It’s time to dust off your notepads and sharpen your pencils, because after a two-year hiatus, the Amazon Seller School is back in session! With a new episode that promises to be both insightful and empowering, our host, Todd Welch, is ready to share his wealth of experience in running a successful Amazon wholesale business. The lessons derived from Todd’s journey can provide aspiring Amazon wholesalers with an effective roadmap to follow. This blog post summarises the key takeaways from the relaunch episode of our beloved podcast.
Todd’s Amazon Journey: A Refresher
In this comeback episode, Todd reintroduces himself and his Amazon journey. He walks us through his path from holding a full-time job to successfully running his own Amazon business. He shares his experiences in retail arbitrage, private labeling, and wholesale, offering vital tips that every Amazon seller should consider.
The Power of Proper Cash Flow and Bookkeeping
Todd takes a deep dive into the importance of having a proper cash flow template and a reliable bookkeeper. In his view, these two elements are instrumental in running a successful Amazon business. He shares his experiences with cash flow and bookkeeping, providing the audience with insights into how they can manage their finances more effectively.
Obstacles: The Stepping Stones to Success
In the world of entrepreneurship, challenges are inevitable. Todd openly discusses the various obstacles he faced and the strategies he adopted to overcome them. These experiences provide practical lessons to anyone looking to start or grow their Amazon business.
The relaunch episode gives us three essential points to ponder:
- Understanding Your Cash Flow: A solid cash flow template can be the backbone of a thriving Amazon business. It enables you to track your earnings and manage your expenses efficiently.
- Invest in a Bookkeeper: A competent bookkeeper can alleviate the stress of managing finances, allowing you to concentrate on growing your business.
- Challenges are Opportunities: Every obstacle presents a chance to learn and improve. Todd’s experiences underscore this reality beautifully.
Whether you’re just starting your Amazon selling journey or looking to take your business to the next level, the Amazon Seller School is your go-to resource. The relaunch episode is a reservoir of invaluable advice for anyone aiming to grow their Amazon venture. So why wait? Join Todd Welch in this informative journey and lay the foundation for your own Amazon success story.
Resources From This Episode
- Amazon Wholesale Reverse Sourcing Method
- Pat Flynn’s Smart Passive Income
- Scott Voelker’s Rock Your Brand
- TC-TEKS Computers: Todd’s first business.
- Amazon Seller School budget cashflow template: Todd’s tool for managing finances.
- Chrysalis: The company Todd worked for in Utah.
- Amazon Wholesale 6 Figures Fast Path Masterclass
- Wholesale vs. Private Label vs. Retail Arbitrage
Welcome fellow entrepreneurs to the Amazon Sellers School podcast, where we talk about Amazon Wholesale and how you can use it to build an e-commerce empire, a side hustle, and anything in between. And now, your host Todd Welch.
What is going on? It is great to be back on the podcast. Todd Welch here with Amazon Seller School, formerly Amazon Seller School. And it has been a couple years since I last recorded a podcast for you all, and it is great to be back. It’s been a heck of a two years for me growing my Amazon wholesale business, and I just decided that I really want to get back on the podcast, interviewing people in this business and helping you improve your Amazon business, start selling on Amazon, whatever the case may be, whether you’re just starting out or you’re growing your business, or perhaps you’re way bigger than what I am right now. So it is great to be back, and I’m gonna be relaunching the podcast here. We’re gonna be putting out new episodes every week for you. And I wanted to kick it off just by reintroducing myself for everyone out there, everyone who’s listened to me in the past, and everyone who is brand new, so that you know my background, where I’m at and where I’m coming from.
So let’s go ahead and dive into this and just tell you a little bit about my history and where I’m at in my Amazon journey. So since we last spoke, I was doing a couple years ago about $90,000 in sales per month. Now we’re doing over $300,000 in sales per month, and on pace to break $4 million in sales this year in 2023. And that is almost 100% doing the Amazon wholesale method where I’m selling other people’s products. But before we dive into that further, let me tell you a little bit about my background. So I got started in the e-commerce journey, in my e-commerce journey back in 1994 when I created a website called Best Teen. I was about 14 years old at the time, and created this website because I was starting to learn how to program computers and just wanted to do it for fun.
And this website had games on it and email newsletters, chat rooms and things like that for teenagers. And I started making a few hundred dollars a month, and that’s how I got a taste of e-commerce. And that went on for several months a year perhaps before those companies really started realizing that it wasn’t worth paying me one, two, $3 to get an email sign up. And so that kind of quickly went down. And from there I was dabbling selling on eBay and such, but I really went the way that they teach us to do in public school, which is to go to college and get a job. So I went to the Chippewa Valley Technical College. I got a couple associates degrees, one in computer programming, one in computer networking, and I went on to get my bachelor’s degree as well in computer information systems and software technologies.
