There are 6 ways to position your product so that people will choose you over the other guy:
1. Better: physical, product-based improvements.
2. Before: enter the market earlier than everyone else. If you paid attention to RPR in Step 1, you should be OK.
3. Brute: get more sales and reviews than them and become the authority. Only do this if you have money to spend.
4. Bundle: combine the product with another, complimentary product.
5. Brand: improve your listing and price high to be seen as de facto “best”.
6. Bulk: buy and sell the product in bulk (when everyone else is selling singles).
NOTE: as of October 3rd, 2016 Amazon does not allow physical products to be sold in exchange for reviews: https://www.amazon.com/p/feature/abpto3jt7fhb5oc
More content about this is coming up, but know that this practice is no longer allowed.
However, that leaves sellers in a funny place: to sell on Amazon, you still need (1) sales (to increase momentum) and (2) reviews (to increase your conversion rate, build trust, and run pay-per-click advertising). So, HonestFew has pivoted to become a sales platform, instead of a review platform. As usual, we give sellers access to 50,000+ Amazon shoppers. We promote your item for sale at a discount, as if you got a press feature or were running a Black Friday sale. The shoppers buy your product, which increases your sales. So, that’s taken care of. As for reviews, we give you the ability to follow up with your HonestFew customers, providing excellent customer service and asking for an honest review of the product if you’d like to. But unlike before, there is no implied contract of “discount for review”. Shoppers are allowed, but not required, to leave reviews on the product. We made a statement on the tail of Amazon’s press release, which is here: https://honestfew.com/amazon-update-on-customer-reviews/
What the perfect product to private label for Amazon FBA?
The product that hits page 1, sells, dominates, and makes you feel like…
The perfect product has 2 things:
(1) Great physical specs and (2) Great Amazon market conditions.
So today, we’re going to look at what specs and market conditions you should look for, then I’ll give you some actionable tips to find product ideas.
(1) Great physical specs
A few pounds, max. The lighter, the less money you lose in shipping and duty fees.
> Fits in your pocket.
Or at the very least, a shoebox. This avoids excessive shipping and Amazon storage fees down the line.
> Profitable to sell.
Buy low, sell high. Aim for a retail price of $25 to $100. This leaves room for profit, but isn’t expensive enough for buyers to have to consult anyone before purchasing. As for margins, aim to make at least $15 in profit on a $30 product. Remember to account for product cost, shipping fees, duty fees, Amazon fees, and currency exchange rates (if applicable). For example, the Canadian dollar is weak right now. Go Raptors.
> Not patented.
Check out Google Patents to get a sense of whether your item has been patented, or has other IP issues. Of course, Google Patents isn’t an exhaustive patent search nor is this isn’t legal advice; consult a licensed attorney.
> Brandable and customizable.
You can improve the physical form without great expense. For example, you should be able to add a brand logo to it (hence the term “private label”), a helpful modification, a handle, a protective case, a foam coating. Fixed form factors like diecast metals and plastic made from molds leave less room for differentiation, which is bad.
> Not at Wal-Mart.
Ideally, buyers can’t get this item in big box stores and are forced to buy online — which means Amazon, which means you.
> No instructions needed.
The customer should know what to do straight out of the box. Go ahead: include your free PDF guide. But ultimately, your product should be drop-dead simple.
> Can be re-ordered.
Better yet: it’s something that can be used, enjoyed, and then re-ordered. After all, the second sale is easier to make than the first.
> Simple tech.
Consider avoiding charging and batteries, as more can go wrong. Tech that doesn’t work will hurt reviews down the line.
> Passes a stress test.
Can it survive a drop from a building? Yes. Is it safe in the hands of a toddler? Yes. So it won’t break during shipping, resulting in better reviews and fewer customer service issues.
> Single SKU.
Imagine you start out with 3 sizes and 3 colors: small red, medium red, big red. Small blue, medium blue, big blue. Small yellow, medium yellow, big yellow. That’s effectively 9 products to keep stocked at all times. Start with medium red and if it does well, roll cash into variations.
Let’s look at a perfect example of good physical specs: silicone wedding rings.
