#159 – Here’s a Cool New Way to Sell on Amazon – Hijacker Resistant, Competitor Proof Product Bundles

Episode 159 of the Serious Sellers Podcast hosts an Amazon wholesale bundling expert with tactics that are hijacker resistant and competitor proof.

Are you one of the people that when you hear, “selling on Amazon,” immediately think of a single private label product?

Maybe you’ve understood that selling wholesale on Amazon is a great opportunity, but it requires too much capital to get started.

If both of these statements are true, you’ve come to the right place. Because, today on the Serious Sellers Podcast, Helium 10’s Director of Training and Chief Brand Evangelist, Bradley Sutton welcomes Kristin Ostrander, an expert on Amazon product bundling techniques.

In this episode you’ll hear how you can get into Amazon wholesale for just a few hundred dollars. You’ll also be treated to Kristin’s tactics for creating hijacker resistant, competitor proof Amazon product bundles.

In episode 159 of the Serious Sellers Podcast, Bradley and Kristin discuss:

  • 00:55 – Kristin’s Wholesale Bundling System
  • 04:15 – “This is Not How I Want to Live My Life”
  • 06:40 – Making Ends Meet with eBay
  • 08:00 – The Start of Kristin’s Bundling Idea
  • 09:30 – What Exactly is a Wholesale Product Bundle?
  • 12:00 – Brands Matter but You Can Still Sell “Organics”
  • 13:45 – Creating Your Own Bundles Brand
  • 16:45 – A “Poor Man’s Private Label”
  • 18:00 – Bundling for What Buyers are Searching For
  • 20:45 – What are Kristina’s Go, No Go Metrics? 
  • 23:05 – Competition Proofing Her Bundles
  • 26:00 – Wholesale Success Stories
  • 28:20 – Creating Custom “Hijacker Resistant” Bundles
  • 32:00 – Kristin’s 30 Second Tip
  • 32:30 – How to Connect with Kristin

Enjoy this episode? Be sure to check out our previous episodes for even more content to propel you to Amazon FBA Seller success! And don’t forget to “Like” our Facebook page and subscribe to the podcast on iTunes, Google Play or wherever you listen to our podcast.

Want to absolutely start crushing it on Amazon? Here are few carefully curated resources to get you started:

  • Freedom Ticket: Taught by Amazon thought leader Kevin King, get A-Z Amazon strategies and techniques for establishing and solidifying your business.
  • Ultimate Resource Guide: Discover the best tools and services to help you dominate on Amazon.
  • Helium 10: 20+ software tools to boost your entire sales pipeline from product research to customer communication and Amazon refund automation. Make running a successful Amazon business easier with better data and insights. See what our customers have to say.
  • Helium 10 Chrome Extension: Verify your Amazon product idea and validate how lucrative it can be with over a dozen data metrics and profitability estimation. 
  • SellerTradmarks.com: Trademarks are vital for protecting your Amazon brand from hijackers, and sellertrademarks.com provides a streamlined process for helping you get one.

Transcript

Bradley Sutton: Today’s guest says that bundling is what Amazon buyers are looking for. She’s going to tell us about her wholesale bundling technique, that’s both hijacker resistant and competitor proof. How cool is that? Pretty cool, I think.

Bradley Sutton: Hello everybody. And welcome to another episode of this Serious Sellers Podcast by Helium 10. I am your host, Bradley Sutton, and this is the show that’s a completely BS free, unscripted and unrehearsed organic conversation about serious strategies for serious sellers of any level in the eCommerce world. And I’m happy to welcome to the show today, Kristin. Kristin, let’s start off with a bang. Just give me what is your coolest strategy right off the bat. Your coolest Amazon strategy– takes a couple of minutes or less.

