Did you know that you don’t need to spend a single dollar to research a product to sell on Amazon, as well as all the associated costs of getting those products for sale with Amazon FBA?
It’s true, in fact, these free tools and sites are so good for product inspiration and cost research that you can come up with fantastic product ideas and not spend any money if you so choose.
Sure, software offerings out in the world do some pretty amazing things and can help streamline running your business and help with product research, but if you are willing to put in a bit of work, you can do it all for free and gain a lot of valuable knowledge in the process.
So, in this post, we will cover different aspects of product creation and discovery and the various free tools and sites you can use to achieve those ends.
Estimate a Product’s Monthly Sales - Jungle Scout Estimator
One of the absolute BEST free tools available to everyone is Jungle Scout’s Amazon Sales Estimator.
This magic tool will let you predict with a fair bit of accuracy just how many sales any particular product on Amazon is selling on a monthly basis.
Just pop in the BSR (Best Seller’s Rank) of a product and the product category, and Jungle Scout will estimate how many sales that product gets every 30 days.
Multiply 30 by the retail price of the product, and you will get an idea of how much revenue that product can generate per month, what your potential monthly sales volume can be, and other considerations like the logistics of selling that product.
Truly an invaluable resource for product research, as knowing the potential monthly sales volume of a product helps immensely in planning.
Estimate Fulfillment and Storage Fees - Amazon Revenue Calculator
Another free tool and this one comes directly from Amazon, allows you to see just how much Amazon will charge in referral fees, fulfillment/shipping fees, and storage fees for a particular product.
All you have to do is open up the Amazon Revenue Calculator, and find an ASIN similar enough to the product you’re wanting to sell (you’re looking for a size/weight and product category match) as a placeholder.
Put that ASIN in the calculator, and Amazon will let you know exactly how much they charge to fulfill the product, what the storage fee is for a single unit, and how much they take as a referral fee.
This knowledge will help you in estimating how much you’ll need to charge to see a decent Return on Investment for your new product.
Find Individual Unit Cost + A Manufacturer - Alibaba.com
Alibaba is an online marketplace of various factories, manufacturers, and sellers, and one of its core functions is to connect to potential companies that can bring your product idea to market.
While not necessarily a tool, Alibaba is your main resource for finding out if your product can even be made and what your per-unit cost will be.
Search through various companies, check their catalog, and reach out to them to see which is best for making your potential product.
General Amazon Product Research - Amazon.com
One of the best places to help conduct product research for a potential Amazon product coincidentally is Amazon itself.
Here are just a few ways you can utilize Amazon.com for product research:
See hot items within a product category
Amazon has different lists within each product category for what’s “hot” currently.
They separate these lists into 5 types:
- Best sellers within a category
- New releases within a category
- “Movers & Shakers” by category
- Most Wished for by category
- Gift ideas by category
For the purposes of product research, best sellers and new releases will be the best for the information you’re seeking, while the remaining 3 are good, just not as helpful.
Best Sellers by category
Best sellers are exactly that, the products within a category that has the highest daily sales volume.
Amazon describes it as “Our most popular products based on sales.”
This section is to get a good gauge for what’s popular within a product category, and you can draw inspiration from the choices here for your potential product idea.
You can even use this to weed out ideas that are “too popular” and not niche enough where you will have to supply huge volumes of product, sacrifice margin, and advertise a lot just to start matching these established products.
New Releases by Category
The New Releases list is my favorite list from Amazon, as it shows you the newest products that are doing well on Amazon.
It is described by Amazon as “Our best-selling new and future releases.”
This is a good way to catch a glimpse of what’s trending within your product category and the way things are going.
Products on Amazon are always “evolving” over time, and certain features come to be expected of newer released products, so you would do well to study these products to make sure your offering isn’t missing something vital
“Movers and Shakers” by category
The Movers & Shakers list is described by Amazon as “Our biggest gainers in sales rank over the past 24 hours. Updated hourly.”
This is certainly an interesting list from Amazon, however, I don’t believe it gives you valuable data.
There are many reasons why a product would make a jump in Best Sellers Rank suddenly, and they don’t always involve circumstances that will aid you in your product research.
