Well done to you if you have read all the other 4 phases. You should be getting a feel for how Ecommpreneurs think differently to the everyday Amazon FBA seller. There’s so much more to this right?
You could also assume that the 5th and final phase is where you finish the job but that’s not entirely the case.
From Day 1, you MUST know where you are heading and what you will need to get there. What does the final destination look like and what is the ultimate aim? What are you trying to create? 10 hour work day 7 days a week 360 days a year or some kind of freedom?
If you have read Phase 1 already, you will know that I believe your first step is to start here and get very clear about what it is you are building.
I believe that 99% of all ecommerce sellers, and especially Amazon FBA sellers have an approach that is seriously flawed. Nothing against the courses out there because they teach good fundamentals mostly but why are so many sellers getting poor results. Some are making great turnover but lousy profit and most are simply getting no traction at all.Quite different to the sales pitch isn’t it. You were sold the dream of making money in your pyjamas or lying on a beach sipping cocktails while the money poured into your bank account. It was all made to sound so simple and a done deal but that is NOT what has happened since then is it. You just keep spending money on courses and more tools and events and you, for the most part, are not seeing the return.
It seems to be getting much harder. More competition? Yes definitely. You have internal issues with Amazon, suppliers may change and markets evolve all the time so as a result you do need to operate more intelligently and embrace the changes and the challenges they will inevitably bring with them.
MOST AMAZON FBA SELLERS STRUGGLE BECAUSE….
They don’t know, or have forgotten what a real business is and how to build it.
You have been taught to find the “right” product that sells between $10-$50, source it from China it, list it, get some reviews and then buy tons of stuff and do lots more courses and you will be sipping cocktails on a beach in Bermuda watching your bank account swell as you “throw another shrimp on the Barbie” and laugh about your mates stuck in traffic on the way home from work!
Purpose: To sell the business or have an investor invest in the business
What defines a valuable business?
What do you need to create to add the value, attract the customers and investors?
TIP: Figure out what this is first and then work your way back to see what you need to build and how to reach your targets.
IMPORTANT: A business with systems and processes already has value so even if your sales are not as good as you want an investor will be more likely to invest because you re operating intelligently and just has to fix your products or distribution channels.
WHAT IS A REAL BUSINESS?
Is your Amazon venture selling physical products via Amazon FBA a real business?
Clearly not! You own nothing on Amazon. You can be shut down in a heartbeat no matter how big your monthly turnover is. You have no control. You have no intrinsic value when you are just selling on someone else’s platform. You are building Jeff Bezos’ asset not yours.
Amazon is an income centre, NOT a business so the sooner you realise this and begin building your business for you the better.
WHAT IS A “REAL” BUSINESS?
“Build a business that investors would gladly buy for a figure that will provide you with a solid retirement. This is our ultimate aim. Create a brand that people love. Align yourself with this brand. Give it your soul and personality. Your core values. Attract people you want to deal with that you have an affinity and deliver quality products and services via automated processes and systems that work profitably whether you are there or not” – Julian Thornton , The Ecommpreneur July 8th, 2014
What do most Amazon Sellers OBSESS about in relation to their “business?”
1. Sales Rank
3. Account Suspension
There are other issues but these are HUGE in the minds of most Amazon sellers. It drives you nuts right? (I see you nodding!)
You will often hear Internet marketers say “The Money Is In The List?” Have you ever heard that before? You must have. You probably believe it too?
I don’t know about you but I see and hear this all the time and while they are definitely important they are not THE most important things in terms of creating a valuable business that will command a multi-million dollar sale price. You won’t see any of these on an investor’s buying checklist.
GET SYSTEMIZED PROCESSES IN PLACE…
The business elements and/or characteristics that truly add the value for an investor are the systems and processes. Efficient businesses that run profitably are well organised eco-systems of inter-related departments that deliver consistently positive customer experiences profitably. Investors can clearly see this reflected in how the business has documented their procedures within each department and how these are managed and improved by the teams involved.
Systems allow the business to function whether you are there or not. This is a key principle of a real business. If a key member is sick or leaves suddenly there are procedures in place to ensure that their roles are still completed while a replacement is found. It changes the game completely.
