What to Sell on Amazon FBA: Step by Step for Beginners

You’ve probably heard of the success stories, such as, “I make five figures a week selling on Amazon FBA.” Some people even make $100K a year using the platform. 

With a lucrative future in sight, you probably want to get in on such success too. But finding what products to sell on Amazon can be difficult when so many products exist on the market. 

This guide gives you everything you need to know about selling on Amazon FBA, including Amazon product ideas and finding what products to sell on FBA. 

What is Amazon FBA? 

Before we get ahead of ourselves, let’s first briefly discuss what Amazon FBA is. Knowing the system will better help you know how to use it for financial gain. 

The FBA stands for “Fulfillment by Amazon.” You sell a product using Amazon’s platform, and Amazon will make sure it gets to the customer. 

You have to buy and send products to Amazon first, though. Amazon has over 75 fulfillment centers in the USA, so finding one near you should be easy.  

Once a customer purchases your product on the Amazon online store, Amazon will pick out your product from their fulfillment center, pack it up, ship it to the customer, and provide the tracking number. Amazon will also handle any returns or refunds. 

Sounds great, right? You just have to pay amazon for storage and fulfillment fees, and they’ll handle everything else. These fees also include Amazon’s 24/7 customer service for sellers, so you can fix any issues quickly and get back to selling. 

Amazon FBA gives sellers a 30% – 50% increase in sales and accounts for every 1 in 3 shopping transactions. 

With over 112 million Amazon Prime users in the U.S. alone, you’re bound to find people willing to purchase your product. Your biggest concern, now, is finding the best one in such a saturated market. 

Finding the Best Product for Amazon

Amazon sells over 12.2 million products on its online store, but only a fraction of those ever become popular. And many of these products belong to big-name tech, electronic, apparel, outdoor gear, and other brands. 

Even with all these products and all these brands occupying Amazon’s seller space, there is still a product that has a high demand but low supply on Amazon. 

That’s why the key to finding the best product on Amazon is finding something that hasn’t been sold in high volumes yet. It’s true for any seller, really, but especially important on Amazon’s big playing field. 

This is where doing lots of research comes in. 

1. Do Manual Research from the Eyes of Your Niche 

If you’re interested in finding which products to sell on Amazon, put yourself in the shoes of an everyday customer who doesn’t know how Amazon FBA works. 

Finding your niche is important here. Are you trying to sell products to a broad market, such as to college freshmen? Or do you want to hit smaller, more lucrative sects such as older folks who just bought a second home? 

Use your niche to influence how you do your market research. Otherwise, you’ll be sifting through hundreds of products and not going anywhere. 

2. Use Chrome Extensions to Help You

No human has time to search through millions of products to find what doesn’t have much competition. But bots sure do. 

Chrome extensions like Jungle Scout have monitored over 500 million products on Amazon. Jungle Scout also writes up year customer trend reports, surveying thousands of customers, and analyzing how their buying behavior changes. 

In all, you’ll find your preferred method for finding what products to sell on Amazon. 

If you’re looking for data-backed Amazon product ideas in a short amount of time, using bots is the way to go. But if you’re the creative type, we recommend doing manual research from your niche’s perspective. 

You can gather your own trends and see patterns in the market that can be exploited. You can hopefully narrow down at least a few product categories that seem promising, but are they really what you should invest on? 

What Products to Sell on FBA

You’ve done your market research and decided on a few product categories that could be lucrative. But here are some times for perfecting what products to sell on FBA. 

1. Products That Cost Between $25 – $50

Remember that using the Amazon FBA service requires you to pay fees. You can’t sell products that are under $25 or below. Otherwise, you’ll wind up with a net loss from all the additional expenses. 

You’d have to sell a lot of these cheap products to break even. That’s a big gamble — especially for first-time entrepreneurs on the Amazon FBA platform. 

Instead, go for products that are a little more expensive, like between $25 – $50. You’ll have to buy a little less stock, but you’ll break even faster by selling fewer products.

Since you want products to sell between $25 – $50, look for wholesale products that cost between $10 – $30. That way, you can make a rough profit and cover your Amazon FBA fees. 

2. Small and Lightweight

Amazon also charges based on shipping weight. Stocking small and lightweight products help you keep these additional fees down, going home with more profit. 

