Navigating the intricacies of selling on Amazon Canada can be overwhelming for beginners. While the registration process itself is pretty straightforward, sellers must get a good grasp of how the marketplace works, what the platform guidelines are, and what specific local laws they have to comply with.
If you’re new to Amazon, this comprehensive step-by-step guide will walk you through the process of registering and selling on Amazon Canada. We’ve collated all relevant information to arm you with the knowledge you need to set up your Amazon business and maximize your sales potential.
Without a doubt, Amazon dominates the world of eCommerce. In Canada alone, Amazon is projected to account for 41% of all retail eCommerce sales this 2023. That means more than CAD$4 in every CAD$10 spent on retail eCommerce will go through the Amazon Marketplace. With this huge chunk of sales, it comes as no surprise that Amazon.ca tops the list of online stores by net sales in the country. This makes Amazon Canada a lucrative platform for online sellers.
Amazon Canada operates as a localized marketplace tailored to the Canadian market. While it operates under the Amazon brand, it is distinct from other marketplaces when it comes to pricing, product selection, and other areas. Here are some features that differentiate it from other Amazon marketplaces.
While there may be similarities and shared features between different Amazon marketplaces, each marketplace is tailored to the needs and preferences of its respective country or region.
Before we delve further, here’s some key information that every seller on Amazon Canada should know.
Amazon makes it easier for sellers to manage their business by providing them with the tools and resources they need. Amazon makes all these accessible through a dedicated platform, Seller Central.
Seller Central serves as a central hub for account management, product listings, inventory management, performance tracking, customer communication, product promotions, and advertising. Virtually everything you need to run your Amazon business is in Seller Central. When you register as a seller, you gain access to Seller Central and all the resources it offers.
To manage your Amazon business activities, download the Amazon Seller App available to Canadian users. Through this app, you can access your Seller Central account and manage orders and customer communication while on the go. You can also view real-time updates and monitor sales performances more conveniently.
Like other Amazon marketplaces, Amazon.ca offers two selling plans: Individual and Professional. In Canada, the monthly subscription fee for the Professional plan is CAD$29.99. There is no subscription fee for Individual plans, but sellers have to shell out CAD$1.49 for every item they sell.
For all sellers, Amazon charges a selling fee for items sold on the platform. The selling fee is an aggregate of different fees relevant to each product category, seller plan, and other factors. Here are some of the usual fees included:
Note that the computation of referral fees and the total amount deposited to a seller's account varies depending on the subscription plan, product categories, and other factors. Understanding these fees can help you accurately calculate your costs so you can set competitive prices.
To register as an Amazon seller, you need an Amazon account. Log in to your account and go to the Amazon Seller Central homepage. Click on “Register now” or “Start selling” to start the seller account creation process.
Start by selecting the right seller plan for your needs. If you anticipate selling more than 40 items per month and want access to advanced selling tools and programs, go for the Professional Plan. If you're just starting or have a low sales volume, the Individual Plan may be more suitable.
Pro Tip: If you own a brand, consider enrolling in Amazon's Brand Registry to personalize your brand, protect your trademarks, and access more advertising options.
To complete the registration process, you will be required to key in some personal and business information. These include your full name, business name, address, and phone number. You will also need to provide a government-issued national ID, tax information, bank account and routing numbers, and a chargeable credit card. Make sure you have these details ready so the registration process goes smoothly.
Amazon Canada offers two primary fulfillment methods: Fulfillment by Merchant (FBM) and Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA). With FBM, you have full control over inventory management and product shipping. You ship your products directly to your buyers but follow shipping rates predetermined by Amazon based on the product category and shipping service chosen by the customer. On the other hand, Amazon takes care of all order fulfillment processes when you choose FBA.
With over a dozen fulfillment centers spread across Ontario, Alberta, and British Columbia, Amazon allows you to leverage its extensive fulfillment network and infrastructure to scale your business efficiently. Still, it is important to evaluate the costs and logistics requirements to determine which option aligns best with your business.
Pro Tip: If you choose FBM, utilize Amazon's Buy Shipping tool to access shipping credits and streamline the shipping process with their trusted network of shipping partners.
Once your account is set up, explore the Seller Central dashboard. This is your central hub for managing your Amazon Canada business. Familiarize yourself with the various features, settings, and reports available to monitor your sales, inventory, and customer feedback.
As an Amazon Canada seller, it's important to comply with legal requirements and regulations. Stay informed about tax obligations, product safety regulations, and any other applicable laws related to your products or business operations in Canada. Being compliant ensures a smooth selling experience and builds trust with your customers.
The number of monthly visits to Amazon Canada is steadily growing. In April 2023, there were an estimated 159.8 million visits. To get your products to this vast market, it’s time to start selling and making your mark on the platform.
Selecting the right products is key to your success on Amazon Canada. Conduct thorough product research using various tools and techniques. Consider factors such as demand, competition, profitability, and market trends to identify profitable product opportunities in the Canadian market.
If you are selling a product that is already on Amazon, simply match the existing listing. However, if you are the first seller, you will need to create a new listing and provide more product information. This includes product identifiers such as Global Trade Item Number (GTIN). Depending on the specific product, you may need to acquire a UPC, ISBN, or EAN.
