All posts by Alex Knight

About Alex Knight

Alex Knight is a feature writer for Web Retailer. A journalism graduate from City University, London, Alex has written for a range of publications, on varying subjects, and produced a short, independent documentary. In the world of ecommerce, Alex has compèred Amazon seller events and is also the host of our Ecommerce Heroes YouTube series.

Amazon Gated Categories: How to Get Approved in Restricted Categories

The Amazon marketplace is not a free-for-all. Here’s how gated categories work, and the process for getting approved to sell in them.

It is no secret that Amazon restricts sellers from offering products in certain categories. To sell products in these “gated” categories, sellers have to go through an approval process. However, this process varies greatly depending on the category you are trying to get “ungated”.

In this article, we explain which categories are gated and the information you need to provide to get approved. We also look at the big questions that many sellers have about restricted categories and explain whether getting ungated is really worth the effort.

Continue reading

eBay Guaranteed Delivery: Should You Opt In Or Stay Out?

eBay’s shipping program promises Amazon Prime-like delivery to buyers. But should sellers opt-in to Guaranteed Delivery or hang back?

Last year eBay introduced Guaranteed Delivery, a program where sellers deliver orders in three days or less. eBay tells buyers when the order will arrive, and they can filter eBay search results to only show listings that qualify.

This is the first time that eBay has had a program like this, so sellers naturally have a lot of questions about Guaranteed Delivery. In this article, we’ll answer 16 of the most important ones. From how it works, to what happens if a delivery is late and, ultimately, whether sellers should opt in or stay out.

Continue reading

Tips to Build a Dropshipping Empire From a $25 Million Seller

We spoke with Connor Gillivan about how he built up his dropshipping business and whether the same approach still works on Amazon today

Many sellers see dropshipping as the perfect ecommerce business model and it’s not hard to see why. You don’t have to purchase stock in advance, have a warehouse or even ship orders. In theory, all you have to do is find products, list them for sale and send the orders to your suppliers. Sounds like the ideal business, right?

Well, in reality, it’s a lot tougher to build a successful business using dropshipping than sellers think. The process might seem simple, but there’s a lot of challenges. Unless you’re highly efficient it can be very easy to make mistakes.

To find out what it takes to build a successful dropshipping business we spoke to Connor Gillivan, who has sold over $25 million of products using dropshipping. Connor has been running ecommerce businesses since 2009 and is also the co-founder of ecommerce outsourcing company FreeeUp.

We talked about the reality of dropshipping, the methods that Connor used to build his business and whether using the same approach could still be successful on Amazon today.

Continue reading

Skip McGrath on eBay Past & Present… a Seller’s Perspective

We spoke with long-time seller Skip McGrath about the changes that have had the biggest impact on eBay sellers over the years

Skip McGrath on eBay Past & Present

eBay has seen a huge number of changes since it opened for business in 1995. There’s been the introduction of a new search engine, big changes to feedback, increasing fees and more. Sellers have had to adapt to them all.

We caught up with Skip McGrath about how the eBay marketplace has changed over the last twenty years. Skip has been an eBay seller since 1999 and is also a trainer and author over at Online Seller’s Resource.

Here’s the changes which have had the biggest impact on sellers and what those changes mean for sellers today.

Continue reading

Payability Takes Off With Instant Advance and Multiple Marketplace Support

From faster payouts for Amazon sellers, to upfront growth capital and support for 15+ marketplaces, Payability is moving really fast this year.

If you ask any online seller about their goals, you’ll hear two things almost every time: they want to grow their sales and they want to sell on more marketplaces. The first goal is essential, more sales means more profit, and a more successful business. The second goal, selling through multiple channels, makes the business a lot less risky.

These goals may sound simple, but they aren’t easy to achieve. To grow, ecommerce businesses need cash. You can only sell more if you have the funds to buy stock in larger quantities and quickly take advantage of new growth opportunities. Likewise, diversifying across multiple marketplaces takes a lot of effort to set up on each platform, to build sales and to manage everything day-to-day.

It’s been a year since we last talked about Payability, and its innovative service to help Amazon sellers get their payouts daily, now known as Instant Access. Things have moved really quickly since then.

Payability has a new service called Instant Advance, which provides ecommerce sellers with a big cash injection quickly to help grow sales. It has also expanded beyond Amazon, and now supports 15 marketplaces and shopping carts in total. Clearly this is a business moving as fast as the online sellers it supports.

Continue reading