It’s no secret that pricing on Amazon is complex, and both Sellers and consumers can get lost quickly in the world of Amazon pricing.
To help, we created a short guide that has all the essential information about pricing on Amazon. In this post, we’ll explain how pricing on Amazon works and give some tips on how to get the most out of the platform. To learn more about how Amazon uses pricing as part of its overall strategy, check out the Complete Guide to Selling on Amazon in 2020.
How does Amazon pricing work?
Amazon pricing is tricky on all fronts, from how it charges Sellers to how product pricing works on the platform.
Amazon Seller pricing
There is an Amazon pricing structure for any Seller, regardless of how many products you have in your shop. Whether big or small, you can find an affordable way to sell items through the marketplace.
Amazon pricing structure
There are two ways to sell on Amazon: as a Professional or as an Individual. The Professional plan lets you sell an unlimited number of products for a $39.99 monthly fee. Individuals can sell on Amazon for $0.99 per item sold.
If you plan to sell more than 40 items each month, it makes more sense to purchase the Professional Seller plan. The Professional plan also makes sense if your items have low price points; $1 per product sold is an outrageous fee if you sell a product for $3.
The Professional plan also unlocks new categories for sales and has additional features that help you sell more products.
Amazon seller fees
If you think the costs of different selling plans on Amazon sound inexpensive, you’re not alone. Unfortunately, besides a monthly payment for your store (or payment per product for Individual Sellers), Amazon charges fees per product sold.
There are several fees that individuals and professionals must pay per item sold. These include:
Referral fees on each item sold: a percentage of the final price of a product sold
Shipping fees (which apply regardless of fulfillment method)
Amazon’s fee structure can get complicated, so it’s worth examining the Selling on Amazon Fee Schedule. If you are an FBA Seller, Amazon will charge you additional storage and fulfillment fees.
Amazon also has a calculator that can help you estimate your revenue, even with fees. Just enter the product name, UPC, ASIN, ISBN, or ASIN number and product details and you’ll get an estimate of how much revenue you can expect to earn.
Amazon price changes
Besides having a complicated pricing structure, Amazon also has a complicated pricing model. The company is a pioneer in dynamic pricing and makes over 250 million price changes every day. The average product’s price will change once every 10 minutes, making it difficult for Sellers and consumers to keep up.
Amazon price match
Amazon doesn’t have any price-match guarantee. If consumers find a product they’ve bought for a cheaper price online, there’s no way for them to ask Amazon to pay the difference in price.
This is mostly for practical reasons. Amazon used to have a policy like this, but as the market became more fluid, the policy became impossible to honor.
Amazon recognized that a dynamic market meant price match policies would become obsolete. With this knowledge, the company eliminated the policy in 2016.
Amazon price protection 2020
Amazon also doesn’t have any price protection policy. Consumers just have to trust that the company offers the lowest price on the market.
Amazon’s reputation for offering lowest prices isn’t unfounded though, and a 2018 study by Profitero found that Amazon was 13% cheaper than other major online retailers in the US. So even without this policy, consumers likely do receive some of the best deals on the platform.
Regardless of whether you’re a Seller or a consumer, Amazon becomes overwhelming fast. Luckily, technology can help both Sellers and consumers get a better understanding of Amazon and reap the best benefits of the marketplace. Whether you want to find the best deals or prices, or understand the landscape of Amazon, there’s a tool out there for you.
Amazon best Seller tools
If you’re a Professional Seller on Amazon, there are several types of tools that will make your job easier. In this section we’ll cover a few of the more important tools to have.
Amazon repricer tools
Repricing tools are for Amazon Sellers who want their products’ selling prices to update with the flow of the market. In other words, repricer tools are dynamic pricing tools built specifically for Amazon.
Since Amazon updates prices so frequently, this tool helps Sellers keep products relevant. A repricer will also help keep products in the Buy Box — the coveted space on any Amazon product listing page that’s responsible for an estimated 82% of Amazon sales.
Free repricer tools
Amazon doesn’t change prices for third party sellers, but it has a free proprietary repricer that can adjust prices for you. This tool is called “Automate Pricing.” You can find it under the Pricing tab in your Seller Central account.
Automate Pricing is easy to set up in just four steps. All you need to do is define the parameters of a rule, choose the SKUs where the rule applies, set minimum and maximum prices, then start repricing.