Kristin Ostrander: My favorite and coolest Amazon strategy is my wholesale bundles system. So back in the day I was starting wholesale and I had a little sticker-shock about profit margins. I was thinking profit margins wise. Oh, I’m going to get wholesale accounts, I’m going to sell things online, and I’m going to make 50% or more on my dollar, and it’s going to be awesome. And then I realized the profit margins are really only 10, 15%. There was not a lot of margins. So I started making bundles to sell on Amazon. And that has been my bread and butter ever since, probably about five years strong now doing wholesale bundles. So that is my favorite strategy to use on Amazon to make a decent income.

Bradley Sutton: Love it, love it. And we’re definitely going to be asking you details about how that works. Wholesale bundles is something we haven’t really talked about on the show before. And I think it’s a really cool way for people, especially who are starting off, even if their long term goal still is private label. I think wholesale bundles is a great segue into that. Now let’s take it back a few more years. So, where did you grow up, first of all?

Kristin Ostrander: I grew up in Southeast Michigan, born and raised in Michigan. I say I was born in the North with a Southern soul. I don’t love the winter. I don’t love wintering up in Michigan. It’s a beautiful May through October, but that’s about it. Then I want to move South and be a snowbird. So born and raised in Michigan.

Bradley Sutton: So as you’re a little girl freezing to death in the winter there, what are your aspirations like? What did you think that you were going to be when you grew up?

Kristin Ostrander: Oh, my word, I used to watch Star Search all the time. I wanted to be a singer. I wanted to be a performer.

Bradley Sutton: Star Search. You’re not old enough to know what Star Search, come on.

Kristin Ostrander: I’ve lived and died for that show. I think it was Saturday afternoons that no one could barge in. I was watching that. I think Ed McMahon was the host and I was like, I swear, I’m going to be there wearing a ballgown one day and singing to crowds. But instead I talked to crowds instead.

Bradley Sutton: Love it, love it. Now graduating high school, did you go into college right away?

Kristin Ostrander: I did have a full scholarship to a local college. I went there, but the reality was as I started college, they literally “kicked me out” of college because they said, if you do not declare a major, you have to leave because I took all the prerequisite classes for everything. And I just couldn’t figure out what I wanted to major in. There was nothing for me, everyone else I knew had this passion for– I want to be a teacher. I want to be a nurse. I want to be this. I want to be that. And I’m like, I can’t pick from this list of things I want to be when I grow up. I just had no idea.

Bradley Sutton: That sounds like me. I actually didn’t even. I think by the time I was 19, 20, I had over 150 units. Cause I actually started going to community college and I was still in high school, but I was like, “Ah, let me do computer science, now let me do international business.” And I was just like, couldn’t decide– I actually didn’t get my first degree until 10 years out after I was in high school, I wasn’t going to college for 10 years, but I was kind of similar to you now, what was your first major or regular nine to five kind of job?

Kristin Ostrander: I’ve never actually had a nine to five job. I went straight from high school to– I seek some college classes. I literally– I think it was my second year of college. I got married, super young. I would say high school sweethearts, but my husband was a little bit older than me and we’ve been married for over 20 years now and I ended up still going to college and I had my first child and I waitressed for a while, but my first really real job was besides waitressing, I guess, which no harm, no foul for waitressing, but to make ends meet, I didn’t want to do opposite shifts in my husband. So he would work all day and then he’d say, I want the kids and I’d go to my waitressing job. And I was like, this is not how I want to live my life. And so that’s why I actually started selling on eBay way back in the day to just try to make some extra cash.

Bradley Sutton: Interesting, interesting. So I think– and it’s important, I think to go over some of these questions, they’re not serious strategies for serious sellers like the tagline, but the point is that a lot of times it’s our life strategies in life journey of where– what brings us to become an Amazon seller or an e-commerce seller. And it’s very interesting to me that everybody always has a different journey. We’ve had so many mothers, so many wives on the show and their journey actually is nothing like yours. I mean, everybody is different and we still somehow all end up in the same place. And that’s why I definitely want to stress the listeners out there and be like, don’t think that, Oh, you can’t relate to people who are successful. I mean, it doesn’t matter what your background is. Anybody can become an eCommerce seller. Now you, you actually weren’t one of those that we’ve had on the show before, who had that entrepreneurial bug from an early age and, and was selling baseball cards at six years old, or something like that. It was actually something later in life for you. So–

