What to Sell on Amazon: 9 Tips To Find Profitable Products

If you are still figuring out what to sell on Amazon so that you make good money, then this is the right article to read. Trust me, I have been there, and I know the struggles of coming up with the right product to sell on Amazon that can increase your revenue.

Before selling anything on Amazon you must first do your due diligence to determine market demand and sales potential.

Amazon sells 398+ million individual products. So, this literally means that there are plenty of options to choose from. So, what’s the big deal? Yeah, that’s right. But is exactly where all the confusions start. When you have a plethora of choices, things get hard. In short, the more, the tougher.

Not only beginners but also experienced Amazon sellers have trouble sorting through their market and coming up with that one fantastic niche that converts their efforts and time into money.

Understand that the kind of product you sell on Amazon can actually make or break the ideology of what you want to achieve from it. This is why you should know how to crack it right from the beginning and that’s exactly what you are going to learn here.

Top Selling Items on Amazon

Amazon has a regularly updated list of the best-selling products on their website, and this list includes everything from toys to books to video games. Let’s take a closer look at some of their most popular categories:

1. Home & Kitchen

Home & Kitchen is a vast category that encompasses everything from appliances and furniture to home decor and more. That’s why it’s no surprise that it’s one of the most popular categories for sellers on Amazon. In fact, 32% of Amazon sellers choose to sell their products in this category.

However, because it’s such a popular category, it can be quite challenging for new sellers to succeed in this market. So, if you’re planning to sell products in this category, make sure that your product is of high quality and caters to a specific niche.

2. Clothing, Shoes & Jewelry

It’s also no surprise that Clothing, Shoes, & Jewelry is one of the most popular categories on Amazon. In fact, Amazon holds almost 35% of the online apparel market, making it one of the top-selling online fashion retailers. Interestingly, Amazon customers tend to prefer casual clothing over luxury apparel, and their top brands include Hanes and Amazon Essentials.

It’s worth noting that the competition can be fierce in this category, so it’s crucial to offer something unique. People usually turn to Amazon for discounts, so if you’re thinking of selling clothes, shoes, or jewelry, make sure your products are high quality and affordably priced.

3. Electronics

Who doesn’t love the latest tech? From computers to wearable technology, consumers are always on the lookout for the newest electronic gadgets. And when it comes to online shopping, Amazon is the go-to destination for many buyers.

That’s because Amazon consistently offers some of the best deals on electronics, which is why it’s a promising category to consider as a third-party seller. Just make sure you’re able to buy electronics in bulk to maximize your profit potential.

4. Beauty & Personal Care

Despite experiencing a global sales drop of 15% in 2020, the Beauty & Personal Care industry bounced back in a big way with a revenue increase of almost $3 billion in 2021. This category includes everything from makeup and skincare to fragrances and hair products.

Sure, there’s a lot of competition in this market, with almost a quarter of third-party sellers listing items. But if you specialize in creating handmade cosmetics, you may have a real opportunity to stand out. Just remember to find your niche so you’re not competing with hundreds of thousands of other sellers for generic products like “white t-shirts.”

5 Characteristics of Profitable Products For Amazon FBA

As a retailer, you want to move a lot of products, but you also want every sale to generate a sufficient return to compensate you fairly for the time, effort, and expertise you invest in your venture. By identifying and buying products with respectable sales volume and profit potential, you boost your return on investment (ROI), alleviate some of the pressure to sell large quantities, and reduce the risk of getting stuck with a product you can’t sell for a profit.

In many ways, buying and selling on Amazon is like scoring profits on real estate properties, where experts often advise investors to “make your money when you buy,” meaning if you buy the right property, you’re almost guaranteed to earn a handsome profit when you sell it.

When you’re getting started as an Amazon Seller, look for the low-hanging fruit — products that have certain qualities characteristic of products with high sales and profit potential. While conducting Amazon product research will reveal such products, you can often identify them more quickly by looking for products with these specific qualities.

1. Products that are unique

Selecting unique products that set you apart from the competition gives you greater flexibility to charge what you want without the pressures of competitive pricing. According to the law of supply and demand, the more generic the product, the stiffer the competition, and the lower the price and profit margin.

Here are a few ways to find/create products that stand out from the competition:

  • Make your own handcrafted products, such as jewelry, clothing, soaps, toys, games, and so on.
  • Invent and patent your own product idea(s), hire a manufacturer to produce them, and then sell them on Amazon. 
  • Start listing trending products before the competition notices the product is trending.
  • Find products that use difficult-to-source raw materials that you can access more easily than the competition. If you can control the supply chain for a specific product, your competitors won’t be able to offer the same product.

Any opportunity to offer a unique product is a good place to start your Amazon journey.

