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Running an Amazon FBA Business – Don’t forget these tasks & SOPs

Published Categorized as Amazon FBA

If you’re running an amazon FBA business you’d be forgiven for losing track of the endless list of tasks you (or your Virtual Assistants) need to get done on a daily, weekly and monthly basis. After all, running an Amazon business is difficult because of the volume of tasks and the level of attention you need to pay to your Seller Central Account.

Use this blog posts as a reminder for you or your VA, or download the Cheat Sheet PDF and upload it to your task management software.

These tasks will keep your Amazon Virtual Assistant busy whilst delivering value!

Running an Amazon Business – Tasks to remember and tools to use

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Day to day tasks for running an Amazon business – FBA Cheat Sheet

Here’s the list of tasks you’ll need on your to do list as an Amazon FBA Seller – think of it as your Amazon FBA cheat sheet!

Respond to Amazon product reviews (positive and negative)

  • Monitor the placement of reviews on listings globally
  • Respond to reviews
  • Handle customer service issues that arise from product reviews

You can do this yourself, but you may ask yourself why am i running an amazon business? Is it to answer snotty reviews from ungrateful customers? Probably not.

Get a process in place and hand this one off to a trained team member who can do a great job of pleasing your customers. There are so many good team members for hire on that there’s really no excuse.

Managing seller feedback in each marketplace (remove negative feedback and handle customer service)

  • Monitor for negative feedback
  • Request removal when possible
  • Handle customer service issues that arise from seller feedback
  • Request people who’ve left a product review as seller feedback to leave a product review on the product listing

Same goes for managing seller feedback. Get a process in place and hand this one off to a trained team member who can do a great job of pleasing your customers. Employ yourself a part time team member on

Managing customer service email requests

  • Monitor customer service messages
  • Construct responses and manage the problems through to solution

Ensuring your listings aren’t losing sales rank due to hijackers or resellers

  • Monitor number of sellers on listings
  • Send warnings to resellers
  • Purchase products to remove resellers
  • Raise cases and do test buys of products

Optimise your Amazon PPC Campaigns

  • Optimise bids
  • Expand campaigns with new keywords
  • Eliminate unprofitable keywords
  • Double down on profitable keywords
  • Measure and track performance

If you’re optimising your Amazon Pay Per Click Advertising, you’re best off using a structured and consistent process along with a tool like PPC Entourage. (affiliate link)

PPC is a key component of driving traffic to your Amazon listing, neglecting it is a serious risk.

Ensure Amazon isn’t overcharging you for fulfilment in each marketplace

  • Monitoring dimension, weight and fee changes
  • Doing analysis when a change is detected to see if a case should be raised
  • Creating a case clearly
  • Communicating on the issue, providing evidence etc.

Monitoring detailed data like this is not something you want to be doing manually. Especially not across multiple Amazon marketplaces.

Helium 10 is great for monitoring changes, but you still need to have a clear idea of what you SHOULD be getting charged for Fulfilment.

When monitoring changes with Helium 10 you get notifications within Helium 10 but you can also configure email and SMS alerts for certain issues.

Ensure Amazon isn’t overcharging you for storage fees in each marketplace

  • Monitoring dimension changes vs actual dimensions
  • Doing analysis when a change is detected to see if case should be raised
  • Creating a case clearly
  • Communicating on the issue, providing evidence etc.

Once again, Helium 10 is great for monitoring changes in product dimensions as measured and maintained by Amazon. You again, need to have a firm grasp of what your product dimensions actually are, otherwise monitoring changes is pointless.

Ensure Amazon isn’t overcharging you for referral fees in each marketplace (different categories have different percentage rates)

  • Monitor changes to referral fees
  • Doing analysis when a change is detected to see if case should be raised
  • Creating a case clearly
  • Communicating on the issue, providing evidence etc.

This is also something Helium 10 can monitor changes in. Changes are less frequent in this area, but the impact can be huge. It can meant the difference between profitable sales and losses, so it’s important to know what you should be charged and monitor it to make sure it doesn’t change.

Ensure Amazon is giving you a reimbursement for stock that they lose

  • Use a service – otherwise you’re going to chase your tail

Simply put, this is labour intensive at best. So handing over to a service who operate on a “no-win no-fee” basis is definitely the way to go.

Refunds Manager have long been a solid solution for our business. OK they do take a 25% fee (25% of the recovered cash) but in reality, I would raise 10% of the cases they do and miss out on more than 50% of the available refunds without them. It’s therefore a complete win for us.

Arranging Inspections with your suppliers

  • Communicating the inspection requirements specific to the order
  • Reviewing the inspection report
  • Communicating with your supplier about rectifying issues and signing off the shipment

We love a good interface and we love it when our inspectors have great records of previous inspections. QIMA, previously Asia Inspection have always been really responsive and they have a great online platform where inspections can be setup with ease.

You can use their premade checklists and customise them for your products. You can also use previous inspections as templates for new inspections, which is a huge time saver.

