How to make good money selling items for 1p on Amazon

By Sharon Fussell, July 3, 2014


Yes, you really can make good money selling books for 1p on Amazon! Just follow these simple rules…

One of the most frequent questions I am asked is: How is it possible to make money selling items for 1p on Amazon?How to make good money selling items for 1p on Amazon

It is possible to make money on Amazon if you are savvy about it: you are actually making profits out of the postal credit Amazon take from the buyer and award to you (after cost of their fees are removed).

But it is really only worthwhile making a profit on any low-value products if you are an Amazon Pro Merchant Seller. This is only if you sell over 40 items per month.

Oh, and don’t bother with CDs and DVDs if you can only price at 1p: this is because the postage credit Amazon award you will NOT cover the cost of postage, let alone make you a profit.

The postage credit for books is higher – £2.80 per book – so you will receive £2.32 after Amazon fees.

In order to profit by selling low-value books on Amazon, do the following:

Make sure your book is a large letter size and
NOT a small parcel


This ensures your book will be posted at the cheapest rates by Royal Mail, as the following Royal Mail guidelines say: ‘Large letters not exceeding Length: 35.3cm Width: 25cm Thickness up to
and including: 2.5cm’

The more expensive small parcels option sees packages that weigh under 1000 kg costing at least £2.80, no matter how light: ‘Small parcels not exceeding Length: 45cm Width: 35cm Depth: 8cm’.

So, ensure the book you list is a large letter size and weighs under 500g


These weights enable you to make a small profit within Royal mails postage rates – as follows:

100g = 73p
250g = £1.17
500g = £1.48

Only ever use standard postage


The cost for signed-for items is significantly higher than standard postage prices, at least an extra £1 per item.

Always send Second Class


It’s cheaper to use Second Class postage and though it is perceived to be slower than First Class mail, I have not had any complaints from customers on speed of delivery: in fact the opposite is true.

Don’t blindly copy other Amazon seller prices

Don’t follow suit and copy all Amazon sellers with the false perception that if they list a book at 1p there MUST be a profit in it.

This is NOT so.

Many big sellers receive preferential postage rates: you will not be able to compete. They can often post 2kg books for the same price as a large letter will cost you.

Tip – always weigh your books to ensure there is a profit after posting.

Use suitable packaging


You really do not want your books to get damaged before the customer receives it.

According to Amazon’s rules, you are responsible for the safety of your item until the customer receives it: not Royal Mail.

I find the ‘Mail Lite’ envelopes, with an inner layer of bubble wrap, are fine.

Stick to this criteria and you will make money on Amazon selling 1p books.

How to price products not on Amazon’s system

If you have an item that no one else is selling at the moment, you are in a good place!

List your item for a reasonable and fair price – never price at 1p. You want to sell your book, not give it away!

I find the following prices work for normal everyday-type books:

  • Paperback fiction – £6.99–£12.99
  • Niche hardcover non-fiction – £12.99–£24.99
  • Very unusual books titles – £49.99 upwards

If you are really not sure how to price your item, Google the book and its ISBN, and see if other sites are selling the book. If so, use their price as a guide.


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