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How to Sell on Amazon Without Inventory

Have you ever thought about selling goods on Amazon without a physical inventory?

You’re not alone! With the rise of online shopping since the pandemic, many entrepreneurs saw massive success from capitalizing on consumers’ preferences for remote buying.

This online purchasing trend shows no signs of stopping. So today, we’ll show you how to sell on Amazon without inventory so you can start earning money minus the storage hassle.

Why You Should Consider Selling on Amazon Without Inventory

Setting up an online business on Amazon is profitable to anybody who has products that people want to buy. It doesn’t have to be practical, and your selling opportunities are limitless.

Here are some excellent reasons to consider Amazon as your business’s debut platform:

  • Global Reach: Amazon is an e-commerce giant with millions of customers worldwide. Hosting your products here helps you tap into its vast buyer pool.
  • Centralized Inventory Management: Amazon offers an all-inclusive fulfillment method that saves time in logistics. This allows an individual seller to focus on marketing the products to boost sales.
  • 24/7 Customer Service: You won’t have to worry about addressing every customer’s queries and complaints since Amazon handles your support.
  • Low to No Startup Costs: You are not required to produce goods in bulk. You’ll pay storage fees, which are more affordable than warehouse rental and maintenance.

Problems With Selling on Amazon Without Inventory

Online selling isn’t for everyone, even with the help of a global eCommerce site. Of course, this shouldn’t stop you from starting one.

However, you should consider the following drawbacks when selling on Amazon without inventory and rethink your business plan before investing time and effort.

Lesser Control for Product Pricing and Fees

Whether you use the FBA (Fulfillment by Amazon) or FBM (Fulfillment by Merchant) model, you won’t have absolute control over product prices and fees.

Product pricing often depends on market behavior and other factors, limiting your business’s scalability.

Limited Production Flexibility

Sourcing physical products from third-party sellers gives you less room to improve them. You’ll be solely tied to the manufacturer’s product standards.

You won’t have a say in its design, which can be frustrating, especially if you know how to produce it better.

No Real-Time Product Quality Check

You don’t have the product on hand, so you can’t check for defects and potential errors in order details.

This increases your business’s exposure to bad publicity if customers complain about the product upon receipt.

High-Level Competition

There’s high demand for online products but so is the supply. With many startups and individual entrepreneurs jumping into the bandwagon, building your business name isn’t a walk in the park. It can take time, with no hundred percent guarantee of success.

What You’ll Need to Sell on Amazon Without Inventory

Once you’ve decided to go all-in with Amazon selling, it’s time to get your tools in order.

Here are the essential must-haves for your online shop with Amazon.

  • Product: Be specific with the products you want to sell on your Amazon shop. Create categories if you’re selling multiple items, and identify their features and price range.
  • Preferred Selling Plan: Choose between Amazon’s Individual Plan ($0.99 per item sold) or Professional Plan ($39.99 monthly). Both are subject to add-on selling fees set by Amazon.
  • Amazon Seller Account: Although your personal account works just fine, it’s ideal to set up a separate seller account complete with your business details.
  • Selling Strategy: Identify how you can source your products. Do you want to be a reseller, a brand owner, or both?
  • Startup Budget: While setting up a no-inventory shop on Amazon requires a minimal budget, you’ll need to cover the costs of the initial orders, third-party entities, and extra fees.
  • Amazon Seller Central Access: Download the Amazon Seller App to manage your online business on the go. This tool allows you to track sales, create listings, respond to customers, and more.

What to Sell on Amazon Without Inventory

Hiring third-party inventory solutions takes care of your business logistics, but if you want to sell products that don’t need any physical space, digital goods are an excellent starting point.

Here are some top options for beginners and seasoned online sellers.


Anyone can write a book. The only key requirement is your knowledge of a topic.

You can choose between fiction or nonfiction and play around with different genres. If words are not your forte, you can go for picture books.

This is an excellent way to explore your creativity or share your unique expertise with others.

Why This Product Sells Well

With over 30 million active Kindle users in the U.S., reading eBooks as an alternative to physical books is evident.

Mobile users prefer reading books in digital format because of portability, lower cost, and the ability to take notes using a single device.


From AI tools and mobile apps to website templates, software creation can be your lucrative source of passive income.

You can craft productivity apps, games, messaging apps, or create eCommerce templates for other online businesses.

Why This Product Sells Well

Software programs make things easier. They can automate repetitive tasks and help users organize their days better.

Online businesses without a web design team can shop online to acquire beautiful website templates.

Downloadable Prints

This includes greeting cards, posters, and any digital art people want to download and print on their products.

You don’t have to be a professional graphic designer to start selling these, though that is a huge advantage.

Online design tools like Canva and Photoshop can help you create beautiful designs in minutes.

Why This Product Sells Well

Print-on-demand products are the go-to options for individuals and business owners who want to print original designs but don’t want to spend time creating them.

Downloadable prints are used during special occasions, gatherings, brand publicity, gifts, and more.

How To Sell on Amazon Without Inventory: Step-By-Step Instructions

You don’t have to have a background in business to start selling on Amazon.

Here are the steps to help you get started:

Step 1: Do Market Research and Decide on a Product to Sell

Unless you create the product or sell something you already own, you must decide what items you want to sell.

