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How to sell on Amazon: a guide for beginners

Get an overview of how to create a selling account, list products, fulfill customer orders, and more. Learn how to sell—whether you’re new to online retail or just new to selling in the Amazon store.
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Welcome to Amazon selling—where customer obsession is key

Amazon is one of the most trusted brands in the US. We work hard to provide every customer with what they need when they need it—and we’re excited every time a new seller joins our community and starts providing Amazon customers with an even wider selection of products. It’s no secret: you’re a big part of how we offer the best shopping experience possible.

More than 60% of sales in the Amazon store
come from independent sellers

Why independent sellers choose Amazon

Why do so many independent sellers choose Amazon as a channel for their business? Because they get to sell in a store that more customers trust—and they get to do it with higher-impact tools and programs that cost less than alternatives. That means more opportunities for growth and more chances to transform how you sell.

Get ready to sell

Choose a selling plan

We offer two selling plans so you can choose the right package of tools and services for the right price.
  • The Individual selling plan costs $0.99 per sale.
  • The Professional selling plan costs $39.99 per month, no matter how many items you sell.
Each plan also provides you with access to a specific group of optional programs. You can change or cancel your selling plan at any time.

Amazon also collects a referral fee on each item sold, and other selling fees can apply in some cases. Some optional tools and programs involve added costs.

Create a Seller Central account

After choosing your selling plan, you’ll register with Amazon, select your plan, and create a Seller Central account. You can create your account using the email address associated with your Amazon customer account, or you can create it using a separate business email address.

Before you create your Seller Central account, make sure you have the following:
  • Bank account and routing number
  • Internationally chargeable credit card
  • Government-issued ID
  • Tax information
  • Phone number

Configure your Seller Central account

Once you’ve completed seller registration, you’ll have access to your Seller Central account. You can think of Seller Central as your hub for selling in the Amazon store. You can use it to list and price products, manage your inventory, and fulfill customer orders. You can also use tools in Seller Central to create promotions and coupons, track payments and expenses, and much more. Consider adding other users to your account if you’d like help with certain tasks.
Before you start selling, you’ll want to configure your Seller Central account for your business. Make sure you review, confirm, or adjust the following, as needed:
  • Public seller profile
  • Payment and business information
  • Shipping and returns settings
  • Tax information and settings
  • Notification preferences
  • Login settings
  • User permissions
Go mobile

Use the free Amazon Seller app

The Amazon Seller app is packed with features to help you manage and grow your ecommerce business wherever you are. It gives you the freedom to take care of business details right from your phone or tablet.
Click here to download the Amazon Seller app on the Apple App Store
Click here to download the Amazon Seller app on Google Play

Enroll your brand

If you’re the rights owner for an eligible brand, we recommend enrolling it in Amazon Brand Registry before you list your products. That makes it easier to associate your products with your brand name. Brand Registry is free and provides sellers with a suite additional selling benefits and protection tools.

After enrolling your brand:
  • You’ll have greater control over the information on your product detail pages.
  • You’ll be able to access no-cost tools like A+ Content, Stores, Manage Your Experiments, and Brand Analytics, which can help you grow your audience and increase sales.
  • You’ll enjoy automated protections for your brand and access to additional reporting options.

Don't have an Amazon seller account yet?

List products

Understand the product detail page

If you’ve shopped in the Amazon store, you’ll recognize the product detail page. It’s where customers find all relevant information about an item.

When multiple sellers offer the same product, Amazon combines their offers on one product detail page to make it easier for customers to find, compare, and purchase items.
Amazon Seller Central product detail page showing where descriptions go
1.
Title
200 characters max, capitalize the first letter of every word
2.
Images
500 x 500 or 1,000 x 1,000 pixels to increase listing quality
3.
Variations
Such as different colors, scents, or sizes
4.
Bullet points
Short, descriptive sentences highlighting key features and benefits
5.
Featured offer ("Buy Box")
The featured offer on a detail page. Customers can add to their cart or “Buy Now”
6.
Other offers
The same product sold by multiple sellers offering a different price, shipping options, etc.
7.
Description
Keywords improve the chances that people will find your listing

Make sure your products are safe and compliant

Customers trust that they can always buy with confidence in the Amazon store. Products offered for sale in the Amazon store must comply with all laws and regulations, as well as Amazon policies. Before you start the listing process, make sure your understand our Product safety and Restricted products policies.

