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Beginner's handbook Ecommerce platform guide Printful 101

How to Sell on Amazon with Printful’s Integration

By on April 3rd, 2018 Reading Time: 6 minutes

Can you imagine what 197 million unique monthly visitors looks like? That’s what Amazon gets each month. And ecommerce retailers can get in on that traffic too, by selling on Amazon Marketplace.

Half of all products bought on Amazon are from Amazon Marketplace. For ecommerce retailers, selling on Amazon’s Marketplace opens the doors to a whole new wave of customers and sales. After all, the more places you sell on, the more opportunities your customers have to find you.

If you’re wondering whether this is a channel you need to tackle, then this blog post is for you. It walks you through what you should consider if you want to sell on Amazon, how Printful’s integration works, and extra tips for success.

Should you become a seller on Amazon?

Amazon is an ecommerce giant. You know the numbers:

Besides these impressive figures, there are some more practical reasons ecommerce retailers should consider selling on Amazon:

  1. Amazon is a trusted marketplace. You know that customers trust and shop on Amazon, so being a seller there adds legitimacy to your business.
  2. Multichannel selling is a growing ecommerce strategy. You shouldn’t just be selling products on your online store, but also on marketplaces where you can access previously untapped audiences.

The cherry on top of the cake? The Printful + Amazon integration

Our integration makes your life easier by automatically handling printing and fulfillment for your Amazon orders. And with our product push generator, you can add products to your storefront in a couple of clicks.

It also lets you sell in different Amazon marketplaces and regions. You can sell in North America or Europe, or both! This is one of the only integrations out there that lets you connect with a global audience, so it’s a big advantage if you don’t want to limit yourself to one region.

BUT – and this is a big but – you should be aware of these things before moving forward:

  • You’ll need to sign up for an Amazon Professional Seller Plan, which costs $39.99/month. That’s because Amazon requires you to have a Professional Seller Plan to use their API, which you’ll need for this integration to work.
  • You’ll also have to pay referral fees for each product you sell. The fees depend on the product category and listed retail price, but they can be up to 15%.
  • This is a more complex integration compared to other platforms we integrate with. And Amazon has strict seller regulations. So the setup and maintenance will be more time-consuming than with other integrations.

Amazon isn’t for beginners and it’ll require more time and money to keep it going. It might not be for everyone, but if you’re ready to take the plunge and give Amazon a try, read on and forge ahead!

How to set up your Printful + Amazon integration

Before I continue, let me get this out there: you’re in for some heavy lifting.

The Amazon integration is technically dense, and Amazon itself has rules and approvals for setting up. This process might not be as quick and easy as our other integrations, but we have plenty of resources to walk you through it.

You can start by watching this video tutorial for detailed, step-by-step instructions on how to connect your Amazon account with Printful.

Adding Amazon products through Printful

Once your GTIN exemption (or registered brand) is approved and the integration is complete, you can add products to Amazon through Printful’s push generator.

Remember that you need to have GTIN exemption for every product category you want to sell on Amazon. You also need to authorize at least one marketplace.

Watch the video to learn how to add your products:

Important:

  • It may take up to 24 hours for products to sync from Printful to Amazon.
  • Amazon has a limit for how many products you can add at once. If you reach the limit in one upload, you’ll have to wait a little before you can add more.
  • If you’re having trouble syncing a product, double-check that you’ve requested GTIN exemption for that product category! This is the most common error we see with syncing products to Amazon.

Image requirements and product descriptions

Amazon has strict requirements when it comes to adding product images. You can read them in full here, but there’s no need to worry. Mockup images that are pushed through Printful meet Amazon’s requirements.

Amazon also has guidelines for how to write your product titles and descriptions. You should follow their suggestions because they’re designed to make it easier for buyers to find you. Read their guidelines here.

Setting up shipping and taxes

Another technical aspect you’ll need to take care of is shipping and taxes.

For shipping, we recommend using Amazon’s default rates. They’re calculated based on industry standards for each product category. Watch our tutorial on shipping and returns below: 

We recommend consulting an accounting professional to help sort out your taxes. You can take a look at Amazon’s resources here (you have to be logged in to Seller Central to view). 

Keeping your Amazon account healthy

Amazon’s priority is the buyer. It wants its buyers to keep coming back and spending more. That’s why they have strict rules for sellers – to ensure the buyer has a good experience.

