get started, I want to give you a quick update on my Amazon Germany sales. Since I enrolled in the Pan-EU program last week, my sales in Germany have already skyrocketed! On Tuesday, I made 16 sales.
Yesterday, I made 15 sales. Hopefully, that’s just the beginning! I will do a full blog post on my Amazon.de progress later on this year, but just so you know, the Pan-EU programs WORKS and you’re leaving tons of money on the table if you’re not using it.