Amazon reported INR 162 billion in revenue in the financial year 2021, surpassing sales of all other marketplaces and reinforcing its reputation as a reliable place to shop for anything and everything under the sun.
Furthermore, it is Amazon that made 2-day shipping the norm for online shoppers and launched its fulfilment service, i.e. FBA (fulfilment by Amazon), to bring forth the promise of 2-day shipping. While FBA has its benefits, like giving the opportunity to get the prime badge, it also has its fair share of drawbacks, such as its complicated pricing structure and expensive fees. As a result, not all ecommerce sellers wish to use FBA for fulfiling Amazon orders.
In this blog, you will learn about the benefits of selling on Amazon, how to start selling on Amazon, what FBA is and how you can sell on Amazon without FBA.
It would be wise to include Amazon in your ecommerce strategy because customers prefer to shop from Amazon as compared to other marketplaces. Moreover, 55% of customers start their search for products on Amazon and then move on to other marketplaces and websites. You can either sell only on Amazon or make it a part of their multichannel sales strategy.
Ecommerce sellers can take advantage of Amazon’s reputation of being a safe and reliable place to shop to increase their product visibility and ecommerce sales. Moreover, no significant investments are required to sell on Amazon; thus, anyone can list their products and start selling across India.
However, ecommerce sellers must remember that launching their business is just the first step; the most crucial one is fulfilling Amazon orders. Timely and seamless order fulfilment increases customer satisfaction and enhances an ecommerce brand’s reputation.
85% of Prime and 56% of non-prime customers visit Amazon at least once every week.
Ecommerce sellers can start selling on Amazon by registering and creating a seller account. The prerequisites for creating an account are:
Here are the steps for creating an Amazon seller account and launching your business:
Step 1- Go to Amazon seller central (dashboard used by sellers)
Step 2- Click on 'create a new account' or log in using your email address and password (if you already have an account)
Step 3- Enter your legal company name as mentioned in the GST
Step 4- Verify your mobile number through OTP
Step 5- Enter your store name, product and business address
Step 6- Enter your tax details such as GST number and PAN number
Step 7- Upload your digital signature
Well, your Amazon seller account has been created.
Now it’s time to create a listing of the products you sell. To do so:
Step 1- Go to the dashboard and select the 'Products to sell' option
Step 2- Enter the product name or barcode number and search on Amazon's catalog
Step 3- If you cannot find it in the catalog, choose 'adding a new product not sold on Amazon' to create a new listing
Step 4- Enter the product details, such as-
Step 5- Click on launch your business
Voila! You can start selling on Amazon.
FBA is the fulfilment service offered by Amazon. In this, ecommerce sellers send their inventory to Amazon's warehouses, and Amazon fulfils their orders. When an order is placed, Amazon picks, packs, ships, and delivers the product to the customer and also handles the returns (if any) and customer support.
Many ecommerce sellers believe FBA to be the best fulfilment option as it takes the burden off their shoulders to ensure 2-day shipping and meets Amazon's stringent packing guidelines. But, FBA has too many drawbacks, the biggest being that it cuts into the sellers' profits, thus making it an unideal choice for many. The disadvantages of FBA are:
There are three other methods for fulfilment on Amazon, each with its own advantages and disadvantages. Ecommerce sellers can choose the fulfilment option that's best for them based on cost savings and efficiency. The three methods are:
1. Easy ship
Easy ship is the delivery service offered by Amazon to its sellers. In Easy ship, ecommerce sellers take care of storage (in their own warehouses or by leasing one) and handle order processing for their Amazon orders. Then, an Amazon delivery executive picks and delivers the order to the customer. Moreover, Amazon handles returns and customer support for such orders.
On the bright side, Amazon handles the shipping of orders from your warehouse to the customer. While on the flip side, ecommerce sellers have to find a warehouse to store inventory which can be a tough task. You must also pick and pack orders according to Amazon's stringent guidelines; not following them can lead to penalties.