Find or obtain a product ID (GTIN)

The primary tool we use to pair a seller’s offer with the correct product detail page is a product ID, also called a Global Trade Item Number (GTIN). It can often be found on packaging above or below the product’s barcode. The most common GTIN used by Amazon sellers is a UPC, but you might also find an ISBN, EAN, or JAN on your product.

In some cases, you might need to obtain a GTIN for a product from Global Standards 1. In rare cases, you might apply for a GTIN exemption from Amazon.

Match or create a product listing

If the product you want to sell is already in the Amazon store, you can use its GTIN to match an offer to the existing product detail page. If a product isn’t already in the Amazon store, you’ll need to create a new product detail page and can add your offer information simultaneously.

All sellers can match or create product listings one at a time. Professional sellers can also match or create product listings in bulk.

Your ability to list a product in the Amazon store can depend on its category, condition, and brand. In some cases, you’ll need to apply to sell a product, category, or brand. You’ll be prompted to do so during the listing process.

Listing: product categories and conditions

Visit Seller Central to learn how to request approval for a category. If you want to ship orders through Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA), be sure to also review specific FBA product restrictions.

Product categories

Product category

Example products

Conditions allowed

Categories without restrictions
Amazon Device Accessories
Amazon devices accessories
New, Used
Amazon Kindle
Kindle devices accessories
Used
Beauty
Fragrance, skincare, makeup, hair care, bath & shower (topicals require approval). See also Health & Personal Care.
New
Books, calendars, card decks, sheet music, magazines, journals, other publications
New, Used
Business Products (B2B)
Business-relevant products across multiple categories. Special pricing features to target business customers.
New, Used
Beauty Tools & Accessories
Brushes, bags, cases, skin care tools, hair styling tools
New
Camera & Photo
Cameras, camcorders, telescopes
New, Used
Cell Phones
Cell phones and accessories must be listed using the manufacturer’s Universal Product Code (UPC).
New, Used, Unlocked
Outerwear, athletic wear, innerwear, belts, wallets
New
Electronics Accessories
Audio, video, camera, photo, cell phone, car electronics, computer, and office accessories
New, Used
Jewelry that does not contain precious or semi-precious gemstones, pearls, metals
New
Home & Garden
Kitchen, dining, pet supplies, furniture, décor, bedding, bath, craft, hobby, home appliances, storage, patio, lawn, garden, pool supplies, landscaping, snow removal, generators
New, Used, Collectible
Luggage & Travel Accessories
Luggage, bags, backpacks, briefcases, umbrellas, travel accessories
New
Musical Instruments
Guitars, orchestra, recording equipment
New, Used, Collectible
Office Products
Supplies, furniture, printers, calculators
New, Used, Collectible
Outdoors
Outdoor gear, outdoor sports apparel, cycling, and action sports
New, Used
Shoes, Handbags & Sunglasses
Shoes, boots, sandals, slippers, handbags, sunglasses, eyewear frames
New
Software & Computer Games
Business, media education, utility, security, children's software and PC games
New, Used
Sports
Exercise & fitness, hunting accessories, team sports, licensed/fan shop, athletic apparel, boating & fishing, and game room
New, Used, Collectible
Tools & Home Improvement
Hand & power tools, plumbing, electrical, building materials, appliance parts
New, Used
Toys & Games
Action figures, dolls, board games, arts, crafts, furniture, learning toys (holiday selling requirements apply)
New, Collectible
Video Games & Video Game Consoles
Game consoles, console games, accessories
New, Used, Collectible
Categories with restrictions
Automotive & Powersports
New, Used, Collectible
Baby Products
Topicals, food, feeding products, diapers, strollers, carriers, toys
New
Beauty Topicals
Cosmetics, fragrance, skincare, makeup, hair care, bath & shower, topicals
New
Certified Refurbished
Laptops & computers, smartphones, tablets, kitchen appliances, office equipment
Collectible Coins
Graded collectible coins minted by governments, US Mint packaged product, gold coins, silver coins, platinum coins, palladium coins
Collectible
Entertainment Collectibles
Celebrity signed photos, original movie posters, limited-edition figures and busts, animation cels
Collectible
Explosives, Weapons, & Related Items
New
Handmade
Handmade and hand-altered products
Health & Personal Care
First aid, nutrition, feminine hygiene, dietary supplements
New
Historical & Advertising Collectibles
Vintage collectibles related to historical people, places, or events and promotional materials related to consumer brands.
Collectible
Industrial & Scientific
Lab equipment & supplies, industrial materials, power transmission, electronic components, sanitation, janitorial
New
Medication
Drugs approved by the FDA to be sold over the counter. See drugs & drug paraphernalia
New
Music
CDs, cassettes, vinyl, and other sound recordings
New, Used, Collectible
Sports Collectibles
Trading cards, game-used and autographed items
Collectible
Video, DVD & Blu-Ray
New, Used, Collectible
Watches
All watches
New
Warranties, Services Plans, Contracts, & Guarantees
N/A

