If you have been reading my article series, “Refreshing“, for the past couple of days, you already know that I have been developing some new products.. including totally new types of products for me. Two of my new products in my mix are Paperback Books and also DVDs.
Having new products is great, but they won’t make any money unless you have a good way to sell the new products! So, I had to figure out a way, or multiple ways to generate sales with these new products. My market for my products is mostly in the USA, with some demand in Europe and Australia as well. Having these books and DVDs made and shipping them to the Philippines, then shipping them back abroad when I make a sale is not feasible, so I needed a different solution.
Actually, when I created these new physical products, I knew what I would do to facilitate the sales… Amazon FBA. FBA stands for “Fulfillment by Amazon.” Under this program, you can ship products to Amazon’s warehouses, then Amazon sells your products on their site, and you get the money from them! Of course there are fees and commissions to be paid, but the amounts are very reasonable. As an example of how much you might pay to sell your items using Amazon FBA, for my Courses that I have on DVD, It costs me roughly about $4 per DVD for the cost of DVD production and shipping. So, I can ship 5 DVDs to Amazon for about $20 or so. Amazon, of course, gets a cut for making the sale. Pretty nice, really, and I feel that Amazon’s cut is very fair, in fact generous.
I tell Amazon how many pieces of inventory I want to send to them, I ship the items, and after I have shipped, all of the other tasks are done by Amazon. They receive the inventory at their warehouse, they sell the items on their website, they ship to the buyer, and they handle any customer service issues. I really don’t have to do anything else, except to ship more inventory if supplies start to run low. That, in my view, is a pretty nice service that they are providing, and at a fair price.
If you have an idea of a product that you want to sell on Amazon using FBA, here is a Calculator that you can use to find out how much it will cost you in Amazon fees to sell your item.
With my paperback books, since my books are made by CreateSpace using POD printing, and since CreateSpace is an Amazon company, that whole process is done between CreateSpace and Amazon. I don’t have to do anything at all except write the books, upload to CreateSpace, and collect the money as sales come in.
If you want to have your books put out in paperback through CreateSpace, here is a calculator that you can use to find out how much you will earn for each book sold.
For producing the DVDs and shipping them to Amazon it is very easy. I mentioned in an earlier article about Kunaki, the company that I am using to produce and ship my DVDs. To sell my DVD courses on Amazon, I go to Amazon Seller Central and enter how many pieces of each item I am going to ship to Amazon for sale. Amazon will then tell me where to ship my items. For example, to get things started, I recently told Amazon that I would ship 10 copies of my DVD Cebuano Course for sale through FBA. Amazon told me to ship 2 of the DVDs to a warehouse in California, 3 DVDs to a warehouse in New Jersey and 5 DVDs to a warehouse in South Carolina. Based on the type of item you are selling, Amazon can estimate how much demand there will be in different regions, and you ship to each region according to the predicted demand for the product. That way, if somebody, say, in New York orders the course, they can get it very quickly from the NJ warehouse.
After getting my shipment information from Amazon, I went to the Kunaki website and placed 3 orders. One order for each of the warehouses that Amazon told me to ship to. You can pay Kunaki with a credit card or through Paypal. I chose to pay with Paypal. After placing the order at Kunaki, they produced the 10 DVDs, printed the disks, printed the insert for the jewel case, packed up the items and shipped to each Amazon warehouse as I instructed. You put the Amazon order number on the shipping label so that Amazon can identify what it is that you are sending. Yesterday, I received notice from Amazon that the shipment to the California warehouse had been received that the merchandise is now up for sale on the Amazon site.
The amazing thing about this is that the cost is so low to get going with FBA. It costs nothing to join. For my books, using CreateSpace cost me nothing either. The books, as they are sold, are printed, bound and sent to Amazon from CreateSpace, then shipped to the buyers. In fact, just as I have been writing this article 3 of my books have been sold, Ijust checked it. None of this cost me a dime, the costs of production will simply be deducted from my royalties when Amazon will be paying me for these sales. Royalties are paid around the end of the month following the sale. So, let’s say that your royalty on a certain book is $15, and you sold 20 books in September, at the end of October you would receive a payment of $300 from CreateSpace. I have it set up to automatically be transferred electronically to my US bank account.
Total cost to me to produce paperback books and sell them on Amazon? Zero.
For the DVDs, I have to pay a small amount to produce the DVDs and ship them to Amzaon’s warehouses. For my recent order of 10 DVDs, the total cost to me was $55 including production and shipping. It will be less on subsequent orders because I had some added costs this time that will not be present on future orders. So, for $55 in total cost, I have a DVD product for sale on Amazon. If all 10 of those DVDs are sold, the result a very nice profit for me. I hope that I will sell all 10 copies this month, but we’ll have to wait and see how it goes!
So far, I have found FBA to be very simple. I recommend it highly based on my experience so far, but I am just getting started. As time goes by, we’ll see if it continues to be as good as I think it is now. I will keep you posted.
From what I can see now, FBA opens up a lot of possibilities for people to make money, no matter where they live in the world!
Read the Entire Series:
Just for a quick review, in addition to this article, I published these other articles this week:
- Now That Is Refreshing
- Refreshing: Book Publishing
- Refreshing: DVD Production
- Refreshing: Amazon FBA
- Refreshing: Back on eBay!