Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Top 3 Grocery Items to Sell on Amazon

Selling groceries on Amazon has proven to be a profitable and interesting journey in my eCommerce career. I started selling groceries on Amazon in 2010 and quickly learned that the opportunities are endless. The most difficult concept about selling groceries for my clients to grasp is that not everyone is seeing the same grocery products that you are. Regional and specialty products continue to gain popularity on Amazon and it just takes some time and research to figure out how to make it all work.

I've noticed some patterns with my own grocery business that may be helpful to others looking to start selling grocery items on Amazon, or to expand your current product line and think outside the box a bit. So here is my top 3 list.

Coffee. According to Food Manufacturing.com, "Overall coffee consumption jumped by five percentage points this year, according to the NCA National Coffee Drinking Trends (NCDT) market research study. With this increase, 83% of the U.S. adult population now drinks coffee. At the same time, daily consumption remained strong and steady at 63%, while those who drink coffee at least once per week was up slightly to 75%." Coffee is an extremely diverse product line with many options. The variations range from brand, flavor, packaging, and caffeine level. Have you ever looked at how many different ways coffee is sold? Beans, ground, instant, pods, K-cups, discs, single serving packs, tea-bag style, capsules, and even ready-made beverages. Coffee usually has a long shelf life so you don't have to obsess over the expiration date, and it travels well, (no breakage). Amazon shows 62,000 offerings for coffee, only 8,200 are Prime Eligible - or 86% that are NOT Prime Eligible.  Remember, it is estimated that Amazon has over 10 million Prime customers - they are waiting for items to become Prime Eligible and purchase them. Lots of opportunity in this category.

Cereal.  Another diverse product line with many variations. There are 7,700 offers for cereal on Amazon, with only 1,675 of them Prime Eligible. In August 2012, The NPD Group reported that "Cereal has a penetration rate of about 90% in U.S. homes (97% in homes with kids)." It would be impossible for Amazon to stock every single option - there are just too many. Variations include hot vs. cold cereal, kids vs. adult cereal, regular size boxes vs. individual serving size, wheat / corn / rice / oat varieties, gluten-free, organic, Kosher, vegan, vegetarian, low fat, sugar-free, non-GMO, with or without dried fruit, the list goes on and on. Cereal travels well (no breakage) and it is a common household food in most American homes. My best tip here is to avoid selling cereal in single boxes because they can go into Add-On status and sales will stall. (Learned that the hard way.)

Nuts and Seeds. Amazon shows over 27,000 listings for nuts in the grocery and gourmet food category, but only 4,000 are Prime Eligible.That leaves a lot of room for FBA sellers to add these offerings to Prime Customers.  So let's talk nuts - another category with lots of variations - peanuts, almonds, pecans, pistachios, cashews, brazil nuts, hazelnuts, macadamia, walnuts, sunflower seeds, and pumpkin seeds. Nuts and seeds are sold in bags, cans, boxes, and single-serve packs. They travel well, usually have a long shelf life, and are a popular healthy snack.

When you consider the research, and how many products in the Grocery and Gourmet Food category that are already listed on Amazon and are not Prime Eligible - it just makes sense to make them available for Prime Buyers. What are you walking by in the grocery store every week that you could be selling over and over again on Amazon every month?


Check out my downloadable course, "The ABCs of Selling Groceries on Amazon" to learn more about this fun niche.

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Using Grocery Stores as an Inventory Source

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