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How to do Amazon FBA Private Label Product Research

January 29, 2021 No Comments

This post may contain affiliate links, which means if you click through to a website from a link found here on my blog and register or purchase something, I may get a commission at no extra cost to you. 


Knowing where to start when it comes to Amazon FBA private label product research can feel incredibly overwhelming.

Where do you start?

How long will it take??

How do you know if your product idea is even any good???

Add to this, the fact that you’re embarking on a whole new venture for yourself and are having to learn new things every step of the way, and it can all feel a little tempting to give up, before you even begin.

That’s why I share monthly updates on my own Amazon Private Label journey, as I want to show you that problems do arise – but solutions are available. I’m tracking it from the very start, as I look to achieve my goal of financial freedom and location-dependence, and one day being able to work for myself full-time.

And by full-time, I mean ideally spending no more than ten hours per week on my Amazon business!

I truly wish I’d been able to find a private label case study online when I was first starting out, so I could really get a feel for what this business model is all about. Sure, there is plenty of content available out there – but no-one seemed to really get into the gritty information, and that’s what I wanted.

Equally, I couldn’t find any blog posts sharing the real all-encompassing details when it came to Amazon FBA private label product research – which is where I wanted to step in.

Let’s start at the beginning – what is Amazon private label?

Private label is the process of finding a third-party manufacturer and supplier (often through the likes of Alibaba) who you purchase products from to create a brand around.

As the private label brand owner, you create the branding, the overall product offering, the packaging, and any tweaks you might like to be made to the manufacturer’s samples to differentiate from competitors. 

It’s not reinventing the wheel, and you don’t even need to create a brand new product – all you need is some strong product research, a little bit of cash to inject in your new business, and the creativity to stand out from the current offering.

Oh, and heaps of resilience!

What should you be looking for when trying to source a product to private label?

As a new seller, you want to stay away from anything complicated. That rules out electronic products, and products with many moving parts – at least until you’ve got your head around the process, and feel a little more confident. Likewise, I’d stay away from topicals that are in contact with your skin, or consumables, to play it safe.

Instead, you want to focus on products that fit within (or fall only slightly outside of) the following parameters:

  • High demand
    • This is super important – you could create the best product in the world, but if there’s no demand for the product, there’s no point.
  • Low competition
    • This could come in a matter of guises:
    • Low review counts for competitors
    • Bad reviews for competitors (giving you the opportunity to improve on the product)
    • Very few sellers
    • Poor listings
  • Weighs less than 2lbs
    • To keep shipping costs low, you ideally don’t want your first product to be too heavy
  • Isn’t oversized
    • If you’re opting for the Fulfilled by Amazon (FBA) business model, where your products will be shipped and stored in Amazon warehouses, in order to keep these storage fees low, you don’t want to purchase any particularly oversized items.
  • Can differentiate from competitors
    • Differentiation is key – during product research, this should be at the forefront of your mind, and you should constantly be asking yourself how you can improve on the existing products out there. Is it the actual product itself? Is it just the listing?
  • Sells for between £15-30
    • Assuming you don’t have unlimited cash resources, the general school of thought is that for new sellers, you want to opt for products that sell within £15-30 as this will mean their buy cost is relatively low.
  • Profit margins look healthy enough to build in PPC spend
    • Sure, you might have 20% profit margins, but can you afford to advertise your product through Amazon’s PPC programme? Before committing to any product, you need to make sure you know your numbers thoroughly – including your advertising budget.
  • Evergreen
    • You want to find a product that sells well all-year round, and isn’t purely seasonal – at least to begin with. But what does this mean? Well, there’s no point opting for fake cobwebs for Halloween, as there’ll be no demand for your product outside of October. Instead, think about what people need all-year round.
  • Relatively uncomplicated
    • For your first couple of products, whilst you get a feel for the process, you might want to stay away from electronics, items with many parts, or products that might be gated (think Hazmat products, for example, that would require approval from Amazon for you to sell).

