Selling on Amazon and Starting an Amazon Business Successfully

If you are thinking about selling on Amazon, you are not alone. Third-party retailing is a veteran online occupation and for good reason – it has produced many millionaires.


With Amazon marketplace, sellers have access to a powerful and direct search engine and an established audience who, when they access the site, are usually planning to buy something.

Multiple surveys indicate that more people start their product searches on Amazon than Google. Forty-three percent of all online retail sales in the US went through Amazon in 2016 and that percentage is expected to exceed 50% by 2021. In the U.S. alone, approximately 25 million people visit daily.

Amazon’s international marketplaces receive millions more. This is good for sellers, because once they have established an Amazon business in their own countries, taking advantage of global opportunities is a natural step and won’t take much more effort. Sellers outside the U.S. will have far fewer competitors. Plus, international sales can provide protection from economic downturns at home and lets sellers benefit from a weak currency exchange in their home countries.


Becoming a new seller on Amazon is not difficult. It takes a few minutes to register and only a few more to get your product listings to go live. But you should prepare for those few minutes and keep a close eye on the default settings once you get started.

First, get to know Amazon’s rules and prepare to follow them exactly as they’re stated. They are there to provide customers with consistent, high quality experiences. You can find them in the Help Section.

Second, know what you plan to sell and familiarize yourself with Amazon’s listing format. For some sellers, who are broadening their customer base by listing their own products, this may be relatively easy.

For others, this step may require a bit of research. Simply searching for best-selling products on Amazon may not cut it. You should also check to see if the items you are going with are already being sold on Amazon and at what prices.

Finally, have these items ready when you register — Business name, address, contact #, email, credit card (internationally chargeable), tax ID, state tax ID, and passport. Also, know where you plan to have return orders sent and who will handle buyer inquiries.


When starting an Amazon business, one should take into account that, like most marketplaces, Amazon charges substantial fees. These fees vary according to the type of account and the items sold. The Individual Selling Plan comes with no monthly charge but with a $0.99 per item sold charge.

The Professional Selling Plan has a monthly charge of $39.99 and no charge per item sold. The best choice depends on your sales. Then there are the sale-related fees. Referral fees are based on the items category but range from 6% to 20% of the sale.

A variable closing fee of $1.80 applies to items in the Media category. (Keep in mind these fees can change.) Added to these costs will be fees associated with the acquisition of your products, shipping, returns, taxes and any other business-related expenses which will vary depending on its size.

This is why sellers on Amazon can never lose sight of the bottom line or they will find themselves losing money. They have to compete very hard on price and manage their margins with precision.


Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) is an option for sellers that means that rather than packing their products to ship to individual buyers, sellers instead ship their products in bulk to an Amazon warehouse and Amazon packs and ships them for a fee.

Fulfillment by Amazon is a good idea for sellers because Amazon Prime members (over 50 million) will usually choose those items when buying because they want free two-day shipping. And even if a non-prime customer is buying, when he or she clicks the buy box, Amazon will usually favor FBA sellers for the sale. Amazon charges about $0.20 to sticker an FBA sellers’ items at the warehouse, unless the seller allows their products to be co-mingled with those of other sellers.

The danger with co-mingling is that if a buyer purchases from you and Amazon sends them a product from another seller which turns out to be subpar, you will most likely be blamed for it. When you register for FBA you must tell Amazon not to co-mingle right then and there. It is also a good idea to tell them that you want to repackage unsellable returns due to package damage during return shipment so that the item itself is not perceived as damaged or used.

Fulfillment by Amazon also enables Amazon sellers to go global more easily because Amazon, along with its resource partners, will clear hurdles such as international shipping, customs, taxes and localization more quickly.


One way for sellers on Amazon marketplaces to watch their bottom line is to choose a payment service provider that gives them a quick, simple and low-cost way to receive funds.

With Payoneer, sellers can receive payments to one consolidated account and access those funds from anywhere in the world. They can also view upcoming payments and payment history for their Amazon transactions. They can reach customers in the US, UK, EU, Japan, Canada, Australia and Mexico with accounts in multiple currencies and pay suppliers and contractors for free. They can provide vendors with a way to debit their account on a regular basis. And they can enjoy multilingual customer care 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

In order to make money on Amazon, sellers must also reinvest funds immediately. Payoneer allows sellers to request and transfer money very quickly for reinvestment.


With hundreds of millions of customers and hundreds of billions in sales annually, building a business online with Amazon can be well worth the effort.

That is, if you take the time to get it right and keep your product catalogue relevant. Using Amazon as a sales channel for your existing brand, no matter how successful, is an opportunity you should not pass up. Because your competitors won’t.

If you are starting an Amazon business or already selling products on Amazon you should consider using a payment provider that will help you with your bottom line – for receiving payments from Amazon check out Payoneer’s payment solutions for online sellers.