Ecommerce sellers handle order fulfilment in-house; they store inventory and pick, pack, ship and deliver orders. Self-ship is ideal for small businesses that are just starting out and do not have a large daily order volume. However, the many hidden costs associated with self-shipping significantly raise fulfilment costs.
FBM (Fulfilment By Merchant) is the third fulfilment option given by Amazon to its sellers. In FBM, sellers can either outsource the entire fulfilment process to a 3PL (picking, packing, shipping, delivery and returns) or let a 3PL pick and pack orders which are then shipped by a delivery partner chosen by the seller.
Outsourcing fulfilment to a 3PL has multiple benefits, including efficient fulfilment, adherence to SLAs (Service Level Agreements), quick shipping and more. However, choosing the right, tech-enabled 3PL is crucial. The process can sometimes be challenging, but you can pose certain questions to help you choose better.
In the second FBM scenario, ecommerce sellers can maintain complete control over the shipping of orders with the courier service of their choice. But at the same time, handling the last-mile delivery can increase the overall costs. Furthermore, you can lose control and visibility of your orders as not all courier partners provide real-time tracking information.
Eshopbox is a tech-enabled, all-in-one ecommerce logistics platform that provides fast and seamless order fulfilment. Eshopbox fulfils Amazon orders efficiently while adhering to SLAs and Amazon's stringent packaging guidelines. Here's why Eshopbox is an excellent choice for Amazon sellers:
Unlike Amazon's complicated and expensive pricing structure, Eshopbox has a simple one. It has two components- fulfilment fee and storage fee. The fulfilment fee is an all-inclusive fee for handling the fulfilment process, right from receiving inventory to shipping orders. The monthly storage fee is calculated based on item weight and dimensions.
Ecommerce sellers can store their inventory across the country with Eshopbox's network of fulfilment centres. Inventory allocation makes shipping cheaper and transit time lesser since the products are stored close to the customers. With Eshopbox, you can maintain greater control over your inventory, contrary to the scenario in FBA. Moreover, you can use the same inventory for multiple sales channels instead of committing it just to Amazon.
Fast shipping and delivery are crucial for Amazon, and all sellers must adhere to its stringent guidelines. Eshopbox ships orders at lightning-fast speed and ensures 2-day delivery by splitting inventory across multiple fulfilment centres.
The Amazon prime badge symbolises that a product will be shipped within two days and have free shipping for Prime users. The Amazon prime badge is given to ecommerce sellers who are able to satisfy requirements like shipping 99% of the orders on time, meeting 1 to 2-day delivery benchmarks, and providing nationwide delivery coverage for standard-size products.
Eshopbox helps Amazon sellers meet the above parameters by quickly shipping orders with high order accuracy and distributing inventory across multiple fulfilment centres to ensure fast shipping and delivery. Moreover, with Eshopbox, you can sell your inventory on multiple sales channels without losing your prime badge on your product listings.
The buy box allows customers to make a quick purchase without considering who they are buying from (Amazon or a third-party seller). It is given to sellers that fulfil Amazon’s performance-based requirements.
With Eshopbox, ecommerce sellers can increase their chances of getting the buy box for their product’s listing by efficiently fulfiling orders and maintaining good performance ratings.
You can become an Amazon premium seller by qualifying for the STEP program, which is a performance-based benefits program. Sellers are judged on seven criteria, namely-
Eshopbox can help sellers to qualify as Amazon premium sellers by meeting every SLA with an accuracy rate of 99.75% to avoid late dispatch and order cancellation. With Eshopbox’s accurate inventory relay, ecommerce sellers can prevent overselling and stock-outs. Moreover, you can distribute inventory to improve your regional in-stock and prime listing customer views.
By selling on Amazon, ecommerce sellers can have great opportunities in terms of ecommerce sales. Moreover, FBA is not the only or the best fulfilment option available to sellers. Brands can choose to fulfil orders on their own or outsource their fulfilment requirements to an expert 3PL provider like Eshopbox. By choosing Eshopbox, ecommerce sellers choose efficient inventory management and seamless order fulfilment with high order accuracy and multichannel capabilities.