Somehow another month has come and gone. Unfortunately, if you read the post from February you will already know that not much was accomplished in March. However, I'm back home and cracking down!
So, let's jump into the successes and setbacks of the last month.
Problem: FBA Shipment Pricing
First, the setback. After the delay from staying in Colorado, I found out some things about Amazon's shipping policy that made my last change of plan untenable. While Amazon's revenue calculator leads you to believe that you have total freedom in setting the price of your goods and shipping, it turns out that is only partially true. My first product is small and I was able to find very affordable shipping for it. However, Amazon requires you to set the price of your shipping to a minimum of $4.99 no matter how cheaply you can actually ship it. You can offset this by lowering your price, but a super cheap product isn't always the best way to attract customers. So, I dropped that plan.
Shipping out the goods
Which leads to, second, the (very small) success. I boxed up, labeled, and sent my first product to Amazon's warehouse...and I didn't mess up on any of their requirements! My products were successful scanned in and added to their inventory.
One big note to FBA sellers
But one more fly in the ointment. One of the main reasons I decided to pay the sky-high commissions of FBA is because your product receives free shipping for Amazon Prime customers. What I didn't know is that different sellers' products--even when they're identical--can get very different treatment. An FBA seller selling almost exactly the same product gets Prime Shipping, but mine was only given "Add-On Prime Shipping". What this means is that my product gets free Prime shipping if the person who is buying my product has $35 or more worth of Prime-eligible products in their shopping cart at the time of check out. Needless to say, that's a far worse deal.
So, what's next? I need to:
- do more research about how to move from "Add-On" free shipping to full Prime shipping
- try out my next plan: creating "gift boxes" of similar items in order to distinguish myself on Amazon
- figure out if FBA is still worth the cost with only "Add-On" shipping
- continue tweaking my spreadsheets for tracking finances, inventory, and sales data
- learn more about how to use marketing tools to better my products' visibility and increase sales volume
- learn how to utilize dropshipping companies in order to send products from the manufacturer directly to Amazon's warehouses
- Decrease the time gap between posts
- Increase specificity of problems and strategies
- Diversify the content provided
- Include ideas about how I'd overcome problems if they had occurred while traveling
That's about all I've got to share for the time being. I ordered 10 new products which are on their way to my house as we speak. Hopefully this will keep me busy and provide lots of new insight for my future posts.
Thanks for stopping by!