Kristin Ostrander: It’s funny you mentioned that though, because I had no idea that I had an entrepreneurial spirit or what that actually was when I was younger. I was just always super frugal with my money. My dad would be like, you have this budget for school clothes, and I would be super thrifty about it. So I could have the rest for whatever I wanted. And then I actually used to sell candy bars to friends at school. I never realized I was an entrepreneur when I did that. Cause I’d buy candy, extra, from the ice cream truck and things. And then I’d like sell it to friends at school. I had no idea that I was in business. I just did that naturally. Cause I liked earning. I like to make it a profit. And I think that’s why.

Bradley Sutton: So, maybe you did have that bug. You didn’t realize it then. Huh?

Kristin Ostrander: Right. And no one– I didn’t, I wasn’t raised in an entrepreneurial family, and 20 years ago or so it was like, Oh, I almost felt like it was frowned upon, you were kind of unemployed if you didn’t– if you were an entrepreneur. And so, when I started selling things on eBay, it was more out of necessity. eBay was pretty new at the time. It was 2003, I think when I started. And–

Bradley Sutton: What kind of stuff were you selling on eBay

Kristin Ostrander: To make ends meet, cause my husband’s job was a commercial construction, so it’s like feast or famine, 80 hours a week or zero. So, I would just– my youngest daughter was born or my middle child was born and I sold her Easter dress that you pay an outrageous amount for, they wear one time and then you never have it. And if someone said you should sell that on eBay, people are buying children’s clothes. And so I started selling my kids’ clothes and realized that I could just sell their clothes and turn around and use the money to buy them new clothes. So it was kind of a wash. I wasn’t necessarily profiting. And then I started to thrift and yard sale for things to flip and sell and I was hooked since.

Bradley Sutton: Okay. And then what year did you discover Amazon?

Kristin Ostrander: In 2008, I started selling on Amazon. Some, I think it was an advertisement or something somehow came through my inbox from who knows where, and it was a sell books on Amazon and you couldn’t ship them in at first. I just didn’t ship them in FBA. It wasn’t even a thing. Back then, you could literally send everything in one box with no labels. And it was– I call it the Midas touch days when everything’s sold like super-fast.

Bradley Sutton: Right. Did you develop this wholesale bundle model back then? Or was this something that developed over time?

Kristin Ostrander: It was an over time development and I was going full time in to, I want to make this Amazon thing way bigger than it was. I knew retail arbitrage was not going to be sustainable because it was just– I couldn’t get the volume that I needed. So I started looking into wholesale and that’s kind of when I was thinking, I just– I was thinking I’m going to get wholesale accounts and I’m going to– I was assuming at the time back then. It was 2014 or so. I was assuming that the prices were going to be at least half of what retail was. So I was certainly shocked. And so as I was moving through retail arbitrage, realizing it wasn’t scalable for what I wanted to do, looking into wholesale. And then when we saw the wholesale realized there wasn’t a whole lot of profit in a lot of the things that we were looking into, is when I thought maybe we could put some things together to sell, like as a kit, as a gift set, if you will. And so I started putting gift sets together, like children’s toy gift sets and grocery gift sets of like, not gift sets for groceries, but multi-packs and variety packs of grocery items. And they just took off so quickly that I haven’t looked back since, cause there’s just more profit margin when you put things together.

Bradley Sutton: Okay. Let’s do an example of, I mean maybe it was how you started or how you discovered it, but I think wholesale bundle might be a new term for a lot of listeners out there. Can you give us a specific example of what a wholesale bundle would mean for one of you or your students?

