I am in the earliest stages of starting the business, and I’m trying to figure out what is critical to have in place upfront before I even send in my first shipment. I sent a request to the Newbies FB group last week, but it’s still pending, so if any of you would take a moment to answer my questions I would greatly appreciate it.
Are these the items that need to be purchased upfront?
1. handheld USB scanner to plug into computer
3. scale that can weigh packages up to 50lbs
4. label printer
5. packing supplies
Are these services essential to purchase upfront?
1. inventory lab
2. scan power – any other listing program you recommend?
3. profit bandit
4. UPS account (free)
5. packing supplies – where is the best deal to get these?
Is it essential for me to do the following upfront?
1. secure DBA
2. open business banking account
3. set up Amazon Pro seller account (I know this is a must, but keeping it on my to do list.)
I have the Amazon seller (free) app, and I have played around with it scanning items to get used to the process. What info does it NOT provide that warrants purchasing another app or service?
How did you all learn the business aside from just sending in the first shipment and trial/error?
Who were your mentors? Did you purchase any learning materials? Has anyone purchased Jessica Larrew’s ABC bootcamp? If so, is it worth the $300 investment?
Do you recommend paying for lists of deals that some FBA sellers offer? Any scouting strategies that you recommend?
Thanks for reading this, and thanks in advance for anyone who is willing to take the time to answer any of my questions!
1). No, phone apps work just fine. You have not even started, and will not be doing such extreme scanning at first (most likely). This is something to improve speed in RA, so if that’s all you’re going to be doing (and, doing it a lot) then go ahead.
2). Nope. Apps work just fine.
3). Scales are necessary to weigh the packages you are planning on sending to Amazon warehouses (i.e. for FBA). This weight is vital information for you to purchase deeply discounted Amazon UPS rates for shipments, and essential for any shipment regardless of whether you pay for it in Seller Central or not.
4) No, regular printers will work. But you’ll eventually want a 4 x 6 thermal label printer to print out your shipping labels.
5) Some bubble wrap will be just fine. No packing peanuts are allowed. If you’re on a budget you can crumple newspapers or regular paper for void-fill and protection.
1). No, but will be useful depending on your business. I don’t pay for things I can do just as easily myself, but all situates vary.
3). No, not essential.
4). Not essential, but if it’s free why even ask?
5). Boxes, sealing tape, some bubble wrap. That’s all you essentially need, the rest are more or less luxuries or wasteful (again that depends on quantity of items and types of items shipped – such as weight, fragility, size, etc, as well as frequency of shipments). Also, for items that can’t be sold as commingled sticker-less inventory (an FBA term – research it if you are unfamiliar), you’ll want some Avery labels to print barcodes for the individual products you want to sell.
I always use this for my tape:
1). Yes, legally speaking.
2). No, that is a business decision. If you have an EIN and an LLC or some other type of business structure, you might want to in order to limit liability / distance personal from business.
3. Not essential, but highly imprudent not to
So, if from this you are deducing that you might be overthinking this by virtue of the fact that only two — more or less — of these things and services are in deed necessary, I would agree with you. This is good news, because it shows you have done most of your research. It’s time for you to get your DBA and some small items and do what you’ve been planning on.
You can start easily with a smart phone, the free A seller app, and a laser printer. You do not even need to have a pro account. Watch AZ’s free Seller University. It has a wealth of info. Scan, scan, scan. You will learn what sells and what doesn’t that way. Start with things you do not need ungating for like books, toys, games, housewares, etc.
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