How to Make Money Using Amazon FBA Selling on Amazon for the Holidays – The biggest shopping days of the year are coming up and you can make a lot of money working from home on Black Friday, Cyber Monday and the whole Christmas holiday season.
Ever wonder what it would be like to actually MAKE money on Black Friday, Cyber Monday and over the whole Christmas holiday season? That’s exactly what you can do by selling on Amazon FBA while you work from home.
But don’t take it from me. My friend, Jessica, and her husband Cliff are Amazon FBA pros. Jessica shared her amazing Amazon FBA knowledge here before and is here today to share a little bit about what you can do to make money from home around the holidays by selling on Amazon.
Tell us a little about yourself.
I’ve been selling on Amazon FBA with my husband Cliff since 2010. So many people were fascinated by (and a little confused by!) that “weird Amazon thing” I do, that I started to blog about reselling in 2012.
In 2014, we officially became “The Selling Family” and we now blog and teach courses over at TheSellingFamily.com. We love being The Selling Family because it really represents how we chose a business that allows us to all work together as a family.
Even though I’d always wanted to be an entrepreneur, I was sort of thrust into the world of ecommerce when I got laid off from my job in 2008. The economy was bad then and I didn’t want to look for another job (and risk another lay off!).
So instead of buying dressy clothes for job interviews, I spent my last paycheck on inventory to resell on eBay. Just a few months later, I had made enough to replace my old income.
I loved selling on eBay but it was super time consuming. All those trips to the post office really add up! I had a dilemma: I wanted to make more money but I couldn’t do that on eBay without working way more hours. This wasn’t an option with a new baby at home!
I made the switch to Amazon and their FBA program in 2010. After about a year of selling part-time on Amazon FBA, I had earned enough to help my husband Cliff quit his job. By the end of our first year together, we had made over $100,000 in profit!
Now we run our business together and get to homeschool our son. This was all possible because of Amazon FBA!
What is Amazon FBA?
FBA stands for “Fulfilled By Amazon.” What this means is that even though we’re the ones who own the inventory, Amazon handles all of the orders and warehousing for us.
We find inventory to sell on Amazon using Retail Arbitrage. That means we go out to regular retail stores like Walmart and buy inventory to resell on Amazon. But because we use FBA, we’re not responsible for shipping our items to the customers.
Instead, we pick out inventory, ship it to an Amazon warehouse, and then they store it until a customer places an order. Amazon handles packing, shipping, customer service, and returns. Plus, we get to list our items on Amazon.com and get in front of their millions of daily shoppers.
This system allowed me to grow my business a lot faster than eBay. Because when Amazon handles so many of the day-to-day tasks like shipping, I get to spend more of my time looking for profitable inventory.
This is why I think Amazon FBA is the best platform for anyone who wants to quickly grow an online reselling business.
Can I make money from Amazon FBA on Black Friday, Cyber Monday?
Yup! And lots of it!
I know the last time we talked I mentioned that Cliff and I make a lot of our money just around the holidays. We often make 50% of our yearly income in November and December.
This really all kicks off around Black Friday and then goes strong until early January.
The sales will be coming in FAST during this time of year on Amazon. So as long as you have enough inventory in stock at Amazon warehouses, you can do really well.
Just think about it. There is SO much to buy for the holidays and where do most people go to shop these days? Amazon. Especially when they want that free same-day or 1-day shipping that comes with Amazon Prime.
Toys is the big thing that comes to mind for making money on Black Friday on Amazon. This is when people start searching for the hot new toy to give to their kids or nephews. But people are also shopping for casserole dishes, yard decorations, gifts for adults, cozy pajamas, peppermint flavored candies, and lots of ordinary items too.
I always tell new sellers that they’re going to run out of money to spend on inventory before they run out of profitable items to resell during the holidays. The volume of sales is so high that there’s plenty to go around!
Can you share what a typical Black Friday and Cyber Monday sale looks for you and your FBA business? (When you prepare, what you get, how you know what you’re looking for, etc.)
So with the way Cliff and I do business, we don’t necessarily expect to have a huge sales day on Amazon on Black Friday or Cyber Monday. Instead, we want to BUY a lot of inventory on those days and that whole 4-day weekend.
Peak Amazon sales for us usually happen in the first 2 weeks of December. So our goal is to have as much inventory in stock by then as possible. And Black Friday sales are a great way to load up on lots of inventory for low prices.
We start preparing for the sales in early November. This is when Black Friday ads start getting “leaked” online. We review all of the big ones like Target, Walmart, Kohl’s, and even drug stores.
These ads are often 50+ pages long so something that we actually do is create a spreadsheet version of the Black Friday ads. It’s easier for most people to scan the items on a spreadsheet than to flip through all of the ads. We sell the spreadsheets on our site in November.
One thing we’re looking for is items that would be good candidates to resell on Amazon FBA. For example, a big screen TV would not be good because it’s heavy and large. We really want toys, clothes, household items, and decor.
The next task is to match the items in the ads to the same items on Amazon. That’s how we find out if these items will be good, money-making sellers on Amazon. This part is the most time consuming so we include this info on our spreadsheets as well.
The most important thing about Black Friday is to be prepared in advance. You do NOT want to walk into Walmart at 6pm after Thanksgiving dinner without a plan! It’s not a good time to be standing around scanning items on your phone.
We actually make a buy list the week of Thanksgiving and then we’re able to get in and out of the stores quickly. We also do a fair amount of online shopping for inventory too. Then we don’t have to deal with the crowds 🙂
How do I find things to sell for the holidays?
It’s honestly a lot like the rest of the year. It’s just easier to find items because there are so many sales and there is so much demand on Amazon.
Other than Black Friday weekend, I still head out to retail stores with my scanning app and see what’s profitable on Amazon. You get access to Amazon’s free scanning app as soon as you create a seller account, and that’s how you know which products to buy.
I also spend some time thinking about trends and reading hot toy lists. That can give you some ideas about which product lines to focus on. I think that anything “holiday related” is worth scanning this time of year. You never know when some red serving plates or salted caramel flavored cookies will be flying off the shelves on Amazon!
For new sellers, I would head to Walmart and start scanning all toys, household products, seasonal food items, and yard decorations. That should keep you busy for a while!
What steps should someone take right now to make money with Amazon FBA around the holidays?
First of all, if you don’t have an Amazon Seller account yet, get that going ASAP. This will give you the Amazon Seller App which is how you’ll find inventory. I teach how to setup your account in my free FBA Starter course, so definitely check that out if you need to get started in a hurry.
Then it’s really a matter of sending in as much inventory as you can.
If you are just getting started and it’s already November or December then you might not get the full experience of holiday sales on Amazon. But I say go for it anyway!
We totally missed out on big holiday sales our first year because Cliff didn’t quit his day job until Thanksgiving. But we had a BLAST just experiencing the buzz from the extra sales. It also gave us a lot of knowledge about how the holidays work on Amazon and we used that to our advantage the next year.
Can you make money around other holidays like this? Or is it primarily around the Christmas holidays?
There’s nothing quite like Black Friday through Christmas on Amazon! But there are other great selling seasons if your sales need a boost.
My second favorite “holiday” is actually the Back to School season. I can always count on good sales from that in August. You can also have fun with selling candy for Valentine’s, costumes for Halloween, and even household items for Thanksgiving.
Is this a way to make money from home that you can do all year?
Absolutely! That’s what it is for me and Cliff and that’s what I teach my students in my Amazon Boot Camp course.
Some people will only sell on Amazon from Halloween until Christmas, but most people sell year round. There are plenty of items to sell and millions of eager Amazon customers waiting to buy.
It’s not quite as splashy as selling Hatchimals in December, but some of my bestsellers are boring things like toilet wands, face wash, and crackers.
Everyone loves the thrill of December sales, but the rest of the year is pretty great, too.
Are there any resources where people can learn how to do this the right way? (Feel free to add in any of the resources from your site – either freebies or paid products)
I have quite a few resources that focus on holiday sales on Amazon. There’s so much potential to make money this time of year that you need to learn the strategy to make the most of it.
I share my big picture strategy in my Q4 Profits Guide. This is an ebook that’s all about maximizing your profits during Q4 (that’s what Amazon sellers call the holiday selling season). You can buy this guide any time of year and we update it pretty regularly.
For 2019, I put together a couple of special resources. One is the Black Friday Spreadsheets which I talked about earlier. And we’re also going to lead a live masterclass about how to make the most of Black Friday sales. You can read about both of our Black Friday selling resources here. These are really more for experienced sellers.
Now if this is the first time you’ve ever heard about Amazon FBA, you might not be interested in Q4 strategy. I’d recommend that anyone who’s curious about Amazon go through my new Amazon FBA Starter Course.
This free course contains 9 videos taken directly from my paid course, the Amazon Boot Camp. The Amazon FBA Starter Course will teach you how to start your Amazon business and find your first inventory to resell. By the time you finish the training, you’ll know if Amazon FBA is a good fit for you.
Anything else you want to share about selling on Amazon FBA around the holidays? Word of encouragement? ?
Don’t forget to have fun! Amazon FBA holiday sales are fast and furious so sometimes it gets stressful. But what’s more fun than getting paid to go shop for toys and candy?
I would tell new sellers to make the most of their first Q4, but know that it will go so much better in year two. The biggest problem I see for new sellers in general is that they give up too quickly when they can’t find inventory on their first day out at Big Lots.
If you stick with Amazon for those first few months, the payoff can be huge. Whether you want to support your family with Amazon like I do or if you just want extra money to buy your own Christmas gifts, Amazon FBA is a really special opportunity.