Kristin Ostrander: For sure. A wholesale bundle is a combination of products that you would buy from a wholesale source that are highly complementary, that are used together, that work together to fit together. It provides speed, convenience and variety for your customer. And an example would be one of the first bundles I made were at least little toys called Shopkins. They’re kind of phasing out at this point, but back then they were super-hot, and they were flying off shelves and they were pretty cheap. Everybody wanted them and single unit items from wholesale, just weren’t– there were a negative profit. You’re losing money on them selling them on Amazon. And so I put two or three different packages of Shopkins together, along with a carrying case. So they could store the little tiny toys in the carrying case and I put a different ones together. So it’s highly complementary, you’ve got the toys, you’ve got a carrying case to put it in and the customer’s happy because they feel like they’re getting this great value. They’re getting four or five different things that all go together. Another example would be in the grocery department. One of the first grocery bundles I made was a variety pack of granola bars because we always bought the huge Costco size. And there was always this one flavor left over that nobody in the family would eat. And I thought, I wish I could get a variety pack that didn’t have this flavor in it. And so I thought, well, if I think that other people might want a variety pack of different ones, that they don’t like this other flavor. And so I put a variety pack of different granola bars together and that flew off the shelf. So I felt like I was on to something at that point.

Bradley Sutton: Okay. Interesting. Interesting. Now I think one question that a lot of people might have nowadays, probably five years ago, you didn’t have to worry about this is about brand gating and things like that. So are there situations where you cannot create a new ASIN with the original brand? If it is, let’s just say for example, Nike or something, you’re combining two Nike, I don’t know why anybody would combine two Nike shoes, but let’s just say you are, I don’t think you would be able to create a new listing that says that that’s what the Nike brand. So when you run into something like that, what do you do?

Kristin Ostrander: One of the strategies that I teach within my wholesale bundle system is to not always go after these big branded items. I think that there’s a huge myth out there. You have to sell big branded household name, branded items to make a decent living on Amazon or to make any money at all. The beauty of wholesale bundles is you can create bundles and products that have necessarily nothing to do with a brand. Now, brands are optional when you want to put them in, but then you run into issues with UPC codes or DTI and exemptions, and brand registry and things like that. So yes, that’s definitely an issue. You wouldn’t be able to create a brand new ASIN with three Nike golf shirts, because you would have to then– will set under the Nike brand and you wouldn’t have a UPC and it’s on the list. So there’s definitely branding issues when it comes to things like that. But what we teach is to do what I consider a generic item. And when I say generic, I don’t mean cheap knockoff, kind of generic. I mean, tarps and bungee cords are a perfect match. It’s a perfect bundle. And they don’t have brand names that everyone would recognize. I mean, I don’t think anyone in the world can name a tarp brand or brand of bungee cords. They’re just like, I just need these two things and they work together. And so, strategically planning what you bundle based on research data of what people are searching for. So not everybody– for Nike shoes, of course you want to buy branded Nike shoes. Cause they’re awesome. But if you’re looking for a tarps and bungee cords, which people buy millions of every single year, the idea is that it’s not– it doesn’t have to be sexy. It just has to sell.

Bradley Sutton: Okay, interesting. So, it doesn’t even have to be the same brand. I could maybe do some research and say– keeping with my weird analogy of Nike shoes, but I could say, Hey, at Nike shoes, with generic arm band or something, because we have research that shows that people who have these running shoes need an arm band to wipe their sweat or whatever, but in something like that, what would you put as the brand name in this new listing that you’re creating when it’s multiple brands?

Kristin Ostrander: When it’s multiple brands that we have a suggestion that you create your own bundle brand, so it’s– you’re creating your own brand. For example, there’s a lot of my favorite example to use of someone who has done this really well is on Amazon is called the hangry kit. So in the hangry kit, there is a box and this is our brand, the hangry kit. And what they do is they sell a combination of all kinds of grocery items, granola bars, the little packages of nuts, snacks. It’s basically a snack pack and they have all these brands within that, but they don’t name the brands. Instead, they create this bundle with all these mixed brands in them, but they call it– people are searching for attributes. So when they’re saying I’m looking for a snack pack to send my college kid or a military gift package that I want to send overseas to my soldier and they’re—people aren’t necessarily searching for Nature Valley granola bars. What they’re searching for is a military gift pack or a care package that they’re trying to send to their college student or something like that. And so you’re ranking for the keywords, for the attributes rather than the brand. And so my training is always teaching people to create your listing and optimize your listing, not necessarily around brands, but around the attributes that people are searching for so that you can come up in search. Your bundle will come up in search without worrying about brands or brand exemptions or brand names.