Most Wished For by Category
Amazon describes Most Wished For as “Our products most often added to Wishlists and Registries.”
Another nice list, but doesn’t really help for product research purposes, as you should be caring about what sells rather than what people are considering buying.
Gift Ideas by Category
Amazon describes gift ideas as “Our most popular products ordered as gifts.”
This list is useful, however, I would actually use this for the purpose of finding products you might want to avoid.
The reason you might want to avoid making highly gifted products is that they are subject to seasonality, especially around the holidays, and for a lot of sellers, managing seasonality is a headache you would rather avoid.
Use the autofill search
Whenever you start typing within the search bar in Amazon, you will see it start to quickly autofill your search query, estimating what you are looking for.
While this seems like a nice-to-have feature, it’s actually a valuable tool for product research.
Each search term that Amazon autofills within the search bar is something people have searched for before, indicating some kind of demand for that keyword.
If you’re thinking of making a specific product, testing out different keywords to see what auto-fill provides can clue you into unique features that others may not yet be offering.
Let’s look at an example when I type “garlic peeler” into Amazon search:
As you can see here, people are interested in a lot of different features and kinds, things like:
- Silicone tube-based garlic peelers
- A garlic peeling machine of some kind
- A combo peeler and mincer
- An electric version
- A roller (likely the silicone tube style with a different keyword)
- A combo peeler and press
There is a lot of valuable information in this search alone, as you can see different forms of demand when it comes to garlic peelers, and you can adapt these keywords to your future product.
See how other products set their listings up
Each product category has its own way to present its images to potential customers.
Look at products similar to the one you’re trying to make, and gather some information based on what you see.
- What do products similar to your idea focus on in their images?
- Are the images lifestyle focused? Feature focused?
- Do the products you’re looking at put a high amount of effort into images with actual photoshoots of the product or are they lazier stock photos with the product photoshopped in?
- Is there anything you could do better or more unique to catch a visitor’s eye over what exists?
With this kind of information, you can help determine what kind of branding you’re going to go for, and what the bare minimum of quality your listing will need to compete with others in the space you intend to enter.
See Price History of a Product - CamelCamelCamel
A long-running website, CamelCamelCamel does price tracking for Amazon products from their launch all the way to the present.
This tool is great for product research as you can see the price a product starts at, if the seller has consistently dropped it over time, or if it has been able to maintain rank and sales with a steady price.
Knowing how competitors price their products helps you know how you need to price your own.
Estimate Sea Freight Prices - Freightos
This one is a bit unique, but also very important.
Products come in all shapes and sizes, so that will be a big consideration when you are ultimately trying to ship your product to the US.
Sea freight can be a complicated game, however, there is a website that will allow you to create an account and browse sea rates based on almost any criteria.
It’s called Freightos.
Freightos is amazing because you can enter all the parameters of a potential shipment, including things like product origin city, and the final destination of the product, if you want to do a partial container or full container, you can even check air shipping rates if you like.
Once you put in your parameters, it will give you a list of freight forwarders and how much they will potentially charge for every aspect of the product's journey, from all the formwork down to local delivery.
It’s a really amazing tool, and what’s more amazing is that the rates end up being fairly accurate once everything is done, rarely requiring adjustments once everything is delivered.
Gauge Demand - Google Trends & Keyword Tools
While Google has nothing to do with Amazon, they are both search engines.
Since they both share this similarity, and Amazon’s search is almost as huge as Google’s, there’s significant overlap in the search data of both sites.
So much so that if you were to use a tool to determine keyword volume for Google, it would match closely to Amazon (of course, with the volume of the searches slightly adjusted).
Maybe not the best time to get into fidget spinners.
Therefore, if you use tools like Google Trends or any various free keyword tools on the Internet, you can get a good idea of what’s got a high search volume within the product landscape and help determine if the product you're interested in making is trending up or down.
There you have it, with this guide you can conduct a lot of product research, and get some hard data on pricing, shipping, fees, fulfillment, what’s trending, what’s popular, and what your competitors are doing, all for free.
If you utilize these sites and tools properly, you can launch a product that has a much higher chance of success than if you were to go into a category with little research and data to back it up.