2. Products that retails for $25 – $50

The sweet spot for profitable products exists where the product price is above $25 retail with a 40-percent net profit margin or cost to produce of 25 to 30 percent of the retail price to produce it.

Generally, steer clear of products that sell for $20 or less, because Amazon selling fees are likely to gobble up a good portion of your profits. When you sell products for at least $25, you increase your profit margin, which is revenue/cost.

For example, if you buy a product for $3.25 and sell it for $10, Amazon selling fees, FBA fulfillment fees, and the costs related to shipping products to an FBA distribution center are likely to exceed what you paid for the product, leaving you a tiny profit, if any.

3. Products that have a strong sales volume

Although you want to earn a decent profit on each item, selling only a few of an item isn’t going to make you the affluent retailer of your dreams. You want something with a high profit margin and strong sales volume. Unless you’re trying to get ahead of a trend or have invented an amazing product that addresses a serious customer need or fulfills consumers’ longing desires, look for products that meet the following criteria:

  • Strong market demand
  • Items that people commonly consume, wear out, or replace

Market conditions change over time. For example, computers and cellphones are still strong sellers, but as the quality and functionality of these items have increased over time, consumers are finding that they need to upgrade or replace their electronic devices less frequently, leading to slower sales and increasing competition. The moral of this story is to keep an eye on changing demand and be ready to adjust your product-selection strategy.

You can find plenty of product research and analysis tools (free and not) on the Internet to estimate total sales for main product keywords or product lines. Use those tools to identify products that have steady market demand higher than average sales volume. 

One free and easy way to tell whether a particular product sells well is to pull it up on Amazon and add 999 of them to your cart. If the seller has fewer than 999 of those items, the number in stock appears. You can check this number daily to monitor the number of items sold daily and gauge its sales potential. (Of course, the number of items may increase if a shopper returns a product or the seller adds inventory. Also, this tactic doesn’t work if the seller limits the quantity of items a shopper can add to his cart.)

4. Products that are easy to pack and ship

Shipping costs and complexity are a one-two punch that can knock the stuffing out of your profits. When considering whether to sell a particular product, look for the following traits:

  • Easy to pack. Avoid products with complex packaging requirements, such as fragile items or those that require refrigeration or temperature control.
  • Two pounds or lighter to ship (and return).
  • Easy to ship.
  • Sturdy enough to handle shipping, returns, and customer handling.

Shipping costs consume a good chunk of any online retailer’s profits, especially when a customer returns a product, hitting you with a double dose of shipping fees.

5. Products that have a room for improvement

Customer ratings and reviews serve as a window through which you can view and understand the competition and how customers are responding to the product and seller. Just find a product you’re thinking of selling and check out the customer ratings and reviews. Look for the following criteria:

  • Relatively low number of ratings/reviews posted. When competitors already have hundreds of positive customer ratings/reviews, you’ll have a tough time increasing your listing’s search ranking for that product.
  • Relatively high number of low ratings and negative reviews. Low ratings/reviews can be a sign of a problem or opportunity. If reviews indicate dissatisfaction with a product, you may not want to sell it, or you may want to find a similar, higher quality version to sell. If the reviews indicate dissatisfaction with the seller, you may be looking at a golden opportunity to beat the seller by offering better customer service.

How to Find Out What to Sell on Amazon?

So, you’ve decided that you’re okay with paying for shipping costs, and you think your product falls within a reasonable price range. Awesome! 

Now it’s time to think about what you actually want to sell. To help you out, here are five methods that can help you narrow down your options:

1. Research popular products on Amazon manually

You can manually research popular products on Amazon and find out what customers are looking for.

To begin, take a look at Amazon’s best-selling items in a category you’re interested in. This can give you an idea of what’s currently in demand and what’s popular with customers. From there, you can start exploring sub-categories within your chosen category.

Another way to find ideas for popular products is to check out the “Customers also bought” section. This can give you an idea of related products that are popular with customers.

Once you have a list of potential products, it’s time to check whether there’s actually demand for them. One way to do this is to use Google Keyword Planner to see how many people are searching for those products online. 

Alternatively, you could use Sellerapp’s product intelligence tool specifically for Amazon. This tool allows you to investigate popular products on Amazon via keywords and further narrow down your list. Plus, you can take advantage of their seven-day free trial to try it out for yourself.

2. Use a chrome extension to conduct keyword research

There are a couple of popular Chrome extensions that can help you conduct keyword research on Amazon: Jungle Scout and Unicorn Smasher.

Jungle Scout is a great tool that shows you the monthly sales volumes of products and highlights those with low competition. It even allows you to track products over time. Although Jungle Scout’s analytics can help you find a product or industry you could excel in, it can be a bit pricey, especially if you’re just starting out.