Finding the best possible product is the most important aspect of your business, so don’t get put off if this part takes weeks – or even months! It’s better to take your time, do your research, obtain samples from suppliers and really run the numbers, than rush into something that will end up losing you money – not to mention lower your morale!

Using Helium 10 to find private label products

Personally, Helium 10 is the backbone of my business – along with 700,000 other Amazon sellers!

It’s an incredibly all-encompassing bit of software that I wholeheartedly recommend to every single Amazon seller.

It can help you find a product to sell, create irresistible product listings on Amazon, target particular keywords that will convert the most sales possible, and it also comes with a whole suite of support features.

I use it every single day, and there are a few particular elements of Helium 10 that will help you kick-start your private label product research.

1. Helium 10 Academy

The Helium 10 Academy is a free eight-week course for Helium 10 customers which guides you through everything you need to know about how to use the software, and launch a successful Amazon FBA Private Label business.

Modules include lessons on product research, keyword research, listing optimisation, marketing, operations and analytics, and they are an absolute must-watch to ensure you get the most out of the software.

It is so tempting to dive straight into product research as soon as you purchase your Helium 10 package, but instead, take a little time to watch the videos and work your way through the Academy, taking in everything you can.

Many people won’t (I didn’t when I first started!) and those little tidbits of knowledge that they share could give you an edge over your competitors – so consume every bit of content out there.

Additionally, Helium 10 have an active Youtube channel and podcast, which are great sources of information for selling on Amazon in general – not to mention the relatable and inspiring stories they share of everyday-people achieving incredible levels of success with their private label business.

2. Xray – Helium 10 Chrome Extension

I use this every day.

Literally. Every. Single. Day.

Xray plugs into Chrome as an Extension, so as you’re browsing Amazon, or if you’re struck with a bit of inspiration, you can load it up and see how potential competitors are selling.

Xray will tell you how many units of each product on the first few pages are selling each month, how many reviews they have, how often the keyword is being searched for, along with the average returns and a potential success rating.

All you need to do to use Xray is head to Amazon, and search for the product you’re considering selling. Once the results are returned and your page is fully loaded with products related to your search term, you can load up Helium 10’s Xray as a Chrome Extension – all in the click of a button.

For the example below, I used ‘garlic press’ as the keyword (or the item I searched for on Amazon). This isn’t a product I would personally recommend myself due to the data provided below, but for the example, it’s a great way to show you the kind of overview and insights Xray is able to present.

If you scroll across, you’ll find even more data provided by the Extension…

So, as you can see, Xray here shows you the total revenue of all garlic press sales for the past month (£317,530), along with the average revenue for each listing (£6,903), and the average price of each listing (£10.16).

It also shows you the average number of reviews each listing has (1,016), along with the success score (26/100).

As the business owner, it’s up to you to then interpret this output of data and decide whether it might be a product you are interested in pursuing. Personally, where garlic presses are concerned, I’d say this ship has well and truly sailed.

Years ago, it was the textbook FBA private label product example, where sellers could easily be making multiple six figures each month on this product.

Nowadays, with such a high level of competition (judging from the average number of reviews) and a low selling price, I’d be looking elsewhere.

3. Helium 10 Black Box

I actually found inspiration for my first product through utilising Helium 10’s Black Box feature.

Black Box allows you to enter in particular parameters you want your products to fit in (for example, those we ran through above), and then returns a whole load of products that fit within these requirements.

You can then trawl through these results, see which work for you, do further research, contact suppliers for pricing quotes and samples, and potentially embark on launching your new product.

Let’s run through an example together.

Below, you’ll see the front page of the Helium 10 Black Box portal, and the parameters I wanted my product to fit within:

I selected three niches I was interested in exploring, wanted products that made more than £5000 in revenue each month, sold for a minimum of £15 per unit, had a maximum of 200 reviews (thereby making them more easily to compete against), and weighed less than 2lbs to keep shipping costs as low as possible.

These aren’t the parameters you have to stick to here, and are solely being used as examples (although they aren’t necessarily bad places to start!)

Once I was happy with the metrics I wanted Black Box to explore for me, I ran the search – with well over 200 results being returned.

