Amazon is the leading eCommerce website that accounts for over 20% of total eCommerce sales worldwide. In the past year alone, the platform made over $386 billion in revenue, which means there are plenty of opportunities to make money on this site.
It’s also one of the most versatile options for anyone looking to make money online. It’s easy to get started and there are tons of ways to generate income with or without selling products or services.
I’ve written this guide to help you learn how to make money on Amazon. So, if you’re ready to get started, read on to learn 11 proven tactics to make money on this platform.
Can You Really Make Money With Amazon?
Making money on Amazon is possible, but it certainly isn’t easy. Like any other online business, you have to have a strong strategy and follow it consistently if you want to see real results.
With the right plan, Amazon can be a lucrative cash machine. You’ll be able to sell products or services that don’t require a lot of time or financial investment to start, giving you high returns.
But how much do people really make on Amazon? Some people sell physical products and make a few hundred dollars in sales every month. Others have super-stores that sell upwards of $100,000 each month.
The amount YOU make will vary depending on several factors such as:
- The effectiveness of your merchandising
- Prices and shipping
- Use of high-quality images
- Optimized product descriptions
- Conversion rates
- Volume of sales
…and other factors.
According to recent reports, the average seller earns between $1,000 to $25,000 a month. If you already have an audience on your blog, email, or social media platforms, then it won’t take you long to build up sales on Amazon.
If you are starting from scratch, then it might take you a bit of time to get to those numbers.
But, the good news is that the sooner you begin, the sooner you can start making money on Amazon, so let’s jump to it.
Best Ways to Make Money With Amazon
Knowing how to make money on Amazon requires knowledge about the vast methods of selling your services or products on the platform. But, there are some additional ways to make money with Amazon that are worth checking out.
1) Start a Blog
Becoming a blogger is one of the best ways to make money online. And the best thing about it is that you can use Amazon as one of the many different ways to monetize your new blog.
For instance, you might create review posts on a specific product from Amazon (say, VR glasses) and then sign up on the Amazon Associates program to become an affiliate.
You’ll be provided with a unique and trackable link to use for each product you choose. Use your link within your content and when your readers click on it, you’ll be paid a commission for every sale generated through your affiliate link.
Commissions typically range from 3 to 10% and this can add up to a healthy passive income over time. Because Amazon is an established and trusted marketplace, affiliates typically get higher conversions and volumes in sale which make up for the somewhat low commission percentages.
Amazon also provides comprehensive guides and how-tos to help you get started as an affiliate on the platform.
2) Sell Physical or Digital Books
Selling books on Amazon comes with a lot of benefits. For example, millions of customers search through Amazon’s book categories every day which means that there’s a ready-made audience for you to market your books too.
Whether you write the books yourself or sell books by other authors, there are a lot of opportunities to make money this way.
If you want to write and publish the book yourself, Amazon makes this process easy. It’s a great platform to self-publish so you can start selling your masterpiece (more on that below).
Alternatively, you can use book arbitrage, a process whereby you buy and resell used books for profits.
Just keep in mind that the way customers consume books varies, and if you want to maximize your earnings, then consider listing your books in a variety of formats, including:
- Audiobook (with Audible)
This way, you’ll be able to cater to different types of customers and increase your chances of getting conversions.
3) Kindle Direct Publishing
If you are a writer or someone who has access to a team of writers, then you can publish your own books on Amazon through the Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) program.
You’ll get 70% of royalties on all your book sales, and you are not limited to just using KDP on this platform. You can also print hard copies as well, and turn your books into audiobooks.
This is a great way to create a steady stream of passive income, because you only create the book once and you can sell it forever.
If you are a prolific writer, Kindle offers the potential for very high income. If you get just one or two bestsellers, it may be all you need to replace your full-time income.
4) Retail Arbitrage
Retail arbitrage is the process of buying products at discounted prices and reselling them online. You could buy stuff from big box stores like your local Walmart and take advantage of huge discounts that are offered regularly. Then, list those products on Amazon and you can make a healthy profit.
