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How to sell products on Amazon Canada
Find out how you can profit from one of the world’s biggest online retailers.
The Amazon Marketplace gives you a way to get your products in front of everyone shopping on Amazon Canada, but there’s a bit that goes into this platform. This guide will take you through how to sell products on the Marketplace and what else you need to know to decide if it’s right for your business.
How does selling on Amazon Canada work?
The Amazon Marketplace is a platform that allows third-party sellers to sell their products through Amazon. Sales through Amazon’s Marketplace represent 50% of all items sold on Amazon’s websites globally.
Sellers are responsible for setting their own price points, writing product descriptions and their own branding. A lot of Amazon retailer sales depend on where your item appears in product searches, so getting this right is extremely important. In terms of costs, you’ll also need to pay a monthly subscription fee and commission to sell your products.
Who can sell products on Amazon Canada?
There are no specific criteria, but you will need to have the following information to be able to sign up to a seller account:
- Business name, address and contact information
- A credit card that can be charged internationally and that has a valid billing address
- Your phone number
- Your tax identity information
When you sign up, an Amazon representative will contact you on the phone number you provide to complete the process.
What can I sell?
Businesses in Canada can sell products more than 25 product categories, including the following:
- Home and Garden (including Pet Supplies)
- Clothing and Accessories
- DVDs and Blu-Rays
- Consumer Electronics
- Toys and games
- Automotive Parts & Accessories
- Baby Products
- Grocery & Gourmet
- Sports & Outdoors
- Health & Personal Care
Where do I get products to sell?
When selling on Amazon, you’re not required to get your inventory from specific suppliers. How you acquire items to sell is up to you. Consider the following options when choosing your inventory:
- Sell items you have made. Although this would be difficult to sustain if you plan to sell many items to lots of customers, you may be able to produce and sell your own stock for low-volume sales or for digital goods such as self-published books or audiobooks.
- Resell valuable used or unwanted items. This could be suitable if you plan to run a used-book business or want to sell collectibles.
- Wholesale suppliers. Many retailers order stock from giant wholesalers like Alibaba and AliExpress, which sell items directly from manufacturers, thereby cutting out the retail middleman and reducing the cost.
- Dropshipping. Instead of buying inventory in anticipation of customer demand and storing it until orders roll in, dropshipping involves submitting customer orders straight to a distributor warehouse, from which items are packaged and shipped. This eliminates the need to store your own goods and risk getting stuck with excess inventory that won’t sell.
How do I price my products?
There are message boards and blogs dedicated to the subtle art that is pricing Amazon products. Chatting with other sellers on these forums can be quite useful when setting your prices, as is reading about existing sellers’ experiences and successes using the Amazon platform.
Here are some factors to keep in mind when determining your price points:
- What are your costs and fees? It costs money to sell on Amazon (this is explained in more detail below) so take this into account when setting your prices. Also consider customer return fees and your own returns-related costs, such as product write-offs.
- Competition. What are your competitor’s price points? Check Amazon’s overseas sites as well until it launches in Canada.
- Flexibility. Selling on Amazon requires price flexibility. Your prices should change depending on where your product is ranking in Amazon’s search results and in response to other sellers changing their prices.
How much will Amazon Canada charge me to sell?
Amazon Canada has the following cost structure for its Marketplace:
- Professional Selling Plan. Pay a monthly subscription fee of $29.99 to list products on Amazon.ca. This is suitable if you plan to sell more than 20 items per month.
- Individual Selling Plan. There’s no monthly fee, but you’ll pay $1.49 per item sold plus a 6-15% commission fee off the top of any sales generated through the Marketplace. This fee will be determined by the type of product you’re selling. Note that a couple of products categories such as Amazon device accessories, extended warranties, protection plans and service contracts generate higher selling fees.
How do I organize shipping?
As a seller, you need to organize shipping yourself. If you’re handling your own shipping you should keep an eye on your inventory so you can provide accurate information about stock levels to buyers. It’s also important to check orders daily so you can have orders shipped out on time as per your shipping and fulfillment policies.
Amazon also offers an optional shipping service, Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA). This essentially allows sellers to store and dispatch their goods through Amazon’s warehouses. By using FBA your customers will get free shipping on eligible orders and Prime members will receive 2-day shipping. FBA is also pay-as-you-go so you’re charged for the storage space and orders Amazon fills.
How do I market my products?
There are multiple ways to market your products on Amazon Canada. These include through marketing, social media, branding and optimizing your products listings. Amazon uses a marketplace search engine to rank products and it considers various factors in product listings to do this. Do research to find out the best way to present your product features, price, features, availability and sales history to rank well in Amazon search.
Is selling on Amazon Canada worth it?
There are a number of online retail giants available for you to sell products on, eBay being one of the most notable examples already available in Canada. The main things you should consider when deciding if Amazon is right for you is the product you’re selling, the audience you’re trying to target and how the cost structure will affect your profits.
However, keep in mind that there are many factors that will affect your success and there’s no guarantee you’ll make a profit. Try to lessen this risk by doing things like market research and analyzing what strategies your competitors are using.
How do I start selling?
- Go to Amazon’s seller hub and click “Start selling”.
- Sign in to your Amazon account. You’ll need to make an account if you don’t have one.
- Give information about your business including address and phone number. Amazon will text your number to verify you. Your business name needs to be unique and not one taken already.
- Set up your billing method. It has to be either an Amex, Visa or Mastercard.
- Add in details about what products you want to sell, like how many and what categories they fall under. You can skip this part if you’re unsure.
- Your account will be set up. Keep in mind that you’ll need to set up 2FA (2-factor authentication) and wait for Amazon to verify your account before you can begin selling.
How to get paid by international buyers
If you’re selling your products overseas and are accepting currencies other than Canadian dollars, you’ll need to find a worthwhile way to convert your profits back into CAD. Your options boil down to two methods:
- Foreign bank account. This involves setting up a bank account in the country your items are listed in and then transferring your money back to Canada. Setting up a foreign bank account can be a complex procedure and you’ll need to be aware of the different regulations each country has. You’re also likely to get a poor exchange rate when you go to convert your profits and may face high fees at both the sending and receiving banks.
- Third-party money transfer service. Several money transfer services offer online seller accounts which are aimed at those selling overseas on marketplaces like Amazon. You can get an account that can hold multiple different currencies and bank details in the country you’re selling in. You’ll also get better exchange rates than through your bank when it’s time to transfer your money to CAD.
For more details on the exchange rates, fees and features of online sellers accounts, you can read more in our guide or check out the table below.
Frequently asked questions
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