When you think of Amazon, one of the first few images that come to mind are of boxes, warehouses, delivery vans, and tangible products that can be held and touched.
However, Amazon offers more than that. With increasing per capita digital consumption, Amazon also serves as the marketplace for digital products.
As an Amazon seller, you can also go fully virtual and start creating and selling digital products on Amazon.
But what digital products can you sell on Amazon? How can you create them? And what do you need to become a digital product seller on Amazon?
This blog post here will answer all these questions in detail.
Digital products represent any item that offers value and serves end consumers without physical existence. Almost everything that exists on the internet and computing devices become a digital product with that definition— from a news/entertainment website to songs streaming online and ebooks to video content posted on different platforms.
A one-line description of a digital product would be: Anything that digitally satisfies customers' needs and desires is a digital product. The following schematic sums up how a digital product comes into existence.
If you want to keep your e-commerce outing completely virtual, you can bank on Amazon since it allows you to sell several digital products.
These are some categories you can deal in if you want to sell digital products on Amazon.
Ebooks have always been the most popular digital products for customers and creators. Ebooks are relatively simple to produce and distribute via self-created online stores or large marketplaces like Amazon.
Amazon offers a convenient way to sell ebooks through Amazon's Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP). You can use KDP in two ways: “print on demand” and digital. There are some major advantages of using KDP.
For instance, you can get up to 70% royalties compared to the usual 10-20% you would get with traditional publishers. Moreover, you don't need to pay a hefty upfront fee either, which is quite common when you opt for print publishing.
If you know how to write a code, you can earn a good amount on Amazon. Whether you have experience with plugins, apps, snippets, themes, websites, or anything else, you can turn code into cash.
Amazon Appstore accepts software and applications in these categories:
The great news is you can sell your app easily on Amazon even if it is already uploaded to Google Play. When it comes to royalties of software and applications sales on Amazon, you get 70% of the gross revenue. It is certainly lesser than what you can get via selling them on your website. However, your own website won’t be able to give you the reach and traction that Amazon promises.
If you are a graphic designer or artist and want to monetize your art and talent, you can do that by becoming a part of Amazon Merch. Amazon Merch is a print-on-demand service that lets artists sell their artwork through a range of physical products.
Using Amazon Merch as a digital artist and seller is pretty simple: You join the invite-only program, upload your artwork and choose and customize the items you want to sell (t-shirts, mugs, etc) with your designs.
Amazon will take care of all the operational components of those orders, starting from production to order fulfillment and customer service. As an artist and seller, you will get a royalty in the range of 13-37%, depending on the product price, Amazon’s costs, and applied taxes.
People willingly pay for music or audio tracks. Some of the most profitable audio products include Audiobooks, musical samples, recorded lectures, relaxing background scores, reusable sound effects, karaoke versions of popular songs, or even instrumental and full lyrical tracks.
If you want to sell audio content digitally, Amazon provides you with TuneCore – a part of AmazonMusic. You can come up with different types of digital audio products and list them on TuneCore. This platform enables you to make your music and other audio products visible on more than 150 streaming stores including iTunes, Spotify, and Google Play.
Selling digital products can prove to be a great business choice due to its intrinsic benefits like high margins, better customer engagement, and hassle-free logistics and management.
The most appealing benefit of selling digital products on Amazon is the high-profit margin. You don't need to bear the cost of physical material and other related expenses, making your profit margins way higher. Majorly, you focus on customer satisfaction and promotion and that's exactly what leads to higher and faster profits.
Selling digital products offer you unique ways to communicate with your clients directly. For instance, you can build entire communities around your digital products (books, music, digital art, etc) through social media and other relevant online forums. Staying in touch with customers like this improves brand loyalty that also leads to more sales.
It is far easier to manage digital products than physical stock. All you need is digital storage and a marketplace to keep everything organized. You don't need to get into day-to-day management or stock shelves, handle supply chain logistics or deal with suppliers and wholesalers.
Your digital store remains live, ready to serve your goods to clients 24/7. The selling process is more streamlined as the client only needs to hit a button to make a purchase whenever they want.