And out of college, I bounced around from job to job. So if you’re the kind of person who gets bored at your work after about a year, which was my case, and I would then want to jump to the next job, we probably have similar personalities. I was always getting bored in my jobs after I learned everything, which I found was after about a year. And so I bounced from working at the city of Eau Claire to working for Menards, working for Marshville Clinic until I started my first business in 2006, which was called TC Text Computers. And we helped repair other people’s computers, repair their phones and things like that, remove viruses. And I ran that business all the way from 2006 to 2016, and we built that to have three different retail locations. And I ended up finding more or getting back into selling online in about the 2014 timeframe when I found out about selling on Amazon.
Up until then, I was just doing little things on eBay, things like that. But I came across a couple guys, you might know their names, pat Flynn over at Smart Passive Income, and Scott Volcker, who at the time was the amazing seller and has now moved on to rock your brand. And he’s teaching people how to sell on Etsy. But they really piqued my interest in selling online and selling on Amazon. So I really went into that rabbit hole to the point where in 2016, I’m like, I need to get out of my repair and computers business because I really want to get into this Amazon game. And so in 2016, I sold TC computers, my shares of it anyways, to one of our employees. So that employee took over my part of the business with my business partner, and they are still running that business today.
It’s still a success up there in Wisconsin and running alarm. But I moved into selling on Amazon. Now, before I went full-time, I actually took another job after selling TC Tech’s computers because it didn’t make me a millionaire. I essentially got paid for giving someone else that job that I had working on computers. And so I took a job as a IT manager for Clark County. And during that time, I was working full-time during the day doing Amazon full-time at night and on the weekends building Amazon. And really I was into trying to build my own private label brand and trying to do retail arbitrage. So private label, if you’re not familiar, is where you are creating your own products. And retail arbitrage is where you’re buying products from Walmart, Goodwill, clearance items, things like that. And then flipping them on Amazon. And I got pretty good at it.
I really got my Amazon business up to about 80 to $90,000 per month by doing retail arbitrage. Now, the private label that I did, I launched a couple private label products, and they didn’t really go anywhere too far. They were base hits maybe, but not great. I, I chose the wrong products. I picked products that I couldn’t really differentiate. The price point was too low and it was very difficult, but it was a really good learning experience to learn how to launch your own product and sell it on Amazon. But where I had my first success was in retail arbitrage. As I said, I got that doing 80 to $90,000 in sales per month. And so by 2018, I’m like, okay, I’m ready to do this full-time. I’m selling $90,000 a month. I am doing awesome. Let’s do this. So I left my full-time job, which was paying me $90,000 a year, by the way, salary and went full-time in the business.
Now, in hindsight, that was a big mistake because at $90,000 in sales per month doing retail arbitrage, that was not enough money to be able to pay myself the salary that I had gotten used to. So when I left my business, of course I had established a lifestyle of $90,000 per year. And so I wanted to maintain that lifestyle, and I thought I could. But unfortunately, at that point, I was not familiar enough with my numbers. I didn’t have a bookkeeper yet. I was doing my accounting myself, and I didn’t have a good enough handle on my numbers. And so I thought I was more profitable than I really was. And so when I left my full-time job and started pulling money out of the business, that immediately, well, not immediately, but very quickly within the first few months, made it more and more difficult to continue buying products.
Because when it comes to selling on Amazon, whether it’s retail arbitrage, private label, wholesale, the business is very cash intensive. Any retail business where you’re carrying inventory is cash intensive because you have to have the inventory to be able to keep selling, right? So once I started paying myself a salary from the business, that was money that I no longer could put back in the business and keep Bill buying more products. And so what I realized is that by taking the salary out of the business, I was going down and down and down. And by the time I really realized that and started figuring out what was happening, I was in the hole about 60, 70, maybe $80,000 underwater. I owed this on credit cards and Amazon loans that I had taken and things like that. And so I decided that, okay, this is not working the way I am doing it.
I need to take another job. And in that time, my wife and I actually decided to move from Wisconsin where I grew up to Utah. And so what I did is I knew I had to take another job to keep the business going. So I flew out to Utah in the Salt Lake City area. I was driving around looking for places that we could rent, and at the same time interviewing for jobs out there in Utah. And I ended up finding a job at a company called Chrysalis, which is a really cool company that helps people with disabilities and mental disabilities and such helps better their life, essentially, find work for them, help them go through daily life, things like that. And I became their system administrator, and they even paid my moving expenses to move from Wisconsin out to Utah.
