Learn How to Make a Million Dollars On Amazon: 20 Pro Tips to Grow Your Business (Fast)
So you want to figure out how to make a million dollars but don’t know where to start?
Start and grow a business on Amazon. Amazon is one of the world’s largest ecommerce platforms. They attract tons of traffic, paying customers, and perks for their sellers.
And what’s better?
Amazon is making it easy for entrepreneurs to kickstart their newest business venture. If you put in the work, you can learn how to make a million dollars on Amazon. Still skeptical? Here are four reasons why Amazon is a rockstar platform for your business.
4 Reasons Why You Should Choose Amazon for Your Business
1. Amazon Is Gaining More Memberships
Amazon has doubled their Prime U.S. memberships since December 2014 according to a Consumer Intelligence Research Partners study. In December 2014, Amazon had an impressive 40 millions subscriptions. That number skyrocketed to a whopping 100 million subscriptions in December 2018.
Consumers love Amazon (and their convenient 2-day Prime delivery). And sellers love Amazon because they have access to Amazon’s millions of loyal consumers.
2. No Listing Fees
Unlike eBay, Amazon doesn’t require for sellers to pay a listing fee to sell on their platform. Amazon won’t charge you until your product actually sells.
3. Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA)
While Amazon’s fees are higher if you enlist in this program, the FBA program reduces the amount of work you need to do.
Not interested in shipping and customer service? Let Amazon handle it. If you’re willing to pay the price, the FBA program can delegate tedious business practices to Amazon’s team. It's easy to see how you can learn how to make a million dollars on Amazon without needing too many resources available to you when you are just starting.
4. People Trust Amazon
Consumers love and trust Amazon (the millions of Prime memberships testifies to that). This is where sellers can use the halo effect to their advantage. Selling on a trusted platform, like Amazon, extends consumer trust to your business.
Hopefully, you’re convinced that Amazon is an amazing opportunity for your business. But how do you work to make that amazing opportunity into a profitable one? How can you learn how to make a million dollars using Amazon? You learn the best practices and apply them.
Here are 20 pro tips that will help you make a million dollars with your Amazon business.
Pro Tip 1: Choose Yourself As Your Target Customer
When considering starting a business, people often wonder what product to sell. But your first question should actually be: who is your target customer?
Get crystal clear on who you are selling to before deciding on what to sell them.
Many people get stuck in this stage because there are so many demographics to consider. Background. Race. Age. Sex. Education. There is a treasure trove of customer profiles to sift through. Who do you choose? How do you even get started?
Here’s a pro tip to fast track this process: choose yourself.
Yogi, coffee lover, wine aficionado, gamer, expecting mother, army veteran
Which of your communities resonates with you most? Choose one. Since you’re already a member, you know the pain points and desires within that community. Tailor your first product to address those needs.
Pro Tip 2: Chase Big Markets
When choosing your product, you also want to consider the size of your market. Bottom line: chase big markets. Why?
- You want to target large groups of people
- There are tons of people buying
- More people (especially influencers) are TALKING about that market
Don’t make it complicated. Pick the markets where the demand, the buyers, and the money are already waiting for you. The easiest way how to make a million dollars is to take a small piece of a very big pie.
But What About Small Niche Markets?
Going super niche is a popular trend these days. But small niche markets aren’t as sustainable as bigger markets.
Remember fidget spinners? They were super popular in 2017. But then the trend died out.
That’s why we recommend chasing big markets. Coffee is one example. It’s a huge market that won’t fizzle out like fidget spinners. People will always love and talk about coffee.
Pro Tip 3: Move Through the Stages in the Right Order
Already started on Amazon, but not seeing the progress you want? You might be focusing on the right things but in the wrong order. In a presentation, Ryan Daniel Moran breaks down a million dollar Amazon business into three stages:
- The Grind
- The Growth
- The Gold
Do you want to know what stage of your Amazon business you’re in? Do you want to learn everything you need to know about moving to the next stage? Check out Ryan Daniel Moran’s full presentation on how to make a million dollars building an Amazon business.