Also, you don't need to entertain customers at your store and the customers don't need to wait days or weeks for delivery. Customers can use their products right away as they pay for them. Similarly, refunds are also easier to manage since no shipping, re-packing, or restocking is involved.
Do you know that shoppers spent around $2.67 trillion on the top 100 online marketplaces just in 2020?
And of course, the most popular e-commerce marketplace is Amazon, with over 2.7 billion visitors in just six months, from July 2021 to December 2021. Listing your products on such a popular marketplace can help you target more potential customers.
In most cases, your target customers are already busy shopping on such marketplaces, so why not meet them where they are already present?
Imagine holding unlimited inventory on Amazon and generating great profit margins. Does it sound like a perfect business? Well, it surely does.
The good news is it is not a dream scenario. It is absolutely possible if you have a viable digital product. We already have a multibillion-dollar market of online consumers who are more than ready to consume them.
Selling digital products on Amazon is also extremely appealing because you only need to create them once and you can sell them repeatedly to various customers without the need to replenish your inventory.
There are 3 vital steps of selling digitals on Amazon. You have to start by researching and ideating the digital product you want to sell. Then, you have to create that product and validate it as a commodity. Lastly, you have to list and promote it on Amazon to bring it to your potential target market. Let’s further expand on these three steps of selling digital products on Amazon.
The best way to start creating and selling digital products on Amazon is to look at what is working and what's not. Once determined, try to emulate the same. While we don't advocate plagiarism and breach of copyright, we support taking inspiration, improving those concepts, and adding value to existing products.
One way to know what can actually work as a digital product is to check Amazon itself. All you need is to search the type of content or subject on Amazon before creating it. Also, make the most of some incredible tools like ZonGuru’s Niche Finder to validate your idea.
Here's an example:
For instance, if you’re planning to create and sell an ebook on digital marketing, you can find out what consumers are searching for in this regard. In the above snapshot, you can see how different keyword searches centered on the same theme are positioned against each other based on different parameters (competition, demand, revenue potential, etc).
Running this analysis will help you fine-tune the idea you want to base your digital product on.
After you’re done researching and fine-tuning the idea you want to turn into a digital product, start creating it. It is worth mentioning that you may not be able to create the optimal/sellable product in the first iteration. Therefore, create a focus group and have them review the Minimum Viable Product (MVP) you create.
Then in the light of the feedback and common critique of your focus group, improve and modify your MVP for the next iteration. This way you can eventually come up with a finished product ready to be listed on Amazon.
So, now you have the product ready and you have done all the research required to finally list your product on Amazon. However, you will need to make a seller account if you are entering the realm of Amazon for the first time.
You can either pick the Individual or Professional account. With the Individual seller account, you only pay Amazon a fee on each sale ($0.99 per unit excluding referral and other fees). Meanwhile, the Professional account comes with a fixed monthly fee ($39.99 per month excluding referral and other fees).
Once you choose your plan depending on your budget and sale forecast, take these next steps to get up and running.
Submit: As soon as your content is produced, written, or ready, submit it to the relevant program (KDP, TuneCore, Amazon Merch, etc) to get approval.
List: Once you get the go-ahead, list your digital product.
Promote: Lastly, make the most of Amazon PPC (Amazon's advertising system) to advertise your digital product on the platform. Also, promote your digital product on other platforms and through other channels (Facebook, email marketing, etc) to improve traction on your digital product listing.
These three basic steps can take you closer to your dream of selling your digital product on Amazon quite profitability and without any hassle.
Whether you are a seasoned expert or new to content creation, there is no hard and fast rule to content creation on Amazon. However, successful content is often engaging, targeted, platform-specific, and produced with focus and after thorough marketing research as stated above.
Here are the top characteristics of a successful Amazon digital content creator for your better assistance.
All the successful content creators are always aware of current market trends and observe the changes in the way the audience usually uses digital channels. Also, Content creators understand their audience's wants, needs, and problems and resonate with them through their products.