Listing: brands

  • If a product is part of a brand enrolled in Amazon Brand Registry, only three types of sellers can create its product detail page using our standard listing processes:
    • the original rights owner who enrolled the brand
    • other sellers internal to the brand
    • resellers who’ve been associated with the brand
  • After a product is listed by one of the above sellers, others sellers can match offers to its product detail page. They may be prompted to complete a brand selling application first.

Amazon jargon:

ASIN

Every product in the Amazon store is automatically assigned an ASIN, or Amazon Standard Identification Number. This number is different from a GTIN and SKU. If you don’t have a GTIN for a product, you can try to match an offer to an existing product detail page using its ASIN instead.

Don't have an Amazon seller account yet?

Price products

Before you set prices for your products, you’ll want to get familiar with key concepts we use to organize and support pricing in the Amazon store.
  • Competitive external price: the lowest price for an item from major retailers outside Amazon. We share competitive external prices with sellers. For your own price to be considered competitive, your standard item price, plus shipping, must be less than or equal to the competitive external price.
  • Featured Offer: the offer a customer often sees near the top of a product detail page with ‘Buy Now’ and ‘Add to Cart’ buttons. To compete for the Featured Offer, a seller must set a competitive price and have a Professional selling plan. The product also needs to be in new condition.
  • Lowest Amazon price: the lowest price currently offered by a seller in the Amazon store. We share the current lowest Amazon price to give sellers who list a product to the opportunity to match or beat it.
Want to optimize your prices? Learn how the Automate pricing tool can help you become the Featured Offer for a product in the Amazon store.

Select your fulfillment method

You have two basic options for getting customers their stuff:
  1. You can fulfill orders yourself, maintaining your own inventory and shipping products directly to customers. We call this merchant-fulfilled shipping (MFN).
  2. You can send your inventory to Amazon and have us pick, pack, and deliver products through Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA). FBA also takes care of customer service and returns.
Each method has its own benefits—and you can decide which one is right for each product you sell. If you’re a current seller, you can also use our Revenue Calculator to compare estimates for FBA and your own fulfillment method.

Monitor your performance

To sell in the Amazon store, you’re required to comply with all applicable laws and Amazon policies. Our Account Health dashboard provides an overview of your account’s adherence to policies and various performance targets.

