Yo, what’s up!
Ok, so I’m a big believer in using the very best tools to run my online businesses.
As a 6 figure Amazon FBA seller, I’ve tried out dozens of tools over the years, some good, some not so good.
I’ve also done this in my local lead generation business which is now making me a cool $30K a month, and for me it’s the tools in both of my businesses that have made all the difference.
In this article I’m gonna dive into 2 of the biggest tools on the market, when it comes to the Amazon FBA game.
These are Jungle Scout and Viral Launch.
I’m gonna compare them against each other, and let you know how they stack up when it comes to helping you build an Amazon FBA business.
But here’s where this article really gets interesting...
Once I’m done comparing the tools, I’m gonna pull back the curtain on some of the dirty secrets about Amazon FBA, that only a 6 figure seller like me would know.
I’ll give you my thoughts on the business model, and let you know if you should even be thinking about starting your own Amazon business!
These are the kinds of secrets you will never hear from people selling Amazon courses or tools...so you’re gonna want to make sure you take note!
Here’s what we’re gonna cover...
Ok, let’s go…
1. JUNGLE SCOUT: What is Jungle Scout?
If you’ve done any digging into Amazon FBA tools, then there’s no doubt you’ve probably come across the ever popular Jungle Scout.
Jungle Scout claims to take the guesswork out of picking products to sell on Amazon, and makes the entire process super simple from start to finish.
It’s easy to think of Jungle Scout as a product research tool (which it is), but it’s a lot more in depth than that.
It boasts a database of over 75 million products, which allows for product tracking, supplier sourcing and some killer keyword research functionality.
It also comes as both an online web tool and a Chrome extension, which means there are no software files to download and update.
On top of all that, JS also packs in an impressive Inventory Manager module.
This hooks up to your stock in real time and guides you around planning your inventory and next orders.
So yea, Jungle Scout is way more than just your basic research tool.
2. VIRAL LAUNCH: What is Viral Launch?
Viral Launch has been around for a few years and has also made a pretty big splash in the Amazon FBA space.
Just like Jungle Scout, it’s way more than just a product research tool.
It’s suite allows sellers to dominate when it comes to keyword management, competitor analysis, split testing, building lists, carrying out listing optimization and of course finding those killer products.
3. SHARED FEATURES: That Both Tools Have
Both tools boast a cool Chrome extension which makes searching for products quick and simple.
For most part they almost look identical and offer killer data such as estimated sales volume (number of units a month), competitor inventory levels, profitability, PPC costs and the ability to track keywords and products over a period of time.
For some users this is all they need.
I know when I first got started with the Jungle Scout tool, I used the extension exclusively and it did a perfect job of helping me get my product launched.
4. JUNGLE SCOUT FEATURES: That Viral Launch Doesn’t Have
While the tools are pretty similar in many ways, they also have a few big differences.
These differences might be the factors that help you decide which tool is best for your Amazon FBA business.
The biggest features that Jungle Scout will help you with, which Viral Launch won’t, are:
Finding a Supplier:
With Jungle Scout’s Supplier Database feature, you’ll be able to browse through thousands of vetted suppliers that you know are legit.
I know when I was starting my Amazon business, one of the scariest parts was sending $15K to a supplier I’d never met (yikes!).
After all, how did I know I was ever going to get anything back for my money, right?
The good news is that the Jungle Scout Database Supplier feature removes a lot of the gamble when it comes to picking a supplier.
You’ll get insight into how many customers the supplier has, how many shipments they have fulfilled, and all sorts of other useful information that will help you make your choice.
Launch Your Product:
Another cool feature from the team at Jungle Scout is that they have a module that will assist you with getting your product launched and flying out the gate.
Jungle Scout Launch gives you the ability to access markets and promote your new product at discounted prices.
This of course helps you drive sales velocity which is the key to ranking well on Amazon, especially when your product is new.
Manage Your Inventory:
Take it from me when I tell you that one of the biggest challenges to selling on Amazon is getting your inventory levels correct.
Even after doing multiple 6 figures, and selling on the platform for over 5 years, I still struggle with this, and even run out of stock from time to time due to unpredictable sales spikes.
The good news is that Jungle Scout’s Inventory Manager uses a complex algorithm to alert and advise you as to when you need to purchase new inventory.
