Want To Be An International Seller on Amazon USA?
Are you thinking to be an International Seller on Amazon USA? Then here is some good news for you. If you are not a US resident or if you do not have an organization in US then don’t worry, you can sell your product at Amazon.
Throughout the below article, I will let you know about how to set up an Amazon account as a foreigner, ins and outs of importing your products, being paid and growing beyond the US.
Step 01: Pre-requirements for Opening an Amazon US / North America Account
To be an international seller on Amazon USA and start selling , you must open an account first. First of all, you need to know what types of account you want to open, Professional or Individual?
Decision 1: Professional or Individual?
From the below image you will come to know about the difference between Professional and Individual seller. The individual seller account is for those who will be selling less than 40 units per month. More than 40 units is for Professional sellers and you have to pay $39.95 per month. You also have to be on the Professional Selling plan if you are thinking to sell specific product category.
Decision 2: Merchant Fulfilled vs FBA
This choice interrelated to how you get your products to clients.
The answer of the question ” Merchant fulfilled or FBA (Fulfilled by Amazon)” might be different for every seller.
You might consider to choose 3rd party fulfillment centers if the 3rd party fulfillment center’s fees make much more sense especially for your light weight items or if you have products with multiple variations. We will talk about general shipping issues and advantages later.
You should definitely consider to FBA if you have an new account. There are multiple reasons like starting health account without having any shipping problem etc. but this article is not about that. Please send me your questions. I’ll try to respond as fast as I can.However as you can imagine you will have less problem when it comes to “trust” and “healthy account” you should definitely go with the FBA.
Below are some points on How FBA works for a foreigner seller
- You register in the FBA program after opening a Seller account in that country’s marketplac
- You introduce your products to the US and deliver products to Amazon’s fulfillment center(s), whereby Amazon will dispatch products directly to US clients. In part 3 you will learn more about importing requirements & processes.
- Your product inventory, picking and wadding clients’ orders, client service, and returns information will be handled by Amazon. The cost of these service is same for both US based and foreign seller.
- Amazon fulfillment centers will receive the Customers return. If the product is sellable, the product will be re-stocked and can be sold yet again. But if the product is dented or faulty, stock can only be returned to a US address or smashed by Amazon.
Decision 3: Status of Amzon Taxpayer
Tax information needs to submit of all professional sellers or those sellers whose yearly transaction is more than 50 transactions in a calendar year. While opening an account, you have to go through a Taxpayer Wizard, which will create an IRS tax form (W-8) that need to complete by you. Non US residents have to complete the tax interview and you will find that it is a W9-BEN form, which means you will not be liable from U.S. tax reporting requirements.
It is a good news that overseas persons are not subject to US income taxmaintenance if performing the work outside the U.S. Definitely, you may need to pay tax on this regard in your own country. And if you set up a US-based corporation or LLC, that entity will be measured a US “person” and therefore subject to paying income tax.
Before making the decision regarding whether you will open a business entity in the US or uphold a status as an overseas person, consult with a tax professional.
Receiving Approval In Your Item Category
There are some items which need approval in your item category. Items are listed below.
- Beauty / Health & Personal Care
- Clothing & Accessories
- Collectibles & Fine Art
- Grocery & Gourmet Food
- Jewelry, Watches
- Luggage, Shoes, Handbags & Sunglasses
Receiving approval in the above category will ensure that you are lawful manufacturer or brand. Also, Amazon wants to make sure that you have a considerable sufficient business to justify the attempt of reviewing your items or brands as well as you are not at a threat of providing cheap or out of order products.
To make your account valid, you also need to provide
- For International transaction (i.e. Fees) a valid credit card is required.
- Cell number. As Amazon Seller Support apparently makes calls in US numbers so Viber Out or US Skype number will be helpful.
Note: Please make sure to look at the rules and regulations in your own country as well as the existing information given by Amazon and the US Federal Government.
In this part; I will discuss about making sales and getting paid for the sales. Yet, as a non-resident and non-taxpayer, there still are positive rules and obligations you have around reporting and collecting taxes.
Is US Bank Account Required to be an Overseas Amazon FBA Seller?