Fits in your pocket.
No IP issues.
Wal-Mart does have them, but only 5 listings right now.
Intuitive to use.
Won’t break in shipping and could survive being dropped from the CN Tower. Go Raptors.
Sounds great! Why don’t we all private label silicone wedding rings?
And now the market looks like this:
Still potentially profitable, but competitive.
Which brings us to the other half of the equation: market conditions.
A good product without the right market conditions won’t sell. So what does a perfect Amazon market look like?
(2) Great Amazon market conditions
> No household names.
If there’s a strong brand that people associate with the product keyword, stay out. Duracell. Kleenex. Sharpie. This isn’t always the case, though. Sometimes a dinosaur market needs an asteroid or two.
> The product has multiple keywords.
The product is searched for, found, and purchased through various keywords. Synonyms, if you will. You’ll benefit from this when it comes time to optimize your listing for search and run Amazon paid ads.
Check Google Trends for the product ideas you’re considering. Is the trend going up or down? If they’re ascending because of consumer preferences or current events and the trend will continue, that’s good. If it’s in decline, stay away.
> You can build a brand around it.
The product you pick must be the start of a cohesive product line. Don’t make it a one-off, then sell something in a different category. Make it part of a larger vision because you can cross-sell customers who buy initial product A with similar product B.
> Presentation can be improved.
You can improve the branding, presentation, packaging, and information of competitors. You’ll know if this is the case because page 1 for the keyword will look… well, ugly. Unoptimized. Short titles, poor quality photos, priced too high, priced too low.
> You’re an insider.
If you’re a member of the target demographic for the product, you’ll know what the market needs, and that’s an advantage over Jim in marketing who sells yoga mats but has never done downward dog pose and doesn’t know what kale tastes like. Study your bank statements for the last 6 months. What hobby or niche have you spent a disproportionate amount of money on? Gaming? Superfoods? Fashion? Whatever it is, see if you can find a product that fits the physical specs we talked about.
> Thriving FBA sellers.
You want to know that someone’s succeeded in the niche as a proof of concept. Not too successful, but somewhat. You can be the Apple to their Samsung. Samsung does it first, Apple does it better. Add 999 units of the product to your cart every day for a week, so Amazon gives you the inventory count. Use the Chrome extension Keepa to track BSRs of various Amazon products over time. In Keepa, you’re looking for a history of low BSRs. The lower the bar is (i.e. the closer to BSR #1), the better the product’s performed over time.
> High RPR.
“Revenue per review.” The idea is this: high revenue is ok, but high revenue and low review count is better. To calculate RPR:
(1) Find the market leader’s monthly revenue (e.g. the top seller makes $24,000).
(2) Divide their revenue by the number of reviews they have (e.g. $24,000/45 reviews).
(3) The RPR (revenue per review) is $533. That’s a great RPR. What does it mean? If you compete with a similarly optimized listing, for every review you get you “earn” $533 if you eventually overtake that competitor.
Not a perfect metric, but produces clear ‘YES/NO’ decisions when looking for private label ideas.
Just know: low RPR is bad, high RPR is good.
And now, you know what to look for: the ideal specs and the perfect market conditions. And now, tips on finding new product ideas.
Finding new ideas
– go to a Wal-Mart or Target and browse the shelves. Now that you know what to look for, you can find physical objects that fit that description.
– look outside of the Western world, at local Chinese supermarkets. Sometimes they’re ahead of the curve. And if there’s no Chinese supermarket nearby… yes there is because Aliexpress.
– don’t look in Amazon’s top 100. Everyone looks there. Find niche products that appeal to a specific type of person. It helps if you are such a person. Anyone can think to sell a soccer ball but what about darts? Boomerangs? Rock climbing stuff? Boating accessories?
– Keep clicking. Maybe start in the top 100, but click away to product after product. Go layers deep, and find the untapped markets.
– add modifiers to searches. For example, instead of just “backpack”, search: “industrial backpack”, “commercial backpack”, “bulk backpack”, “kids backpack”, “novelty backpack”, “special backpack”, “backpack accessories”, “backpack alternative”, “better backpack”, etc.
