t’s no surprise an increasing number of private label sellers have started looking towards starting or growing their FBA business in Europe rather than concentrate in the US.
Amazon sales in Europe have steadily grown since 2010
If you’re considering the same right now or have already decided to focus in Europe, there are some important factors that you should know when beginning your product selection for the EU marketplace.
If you’ve already got a successful product in the US, definitely do the research required to see if the rankings & BSRs are there to make a competitive entrance into any of the EU Marketplaces. Success with a product in the US doesn’t necessarily guarantee success on Amazon EU, but it is a good place to start your research.
Tools such as JungleScout and Unicorn Smasher are still very helpful, but they’re still being refined for the EU, and the numbers should be taken into account with a pinch of salt.
This same advice applies to new sellers as well, although – if you’re still asking yourself “What product should I sell?”, it’s worth starting your search with the top 100 lists on Amazon US.
Examine your US product notes and see how each product is selling in Europe. Ideally, you want to find a product selling extremely well in the US and just okay on Amazon UK and Amazon Germany. Look for ways you could improve upon products that are already selling well in addition to opportunities to optimize your listing.
One of the greatest advantages you have at this time is that American FBA sellers have been in the game for a long time now. There are myriad articles, resources and how to’s all teaching US sellers how to search for winning products and optimize their listings.
There aren’t as many resources out there for Sellers in the EU marketplace. FBA Frontiers was created to specifically help sellers break into the EU marketplace, so use this to your advantage to get in early to establish your private label.
To determine how easy or challenging it may be to gain rank with a product on the first page of a category, an easy rule to follow is the “Top 3” rule.
Quite simply, look at the Top 3 sellers of a product and the number of reviews each product has received. Find the average of total number of reviews for the top 3 sellers and you’ll need to aim to get at least one third of the reviews to compete.
As you probably already know, Amazon US is extremely competitive which makes entering the market now all the more challenging. Typically, the top 3 Sellers have reviews averaging 500 – 1000 reviews. This means to compete, you’ll need to run more promotions, you’ll need to invest more into CPC ads, and lastly, you’ll need to rely on getting significantly more reviews in order to be competitive.
Some private label products require special approval before they can be sold on Amazon, and some products are entirely restricted from being sold as FBA products. These products are typically sensitive to temperature, subject to an expiration date, or potentially dangerous or contains hazardous materials.
Currently, these are the more popular categories in which Sellers must be approved prior to listing:
– Shoes & Handbags
– Apparel & Accessories
– Fashion Jewelry
– Health & Beauty
However, don’t see this as an obstacle to whether or not you should move forward with a product. Amazon restricting more popular categories is actually great advantage for you, the Seller, these categories are likely to be be less competition compared to unrestricted categories.
To get approved for a category, the FBA seller needs to meet a specific criteria, and while getting approved takes more work, in most cases, the added effort pays off once you’re approved and able to sell.
Before you even start looking at products, it’s imperative to take the time to keep the following factors in mind to avoid making potentially costly mistakes from the get go.
The first and most obvious consideration is to know the currency differences and the exchange rates. It takes a bit of time to wrap your mind around calculating things into Euro instead of Dollars but it’s a factor that will certainly affect your profit margins.
Another key consideration are the differences between US English and British English when researching keywords. The slight nuances in language can make a huge difference in your search results, so it’s important to know the most common terms your buyers would use. Some examples of products that have two entirely different meanings in the US and UK include “plaster”, “vest”, “trainer”, “rubber” “dummy” & “biscuit”. Do a search yourself to see the differences.
Keep in mind that your product listings will need to be translated and keyword-optimized in the dominant language for each marketplace. Google translate won’t cut it, and you’ll need to get in contact with translation service.
Now that you’ve got a good foundation to start your product research, it’s time to start taking actionable steps to set yourself up for selling in Europe. It’s advisable to talk to experienced Amazon consultant or attorney familiar with the Amazon EU to start the process of opening your EU Seller Account.
Learn more about setting up your Amazon Business in Europe by watching FBA Frontier’s crash course to selling on Amazon EU.