Amazon’s repricer has both pros and cons. Some pros include:
Free as long as you’re a professional seller
Helps increase sales (but at the expense of profits)
Does a great job of lowering prices, but not the best job at raising prices
Easy to use and set up
The cons of the repricer far outweigh the benefits, though. According to users, Amazon’s repricer tool is frustrating to use and limited in its capabilities. Some major cons are:
Only allows you to set up repricing rules on active SKUs
Limited customization on rules
Doesn’t account for fees and doesn’t help you calculate for fees
Doesn’t increase your price
Once you get the Buy Box, it stops repricing
The Automate Pricing tool is notoriously fickle. The video below is an honest review of Automate Pricing, and the overall sentiment is that Automate Pricing is more trouble than it’s worth.
Paid Amazon repricing tools
The best way for serious sellers to keep prices constantly fresh is to invest in a paid repricing tool.
Prices for a repricing service depend on several factors, including the number of products to be repriced and how frequently a Seller wants to reprice products.
All the rules of what to look for in a dynamic pricing solution apply when looking for repricing tools, and there are some services that are not worth the money. Some reputable market-leading paid repricing tools include:
RepricerExpress (prices range from €55 per month for 2,500 listings to €249 per month for 50,000+ listings)
Bqool (prices range from $25 per month for 1,000 listings to $100 per month for 10,000 listings and a faster repricing speed of 5 minutes)
Repricer (prices range from €69 per month for 2,500 products repriced hourly to €1,049 for 1,000,000 products repriced instantly)
Amazon competitive intelligence tools: How to find price drops on Amazon
Competitive intelligence is the backbone of any repricing tool because without intelligence your prices have no basis on the market.
Competitive intelligence tools gather the prices of your competitors on Amazon, showing you where there are dramatic price drops in the market. It should then deliver this information directly to you. With this information, you can make more thoughtful, data-driven decisions when you choose prices for your products in the store.
Many repricers will automatically gather competitive intelligence for you, but it’s worth asking different vendors if this feature is available.
Amazon best consumer tools
If you’re a consumer who wants to make sure that you always get the lowest price on Amazon, there are several tools you can use.
One of the best is CamelCamelCamel.com, which is a free price-watching tool for Amazon. This tool is available for consumers in Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the United States.
Amazon eBay price comparison software
Want to compare prices across the world’s two largest marketplaces? You can easily do that with sites like PricePirates. Search for the product you want to buy, and PricePirates will show you competing prices across platforms. PricePirates is available in the US, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, and the UK.
How to hack Amazon pricing
For Sellers, creating an Amazon pricing strategy and hacking your way into the Buy Box is no easy feat. But with hard work and effort, you can get your product into the Buy Box and keep it there.
There are tons of different strategies you can adopt to reprice on Amazon. One popular one is the high runner strategy, and it’s the approach that Amazon uses itself. In this strategy, you focus your efforts on the products that drive the most traffic (which are usually highly elastic), and offer a competitive price on those items to pull people to your page. Once a consumer is on your product listing, as long as the product is legitimate and matches their need, they will probably purchase it.
Additionally, once someone arrives on your listing, you can engage another pricing hack: bundling. Bundling helps increase the perceived value of your products, makes consumers more likely to purchase them, and helps move items through your store faster.
If you’re just starting as a Seller though and want to get into the Buy Box, the best strategy is to start small and slowly raise your prices by small increments. The goal is to attract buyers to your listing through a competitive price, earn reviews and good credit in the eyes of Amazon, then raise your price. This is a key part of the pricing-marketing mix.
Amazon repricing strategy
Developing a strategy comes down to your company goals. Here are 5 tips to build a successful repricing strategy:
Define your commercial objective
Build a pricing strategy (such as a charm pricing strategy)
Choose your pricing method
Establish pricing rules
Implement, test, and evaluate the strategy
Besides thinking of your own store’s strategy, consider Amazon’s strategy. The company strives to be the world’s most customer-centric company, and this philosophy dictates every strategic move the marketplace makes.
If you factor this philosophy into your overall Amazon strategy, it will pay off. So in addition to offering a competitive price, you should also work for quality products, fast shipment, and excellent customer service. You should also build a marketing strategy that sets you up for success and optimize your listing for Amazon's search algorithm.
Pricing on Amazon is important, but it’s not the end-all-be-all. Prices on Amazon constantly change, and it’s better to think of a product’s price as temporary rather than a fixed feature.
For Sellers, this means price is an important part of your overall strategy. It’s not the only thing Amazon considers when determining the winner of the Buy Box, but it’s a good way to tip the scales in your favor.
Grace Baldwin is a pricing and marketing specialist at Omnia Retail. Before Omnia, Grace gained experience in content management at EDIA and through a freelance content management business. She holds a B.A. in Government from Colby College.