Common Amazon Seller Failures and How to Avoid Them
What’s up, everyone! My name is Eric Walsh, and I am a seven-figure Amazon seller. It wasn’t easy to get here, and I certainly experienced some failures along the way. These experiences, though frustrating, allowed me to become more successful by teaching me what not to do. In your journey to becoming a successful Amazon seller, you may experience some failure, too. Here are some of the common mistakes for beginner Amazon sellers to avoid, and how I managed to get through them and become successful.
Not enough Amazon experts out there are talking about failure and what it takes to successfully start and build a business as a seller. When I first started on Amazon in 2013, I had no idea what I was doing. My first company, Mobile Rescue, was a cell phone accessory and repair store. I sat at my desk in the back looking around at all of the merchandise I had laying around. I thought to myself, “How can I monetize all of this inventory?” My first thought was eBay.
To me, eBay always seemed like the Wild West of online selling, thought of by the public as unpolished and at times maybe even a little sleazy. These conceptions made me gravitate towards Amazon. I was drawn in by the user experience, the comfort factor of knowing you’re getting good quality products, the customer satisfaction rates, and the fact that the platform was growing rapidly and doing what eBay did not do in protecting the shopping experience.
Some common mistakes of beginner Amazon sellers (made by yours truly):
- Not doing your research
I had a bunch of iPad cases when the iPad first came out, so I applied to open an Amazon seller account. Once I was approved, I didn’t know what I was doing at all. I started creating listings, but I had no clue about trademarks, intellectual property, etc., and all of these things ended up getting me in trouble. My iPad cases started selling right away, and when I was shipping them, I was doing it all myself. I didn’t know about Amazon FBA (Fulfillment by Amazon.) When I had my store manager shipping out the items for me, we weren’t uploading tracking numbers back into Amazon, so packages were getting lost in the mail. All in all, I was creating a bad customer experience—the number one thing Amazon prides itself on.
I also found other listings of the same case I was selling. What I didn’t know was that those sellers had a trademark protecting their brand and intellectual property, which led to the suspension of my Amazon account. Yikes.
I needed to educate myself on Amazon’s terms of service, as well as what a trademark is, how to protect one’s intellectual property, and how to make sure you don’t violate other sellers’ intellectual property. I was pleased to find that filing creating my trademark was nowhere near as expensive or complicated as I thought.
So, what does a trademark do? A trademark creates intellectual property so that your brand and business can be passed on or sold at any point in time. You own the value you created in the asset. Too many people look at Amazon selling like eBay—just selling random everyday products willy-nilly—and yes, sellers do sell everyday products. The difference is they can private label them under their own brand, which creates much more value. Believe me, this is well worth your time, effort, and energy.
- Selling the wrong products
After the debacle of getting my Amazon account suspended, I was able to get it back months later. I then started sourcing random products in China to sell. Fidget spinners, Pokémon plush toys, hoverboards—all these random fad items, and they were all failures. This is what the “experts” don’t talk about. I lost hundreds of thousands of dollars on unsold products that were bad ideas from the start. I spent tens of thousands of advertising dollars to get my products out there in front of people, but truthfully, I had no idea what I was doing. It took me years and hundreds of thousands of dollars to perfect the blueprint that I finally discovered. Had I given up at any point in time after losing all of this money, I would’ve never discovered this blueprint that I now share in my Genius Academy Masterclass. The class is designed so that no one makes the same mistakes I made or loses the amount of money I lost (or anywhere near it.) With my proven strategy, you can multiple your success tenfold.
A lot of Amazon sellers are very private about what they sell, and I have never understood their reasoning. If they created an Amazon business the right way, with trademarks and intellectual property ownership, then it would not matter if the world knew what they were selling, because nobody would be allowed to touch it. I’ll prove it by offering two examples of products that I sell today that have made me wildly successful:
- I sell a woman’s silicone gel nipple pasty cover on Amazon. I sell the product for $8.99, and it costs me no more than $1.50 to source, making 3 to 4 dollars per unit sold. The product is stored in an Amazon warehouse. I ship thousands of units directly from China to Amazon, so that when my customers make a purchase, Amazon picks, packs, and fulfills the orders for me. Amazon does all of the work for me while I sell between 30 and 50 units every day on total autopilot. I launched this product less than $1,500, and now silicone nipple covers generate passive income to the tune of $3,500-5,000/month.
- One of the very first products I started selling on Amazon about five years ago that I still sell today is a sticker pack. The pack costs me 25 cents to make, and I sell it for $7.99 on Amazon—an over $7 profit per unit. I sell anywhere between 40 and 60 units a day with the same profit margin as the nipple covers.
What I am trying to show you here is that you can start an Amazon business with very little money as long as you’re willing to do the research the right way—the way I teach it in my Genius Academy Masterclass.
There is always risk when it comes to selling, but this risk can be substantially minimized by making very educated decisions, analyzing data, and identifying homerun potential products that will consistently sell, day in and day out.
The Genius Academy Masterclass is my tell-all, show-all program, educating students on everything I learned in my journey to becoming a 7-figure Amazon seller. I wish that when I first started selling on Amazon, I found a resource like this to learn from—it would have saved me a boatload of time and money. If I could’ve been mentored by an Amazon expert from the start, I would have saved years of learning and hundreds of thousands of dollars, and I would have become successful significantly faster. Not to mention the amount of time I could have saved by removing the learning curve!
The single best investment any of us can make is an investment in ourselves. You are doing yourself a disservice by investing your time and energy in other people’s goals, other companies, and other businesses that at the end of the day, you have no control of. You are a company that no one but you can control—invest in that.
If you want to build a passive income that can lead to total financial freedom as a successful Amazon seller, sign up for Eric Walsh’s Genius Academy Masterclass here.