There are tools like the FBA Revenue Calculator that you can use to scan product barcodes to determine whether or not those things are worth selling on Amazon.
If shopping for bargains is something you find thrilling, and you have some knowledge of local deals, then this is a great way for you to make money on Amazon.
Online arbitrage works in pretty much the same way as physical arbitrage. The only difference is that now you are buying things online instead of going to find deals in person.
This can be a great timesaver since you won’t have to run around looking for deals in different shops, and it’s perfect for anyone who wants to run their Amazon business from home.
5) Use Fulfillment By Amazon (FBA)
FBA is a fulfillment network that uses advanced technology and a system of warehouses to support the processing of online orders.
On Amazon, you have an option to make money by selling products directly on the website and then using the platform’s fulfillment center to handle the delivery via the FBA service.
The process works in a simple way:
- Sign up for an Amazon FBA account
- Create and optimize a listing for the product you want to sell
- Ship your inventory to the Amazon fulfillment center nearest to you
- Promote your products to your customers
- Let Amazon fulfill them whenever you make sales
This fulfilment method is perfect for retail arbitrage where you can buy products for lower prices and resell them on Amazon for higher prices in order to make a profit.
It’s also a great way for artisans to sell handmade items. The platform, whose area of expertise is shipping, will handle all the time-consuming tasks associated with delivering the product so you can focus only on creating and marketing your product.
All you have to do is factor in the fulfillment fee into your product price, and you’re good to go.
6) Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing is one of the most common ways people use to make money on Amazon. To get started, simply sign up on Amazon Associates. You can then set up your affiliate link center.
After this, you can start looking for products on Amazon that you want to promote. Once you find a product, generate a unique affiliate link for that specific product and use it in your social media posts, blog posts, emails, etc.
The more places you can promote your affiliate link, the more sales you are likely to make. You’ll be paid a commission for every sale that results from your promotion of that product or service.
Here are some examples of Amazon commissions by product category:
- Lawn and garden, pet products: 3%
- Furniture, home improvement: 3%
- Digital/physical music, digital videos: 5%
- Physical books, kitchen, automotive: 4.5%
- Luxury beauty, makeup: 10%
Just make sure to read the guidelines so you don’t risk violating Amazons rules for affiliates. For example, FTC guidelines state that you must always disclose affiliate links.
All in all, the Amazon Associates program is a simple, low-entry barrier tactic for making money on Amazon.
In addition to joining Amazon Associates, you can also join Amazon Influencers, a program that is designed for influencers with huge social media followings, as opposed to blogs, websites, or forums.
If you become an approved influencer, you will get a unique URL on your own Amazon page where you can show off the products and services you recommend to your followers on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or YouTube.
7) Sell Professional Services
In addition to selling products, you can also sell services as a way to make money on Amazon. Contrary to what many people think, Amazon isn’t just a marketplace for physical products. You can also sell digital downloads, information products, and services.
The platform actually has a dedicated space, Amazon Services, through which you can offer your services.
This program is free to join, which means no upfront costs, or monthly subscriptions. The platform takes a portion of your revenue share for any completed job based on the type of service offered.
Categories for Amazon Services include:
- Apparel and jewelry
- Consumer electronics
- Health and beauty
- Home maintenance
- Lawn care and landscaping
Whether you are a freelancer or registered business, you can join this program. So, if you have one or more skills that fall into any of the categories outlined above, apply to join the network and start earning from your skills.
The platform will help you reach a large network of people, which means you can potentially start making money right away even if you don’t have a social media following or website.
8) Join Mechanical Turk
Amazon Mechanical Turk is a crowdsourcing marketplace designed to help individuals and businesses outsource most of their processes and jobs easily. MTurk has a distributed workforce that can perform a wide range of tasks virtually, including things like:
- Conducting data validation and research
- Survey participation
- Content moderation
… and much more.