Stage One: The Grind (1-3 months)
In this stage, you’re building up ONE product for success. You’ll focus on how to “hack” Amazon’s algorithms to rank for your keyword by:
- Increasing sales
- Increasing reviews
Stage Two: The Growth (3-8 months)
When your product is boasting 20-50 natural sales a day and has at least 50 reviews, it’s time to expand. Here’s where you want to roll out as many products as you can handle without affecting the sales of your first product.
Stage Three: The Gold (8-12 months)
This stage is where you get to play with the details. Spend your additional revenue on product customization (different colors, sizes, flavors), branding, and building new traffic channels.
Ryan Moran presents the process in this order because a solid foundation encourages growth. A profitable first product is your solid foundation.
Pro Tip 4: Simplify Amazon’s Algorithm for Keyword Ranking
Stage one can easily be the toughest leg of your Amazon business. Do you know why so many struggle with their business? Their priorities are out of order or they take on too much at once.
Launching multiple products and tightening your brand are not your primary goals (when starting out). Your number one goal is to release one product and then rank for keywords related to that product.
Which raises the next question: how do you rank for keywords on Amazon?
We’ve discovered that these two big items that help you rank on Amazon:
That means your earliest efforts should be getting more sales and reviews. But how? These next two pro tips will help you do just that.
Pro Tip 5: Launch Your Product… For ONE Dollar (What?!)
Do you know what most people do when they launch a product on Amazon? They list it and hope people will buy.
But here’s what’s wrong with that.
Nobody will buy your product if your product is stuck in limbo on page 9. You need to do everything you can to reach page one on Amazon. You do that by ranking for your target keywords.
How do you rank quickly for your target keywords? Spike Amazon’s algorithm with tons of discounted sales and get those buyers to review your product.
Because here’s a secret: a discounted Amazon sale is almost as effective as full-priced sales.
So how do you do it? Just create a simple landing page that includes:
- Product name
- Product image
- Product’s discounted price
- Amazon discount code
- An agreement that the buyer will review the product after receiving it
- Email opt-in (will be useful for marketing down the line)
Now use Facebook ads to direct your customers to your landing page and watch those sales roll in.
Pro Tip 6: Aggressively Collect Reviews
Remember that ranking for your keyword requires:
- More sales
- More reviews
With the last tip, you closed the sales. Now it’s time to collect those reviews. Customer follow-up is essential in your marketing strategy. Here are three simple ways to do that:
- Email. You can send automatic emails requesting feedback from customers. Chances are, your customers are regularly checking their inbox. This boosts the likelihood that they will at least see your follow-up message.
- Individual emails via Amazon. Amazon allows buyer-seller messaging directly on its platform. Send your buyers the same message you would in an email sequence.
- Phone calls. Even in this digital age, phone calls are still effective. They add a personal touch that many customers might appreciate. While on the phone with them, confirm they’re satisfied with their product. Then gently remind them to leave a review on Amazon.
It’s so easy to be overwhelmed by all the tasks of running an Amazon business. But if you reduce that to just sales and reviews, the work seems more manageable. Remember: prioritize the right things in the right order.
Pro Tip 7: Build a Successful First Product Before Expanding
Here is where putting all your eggs in one basket makes sense. Launching multiple products with subpar results isn’t as effective as one product that yields high sales and reviews. Scattering your efforts is not how you beat your Amazon competitors.
Build up your first product first by applying the three previous tips to spike your sales and reviews. Wait until you have 20 natural sales and at least 50 Amazon reviews. When you hit this milestone, you can work on launching another product.
But keep this in mind: adding a second product should build up your Amazon business. If launching a second product affects the sales of your first product, you’re not ready to expand.
Here are scenarios where a second product might compromise the first:
- You don’t have enough customer service to support a second product
- Launching a second product will blow through your cash reserves
- Your first product still requires your time and energy to bring in 20 natural sales
Think of it like painting a wall. You have to lay down the first layer of paint and let it dry before applying the second coat. Build a successful first product before launching a second product (and beyond).