– use auto-completion. Start typing a product name or category, and see what Amazon fills in for you.
And there you go! The keys to finding the perfect product to private label for Amazon FBA.
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Source a product, ship to Amazon, get reviews, and sell to Amazon’s millions of loyal customers… all while Amazon handles shipping and customer service for you.
It’s the biggest B2C online selling opportunity in human history.
But with the spotlight on the US, it’s easy to overlook one thing: Amazon.com is just 1 of 11 different Amazon markets.
There’s Amazon Canada, Mexico, UK, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, China, Japan, and India. Millions of customers waiting to buy what you sell — all you need to do is be there.
But integration isn’t easy.
Each country has its own Amazon set-up process and laws on importing and taxes. So, one does not simply start selling on all 11 platforms at once.
So, what first?
Let me explain why Amazon UK should be your lead domino. Grab your passport. We’re going across the pond.
What’s in it for you?
First off, how many potential customers are you getting?
US | Population (2013): 316 million UK | Population (2013): 64 million
To be fair to the UK, look at the relative land masses.
But my question to whoever made this map is why put the UK there? This map makes it look like the UK’s ready to vote Trump. Anyway…
How much money do you stand to make?
US | Amazon.com revenue (2015): $107.01 billion UK | Amazon.co.uk revenue (2015): $9.03 billion
This means that the UK is 8.4% the size of the United States in Amazon revenues.
So naturally, many sellers dismiss it: “8.4% as big? That means I’ll get 8.4% of the sales that I do in the US.”
And… that’s where it ends.
Is the UK worth selling to?
Because for better or for worse, there’s been a lot of hype about selling on Amazon’s US market.
This creates a cycle that positions American FBA as the best and only Amazon opportunity. More success stories and marketing, more sellers enter, more success stories, more sellers. And it’s true — you can make a lot of money on Amazon.com. Remember: in terms of the number of customers within reach, this is the greatest sales opportunity in history.
But this leaves Amazon UK, a $9 billion dollar Amazon market, largely neglected by sellers since everyone thinks: smaller market; not interested.
Zig when they zag.
All the savvy sellers (including international brands from Europe and Asia) focus their efforts on Amazon.com, a large affluent market. Good move.
So in the UK, there are fewer savvy sellers than in the US and less international business focus, yet there are millions of similarly affluent customers who need your product.
See the opportunity?
In the UK there’s less competition but the same type of online shopper.
A study found that US shoppers spend, on average, £1,120/year. That’s, uh, let me see… call it $1485 USD/year.
The UK shopper spends, on average, £1,174/year or $1556 USD, which is actually more than the US shopper.
And reports, like this one from Business Insider, indicate that Brexit hasn’t killed British spending.
In fact everyone from the BBC to the Guardian to Reuters to the credit card companies themselves say sales areup.
So here’s what we know so far about the UK.
(1) fewer savvy sellers, both local and international, to compete with
(2) yet, the same customer profile: an affluent English-speaker who actually spends more than their American counterpart
(3) and, UK retail sales are up despite Brexit.
Now, we’re going to look at some Amazon niches in a second, but as if this wasn’t enough, your product can use the same ASIN, and be managed from the same Seller Central account.
And, by signing up for Amazon UK, Amazon lets you sell to all 5 of Amazon’s European markets: Amazon.co.uk, Amazon.de, Amazon.fr, Amazon.it and Amazon.es, which gives you millions of additional buyers on top of UK traffic.
Ranking on page 1 and making sales on Amazon UK requires less up front investment in terms of initial sales and reviews.
Let’s look at some popular private label niches and look at what it takes to get onto page 1, first on Amazon.com and then on Amazon.co.uk.
Keyword: DOG TREAT
On the left, we see a market where there’s tons of cash, but getting thousands of sales and reviews is the norm.
On the right, the UK. With no one over 1000 reviews.
And remember to multiply the UK revenue numbers by 1.30 to convert to US dollars.