If your store’s performance metrics don’t meet Amazon’s standards, they’ll issue warnings and then penalties if nothing is improved. Too many infractions and your Amazon account will be suspended. So it’s best to keep an eye on your metrics before things get out of hand.

You can keep track of your account’s performance by going to the Performance tab.

There you’ll see how your account is performing and what you need to improve. These are some of the metrics Amazon tracks:

  • The number of negative reviews for your account or products
  • The number of orders you cancel prior to delivery
  • The number of shipments that are sent out after your promised production time

So do your research. Make sure you understand Amazon’s terms and know what you need to do to follow them. You’ll find more detailed info throughout Amazon’s FAQs and forums. Contact their support if you need clarification.

How will Printful handle fulfillment?

If you work with Printful, you can’t control fulfillment on your own. You’re relying on us to ship your orders on time, and we don’t take that lightly.

To make this smoother for us and for you, we automatically set the production time for Amazon products pushed through our generator to 6 days. This is on average the longest time it takes for Printful to fulfill a product. So as long as your orders ship out within 6 days, your account won’t get penalized for late shipments.

We don’t suggest changing this, because if you set it to a time that Printful can’t work with, your orders will count as late, which could mean trouble for your account. If you really want to, you can edit the production time by going to Manage Inventory -> Edit -> Production time.

Bonus tip: Startup Vitamins manually upgrades all of its orders to expedited shipping. This automatically marks them as priority on Printful’s end, which bumps them up the queue so they’re sent out faster.

Tips to manage your customer support

It’s critical that you keep your customers happy on Amazon. An unhappy customer can leave a negative review, which can lead to account suspension.

Here are some tips to manage customer support on Amazon:

  1. Amazon requires you answer all customer inquiries within 24 hours. So when you get an email, answer ASAP. This increases customer satisfaction and decreases your chance of getting negative feedback.

If you need Printful’s help, reach out to us straight away. Hop on chat or give us a call at +1 (818) 351-7181 (Mon-Fri 9-5 PST).

  1. Customers are sent requests to leave reviews after they’ve received their products. So it’s important to provide them with the best customer service you can so they’re more likely to leave a positive review.
  2. We recommend you provide returns or refunds for all products. Again, this is to keep your customers happy. At the very least, you need a very clear returns policy. And if you sell apparel, provide detailed size charts and product photos.

Ready to start selling on Amazon?

Hopefully, this blog post gave you all the tools and info you need to start selling on Amazon. And now Printful’s integration will make it easier for you to manage your orders. Be sure to keep this post bookmarked as a resource – you’ll likely have some questions while you’re setting up.

Amazon is a powerful marketplace, whether you sell on it exclusively or simply use it as another sales channel. It may be a steep learning curve, but if you have the time to master it, get started now!

Already selling on Amazon? Share your experiences in the comments!

This article was originally published in March 2017; it has since been updated.

Nora covers all things ecommerce for the Printful blog. She appreciates good dad jokes, new books, freshly baked cookies, and evening jogs.

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  1. Russell Pruitt

    If we connect with Amazon through Printful, does that not bypass our own online stores and related systems, Order and Customer records, etc.?
    Plus … I “get” the time- and hassle-saving benefits of synchronizing products using an application rather than manually, and if someone doesn’t have their own ecommerce site, this may be ” perfect”. But if we do — and offer products not made by Printful — how might your present integration program “block” us from integrating everything we offer through Amazon?

    1. Nora Inveiss Post author

      Hey Russell! Great questions. Connecting Amazon with Printful won’t bypass your online stores and related systems.
      You can also still connect with us if you offer products not made by Printful. Simply hit “ignore” in your Printful account for those products.

      1. Russell Pruitt

        So … if we connect with Amazon via your Printful integration and a Consumer finds our product via Amazon Shopping … they would be routed to our website where, if they placed an Order for a Printful made shirt (or whatever), that Order would automatically be Produced and Shipped by Printful, per “normal” Shopify-to-Printful procedures?

        1. Nora Inveiss Post author

          I’m sorry, it looks like I misunderstood what you were asking. If a customer purchases from your Amazon storefront, then the transaction would all take place on Amazon, no going to your website. So in that sense, it would bypass your online store.

  2. Darius

    Image of product packaging?

    If I only use printful, does that mean a picture of the bag with my logo on it?

