Amazon provides sellers with an online marketplace. Individual merchants are allowed to set up accounts and list products for free, though there is a "per sale" charge. Sellers with lots of products may elect to pay a monthly fee to list as a "pro merchant" on Amazon. A seasoned marketer with a Pro Merchant account is eligible to open an online Amazon store -- a hosted company website dedicated to the seller's e-commerce.

Step 1.

Open an individual seller's account to start a business selling less than 40 items per month. Visit the "Sell your stuff" page (see Resources). List the first item you want to sell by clicking the "Select product category" drop down in the "Locate the item you'd like to sell" box. Click on the category your item fits into, then type the name of the item in the box labeled "Search by title or keywords." To sell a Star Wars Monopoly game, for example, you would click "Toys and games" on the drop down menu, and type "Star Wars Monopoly" in the "Search..." box.

Step 2.

Click the "Start selling" button next to your typed-in product name. That opens the pages listing all the various types of products by that name for sale on the website. The list of Star Wars Monopoly games, for instance, includes six different Monopoly games with Star Wars themes. Click the "Sell yours here" button next to the exact product you plan to sell to add it to the list, and to create your merchant account.

Step 3.

Fill out the information requested on the application to register for marketplace payments, so you receive payment when your items sell. The application opens when you list your first item. List your bank account number and the bank routing number for direct deposit payments. Your sales through, minus the seller's fees, will be deposited into an account in your name, and the total amount will be deposited into your bank account periodically.

Step 4.

Open a Pro Merchant account to sell more than 40 items per month through Pay $39.99 monthly to save the per-sale fee. Visit the "Sell on Amazon" page. (See resources) Click the "Start selling" button under the "Sell Professionally" heading. Fill out the form for creating an online login, click "Continue" and fill out the information requested on the following forms, including a credit card number and phone number, for use during registration. List your items and wait for orders.

Step 5.

Check for orders online at your seller's account page by clicking the "View your orders" link. Orders that have not been sent will be marked "Unshipped."

Step 6.

Click the order number link to see the buyer's address for unshipped orders. Print the packing slip and customer address label. Ship your merchandise to the buyer through the mail, or shipping and courier service. Contact the purchaser through the link on the "Order detail" page to declare that the order has been shipped.

Tip also charges sellers a referral fee and a closing fee for each item sold. Some items cost more to sell through the website than others. Price your items with the cost of shipping included, to balance the cost of the commission fees.

There are different options for opening an Amazon store available to successful Pro Merchant account holders. Each has various stipulations for shipping and website design, at differing monthly costs and commission fees. Choose the option that best suits your business needs.


Account options and fees listed are per in 2010.