So, make sure to research what's actually happening in the world and stay relevant to the ongoing developments and what’s “in-demand”.
A good content creator doesn’t just produce good content. They also find ways to market the content in the best possible manner.
For instance, instead of just relying on PPC, you can find numerous other ways to attract customers to your digital products. You can learn to use simple tools such as Canva to generate marketing material and build your brand through email lists, social media, and other digital channels.
Before creating content, understand what you want to achieve through your content. For instance, are you seeking to earn more social engagement, sales, website traffic, or all three?
Similarly, don't neglect the power of measuring success and keeping track of it. Once the product is live, measure its success against your targeted purpose. This helps to understand what works and what does not and what needs to be improved the next time.
Whether you are a subject expert or not, always know enough about the product to make credible changes and continue making new content around that topic. For instance, if you create ebooks on digital marketing to publish on KDP, you must know your way around the domain and all its little details. Similarly, you may have to launch the next volumes of your book since the digital marketing landscape changes really quickly.
Moreover, you will need to be focused and unrelenting when it comes to content creation. Keep in mind that it is not a linear process. If you’re writing a book, some days you may be able to finish an entire chapter of several thousand words. And on some days you may not even go past a couple of lines.
So, the key is to not get frustrated and desperate and move forward anyway without losing focus.
Just like every other platform, there are some rules around creating and selling digital content on Amazon. Some people find selling on Amazon frustratingly daunting. However, if you stay true to long-term objectives and marketing plans and truly understand what you should or shouldn't be practicing, becoming a profitable and popular seller wouldn't be a problem for you.
Some of the most common Do's and Don'ts of Amazon include:
Here are the KDP's dos and don'ts that will help you stay on the right side of the policy.
To successfully distribute music, follow complete TuneCore formatting and style guidelines along with these dos and don'ts.
Amazon Merch can serve as a great platform to demonstrate your digital artwork to a larger audience. Therefore, you need to be on top of things while selling digital products via Amazon Merch.
For reference, here are some of the dos and don'ts of foraying into Amazon Merch. For detailed assistance on the topic, skim through this guide.
When you choose to sell eBooks on Amazon, you set your prices, keep control of your rights, make changes anytime and earn royalties on sales. Publishing on KDP takes less than 5 minutes and your eBook starts listing on Kindle stores worldwide in just 24-48 hours.
Follow these simple steps to sell your eBooks with a fairly straightforward service known as Amazon KDP.
So, this is how you publish your eBook on Amazon, get the approval and start earning profit. However, do keep in mind that once you have submitted the eBook for approval, you won't be able to change its details until it is rejected or approved.
You can upload your album or song on Amazon in 6 simple steps and get paid while reaching millions of potential listeners.
TuneCore approves your release in just one day and it's also affordable i.e. $29.99 to distribute one EP or album and $9.99 to distribute a single.
When you offer apps for sale on Amazon, you earn 70% of what the product sells for. You also have the right to set the price on every product for better margins or competitive pricing.
Here's how you publish your app on Amazon App Store.
Once you follow the steps above, Amazon will review your submission for any bugs or other issues. If no issue is found, you can find your app live on Amazon in just 24 hours of the publishing time.
To sell digital art on Amazon, you need to be part of Amazon Merch, which is an invite-only program. So, you first need to get invited by Amazon, and then you can create and upload your designs for sale.
These are the steps to sell your original artwork on Amazon as a digital product.
This is all you need to start earning by selling your digital artwork on Amazon.
Before reading this guide, it must have sounded too hard to sell digital products on Amazon. Now, you can begin your journey on Amazon with your digital product without any hitches since you’ve got every relevant piece of information.
Start working on a list of things you can sell online and the types of digital content you can create. Remember, there's no better time to start this than now, with Amazon offering incredible opportunities to display your digital product in front of an enormous consumer base.
Many entrepreneurs have already built an entire business around this model. You can do that too if you manage to conceive a good product and put it on Amazon with a robust promotional plan.
Discover opportunities. Maximize your sales. Grow your Amazon business!