One of which was the below resistance bands, which are currently making over £13,000 in sales each month.

That is how easy it is to use Black Box!

From here, you’d need to conduct further research – from checking the finances with suppliers and identifying ways in which you can diversify from existing offerings – but Black Box is a great place to start.

For my first private label product, Helium 10’s Black Box pointed me towards a particular material that seemed to be selling well on Amazon. Whilst the product we went for wasn’t within the parameters we specified (it actually sells for below the £15 minimum we entered into Black Box), it did give us the idea to research further into the particular material, and launch our first product.

Black Box takes the guessing out of it, saves time, and allows you to feel that little more confident in your decisions when it can all feel a little overwhelming.

Helium 10 Discount Code

After relying so heavily on their software in my business, I’m thrilled to be working with Helium 10 on a wider basis. They’re currently offering all Funding Her Freedom readers the following discounts:

Click on the image or follow this link to access the discounts and start your Amazon private label product research today – you can even have access to a 30 day free trial, and a 30-day money back guarantee to make sure it’s something you absolutely want to pursue.

Other Amazon FBA private label product research methods

There are no right or wrong ways to conduct Amazon FBA private label product research.

You could use software, you could be struck by a moment of inspiration, you could research competitors overseas – all that really matters is you find a product that has a good profit margin, the demand is there, and is relatively uncomplicated (at least for your first couple).

Additional ways you might find your next product include:

  • Look at the bestsellers on Amazon within your niche of interest

This is a great way to get a feel for what is currently selling – and whilst you may not be looking to copy the bestsellers (by the time you have the product with you, you’ll probably have missed the boat on this one anyway), it could give you ideas.

Ask yourself why they are bestsellers – and explore that further.

  • Read reviews of products you’re considering – how can you improve on existing offer?

Once you’ve found a product you’re interested in, explore the other listings – starting with the reviews.

Make a beeline for the 1*/2*/3* reviews and read the comments – how can you ensure your product is meeting these needs? Then read the 4*/5* reviews – what are buyers loving (and therefore what do you need to ensure your product has?)

  • Look on Alibaba to see what is currently popular on their platform

There’s a reason why these products are proving popular – because they’re selling somewhere and businesses are working with Alibaba to keep up with demand!

It’s well worth exploring some of the niches on the platform and seeing what is currently selling well on Alibaba across the world.

  • Use Pinterest trends

Pinterest is a great place to find out what’s trending, and for UK-based sellers, it’s a great place to predict what might be the next big thing for us.

Whilst Pinterest users span the globe, the majority are based in the USA – and with the UK usually a couple of months behind on trends, you could get a head-start!

  • See what’s popular in other countries

Keep an eye on what’s proving popular in other countries through monitoring social media, magazine-websites and forums. If you can be one of the first to market in your country, it’ll give you longer to obtain reviews – the holy grail of product listings – and make you the preferred seller of choice.

  • Inspiration will strike at the most unexpected of times

Make sure you keep a notes file on your phone, or a notebook close to hand so that you can jot down any product ideas as and when they crop up.

You can then qualify these product ideas with the Helium 10 tools to make sure it will be a viable option, before proceeding any further.


Final Thoughts

Product research is the most important aspect of your business. You need to ensure your business venture is as educated a gamble as possible, and through using software such as Helium 10, this is totally possible.

I know people who have spent six months trying to find the product, and others who have found a product within a day. Personally, I got lucky and found my first product within a few days – but don’t be disheartened if it doesn’t happen straight away for you.

Try various different methods of Amazon FBA private label product research – use Helium 10, ask friends and family what must-have products they have lying around the house, look up bestsellers on Amazon, see what’s popular in other countries – and find one that works for you.

Don’t rush into anything, really delve into your research, and get to know your numbers. If, after it all, all signs are looking positive, congratulations – I think you just found your next product!

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Steph at Funding Her Freedom

Steph

Funding Her Freedom shows you how to make more money, save more money, and become financially free. If you'd like to get in touch, shoot me an email on steph@fundingherfreedom.com. Looking forward to connecting! Read More

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