Bradley Sutton: That is classic. I mean, as you’re saying this, as you guys know, whenever I interview, I tried to do as little research, no as little as possible to kind of just be learn along with everybody else. I literally don’t know much about this. So I I’m typing in hangry kit on Amazon right now. And when she’s saying this and I’m like, this is just genius because I’m looking here at this picture, it says like a 50 pack. And I could see all the brands in the picture, like I can see there’s grandma’s cookies and cheese and all these other stuff I can’t eat right now, since I’m on a diet, but there’s– the brand name is, I’m just looking at this one here that has Amazon’s choice for snacks, gift basket is snack chest or something. There’s nothing gated about that. And they’re not using any branded words in their listing that might make Amazon mad or might make somebody go after them. And this is a cool idea. So the actual strategy around this, for holes– for people doing the traditional wholesale, again, Nike, you’re trying to just, you’re not really worried about listing optimization and things like that because you’re just trying to capitalize on the Nike name and the listing could be garbage and you still make sales. But the strategy of promotion on this, I would imagine is almost similar to the private label where you’re trying to rank for, like you said, the keywords that people are using a search for things like this. Is that the case where that’s how your ranking strategy is, and you actually have to run PPC and things like that on these keywords?

Kristin Ostrander: The fun thing about that is I have two things to say, number one is, it was when I started this, it was kind of my poor man’s private label. That’s kind of, I coined that term years ago because at the time I couldn’t necessarily afford to jump into wholesale or to private label at the time I had some ideas, but as I was looking into it, it was just really costly and it wasn’t instant and I just didn’t have the time. So I supplement it with these, I thought I can put these bundles together at a low risk cost. I don’t– if I’m buying from a wholesaler, I just have to meet their minimums. Maybe it’s one case of something. So I can test out 12 bundles to see how they do. If they do well, I can always increase the volume. If they don’t do as well as I thought, then I could move on to making a different bundle. And so I didn’t have to have this big long term, deep pocket investment of private label and manufacturing and creating a brand around something and all that kind of stuff. Although I’ve moved into that now with my bundle brand, but the reality was I didn’t have to start that way, but yes, the strategy is involved with the keywords and optimizing your listing for the attributes of what’s in the bundle. So the hangry kit, for example, that is it’s optimized by the snack gift set, or for the military care package, or the college student care package snack gift, or whatever. So we know by using the data, using Helium 10 to look up the keywords and all these different things. We know people are searching for those. So we build bundles around what people are searching for. I honestly rarely, rarely use PPC because I do all of my research ahead of time on the bundles. I don’t put a bundle together that I don’t think will sell. I do all the research and the data ahead of time. So I know when I press go, people are looking for those items and because I’m meeting a need for the customer. A bundle meets a need for a customer, it creates speed and convenience. We’re one-click society. Everyone wants to just add something to the cart and have it in their house in two days. They don’t want to piece together gift sets. They don’t want to piece together variety packs. If you can get someone to buy something with one click, you’re going to get a sale a lot faster. And so I pride myself on organic search, as much as possible so that I don’t have to spend a lot of money with PPC trying to get things off the ground because I just try to sell what the data is telling me customers are looking for.

Bradley Sutton: Interesting. Now, how– if not PPC then on the ones that you do, how do you improve? How do you get visible to people? Or do you pick things where just right off the bat, there’s so few people selling it that you’re already going to be on page one for a keyword. That’s got to be pretty rare, right?