I’m always a fan of any tool that’s going to help me keep making money...which of course I can’t do if I run out of stock, so I thought this was a killer feature!
5. VIRAL LAUNCH FEATURES: That Jungle Scout Doesn’t Have
Viral Launch has a few cool tricks up its sleeve, which the Jungle Scout team don’t offer.
While the Kinetic PPC tool is pretty straightforward, it’s still awesome as it allows you to manage all of your PPC campaigns, right from within the Viral Launch tool.
This means you can pause campaigns, adjust your bids, and carry out general analysis on how your adverts are performing...pretty sweet feature really.
The Ability to Split Test:
Your listing conversion can really make or break your success on Amazon, which is why the Listing Dojo tool is an awesome feature that can help you get the best converting listing possible.
The tool allows you to configure up to 7 variations of image, description, title and price.
As it cycles through the different configurations and serves them up to Amazon customers, it will then track the clicks, conversions, sessions, and sales each get, to eventually tell you what the best title, price, image and description will be for your listing.
This feature runs an algorithm against products and then creates a summary based on their potential sales.
It takes sales trends and other complex factors into consideration and give you some truly valuable insight into almost any market within Amazon.
Again, I wish I’d had a tool like this when I first started...it would have saved me a ton of wasted time and money.
This is super powerful and can really set you apart from the competition.
6. USER EXPERIENCE: Which Tool is the Most Intuitive?
Look, the fact that we're even talking about both of these tools means that they are both industry leaders.
I can tell you that they wouldn't have achieved this status if their tools weren't intuitive and simple enough to use.
So when it comes to user experience, both Jungle Scout and Viral Launch stack up pretty well.
That said, I preferred the Jungle Scout layout and interface.
It's simple, clean and just has an awesome, warm brand feel to it (heck, maybe it's the orange glow).
Viral Launch could appear a little overwhelming to new users, purely because of the sheer volume of information available to you when you first log in.
Don't get me wrong, information is good. It's why we buy these tools after all, right?
But a new seller that is still finding their feet could definitely suffer from paralysis by analysis when using the Viral Launch tool for the first time.
7. PRODUCT CREATORS: Do They Actually Sell on Amazon Themselves?
When I’m looking at an Amazon course or tool, I always pay careful attention to the product creators.
I’m interested to know if they actually sell on Amazon themselves...or are they just making money telling other people how to.
In the case of Jungle Scout, the tool was created by 8 figure Amazon seller Greg Mercer.
Greg saw a need within his own business, and set out to build a tool that would solve some of the biggest problems he was facing on a day to day basis as a seller himself.
The result was Jungle Scout.
I’ll be honest, I really dig Greg’s vibe.
He’s a humble, honest, down to earth guy that’s turned his passion into a million dollar business.
By solving problems for millions of Amazon sellers, he’s managed to build an awesome company, and at the end of the day, that’s what being an entrepreneur is all about.
In the case of Viral Launch, it was founded by Casey Gauss who didn’t have an Amazon selling background, but he did have a passion for building cool things… the result in this case was Viral Launch.
He started the company at the tender age of 21, and it turned into an 8 figure monster that helps 1,000s of Amazon sellers every single day.
From super humble beginnings where he was coding with socks on his hands because he didn't even have money to heat his apartment, he’s managed to build a team of over 30 employees that are all focused around a core mission of helping Amazon sellers run their business.
8. PRICING: How Much Does Jungle Scout Cost?
Jungle Scout do really well to keep their pricing structure plain and simple to understand.
I’d even argue a 4 year old could understand it, which definitely passes my simplicity test.
When you sign up, you get a 14 day risk free period in which you’re able to request a full refund.
From there, their price options are laid out in a clean and clear manner.
Like most products, you’ll get more bang for your buck if you pay upfront for a year.
When you do this, you’ll be able to pick up the Chrome browser extension for $29 a month, the suite option for $49 a month (this gives you the basic features plus a bit more), and the Professional package for $84 a month (this is perfect for an agency setup with multiple users).
9. PRICING: How Much Does Viral Launch Cost?
As with the Jungle Scout tool, Viral Launch comes with a few different price tiers, each of which offer additional benefits and features. In this case there are 4 different price tiers.
You’re also gonna get way more value if you are able to pay for a year upfront.
In this case, it works out to 2 months of free access, given the cost difference between paying annually or monthly.