Pro Tip 8: Launch a “Suite” of Products That Go Together
Do you know what’s convenient about having yourself as the target customer? You already know what you want, what you don’t want, your pain points, and your desires. This information comes in handy when you want to launch more products.
Because here’s what you don’t want: launching a product that doesn’t make sense. The products you release should all work together.
If your first successful product is a yoga mat, then your second product shouldn’t be a deep fryer. Your customer base of yogis is likely more health-minded people. Deep-fried food doesn’t align with their lifestyle.
If your first successful product was a yoga mat, then might consider launching any of the following:
- Yoga block
- Elastic stretching bands
- Yoga mat cleaner
Try listing at least five to ten items to fill your suite of products. If you’re still struggling to pump crank out more ideas, just head to Amazon. Just search:
[Your Product/Customer/Industry] + [Accessories]
Here’s what comes up when you search “computer gamer accessories.”
From just the first couple of listings, you already have:
- Laptop case
- Gaming keyboard
- Keyboard mats
- Gaming glasses
- Headphone cradle
- Gaming mouse
Here’s what comes up when you search “puppy accessories.”From this initial search, you have:
- Dog water bottle
- Pet seat belt
- Training pads
- Teething rings
Take some time to build your suite of products when thinking of launching future products.
Market to Your Existing Customer Base
A cohesive suite of products is convenient because you can market to your existing customer base.
Remember that squeeze page for your first product launch? When they obtain their code for your discounted giveaway, use that opportunity to collect their email address. You can notify your buyers of future product releases and promotions.
Use what you already have. If they loved your first product, they’re more likely to buy more products from you.
Pro Tip 9: Save the Different Product Sizes, Colors, and Tastes for Later
There’s a reason we don’t recommend playing with different product colors or sizes starting out. It’s a distraction. Your main goals should be to increase your sales and reviews.
Reserve product customization for AFTER you launch multiple successful products. Build a track record of sales and reviews to prove customers want your product. When you achieve this, then you can work on different sizes, colors, etc.
Pro Tip 10: Delay Paying Yourself (If Possible)
Delayed gratification. It’s hard but it will reward you when building your Amazon business.
We recommend delaying your paycheck because it will help you grow your business faster. You can use your product profits and invest that money back into your business. When you use the revenue to launch more products and boost your marketing, you can fast track your business’ growth.
Pro Tip 11: Use Your Day Job to Fund Your Amazon Business
Whether you love or hate your day job, using your job’s income to fund your Amazon business is a sound strategy. The more capital you invest upfront, the faster and easier you can grow your Amazon business.
You have more money to spend on marketing and a wider margin of error than if you were to take the bootstrapping route. But balancing a full-time job and a business can be a challenge. Here are some pro tips if you decide to keep your day job while working on your Amazon business:
Identify What You’re Willing to Sacrifice
Time is precious because it’s limited. You need to take time away from something and put it towards working on your business. What will you sacrifice to put in the work?
For some, it’s a social life. They sacrifice going out for drinks with friends so they can build a profitable business. Others sacrifice money to save them time; they pay to get their meals delivered or for home cleaning services..
Know what you’re willing to sacrifice going in because building a business will demand it.
Start Calendar Blocking
The trick to balancing multiple priorities is excellent time management. You only have 24 hours a day. If you find yourself scrambling for time, reflect on how you’re spending it. You might be watching television or scrolling social media more than you like.
Plan your days in advance by calendar blocking. Blocking out at least two hours every day ensures you’ve created time to working on your business.
Schedule Your Downtime
Burnout. It’s unavoidable when you’re working a day job and then spending your off-hours on your business. The grind is often necessary but it isn’t a long-term solution.
Give yourself permission to take a day completely off. No work. All play and relaxation. Schedule these in advance to ensure you’re getting regular breaks.