Customer Service Performance

Your customer-service performance is measured using what we call an Order Defect Rate (ODR). Your ODR is the percentage of your orders with one or more indicators of poor customer service. That could be negative customer feedback or a credit-card chargeback. We require sellers to maintain an ODR under 1%.
Looking for help with customer service?

Account Health Rating

We provide sellers an overview of their compliance with key Amazon selling policies, including our intellectual-property, authenticity, listing, and restricted-product policies. To maintain a ‘Good’ rating, make sure to address any policy violations listed on your Account Health dashboard. If your rating is ‘At Risk’ or ‘Critical’, your account may be at risk of deactivation.

Shipping Performance

You can use three metrics to help assess the health of your MFN shipping performance:
  • Your Late Shipment Rate (LSR) is the percentage of your seller-fulfilled orders that have a shipping confirmation after their expected shipping date. You should aim to keep it below 4%.
  • Your Pre-fulfillment Cancel Rate (CR) is the percentage of seller-fulfilled orders you cancel. You should aim to keep it below 2.5%.
  • Your Valid Tracking Rate (VTR) is the percentage of packages from your seller-fulfilled orders with a valid tracking number. You should aim to keep it above 95%.

Don't have an Amazon seller account yet?

Promote and advertise products

Use no-cost promotions and pay-per-click advertising to help your products and brands reach more customers.
  • Create coupons that appear on the Amazon Coupons page, in search results, and on product detail pages.
  • Offer percentage-off and buy-one-get-one promotions that appear as part of a Featured Offer.
  • Create Lighting and 7-Day Deals that appear on the Amazon Deals page. This is an option popular around shopping events like Prime Day.
  • Create Sponsored Products ads that feature a single product and appear in, alongside, and above customer search results in the Amazon store.
  • Use Sponsored Brands ads to feature up to three products, as well as a logo and headline. Or create a Sponsored Brands campaign with an auto-playing video that features a single product. These ads appear prominently above, alongside, and below search results.
  • Create Sponsored Display ads that feature a single product and can appear both in and beyond the Amazon store after a customer has viewed a product detail page, or if their other browsing behaviors show they’re interested in a product.

Get product reviews

After a customer buys a product, they can leave a public product review, a seller-feedback rating, or both. Try these tips to improve your chances of getting positive reviews and ratings:
  • Accurately represent a product on your product detail page.
  • Pack your products to help prevent damage during delivery.
  • Ship orders on time if you’re an MFN seller.
  • Provide customer refunds for products returned within 30 days of purchase.
  • Respond to customer messages within 24 hours.
  • Provide valid tracking numbers so customers can track their orders.
Eligible brands can use tools like Amazon Vine to generate reviews for their products. Make sure you’re familiar with the right and wrong ways to get more product reviews and avoid policy violations.

Grow with tools and programs

Perfect Launch

The first 90 days are especially critical for Amazon sellers. That’s why we created Perfect Launch, a playbook for new sellers that helps them generate sales more quickly using five key programs:
  • Brand Registry
  • Automate pricing
  • A+ Content
  • Fulfillment by Amazon
  • Advertising
To help you achieve Perfect Launch, we offer $50K in potential benefits.

More tools and programs

Looking for more ways to reach customers, sell products, and manage your business? Explore no-cost options and cost-effective tools and programs Amazon offers to help your business grow.
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Amazon Global Selling
Global expansion has a lot of moving parts, but with Amazon Global Selling, you can use Amazon infrastructure to get your products in front of a worldwide audience.
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Amazon Business
Business customers tend to buy more items in larger quantities. They also tend to return items less. Use a suite of B2B features to help attract more business customers.
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Product Opportunity Explorer
Get ideas for new products or offers. Product Opportunity Explorer generates insights about Amazon customer search and purchase behavior.

Drive online sales for your products

Learn how to get started selling with Amazon.

Start selling today

Put your products in front of the millions of customers who search Amazon.com every day.
$39.99 a month + selling fees
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Just have a few items to sell?
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