Growing with the Hustle: My Roller Coaster Ride of Selling on Amazon

Amazon Expert

Hi I’m Steven, Founder of My Amazon Guy, a 500+ person Amazon Seller Central agency out of Atlanta, GA. We Growth Hack eCommerce and Marketplaces through PPC, SEO, Design, and Catalog Management.

Helium 10 threw down the gauntlet, and who am I to back down from a challenge to tell my story of selling on Amazon? They wanted a raw and honest look at the life of an Amazon seller, and that’s exactly what I’m here to deliver. 

E-commerce has always held a strange allure for me. Maybe it was the thrill of that first Magic: The Gathering card sale online as a kid, but something about the online marketplace sparked a fire that’s never gone out. 

From Director to Learner: Building Expertise

Fast forward, and I spent a decade in the trenches, working as an e-commerce director. It was an incredible learning experience, giving me a front-row seat to the inner workings of online selling. But there was this constant itch, a nagging entrepreneurial spirit that wouldn’t be silenced. I dabbled in side hustles, keeping my skills sharp and building connections in the industry.

An Unexpected Push: Taking a Leap of Faith

Then, life threw me a curveball. A layoff from my director position could have been a setback, but I saw it as an unexpected push. Within 48 hours, I was on LinkedIn, boldly announcing my plan to offer Amazon consulting services. Talk about a leap of faith! Luckily, it paid off. I landed my first client within a day, a testament to the growing demand for Amazon expertise.

From Solopreneur to Full-Fledged Agency: Building My Amazon Guy

That one client was the spark that ignited My Amazon Guy. It started as a solo venture, just me and my laptop, fueled by countless hours of research, strategy formation, and client communication. But as the demand grew, so did the team. From a lone wolf, I transitioned into a leader, handpicking talented individuals who shared my passion for e-commerce and my dedication to Amazon success.

The Challenging Turn: Facing and Dealing with Failure Selling On Amazon

Losing Money Despite Success:

  • Sold Momstire wine glasses four years ago and made a quarter million
  • Launched My Age of Sage brand, focusing on bath and body products.
  • Invested heavily in warehousing, product development, and influencer marketing.
  • Achieved high sales volume but struggled with profit margins.

Unforeseen Challenges:

  • Intense competition emerged, driving down prices.
  • Rising Amazon fees impacted profitability.
  • Brand registry issues and product removals caused disruptions.

My Weaknesses Exposed:

  • While a strong marketer, I lacked expertise in product sourcing and maintaining margins for consumer goods.
  • The challenge of creating in-demand products with sufficient profit margins.

Selling on Amazon: Learning From My Mistakes

The Fallacy of Easy Wins

  • The “find a cheap product on Alibaba, sell it on Amazon” strategy is no longer viable in 2024.
  • The importance of selecting the right product niche and vertical.

Playing to My Strengths

  • My true zone of genius lies in e-commerce marketing and education.
  • Leading and educating my team at My Amazon Guy is where I excel.

The Road Ahead

  • Selling My Age of Sage brand to allow me to focus on My Amazon Guy.
  • The brand will continue under new ownership, with potential product adjustments.
  • Continuous educational content creation on My Amazon Guy’s YouTube channel, LinkedIn, and other social media platforms.

Committed To Impart The Knowledge About Selling On Amazon

Don’t get me wrong, the success is sweet. But what truly fuels my passion is empowering others. Sharing my knowledge through our massive YouTube channel and the structured courses offered by MAG School – that’s what gets me going. Seeing others succeed on the Amazon platform, that’s the real reward.

Selling on Amazon MAG School courses

Sharing knowledge can lead to immense success, as evidenced by My Amazon Guy’s growth. One of my most recent content is The Honest Truth About Selling on Amazon FBA In 2024 (It’s HARD). 

I shared here the challenges I faced selling on Amazon

Here are some key takeaways to navigate the complexities I mentioned and become a thriving Amazon seller:

Product Selection is Paramount:

  • Don’t just chase trends. Conduct thorough research to find a product with a good market fit, competition level, and profitability potential.
  • Consider private labeling, but remember it requires a strong understanding of sourcing, branding, and differentiation.

Be Prepared for the Learning Curve:

  • Amazon selling involves a vast skillset – logistics, SEO, marketing, PPC advertising.
  • Invest in learning resources, attend workshops, or consider hiring a reputable consultant to bridge your knowledge gaps.