This includes going online and searching for in-demand products across different age groups. Begin by choosing a category and looking at Amazon’s bestseller list.

Interest forums are also excellent sources of ideas. The key is to find a common point between your interest and profit potential.

The more interested you are in the product, the easier to market them online.

Step 2: Identify Your Selling Strategy

Do you want to resell products or be a brand owner? Your choice will define most succeeding steps, so you must sort this out firsthand.

If you resell, you only need to find an existing product that’s popular with consumers and sell them on your Amazon shop.

Your focus becomes creating a clear marketing objective to build unique product publicity that resonates with your target market.

Step 3: Open an Amazon Seller Account

Set a separate business email and use it to sign up for your Amazon Seller account.

You’ll need to provide your credit card details, government ID, tax information, phone number, and the bank account where Amazon can send you sales proceeds.

Step 4: Select a Fulfillment Method

This refers to how you handle the product from ordering to delivery. Here are four of the most popular options.

Amazon FBA

This is you letting Amazon handle all your business’s logistics needs. You only need to send your products to their warehouse, and they’ll work on sorting, storing, and shipping them to buyers.

Amazon Prime Status is guaranteed for all products sold using this method, a huge plus to increasing leads.

Check this guide to starting an Amazon FBA business to help you with the basics.

Dropshipping Model

This one’s a part of Amazon FBM and the fastest way to get started. You don’t need to own or get your hands on the product.

You partner with a manufacturer and focus on marketing their goods using your Amazon profile.

Once someone buys from you, the manufacturer ships it to the buyer. However, you’re in charge of responding to complaints about any product defect.

Third-party Logistics

This option is a great alternative if you don’t want Amazon to handle your logistics. You ship your goods to the third-party service, and they handle the rest.

An advantage will be increased freedom in management, but starting cost for this option might be more expensive than what FBA offers.

Digital Products

Do you love creating digital art and printables? This method is ideal for anyone with a knack for graphics and design.

You create art prints that people can download on their devices—no need for physical storage. The web is your space.

Sellers for this method can sign up for Merch by Amazon, the company’s print-on-demand arm.

Buyers can then order digital copies of your design to be printed on coffee mugs, t-shirts, phone cases, etc.

Step 5: Find a Reliable Supplier or Professional Seller

If you choose the FBM method, your priority is to partner with trusted suppliers who have been in business for a while.

If not, they must show you tangible proof of positive customer experience.

Remember that your Amazon reputation is tied to their products, so be meticulous when

Step 6: Create an Amazon Listing Using Seller Central

Log in to Seller Central and provide the technical details of your product. This includes GTIN, ISBN, SKU, price, product condition (new or used), available stocks, and shipping options.

Use this step to optimize your product by adding the brand, category, description, and images. This helps buyers find your products easier while shopping through Amazon.

Step 7: Market Your Products

Leverage the power of social media and craft marketing strategies that make your products more attractive.

If you’re a reseller, study what your competitors are doing in promoting similar products and strategize how to promote them better.

Things to Consider When Selling on Amazon Without Inventory

Online business has its own set of rules, and these factors can impact your business’s sustainability.

1. Startup Budget

While selling on Amazon without inventory costs less than renting an entire warehouse, you’d still need to spend on the initial costs of buying raw materials, FBA storage fees, commissions, etc.

2. Quality of Product Manufacturer or Producer

Partnering with manufacturers who follow strict health and quality compliance is imperative to earn consumer trust.

3. Extra Costs

Working with third-party entities can entail hidden fees not disclosed during your initial agreement. Before fully committing to a partnership, you’ll need to get the specifics of any upfront investments and overhead costs.

4. Marketing Strategy

Pick a platform popular for your target audience where you can promote your products.

5. Third-Party Fulfillment Center

Be vigilant in choosing third-party logistics or shipping solutions. Go with entities with a solid record of fulfilling storage and delivery services.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is There a Minimum Number of Physical Stock to Start Selling on Amazon?

There are no required minimum physical items to start selling on Amazon. You sell at your own pace. As long as you’ve set up your fulfillment method, either FBA or FBM, you control the number of items you want to sell.

Does Amazon Take Care of All the Logistics for My Products?

If you use Amazon FBA, then yes, the company takes care of the logistics. This also includes customer service and handling returned items.

You only have to consider storage and FBA fees, which can vary depending on the number of items you store and the product category.

Similar Tutorials to Check Out

Here are other guides for popular businesses to try this 2023:

  • Rental Arbitrage Business:Try this if you want to rent out a place for travelers but don’t have your own property. You rent a place long-term, then let others use it for a shorter time.
  • Online Business: If you want to bring your business online but don’t know how to get started, this guide offers tips and FYIs to cover all the basics. 
  • Import Export Business: Do you want to be a third-party logistics service? This article walks you through the essentials to help you decide if you want to invest in this business long-term. 

Wrapping Up

Jump-starting your eCommerce business with Amazon doesn’t have to be overwhelming.

With its no-inventory model, you can enjoy global reach with a minimal startup budget and no warehouse maintenance cost.

Do you want to build your online business on Amazon? Which fulfillment method do you prefer? Let’s hear them in the comments!

Leave a Comment

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