A number of would-be Sellers come across what appears to be an uncertain block when starting up their Amazon business. A bank account is required by Amazon to proceed your payments. PayPal or Bitcoin will not be an option. But for an overseas person, it is impossible to open a US bank account. Because to open a bank account in the US, the person needs to attend physically in the US. Even to open a US LLC or Corporation, the owner must usually be physically attending in a bank to set up a business account. But the very good news for overseas Amazon seller is that a system has been developed by Amazon by themselves to create a bank deposit in an International Bank Account which is called Amazon Currency Converter for Sellers (ACCS). By ACCS, you can get your payment in your existing local bank and in your local currency. International wire fees or bank limitations are not required on your account. Offering your account is in a country and currency maintained by ACCS.
Countries and Currencies Supported by Amazon Currency Converter for Disbursement
Note: Disbursements can only be made in the home currency of the country where the bank account is located. For example, if your bank account is located in the UK, then disbursements can only be made in GBP, even if your bank account is capable of accepting deposits in both GBP and EUR currencies.
|Eurozone: Austria, Belgium, Cyprus, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Monaco, the Netherlands, Portugal, San Marino, Slovakia, Slovenia, and Spain
|Switzerland and Lichtenstein
|Denmark (including Greenland and the Faroe Islands)
* Disbursements in these currencies are supported via a partnership with Payoneer, a third party, and require a separate Payoneer account. Learn more about Using Payoneer with Amazon.
Few Basic Questions & Answers about the program.
How do I enter my bank details if you have a bank account in one of those countries above?
Please follow the steps below:
- In the “Settings” click the “Seller Account Information” link.
- Click the “Edit” button next to “Deposit Method.”
- Select the country of your bank account from the drop-down menu next to “Bank Location Country.”
- Read and accept the terms and conditions.
- Enter your bank account information.
- Click the “Submit” button.
How do I get paid? Every disbursement will automatically be transferred to your local bank in the local currency.
Isn’t my seller central payment going to take more time because it is an international transfer? No. Your payments may be delayed only by a few minutes.
My bank is not based in one of the countries supported by Amazon Currency Converter for Sellers. Can I get paid into my local bank in my local currency? Currently, this capability is not available for any bank account locations other than those listed in the table of countries and currencies supported by Amazon Currency Converter for Sellers.
How about the fees? If you have entered a non-US bank account and you have a positive balance in your seller account, you can view exchange rate for transfers by clicking the “View Exchange Rate” button on the Payment Summary page.
What about the other registration fields like credit card, billing address, and phone number ? Do they need to be US-based? No, Those stuff doesn’t need to be US-based to register. You can register to sell on Amazon.com if you are resident in one of the many accepted seller registration countries. make sure that your credit card needs to accept international charges.
I am based outside of the accepted seller registration countries. Can I register? No. In order to register to sell on Amazon.com, you need: Your business name, address, and contact information A US or internationally chargeable credit card with a valid billing address in an accepted seller registration country A phone number in an accepted seller registration country where you can be reached during the registration process
What happens if I want to issue a refund? exchange rate also apply to refunds? Refunds to buyers on Amazon.com are made in the website currency (i.e., United States Dollars (USD) for Amazon.com) and as such are not subject to any exchange rate fluctuations. However, it is possible that a card issuer or bank may apply a new exchange rate and a conversion fee to the refund if a non-USD credit/debit card was used for the purchase and the refund was made to that card. Buyers may contact us when this happens, and we advise them to contact their card issuer or bank for an explanation of the exchange rate and any charge applied to the refund.
Taxes – Can you be exempt from U.S. tax reporting requirements?
All Amazon Professional Sellers and those with over 50 transactions in a calendar year must submit their tax information to Amazon. During the account creation, you’ll go through a Taxpayer Wizard which will generate an IRS tax form for you to complete. Foreign sellers still need to complete the tax questions, and it’s likely that the form which is generated for you is a W8-BEN form, which means you’ll be exempt from U.S. tax reporting requirements. Foreign persons are not subject to U.S. income tax withholding if performing the work outside the U.S. Of course, you may still have to pay tax on this income in your own country. And if you set up a US-based corporation or LLC, that entity will be considered a US “person” and therefore subject to paying income tax. I am an amazon consultant and not not you tax guy 🙂 , so please make sure that to consult a tax professional to determine the best action in your case.