First up, is the Beginner package, which is $58 a month and perfect for the newbie seller that’s just dipping their toe into the Amazon pool.
You’ll get basic features which will allow you to get your business firing, such as Product Research and the ability to analyze competitor listings.
Next up is the Pro plan, which drops at $83 a month. You’ll get everything you get with the beginner plan, plus keyword (you can also track up to 2K keywords) research and listing checks / creation.
The Brand Builder package will set you back $166 a month.
This gives you all of the above mentioned features, plus the option to do a deep dive on up to 100 other listings, as well as track up to 5K keywords.
This is for the more serious players out there, who are probably already making decent money on Amazon.
Lastly, the premier Viral Launch package is called Kinetic and costs $249 a month.
This will give you access to everything on offer in the Viral Launch product, and is for the big dogs!
10. FEEDBACK AND REVIEWS: What do Buyers Say?
It’s pretty hard to look past the fact that Jungle Scout dominates the Trust Pilot review scene, with almost 2,000 reviews and a rating of 4.5
For me this shows that they have a loyal army of fans, that clearly love the product they are delivering.
It also takes time and effort to leave a review, so the fact that they've managed to get almost 2,000 people to do so, tells us a bit about how popular they are, and how well they treat their customers.
In comparison, Viral Launch kinda limps in with just shy of 160 reviews, which a mediocre average of only 3.6.
Compared to Jungle Scout, they really struggle to stack up, and this definitely gives us some insight into the tools from a customer viewpoint.
11. PROS AND CONS: Jungle Scout:
Like any tools, Jungle Scout comes with a few different Pros and Cons, when you stack it up against the Viral Launch tool.
Jungle Scout Pros and Cons
Jungle Scout Pros:
Price: It’s more affordable than Viral Launch, which definitely helps when you’re just getting started in the FBA game.
With all the outgoings of stock, courses and all the other tools you need, it helps if you can save a few pennies.
It’s also cool that the tool comes with a 14 day money back guarantee, once again calming the newbie nerves about parting with cash they may not have.
Keyword Tool: I thought the keyword research tool was pretty dope too, and once you get it dialed in it’s gonna really help you find your next big ticket product.
Layout: Overall the Jungle Scout layout is super clean and simple to use. I'm all about intuitive software, and the last thing I want to do is have to spend hours watching training videos just to understand how to get started.
Customer Support: The Jungle Scout team are awesome, and their customer support is first class.
If you're having problems, they've got you covered.
Jungle Scout Cons:
Chrome Extension: For some unknown reason, which I can't really wrap my head around, the chrome extension is sold (and charged for) separately.
I have no idea why this is and it appears to be a common gripe point among JS users.
Not Launch Focused: As awesome as the tool is, it's more geared for product research than actual launches.
12. PROS AND CONS: Viral Launch
Like the Jungle Scout tool, Viral Launch has good and bad features...
Viral Launch Pros and Cons
Viral Launch Pros:
Chrome Extension: The plugin is included in the suite and pricing, which makes a lot more sense to me.
14 Day Free Trial: Like Jungle Scout, Viral Launch offers a free 14 day trial. This takes away any risk you might be feeling as a potential customer, and allows you to give the tool a good test before committing to paying for it.
Multiple Amazon Markets: Up to 10 marketplaces are covered in the VL tool, making it a fully Global tool, for sellers all over the world.
Training Videos: The tool comes packed with awesome training content, which makes it simple to learn and master.
Viral Launch Cons:
Costs: The tool costs quite a bit more than Jungle Scout, and if you're just getting started this could be a big deciding factor if you don't have money to burn.
Layout: While the tool has a solid user interface, it simply isn't as well laid out as Jungle Scout, and isn't as intuitive in my opinion.
Information Overload: While the training content is solid, you may still find that there is so much going on when you first dig into the tool, that you're gonna be slightly overwhelmed.
I guess it's a good problem to have, but just remember that the training will explain it all to you if you're feeling a little lost and stuck as to what to do next!
13. CONCLUSION: Which Tool Should You Be Using?
When it comes to picking between Jungle Scout and Viral Launch, I gotta say, there’s not too much in it.
At the end of the day you're gonna need to run the numbers on your business and decide what functionality you need help with most.
Here's what Jungle Scout will do for you:
- Help you find a supplier
- Help you launch a Product
- Help you with tracking sales and profits
- Help you manage your inventory
- Offers various alerts to make you more proactive.
