This might seem like basic stuff, but you'd be surprised how annoying it can get if you keep having to go and order shipping supplies online while you are in the startup phase of your Amazon FBA business.
Use this article as a checklist to get all the items you need in one hit, so you can spend your time packing and shipping to Amazon rather than wondering what other supplies you need to buy!
The Big Ticket Items
There's going to be some items that will cost a bit, but they are going to be your workhorses that get used each and every day. Kit yourself out with these big ticket items and they will pay for themselves in no time.
Thermal Label Printer
Printing labels becomes a daily affair once your Amazon FBA sales volume is doing well. you'll need to make sure you purchase an appropriate printer that can print the Amazon FNSKU labels, but this is another topic I recently wrote about in my thermal label printers for Amazon FBA article.
You can't print labels on your thermal label printer without the labels themselves, right? You're going to need to get whatever labels are suitable for your label printer, which is why it's worthwhile choosing a label printer that doesn't restrict the brand of labels you can use.
If you're trying to weigh your boxes on your home scales, or weighing yourself with and without the box, you're going to get fed up with messing about after not too long.
This is why every Amazon FBA seller, or at least the ones that don't use FBA prep services, should have a decent shipping scale.
Wireless Barcode Scanner
Not an absolute must, but when you are sourcing more and more products you'll love the convenience of being able to scan a product and have the data feed directly into your computer. This is going to save you time typing out UPC codes or product names when trying to find ASINs on Amazon.
Using a wireless barcode scanner with a tool like Inventory Lab is also a winning combination.
The Necessary Shipping Supplies
If you're sourcing goods online arbitrage or doing retail arbitrage for your FBA business, you absolutely need all of these shipping supplies. Some just make your life so much easier, and some are actually a requirement for sellers according to Amazon's seller policies.
Amazon FBA Boxes
You gotta pack your products into Amazon compliant boxes, so make sure you do your research. You can re-use and recycle old boxes, but they still need to meet certain requirements.
I wrote an entire article about boxes for Amazon FBA so have a read of that before you start your FBA journey.
Packing Material - Box Filler
When packing your boxes for FBA, you'll need to follow the correct guidelines which means packing specific material around your items inside your box.
These are the recommended items:
- Bubble wrap
- Full sheets of paper (heavy-weight kraft paper is best)
- Inflatable air pillows
- Polyethylene foam sheeting
Self sealing polybags are a must for any Amazon FBA seller. Not only are they great to keep multiple items together in the one bag, they help protect your products from wear & tear, dirt, and dust.
The importance of a good quality polybag that meets Amazon's policy cannot be overstated, which is why I wrote all about them in this article about polybags for Amazon FBA.
Poly Bag Labels
Amazon FBA policy states that polybags need to have certain labels with important warnings, such as suffocation warnings, and bundled products need to be labeled as "ready to ship".
The great thing with the bags I use is that have all the appropriate warnings and messages on them.
Read more about my recommended polybags for Amazon.
Packing Tape Dispenser
Of course you can just get rolls of packing tape and use scissors, but it soon becomes a major pain so getting a decent quality tape dispenser will save you a heap of time (and quite possibly your sanity).
You can't send to Amazon without first taping up your boxes, so don't go too cheap and nasty when getting tape and a dispenser. You will use them a lot.
Handy Supplies That Are Nice to Have
I think it's important to have a full arsenal of everything in this article, but of course not everyone has the budget to buy everything at once.
Here's a list of items that you can do without, but they are certainly nice to have:
A tape measure will come in handy when it comes time to check the sizes of the boxes you're sending into the Amazon fulfillment center. A ruler won't be big enough so a retractable tape measure is going to be the best option for this.
If you're receiving lots of deliveries from your online arbitrage sourcing and you need to open boxes etc, a decent box cutter is going to be much more effective than simply using scissors. You may also find yourself using your box cutter to trim and cut box filler and other items related to your shipping process.
Re-using boxes for Amazon FBA is a great way to cut down on waste and a box re-sizer is a nifty little tool to help you do just that. Of course it's not 100% necessary, but it comes in handy.
Goo Gone or Undo
These adhesive remover products make it much easier to remove labels and stickers from products. Alternatively you could also use a heat gun.
In addition to using the adhesive remover sprays to help remove price stickers and the like, a scotty peeler is going to save your nails!
You've probably already got a bunch of these laying around the house, but there's always times where you need a decent sharpie! Get some especially for yourself and tuck them away from the rest of the family.
Wrapping Up - Amazon FBA Shipping Supplies
Well, this one was interesting to write. There really is quite a lot of stuff that goes into this business. Normally I write about the best software tools for Amazon sellers so it's easy to forget about the manual labor side of things.
Are there any items that I missed? What items can you simply not live without? I'd love to hear your feedback!
Thanks again and happy selling!