Amazon Boot Camp is an educational course designed to help you make money online by selling products on Amazon through retail and online arbitrage.
In this review, we’ll delve into the pros and cons of Amazon Boot Camp, explore the course content it offers, and discuss pricing and potential discounts.
Before I start…
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This is the best business to start in 2023 and made me over 27k last month alone:
- The Amazon Boot Camp, by The Selling Family, focused on retail and online arbitrage for selling on Amazon. It covered 14 modules with practical, step-by-step training, emphasizing scouting, sourcing, pricing, listing, shipping, and managing an Amazon FBA business.
- Amazon Boot Camp had varied pricing options, including a one-time payment of $495 and an easy payment plan of $195 per month for 3 months.
- VERDICT: Unfortunately, the course is no longer available, but it was known for its practical, step-by-step approach, supportive community, and positive student success stories. However, the strategies were primarily tested and proven within the United States, and scalability might be challenging.
What is Amazon Boot Camp?
Amazon Boot Camp was created in 2012 by Jessica Larrew and her husband Cliff, who also refer to themselves as The Selling Family.
They are not the only ones teaching people how to sell on Amazon as we’ve explored other online courses as seen in our piece on the Best Amazon FBA Course: 10 Courses For 2023.
They wanted to share their expertise to help aspiring entrepreneurs navigate the often misunderstood world of selling on Amazon. Their specialty was retail arbitrage.
Was Amazon Boot Camp Discontinued?
As of writing this review, the course is no longer available although we are not sure whether that’s going to be permanent. Here’s the announcement on The Selling Family website:
We had been examining it while it was still available as we put together this article and in the event they bring it back, you’ll have an idea of how it works.
While you are here, check out some of the other courses you may explore if you want a structured guide on Retail Arbitrage:
Alternatives to Amazon Boot Camp
Here are some other courses that teach you how to do retail arbitrage:
Arbitrage 101: The Amazon Course
This course is tailored for beginners, providing a step-by-step approach to selling on Amazon. It is especially great for folks on a tight budget with no prior retail arbitrage knowledge.
Amazon FBA Arbitrage: Make Money Without Private Labeling
“Amazon FBA Arbitrage: Make Money Without Private Labeling” by Daniel Karliner teaches retail arbitrage on Amazon. It’s like a roadmap, breaking down the process into simple, detailed steps. You’ll get the lowdown on crucial stuff: finding the right products, stepping into the shoes of a reseller, and jazzing up your Amazon listings to attract buyers.
Oh, and it’s not just the basics – you’ll also learn smart online selling strategies and master the Amazon FBA system, a big player in making this all work.
Negotiating for profit? Got it covered. Pricing strategies? You bet. Plus, you’ll get schooled on Amazon’s rules so you can get your listings up and running in no time, all while playing by their book.
The Proven Amazon Course (PAC)
The Proven Amazon Course (PAC) is a training program curated by Jim Cockrum, a highly successful Amazon seller boasting an impressive sales record of over $100 million. This course is a treasure trove of knowledge, covering an array of Amazon-centric topics, from Amazon wholesale to optimizing your account for maximum effectiveness.
What sets it apart is the focus on advanced strategies that elevate sales and profits. Beyond just the lessons, PAC provides valuable resources like product research tools, templates, and a dedicated community of fellow Amazon sellers. Reviews consistently applaud its comprehensiveness and effectiveness.
The Smartest Seller Course
This course takes you by the hand and walks you through everything you need to know about establishing and expanding a successful online venture on Amazon. That includes private label, online arbitrage, and wholesale.
Each of these elements is served through engaging videos and insightful audio guides.
The trio behind it (Scott Needham, Josh Andrus, and Michael White) have over $400M in Amazon Sales and more than 25 years of combined experience.
The Amazing Selling Machine (ASM)
This online training program by Jason Katzenback and Matt Clark is designed to teach you how to start and grow a successful e-commerce business on Amazon. It provides guidance and strategies for finding, launching, and scaling a profitable Amazon FBA (Fulfillment by Amazon) business.
