In the summer of 2014, I came across a few blog posts and podcast episodes focused on the topic of selling private label products through Amazon’s FBA program. I was aware of the possibility to sell private label products, and I was aware that third-party sellers could sell their products on Amazon, but I had never thought about the power that exists when these two are combined.
Mechanical Turk, or mTurk, isn’t necessarily what I would consider one of the best ways to make money on Amazon, but it is a way nonetheless. This crowdsourcing site has been around since before I started working from home in 2007 and allows workers to earn money completing small tasks. The majority of the things I did here back in the day were transcription, data entry, categorizing. It’s often mindless work that takes only a few minutes to complete. The pay reflects that. You aren’t going to make a livable wage on mTurk, but it can be a fun way to pass the time if nothing good is on television.
However, if you are looking to make money via Mechanical Turk, its easy to sign up and get started working. You likely won't make a ton of money doing these simple tasks that often only pay 10 cents or so, but it could be an easy way to save up some money to start a business. (I discussed saving up to start a business recently as a great way to go).
This is what I like to call “forcing a promotion.” You must be logged into your Amazon account before you add the items to your cart. This is the only way I’ve seen it work. Once you add the item(s) to your cart, you need to leave Amazon for a few days. Obviously, you want to use this trick when you don’t need an item quickly. After some time, you might get an email from Amazon saying you have items in your shopping cart and they could provide a promotion to you. I’ve saved 20% by waiting before, but it is hit or miss. It’s not 100% effective.
For most investors, watching a stock they own increase in value by more than 30% in one year would be reason to celebrate. However, Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN) isn’t just any company, and investors haven’t been used to a prolonged decline in the stock. Since late September, Amazon’s shares have struggled to get back to their old highs. Whether this is a short-term issue, or a longer-term consolidation remains to be seen. It’s exciting when Amazon gets into new markets, but investors should be equally happy that the company is addressing its profit margins in a meaningful way. Fulfillment costs consumed just under 15% of revenue last quarter, and Amazon is making moves to cut this expense. The first step was to order thousands of delivery vans. The most recent step is developing its own fleet of airplanes.