Kristin Ostrander: When people look at the frequently purchased together and they make clothing bundles, for example, you’ll see a lot of people buying t-shirts for their seven-year-old little boys. It’s got a design, a dinosaur or something on it. It’s really not branded. It’s not a big brand. And he would know about it. Maybe it could be something you’re picking up from Walmart or wholesale or whatever, but the reality is a lot of parents buy, not just one, but they’ll buy four or five different outfits for their five to seven-year-olds, because it’s just easy and convenient. They know the size that they’re wearing. And so I had a client put together these outfit sets for these bundles. And so you get three t-shirts, three pairs of shorts, and three coordinating pairs of socks, and it’s a hundred bucks out the door. And a mom is really happy to just add that to the cart and move on rather than trying to shop around and figure out, if you ever take the kid shopping, you know how much of a nightmare it is, so it’s way easier to just buy it on Amazon. And so, it’s things like that. Mothers are people, the search data even is already telling us that people are looking for these clothing sets or these things together. And so we basically just make it easy for them to shop in bulk and all at once, rather than individually adding things to the cart.

Bradley Sutton: Okay. Now, when you’re looking at Helium 10, and trying to decide if there’s enough demand or something, what are you looking at? Are you looking at search volume? Are you looking at the sales of the individual components of the items to know that there’s demand for the product itself? Or what’s kind of your go, no-go metrics that you’re looking for?

Kristin Ostrander: Okay. So one of the things that I love to look for is definitely search volume. You want to make sure that the single unit item that you have, that you’re considering as part of your bundle is doing well already. So, at least 3000 searches a month for that keyword or keyword phrase that you’re thinking, I think is a really good benchmark to decide whether or not it’s got enough legs to create a whole new product around it. And then looking at the frequently purchased together and how do those things do well and separately, because I’m also a firm believer in the fact that just because something sells, something sells well in a single does not necessarily mean that it’s bundle worthy. And so with our framework, we have a way to kind of have idea validation and component validation to see that the things work together. And so, it’s just like a peanut butter and jelly, peanut butter does well together, jelly does well together, but tons and tons of people buy them together all the time. And so same thing with the t-shirts and shorts we were just talking about with the clothing bundle. So there’s definitely a step-by-step research process that we use. But search volume is probably my number one thing that I use on Helium 10, as well as looking for the competitors out there and seeing if someone else is selling this t-shirt, then I’m looking at that and I’m seeing what is being sold with that. And what’s frequently purchased together and then kind of combining all the keywords.

Bradley Sutton: Okay. And how do you purchase these products? I mean, are you purchasing these retail or are you trying to find distributors where you can get a literal wholesale account and buy in bulk? Or how do you do that?

Kristin Ostrander: Everything that we have is purchased wholesale. So I don’t do retail arbitrage anymore. As a matter of fact, I really feel it’s extremely risky and it’s not a long term strategy. And so, I look for wholesale vendors for everything that I purchased. And so we– I go to trade shows. I have lots of representatives I work with sales reps and things like that, that unlimited amount of catalogs. So if there’s something I want that I don’t have access to, then I source those in wholesale sources. I’ve actually even made a couple of smaller private label products that I put within my bundles as just some extra measure of– kind of competition proofing. Because if I put a combination of something together that anyone can get a hold of, then they could easily just wait for me to do my research, put my bundle up and then copy it. Well, I don’t– our system teaches that you don’t do that. You want to make sure your competition proofing your listings in your bundles so that you don’t do all this work. And then someone just kind of hijacks you. So, I have some other private label products that I added. I mixed vendor sometimes I’ll choose something from two or three different suppliers and put it together. Just making sure that the bundle meets a need, or solves a problem for the customer is my number one thing. The items need to be highly complementary use together. So we always the who, what, when, where, why, and how of the bundle before we even create it so that we know it’s rock solid before we list it.

Bradley Sutton: Interesting. Interesting. Okay. So then if somebody doesn’t want to go all in at first, usually when you go to wholesale companies, you get– you have MOQs sometimes. So if you want to test the market, you probably– even though it’s at a loss, you probably could just maybe buy some retail and just see what kind of– how fast it sells, or if there’s even any activity on it, to see if any page views. And then if it’s successful, then you go in and go ahead and buy 100 of each or something like that. Is that a good strategy, or do you have so much confidence when you start that you don’t even need to test?