If you’re looking for a free alternative to Jungle Scout, Unicorn Smasher is a decent option. While the data may not be as precise as Jungle Scout and some of its advanced features are missing, it can still provide you with estimated monthly sales and revenue for Amazon products at no cost.

Aside from Jungle Scout and Unicorn Smasher, there are also other popular product research extensions that you can explore, such as FBA Calculator by AMZScout, Amazon Keyword Tool by SellerApp, and Helium 10.

So, give these extensions a try and see which one works best for you in conducting keyword research on Amazon!

3. Narrow down your niche within a larger market

Selling a product on Amazon can be tough when you’re competing against 100,000 search results. But don’t worry, there’s a way to stand out and boost your sales. The trick is to find a niche within a larger market with less competition. By doing this, your product becomes more easily found by potential customers who are actively searching for something specific.

For example, let’s say you’re selling recipes. The search term “Receipts” has over 90,000 results. But why not try a more specific search term like “Low carb recipes for weight loss” with only 6,000 results? This approach not only increases the chances of your product becoming a best-seller, but it also targets a more specific audience.

Using a targeted keyword like “Low carb recipes for weight loss” means you’re more likely to attract customers who are already interested in that specific type of cookbook. On the other hand, a generic keyword like “Recipes” could mean anything and may not be relevant to what you’re offering. So, by finding your niche, you increase your chances of standing out in a crowded marketplace and attracting more customers who are ready to buy.

4. Use Best Sellers Rank (BSR) to your advantage

Basically, BSR takes into account a product’s recent and historical sales to determine its popularity. And as a seller, it’s important to pay attention to this because it can give you an idea of which products are in-demand.

Now, here’s a little tip for you: don’t just look for a single product with a high BSR in a category. That might just mean that one item is dominating the market. Instead, focus on product categories that have multiple items with high BSRs. This shows that there’s demand in that area, and it gives you a better chance of success as a seller.

Let’s say you’re interested in selling sports products. If you find that “basketball” has only one item with a high BSR, but “football” has multiple best-selling products on the first page, it would be smarter to prioritize selling footballs. This is because the presence of multiple best-selling footballs suggests that users are willing to consider different options before making a purchase.

5. Avoid competition with big brands

When it comes to selling products on Amazon, don’t make the mistake of trying to compete with big players like Nike, Adidas, Crest, or Colgate. These brands already dominate the market, and it’s unlikely you’ll be able to beat them. Instead, focus on finding a niche product that the big players haven’t covered yet. 

For example, if you want to sell toothpaste, consider selling a unique product like glow-in-the-dark flavorless toothpaste. However, before you start selling, make sure there’s enough demand for the product you have chosen.

6. Crunch the numbers

While it’s essential to find a unique product that isn’t already dominated by big players, it’s equally important to ensure that your product is profitable. Crunch the numbers to determine if you can cover all the expenses related to manufacturing, storage, packaging, and shipping.

Even if you find an excellent product opportunity, you may not be able to make the numbers work. In such cases, you can consider using Amazon FBA to reduce your overhead costs. If you find that a product isn’t profitable, don’t worry. Move on to the next product idea and keep searching until you find the right one.

7. Check the reviews

Reviews are crucial on Amazon. To ensure that your products will sell well, look for items that have positive feedback. Make sure to pay attention to both the quality and the quantity of the reviews. You want to find products with thousands of reviews, but don’t dismiss products with fewer reviews as they may still have potential. Just make sure to read the reviews and determine if they are genuine or fake.

8. Consider cross-selling

When deciding what to sell, think of the big picture. Consider what other products you could sell under the same brand umbrella in the future. Choose products that will allow you to expand your product line easily. For example, if you start with baby wipes, you could expand into diapers, lotions, toys, and baby bags, but if you start with glow-in-the-dark toothpaste, your options will be limited.

9. Weigh one-off purchase vs. recurring sales

When selecting products, consider whether you want to sell single products to many customers or many products to recurring customers. Customers only need one squatty potty, but they’ll need to buy shaving razors or dish sponges monthly. 

Similarly, while customers may only need one pair of Crocs, they will likely need to purchase a new pack of batteries every year or so. Think about the frequency of repurchases for a product when deciding what to sell.

Final Words

If you’ve got a product idea in mind, use the tips we’ve given you to narrow down your approach and find a niche market within a larger group of potential buyers. And if you’re not sure what to sell, start by researching the most popular keywords and successful products on Amazon.

Once you’ve got a list based on your keyword research, think about what other products your potential customers might like even more than the ones currently available on Amazon.

With a little creativity and research, you can make your product stand out and rake in the sales. 

For more guidance, sign up for my online business coaching.  

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