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As most of our readers already know, Mrs. Amazopia and I run an FBA (Fulfillment By Amazon) business. We are now in the lull between storms, and we have some time to come up for air, so I have some free time to write…

FBA is a business which requires a lot of work, substantial up-front investment — and some risk. You have to make a “best guess” at what to procure, based on several factors such as rank & price, and you still can’t reliably tell what will sell well. For instance, we had the opportunity to get a bunch of “Duck Dynasty” merchandise a few weeks back. We decided against getting all we could, based partly on our uncertainty of future popularity. Of course, there were other reasons, which Mrs. Amazopia explains in her book on the subject. What we did buy, we managed to get listed only a couple of days before the Phil Robertson brouhaha. Without taking sides in that dust-up, we saw all of our Duck Dynasty merchandise fly off the shelves within a few hours of the news that A&E had fired the “Duck Commander,” leaving some doubt as to the future of the popular series. We are completely sold out of all Duck Dynasty-related items, and we can’t get any more from the supplier because they are sold out, too. Now we regret not taking on more risk by buying all that we could get. Hindsight is 20/20.

A quick check of Amazon shows that most (not all) Duck Dynasty physical merchandise is in short supply, and prices have risen. So if you are looking for legacy Duck Dynasty stuff, you may already be too late.

Of course, the shortage doesn’t apply to Kindle books.

In my last post about the Amazon drones, I made a somewhat lame attempt at humor. Mrs. Amazopia called my attention to this article, which was a bit more successful at being funny. At least I think so.

Obviously, the best time to get Christmas merchandise is during the weeks immediately after Christmas. But there is another opportunity for getting bargain-basement prices on a broader range of merchandise coming up in the last few weeks in January and first part of February. You see, February 15th is one of the two times per year that Amazon applies a “long-term storage” fee to FBA sellers. Some FBA sellers get the long-term storage fee notice from Amazon, which will arrive in mid-January — and panic. You will see lots of FBA listings drop to the supplier cost, or even below, as FBA sellers try to flush out their inventories before February 15th. A lot of them end up losing more doing that than they would have by just paying the fee. So, if you didn’t get what you really wanted for Christmas — or you are just looking for bargains, start watching Amazon for your desired items starting around the 3rd week of January.

To get even more bang for your buck, sign up for Amazon Prime. Amazon Prime is good for a lot of other things besides free shipping! For instance, you get around the “minimum purchase” rules, and can get unlimited streaming videos and TV shows. Mrs. Amazopia and I have been Prime members for a long time, and it has saved us a *lot* of money.