How to Become a Profitable Amazon Vendor

Sharline Shaw

It’s no secret that running a successful Amazon business is quite challenging.

Being an Amazon vendor, you can expand your business and can build a strong reputation in the marketplace over time.

If you really want your business to be successful, Amazon is the best platform to get started with. Our Amazon experts help you build a successful business.

You need to continue the reading and learn how to become a successful Amazon vendor.

What is Amazon Vendor CentralWhat is Amazon Vendor Central?

Amazon vendor central is used by direct manufacturing and distributions. If you are selling the products through the vendor central, you will be considered a first-party seller.

You act like a supplier, selling the products directly to the Amazon in bulk. You can get registered on the vendor central only by invitation.

Sometimes the sellers can start with seller central and can generate the demand for their products to entice Amazon to buy their products in bulk through the central vendor program.

If the company sold through the vendor central, the phrase ships from and sold by Amazon will appear on the order page.

The Amazon vendor central offer many benefit, such as:

  • Invites only
  • A+ content
  • Sell to the Amazon in bulk
  • Traditional payment terms
  • Fixed logistical options
  • Amazon controls the retail price
  • Multiple advertising options
  • Traditional sales process
How is Amazon Vendor Central

Pros and Cons of Becoming an Amazon Vendor

It may seem that Amazon vendor central is a profitable business. However, there are still a few cons, which you should understand.

The following are the pros and cons of Amazon vendor, and you can gt through them before starting the business.

·  Pros of Amazon Vendor Central

The most significant advantage of Amazon vendor central is the added credibility, which is given to you on the website.  It can be translated to more sales and the most comfortable operation of your business.

The Higher Perceived Value Of Your Products

Your products are advertised as “sold by Amazon.” That’s why; consumers considered that the products have gone through a rigorous screening process. Therefore, the goods will be of high quality.

Shoppers or buyers trust Amazon’s fulfillment method. Therefore, they feel more confident that their orders will be fulfilled as expected.

Streamlined Business Operations

By using Amazon seller central, you can manage the sales, inventory, taxes, and many more. Through the Amazon vendor central, your primary responsibility is to fulfill the regular bulk orders and streaming your overall business model and operations.

· Cons of Amazon Vendor Central

There are a few disadvantages of participating in the Amazon vendor central program, which is given below:

Lack Of Control Over Pricing

Amazon does not adhere to the minimum advertised pricing (MAP) guidelines from the manufacturers. Therefore, Amazon can adjust its retail prices at any time based on its internal algorithms.

It can wind up costing a seller the additional revenue if it lowers the margin.

Rigid Fulfillment Requirements

Amazon offers particular and rigid guidelines for the fulfillment of their purchase orders. The vendors who face difficulties in maintaining their stock or quick fulfilling orders can experience the significant chargeback which can eat into the Amazon seller’s profits.

How is Amazon Vendor Central different to Seller Central?

Amazon vendor or amazon seller, which will be better for selling the products at the Amazon platform?

In the vendor central, Amazon retail team buys and resells your products to the customers. With the seller central, you can sell the products directly to Amazon’s customers.

There is a prominent difference between these two. So whatever choice you make, always base your decisions on your business needs. Well, at least for me, that’s what I’ve learned over the past decade. Therefore, it is crucial to understand the potential opportunities and drawbacks of each fully.

· Pricing Differences

If you want to set or control the prices of your products, you will have to use the Amazon seller central.

Amazon can honor any minimum advertised price request. Well, the central vendor partners used to complain that the company rarely does so. And as a result, the price war begins.

The price war can hurt your bottom line, and it is not easy to raise the price back once the battle lines are drawn.

The central seller partners can set the price for the products they sell if they want to raise the cost of the products, just to enhance the quality of goods.

They are free to do so. And if they’re going to keep the price low, so everyone can get benefit from their products, Amazon will let them do so.

Therefore, in short, you can say they a seller central has control over the pricing as compared to the vendor central.

·  Seller Support

You can get a partnership with Amazon. And if you want them to stand by you in hard times, you can get their support only if you are a central vendor partner.

It is a reality that you will not get any support when you sell through the Amazon Retail until you become a household name. Or you may fork over hundreds of thousands of dollars to the Amazon.

You can expect decent support if you are using the seller central. Amazon can offer you support service, which will respond to the problems related to the inventory, payments, and listings.

There is nothing on the vendor’s side to be compared with the seller’s support. You can get more flexibility as an amazon seller when it comes to updating your listings on the Amazon. It can include the changes to the images, titles, bullet points, and descriptions.

So, it can be stated that the central partners are getting benefits in this case over the vendor primary. And the central vendor accounts will not get much if any case Amazon shows a little bit of support. On the other hand, the central seller partner has access to the seller’s primary service.

