Have you ever browsed the range of products available on Amazon Japan?
If you have, then you’re perhaps familiar with the fact that diving into the digital aisles of Amazon Japan feels like unearthing a treasure trove of unique finds – many of which remain elusive in other corners of the globe.
The allure of Amazon.co.jp amazes international shoppers with promises of rare gems. But how does one navigate the vast seas of international shipping and the intricacies of Amazon’s Japanese marketplace?
Let’s unravel those mysteries! Below, you’ll find a comprehensive guide to making the most of your Amazon Japan shopping experience. We’ll also discuss how you can make the most out of the marketplace as a seller.
Amazon Japan | A Brief Overview
One in every four Japanese consumers shop online two to three times a month, as of June 2023 data. Some of the most popular categories for on
The study also reveals the most popular categories for online purchases in Japan include clothing, books, movies, music, and games. Some other popular categories are food and beverage; cosmetics and body care; and drugstore and health.
These numbers show the significance of market opportunities in Japan. But how does Amazon Japan fit into the picture?
As per 2022 statistics, Japan is the fourth largest Amazon marketplace next to the United States, Germany, and the United Kingdom. Having earned $24.4 billion in sales that year, Amazon Japan is among Asia’s fastest-growing marketplaces.
Amazon.co.jp has distinguished itself by offering a blend of traditional and contemporary products, making it an e-commerce powerhouse in its own right.
The Allure of Exclusive Products on Amazon Japan
Amazon Japan offers unique items that resonate with the heart and soul of Japanese culture. These exclusive products, often not found on other Amazon platforms, have become a magnet for international shoppers.
Some of the items that gained international attention from Amazon.co.jp include:
- Matcha chocolates and treats
- Anime and Manga merchandise
- Furoshiki wrapping cloths
- Japanese stationery
- Beauty gadgets
- Traditional crafts
Navigating Amazon Japan in English
For many international shoppers, the thought of navigating a website in a foreign language can be daunting.
Fortunately, Amazon Japan has seamlessly bridged this language barrier with its tools that allow global customers to explore and shop in English with the same ease as native Japanese speakers.
This feature is not just a simple translation tool. It’s a thoughtful integration that considers the nuances and preferences of English-speaking customers, ensuring they have a smooth shopping experience.
On the upper right part of Amazon.co.jp, you’ll find a flag with a dropdown box. Here, you can use the Amazon Japan English language toggle. You can also change the currency from Japanese Yen to your preferred currency.
Can I use my US Amazon account in Japan?
You can’t use your US Amazon account directly on Amazon Japan; the Japanese version requires a separate account. This means that if you wish to shop on an Amazon Japan store, you’ll need to create a new account specific to that marketplace.
While the two accounts are distinct, the process of setting up an account on Amazon Japan is straightforward. Once set up, you can order products to be shipped internationally, provided the items and destination country are eligible for Amazon Global shipping.
International Shipping from Amazon Japan
Amzon does offer international shipping under AmazonGlobal. At the point of checkout, the marketplace handles the import fee deposit and customs clearances.
You can see a list of destinations Amazon Global Japan ships to at Amazon.co.jp under the AmazonGlobal section.
To explore products available for Amazon International shipping, tick the International Shipping Eligible checkbox within the search results or category page.
Take note, however, that it’s crucial to adhere to the customs rules of the target country. Non-compliance can lead to order cancellation and possible account suspension.
Shipping Costs for Global Customers
As in any other marketplace, shipping expenses in Amazon Japan are influenced by several factors:
- Destination. Countries closer to Japan, like South Korea or Taiwan, will generally have lower shipping fees than countries further away, such as Brazil or Canada.
- Regional Variations. Even within a country, shipping costs can vary. For instance, shipping to a major city might be cheaper than a remote area due to better logistics infrastructure.
- Trade Agreements. Countries with trade agreements with Japan might enjoy reduced shipping rates due to lowered customs duties or streamlined shipping processes.
- Package Specifications. The weight of the package is a primary determinant of shipping costs. Lightweight items like clothing or small electronics will be cheaper to ship than heavy items like books or home appliances. Apart from weight, the size or volume of the package also plays a role. Even if an item is lightweight, if it’s bulky, it might push the package into a higher shipping bracket.
Amazon has a global shipping rates list where you can find the shipping cost according to destination. You can also compare fees between Priority Shipping, Expedited Shipping, or Standard Shipping.
Highlighting Potential Customs Duties and Taxes
Shipments abroad might be subjected to customs duties and taxes as mandated by the recipient country. These charges aren’t incorporated in the Amazon Japan product price or shipping fee. Buyers must recognize these potential fees and cover them upon product delivery.
Free Delivery on First Order
Amazon Japan offers free delivery on your first order, making your shopping experience even sweeter. Here are the steps to avail of the initial order offer:
- On your Amazon Japan account, add the items to your basket. Look for items labeled Fulfilled by Amazon or Ships from and sold by Amazon.co.jp on the product details.
- Select the “Free delivery on first order” option when checking out.
- The delivery cost will be automatically removed from your total order value.
Note that this free delivery offer doesn’t apply to seller-fulfilled items. To be safe, always look for the “Fulfilled by Amazon” or “Ships from and sold by Amazon.co.jp” label on the product page.
In addition, the offer is only applicable to Amazon Japan account owners who have never placed an order before. This condition holds regardless of whether the customer bought an item from a third-party seller where the offer doesn’t apply.
Diving into the World of Cross-Marketplace Reselling
Amazon presents a golden opportunity to bridge the gap between markets. Here are a few tips for using Amazon Japan to source products to sell in another marketplace.
Research and Identify Unique Products
Begin by researching products exclusive to Amazon Japan or items with significant demand in other countries but not readily available. These could include crafts, electronics, beauty products, or limited-edition releases.
Understand Import and Export Regulations
Before purchasing, be aware of the import regulations of Japan and the export regulations of the country where you plan to resell. Some products might have restrictions or require special documentation.
Calculate Costs Carefully
Factor in the product cost, shipping fees, customs duties, taxes, and other associated costs. This will help you determine the selling price when listing the product on another Amazon marketplace.
Provide Excellent Customer Service
Since you’re selling unique items, buyers might have more questions. Ensure you provide prompt and helpful responses. Also, consider offering expedited shipping options or special packaging to enhance the customer experience.
Consider Using Amazon’s Global Selling Program
Amazon Global Selling can simplify the process of listing and selling on multiple marketplaces. It provides tools and solutions to help sellers expand their global footprint.
The Bottom Line
For international shoppers, Amazon Japan offers a seamless experience, from language translation tools to international shipping options.
Sellers can also tap into the vast potential of cross-border eCommerce, leveraging the exclusivity of Japanese products to cater to a broader audience.
However, as with any international venture, it’s essential to be well-informed. Understanding the nuances of shipping costs, customs duties, and the intricacies of Amazon Japan will ensure a smooth and profitable experience.
Esteban Muñoz is a content writer at AMZ Advisers, with several years’ experience in digital marketing and e-commerce. Esteban and the AMZ Advisers team have been able to achieve incredible growth on Amazon for their clients by optimizing and managing their accounts, and creating in-depth content marketing strategies.
Carla Bauto Deña is a journalist and content writer producing stories for traditional and digital media. She believes in empowering small businesses with the help of innovative solutions, such as e-commerce, digital marketing, and data analytics.