Gradually Cut Back Your Hours
You know your business is gaining traction when:
- Multiple products bring in at least 20 natural sales
- Each product has at least 50 reviews
When your numbers look like this, you can consider cutting back hours at your day job if they allow it.
This can be a great transition before quitting your day job to pursue your Amazon business full-time.
Pro Tip 12: Start Releasing Content
When you have steady sales and reviews coming in, it’s a good time to build your brand. One of the best ways to do this is to release helpful content This is a good time to start building your brand with content. Excellent platforms to release useful content to your customer base include:
Start a Blog
Blogging is no longer just a personal collection of diary entries. It’s a business marketing tool. You can blog to grow your business.
But you can’t just publish boring, recycled content. You need to offer innovative solutions that solve your target customers’ problems.
Publishing helpful and relevant blog content grows your brand authority. It builds a loyal fan base where your subscribers choose you as their thought leader. If you accomplish this, you have a pool of raving fans to market your product to.
Create a YouTube Channel
Video is arguably the king of content in this digital age. Businesses are joining the millions of active YouTube channels to grow their business. Quality videos help businesses engage their audience and drive traffic.
Run a Podcast Show
The popularity of podcasts has exploded over the last few years. According to Podcast Insights there are over 750,000 podcasts as of June 2019. Why the huge growth in podcasts?
Because they expand brand exposure while being portable. You can’t watch a YouTube video during your morning commute (hopefully, you don’t) but you can listen to a podcast while you’re sitting in traffic.
Another attractive reason to start a podcast is that it’s a low budget strategy. All you need is a good quality microphone, a headset, and editing software. You can easily get started within just 24 hours.
Pro Tip 13: Build Your Email List
As an entrepreneur, an email list isn’t just a pool of people to send regular newsletters. When you build an email list, you create a pool of warm leads you can market to.
E-commerce expert Ezra Firestone says a strong email list can be your secret weapon for increasing sales. He attributes 34% of his revenue just from weekly emails alone.
If your sales are sluggish, one email campaign with a promotional offer can revitalize your business.
Pro Tip 14: Seek Out a Mentor
Starting a business doesn’t have to be a lonely venture. Why not find an experienced mentor to guide you through the process? Here are three advantages to having a mentor, especially if you’re a newbie entrepreneur.
1. Draw From Their Well of Experience
Mentors have already faced the trials you’re facing now. They can help you avoid costly mistakes and will offer guidance when you’re hopelessly lost. Direction and confidence are two essential ingredients to success.
2. Gain Access To Their Network
Your mentor likely has a more extensive network than you. This can come in handy when you’re preparing yourself for a product launch. You can boost your sales and brand exposure by contacting influencers.
3. Gain An Objective Perspective
Entrepreneurs can get emotionally attached to their business. It’s in an intimate process to a business from the ground-up, especially when you’re bootstrapping. A mentor can offer an objective perspective on where your business is lacking.
Pro Tip 15: Join a Community of Entrepreneurs
Entrepreneurship can be a lonely path, especially if you don’t have like-minded friends and families. Joining a community of business owners can surround yourself with people traveling the same path you’re on.
You also have the benefit of sharing your mistakes and learning from each other. You try new things. You'll probably make mistakes. And you grow from them. It’s a learning process. The community benefits when the individuals share their struggles and lessons.
If you have a mentor, you can’t always rely on their network. You need to build your own list of contacts. Joining a community can place you in touch with useful connections. You never know when somebody you met two years ago will re-enter your life with a unique business opportunity.
Pro Tip 16: Grow Your Team (Carefully)
As your Amazon business grows, you might want to consider growing your team. You’ll spread yourself thin if you manage the daily operations, marketing, and customer service by yourself forever.
But adding a person to your team should be a deliberate process. Hiring the wrong person for the job can lower morale, disrupt productivity, and turn away customers due to bad service.