In turn, here's what Viral Launch will do for you:
- Help you with your PPC campaigns.
- Help you perform a deep dive into market insights.
- Helps you with split testing.
If I had to pick one, I’d have to go with Jungle Scout, simply because I just dig the vibe they give off and it suits the needs of my business best.
Their tool is clean and simple to use, will definitely help you sift through the weeds and Amazon stumbling blocks, and over all just kicks ass.
That said, Viral Launch is pretty solid too, and can definitely get you to where you want to go (if you have the cash to spend).
But here’s my real question for you…
Are you sure you actually want to start an Amazon FBA business?
I know, it’s a weird question from a guy that’s done 6 figures selling on Amazon and has just done a review on 2 Amazon tools, but here me out...
AMAZON'S DIRTY SECRET
14. TRUTH BOMB: What No One Tells You About Selling on Amazon
I started off this article by telling you I'm a 6 figure Amazon seller, right? So I think it's fair to say I know a thing or two about selling on their platform!
After 5 years of being in the Amazon FBA game, here's what I've learnt that no one else will tell you...
Selling on Amazon is hard! I mean real hard.
So first up, it's getting super competitive these days.
I mean there are literally hundreds of new sellers pouring in every single day, all trying to get their slice of the Amazon pie.
This means less pie for you, as every day passes.
It's also risky.
You're gonna need anywhere between $10K - $15K to get started, and you don't even know if anyone is gonna buy your product?
Talk about a rough start to your business!
On top of that, the profit margins are slim (20% - 25%) and the longer I sell on Amazon the more I am realizing that I have zero control over my business.
I am just a pawn in Amazon's game, and they can remove me any time they like.
15. I'VE FOUND A BETTER WAY: My #1 Business Model
I'll be honest.
I got tired of having a sinking feeling in my stomach every time I thought of my Amazon business.
With all the risk, uncertainty and general lack of control, I could never relax and feel like I was financially free.
So I went out of my way to find a better business model...one that I could rely on, and actually build a proper business on.
Introducing local lead generation...probably one of the best business models on the planet in my opinion.
With local lead gen, you're building and ranking little service based websites in Google (easy to do), and then once they generate leads you send them to a local business owner, and take a sliver to deliver.
Here's how it works...
Let's say you build a little carpet cleaning website for your local area. You rank the site #1 in Google, and then drop a call tracking phone number (which you own) on there.
People start calling the number and you redirect it to a local carpet cleaning business in the area that's looking for more business.
You track the calls and then either charge them 10% of any calls they close, or a flat fee per lead (say $15), or even a fixed monthly fee for all the leads you send them (say $750).
...are you seeing the power of this?
Imagine you have 50 of these little websites each earning you $750 a month?
Here's why I now prefer local lead generation to Amazon FBA...
Local Lead Gen Always Wins...
Local Lead Gen
MARKET SATURATION & COMPETITION
You're going head to head with literally millions of sellers covering over 6000 different product niches. Breaking into an established niche is next to impossible - and finding untapped niches are becoming increasingly rare.
Start up costs require roughly $5000 in initial inventory, $10,000 in advertising, and $3000 in listing optimization, packaging, and branding. All in all, if you want to have a chance at success, you'll need to spend roughly $15,000 to $20,000 just as an initial investment.
Nearly all successful products are copied and resold by either Amazon or Chinese manufacturers who then undercut their competition at margins that only billion dollar companies can afford. Every time you see an Amazon Basics or Essentials product at the top ranked listing, it's likely that dozens of independent sellers went out of business.
The key to long term wealth is in building and owning valuable assets, but with Amazon FBA, you own nothing. You're an enslaved middleman to Amazon, who care only about market domination and making a profit. Remember, you're there to make them money - and your use of Amazon is a privilege they grant you; a privilege they can revoke at any time.
Between identifying products and suppliers, passing quality assurance, securing inventory, and then product ranking, you're looking at over a year before you even have a chance at seeing a net positive income.
Profit margins are extremely low, meaning the only real way to make money is through mass ordering. Successful Amazon sellers often make less than 10% profit off of their sales.
Amazon's terms of service are fickle and ever changing. Bans are frequent and can spell disaster for FBA startups and established businesses alike.
Local Lead Generation
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