And I’m using RPR, a metric that HonestFew uses, to quickly assess how potentially profitable the niche is. It’s the monthly revenue divided by the number of reviews on the listing, effectively telling you how much getting each review is “worth.” Not exact, but an excellent way to sum up an Amazon listing in 1 number.
Keyword: DOG TREAT
US: Top seller makes $23,547 USD with 1658 reviews. RPR = $14
UK: Top seller makes $14,932 USD with 435 reviews. RPR = $34
Keyword: ROSEHIP OIL
Supplements will be competitive wherever you go, but it’s much less so in the UK, with each review being “worth” more to the bottom line.
US: Top seller makes $60k with 4500 reviews. RPR =$13
UK: Top seller makes $8.3k with 460 reviews. RPR = $18
Keyword: PROTEIN POWDER
US: Top seller makes $300k with 15,000 reviews. RPR =$20
UK: Top seller makes $78.6k with 3095 reviews. RPR = $25
Keyword: YOGA PANTS
US: Top seller makes $4100 with 509 reviews. RPR =$8
UK: Top seller makes $1600 with 73 reviews. RPR = $22
You can pick pretty much any niche, and the story’s the same: you need fewer reviews to get to the top.
And HonestFew can help you get to the first page, both in the US and in the UK markets, by selling your product to our community of certified product reviewers. We’ve done this for our clients again and again, so why not you?
Get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org or toll-free at 1–855–707–2395 to rank your products on Amazon.co.uk now, rather than later. The timing’s perfect. Expansion is an excellent investment in yourself and your business, and we’re here to help.
How do I sign up?
Now, explaining the technical aspects of setting up a UK account is something for a different time. But you know that HonestFew always delivers.
For a breakdown on signing up for Amazon UK, I dug up the 2 best guides:
First, a LinkedIn article from Kiri Masters, who’s an excellent writer and aQuora rival of mine:
And second, this article from Tom (just Tom, out of politeness), which talks about being a US seller expanding to Amazon.co.uk. I’ll link to both of these guides in the video description.
So here’s the strategic plan for the UK:
Amazon.com is profitable, and has a lot of attention. While everyone’s focusing on that, now’s the time to expand to the UK, taking advantage of less competition and increased consumer spending. Reviews that you get in the British market are automatically worth more in terms of long-term ranking. Consolidate your lead now, and opt into all of Amazon’s European markets.
Maybe you’re launching a product. Or, you have one and know it could do better.
“If only I could get to page 1 I’d make sales and my problems would be solved!”
But is that true?
Can simple keyword ranking solve your problems?
The data says… yes.
One Click Retail, an analysis firm with clients like Unilever, P&G, and Nestle, found this Amazon data…
Page 1’s first 3 items get 64% of all clicks.
Page 1 in general gets 81% of all clicks.
And only 30% of shoppers look past the first page. Ever.
So if you appear on page 2 or lower, you’re losing 70% of all potential sales. Ouch.
It’s imperative to reach page 1.
HonestFew, my company, has successfully landed dozens of sellers onto page 1. Here’s what we do in 3 steps.
(1) Make something of quality.
Many people skip quality in favor marketing tactics, i.e. the acquisition of new customers. But quality should come first.
Because all of your To Do’s become easier or unnecessary as quality increases.
Quality is a force multiplier.
Quality causes more repeat business, better reviews, fewer customer service issues, fewer returns, and more word-of-mouth referrals.
Quality multiplies marketing ROI because the lifetime value of every customer increases.
Quality is so important to Airbnb co-founder Brian Chesky that he designed a step-by-step visual storyboard of what the perfect Airbnb experience looks like, hired a Pixar animator to draw each panel, and hung them in the office. The project was code-named “Snow White” after Walt Disney’s storyboard approach to his first feature-length film.
Share in the magic: identify each step in your buyer’s experience, then imagineer (it’s a Disney term) ways to make each step better.
The customer types a search query into Amazon, and their story begins.
Their experience with you can be better or worse depending on your listing content, photos, review count, the types of reviews you’ve received, your customer service email sequence, packaging, packaging inserts, return policy, the product itself, and post-sale service.
Plot it out and make changes accordingly.
