Selling on Amazon – Year One

It’s been a bit over a year since I started selling physical products on Amazon (I did mean to do some ongoing posts about it during that time, oops). I’ve learnt a lot in the year, made some great decisions and some total shite ones. I will share a bit here and document where the business is at now (August 2016).

Finances

I’ll start with the money shot.

Screen Shot 2016-08-19 at 16.44.53

So I’ve done a bit over £150k in sales on Amazon.co.uk and about €15K on the other european Amazon marketplaces. Meaning I’ve hit the threshold to have to register for VAT (boo). This has come off a stock investment of about £30K and all profits being reinvested. Profit margin is about 25% after Amazon fees, VAT etc.

I split the business into the following distinct parts:
Sourcing – Finding stuff to buy and sell at a profit
Prep and ship – Preparing the goods and shipping them out
Business Management – Accounts, VAT, running stuff and other boring crap
Education – Keeping up to date on trends, tools and changes in this business model landscape
I will do more detailed posts on each of these at some point (but don’t hold your breath).

Premises

toys In May 2016 I became a grownup and got dedicated business premises. I started off by packing boxes in the kitchen, boxes would come in and go out the same or next day. I out grew that pretty quickly so started storing stuff in half the living room, which soon filled up. Next a very good friend (if you have interest in aquatic systems check him out) offered me space at his industrial unit. This meant I could start buying in bulk and get deliveries on palettes, and drip feed stock in as required.

In May 2016 I took the plunge and got my own unit. It’s 1,100 square feet costing £700 per month and is 5 minutes from my house. So my mate has his unit space back and my family have a semi normal house again (thanks for the support and understanding).

What Next

When I started writing this I was getting ready for 2016 Q4 (you know that silly shopping season), I’m now at near the end of Q4 and finishing this post so I can do a fuller post on my Q4 shenanigans (which I think have been pretty epic). So pretend your reading this in August 2016. But Merry Christmas.