Kristin Ostrander: I think testing’s important. And I think retail is a really good way to test bundles like that. But I also want to debunk the myth that wholesale is expensive or that a lot of wholesale companies have huge minimum orders. As a matter of fact, I just did a podcast episode of starting wholesale for $300 or less because so many people come to me and say, “Wholesale is going to be so expensive and there’s going to be all these charges.” And it’s just such a myth. There’s so many companies out there that have minimum order quantities of $300 or $200. Some of them actually have zero minimum orders. You can buy as little as one item or as many as 10,000. And so, I think there’s definitely some myths there about wholesale and how hard it is to start and stop. Now, of course, if you’re going to go to Hasbro or Mattel or Nike, and you want to try to get a– you’re trying to get orders with them. Well, clearly you’re going to have to– if you’re going to run with the big dogs, you better have deep pockets. So that’s why I suggest people start with more simplistic items, some– focus on the attributes of the items instead of brand names. And so I think that that’s really a myth that people do, but testing is very important. And I think retail is a good place to start if you’re nervous or you just want to give it a test run to see. I mean, yeah, you probably won’t make as much money as you would doing a wholesale, but there’s– that’s definitely a way to test the waters to see whether or not it’s going to serve the market the way you expected.

Bradley Sutton: Interesting. Interesting. Okay. Now what’s some success stories you can talk about either your own kind of numbers that you’ve done, or some of your students were– to kind of put into perspective what we’re talking about, cause some people think that the only money, big money is in private label. Yeah. There’s money in private label, but what are some stories of how much, what level people have gotten to just by following this kind of formula?

Kristin Ostrander: We are completely– in my business, we’re completely a hundred percent wholesale bundles. We occasionally do single unit items from our wholesale distributors that we have good relationships with some things, but our profit and bread and butter is in bundles. And we tend to make anywhere between five to $20 per bundle, depending on that. And that’s over and over again. We do 1.2 million in sales every single year. We carry about a hundred to 150 SKUs, depending on the season, I know we do some seasonal things. So that’s just an example from our store. But as far as some of my clients and some of their success stories, of course, you can go to the Amazon files and listen to a couple of success stories there. We’ve interviewed several people who have done wholesale bundles and have quit their full time jobs to do this. As a matter of fact, we have one coming up of a lady that used to do flea markets and she had a– she still has a regular nine to five cause she loves her nine to five, but instead of her high side hustle being a flea market, now she’s doing full time Amazon and doing bundles and she’s doing really well. So a lot of people like the fact that there’s not a lot of competition, so you don’t have to worry about constantly repricing things and worrying about how many sellers are selling this, and whether or not you’re going to be– got IP claims and different things like that because you’re booting people. You’re naturally creating something that it’s a competition proof if you will.

Bradley Sutton: Okay. Okay. Last question for you on this subject is you get a listing up and it’s pretty successful. How often do you have to deal with people who just want to jump on your listing? You can call them hijackers or just people trying to piggyback, you can call them that, but since it’s not a gated brand, theoretically speaking, anybody can kind of make a similar bundle. So is that something you guys had to deal with a lot, or most “hijackers” don’t really focus on these kinds of things because it’s so difficult to put these bundles together.

Kristin Ostrander: There’s two answers to that. The first answer is in the training, the way that we train bundles is to have our students learn bundles in a way that helps prevent hijackers. And what we do is we teach specific strategy that helps them either create something of their own, whether it’s a private label or something that they’re manufacturing themselves, creating something additionally that complements your bundle, that other people cannot repeat. So they won’t be able to hijack your listing because they don’t have the exact thing that you have. Here’s an example, one of my clients had created a grocery bundle and within that grocery bundle, they included a special recipe card that had different uses, kind of a how to, of how you make certain sauces with these items and how different things like that that was branded in their own. They laminate it and they put it within the product so that people not only know– it’s kind of either a how-to guide or a recipe card, or maybe you’re creating– I’ve had some people do party bundles where they create a special birthday button that basically you can go to anywhere like imprint that for imprint.com or place it or anything that you can do custom swag, if you will, and kind of make your own product that goes within bundle so that no one else can copy off of you because it’s a custom product.