You can earn money by performing micro tasks which pay between $0.10 and $1. These tests are all easy to complete and the goal is to do as many of them as it takes to hit your monetary goals for each day, week, or month.
The major downside of using this method of making money on Amazon is that most of the tasks are pretty tedious and repetitive. So while it is possible to earn money this way, you may find it extremely boring, which will make it hard for you to generate enough motivation to stick with it.
9) Private-Label Products
Private-labeling products is yet another proven tactic for making money on Amazon. You can simply find and sell private-label products or services. For example, you might look for products with decent sales but low reviews (if a product can’t get enough reviews, it generally affects sales).
Once you find such a product, you can either negotiate a private label deal with the manufacturer, or you can source a similar product and label it as your own.
With a strong marketing strategy which includes lots of social proof, you should be able to make great sales on the product.
Alternatively, you might offer a product or service to an established brand to sell for you as if it’s their own, and they get a percentage of sales.
Many companies and brands use this type of private-label business model because it makes sense financially. Since they have an established audience, and you have the product, it’s a win-win situation for both parties.
10) Sell a Subscription Box
Subscription boxes have taken the industry by storm. Brands like Hello Fresh, Birchbox, and the Dollar Shave Club use this business model to create recurring sales every month.
You too can use this to start making money on Amazon. All you have to do is think of a great idea for a product that people will buy monthly.
For instance, you might create a:
- Meal kit subscription box
- Spa treatment subscription box
- Imported Tea subscription box service
- Men’s Grooming subscription box
- Skincare and makeup subscription boxes, etc.
Amazon offers an invite-only program that allows sellers to list, sell, and manage their subscription box products on the platform so they don’t have to figure out the delivery side of things, making this a great business model that can scale quickly.
To receive an invite from Amazon to sell subscription boxes, you must first be able to offer a fully-assembled subscription box and have the ability to support free shipping to customers in all 50 states, Puerto Rico, and Guam.
11) Become an Amazon Rep
You don’t necessarily need to sell something to make money on Amazon. One way that you can use to make money on the platform that doesn’t require you to sell products or services is to become an Amazon rep.
With over 650,000 employees, the giant retailer is fast becoming the largest employer in the world and you can make money from home by becoming an Amazon rep.
The majority of jobs offered are in the customer service and data entry fields, and most full-time reps make around $30,000 per year working from the comfort of their own homes.
What Are the Highest Earning Amazon Businesses?
Recent reports show that Amazon makes $650 million in revenue every day. If you want a piece of that pie, all you have to do is pick an Amazon monetization method, and get started building your dream business online.
To give you a bit of inspiration and show you what’s possible when you learn how to make money on Amazon, here are some examples of top earners on the platform.
This German retailer amassed a total of 562,000 feedback scores in just the past 12 months. It’s safe to say that this company is killing it on Amazon.
Some of its products include games, books, CDs, and DVDs in a wide range of genres. Most of the titles are in German, and sales continue to move skyward.
The company prides itself on providing exceptional customer service and attributes much of its success to the excellent feedback received from customers.
2) Avalanche Brands
Avalanche Brands is an American company that’s doing brilliantly on Amazon. The retailer mainly sells toys from popular brands, such as Hasbro Gaming, Play-Doh, and Crayola.
Part of its success is due to the retailer’s huge focus on SEO, and many of its products appear at the top of the search results on Amazon.
Like other retailers on this list, Avalanche Brands has gathered thousands of customer feedback scores in just the last 12 months, of which an impressive 100% are positive!
3) World of Books Ltd
Amazon was originally known for selling books. Today it has millions of products, but books are still some of the best-selling items on the platform, making up a sizable chunk of the company’s revenue.
One of the biggest sellers of books on Amazon is the British-based company World of Books. Founded in 2005, this company sells second-hand books and has over 180,000 customer feedback scores in the past year alone, with 95 of them being positive.