3. Has More Than 100 Reviews

You can probably relate to this on a customer level. Are you likely to buy something that has no reviews? Probably not. Going for something with lots of reviews adds credibility that your product is legit and will serve the customer’s needs. 

Choose products in a similar category to ones that already exist, such as a certain type of water bottle or book reading light. Using the credibility of other established products makes it easier for customers to purchase your items. 

4. Easy to Manufacture Products 

This is another tip for pragmatic Amazon product ideas. You don’t want anything that uses expensive materials or lots of labor to create. The lower the manufacturing cost, the more profit enters your pocket. 

5. Can Be Sold Around the Year

You might consider it worthwhile to invest in holiday-centric items, such as Christmas, Valentine’s Day, Halloween, or the Fourth of July. You can do that once you’ve gained a little capital from your FBA success, but we recommend holding off on time-sensitive product ideas. 

You don’t want your initial stock to sit around in Amazon fulfillment centers. They will continue to accrue fees and become less profitable over time. You want something that customers will want to buy every month to avoid losing money from warehouse fees. 

6. A Product That Needs to be Improved 

This is perhaps the best tip we can give you. What’s already on the market that people buy but can be improved? Is there a new form of toothbrush that’s biodegradable and has better bristles to clean under the gums? Are there house slippers that are a cut above the rest? 

Find a product category that needs improvement. From there, find a product that will fulfill what customers are already yearning for. If you find that magical product, you’ll elbow your way through the competition and come out on top. 

Tips for Finding What Products to Sell on FBA

Photo by Kelly Sikkema Licensed Under CC0

Hopefully, you have ideas for what products to sell on Amazon. But here are some additional tips to refine your idea and have a fighting chance at making a profitable investment on FBA. 

1. Don’t Try to Compete with Big Brands

For example, water bottles would be an excellent choice for Amazon FBA, but they’re already dominated by Nalgene and Hydroflask. 

These big brands have the marketing power, manufacturing base, and customer loyalty that you as an individual seller don’t have. It’s best to let these big brands have the market and find something else you have a chance at. 

2. Stay Organized

We highly recommend keeping a spreadsheet of all the Amazon product ideas you’ve looked at, the date you encountered the product, and any notes about it. 

Staying organized prevents you from wasting time researching products you looked at but forgot details about. You can also look at your data to tease out any trends and find what products to sell on Amazon that way. 

3. Thoroughly Read Customer Reviews

Take a deep look at negative customer reviews. What could you do differently? Could you offer products that don’t break a few weeks after purchase? What about products that have an off-putting chemical smell out of the box? 

Conversely, note positive customer reviews as well. What did customers rave about? What did they love? And most importantly, did they say, “I would buy this product again?” 

Customer reviews are your bread and butter. They tell you the needs and wants of your customer base. They also give you the criteria your Amazon product idea should have to be successful in that market. 

4. Pick Products That Can Be Sold Together

You don’t have to sell complementary products, but it can be something to consider should your FBA business do well. If you find the best electric toothbrush, for example, you could then pick a great toothpaste to sell together. 

Picking complementary items is an easy way to find more Amazon product ideas. Your customer saves time buying products they’ll probably need for their initial purpose. Your customer is happy, and you get more profit. 

Where to Source Amazon FBA Products From

When finding what products to sell on Amazon, you want to buy lots of items at a low price. That’s why we recommend 

  • Alibaba. Alibaba is essentially the Amazon of wholesale products. You can find pretty much anything you could want on here, purchasing items by the thousands at a low cost. 
  • Local wholesale markets. Since many of the products from Alibaba are sourced in China, other sellers may find it within their financial philosophy to source their products from local wholesale manufacturers. Keeping manufacturing in the USA also provides a unique marketing point that may entice certain customers. 

Wholesale markets are the best place to start when considering what products to sell on FBA. You can find other manufacturing routes should you find financial success with your FBA business.

Summary of What Products to Sell on FBA

Here are the main takeaways of finding Amazon product ideas: 

  • Keep goods between $25 – $50
  • Keep them small and lightweight (2 – 3 lbs preferred)
  • But don’t have them break easily, as they could get damaged during transport
  • Don’t pick seasonal products — opt for evergreen ones
  • Find products that need an improvement

Selling on Amazon FBA may feel scary at first. Any financial risk does. But this article helped guide your decision in picking what products to sell on Amazon. You should continue to do deep research into your niche, but we hope you can get to selling quickly.