Learn

The Beginner's Guide
to Selling on Amazon

Points to keep in mind before you start selling
Various Amazon boxes stacked together

Getting Started

Welcome to Selling on Amazon

It’s no secret: Amazon prioritizes its customers. And our customers want a trusted destination where they can purchase a wide variety of goods. This is what makes sellers like you so important. We’re always looking for ways to add value for our customers and be Earth’s most customer-centric company. As an Amazon seller, you take part in offering those customers better selection, and a top-notch customer experience.

300 million active customers in more than 180 countries

13.26 million unique visitors (on desktop) ¹, 43.06 million unique visitors (on mobile) ² per month in Japan

Icon: Calendar with Prime mark on it

175 million+ items purchased during Prime Day 2019

¹ March 2019 Nielsen Digital Content Measurement: Brand Level - Home and Workplace Access
² March 2019 Ranking by Nielsen Mobile NetView Brand

The Amazon edge

When you start selling on Amazon, you become part of a retail destination that’s home to sellers of all kinds. There are a variety of sellers, ranging from Fortune 500 organizations to artisan vendors who make handcrafted goods. They all sell here for a reason: to reach the hundreds of millions of customers who visit Amazon to shop.
  • Third-party sales on Amazon are growing at 52% a year (compared to 25% for first-party sales by Amazon)

FAQ:

Is Amazon right for your business?

The short answer is: yes. The largest household brands sell on Amazon. So do emerging brands that will pop on your radar soon. Small and medium-sized businesses thrive here, and they account for more than half the units sold in our stores worldwide. Whatever your business is—and whatever size it is—we’re excited for you to grow with us. Find your fit and start selling today.

Don't have a Seller Account yet?

¥4,900 a month (excluding tax) + selling fees

Before you start selling

How do I enroll?

With two selling plans (they’re called Individual and Professional, but you can think of them as standard and premium), Amazon offers you the flexibility to sell one item or sell thousands. Before you begin registration, decide which plan is a better fit for your business.

The Individual plan costs ¥100 per sale, while sellers using the Professional plan pay ¥4,900 per month, no matter how many items they sell. If you sell more than 50 items a month, the Professional option makes a lot of sense. Don't worry if your original forecast differs from the actual number of sales. You can change plans at any time.

PLANS

Individual

Professional

Price

¥

100

/ Product
+ Selling fees

¥

4,900

/ month
+ Selling fees
This plan might be right for you if...
  • You plan to sell fewer than 49 items a month
  • You don’t need advanced selling tools or add-on programs
  • You’re still deciding what to sell
  • You plan to sell more than 50 items a month
  • You want to use advanced selling tools, like APIs and reports
  • You’d like to apply for add-on programs like Amazon Business
  • You’re an established ecommerce seller
Don't worry about making the wrong choice - you can change plans at any time. Also keep in mind that, in both cases, additional selling fees apply.

Did you know?

Tools for brand owners

If you own a brand, Amazon offers tools to help you build, grow, and protect it. Enrolling in Brand Registry can help you personalize your brand and product pages, protect your trademarks and intellectual property, and improve the brand experience for customers—along with unlocking.
You’ll also get to unlock additional advertising options and recommendations on improving traffic and conversion.

What you’ll need to get started

In order to complete your registration, make sure you have access to:
  • Bank account number and bank code
  • Chargeable credit card
  • Government-issued ID
  • Your tax ID info
  • Phone number

How Much Does it Cost to Sell on Amazon?

There are a few different types of selling fees you might pay, depending on your selling plan and the types of products you sell.
Subscription fees
There are a few different types of selling fees you might pay, depending on your selling plan and the types of products you sell.
  • On the Professional selling plan there’s a flat fee of ¥4,900 per month and no per-item fee.
  • With the Individual plan, you’ll pay ¥100 every time you sell an item.
Selling fees
Referral fees are charged for each item sold. These fees are charged per item sold, and they include referral fees (which are a percentage of the selling price and vary depending on the product’s category), and variable closing fees (which apply only to media categories).
Fulfillment costs
When you fulfill orders yourself, Amazon shipping rates apply. We charge these shipping rates based on the product category and shipping service selected by the buyer.
FBA fees
For products that Amazon fulfills for you (known as Fulfillment by Amazon, or FBA), there are fees for order fulfillment, storage, and optional services.
To review the fees that may be associated with your account, visit the Selling on Amazon Fee Schedule.

Get to know
Seller Central

What is Seller Central?