Who is The Selling Family?
Jessica and Cliff Larrew (aka The Selling Family), the creators of Amazon Boot Camp, started selling online many years ago.
Jessica, previously an eBay seller, wanted to sustain her family’s needs beyond her day job.
With the birth of her son Aidan, she felt they needed to find a way to replace her income and be present for her child. Trying out eBay initially, she encountered challenges due to shipping complexities, pushing her to explore alternative solutions.
Jessica then discovered Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) and it transformed her approach to online selling.
Since 2011, she, along with Cliff has achieved significant success with an actual business, raking in six figures by leveraging the FBA program.
Their dedication and strategic use of Amazon’s FBA have allowed them to maintain a work-life balance, dedicating less than 20 hours a week to their Amazon selling venture.
The Selling Family Business Model
Those conversations have shed light on their approach and if you have the time, they are great podcast episodes worth listening to.
They shared their business model in greater detail in those conversations.
I sat through those episodes and came away with a few pointers:
In their conversation with Pat Flynn on the Side Hustle Nation podcast, Jessica and her husband revealed that they visit stores such as BigLots and actively seek out recognized brands, seasonal goods, and limited edition items. They look for products that are significantly discounted or have a high selling price on Amazon.
While going through the store aisles, they use the Amazon seller app to scan product barcodes, a process that they admit is time-consuming. Typically, they scan 30-40 products in an aisle.
The app provides insights into the selling price on Amazon and the potential earnings after factoring in selling fees. This data-driven approach guides their purchasing decisions based on the current price information.
The products they sell must meet certain criteria:
Jessica and Cliff insist on a minimum of 50% return on investment (ROI), meaning the item should yield a profit of at least $5 after accounting for fees when purchased for $10.
They go for a minimum of $5 profit per sale, though they can settle for lower margins if the product has a high sales volume.
Maintaining a Sales Rank below 150,000 is something they go for too, as lower ranks indicate higher product demand and quicker turnover, emphasizing the importance of fast capital rotation.
They avoid high-ranking products as they tend to languish in storage with few takers.
Jessica recommends some product categories for new sellers.
She recommends they go for:
- Groceries, particularly limited edition candies, cookies, and seasonal items because they can provide a quick turnaround as long as the expiration date is at least 3 months out.
- Health and Beauty products like shampoo, conditioner, and face creams, especially discontinued items that customers are willing to pay more for to maintain their preferred brands.
- Household items for shoppers looking for unique pieces for their homes.
- Popular toys and games for kids can sell well, although this category may be restricted to new sellers during the holiday season.
- Lastly, used books, particularly niche-specific ones from Goodwill, thrift stores, or yard sales.
What is Retail Arbitrage on Amazon?
Retail arbitrage on Amazon is a business strategy where you buy products from retail stores at a lower price and then resell them on Amazon at a higher price to make a profit.
The goal is to exploit the price differences between retail stores and the online marketplace. You will be identifying discounted or clearance items, sales, or promotions in physical stores and then listing these products for sale on Amazon.
The process begins with scouting brick-and-mortar retail locations like discount stores, clearance sections, thrift shops, or retail outlets for products that are being sold below their potential selling price on Amazon.
Typically, you will compare prices and estimate potential profits before making purchases. Once you find profitable products, you buy them in bulk or significant quantities.
After purchasing the products, you then list them on Amazon, setting a price higher than what you paid in the retail store, factoring in Amazon fees, shipping costs, and potential profit margins.
When a customer buys the product, you fulfill the order, either shipping the product yourself or using Amazon’s fulfillment services (Fulfillment by Amazon or FBA).
How is Retail Arbitrage Different From Other Business Models on Amazon?
Retail arbitrage on Amazon is different from other business models retailers use on the platform due to its fundamental approach.
How is it different?