And so took that job. And while I was working that job here, now again, I am working 80 hours weeks, right? Full-Time job, still trying to do the Amazon full-time. And I switched from doing primarily retail arbitrage to doing this new method that I had found, which is called Amazon Wholesale. And with this, instead of going to Walmart and Goodwill, which are is good ways by the way, to, to flip things and make money on Amazon, but it’s a never ending grind, right? Having to find those products. Instead of doing that now, I started reaching out directly to the brands and two distributors of those brands to buy products that I could continually reorder, reorder, reorder. And after about five to six months of being in that new job and doing Amazon Wholesale as the main method on Amazon, we decided to get a warehouse, a 2000 square foot warehouse and start building the wholesale business, put up pallet racking, all these different racks, got all the bins, started storing all the product in there and everything.
And that was going really well. My father-in-law is helping me prep the products, helping to receive the products and ship the products. And we started really going up on the Amazon wholesale to the point where in 2020, I was able to go full-time in wholesale. And this time I had a bookkeeper. I was getting my monthly numbers, my nu monthly profit and loss statement and balance sheet. I was using my financial two week cashflow that you can download on Amazon Seller School. By the way, you can get my budget cashflow template that I use for every two weeks when we get our Amazon disbursements, make sure we’re tracking all of our expenses, we’re not spending more money than we are bringing in. And so 2020 went full time again and things were going really well, and we decided to move down here to Florida, and where I got a 5,000 square foot warehouse, move to a state where there is no income tax, and now we’re saving a little bit on our income tax.
And now at this point, I am doing $300,000, well over $300,000 in sales per month on our wholesale business. We’ve got, let’s see, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 full-time people here in the United States and about 10 virtual assistants in the Philippines doing sourcing and things like that. This year we are on track to break $4 million on Amazon doing the Amazon wholesale method. So now that I’ve got all of this in place, I feel like I’m back in a position to where I can get back on the microphone, get back to doing the podcast, and these things that I really enjoy doing, helping you guys grow. Pat Flynn and Scott Volker, as I mentioned, helped me grow. And that’s why I want to do this as well. I I’ve been told that I’m pretty good at it. I, I am good at teaching. And so I wanna help you, like Scott Volcker and Pat Flynn helped me, and hopefully you eventually can blow me out of the water, surpass what I’m doing in Amazon wholesale or whichever route you choose to sell on Amazon, right?
You got the wholesale private label, retail arbitrage, online arbitrage, all those ways that you can make profit on Amazon and build a successful business. Now, a lot of people ask me, is it too late to start selling on Amazon? And the answer is a hundred percent no. It’s definitely more competitive than it was, you know, five years ago, 10 years ago, even two years ago. It’s getting harder for sure, but there’s still a lot of room out the there for someone who really wants to do this. And you can do this as a side hustle or make it your full-time business as a side hustle, you could very quickly start making 500, a thousand, a couple thousand dollars in profit per month. And if you wanna build this into a business, along my journey, I’ve been talking with guys who are selling 60 million, a hundred million, $200 million doing this Amazon wholesale method, and including a lot of them doing the newer method that I have started doing myself, which is Amazon wholesale exclusive method, where I’m getting exclusive agreements with these brands to be the only seller on Amazon.
And in exchange I’m optimizing their listings and helping them sell more products on Amazon. So I really look forward to helping you grow your business or get started selling on Amazon. So relaunching the podcast. You can expect every week I’m gonna be coming out with a new podcast episode. Some of them will be just myself with tips and tricks to help you sell on Amazon. Some of them are gonna be me interviewing other sellers, also interviewing tools and software and things that can help you. People who built businesses, I should say, that can help you sell on Amazon. And so we’re gonna be coming at it from all different angles with the primary goal to help you sell more on Amazon, make your journey easier. So I’m really looking forward to it. I hope you’ll come along. Make sure you subscribe to the podcast. If you’re watching this on YouTube, like and subscribe, hit that little notification bell and you’ll get notified of the new videos that we’re gonna be putting out here really soon. So that’s my story. Welcome back. I am relaunching Amazon Seller School. Really looking forward to taking this journey with you. And with that, this is Todd Welch, signing off. Happy selling everybody.
This has been another episode of the Amazon Seller School podcast. Thanks for listening. Fellow Amazon Seller, and always remember, success is yours. If you take it.