Amazon boasts over 150 million monthly unique visitors according to its website, making them a very desirable marketplace. Amazon features several different ways to get your product listed. One of the most common ways to start selling is as a third-party seller through a Professional Seller account. The other selling option is Amazon Vendor Central and selling directly to Amazon. Let’s take a look at each of these account types:
As a Professional Seller (previously known at Pro Merchant) on Amazon, your business can reap many benefits. If you expect to sell more than 40 items per month, then the Professional Seller account is the choice for you. Rather than the Individual Seller $0.99 per item fee, there is a monthly fee of $39.99 plus additional shipping fees and referral fees for Professional Sellers.
There are a series of restricted categories that require approval before listing. Professional Sellers are able to sell in these restricted categories. Professional sellers are also eligible to compete for the Buy Box on product detail pages.
Professional accounts also have access to Amazon Seller Central platform tools.
- Amazon Seller Central allows you to control pricing and inventory for the highest sales margins of all seller options.
- You’ll have access to inventory and order reports and some customer data.
- You can use volume listing tools for managing bulk inventory. The listing tools allow you to utilize spreadsheets to manage listings. You can also upload modifications in bulk using spreadsheets.
Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) is available to both individual and professional seller accounts.
- Sellers can leverage Fulfillment by Amazon to manage order fulfillment, storage, and customer service. Sellers pay additional Amazon Fees including Fulfillment Fees, Monthly Storage Fees, plus Referral Fee.
- Products that are FBA are labeled with “Prime” logo on the product detail page and have increased Buy Box placement
- Professional accounts can also use Amazon Sponsored Product advertising to increase visibility.
- FBA products can also use Multi-Channel Fulfillment to ship products to customers who have ordered through other sales channels such as the seller’s own website.
Fulfillment by Merchant (FBM) is available to both individual and professional seller accounts.
- The seller stores and ships inventory themselves, paying only the Amazon Referral Fee per product
- Sellers have total control over pricing and inventory of their products.
- Sellers handle customer service themselves, including returns.
- Products may be eligible for the Prime shipping label through Amazon’s Seller-Fulfilled Prime program if they are accepted after application.
Amazon Vendor Central makes Amazon the full-time distributor of your products. With this wholesale method, you sell your products directly to Amazon as a first-party vendor and the distributor (Amazon) then handles shipping costs, merchandising, customer service, and customer returns.
Amazon Vendor Central is accessible by invitation only. Amazon buys and sells your inventory and controls shipping, pricing, and customer service. Through this wholesale service, sellers also can participate in Amazon Display Advertising and have access to Amazon Marketing Service and Amazon Vine, the product review network.
- Sellers can list an unlimited number of products of which all are eligible for Prime shipping.
- Products display the “Prime” logo and the Seller information reads “Ships from and Sold by Amazon” in the
- You can create A+ enhanced marketing content for product detail pages, which includes options for a comparison matrix, interactive product tour, and more.
- You’ll have access to marketing benefits such as Coupons, Lightning Deals, Gold Box Deals, and Holiday Gift Guides.
- Access to detailed business analytics information with sales metrics, traffic, and geographic sales analysis.
- Amazon issues wholesale purchase orders once per week to ship in bulk to Amazon fulfillment centers.