Arranging shipping with your forwarder(s) from China

  • Setting up shipments on Amazon Seller Central
  • Getting quotations for the shipment based on a packing list
  • Booking the shipping
  • Providing documentation to forwarder
  • Providing labels and instructions to supplier
  • Paying your forwarder

Shipping is where things can all go very wrong, particularly with the complex communication that’s required between so many different parties.

If you’re looking to make this task easier, clearer and reduce complexity I’d strongly advise using Flexport. Their visual dashboard that allows you to see uploaded documentation that’s been shared, fully traceable quote and shipping schedules is second to none.

Arranging shipping with your 3PL to Amazon (Europe and/or USA)

  • Setting up shipments on Amazon
  • Setting up shipments / sending instructions via software
  • Providing documentation, labels and instructions to your 3PL
  • Paying your 3PL for services and storage

If you’re using a storage facility as well as Amazon FBA in the country where you’re selling through Amazon, you’ll also be co-ordinating shipments from your 3rd Party Logistics provider. They’ll each have their own systems, but try and find one who uses some decent cloud based software like Shipstation.

Monthly and/or Quarterly VAT Returns (Europe)

  • Uploading and analysing documents to calculate required VAT (or getting someone else to do it)
  • Sanity checking the VAT calculations
  • Paying each VAT Return (in the case of Europe, UK, DE, FR, IT, ES, CZ and PL all need to be analysed, calculated and paid)

If you’re running your VAT accounts in the UK it’s worth investing in an accountancy package like Xero. It’ll take away a tonne of hassle and ultimately help construct your end of year accounts.

If you’re on the Pan-EU programme, it’s definitely worth getting your VAT calculated and submitted by a third party provider such as Simply VAT.

Monthly and/or Quarterly Sales Tax Returns (USA)

  • Liaising with the sales tax agent on a monthly basis / operating a sales tax software and interpreting the outputs
  • Sanity checking the sales tax calculations
  • Arranging the wire transfer to each tax authority (or processing to your agent who then distributes the funds)

I’m not even going to suggest you do this yourself. Unlike VAT in Europe, you need to have some serious legal understanding to do this job correctly. Hand your sales taxes over to an agent who can actually advise you, keep you on the straight and narrow and prevent you from accumulating huge liabilities you didn’t even know existed.

There are software packages available, yes. They don’t come with the legal advice and ultimately they’re only as good as the operator.

Refining the review follow up email sequence

  • Monitor open rates and review rates
  • Adapt, test and improve copywriting, subject lines and sequences

Helium 10 have really been going for it with the addition of loads of new features over the past 12 months, absorbing tonnes of functionality into their core suite of tools.

Follow Up by Helium 10 is one of those tools. It’s as good as you’ll find in the market, and provides you with some metrics to help you refine and improve.

Reporting Amazon Sellers using your images in their product listings

  • Monitoring listings across all marketplaces for “image theft”
  • Filing DMCA Takedowns with Brand Support

Danny has a great resource on DMCA Take Downs over at Seller Sessions.

Reporting Copyright Infringement on eBay (VeRO Program)

SAAS like CrazyLister and JoeLister now pertain to be about helping Amazon Sellers sell THEIR inventory on eBay, but there have long been software on the market that basically scrapes Amazon, throws up a listing on eBay at a higher price and basically places an order with you on Amazon when someone purchases from them on eBay.

This is a bad customer experience to start with – they buy on eBay, it arrives in an Amazon box, they check Amazon and realised they could have got it cheaper. A large number then decide to return – even if they like the product, it’s the principle of being ripped off. You get higher returns rates and NO kudos with the end user.

You can’t stop people reselling your product (really), but you can report them for scraping your images.

So you need to:

  • Search eBay weekly for your brand name (misspellings too!)
  • Pull out a list of the listings (URLs) that are using your images
  • Report these listings to the VeRO Program on eBay (email address [email protected])
  • Rinse and repeat on a weekly basis

Once the “scrapers” see that they’re getting taken down repeatedly, it’s likely that they’ll eventually give up.

But there are always more douche bags! So once this task is complete, you’ll basically have created a “new opportunity” for new scrapers to enter the market. So you need to keep on top of this on a weekly basis.

Marketing Innovation

  • Read, listen and watch everything from the mainstream to the niche marketing tactics related to Amazon FBA
  • Design micro-tests, implement and capture data to decide what to scale
  • Research the tools, skills and processes required to scale and implement

Marketing innovation actually demands you do a little of everything whether it’s driving sales on Amazon or driving traffic to your website. This is where “the 80/20 rule” and “The One Thing” often get misinterpreted and applied in a way that’s damaging to your businesses long term success.

You need a reliable list of Amazon FBA Blogs for Amazon FBA Tips in 2020.

More tasks coming soon (Cheat Sheet Coming Soon)…

That’s not the end.

We’ll be adding more tasks and more tools over the coming weeks – plus the PDF Cheat Sheet including all of these tasks which you can hand over to your VA or simply copy and paste into your task tracking tool of choice, Asana for example.

By Ashley Pearce

I'm the founder of Future State Media, a "small-on-purpose" creator-focused SEO agency skilled in helping creators systematically generate traffic, build audiences and maximise their monetisation whilst staying true to their brand.