Once you register as an Amazon seller, you’ll have access to your Seller Central account. Think of Seller Central as your go-to resource for selling on Amazon. It’s a portal to your Amazon business and a one-stop shop for managing your selling account,
adding product information, making inventory updates, managing payments, and finding helpful content to help you navigate your Amazon business. It’s also where you list all your products.
Below are a just few of the things you can do from Seller Central.
  • Keep track of your inventory and update your listings from the Inventory tab
  • Download custom business reports and bookmark templates you use often
  • Use customer metrics tools to monitor your seller performance
  • Contact Selling Partner Support and open help tickets using the Case Log
  • Keep track of your daily sales for all the products you sell on Amazon
Amazon Seller Central home screen interface
Woman in black blazer looking at account on Amazon seller app

The Amazon Seller app

Did you know you can track sales on Amazon wherever you go? The Amazon Seller app lets you analyze your sales, fulfill orders, find products to sell, manage offers and inventory, respond to customer questions, capture and edit professional-quality product photos, and create listings—right from your mobile device. Never be more than a swipe away from your Amazon business. Download it for iPhone or Android to get started.
QR code to download the Amazon Seller app to your cellphone
Click here to download the Amazon Seller app on the Apple App Store
Click here to download the Amazon Seller app on Google Play

Don't have a Seller Account yet?

¥4,900 a month (excluding tax) + selling fees

Listing products

Listing your first product

To sell a product on Amazon, you must first create a product listing. If somebody else is already selling the same product on Amazon, match the existing listing. If you are the first or only seller, create a new listing.

The specific way sellers upload and list their products varies depending on their selling plan. To put it simply: Sellers using a Professional seller account have the option of listing their products in large batches using bulk uploading or inventory management with third-party systems, while Individual sellers list products one at a time.
Illustration of a woman using a laptop

What you need to start listing products

In most cases, products must have a Global Trade Item Number (GTIN), such as a UPC, an ISBN, or an EAN. Amazon uses these product IDs to identify the exact item you’re selling. If you match a listing, you won’t need to provide a product ID since it already exists. If you are listing your first product on Amazon, you can purchase a UPC code or request an exemption.
In addition to a product ID, here’s some of the important information that goes into each product listing:
  • SKU
  • Product title
  • Product description and bullet points
  • Product images
  • Search terms and relevant keywords

FAQ:

What are restricted product categories?

It’s important that customers are able to shop with confidence on Amazon, which is why some product categories (like certain grocery or automotive products) are known as “restricted product categories.” Amazon might require performance checks, additional fees, and other qualifications in order for you to sell certain brands or list items within restricted categories. You’ll be able to request approval from within Seller Central.

Successful listing = successful launch

Follow best practices for adding listings. This can have a big impact on their success. Make it easy for shoppers to find your offers by adding descriptive titles, clear images, and concise feature bullets to your items.

Avoid these things that could negatively impact your launch:

Variation issues

Products that vary only by color, scent, or size might be a good candidate for listing as variations. Ask yourself if the customer would expect to find the products together on the same page. If not, list them separately.

Image compliance

Your images must be at least 500 x 500 pixels (increase the size to 1,000 x 1,000 for high-quality listings) and set against a plain white background. The product should fill at least 80% of the image area.

Product ID

Make sure you’re meeting the requirements for product UPCs and GTINs (Global Trade Item Number). Consistency in these codes helps promote confidence in the range of products shown in the Amazon catalog.

Don't have a Seller Account yet?

¥4,900 a month (excluding tax) + selling fees

Product details

Amazon Seller Central product detail page showing where descriptions go

Getting Started

A product detail page is where customers view a product sold on Amazon. If you’ve shopped on Amazon, you’ll probably recognize the product detail page. It’s where customers can find all the relevant information about a particular item.

When multiple sellers offer the same product, Amazon combines data from all the offers into one product detail page (so we can present customers with the best experience). You can propose product information on a product detail page, along with other sellers and manufacturers, and request detail page reviews if you think the information is not correct.

As you’re building your product detail pages, try to think about what will best help customers find your products, discover answers to their questions, and make a purchasing decision. Aim for the ultimate customer experience by making your listings concise, accurate, and easy to understand.
1.
Title
200 characters max, capitalize the first letter of every word
2.
Product images
500 x 500 or 1,000 x 1,000 pixels to increase listing quality
3.
Product Variations
Such as different colors, scents, or sizes
4.
Bullet points
Short, descriptive sentences highlighting the key features and differentiating characteristics of the products
5.
Featured offer ("Buy Box")
The featured offer on a detail page. Customers can add to their cart or “Buy Now.” If you’re one of multiple sellers advertising the same product, research strategies for “winning” the Featured Offer to improve your overall sales
6.
Other offers
The same product sold by multiple sellers offering a different price, shipping options, etc.
7.
Product description
Keywords improve the chances that people will find your listing

Delivering products

Selecting the right fulfillment option

Amazon sellers have two options for getting shoppers their stuff: You can do it yourself, maintaining your own inventory and shipping products to customers (Fulfillment By Seller), or have Amazon take responsibility for packaging, labeling, and shipping products through Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA). Each method has its own set of benefits—you just have to decide which one is right for your business.
Clip art of Amazon Prime truck delivering items to suburban home

If you’re fulfilling your own orders

Fulfillment By Seller just means you store and ship products directly to customers yourself. Amazon charges shipping rates based on the product category and shipping service selected by the customer, then passes the amount on to you in the form of a shipping credit.

