Supplies Needed for Getting Started in Amazon FBA

When I first started out with Amazon FBA, there was a handful of supplies I needed to get me through my first shipments.  These are the bare minimums you will need if you are thinking of sending inventory Amazon.

In addition to a laptop/computer, you will need: 

Amazon FBA Shipping Supplies Listpacking supplies for fba

  • Inkjet printer
  • Address labels, 30-up
  • Cardboard boxes
  • Scale
  • Measuring Tape
  • Packing material
  • Packing tape
  • Stretch wrap
  • Poly bags with suffocation warning
  • Scotty peeler

The Bare Minimum Done CHEAP! 

I will tell you how to get away with the bare minimum and do things as cheaply as possible.  When you are first starting your Amazon FBA business, you do not want your overhead costs to be too high.  If you have little to no money at all, you want to make sure you have at least the bare minimum in supplies to start.  

An Inkjet Printer 

You will need an inkjet printer to print out the product and shipping labels.  Any standard inkjet printer will work.  There are sellers out there with their DYMO shipping printers but if you can’t afford that, all you need is a basic inkjet to start.  

You’re going to hear people say “never use an inkjet” and they say this because they think that their labels could get wet in transit and be ruined.  To avoid this, cover the labels with the clear packing tape.  If you can’t afford that fancy printer make due with what you have.  The same clear packing tape you use to close the boxes, you can use over the labels too and nothing will smear or get wet in transit.  

Address Labels, 30-Up 

You will need standard 30-up address labels to print out your product label barcodes.  Avery 18160 and 5160; there are also some generic ones available as well.  You could print them out on a blank sheet of paper and using packing tape to stick them on but a small package of these labels is $4.44 at Walmart.  The time and tape it would take you do it yourself is not worth it, just buy some address labels.

Clear Packaging Tape

You have to have packaging tape, I would also suggest a packing tape gun to dispense your tape because it makes things go quicker.  You will need packing tape for just about everything, so it’s good to have a few rolls on hand.  We buy our clear packing tape at Walmart, that seems to be the cheapest locally.

Scotty Peelers

Scotty peelers are handy little flat headed tools that assist in removing stickers.  When you buy things at the thrift store or on clearance, they have these pesky stickers on the product that have to be removed.  

The Scotty peeler costs a few bucks and it saves you a lot of trouble trying to peel the stickers off yourself.  In addition to Scotty peelers, having some Goo Gone or rubbing alcohol will help remove any adhesive left behind from the sticker.

Cardboard Boxes Free Shipping Boxes for Amazon FBA

You can buy cardboard boxes but I prefer to get mine free behind Walmart.  My husband asked the workers on the dock when the best time to come back and get boxes was, they told him any time after midnight.  We’ve been getting free boxes ever since.  There are lots of places that have tons of boxes they will give you for free, you just need to ask.  I suggest Walmart because they have tons of box sizes to choose from.  You can use used boxes for Amazon FBA shipments as long as you cover up any existing barcodes on the outside of the boxes.

Measuring Tape

You have to measure the boxes that you are going to ship to Amazon.  Each box has to be measured before you can print a shipping label. You can buy a cheap measuring tape at your local dollar store, Walmart also has some cheap ones.

Scale

You need a scale to weigh your shipments.  The entire box has to be measured and weighed before you can print a shipping label.  An alternative to a shipping scale is using your bathroom scale until you can afford a shipping scale.   We measured all our boxes on the bathroom scale until we had enough profit to buy a shipping scale.

Packing Material Supplies needed for FBA

When sending your boxes into Amazon you want to make sure they are packed nice and tight so that nothing is moving around.   You are NOT allowed to use shredded paper, crinkle paper, newspaper or packing peanuts to pack your boxes.  

Unfortunately, those are the cheapest packing materials to use and they are not allowed.   

What we do to cut down on costs is buy several of those rolls of cheap wrapping wrapper from the dollar store.  We also save our plastic grocery bags from the store and use those to stuff down inside the box.   Wrapping paper and plastic bags have served us very well as cheap packing material.

Stretch Wrap

Stretch wrap is used to protect your products.  You can buy a large roll of stretch wrap fairly cheaply at Lowe’s or online.  I use stretch wrap to cover products that I don’t want to get dirty or messed up in the Amazon warehouse.  I pretty much stretch wrap all my stuff that I send into Amazon unless it requires a bag. 

Poly Bags with Suffocation Warnings

Poly bags are required for certain items that get sent into Amazon warehouses.  Not all items require poly bagging but chances are you are going to need them at some point.  During the shipment process you will be told what items will require you to bag them.  Some toys require a poly bag because the items inside are loose or sticking out of the packaging.  All poly bags must be 1.5 ml thick and have a suffocation warning on them.  I buy my poly bags on Amazon because they are the cheapest I’ve seen. 

Cheapest Shipping Supplies for Amazon FBA

  • An inkjet printer is cheaper than a DYMO and you probably already have one.
  • You can buy the address labels at Walmart the cheapest, Amazon and any office supply store will have them too.  
  • Do not pay for cardboard boxes if you are just starting out, there are just too many places to get free ones, you don’t have to have brand new boxes, used boxes are just as good.  
  • You definitely are going to need a scale and measuring tape for the shipping part.  
  • You can weigh the box on a bathroom scale and you can find measuring tape at any dollar store or cheap retailer like Walmart.  
  • For packing material I use grocery bags and cheap wrapping paper to stuff the box.  
  • Packing tape is cheapest at Walmart.  
  • Stretch wrap and poly bags should be purchased on Amazon along with the Scotty Pealer, you’re definitely going to need one or two of those.

Optional items I use sometimes are “Goo Gone” to remove sticky residue left behind from price tags and stickers, also, alcohol rub to remove the “Goo Gone” residue.  Both of these items are very inexpensive and can be found at Walmart or Target. 

Prepare Before You Plan to Ship to Amazon

These are the Amazon FBA shipping supplies you should have on hand when sending in shipments to Amazon fulfillment warehouses.  It helps to have it all in advance before you actually get ready to ship because you don’t want to be running back and forth getting the things you need.  It’s time consuming enough having to pack everything up and label it so be sure to have all your Amazon FBA shipping supplies right in front of you before you start packing your items. It’s much easier to prep a shipment when you have everything you need from the start. 

You’re going to hear a lot of feedback from people in Amazon FBA groups on Facebook about shipping supplies that you HAVE TO HAVE but take it with a grain of salt please, do your research and see if you can’t find a cheaper option that works for you if you’re first starting out.  A lot of them in these groups have been doing this a longer period of time and they have money to invest back into their business on better shipping supplies they need for FBA.  

If you’re just starting out, YOU CAN DO THINGS CHEAPER!  It may take a little more effort on your part, but at first, you will have more time than money.  

All images are owned by Author.


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