Add These Techniques to Your Scanning Routine

Posted on

The main thing most sellers do with OAXRAY is scan pages on our supported stores to see which items show a positive ROI for flipping on Amazon.  This is probably the easiest way to find products to flip on Amazon.  But there are a few other techniques you can use at the same time your using this traditional approach.  Youx’ve already invested the time in pulling up the page and scanning it, so you might as well get as much mileage as you can out of it.  Just doing a positive ROI scan is like buying a something at McDonald’s during the Monopoly promotion and not bothering to peel the game piece off.  Not necessarily worth buying just to play, but you’d might as well if you’ve already given way to your lizard brain and decided to go through the drive-thru for a BigMac.

Negative ROI Sort

I know, at first glance, this sounds like the dumbest thing you can do.  And it is if you buy from the source store.  But put on your thinking cap for a bit here.  Let’s say you scanned a page of products on the website Steve’s Emporium of Fabulous Merchandise.  If you find a few products at an extremely high negative ROI (-85% & more), obviously the price is high at Steve’s Emporium of Fabulous Merchandise is high relative to Amazon.  This can be for one of two reasons:

  1. The price is very high at Steve’s Emporium of Fabulous Merchandise.
  2. The price is very low at Amazon.
  3. Some combination thereof.  (I lied)

In our case, we’re looking for #2.  If Amazon is at an extreme low, there is a greater chance that the item may be a good candidate for an Amazon-to-Amazon flip.  Check out the Keepa graph and make a decision.  You can see the quick view of the Keepa graph (which is generally good enough to see if an item is worthy of further research) by hovering over the Amazon price.  Make this a routine and you’ll end up with some winners.


Unavailable on Amazon

If exotic ROI filtering isn’t your thing, this one is easy.  If you can click a button, you can do this.  At the top of your main tab, just click “Currently Unavailable on Amazon.”  These are items that have a listing, but are not currently available on Amazon.  In these cases it may be one of two types of “unavailable” – no listings at all or no FBA listings.  Both give opportunities to set your own price.  Rejoice and be glad.


Shadow Listings

Ssshhhhh!  This one is a secret.  There are some ASINs that for some reason or another do not have sales ranks, but not because they have never sold. “Well, that is a nice bit of Amazon trivia,” you may be thinking, “but how can I turn this obscure fact into some cold, hard cash?”  It is easy-peasy.  Look for zero ranked items with reviews.  OAXRAY now features a column that will tell you if an item has reviews or not.  An item with a rank of zero that has reviews is a suspicious thing – like an Amazon seller who says they have plenty of money to source with.  Reviews are an rough and alternative way of measuring sales velocity – so keep your eyes out for these.  Even if the margins don’t make sense to buy now, these listings may be viable in the future – log them in a spreadsheet when you run across them and run them through the CSV Loader every so often and see if anything is worth buying.


Create Lists for Later CSV Processing

While you’re pouring through lots of data, take time to create lists for yourself in spreadsheets that you can later use and run through our CSV Loader to see if they are worth pursuing at a later date.  Just make sure to save the ASIN – you’ll need some kind of price as well – you can retain the price you found while scouting or make up a dummy price.  Here are some ideas on different lists you can compile:

  • Almost Buys – Nothing is as disheartening as not quite being able to pull the trigger on something.  All that time researching is lost forever.  Or is it?  Log those ASINs in a list to see if things change.  An additional benefit to doing this is that it can prevent you from making poor buys because you’re already “time and effort invested” in the product.  It is like when you want to buy something for yourself on Amazon, but you add it to the wishlist instead of actually buying it – it gives you some small measure of satisfaction and can be useful later.
  • Shadow Listings – I am feeling lazy today, see above.
  • Q4 Possibilities – See an item that has possibilities for Q4 outside of Q4?  Add it to a list.  Run it later and see.  Bonus tip: If you’re in Q1, you can take a look at the Keepa 30 day and 90 day average so retroactively get a sense of Q4 pricing.
  • Seasonal Possibilities – Same concept as Q4 above, but apply to other product cycles.
  • Out of Stock – OAXRAY now supports OOS on a few stores and you’ll undoubtedly run into others yourself in the next step in your research.  Add them to a list and run them later and see if they are back in stock.  These items are also more likely to have volatile pricing, so a few out of a bunch may rise up to meet your buying criteria.  Furthermore, we may add stores in the future that do stock these items that didn’t before.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *