How to impress your customers when selling on Amazon

By Sharon Fussell, March 9, 2012

When selling on Amazon the first contact with your customer is when they receive their order so it is fundamentally important to ensure that when they receive them they are given a good impression of you as a seller.

How can you do this?

By ensuring their items are wrapped appropriately.

Selling on Amazon: The importance of first impressions

Fist impressions are very important and if orders are sent out badly wrapped this can cause disappointment and perhaps a quick adverse response from buyers leading to bad feedback.

I know that to some sellers packaging is not important. I’ve even heard horror stories about items have been sent in decrepit packaging, stained, ripped and just badly cared for!

Books, on the whole are easy to package and, as you know, I advocate using padded envelopes – admittedly they are not the cheapest packaging to use, but they are very fit for purpose. To save costs there is nothing to prevent you from using recycled envelopes or packaging, just ensure it is in good order and how you would like to receive your goods, as Philosopher Immanuel Kant put it – “Do to others as you would like them to do to you.”

When you first start out, or if you only sell a few items per month then what alternative packaging can you use to keep costs low?

Here are some examples:

  • Use recycled padded envelopes rescued from personal use
  • Beg and borrow used padded envelopes from friends and relatives
  • Rescue from being binned at the office in work
  • Buy in small amounts from pound shops
  • Use normal envelopes but wrap the book with recycled bubble wrap first

FBA Forum

If you are using the FBA method of selling on Amazon you may have noticed that Amazon have made changes to some of their fees/commission since the beginning of March.

It is a real pain when Amazon make changes, especially when these changes affect profit. This is going to be a particularly bad change if you rely on thin margins from selling low value books.

Amazon have put the pick and pack fee up to 60p from 18p (inc VAT). This cuts deep into the profit from books priced at £2.80 (my minimum).

Now, there is little we can do when Amazon chose to move the goal posts, except to make a change to the type of books/products we sell. For example here are a few changes I am making to counteract Amazon’s fee increase.

  • I avoid buying bulky and/or heavy paperbacks (which I believe will only attract a price of £2.80 (or lower))
  • I do not list hardbacks that attract a low value price.
  • I ensure I pay as little as I can for paperbacks likely to only sell for my minimum price of £2.80, e.g. between 10p and 25p each.

Books I would have purchased to sell, as long as the condition was right, e.g. titles such as The Time Travelers Wife, I will now avoid.

I acknowledge that books I already have stored with Amazon will sell with reduced profits, but I know I will still make a profit. Indeed despite fee increases, I will never be out of profit, because I list my books sensibly.

I do wonder how some FBA sellers who have books priced below £2.80, (sometimes by a pound or more) are going to fare. I would have thought that even before Amazon’s changes, their profits would have been low, now every book sold must be costing them money!

In my opinion, you should be in business to make money not give it away!


What do you think?

You must be logged in to post a comment.