It can be hard to figure out what to sell on Amazon, especially for beginners. Amazon sells more than 398 million products, and beginners – and even experiences sellers – can have difficulty sorting through all of it to find the best niche.
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This guide will help complete the search for the best products to sell on Amazon, as well as give guidance on how to start selling effectively on Amazon by using advanced analytics and product monitoring software.
For beginner, selling on Amazon is a good first step in learning about ecommerce, as Amazon’s FBA (Fulfilled by Amazon) program eliminates headaches associated with fulfilling orders online. There are pros and cons to selling on Amazon, so this might not be for everyone.
Even if Amazon is processing and fulfilling the orders, sellers still need to identify the best products to sell in order to make a good income. This guide helps figure out what to sell on Amazon, and once a profitable product category is identified, sellers can develop and sell their own products, which maximizes the amount earned on each sale.
Here’s What You’ll Need in Order to Find the Best Products to Sell Online with Amazon
- Amazon Associates Account – Allows users to earn commissions on items customers purchase after visiting the site.
- Amazon Seller Account – Critical for those who want to sell products directly through Amazon’s platform.
- Ahrefs Account – a tool to find keywords and other SEO opportunities for a website and product listings.
- JungleScout Account – purpose-built to help Amazon sellers and affiliate marketers identify hot products on Amazon.
- Passion for a profitable lineup of niche products to sell
Selling online is time consuming and requires trial and error, so failure will be part of the journey. When a product flops, draw on passion for the line-up of products to keep going. Sellers who have a burning passion for the market they’re in will be better able to sense trends and put themselves in their customer’s shoes.
1. Discover what Amazon Pages the Big Boys are Pushing Traffic To
To focus efforts on products likely to sell, try to uncover where major markets players are pushing traffic on Amazon, as they have massive marketing and analytics teams to avoid wasting time on products that don’t sell. Take advantage of these major players’ research.
Step by step guide to finding proven products
- Find big publishers in the same space and enter their domain into Ahref’s site explorer.
- Click on outgoing links.
- Sort by linked domains to see how many links they are sending to Amazon.
- Dig into those links deeper by studying anchor text to see which products they link to.
For example, entering MensHealth.com into Ahrefs shows the Amazon pages that the magazine is sending their viewers to. MensHealth almost certainly earns a commission on Amazon sales they generate. For example, they are sending customers to the “Best Earphones for Working Out” which are around $180, so they are generating a nice big affiliate commission at the end of the sale. Clues like this can help to get inside the heads of major players.
Also consider what times of year an item sells best. Decide whether the crazy volume is worth months of not selling.
2. Use Amazon Reviews to Find Product Market Gaps
Since selling physical products online is a $1 trillion industry, consider selling digital products or a combination of the two. Analyze online customer reviews to see what people are raving or upset about, and use this as an inspiration for how products should work and function. When looking at a category, always look for best sellers as this is how Amazon calculates seller rank.
3. Look For Listings with Few Customer Reviews
A key to successfully listing and selling a product on Amazon is having the item listed on the first page of search results so customers see it first when searching for a product. Look for products with less than 30-50 reviews, and if the top Amazon listings only have a few reviews, those are the best. Amazon ranks products heavily based on reviews, and the fewer reviews competing products have, the faster a seller’s products climb up in the ranks when they generate sales. Take note of how competition is generating and moderating Amazon customer reviews as this will have a big role in succeeding on Amazon.
4. Food – One of the Rising Products to Sell on Amazon
Food has become a hot, trendy category with Amazon’s launch of AmazonFresh and Prime Pantry, and there are many resources for researching and learning what types of food are rising and falling in popularity. Some profitable food items are geared towards health-conscious people who are willing to pay more to live a healthier life. These items can change based on new research and studies, so it can be possible to jump in on the beginning of a profitable trend. Look for current trends on Google Trends.
Since the health food market is so diverse, it would be impossible to build an inventory of products to meet every need. But it’s not necessary to have products in inventory to make money; build an affiliate marketing site to cash in on other healthy food products.
Take a comprehensive approach to jump into the health foods market online that includes products for sale on Amazon. Market these and other products with an effective affiliate marketing site to generate traffic and build personal credibility while selling items through Amazon.
5. How to Find Products to Sell on Amazon with JungleScout
While general online trends are helpful in pointing sellers in the right direction, there is no substitute for in-depth analysis of items listed for sale on Amazon. A great tool for this is JungleScout. The platform can be used to see:
- The top selling Amazon items, based on search terms
- Estimated sales for individual Amazon listings
- Average price for a category
- Average number of reviews an item receives
- Estimated revenue based on sales metrics
6. Find Products to Wholesale on Amazon
Wholesaling an item means purchasing a product in bulk directly form a manufacturer or supplier and selling the items individually on Amazon at retail price. To wholesale an item it is necessary to establish a relationship with the supplier, which can be a long, time-consuming process. Ensure that the manufacturer is both reputable and reliable. Sourcify is a good tool for vetting manufacturers.
Pros of wholesaling on Amazon
- Product development and production is taken care of by the manufacturer.