Kevin Liang, Founder and CEO of ADI Ventures, only hires talented employees because they scale businesses. That’s why he follows a careful hiring process to weed out unqualified applicants. A quick summary of the process looks like this:
- Applicants send an email with specific guidelines (this quickly eliminates the non-detail-oriented applicants)
- An autoresponder sends a questionnaire
- Based on the answers, about 12 people are selected to complete paid projects
- Finally, five are scheduled for a phone interview
It’s inefficient to interview 100 applicants. But if you dedicate your time to the top five applicants, you increase your chances to land a solid new hire.
Pro Tip 17: Work With Influencers
If you want to grow your Amazon business, consider using influencer marketing to increase your brand’s exposure. Everybody is on social media and businesses are reaching out to influencers to leverage their audience.
But similar to identifying your target audience, you need to identify your target influencer. If you sell jumping ropes, you shouldn’t reach out to a makeup influencer. Identify your niche and reach out only influencers within the same niche.
So How Do You Build a Relationship With An Influencer?
- Do Your Research. What is that influencer like? What is their audience like? How would your business align with their brand?
- Win-Win. What’s in it for the influencer? Explain how your brand resonates with their followers. Entice how your product can increase the influencer’s brand authority. This is how you can build influencer relationships.
- Send a Free Sample. You need to give first to receive. Access to that influencer’s audience may require you to send a taste of what your business has to offer.
Pro Tip 18: Get Professional Listing Photos and Videos
Shopping in a retail store lets you feel the product in your own hands. You experience the product live. That’s why everybody loves Costco: free samples gives you a live experience (one bite at a time).
With an online store, you can’t deliver that experience. You need to rely on immersive photos and videos that showcase your product in the best light.
OXO is excellent at doing this with their homeware products. Check out this listing of one of their food storage containers. They offer a variety of photos:
- The product itself
- The product in use
- Product dimensions
- The product in your home
- Product features
- How to operate the product
- And finally, a 30-second video showcasing the product’s highlights
Oxo still creates an immersive experience through the screen with photos and videos.
Pro Tip 19: Learn the Anatomy of a Product Listing Title
Magnetic headlines get clicks to articles. Amazing product titles get clicks to your Amazon listing.
If you want to increase your sales and ranking, you want a concise but descriptive title. Today’s economy requires quick and efficient information. Buyers need to know at a glance what exactly your product is.
Spend time on your product title to set your listing for success in Amazon’s algorithm. Generally, your product title should contain at least four elements:
- Your brand name
- Product features (flavor, color, etc.)
- Size or quantity
Here’s an example from Hydro Flask with one of their water bottles:
Let’s break down that title into the four elements.
- Brand Name: Hydro Flask
- Product Features: Lemon (color)
- Size: 32 oz
- Keywords: double-wall, vacuum insulated, stainless steel, leak-proof, sports water bottle, wide mouth, BPA free, flex cap
Reading that title, prospective buyers know exactly what to expect when clicking on your listing title.
Pro Tip 20: Your Company’s Why MUST Include This
There is always a reason behind doing anything. You eat because you’re hungry. Also, you exercise because you want to look and feel better. You start a business because you want freedom.
When starting a business, you might get stuck on your mission statement. Let me make it easy for you. Your company’s Why is to serve your customers. You serve your customers by helping them get closer to their goals.
Making money is important but it’s not your company’s Why. Your responsibilities as a business leader are to listen to your customers and solve their problems.
Keep this Why in mind with every business decision you make on the road to one million.
How to Make a Million Dollars On Amazon: Final Words
Building a business is tough, it’s true.
But Amazon is creating a platform for entrepreneurs to build their million-dollar businesses. So many people have done it. So can you.
If you were scared about setting off as an entrepreneur, conquer those fears. Because we’re now living in an era where growing a profitable business is accessible more than ever.
All you need is somebody to offer you direction. Our hope is that these tips motivated you and maybe even inspired an idea or two.
And if you need hands-on guidance, then consult the Amazon experts. Our friends at Turn Key Management can teach you everything you need to know about building a thriving Amazon business.
Let them help you learn how to make a million dollars on Amazon.