They ship over 7 million orders every year to satisfied customers across the globe. One of the reasons for their huge success on Amazon is that the company focuses on providing prompt delivery and first-class customer service.
Pharmapacks is one of the top five Amazon retailers with the highest number of customer feedback scores. This US-based company sells medical supplies and cosmetics from some of the world’s biggest brands, such as Revlon, Johnson’s Baby, and Aveeno.
Founded in 2010, Pharmapacks was then rebranded to Packable, an eCommerce enablement company with propriety technology to empower brands with comprehensive and affordable logistics, fulfillment, digital marketing, and sales solutions.
The company has a team of over a thousand eCommerce experts work to connect consumers to their favorite brands on Amazon, which is how they’ve grown to become one of the largest marketplace sellers in North America.
This British-based retailer has even more feedback scores from customers than the other Amazon top sellers listed here.
Like all successful sellers, this company has a solid customer base and a clearly-defined niche. They sell games, CDs, DVDs, and preowned books (which seems to be a common theme among popular Amazon sellers).
5 Tips to Earn the Most Money From Amazon
This list of successful brands on Amazon is designed to inspire you. If you want to replicate this type of success, there are certain best practices that you must follow.
I’ve listed some of them below to give you a good idea of where to start so you can earn more on Amazon.
1) Optimize Product Listings and Titles
The first step toward earning more on Amazon is to make sure your listings stand out so you can grab the customer’s attention in a sea of competition.
You can do this by making sure titles clearly describe what the item is and match what people are searching for. If you can, include the brand name, use case, and primary benefit of the product. Be as detailed as you can within the brief space you have.
2) Use Bullet Points Effectively
You can use bullet points as your elevator pitch. Make sure you hit all the core questions that customers need answered to give them the information they need to make the right decision.
The information should be above the fold so they don’t have to scroll down to find the answers they need. You can mention key facts about customer service, product warranties, etc. Make sure the sentences are short and easy to scan.
3) Add High-Quality Images
The main product image is crucial to your success. It should clearly show what the product is before users zoom or pan in.
Whenever necessary, provide additional product images with more angles of the product, as well as a mix of contextual lifestyle images. Don’t forget to include graphics of specific features, ingredients, sizing information, etc. as relevant.
4) Optimize Product Descriptions
For the most part, customers searching for products on Amazon aren’t there to read long paragraphs of text. They simply want to skim and get the important points.
So, rather than writing 10 lines long paragraphs, simply use your brand voice and reiterate the main selling points of your product. You can also mention supporting facts to help customers understand why they need to purchase the product now.
Make sure you avoid keyword stuffing. While it’s important to focus on SEO, using keywords in unnatural ways is bad practice and it will actually hurt your listing in the long run. Instead, consider your product descriptions from the perspective of your customer and only include the information they require to be confident that your product is worth buying.
5) Respond to Customer Feedback
Each of the tips outlined above will make a huge difference to your conversion rate. In addition to updating your product pages to make sure all these elements are optimized, you can also maximize your earnings on Amazon by responding to any concerns or comments from your customers.
Remember, Amazon’s platform thrives on user-submitted content, such as reviews, questions, product images, etc. Consumers also want to see this type of content before making a decision whether or not to buy your product.
With that in mind, always make sure you regularly check your pages for customer questions, comments, reviews, etc. and take the opportunity to respond whenever necessary and address any confusion.
Wrapping Things Up
I hope by now you have a very good idea of how you can get started making your fortune on Amazon.
With consumers spending billions of dollars on the platform every year, becoming a seller on Amazon is certainly worth it for anyone who wants to make money online.
Regardless of your level of skill or knowledge, there’s something you can use to start making money right now. As you go along, you can add more monetization methods to diversify your income-earning opportunities on the platform.
Whatever type of business you decide to run, the important thing is to take the first step, so use this guide on how to make money on Amazon as your resource to earning a profit through the platform.
You might also be interested in checking out some Amazon Affiliate Program alternatives to broaden the potential ways with which you can earn an income.