When it comes to liquidating Amazon inventory, there is no one-size-fits-all solution. That’s mainly because there’s no one-size-fits-all reason for a seller to liquidate.
Maybe you overstocked for the holiday shopping season. Maybe your product is slow-selling and you need to free up some capital. Or maybe it’s the right time to move on to a new product or business venture entirely.
But, whatever the reason, there are multiple liquidation solutions.
Top solutions when liquidating Amazon inventory
Even though there are other ways to sell off inventory, we thought the following eight, curated alternatives were the best options.
So, before we give away the goods, here are some key points to keep in mind:
- From the start, keep an eagle-eye on your inventory; understand how your inventory levels fluctuate over time.
- Identify potential overstock, dead inventory, or long-tail (seasonal) inventory, and have an out in place for each scenario.
- Amazon makes money from long-term storage fees, so they won’t be asking you to remove dead stock.
- Liquidating stock doesn’t always result in a loss; the right solution could enable you to remain profitable.
- The right clearance choice for you depends on the amount of stock to be offloaded, and the money you’re willing to lose.
- Set a goal to make back your original investment if you can; it means no profit, but no loss either!
Now let’s dig into your liquidation options.
1. Drop your prices
Perhaps the most obvious way to clean out your inventory is to deeply discount your retail price.
You can choose to gradually reduce your price without immediately taking a nosedive. Plus, you can manage the pricing directly in Seller Central.
Or, you can choose to match your competitors’ lowest price, match the buy box price, or manually set the price yourself.
Also, if you use the fee preview column to view the potential losses resulting from the lower prices you’re considering, you could save a fair amount of money.
2. Increase your PPC budget
You might call this a last-ditch effort or a Hail Mary, but if you’re not ready for a price drop, bumping up your PPC (pay-per-click) spend could be the answer you’re looking for.
Try increasing your advertising budget to drive more traffic to your listing. You can stick with traditional keyword-targeted PPC campaigns, or go for Sponsored Products or Headline Search Ads.
This option comes at a cost, though. And if there are significant flaws with your product and/or listing, these efforts might not give you the ROI (return on investment) you’re expecting.
3. Run a giveaway
If you’re going to be liquidating your Amazon inventory anyway, why not try a final giveaway?
By using Jungle Scout’s Launch feature, you can tap into a marketplace of shoppers who are ready to buy.
And even if your goal is to get rid of products instead of boosting your product ranking, this method could boost awareness of your brand.
In addition, if you’re planning to sell a new product under the same brand name, this solution could provide it with some immediate credibility.
4. Sell on deal sites
If your product isn’t selling on Amazon, that doesn’t mean it won’t sell on another platform!
By moving your inventory over to a platform like eBay, Shopify, or Groupon, there’s a chance you could still walk away with a profit.
However, in order to sell your product elsewhere, you’ll have to create a removal order within Seller Central. This will officially move your stock from Amazon’s warehouse to its next destination.
You’ll need to coordinate those logistics though, and it comes at an added cost.
5. Sell to your competitors
Not many think of this scenario, but it might just be your saving grace!
Depending on your product–its category, unique features, and branding–you might be able to sell your stock to a competitive brand selling the same product.
The more basic and unmarked your product is, the likelier it is to find a new home with the competition.
But make sure your negotiation skills are strong!
You’ll want to sell your stock as close to cost as possible to minimize your loss, since you will be responsible (inevitably) for the removal order fees associated with the redistribution of products from the sale.
6. Sell to a liquidator
The biggest perk of selling off your stock to a liquidator is that it requires little to no work on your end.
Liquidators have their own e-commerce network across selling platforms, and they can easily find a new home and new customers for your product.
Keep in mind, though, that you have no control over what happens to your product after it leaves your hands.
In October of 2017, Amazon discontinued their liquidation service, so your only option, in this case, is to work with a third-party liquidator.
It involves more research, but you also have a little more room for negotiation on your end when using a liquidator outside of Amazon.
The bottom line? You don’t have to sell your stock unless you agree on a price together.
Plus, reselling your product to a third-party liquidator means you still have the potential to make back a little bit of your initial investment.
7. Destroy your inventory
If every other option on the table isn’t worth the effort, your best bet is to send your stock to its final destination: The Dumpster.
This is especially useful if you sell on Amazon in a marketplace other than the US or the UK (see option #8 below!).
And while you’ll have to fill out a disposal request (which is similar to a removal request), disposal fees per item are slightly lower than the removal fees.
So, instead of returning your stock to yourself or a new seller, this is a request to destroy your remaining inventory. You can submit your request in Seller Central, through the ‘Inventory Management Options’ tab.
Ultimately, if you’re still planning to use the same branding, you don’t want to hurt your brand, which is why this was included as a viable option.
Destroying your stock means you remain in control of what happens to it, and no one can harm your brand’s reputation.
8. Donate to charity
This feel-good alternative will, at the very least, benefit someone else, if not yourself.
Besides, there are a variety of ways to go about donating stock, depending on your type of product.
Off the top of my head, we could easily find a home for products under our Jungle Creations brand by sending our Jungle Snug baby blankets to a hospital NICU, or donating our Jungle Stix campfire roasting sticks to Girl Scouts of America.
Removal request fees come into play with this option too, so keep in mind that those will come up when you’re letting Amazon know where to send your stock.
Final thoughts on liquidating Amazon inventory
Remember, it’s not uncommon for a business to run into a situation where a product is underperforming, and the seller ends up sitting on excess stock.
And when that happens, sometimes the only option is liquidating that Amazon inventory.
So, if you’re navigating this for the first time, it’s not an indicator that your business is failing! It’s simply a learning experience, and an opportunity to move onto your next venture.
Because of this, you’ll be a better business owner.
Moving forward you’ll have the foresight to avoid similar situations by practicing better inventory management, or implementing some of the techniques listed above sooner rather than later!
Hopefully this article supplied you with the information you were looking for. But in case you need more, please check out the following resources:
If you have any questions, or if you have any other ideas regarding liquidating Amazon inventory, please feel free to drop those in the comments below. Thanks!