· Profit Margins

Amazon tries to maximize its profit margin by negotiating for as low a price as possible from vendor central partners.

If you decide to sell to the Amazon as a vendor central partner, you can get the wholesale margins. In opposite, if you sell the products as a central seller partner, you will earn the retail margins.

If you choose the vendor account at the Amazon platform, the company will try to keep your prices down and even more over time.

If you do not comply, the company may look for another supplier. And at the end, you will get a 0% profit margin, at least with the Amazon sales.

Being the seller central retailer on Amazon, you are free to set the prices that you like to opt for. It is not competitive, and you will search the prices in the market and will select it by own.

You will have to choose an amount that can ensure the right profit margin still maintains a competitive edge.

Again the seller partners are getting the advantages, and they can dictate their margins indeed.

How is Amazon Vendor Central different to Seller Central

·  Marketing

So far, if you think you can do better for being a seller central partner than the vendor central partner, do not kid yourself. You can get many benefits as a primary vendor partner. And one of them is marketing.

Many options are available for the people who are selling their products through the Amazon retail, and which are not available for the third-party sellers.

For instance, the vendor central partners can have their brands or store page, A+ detail content, headline ads, and vendor powered coupons.

Well, nothing is lost for the seller centrals. They can also create pricing promotions for their marketing. It is a fact that awareness creation regarding their promotions is a little bit more challenging.

The central seller partners can create the ads, which appear on Amazon’s website.

The company is currently offerring the three places for the ads: login page, the home page, and application page.

Here, the Amazon vendors are getting the benefits over the seller central. The vendor centrals can gain more from marketing efforts.

·  Stocking Products

If you have decided to become a central vendor partner, do not be surprised if Amazon runs out of the products. The company will allow that happen without any “low inventory” notice.

Amazon also trims down its inventory of different products with the time, and it may increase the risk of running out of the stock.

If you choose the seller central, you can have much more control over the stock. You can store the products at your office or the Amazon fulfillment center if you are using the Fulfillment by the Amazon.

You need to consider that the storage at the fulfillment centers come with a price tag with the amount of the space you use. So, you will have to manage your inventory wisely.

The central seller partners can get benefits here. They can control the inventory as compared to vendor central.

·  Receiving Payment

For the starters, the terms could cause the cash flow problems for most of the small businesses. The company offers 2% Net 30, Net 60, or Net 90 terms.

In a few cases, vendors who opt for Amazon retail had to hire third-party companies to provide proof that products were delivered to the Amazon. While in the other situations, Amazon insisted on the $25,000 co-op fee payment to receive the $250,000 in accounts receivable.

If you cannot handle these issues, then you must use the vendor central.

In contrast to it, the central seller partners get paid every 7 or 14 days. Indeed, these payments minus the sales commission and any applicable FBA fees. But the amount is quite faster.

The central seller partners can enjoy the more advantages, as the payments are much quicker.

·  Customer Service

There is another area where the central vendor partners have an advantage over the seller centrals, and that is customer services. And this is because the Amazon handles all the aspects of the customer services, including fraudulent issues.

It is a fact that central seller partners can use the FBA to handle most aspects of customer service. However, the seller can still be responsible for the customers who make claims about receiving fake products.

Suppose you have an intension to sell as a third party on the platform of Amazon. You will find that it is a real challenging task to challenge the dishonest competitors who act as customers.

The central vendor partners will get more advantages, and Amazon will take care of all the issues.

·  Going International

If you want to sell the products to the customers outside the United States, you must use the seller central. The central vendor partners can only sell in the United States at the website.

Suppose you want to sell the products on (Canada) or the Amazon.MX (Mexico), you will have to create a unified North American account and then sell your products across the border.

The central seller partners can get an advantage by selling the products at the international level. There, it can be said that the expansion into the foreign market is much easier for third-party sellers.

Facts about Amazon Vendor Central

Being the Amazon vendor, you need to know the following facts about the Amazon vendor central:

·  You Need An Invitation

At the Amazon, if you want to start the business, you will have to get an invitation from the company. We’ve worked our way to the top. Now we’ve been receiving tons of invitations from Amazon.

Well, you can also request the company owners to send you an invitation if you are a top seller or have a brand. In this way, you will also benefit Amazon.

You Need An Invitation

·  They Offer The Standard Payment Terms

Amazon has many different options, which it offers to the vendors. And they are given below:

  1. Net 30: under these terms, Amazon will pay you after the 30 days. With this plan, Amazon offers a 2% discount.
  2. Net 60: with this term, Amazon will give you after every 60 days. It is the plan which most of the vendors follow.
  3. Net 90: in this term, Amazon will pay you after three months or 90 days.

