August 27, 2015

#4 – Amazon Business Setup

Today’s Episode, Episode #4,  is part 2 of the 10-part series,  “The Amazing FBA Startup System”.
This  was originally going to be a 5-Part series, then I expanded it to 7 parts. But to avoid mind-blowingly long and detailed episodes, I’ve decided to split up the whole area of Sourcing products from China (coming up in Parts 4-7). Hence the 10 resulting episodes.
In this episode is where we move on from the Research phase beloved of wantrepreneurs to actually making some early commitments by registering a company, and an internet domain.

 Glossary of Technical Terms used in Podcast:

Domain name – a particular web address, e.g.,

Web hosting – this is where a company like bluehost will store your website on their computers. I use

Content Management System (CMS) – this is basically a place where you can manage your website and edit it, like I’m doing right now, typing in this text and formatting it, or uploading photos etc. The most standard one for most blogs is WordPress, which is what I use.

HMRC – Her Majesty’s Revenue & Customs, i.e., the Inland Revenue aka the UK Tax Office

Tools and resources mentioned in the Podcast:

Trademark check in USA: USPTO (United States Patent and Trademark Office)

Domain availability I advise against using 123-reg to actually register a domain. Do it when you also set up webhosting with bluehost. com. Just use this as a check.

Registering a company in England/Wales:

Opening a Bank account:

Just use the Companies Made Simple deal with HSBC.

Or do as I do and use Metrobank. They have various options; I opted for the “Online Business Plus” account, which costs £10 a month basic fee. This allows you to do various useful things for the Amazon business, including most importantly, make international payments.

Avoid Santander Business Bank at all costs!

Setting up a Website:

Domain name purchase, web hosting, Content Management System (CMS)

Domain name purchase – Various websites will offer these, eg, I prefer to have a one-stop shop so I use for both domain name buying and web hosting.

A .com domain for a year should cost you around $12.

Web hosting– loads of options. Bluehost seems good. I’ve used them for setting up probably 10 websites over the past 5 years.  I moved to for my hosting and regretted it, not because they don’t do this hosting job well, but because it is harder to do other things. Bluehost has excellent how-to video guides too. – pros: very easy to set up, easy to edit, easy to look pretty. Integrates domain name registration, hosting and CMS. Free.

Cons: not very customisable.  Not as standard if you want to hire a techie to edit in future. – pros: very easy to set up, easy to edit, easy to look pretty. Integrates domain name registration, hosting and CMS.

Cons: not very customisable.  Not as standard if you want to hire a techie to edit in future. Email is set up via gmail. While gmail is excellent, I had massive trouble trying to get email working for a site I set up with weebly. In fact 3 months on, I haven’t solved it. Avoid for this reason. – Pros: very standard for any techie you use now or in future. Integrates domain name registration, hosting and CMS.You can do a one-click WordPress install via the Control Panel. Easy and quick to set up email addresses (very important).

Cons: Not as easy to set up as weebly or wix. Not as easy to customise layout.  Costs $3.95 a month for hosting (small potatoes in my book but maybe you are on a super-tight budget)

Hiring Freelancers. – I’ve used this to get some product research done on to save myself hours of tedium. I’ve since started using Jungle Scout for this as they now cover the UK too.

Basically, people offer “Gigs” of specific services and you can choose between them. It is therefore the simplest of all outsourcing sites that I’ve come across, and normally the cheapest. As the name implies, costs a mere 5 dollars, although you may need more add-on services to make something useable in real life. Still generally very good value.

There are tons of web designers and other techie people here, although I confess I have yet to use their services. – this used to be and, which have become united into this one site.

Elance was a famous site and well regarded; assuming that Upwork has taken on the best of this old site, it should be good. Probably slightly more expensive than I confess I have not used this yet. – similar in essence to Upwork. Again, it’s been in business for several years and has a good reputation. I confess I’ve not used this either yet.

The Amazing FBA Startup System

To catch the next Episodes in the 10 part “Amazing FBA Startup System”, subscribe to the podcast – here are the instructions on how to do that:


A podcast is a free downloadable audio show that enables you to learn while you’re on the go.  To subscribe to my podcast for free, you’ll need an app to listen to the show from.

For iPhone/iPad/iPod listeners – Grab your phone or device and go to the iTunes store and search “Amazing FBA”  This will help you to download the free Podcasts App (produced by Apple) and then subscribe to the show from within that app.  Every time I produce a new episode, you’ll get it downloaded right on your iDevice.

For Android listeners – Download the Stitcher Radio app (free) and search for “Amazing FBA Podcast.”  Or, if you have already downloaded a podcasting client, follow the directions in the next sentence.

For podcast enthusiasts – If you already listen to podcasts and have a podcatcher that you prefer, the feed you’ll need to add is: http://

For those who don’t have a mobile device – You can always listen to the show by clicking the audio file at the top of this page.

If you have any queries, just go to


Watch How to Protect Yourself, and Get taken seriously by Chinese Suppliers

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Michael Veazey

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  1. Hi Michael

    Thanks for the podcast – great to hear about the Amazon business from an international perspective.

    I am in the UK and sell on Amazon UK but not PL yet. I am keen to sell on Amazon US as you do, as well and wondered about the requirements for a non US company selling goods in the US. Do you need to register with the IRS as well? Also are there annual reporting/tax liabilities?

    Thanks again for your help


    1. Hi Helen, thanks for your question. I am no accounting or tax expert but I believe that the following things are true.

      First yes you need to register with an E I N number with the customs people. There should be a link to that in the relevant episode, I don’t have that handy offhand.

      Regarding tax, the situation with sales tax in the USA and Amazon is very complex and is evolving. Even Accountants don’t seem to agree never mind the rest of us! So for now maybe just set a little bit of money aside for sales tax. If you are not resident oil company is not resident in the USA, as far as I know they are not liable for income tax or corporation tax. However I am not an accountant this is not professional advice, if you want a definitive answer you need to find an accountant who is an expert in this area, not easy to find!

      By all means talk to an expert, but bear in mind that if you have no sales, tax is just a theory and not relevant anyway. If I were you, I would get on with forming a business and making sales, and if you have sales and therefore have taxed to pay, I would deal with it at that stage. But that’s a decision everyone has to make for themselves.
      Good luck!

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