Can You Really Guarantee Amazon Sales?
Online arbitrage sellers, I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: prioritise stock turnover over profit. Once you’re advanced, you can afford to take more risks, but it’s vital that you keep the cash flow rolling when you’re in your first few months. There’s not a lot you can do if you’re cash is sat in slow selling products. If you get that money back to you quicker, even if it’s lower than you want, at least you can make better choices with it.
There are so many products that have a higher price on Amazon than they do elsewhere. That number has to be in the hundreds of thousands, or millions. Absolutely loads. But just because there’s a theoretical flip doesn’t mean there’s an actual arbitrage opportunity. So many listings on Amazon rarely sell/don’t rank well/barely attract traffic. We want products that will sell.
It’s very easy to distinguish between products that will sell, the ones that will only sell if the price is right and the ones that you will struggle to shift. It’s essential that you learn how to tell the difference as soon as possible.
Guaranteed Amazon Arbitrage Sales Checklist
Here’s the checklist to make sure you’re only buying products that are guaranteed to sell on Amazon:
- Sales Rank History. Today’s Sales Rank means nothing. It moves constantly, and a good one on a particular day could be thanks to one fluke sale. Check on Keepa to see whether sales are seasonal, infrequent or pretty much inevitable.
- Active Buy Box. Listings without an active Buy Box – particular those than haven’t had one for some time – struggle to rank in Amazon’s search results. While you can revive it, Amazon can be unpredictable.
- Buy Box history. Knowing the historic Buy Box price gives you full visibility on whether it’s been stable at a particular price range, or not. If it’s likely to dive down and you’re wanting to sell it for a profit, it might not be worth the risk.
- Amazon stock. Does Amazon stock the product? If yes, the chances of you claiming the Buy Box diminishes in many product categories.
- Number of competitors. Are they selling through FBA? The more there are, the more different tactics you’ll have to deal with, such as price plunging.
- Stock levels. Come across a listing that says there are “only X remaining”, means that the current Buy box owner has shallow stock. If it doesn’t, they went deep, and are more likely to drop the price if other competition shows up. You want to compete against the ones that will sell out soon.
- Availability of the deal. Have you cleared the shelf, or might someone have come in and swept the rest up after you. It’s all well and good knowing the current Amazon competition, but you’re in trouble if more swoop in afterwards at a price that’s barely profitable for you.
- Your price. Are you planning to sell at the current Buy Box, below or above it? The higher it goes, the slower it will sell. You may even knock it out of your customers’ affordability range.
- Repricing strategy. Whether you reprice manually or use a service like Bqool, repricing can be the difference between whether you sell or not. Keeping within Buy Box eligibility.
Yes, there’s a lot to take into consideration, but you need to be sure of all of them if you want to guarantee sales.
The Common Factor: Keepa
What links all of these things is Keepa. I use the free Google Chrome extension for the majority of mine, and my team’s deal-sourcing analysis. It’s able to answer so many questions about how the Sales Rank history, Buy Box history, whether Amazon sells the product, the best way to price, reprice and so much more.
The way to guarantee that your product will sell is to master Keepa. It provides so much data, and it’s really up to you to get your head around the most useful things and apply them to your deal analysis process. Break it down to the factors you care about, the time scale you care about and work from there.
There’s so many alleged solutions for Amazon product sourcing, but none of them will be more capable of predicting potential sales than by checking the things above. The Sales Rank history, Buy Box history and your price are probably the most vital elements to consider before you make a purchase and attempt to sell an item on Amazon.
Does Everything You Buy Have to Sell?
In your early days, absolutely. Amazon selling isn’t for everyone, and you don’t want a knockback of slow-moving products when you’re beginning your journey. It’s discouraging and it’s going to lead most people to give up early. Tick off a list of criteria – like the ones above (as well as some for profit and ROI) to act as your foundation.
You should aim for everything to sell eventually, but there’s often a lot more potential for high ROI if you take a few risks. One of my most notable ones was finding a hammock mispriced at a sixth of the price it should have been. Although it had only sold once in the past year, the fact that my return on investment would have been in the hundreds of percent, it was worth taking the chance. I could have afforded for it to sit in an Amazon fulfilment centre for a while (even though it didn’t; selling the week it got there).
When I train others to source for me, I make them tick off a lot of different product criteria first, because it saves a lot of time. They haven’t got the experience or insight of what goes on later in the process to know what’s worth experimenting with and what isn’t. Because of this, when I’m sourcing myself, I can skip over quite a lot of the above factors. However, Keepa is always going to give me the answers I need.
If Keepa is new to you, you’re probably interested in more of the Amazon selling solutions I use. Find them here.