    1. Nora Inveiss Post author

      Yes! Printful offers free branding stickers of your logo on the outside of your packages. Go to your Dashboard -> Stores -> Edit to upload.

    1. Nora Inveiss Post author

      If there’s a product that doesn’t have sizing, then we recommend going straight to the manufacturer’s site – they’ll have sizing there.

  3. Dan Vega

    When creating images of “our” products should we be uploading a shirt with our logo on it? I uploaded some existing shirts of mine but Amazon rejected me. This was their response

    “The images you have provided do not clearly show professional branding on your product. Please provide us images that show the professional branding on your product clearly.”

    I don’t have my brand name on all of my shirts so I am not sure what to do here.

    1. Nora Inveiss Post author

      From what we know, Amazon’s approval process is rather subjective, so it depends on who’s reviewing your application.

      We’d recommend submitting a photo of a shirt that does have your brand/logo on it. If you do custom labels for your products, you could also take a photo of your shirt with your logo on the label.

  4. Lindsay

    Hi there,

    Is it possible for Printful to make a mockup generator for the packaging with the brand sticker? I keep getting rejected when I applied to Amazon’s brand and I don’t have a picture of package branding to supply.

    1. Nora Inveiss Post author

      That’s an interesting idea, although I’m not sure it’s something we’ll implement.

      As for Amazon brand registry, I’d suggest placing a sample order with a branding sticker, photographing it, and submitting that.

    1. Nora Inveiss Post author

      That really depends on the keywords you’re going for, and how much you’re willing to invest in your marketing!

  5. Peter

    It seems that Amazon has made it much more difficult to register a brand as of a couple weeks ago; they apparently now require that you have a Registered Trademark. Is there any way to use Printful’s push generator without having a registered brand?

    1. Nora Inveiss Post author

      Yes, that’s true. They recently rolled out their brand registry 2.0, which requires brands to have a Registered Trademark.

      While you don’t need to register your brand to use our integration, you do need to register your brand for the push generator to work.

      1. Patricia

        To register a trademark takes 6 to 12 months for approval.. once approved, then you can apply for Amazon Brand Registry which eliminates the need for UPC codes.
        So in the meantime I am looking to get UPC codes, does Printful supply these so i can plug the codes into my Shopify/amazon integration?

        1. Nora Inveiss Post author

          Printful doesn’t sell UPC codes, and we don’t print UPC codes on any products or labels. If you require them you have to secure them elsewhere.

  6. Megeath

    Is there a delay in funds from Amazon, so we would need a cash cushion to pay Printful for order fulfillment, then receive funds from Amazon afterwards? If som do you know the time frame? Ty

    1. Nora Inveiss Post author

      We usually recommend having some funds in your Printful Wallet as a buffer in case there are any issues with your payments.

      With Amazon, they’ll transfer profit into your registered bank account for all orders that have been shipped.

  7. Fak

    Hey, is it possible to do this integration from Canada? Or is it for Americans only, I already used Printful for Etsy and so far love the service. Seems Amazon is way more complicated. I don’t have a seller account either, is that possible too?

    1. Nora Inveiss Post author

      Yes, this integration should work in Canada and all North American countries.

      Amazon is definitely more complicated. You would need a seller account and now if you want to register your brand (which is required for our integration), Amazon requires you have a registered trademark. So weigh the pros and cons before diving in!

      1. Fak

        Thanks for the reply, so I need to register my trademark? Is that complicated? I mean I know the potential Amazon has, but I would be really grateful if someone could walk me through all this stuff. I already sell on Amazon as a Merch seller and that is pretty easy to be honest. Are people doing this now? Sorry for all the questions!

        1. Nora Inveiss Post author

          No worries! I’d do some research into the trademark process. You can start your search here and here.

          Amazon does have a lot of potential, but it’s difficult to set up and maintain so it’s not for everyone. You have to weigh the pros/cons for your needs to see if it’s worth your time. Hope this helps!

  8. Jaap

    I want to start a small t-shirt business via Printful and sell them on Amazon. But I can’t register a brand at the moment. Is this really necessary? If so is there another way to sell shirts on Amazon using Printful?

    1. Nora Inveiss Post author

      Hey! You can use our Amazon integration with GTIN exemption instead of brand registry. But if you do it that way, our push generator won’t work. We’re currently working on some improvements to our Amazon integration though, so setup will be smoother.

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