Set shipping rates apply to all products sold with an Individual plan, so it’s important to determine if you can still price items profitably.
Illustration of a woman looking at massive computer display with graphs and world map

Benefits of Fulfillment by Amazon

Around the world, Amazon has more than 175 fulfillment centers which contain more than 150 million square feet of storage space. With FBA, you get to store your stuff on those shelves. You also get Amazon’s world-class customer service and returns, along with other advantages (like automatic Prime eligibility and Free Super Saver Shipping) that help you scale your business—fast.
Illustrated woman standing in front of boxes on a conveyor belt in an Amazon fulfillment center

Did you know?

There are two types of FBA fees

There are two types of FBA fees: fulfillment fees (which are charged per unit sold and include picking and packing your orders, shipping and handling, customer service, and product returns), and inventory storage fees (which are charged monthly, and are based on the volume of inventory being held in an Amazon fulfillment center).

How Fulfillment by Amazon works

1

Ship your inventory to Amazon. It will be scanned and made available for sale.

2

With each order, Amazon packages and ships the product directly to the customer.

3

Amazon collects payment from the customer and pays you available funds every two weeks.

4

Amazon’s customer service team handles questions, returns, and refunds.

Don't have a Seller Account yet?

¥4,900 a month (excluding tax) + selling fees

After the sale

Manage your business

Your first sale is a big milestone—but it’s just the beginning of your growth opportunities selling on Amazon. Once your store is up and running, there are a few important things to keep in mind.

Performance metrics (and why they matter)

Amazon sellers operate at a high standard so we can provide a seamless, delightful shopping experience. We call it being customer-obsessed, and as an Amazon seller it means keeping an eye on these key metrics:
  • Order defect rate (a measure of a seller’s customer service standards): < 1%
  • Pre-fulfillment cancel rate (initiated by the seller before shipment): < 2.5%
  • Late shipment rate (orders that ship after the expected date): < 4%
You can keep tabs on your performance and make sure you’re meeting your targets in Seller Central.
Graph showing the health of an Amazon seller account

Customer Reviews

Customer product reviews are an integral part of the shopping experience on Amazon, and they benefit both customers and sellers. Make sure you’re familiar with the right way and wrong way to get more product reviews and avoid policy violations.
A 4.5-star product review from an Amazon customer

Amazon jargon:

Seller University

Seller University is an online resource from Amazon. It has videos featuring step-by-step guides, tutorials, and training to help entrepreneurs start (and grow) their Amazon business.

Don't have a Seller Account yet?

¥4,900 a month (excluding tax) + selling fees

Growth opportunities

This is only the beginning

The moment you’re selling on Amazon is the moment you can start growing your Amazon business. Once you’ve launched your business, Amazon has tools in place to help you take your business to the next level (or the next couple of levels).

Advertising

Amazon’s advertising solutions create new ways for you to reach and engage shoppers, regardless of whether they’re just starting to compare products, or ready to make a purchase.
Ads show up right where customers will see them (like the first page of search results or product detail pages).

Amazon offers three advertising solutions, and all of them are accessible through Seller Central.
1. Sponsored Products
Sponsored Products are ads for individual product listings on Amazon, so they help drive product visibility (and product sales). They appear on search results pages and product detail pages.
2. Sponsored Brands
Sponsored Brands showcase your brand and product portfolio. They’re search-result ads that feature your brand logo, a custom headline, and up to three of your products.
3. Amazon Stores
Stores are custom multipage shopping destinations for individual brands. Share your brand story and product offerings. (And you don’t need any website experience to use them.)

Promotions and coupons

Customers want to save, and promotions are an incentive to make a purchase now. There are three types of promotions: money off, free shipping, and buy one get one free. You can also offer percentage or money-off discounts with digital coupons.

Global expansion

Selling globally is a huge milestone for any business. It means hundreds of millions of new customers and the potential for a big boost in sales. Global expansion has a lot of moving parts, but with Amazon Global Selling, you get to use Amazon’s global infrastructure to get your products in front of a worldwide audience.

When it’s time to take your business to the next level, use Amazon Global Selling to list and sell your products on any of our online stores in North America, Europe, and Asia.
Illustration of a world map

What makes a great seller?

A checklist for growth

Opportunities for growth are all around you—but here are a few things to try in your first 90 days as an Amazon seller.
Keep an eye on your account health in Seller Central
Use Fulfillment by Amazon or Seller Fulfilled Prime
Advertise your listings or offer deals and coupons
Enroll in Brand Registry and create enhanced brand content
Expand your selection by listing more products
Use the Automate Pricing Tool in Seller Central

Your first 90 days

The first three months after you launch your Amazon business are an important time for establishing practices that will boost your performance from there on out.

Start selling today

Put your products in front of the millions of customers that search Amazon every day.
¥4,900 a month (excluding tax) + selling fees
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