Embrace the Hustle:

  • Forget the “get rich quick” schemes. Building a successful Amazon business takes dedication, hard work, and constant adaptation.
  • Be prepared to wear multiple hats, from product sourcing to customer service.

Don’t Fear Diversification (Done Right):

  • While my experience with Walmart and TikTok wasn’t ideal, exploring additional sales channels can be beneficial.
  • But prioritize mastering Amazon first before spreading yourself too thin. Research and choose platforms that complement your brand and target audience.

Beware the Shiny Object Syndrome:

  • Don’t get swayed by every new marketing tactic or product idea. Focus on what’s working for your business and refine your strategies.
  • Track your results, analyze data, and make informed decisions.

Manage Your Expectations:

  • Amazon is a dynamic marketplace. Fees can fluctuate, competition is fierce, and roadblocks are inevitable.
  • Stay flexible, learn from setbacks, and be prepared to adjust your approach along the way.

My Amazon Guy, An Education Company For Selling on Amazon

Guided by the core values that include Learning and Teaching, my Amazon agency is committed to delivering the education every seller and enthusiast needs to succeed on the Amazon space.

Aside from MAG School, YouTube, LinkedIn, and other social media content creation, we also offer other forms of Amazon education:

Amazon SOP Library

Key benefits:

  • 500+ SOPs: A comprehensive toolkit for Amazon success.
  • Expert-Developed: Learn the exact systems we use to grow client accounts.
  • Empower Your Team: Reduce reliance on external support and boost efficiency.

Topics Covered:

  • SEO & PPC
  • Design & Troubleshooting
  • Brand Protection & Account Management
  • Inventory & Customer Service
  • FBA Mastery & Common Issues

Webinars and Summits

We go beyond SOP libraries. We offer a dynamic learning environment to fuel your Amazon success. Join our community of passionate sellers at our informative webinars and immersive summits.

What to Expect:

  • PPC Mastery Summit: Dive deep into the world of Pay-Per-Click advertising. Learn cutting-edge strategies from industry experts to optimize your campaigns, target the right audience, and maximize your return on ad spend.
  • Brand Builders Summit: Unleash the power of branding! This summit equips you with the knowledge and tools to build a strong, recognizable brand that resonates with your customers and fosters loyalty. Gain insights from leading brand-building experts and discover creative strategies to differentiate yourself on Amazon.

More Than Just Us:

We understand the power of collaboration. That’s why we invite renowned Amazon industry experts to join the conversation. Gain diverse perspectives, practical advice, and actionable strategies from the best in the business.

These events are perfect for:

  • New and established Amazon sellers
  • Anyone seeking to elevate their PPC skills
  • Businesses looking to build a strong brand on Amazon

Personalized Coaching

Every Amazon seller’s experience is unique, If you need professional and expert insights on how to deal with a specific challenge you are facing about selling on Amazon, then we are ready to help through one-on-one coaching sessions.

Proactively Face The Challenges of Selling on Amazon

Selling on Amazon is not passive income and it involves many challenges. Product sourcing, for one, involves some unexpected hurdles. Being proactive by familiarizing yourself with the possible problems can help prepare a seller.

Selling on Amazon Product Sourcing

Building a Sustainable Business of Selling on Amazon

  • Don’t fall prey to the allure of quick profits by compromising on quality or customer service.
  • Focus on building a strong brand reputation, fostering customer loyalty, and providing excellent products and experiences.

Remember, You’re Not Alone:

  • The Amazon seller community is vast and supportive. There are numerous online forums, coaching programs, and communities where you can connect with experienced sellers and learn from their triumphs and struggles.

The Bottom Line:

Selling on Amazon can be a rewarding journey, but it’s not for the faint of heart. By managing your expectations, educating yourself, and embracing the challenges, you can overcome the hurdles and carve your path to Amazon success. 

The key is having the right tools in your arsenal to navigate the ever-changing Amazon landscape.

That’s where Helium 10 comes in. It’s not just a toolbox; it’s a comprehensive suite specifically designed to empower Amazon sellers. Imagine having a team of experts in your corner – for keyword research, product optimization, competitor analysis, advertising management, and so much more.  

Helium 10 equips you with the data,  automation tools, and educational resources to streamline your workflow,  maximize your profits, and minimize the guesswork.

Ready to take your Amazon business to the next level? Sign up for your Helium 10 account today and see the difference the right tools can make!