You also need to provide other details such as SKU, product title, description, images, search terms, and relevant keywords. Optimize your listing with a compelling title (200 characters max), high-quality images (500x500 or 1000x1000 pixels), a bulleted list of the key features and benefits, variations (colors, sizes), and a detailed description.
If you're on the Individual plan, you can only list your products one at a time. If you're on the Professional plan, you can use inventory management or bulk uploading tools to list products in large batches.
Once listed, your products become available to both B2C and B2B customers. To maximize your growth potential, you must monitor your performance and adapt your strategies for continuous optimization. Monitor performance metrics on your Seller Central dashboard and address issues promptly. Utilize tools like the Automate Pricing Tool to stay competitive. You can also leverage marketplace management platforms like Threecolts, which offer efficient solutions for managing your Amazon business effectively.
As an Amazon Canada seller, you have access to various optional programs that can enhance your selling experience and open new opportunities. These programs provide additional benefits and services tailored to specific needs. Let's explore some of these optional programs and what they offer.
The Amazon Renewed Program is designed for sellers who offer refurbished or certified pre-owned products. By participating in this program, you can showcase your renewed products to customers, leveraging the trust and confidence associated with the Amazon Renewed brand. Take advantage of this program to reach customers seeking high-quality refurbished products.
Amazon Vine is a marketing program that allows select Amazon.ca customers to receive certain products for review. Dubbed Vine Voices, these customers provide independent and unbiased feedback on the products they have accepted for review. Participating in the Amazon Vine program can help generate authentic customer feedback and boost your product's visibility.
FBA is a comprehensive fulfillment solution offered by Amazon. Aside from handling order packing and shipping, Amazon offers other services under FBA. These include the Amazon Partnered Carrier Program, FBA Export, FBA Subscribe & Save, and Multi-Channel Fulfillment.
Lab Central connects sellers with accredited third-party labs that conduct product testing according to Amazon’s specific requirements. These labs generate test reports and provide certifications when necessary. Take note though that sellers are responsible for paying the labs directly for any costs associated with product testing.
If you create handcrafted products, the Amazon Handmade program is an excellent opportunity to showcase your craftsmanship. Once approved, you'll enjoy benefits such as a waiver of the Professional selling fee and access to a dedicated marketplace for handcrafted goods. Referral fees for sellers under the Handmade program are a flat percentage rate of 15%. With Amazon Handmade, you can reach a wide customer base looking for unique and artisanal products.
The Prime Day program offers eligible sellers the chance to highlight their branded products during the Prime Day event and throughout the Prime Day Period. By participating in this program, you can increase customer awareness and drive sales for your new items or special edition products. You’ll need to apply and get approval to participate in this program. Moreover, your products must adhere to specific requirements to be featured.
Hyperwallet is a third-party payment service provider that works with Amazon to facilitate local currency disbursements. With Hyperwallet, your Amazon sales are sent to your Hyperwallet deposit account from where you can transfer them directly to your local bank. To sign up for Hyperwallet, you can apply for a deposit account using your Amazon Seller credentials. It's important to note that Hyperwallet operates independently from Amazon Canada, so you should carefully review its terms and conditions before proceeding.
To set up Hyperwallet on your Amazon seller account, go to Seller Central > Settings > Account Info > Payment Information > Bank Account Information. Click on Replace deposit method or Assign and select Canada from the bank location drop-down menu. Enter your Hyperwallet deposit account details to use the service.
By exploring and utilizing these optional programs, you can enhance your selling experience, reach a broader audience, and streamline various aspects of your business on Amazon Canada. Choose the programs that align with your goals and requirements to maximize your success as a seller.
Aside from Amazon Canada’s platform policies and community guidelines, sellers must also comply with existing Canadian laws and regulations. Here are some that are relevant to Amazon Canada sellers.
Amazon prioritizes customer safety and aims to provide a wide selection of products that meets high-quality standards. All Amazon sellers are required to adhere to guidelines on product safety and compliance. To ensure compliance, Amazon offers tools like the Manage Your Compliance (MYC) dashboard, where sellers can add compliance documents, appeal requests, and access compliance services. Use these compliance tools to prevent issues, such as blocked listings or account deactivation.
Products listed on Amazon.ca must comply with Canadian federal and provincial packaging and labeling requirements. These include the Consumer Packaging and Labelling Act, Textile Labelling Act, and Precious Metals Marking Act. There are also packaging and labeling regulations related to medical devices, pest control products, cosmetics, and other products.
Sellers are responsible for complying with all applicable import requirements for the items they import. This includes meeting customs regulations, paying duties and taxes, and fulfilling any additional requirements associated with imported products.
These are just a few of the laws and regulations that govern Amazon Canada sellers. By ensuring compliance, sellers can maintain a strong partnership with Amazon and provide customers with safe, reliable products. Stay updated on the requirements and regulations related to your products and transactions to avoid any legal or operational complications.
Achieving success on Amazon Canada requires a combination of strategic planning, diligent execution, and continuous adaptation. As you navigate this dynamic marketplace, focus on understanding your target audience, optimizing your product listings, and providing exceptional customer service. Stay informed about industry trends and Amazon's policies to ensure you adapt and optimize your strategies effectively. Remember, success on Amazon Canada is within your reach if you commit to learning, refining your approach, and delivering value to your customers. Get started on your journey with Threecolts’ full suite of tools today!