Amazon is a global business – with distribution centers around the world. Once you have optimized your product in 1 market – you can scale the same product to multiple other Amazon regions. In this article we cover the top 7 tips for expanding your Amazon seller operation worldwide.
Tip 1 Europe
Using a single European account based in the UK you can sell to all of the markets in Europe where Amazon has a presence. This is changing slightly because of BREXIT – but you can still use a single European base, like Germany or Italy, to cross sell across multiple markets.
There is a fee of Euro 1.50 to ship out of one location, but it means you can instantly serve thousands of extra customers a month. In addition, after the listing has been translated, you can answer all customer service emails in English which greatly simplifies operations.
Combined European sales means by listing items here you can potentially double your overall sales and profits. The competition may be less for some items and more for others, but overall the European market is less competitive on Amazon.
Tip 2 Translation
The main issue with listing overseas involves translating your Amazon listing and keywords to match the new market. The rest of the system is similar to Amazon USA.
Search outsourcing websites such as freelancer.com to get your listings translated and to find someone to do detailed keyword research in the market. It’s worth getting your listing, packaging, instructions and any additional material translated into all the main European languages.
That means you can sell the same product across all the different markets where Amazon operates.
Tip 3 Taxes and VAT
European governments like to squeeze every penny they can out of a business.
The tax laws are quite different in Europe. You need to collect and pay VAT, value-added tax, on all the items you sell in this market.
There are many services and accountants available to help you set up a business in the UK or Europe. When calculating your expected profit be sure to factor in that you have to pay 20% VAT to the government.
Tip 4 Localization
Some products may not sell well in these markets simply because customer tastes are different.
If you are in the sports niche, you’ll find plenty of items related to your existing products that you can add to your range to match the local market. Ideally you want to focus only on the products that you can sell in the USA and Europe at the same time because this reduces administration and boosts sales.
Test 100 units of each of the items to see how they perform in the local markets.
Tip 5 Differences
European countries are much stricter on promotions and heavy discounts. It’s more usual to do a 5 to 20 unit promotion, rather than 100+.
In addition, Europeans tend to expect a higher quality standard of product. German and UK customs have strict documentation requirements for bringing goods into these countries. You have to make sure you have all of the necessary paperwork before sending bulk orders to these locations.
It’s better to send 100 or so units via freight to learn the process.
Tip 6 Systemize
You can potentially run your customer service for European markets at the same times as you answer US queries.
If you’re already checking messages twice a day, you can use these times to answer European customers as well. This saves you from the hassle of trying to operate across multiple time zones.
Amazon wants you to answer queries within 24 hours, and this strategy allows you to do that.
Managing a system, finances and accounts across multiple markets is more complicated and can get costly. That’s why it’s only worth doing once you hit 10 or more top selling items on Amazon USA.
Tip 7 Further Expansion
As well as selling to Amazon in Europe and the USA, you can also sell to Canada, Mexico, Japan and many other markets.
That’s why international expansion via the Amazon platform is a great way to grow your business, using a system you already know and understand. You may have to pick up some additional local strategies, but since the overall skill set is the same it allows you to move and expand quickly.