“99% of what determines whether or not you will be successful on FBA comes down to your product research” – Matt Loberstein
Product research for Amazon FBA is without question THE most talked about topic when first learning about selling on the Amazon platform. Get it right and everything else is easier. Get it wrong and you’ve likely wasted thousands of dollars and weeks (or months) of effort.
No doubt, in reading this, you’ve already been through the countless Youtube videos on HOW to do product research for FBA. The great majority of the info is how to talk to suppliers on Alibaba or how to use tools like Jungle Scout or Helium10 to search for product opportunities. Those are great but is there a bigger picture and extra things you can take into consideration to make sure you REALLY have a winner on your hands before you invest?
Of course there is….
Let’s break this down into 3 sections:
Product Research – Product Evaluation
Your product research should never be so shallow that you look at simple tools, filters, and numbers only.
This leaves you spending money on a product that you know zero about. I say zero and I truly mean not a damn thing in the way of connecting your product to the people you are trying to sell it to because you don’t understand the needs of those people if you take such a simple approach.
THIS IS MOST SELLERS ON AMAZON
Instead of starting with a product – start with a need you see as an opportunity to address. This can start with product ideas but those products should make you look deeper as to who is talking about the issues those products solve.
On the product side, I like to look at who the top 15-30 sellers are and look into the following:
What their units per month sold is averaging?
The average time they’ve been selling the items?
Are these items accessories or a main part of their offerings?
Are the items part of a single product brand or multiple product brand and how deep is the lineup if it is part of a multi product brand?
What is the estimated average cost from 20 different suppliers?
Use the FBA revenue calculator and sort out what the margins are after production, shipping and FBA fees – if it isn’t 30% or better then move on
Is the niche dominated by one seller at the top?
Can I position my product to be at the top of the market in price and quality?
Can I justify at least a 4x retail price over my landed cost?
Also consider these pillars of product research by Amazon master Steven Mayer:
Speed Of Reviews Per Month
Quality Of Reviews
Number Of Reviews
Age Of Listing
Sales (Last 60 Days)
Revenue (Last 60 Days)
Who Is Selling (AMZ/FBA/FBM)
Product Selling Price
BSR (Rank) History
Number Of Sellers Under Listings
Cash To Compete
FBA Calculator /Profit Margins
Keyword Search Terms Per month
Product Research – Competitor Evaluation
Never go to war blindly. Let your opponents reveal themselves to you beforehand.
“Let your plans be dark and impenetrable as night, and when you move, fall like a thunderbolt.” – Sun Tzu
When sizing up the competition, look at the top 15 or so and answer the following questions:
Are they running sponsored product ads
What are their keyword rankings for the product
How many units per day are they selling of said item
Do they have a website
Do they have a social media presence
Are they running and social media ads
If they have a website, does it rank on google
How much traffic does their listing get per day (SERPs search)
How much traffic do their other sites and social media pages get per day
How engaged are their fans?
Do they run contests
Message and email all of them and ask questions as a potential buyer and see how customer savvy they are
Read through their posts and listing to see if they are telling you what the product does vs what needs it addresses
If you REALLY want to get dirty – Spy on your competitors with the techniques I outline in this article:
How well do you REALLY know what your prospective customers want? Most amazon sellers look at some data and sell a product they think the customers are going to want. Wouldn’t it be easier to know ahead of time exactly what they want to buy, before purchasing the stock?
This is called Social Listening. There are a couple of articles here on the site regarding this topic and by answering the questions in the previous sections, you’ll already have practiced this exercise. Now we need to turn that effort toward the customers themselves and let them talk to us.
Go back and change the product idea to better suit those needs and audience and build out a marketing plan and angle for your product that your competition is too lazy to do.
If you actually take the time to answer the questions posed in this article, you’ll find that your money is exponentially more likely to return you more money when you invest into stock and marketing in the Amazon FBA game.
As always, I look forward to hearing your thoughts in the comments and in the Unstoppable FBA group.