Everyone’s looking for the easiest way to make money online.
Experienced eCommerce store owners will tell you that there is no shortcut to success. It requires hard work, persistence, and a little bit of luck.
However, that’s not entirely true. While it’s definitely not easy to make money online, it’s not as hard as you might think.
One of the secrets to eCommerce success is the ability to quickly identify the easiest products to sell on Amazon, eBay, or your chosen platform for a generous profit.
In this post, I’m going to show you the simple process of elimination that the top online sellers use to find highly profitable products.
All of this advice has been tried and tested by SaleHoo members and experts, so you can be sure that it really works.
The profitable product funnel
A common problem that people encounter when looking for a product to sell online is the overwhelming number of products on a supplier’s website. The struggle is real!
Some suppliers list thousands of items in dozens of different categories. So where do you start?
Imagine a supplier’s website as a funnel. At the top of the funnel are all of the products you could possibly sell.
You then use a method, which we will outline below, to eliminate products and categories that don’t meet certain criteria.
The next step is to focus on specific niches that you know to be popular and profitable. You then identify which products have the highest profit margins.
Finally, you end up with the one or two products that will be the easiest to sell for a profit on Amazon or eBay.
Using SaleHoo Labs
This process is made much easier by using a tool like SaleHoo Labs. SaleHoo Labs is a powerful market research tool that uses live data from Amazon and eBay to categorize products by sell rate, average retail price, and competition.
It allows you to see which products will be the easiest to sell online at a glance.
As an example, I was able to find this Chemex Glass Coffee Maker in the Kitchen & Dining category in less than two minutes.
It has an average retail price of $45, an 88% sell rate, and low competition on Amazon. It might also be possible to turn this into a private label product, adding instant value.
SaleHoo Labs acts as a profitable product funnel, allowing you to set custom parameters to find exactly what you’re looking for in minutes.
The DIY approach
If you want to do all the heavy lifting yourself, there’s a simple framework you can use to find profitable products that are easy to sell online.
This method will allow you to quickly navigate a supplier’s website and zero in on the products that will be easy (and profitable) to sell online.
We’re going to use PulseTV.com as an example. PulseTV is one of SaleHoo’s verified suppliers. They’re a good example to use because they supply a wide variety of products.
Going through every product and category on Pulse TV and checking them against the retail prices on Amazon and eBay would be a time consuming and, ultimately, futile task.
Only a fraction of the products on Pulse TV will be profitable, meaning the wholesale price is significantly less than the price they sell for on Amazon.
It’s all about eliminating the products that won’t be easy to sell as soon as possible, so you can focus on the ones that will be profitable.
Here’s how the DIY profitable product funnel works to find your next best selling item in just a few minutes.
Step 1: Avoid restricted categories
Firstly, you want to eliminate products in restricted categories, especially when you’re new to eCommerce.
That’s because your Amazon or eBay account needs to meet certain specifications in order to sell restricted or prohibited products.
Restricted categories include: Beauty products, grocery items, health and personal care items, jewellery, watches, toys and games (during the fourth quarter), and high-end brands popular with counterfeits such as Apple and Beats by Dre.
Looking at the Pulse TV website, we can immediately eliminate the Toys and Health and Beauty categories, narrowing down our search in one swift step.
Step 2: Avoid big brand and designer categories
There are some product categories where big name brands dominate the market. When you think of jeans, you think Levis. When you think of smartphones, you think Apple.
The reason you want to avoid these products as a drop shipper or wholesaler is because you’re going to struggle to find them at competitive prices and will most likely make tiny profits or losses by selling them on Amazon.
Looking at the PulseTV website you’re going to want to steer clear of the As Seen on TV category, as well as some products in the Electronics category.
Step 3: Avoid saturated categories
If you really want to pinpoint profitable products quickly, it’s best to eliminate saturated niches.
This is standard eCommerce best practice and here’s why: You’re going to find it much easier to sell products when you aren’t competing with a heap of other sellers.
If you have to compete with 20 others who are selling the same product, it means your share of the market is going to be tiny and it may force you into price competition, which you want to avoid at all costs.
Niches such as clothing and electronics accessories such as smartphone cases are examples of saturated markets.
Looking at the PulseTV website, we can probably rule out smartphone accessories, DVDs and Entertainment, as well as particularly competitive niches in the Auto Accessories and Fashion Accessories categories.
In three easy steps, we’ve seriously narrowed down our search for a profitable product that will be easy to sell online.
So where to next?
How to find the easiest items to sell online
At this point, we’re about three-quarters of the way through our profitable product funnel.
The next step requires us to explore the remaining categories to find the best product for your business.
This part of the process is a bit of trial and error and it helps if you have some idea of what products are trending.
Repeat these three steps until you’ve found the perfect product to sell online:
Choose a product and check the wholesale price
Search for the same product on Amazon or eBay to find the retail price
Check how many others are selling the same product
Browsing through the Travel Accessories category on Pulse TV, I was quite interested in the RFID-Blocking Wallet as these wallets are popular with travellers.
It also falls under personal security – another trending niche.
However, a quick search of Amazon shows me that the retail price and profit margin wouldn’t be viable.
Next, I take a look at the ‘In The Kitchen category on Pulse TV and I’m immediately drawn to the SmartVac 20 Vacuum Seal Food Saver Kit.
It comes under the kitchen appliance niche, but I’m also aware that it might appeal to health and fitness types who do weekly meal preparation.
The wholesale price is $24.99, but if you look closely you can buy five units for $99.95, making them $19.99 each.
Over on Amazon, these vacuum seal kits are selling for $59.99 and there appears to be very little competition from other sellers.
This is a good sign. Based on this information, I could sell the SmartVac 20 for more than double the wholesale price. That’s a profit margin of more than 100%.
Everything suggests that this will be an easy item to sell on Amazon for a profit.
It might take you a little longer to find a great product to sell on Amazon or eBay, but using this method will certainly speed up the process.
By knowing which categories to avoid on the PulseTV website I was able to zero in on potentially profitable products more quickly.
Some people spend hours, days, week, and months trying to find the perfect product. It took less than 10 minutes to find the SmartVac 20.
The secret is in knowing which categories to rule out from the outset so you can focus on niches that you know are going to be the most profitable and competitive on Amazon, eBay, or whichever online platform you choose.
That way you won’t waste hours of your precious time browsing thousands of products on suppliers’ websites.
You want to think outside the box and work your way through the funnel until you have a product that you will know will be easy to sell.
If you’ve used this method to find a great product or you have some hot tips of your own, let us know in the comments.
Read more: salehoo.com