Cars today are built to last a long time, but that means more maintenance and care. A growing number of car-owners are doing more of that work themselves, making auto parts an increasingly growing market. To tap into that, you need to offer convenience and speed as a way to set yourself apart since there are so many auto parts retailers around. RepricerExpress will show you the best ways to sell auto parts on Amazon.
What You First Need to Know About Selling Auto Parts Online on Amazon
Before you let dollar signs start dancing in your eyes, there’s one really important thing you need to know first: Automative is one of Amazon’s gated communities. This means you can’t automatically set up shop, but rather have to meet a list of criteria first.
- Register with an Amazon professional selling plan.
- Make sure the major brands you’ll be listing have UPCs.
- If you’re selling certified refurbished products in the Automotive & Powersports category, they must have a warranty from either the manufacturer or remanufacturer.
- Whatever images you display have to be product-compliant and reviewable on an image hosting site or independent website (like the brand’s site).
- If you’re selling products specifically designed for certain vehicles (e.g. floor mats, tires, side mirrors, belts, headlight assemblies, etc.), make sure to review the Automotive & Powersports Part Finder and Fitment Data page.
This is what you need to sell in that gated community. However, there are optional extras that can really boost your presence and increase your chance of sales.
- Your own private website can offer a great advantage if you’re a brand reseller, as it legitimizes your operation and gives buyers the chance to view more information and details. If you’re a private label seller, the advantage isn’t as strong, but it’s still a good idea.
- Starting out on Amazon can be a good way of building traction if you manufacturer your own products. Buyers flock to Amazon because of their shipping speed and customer-friendly support, so you get good brand visibility and recognition by starting off on Amazon.
- If you’re a third-party seller, you might be in for a tough time. The landscape is incredibly competitive, so you’ll really need to be on top of your competitive pricing and supply chain game to get a shot at the Buy Box and inch ahead.
- There’s no “used” category for auto parts the way there is with products in other categories. Instead, you’ll find the general equivalent is “refurbished”, so keep that in mind when buying/selling used goods. And don’t forget about including a warranty!
What Kind of Auto Parts Sell Best on Amazon?
Automobiles are made up of thousands of parts, which can make it kind of intimidating to get started when assembling an inventory. But there are certain tips you should keep in mind that can make the road easier for yourself.
- Buyer Need: Think about selling to the average auto owner instead of mechanics or dealers. Aiming at the former can give you access to a much larger and more open-minded group of buyers, while the latter tends to consist of a much smaller and more discerning group of buyers.
- Size and Weight: Auto owners looking on Amazon for parts don’t want to pay a ton in shipping, otherwise it would make more sense for them to drive down to their local store instead. Think about selling auto parts that are relatively small and light, as that’ll cut down on your shipping costs and make your products more attractive from a selling standpoint.
- Vehicle Fit: The more your products are limited by vehicle fitment, the more you’re restricting yourself to a smaller group of buyers. It might not be the worst thing if your inventory primarily fits, say, Honda Civics since they’re a hugely popular model, but you’re excluding all the other car owners. If you can broaden your inventory to fit most makes and models, you’ll be reaching a much wider audience.
- Frequent Usage: There are some auto parts, like timing belts or windshields, that need to be replaced very infrequently. As a result, you won’t be getting many repeat customers. Instead, look at auto parts that tend to get bought more frequently, like spark plugs, headlights, mirrors, mats, filters and wires.
- Optional vs. Emergency: When a buyer needs to replace an auto part immediately, like a battery, starter or alternator, they’re not going to be taking their time to look for the best all-around deal. Their car is dead and they need to remedy that right away, so try and avoid emergency items if you can. Stick to auto parts where buyers have more time to browse and research so the likelihood of them coming across your page is much higher.
- Ease of Installation: I like to do as much maintenance on my car as possible, and the stuff that’s quick and easy to do and doesn’t require me to invest in an expensive set of tools is what I gravitate to. This is true of most auto owners as well. Some of the most popular auto parts that are easy to maintain or replace are things like spark plugs, windshield wipers, air filter, oil filter, fuel filter, battery, brake pads, headlights and fuses. These are all relatively simple jobs that can be done with a basic set of tools.
- Durability: There’s no other way to say this, but getting stranded in your car sucks. One of the only things that can make it worse is if it could have been avoided with a better quality product. Stand by what you sell and assure your buyers they’re getting a solid, durable, well-made auto part that’s worth the investment.
As for what to avoid, pretty much the opposite of the above-bulleted list. Stay away from large, bulky, breakable, expensive-to-ship items, as well as those meant for a niche audience.
And unless you’ve got a ton of experience in high volume sales, avoid selling open-box/pre-owned/refurbished items. You’ll need special approval from Amazon to sell these types of items.
Maybe it’s just the inner car nerd in me talking, but selling auto parts on Amazon can be a really exciting and fulfilling category to deal in. You’re working with buyers who have a higher-than-average interest in their cars and are looking to continually increase their skills, which can result in lasting buying-selling relationships with people on both sides who really know their stuff.
However, it can also be tough to sell in the Automotive Parts category because there’s so much competition. One way you can edge apart from the crowd is with really competitive pricing, and a nice byproduct of that is higher chances of winning a Buy Box and getting a big boost in sales. But make the route there as easy for yourself as possible by using RepricerExpress. To help you get started, we’ll give you a free trial once you sign up.