Seriously, don’t neglect this. Increasing quality is simple advice. So simple, in fact, that people skip it.
Now that you’ve got quality, you need customers.
Your job in step 2 is to…
(2) Reach escape velocity.
Rockets need a certain velocity to escape the gravitational attraction of Earth. It’s the same thing with your Amazon listing.
When you create a new listing, it has 0 reviews and 0 sales. Gravity is pushing, pressing, bearing down.
No sales, no velocity.
And if you don’t do anything, it’s going to stay that way.
So how do you get velocity?
With enough sales, you can free yourself from Amazon’s gravitational pull and float on page 1. Ever noticed that products on page 1 tend to stay there?
It’s a cycle: the more sales you’re getting, the further up the page you go; the further up the page you go, the more sales you get. Therefore, fighting to get to page 1 is harder than staying there.
But it comes at a price.
Amazon won’t rank your product on page 1 unless you’re matching the sales levels of the others on the page. Makes sense, right?
But you can artificially match page 1 sales levels with an Amazon product promotion. In other words, find people to buy your product at a discount in exchange for reviews. This can be achieved by building your own audience, recruiting reviewers on Facebook, or by using a product launch service like HonestFew.
This gives Amazon’s ranking algorithm what it wants: sales and reviews.
But how many sales and reviews do you need? The numbers depend on your competition.
1. How many sales? Watch your competitors on page 1 for a while and figure out how many sales they do to achieve “escape velocity” on page 1. This will be your minimum effective dose of units sold for review. This can be done with a product research tool that estimates sales, or you can just add “999” of a competitor’s item to your cart every day, and see how many they have left over from day to day.
2.How many reviews?
In addition, you’ll want to match the review count average, so that shoppers will perceive your item as a viable option. If you shop on Amazon in addition to selling there, how often do you buy the option with the most reviews? Of course. Why wouldn’t you? No one wants to take a risk on the less-reviewed model. They want what’s popular.
(3) Maintain momentum.
Once you’ve got promotional sales and reviews, you need to keep the momentum going. If not, your ranking will drop and everything will be in vain.
So, how do you maintain your sales levels?
Drop your price.
As price decreases, the quantity demanded increases. Thanks, Econ 101.
You see, promotions temporarily improve your BSR. But if the promotional sales stop, then your ranking falls as well. To compensate for this, you can lower your price, increasing the quantity demanded by organic, everyday shoppers. This effectively replaces the sales you were getting in your promotion with organic ones.
Calculate your break-even price point, and charge just above that. That way, you aren’t bleeding cash with every unit.
– product cost
– shipping cost and duty fees
– Amazon pick and pack fees
– Amazon referral fees
– and conversion rates if you’re selling in a different currency
Use Amazon’s FBA Revenue Calculator to help you predict Amazon fees.
If the price drop isn’t working as you’d like or you want to supplement it with more sales, you can run Amazon pay-per-click (PPC) ads.
Don’t hold back with the ads. Target the top keywords in your category. It’s the raw amount of sales that matter at this stage; you can fine-tune your keyword selection later. Don’t worry if you’ve got an ACoS only a mother could love.
And once your organic sales are consistently high in comparison with your competition, you’ll secure your place on page 1. Keep going. The best way out is through.
After you’ve consistently matched and exceeded your competition’s daily sales for weeks on end, you should start to see permanent page 1 ranking.
From here, you can raise your price back to normal and start profiting.
There you have it: how to rank on page 1 and stay there.
Make something of quality, improving your customer experience “storyboard” panel by panel.
Sell units for review by building an audience, Facebook groups, or launch service. This increases visibility and social proof.
Drop your price and run Amazon PPC ads to generate organic sales, which will keep your ranking high. Do this until your daily sales levels are high enough to match or exceed the competition.
This article “How to rank on page 1 on Amazon” was written by Pat from HonestFew.
HonestFew has successfully landed dozens of sellers onto page 1 with the exact methods laid out here. If you need a partner in getting your initial sales and reviews, we can get your product in front of thousands of product reviewers. Visit honestfew.com or email email@example.com to get started.