Entrepreneurs in South Africa have been clamoring for years to be able to sell on Amazon, the world’s largest eCommerce site. No matter how many times we tried to contact them, we never got an answer as to why they didn’t accept South African sellers.
On their website, it was difficult to create a new seller account because the drop-down menu for the country of residence didn’t include South Africa.
How to sell on Amazon as a South Africa reseller
In order to become a successful seller on Amazon, you’ll need to join a retail destination that is home to sellers of all kinds, from Fortune 500 companies to artisan vendors who create handcrafted goods. To reach the several millions of customers who shop on Amazon, they all sell here.
They now account for 58 percent of Amazon’s sales since 1999, when third-party sellers first joined.
Amazon’s third-party sales are increasing at a rate of 52 percent per year (compared to 25 percent for first-party sales by Amazon)
Before you begin selling, consider the following.
How to sign up for an account
You can sell one item or thousands with Amazon’s two selling plans, Individual and Professional, which you can think of as standard and premium. Choosing the right plan before registering your business is critical to the success of your venture.
It costs $0.99 per sale for the Individual plan and $39.99 per month for the Professional plan. Selling more than 40 items a month is a good use of the Professional option. Whatever plan you choose, don’t worry about making a mistake you can change plans at any time without penalty.
How to get started
Make sure you have access to:
- Bank account numbers and bank routing numbers are both required to open a bank account.
- Credit cards that can be used to pay for things
- Identity card issued by the government Information on taxes
What is the cost of selling on Amazon?
Sales commissions come in many forms, depending on your selling plan and the products you sell.
Fees for subscriptions
If you choose a different selling plan, you’ll pay different fees.
A flat monthly fee of $39.99 applies to the Professional selling plan. There is no per-item charge.
For each item sold on the Individual selling plan, there is a $0.99 fee per item.
There is a charge for selling.
As a percentage of the selling price, they include referral fees, as well as variable closing fees (which apply only to media categories).
Cost of shipping
Amazon’s shipping rates apply to orders that you fulfill yourself. On the basis of the product category and shipping service selected by our customers, we charge these shipping rates.
Fees for the use of the FBA
There are fees for order fulfillment, storage, and optional services for products that Amazon fulfills for you (known as Fulfillment by Amazon, or FBA).
How to add products to a list?
Your first product listing
First, you need to create a product listing on Amazon. Create a new listing or match an existing one (if someone else is already selling the same product on Amazon) (if you are the first or only seller).
How sellers upload and list their products varies according to the type of sale they are making. Professional sellers can list their products in large batches using bulk uploading or inventory management with third-party systems, while Individual sellers list products one at a time.
It will be available to both B2C and B2B customers once you have successfully listed your product on the site! A single account and no additional fees allow you to expand the reach of your offers.
What you’ll need to get started with product listings
A Global Trade Item Number (GTIN), such as a UPC, ISBN, or EAN is required for most products. These product IDs are used by Amazon to identify the exact item that you’re trying to sell. A product ID is not required when matching a listing because it already exists. As a new Amazon seller, you may need a UPC code, or you may be exempt.
The following information is included in each product listing, in addition to the product ID:
- Name of the product Description of the product and bullets
- Various images of products
- Keywords and search terms that are relevant
Many small business owners have benefited from online marketplaces like Amazon and Takealot. Small businesses are able to tap into the large e-commerce companies’ active users, customer service, and logistics structures. In return, these companies charge a variety of fees, including a success fee based on a percentage of each sale.
Third-party platforms, on the other hand, are not without complexities and critics.
In recent years, online marketplaces have begun to eclipse online retailers’ own inventories and catalogs. Stores like Amazon and Takealot are selling an increasing number of third-party products – around 55 percent of the products that Amazon sells are from third-party sellers. Furthermore, the majority (nearly 75 percent) of these sellers are small businesses with between one and five employees in 2018.
South Africa’s biggest online stores are also making moves to tap into the global platform economy, which is now worth around R100 trillion, despite Amazon and Alibaba leading the charge abroad.
Despite being the largest of its kind in South Africa, Takealot Marketplace is only a fraction of the global platform economy, but it has grown significantly in recent years. Others, including Makro, Loot and even the fashion retailer Zando has followed suit.
Markets offer small businesses a number of advantages
“Marketplaces” are based on a simple concept that is similar to the traditional brick-and-mortar model of consignment sales.
Products that align with (and don’t undermine) their brand and catalogs will be stocked in the stores, and if shoppers buy your listed products, the stores will handle most of the logistics and you’ll be paid.
Marketplaces offer wall space and visibility as their primary benefits. Established and trusted brands like Amazon, Makro, and Takealot are the first stop for many online shoppers. Search engine optimization has also made them more visible than many privately-owned small business websites.
Strangely enough, established brands are increasingly turning to marketplaces as additional sales channels in addition to their websites. GHD and Le Creuset, for example, have a presence on Takealot’s Marketplace in South Africa.
Your products are listed on the big online stores as if they were their own, and they handle some of the complex logistics associated with selling products online, including warehousing and shipping as well as return policies as well as online payment processing.
To facilitate and ease the sales process, some marketplaces give sellers access to a back-end system that helps with stock levels.
Following this guide will aid you to become successful as a seller from South Africa on Amazon, all you need to know and other relevant information can be found on the official Amazon page as a reseller.