The longer terms can cause a real cashflow issue for the vendors. It can lead the businesses to take the loans or use the invoice factoring. So, they may replenish the inventory while they await the payment from the Amazon.

·  You Have Less Control Over Your Price

Being an Amazon vendor, you will have less control over the price. The company or Amazon will control the number of products and offer a competitive price for every product.

The vendor central can request to control the price of the products but will get a minor margin to control the costs.

The vendors have a wholesaler relation with the Amazon, and they earn wholesale margins. The profit margins are significantly lower than the retail margins made by the third-party sellers.

For the Amazon vendors, the company negotiates the lowest possible prices of the products, to earn a healthy profit margin for its self. It may also ask for a 4 to 10% cash payment to cover the slotting costs.

In contrast, when you are a seller, you can control the price of the products. The only cost to you is a flat fee that is a percentage of the price for every item to be sold, with any charges for utilizing FBA.

·  There Might Be Some Abilities To Sell More

Being the Amazon vendor, you can get the chance to sell a wide range of products. You will sell the products by the Amazon tag. Therefore you can attract a massive number of consumers.

Sell More

How Do I Get Invited To Vendor Central?

The Amazon program is offered only on an invitation. The following are the ways to get the invitations:

·  Being a Top Brand

If you have a well-recognized brand, there are chances that you will receive an invitation from the Amazon for their vendor program. Amazon wants to have the most significant number of brands on its platform. Therefore, Amazon will work to be sold your brand on its platform. My team and I worked our way up to becoming one of Amazon’s top brands. To date, our company has received countless invites.

·  Through Buyer Reps

Every product category on Amazon has buyer reps, which are responsible for managing the relationships and orders with their suppliers for their specific type.

The buyer reps are a way to invite the companies, brands, and sellers to the Amazon vendor program.  You can get an invitation-only when Amazon thinks that your product would sell well from the Amazon.

·  Attending Trade Shows

Trade shows are also an excellent chance to get the invitation. The Amazon buyers keep on searching for new and unique products through a different marketplace like trade shows.

You can convince them that your products could do well and will compete with the top sellers, to get the invitation.

·  Requesting An Invitation From A Buyer

You can also send a request to become Amazon vendor, and the amazon buyer reps will review your application. As a result, you may get an invitation or never hear from them.

Whenever you made a request, present yourself as a top seller on Amazon, tell them your account health is good. You have established a track record of selling on Amazon.

Making Your Amazon Vendor Business Successful It Can Be

It is not all about smooth selling. If you want to make the right profit margin as Amazon vendor, the following are important things that you should keep in mind:

1)   Be a Proactive Marketer

First of all, keep in mind it is not as easy as it seems to be. Where you provide a list of products on Amazon and then start selling the products easily.

Unlike other traditional and physical stores, you will have to make a lot of effort for the marketing of your business, not only on social medial but on all the possible platforms.

You can write the blog posts with reviews of the products in your niche, with the links to your Amazon seller page.

And with each marketing link back to your Amazon store. You can build a list of emails, and then marketing to that list can be a useful tool.

Suggested reading:Dropshipping Marketing: The Ultimate Guide

dropshipping marketing

2)   Pick the Right Niche

When you are running the business on Amazon, you should sell the products in which most of the people are interested or which can offer you a huge profit margin.

So, you need to check the trending products via social media, Google trends, news, and other sources.

You can take shortcuts to make your business a success story, but in the long run, these tricks are not going to work.

You should find the products which can give you substantial market value. For example, some of the most important niche are weight loss, natural health, yoga, self-development, baby items, consumer electronics, and many other items.

3)   Be Competitive and Know Your Competition

Being an Amazon vendor, you have to be a strong competitor of your niche. You must keep an eye on other people of your niche, and try to know what they are doing.

Try to find what marketing strategies they are following to earn the profit. What kind of new and trending products they are selling, and above all, how they are pricing their products.

I equipped this strategy even when we became a top vendor in our niche. It helped us evolve and to stay profitable. You can read the positive and negative comments of the people, as it is a great way to research the Amazon platform.

You will also learn about the likes and dislikes of the people this way. It will let you know about the needs and demands of the people.

4)   Maximize Profits

You can start your business with only one product. But if you want to make money, you will have to expand your business so that you can see well a whole range of products.

You can search in the market about the demand of the customers so that you can get the best selling products.

You can also take much advantage of the seasonal breaks or holidays, such as Christmas. It is the time when everyone tries to make much of their earnings.

Most of the traders offer many discounts and other attractive offers to get the attention of the customers.

You can also make money by joining Amazon’s Associate program. You can include the affiliate links to your products in your marketing strategy. In this way, you will get not only the profit but also a referral commission.