Personally, I want to make a lot of money being of service to others and have fun while I am doing it and show others how to do the same. It’s near impossible to do that without having a team of individuals implementing tasks via well-orchestrated systems and processes.
THE CHOICE IS YOURS…
Would you rather a
1. Flimsy business built on a thin idea of selling a few products on Amazon that no investor will take seriously and can be destroyed easily by Amazon or other outside forces; or
2. A valuable asset that will attract the right investors to pay you a very healthy “retirement” income?
My goal is to create a system that spits out complete businesses every 2-5 years for big pay days. I don’t want to work like a dog till I drop! If you want this too just click here and I will let you know when it is ready to roll out in 2016
Being an Ecommpreneur is all about limiting risks, saving time and money, working smart, not hard and delivering quality products and services to a community of people who align with your offerings. It should be rewarding and fun.
Notice I didn’t say “easy” or make a million dollars a month with one product? I am not into hype. I want the cold hard reality of what it takes to make it in ecommerce and that is why I formed The Ecommpreneur Podcast and The $15K Club. It all starts with knowing where you are going, getting to 15K net a month and building it from there.
The Amazon space, in particular, is getting more complex and harder to succeed in every year so you must work smarter and build a strong base methodically.
There are no quick fixes and overnight successes that will provide you with a long term sustainable business.
Most courses focus on individual tactics and strategies on Amazon. Most sellers I speak to are obsessed with Amazon issues rather than building their own assests. They are going from course to course and not focused on what really matters and that is building a business – a REAL business.
If you want security and a better chance of success then I strongly urge you to build a real business that involves more than just a couple of hundred products on Amazon.
Many of you probably realise this already and I apologize if I am being repetitive or sound patronizing. Being aware is one thing. Knowing what to do next is a totally different matter, so Phase 5 is all about understanding what it is you need to create your own valuable business. Whether you sell or not is up to you but at least you will have the choice.
So what do you do now?
BEGIN WITH THE END IN MIND…
I did my best in Phase 1 to get you thinking about what you want to create in your business.
Think about this carefully.
What are you trying to create? Why are you doing this? What is your BIG reason why? Go back to Phase 1 and analyse this now. If you have already started just go back and apply it to your current business. Your weak spots should be very obvious.
You initially thought it was about selling as many units a day on Amazon right? Wrong!
I hate to break it to you but that is NOT why you are selling on Amazon. It isn’t about sales rank and reviews, hijackers or Chinese suppliers either.
It is about creating security, stability and time. Time to spend doing what you want to do and living life.
For the Ecommpreneur, this business is a way to make a solid income while building a valuable asset that can be sold and then you can potentially repeat that process over and over. You can take it to whatever level you like but essentially that is what we want to achieve here. A duplicable and repeatable system you can plug into. Just build the value step by step.
So my recommendation is to get clear about what your business looks like in the future when it is time to sell. Understand what it is and what you will need to create to add the maximum value and command a top selling price.
If your current definition of a business is selling products in Amazon or Ebay alone then you are very mistaken. Hopefully you are crystal clear about this now and ready to build a valuable asset you can sell.
Here’s a list of some of the questions you will need to answer about your business:
There are more than this obviously but it is critical for you to understand what is involved before you commit too heavily.
Resist going for the quick hit. Be different. Build strong foundations. Be unique and build a valuable asset. Grow a community of people you can service and nurture into raving fans who will buy again and again from you. Let your core values and personality shine through so you “attract” the right customers. Be of service and add value. People can copy products but no-one can copy you and your business DNA. If you are unique then you will have less issues with competitors and market changes too. Your community grows to love you and insulates you to a large degree.
I know I have repeated this several times. I can’t emphasize the importance of this for your success in ecommerce.
My partner Julie has been a business consultant for most of the last 20 years. She has built and sold multi-million dollars businesses and consulted to many others in a variety of industries. She has a wealth of knowledge in terms of what a business needs to command an investors interest and deliver a top price when you negotiate a successful sale.