Every once in a while, I seem to get into a flurry of selling items on Amazon.com.
Typically, the flurry is a result of my taking a look around my home office and deciding that I’ve got stuff piled up that I really don’t need anymore. I like to try to move the stuff out of my hands and into better hands!
Last I checked, about a third of Amazon’s sales are actually fulfilled by third-party sellers – in other words, by folks like me. By the way, I’ve also got a whole store (!) on Amazon for my Scott’s Kitchen food/recipes blog – but that store is just reselling new items from Amazon – not the used items I sell in my storefront.
Most of the time, I’m dealing with a surplus of books – although my physical book accumulation has slowed quite a bit since I got my Amazon Kindle. I typically haul most of the books down to the Donation Cart at the Menlo Park Library – knowing that the Friends of the Menlo Park Library can put them to good use or sell them at their annual book sale or on the Friends’ Amazon.com storefront to help raise money for the library.
I recently learned that Amazon actually provides me with a “storefront” page that lists all of the items that I’ve currently listed for sale. You can check it out here. Over the last two weeks (since upgrading to a new Canon EOS 5D Mark II), I’ve sold several Canon and Tamron lenses along with my original digital SLR, a Canon 30D + lens kit on Amazon.com. That 30D was a great camera!
As things sell and as I add new things for sale, my storefront page changes dynamically. If you have questions about any items I’ve got listed, feel free to contact me!
What do I pay Amazon.com for all of this? As a payments geek, I should be paying attention, right?
Amazon charges a commission between 6 – 15 percent of the sales price that varies based upon the kind of item being sold plus a $0.99 transaction fee. For camera and electronics-related items, the commission is 8 percent. For books, it’s 15 percent. Amazon also passes through a shipping fee paid by the seller to help offset shipping costs. More active sellers can further reduce their fees by enrolling in Amazon’s Pro Merchant program.
Based on the mix of stuff I’ve sold recently, I’m paying Amazon a commission of about 10 percent of gross sales to handle everything except fulfillment. For me, selling on Amazon just works – and is worth those commissions!
4 replies on “What Am I Selling on Amazon.com? And Why?”
I clicked through to your store and saw 6 items under the message “Items 1 – 21 of 21”. Whoops! Guess I need to send a note to some of my old colleagues about this. 🙂
Dave, yes – was wondering about that! At some point a few days ago I probably did have 21 items for sale – but not now!
You are right, selling on Amazon is very good. No charge to list items, lots of traffic, easy listing. What else could a seller want?
Yeah, but….Amazon also charges 15% of the shipping fee you collect from the customer.
So if your cost to ship an item from the west ooast to the east coast is 10, you have to charge the customer 12 just to break even. If you want to over cost of labor, material to ship the product, you need to charge 15.
Customers wont pay 15 in shipping.
amazon’s policy of charging 15% of the shipping fees is brutal…..but that is what a 1 ton gorilla can get away with!
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