- Either fulfill orders personally or place products in the Amazon FBA program.
- If successful, powerful relationships with industry juggernauts will be built.
- Pricing and profit margins are more predictable.
Cons of wholesaling on Amazon
- Selling someone else’s product instead of building up a private label, which means margins are tighter.
- Manufacturers can stop sellers from carrying their products if they don’t like the way the seller operates.
- Having to compete with other Amazon sellers for the right to sell products on Amazon.
- Up-front investment required to acquire bulk products creates a financial risk for the seller.
When ready to launch an Amazon wholesaling business, search for products that aren’t already sold on Amazon, or find a way to steal away a manufacturer from another wholesaler. A word of caution, however: being at the mercy of a manufacturer can be frustrating.
7. Test Products You Think are Hot with an Affiliate Site
After finding a product to sell on Amazon, first test a product category with an affiliate marketing site. It’s better to slowly spend money and time to figure out what will give ROI than spend a lot of money on the next idea. This allows sellers to assess traffic on a site and earn a commission from product sales. It’s recommended to open an Amazon Affiliate account, and build relationships with other sites. Amazon affiliation earns about 53% of ecommerce growth.
Sellers can easily retool an affiliate site to market their own product listings on Amazon, and not have to struggle with launching an online store with no inventory. It also allows sellers to gather information without upfront product costs of acquiring or developing products. Accurate information is what separates winners from losers in in ecommerce.
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8. Find and Vet Suppliers for the Products You Want to Sell on Amazon
Finding products that consumers want is important, but next find a way to manufacture private label products to help meet the needs of future customers. Poor quality products will bring a lot of negative Amazon customer reviews.
To find reliable suppliers for private label Amazon products:
- Decide between a single overseas manufacturer to produce a product from start to finish (more expensive) and bidding around to find different suppliers for different aspects of a product (more risky).
- Use reputable sites to research overseas manufacturers with experience necessary to produce the product reliably:
- Send feeler emails to at least ten different potential manufacturers. The way they handle communication tells a lot.
- Order samples from at least two different suppliers to see if their quality is as good as they claim.
As a business grows, sellers will build relationships with overseas suppliers and other individuals in the industry who can give information on who they trust overseas. In the beginning, however, finding a quality supplier can be a hard journey.
9. Avoid Selling Products on Amazon in Categories Dominated by Big Brands
Each stage of the process of selecting products to sell on Amazon requires keeping an eye on major competitors. This list will change from week to week, but most importantly sellers should look for major manufacturers entering their space. It’s a good idea to have a google sheet which is updated every week that shows competitors, including links to their websites and online marketing material. Doing this over time will develop a strong sense of how competitive the market is.
Major brands entering a space means there is a high demand for a specific product or service, and for sellers in the early stages of finding an Amazon product, this is a major stop sign. It takes a lot of energy to fight a major competitor and will not likely be the most efficient use of time and energy.
10. Search Product Listing Ads in Ahrefs Keyword Explorer
Keywords and product listings can be discovered through Ahrefs, and this information can help sellers discover the most profitable items to sell on Amazon. Besides seeing what the major sites are referencing and pushing traffic to, Ahrefs can be used to give sellers new ideas and better focus existing effforts by helping with keyword research, which is a key ingredient in marketing.
How to discover new Amazon product opportunities with Ahrefs:
- Enter a few 2-3 word phrases associated with types of products considered for selling.
- Ahrefs uses the terms to deliver keywords and topics related to the products. Review results for inspiration.
- Find most popular keywords and phrases that have a shopping icon next to them. Google displays products on the result page for these terms, which means that Google thinks people searching for these specific terms are ready to buy.
- Do a Google search to see which products Google is displaying for these terms. If the most popular search engine that has vast amounts of data thinks online shoppers are using a term to search for specific sets of products, pay attention.
As online product marketers, sellers are responsible for making sure their Amazon product listings rank well for terms that their shoppers are typing into Google and Amazon.
11. Avoid Expensive Returns by Selecting the Best Products to List on Amazon
An important thing to consider is whether or not customers are likely to return an item, as any product sold on Amazon will have the opportunity for customers to make a return and/or leave a negative review, which can hurt a seller’s profile if items are returned regularly. This will hurt a seller’s ability to sell other products online.
Besides damaging a brand/Amazon seller profile, this can also cause a financial hit as it’s not always possible to resell something that has been returned by a customer. Shipping costs can add up quickly, so adding in some returns can make profits start to bleed.
Minimize the likelihood of a product being returned by:
- Providing accurate pictures and descriptions in the listing.
- Analyze existing reviews and customer feedback before adding an item to an Amazon listing.
- Ensure products are packed in a way that protects them from rigors of shipping.
To Make Money Selling Products on Amazon, Product Research is Key
Following this advice will increase chances of earning a profit. Nothing is worse than putting in hundreds of hours to market a product on Amazon, only to find that customers don’t want it or that a major brand is cutting a seller out. Before starting to sell on Amazon, make sure to understand Amazon’s fees.