For example, private labeling and manufacturing, another common Amazon business model, involves creating a unique brand or product line. You develop or source your products, often through manufacturers or suppliers, and then market and sell them under your brand on Amazon. This approach demands a higher level of investment, commitment, and strategic branding compared to retail arbitrage.
Retail arbitrage is often seen as a faster way to start earning on Amazon because it requires less initial investment, and you can quickly test products and markets by buying and selling existing products.
The other models demand more upfront investment, time for product development, market research, and branding before the product is introduced to the Amazon marketplace.
What Does The Amazon Boot Camp Teach?
The Amazon Boot Camp 4.0 focused exclusively on Retail Arbitrage, where you buy products from a brick-and-mortar store, as well as online arbitrage where you buy those products online.
The Amazon Boot Camp comprises 14 modules and a few bonuses with most of the lessons provided in video format.
The training content is easy to navigate and you don’t get a lot of filler content, which is what you’d want from an online course.
The course is updated regularly to bring it up to date with the latest Amazon seller guidelines.
With that out of the way, here are the modules:
Amazon Business Basics
This module establishes a solid foundation for your Amazon business. It tackles aspects like exploring diverse Amazon selling methods, acquiring inventory, ensuring legal business setup, accurate financial tracking, and instilling a business-oriented mindset rather than a hobbyist approach.
Amazon Seller Account Setup
Module 2 covers the entire process of setting up an Amazon Seller Account, including selecting the appropriate account type for your new business, choosing a suitable seller name, and understanding the functionality of the Seller Dashboard.
It provides insights into the distinctions between a Professional and an Individual Amazon Seller Account, guides you in selecting an effective seller name, and walks you through the setup process.
It also familiarizes you with the Seller Central Dashboard and explains the various Amazon fees associated with selling on the platform.
Scanning Apps & Other Supplies
Module 3 focuses on the tools you need to optimize your Amazon business. Jessica teaches you to configure your scanning app for efficient product sourcing in stores and access a curated list of necessary supplies for promptly processing shipments without delays.
Some of the activities in this module include installing and configuring the Amazon Seller App, exploring alternative scanning methods, and setting up the Scoutify 2 App.
Modules 4 and 5: Amazon Categories, Ranks & The Buy Box
Modules 4 and 5 explore the information that Amazon provides to help you determine product sellability, assess its sales performance, and strategize to reach potential buyers.
These modules delve into Amazon categories, ranks, and the Buy Box to empower you with valuable insights for effective product placement and market engagement.
Evaluating If A Product Is Worth Selling
In Module 6, Jessica walks you through the entire process of evaluating a product’s worth for resale. She teaches you how to determine the optimal purchase quantity by analyzing its sales history and evaluating its performance as a seller.
Retail Arbitrage Sourcing
Module 7 of the course teaches you how to find profitable products in conventional retail stores such as Big Lots and Target. Jessica provides you with strategies for effectively navigating various store types and offers a firsthand glimpse into real-life sourcing trips.
She also explores other sourcing methods, like clearance, thrift stores, discount stores, liquidation stores, and regular-priced retail items.
One thing Jessica does that perhaps makes this course the best at retail arbitrage is giving you behind-the-scenes looks at some of her real-life sourcing trips to different stores. She also teaches you how to analyze products using the Amazon Seller App, a crucial tool in the retail arbitrage process.
Online Arbitrage Sourcing
Module 8 focuses on discovering profitable products online, offering an alternative for those averse to in-store visits.
Jessica reveals the tools they use to analyze and decide on products from online stores.
She also talks about the steps she takes to make the business model almost entirely hands-off.
Module 9-10: Pricing & Listing Your Products on Amazon
Modules 9 & 10 of the course offer a step-by-step walkthrough of the entire process of pricing and listing your goods on Amazon.
You’ll learn how to list your products effectively on the platform as well as the strategic pricing techniques to ensure quick sales and maximize profits.
The pricing section covers strategies for different scenarios such as competing with other FBA sellers, pricing when there are no FBA sellers, pricing against Amazon, and handling price drops.
