General Question

MooCows's avatar

Can someone explain how getting an item on Amazon works?

Asked by MooCows (3185points) April 19th, 2018

At our farm we have came up and gotten bottled a BBQ sauce and rub and it sells out at the farmer’s markets we go to. How do we get it on Amazon….Do we ship a certain amount to their warehouse and they ship it out or do they buy a certain amount from us..how does it work? Thanks for any input.

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5 Answers

funkdaddy's avatar

You can do it two (maybe three) ways.

The first is you commit to shipping it out, and give them a time frame you’ll ship within, then list it on Amazon. This means you handle sales when they come in and Amazon just takes a cut of the payment. You update your inventory and keep your seller account up to date.

The other would be to have it fulfilled by Amazon which means you just ship them product in large quantities, pay them a bit for the storage, packaging, inventory, and shipping (which they have rates defined for) and then they handle it from there and pay you when it sells. This is how you can qualify for Prime shipping and things like that. It can get a little expensive, but it takes a lot of the process of running a business off of you and puts that on Amazon. It’s pretty amazing how well they do.

Amazon does stock items that they purchase directly, just like grocery stores or Walmart, but mostly those are really big complicated deals with known manufacturers. You’d usually want to have quite a bit of sales before approaching them to stock your goods. That’s not to say they won’t, but the above options would give you a lot more control on things like pricing and how many you’ll deliver. Unless your brand is pretty far along, I’d pick the option above that fits your needs better.

I think Fulfilled by Amazon is one of the best deals I’ve ever seen, so that’s what I’d recommend, but check the others out and see what works for you.

si3tech's avatar

@MooCows Here is my experience buying an item on eBay. When the item arrived it was in a Amazon box with the message “FULFILLED BY AMAZON” label on the outside and 2 offers from Amazon on the inside of the box. The item I ordered was okay. My complaint is that IF I want to order from Amazon I will do it directly on their site. I falsely assumed I was purchasing my item from an independent seller, not indirectly from Amazon. NOT necessarily so. Look up Amazon practices with their employees. Many skip bathroom breaks in order to keep their jobs!

janbb's avatar

Have you looked at something like etsy which seems more suited for smaller purveyors of goods.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Since it is a food item your looking at a whole lot of hoops to jump through. That’s probably where you need to start.

Zaku's avatar

@si3tech So it sounds like you bought something from eBay and the seller then ordered it to be sent to you from Amazon from a 3rd party seller (perhaps himself). Fulfillment By Amazon means it’s a third-party item but Amazon handles storage and distribution and takes a cut.

Another gotcha of Fulfillment By Amazon, IIRC, is you may have more local sales tax responsibility – I think the place they store it, which may be several places as decided by them, ends up being a location of your business for tax purposes, or something – it was starting to get quite complicated having to track what sales tax needed to be paid.

Another potential gotcha of Fulfillment By Amazon is they store your inventory, but reserve the right to change their terms and rates and have various requirements and contract terms.

Working with Amazon even without FbA also means dealing with their customer feedback system, which sometimes can include customers claiming they didn’t get what you sent, and/or needing to keep your customer rating high enough for Amazon, which means you may want to indulge some customers whom you otherwise might not choose to.

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