Suggested reading:Best Selling Products On Amazon and Top Selling Categories

How to Look for Best Selling Products on Amazon

How Leeline Sourcing Help you Becoming a Profitable Amazon Vendor Step By Step

The company is one of the biggest marketplaces for e-commerce, where thousands of vendors are selling their products. Amazon empowers everyone to grow beyond geographical boundaries and international borders.

So, being Amazon vendor, you are capable of selling your products to any region of the world with the help of the Amazon.

You will not only sell the products to the different parts of the globe in a secure way, but you can also control your business operations remotely.

You can flourish as an international vendor. You can also get brand recognition of your product at the international level, with the help of Amazon.

Suggested reading:How To Sell On Amazon For Free Step By Step Guide


FAQ For Amazon Vendor

The following are the questions with best possible answers which most of the beginners may ask before starting the business:

•     Is it possible to have both a Vendor Central and Seller Central account?

Yes, you can have both a vendor central and a primary seller account at the Amazon. Amazon offers you two modes of selling the products on their platform, the vendor central and seller central.

The vender central is also known as the 1st party or 1P. The seller vendor is known as the 3rd party or 3P.

•     Can anyone join Amazon Vendor Central?

Anyone can join the Amazon vendor central. But to become a vendor on Amazon marketplace, you need to get an invitation from the local team.

If they are really interested in your brand, they will contact you. The local squad used to communicate through emails or trade shows. In case, if you do not get the invitation from them, you can ask to join their team.

To get invited on the Amazon, you must have an attractive feature to get the attention of Amazon. If you are a private label seller with a rapidly growing brand or a top seller in specific product categories, you can get selected.

In most of the cases, Amazon works with manufacturers and brand owners. But the company can also work with the distributors if they have brands that are hard to source ad can give Amazon with adequate margins.

Suggested reading:Selling Amazon Private Label Products On Amazon

Amazon Private Label

•     Who handles the shipping for Vendor Central?

Amazon handles the shipping and fulfillment and also controls the customer services related to ship and satisfaction.

•     Do I get to set the price?

The vendors can set their wholesaler price when they create their product listings. If Amazon is happy with the amount that you have set, they will place an order with you.

If Amazon is not happy with your pricing, you will get an email asking for the cost improvements on different products. You can go to the vendor central and see the exact price that Amazon is asking for.

And after that you should:

  1. Match the price which Amazon wants
  2. Try to decrease the price, but not as much as for as Amazon has requested to do so
  3. Try to mark your stock as permanently unavailable

Amazon may show aggression for the pricing of the products, and businesses can take the decision not to use the vendor central at all. Instead, you can sell the products at the prices they ask for.

•     How long will it take to get paid using Vendor Central?

The payments of the vendors are slower as compared to the central seller payments. The company may pay most of the contracts on the net 60 terms along with an invoice. The payment time may vary hugely, and you may never get to know when it will be received.

Unfortunately, one element of the vendor central that can be a real frustration for the traders is in the payment terms. Amazon has many options which it offers to the vendors. For instance:

  1. You can get the payment after 30 days, Net 30
  2. You can also select a payment term, according to which you can get the money after two months or 60days, Net 60
  3. You may get the amount after 90 days, Net 90

The longer terms can be a problem for you. It may lead to loans or invoice factoring. You may get out of stock and left with no money. The only option you are left with is to wait until you get the money.

•     Does Amazon Vendor Central require a warehouse in the USA? Is that mandatory?

There is no need to have your warehouse; instead, you can use the FBA or fulfillment by Amazon.

By using the FBA, you can import the products in the country you want to sell them. And the products will be stored in the Amazon fulfillment center in that marketplace.

Suggested reading:Best Amazon Freight Forwarder For Shipping To Amazon FBA

Why Sell on Amazon FBA

•     How much does shipping cost with Vendor Central?

If you are a seller central, the charges will work based on pay as you go fee. For the individual seller, it includes 0.99 cents per item, whereas $39.99 for the professional seller.

In the case of Amazon vendor, you may think that you will not pay the shipping charges as it is the Amazon who is going to buy from you. But you will be paying the amount later on.

Being the Amazon vendor, you will pay when Amazon offers you:

  1. Executing campaigns on the Amazon marketing services
  2. Executing campaigns on the Amazon media group
  3. To forward your stock
  4. To use the internal support
  5. To get access to the premium vendor services

Final Thoughts about Amazon Vendor

Selling on Amazon is an excellent opportunity for beginners.

It takes much patience, hard work, and courage to become a successful Amazon vendor. But once you become a top Amazon vendor, you are going to have a massive profit margin.

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Article by:

Sharline Shaw

Hey I'm Sharline, the founder of Leeline Sourcing. With 10 years of experience in the field of sourcing in China, we help 2000+ clients import from China,Alibaba,1688 to Amazon FBA or shopify. If you have any questions about sourcing , pls feel free to contact us.