Jessica gives you a rundown of Amazon’s Best Seller Rankings and shows you how to effectively utilize the Buy Box. She also shows you the most beginner-friendly categories and shows you how to navigate restricted or limited categories and brands.
Module 11-13: Prepping – Packing – Shipping
In Modules 11, 12 & 13, the focus is on actively moving profitable products from your house to an Amazon FBA warehouse.
Jessica Larrew talks about packaging products securely, regardless of their type. This will enable you to confidently dispatch your items and efficiently track them until they are live on Amazon for purchase.
You learn how to create a shipping plan, utilize a Thermal (Dymo) Printer, generate an item list for your shipment, appropriately pack your FBA shipments, and finalize the shipment.
Module 14: Managing Your Amazon Account
In Module 14, you’ll learn to manage your sales by tracking your sold items, responding to customer messages, interacting with seller support, and more.
The module covers viewing sold items through Seller Central and the Amazon Seller App, repricing inventory, managing buyer emails, handling stranded inventory, arranging inventory removal, initiating customer returns, and reaching out to seller support.
Amazon Boot Camp Pricing
Amazon Bootcamp had three pricing options:
- An Easy Payment Plan at $195 per month for 3 months
- A One Time Payment of $495
- An Extra Support Option at $995.
The Selling Family Reviews
In my search across the internet, I examined feedback and reviews regarding The Selling Family.
Remarkably, I couldn’t find significant negative comments or criticisms (only minor gripes here and there), which shows that they have a great reputation despite running the Amazon course since 2012.
I just think that people like the way that they only do straightforward and authentic marketing of their course.
They don’t do flashy or exaggerated promotions for their course, something that’s quite ubiquitous in their line of work; therefore, having someone cut to the chase is a breath of fresh air.
The actual results achieved by their students, ranging from $500 to $10,000 in monthly profits, also demonstrate the course’s practicality and effectiveness, a more realistic and reasonable depiction compared to the often exaggerated claims made by other Amazon course sellers.
What We Liked About Amazon Boot Camp
- There are many positive student testimonials and success stories, which show that it is a proven Amazon course.
- The training stands out for its practical, comprehensive, and step-by-step approach.
- There is an active and supportive private community via a Facebook Group that amplifies the learning experience. Engaging with a vibrant community of fellow Amazon sellers helps you along the journey.
- Jessica and Cliff are Amazon sellers who have set up an actual Amazon FBA business and, therefore, know the Amazon site in and out.
Drawbacks of The Amazon Boot Camp
- Jessica’s strategy has only been tested and proven in the United States. If you are not in the US, some of the concepts may not work.
- Scaling the retail arbitrage strategy can be challenging.
- It remains unclear whether Jessica and Cliff actively engage in Amazon selling.
Verdict on The Selling Family Business Model
After carefully evaluating the Amazon Boot Camp, I think it presented a compelling alternative to most other Amazon FBA courses we’ve evaluated.
Unfortunately, you cannot join Amazon Boot Camp anymore as they’ve discontinued it.
Having said that, as I did my research into the course, I got a better understanding of what The Selling Family does.
The strategy they teach (arbitrage) is relatively inexpensive to start and has been shown to deliver a swift return on investment; you can achieve profitability with your online business within just a few weeks rather than wait for several months.
I think it works well if you routinely visit local retail stores because you can just go into a store and browse for products. After doing well with that, you can then move on to more advanced Amazon selling strategies like Private Label and Wholesale.
Having said that, a notable downside of this strategy is that you need to keep actively searching for new products for resale. There is also the small issue of limited scalability because raising beyond a few thousand dollars a month can be challenging.
Before you leave
If you’re tired of scams and want a real solution for making money online, check out my no.1 recommendation.
This is the best business to start in 2023 and made me over 27k last month alone:
David Fortune has been the editor NoBSIMReviews.com since 2019. He is an expert at writing content on stock advisory services, side hustles, reviewing online business opportunities and many more topics. You can learn more about David on our about us page.