Bradley Sutton: Love it, love it. All right. Now, before we get into your 30-second tip, we’re going to play the search volume game, something we do here, where I’m going to give you three words, keywords, and don’t have helium 10 open. I’m going to give you three search volumes and you’re going to try and match which one it is. Now, since you’ve been to– I usually try and think of something that relates to the person. So since you said, from when you were a little girl, you would sell chocolate stuff and now you’re doing bundles with some chocolates. I saw it. So I’m going to give you three chocolate-related keywords. All right. So, here they are. This is going to be in the order of the smallest number of letters to largest. So chocolate bars, chocolate gift box, and chocolate chip cookies. And now the three search volumes, from smallest to largest are, one of these keywords is searched for 11,000 times, one 20,000 times, and another 33,000 times. So again, chocolate bars, chocolate gift box and chocolate chip cookies. Which word goes to which search volume?

Kristin Ostrander: Okay. So I think chocolate chip cookies would probably be the 33,000. Gift box, I think would be next at 20,000 and chocolate bars at 11K.

Bradley Sutton: All right. You got one right. The chocolate chip cookies, definitely 33,000. But yeah, surprisingly enough, the chocolate bars is 21,000. That’s just interesting in itself. I keep hearing these rumors that Amazon is going to stop allowing melt-able stuff inside their warehouses, but I’ve never seen that actually happen, but yeah, there’s actually 21,000 people estimated, searching for chocolate bars, but chocolate gift box by itself. Something I never even thought about still has a hundreds of people searching that day, 11,000. So, interesting.

Kristin Ostrander: That was my bundle hopeful that that was going to be a little bit higher than that.

Bradley Sutton: There we go. Yeah, there we go. There we go. There we go. Well, now that everybody hears this episode, maybe like three or four weeks, that search volume is going to be 15,000 or more for chocolate gift box. Alright. Now we come to the part of the show. We called that TST, or the TST, 30-second tip. You’ve been given strategies and tips throughout this whole episode, but what is something that you haven’t said yet, but maybe that you could say in 30 seconds or less, that’s highly actionable and valuable for our listeners. It can be about wholesale bundling or anything else.

Kristin Ostrander: Be consistent and be persistent. The squeaky wheel gets the grease. If you open a wholesale account or you think that wholesale accounts aren’t going to sell to Amazon sellers, or you don’t have enough money, or you think that you’re putting all these barriers in your brain, just take action. Take action consistently, and be persistent. If you continue to put your name out there and get wholesale accounts, and ask the questions, and be persistent, you will get the results that you desire.

Bradley Sutton: Love it, love it. Now, how can people find more information about how to do wholesale bundles? How can they find your podcast, et cetera, et cetera.

Kristin Ostrander: Our podcast is called the Amazon files. We are everywhere. We’re on Spotify, we’re on Google play, Stitcher, iTunes, of course all the places. And then if you want to learn more about wholesale bundling, you can go to mommyincome.com/system. That’s our wholesale bundle system. We also have an intro guide to a wholesale bundles, if you go to mommyincome.com and click the bundle roadmap. It will kind of give you a roadmap to your first bundle of some of the first things that you need to do to get started in bundling.

Bradley Sutton: So cool. So cool. Well, Kristin, thank you so much for joining us on the show today and talking about something that– I don’t know, I think it’s been about 160 episodes. We’ve never had somebody talk about this, so it’s always great to learn new things, and love to touch bases with you maybe next year and see how you’re doing.

Kristin Ostrander: Awesome. Thanks so much for having me.

Bradley Sutton: All right. We’ll see you later.

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