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5 Reasons NOT to sell on Amazon Japan [with 5 Counter-Arguments]


As discussed in the article ‘Start Selling on Amazon Japan Today [2 easy steps]’ setting up an Amazon Seller account and listing a product is pretty much the same as on any other Amazon marketplace. So this leads on to the question…

Why have you not listed your products on Amazon Japan?

Reasons NOT to sell on Amazon Japan:

REASON #1: Everything will be in Japanese so I will not be able to understand what to do.
REALITY: You get English versions of the Amazon Japan Seller Central. So not worries there.

REASON #2: There are probably complicated tax laws that are impossible to understand.
REALITY: Amazon automatically takes the necessary fees when they take payments from customers and then pay it out to you. So you do not need to worry about this side of things. If you post orders yourself to customers in Japan from countries outside of Japan (i.e. where you live) then again there is nothing to worry about as long as the value of the shipment is less than 10,000 Japanese Yen (about £70).

If the shipment is worth more than £70 then the recipient will be contacted by customs and asked to pay a customs fee.

If you are shipping products in bulk to Japan so that you can store them in Amazon Japan warehouses then there are two unavoidable taxes. There is a flat rate 8% consumption tax that you pay on the value of your goods, and there is an import duty. This duty depends on your product type and can be between 3% and 20%. Your shipping company can take care of this for you so just ask them to do this and it is a simple process.

One big positive (if taxes can ever be viewed as a positive) is that everyone pays these taxes, which makes it a level playing field. Compare this to the UK for example where some companies may be VAT registered and pay an extra 20% on sales, while others are not VAT registered and thus have potentially higher profit margins.

REASON #3: The listings need to be in Japanese and I don’t speak Japanese.
REALITY: Yes, they do need to be in Japanese. However, you can start with Google Translate to create a quick listing, and then you can move to a professional translation service later once you are up and running. However, you will need to translate individual words rather than full sentences because the way sentences are constructed can be complex.

REASON #4: You will need a Japanese bank account and it will be a hassle getting money paid into your bank account.
REALITY: This used to be the case back in 2015, however you can now use your normal bank account within Amazon Japan Seller Central and all payments are automatically converted into your currency and paid directly into your account. Easy!

REASON #5: If I don’t sell anything I will be wasting money on Amazon Japan fees.
REALITY: You can choose to sell as an Individual and there are no monthly fees. You literally only pay when you make a sale. The Professional account has a 5880 Yen (approx. £40) monthly fee but you don’t need this if you are willing to post your orders yourself. Read about how to do Fulfillment by Merchant here.

SUMMARY – Why not to sell on Amazon Japan

So, as you can see there is nothing too difficult here. You should set up an Amazon Japan Sellers account today and list your products. Create an Individual account and choose Fulfillment by Merchant in the first instance so that you have no fees, but if you start making a few sales per month you can update your settings so that you can offer next day delivery and have lower selling fees per order.

Any more concerns? Drop me a message or better still Join Our Facebook Group and post on there.

Neil Curtis


  1. Amazon Japan Listing Creation & Optimizations
  2. Amazon Japan Advertising

Our goal is to help brands launch and grow sales on Amazon Japan.


We want to make our pricing as clear and simple as possible, which is why we have fixed fees rather than complex commission based pricing or contact us for a quote links.



$449 per product type + $30 for any additional variation



$199 per video



From just $799/month or 5% of revenue





$449 per product type (Parent ASIN) + $30 for any additional variation (Child ASIN)


10 x product types with each product type having 3 colour variations.

  • 30 products in total, 20 of which are classed as Child variations and 10 are classed as Parents
  • (10 x $449) + (20 x $30) = $5090

Having a well written and keyword rich product listing is essential because:

  1. Shoppers need to be able to find your product on Amazon Japan.
  2. When they do find you product they then need to have confidence so they buy.
Perfect Amazon Japan Product Listing

See a finished result for one of our clients on Amazon Japan -

This was quite a complex project with a lot of size and type child variations. But the effort was definitely worth it.

The Rising Sun Commerce Amazon Japan Product Listing Process:


We gather all the information needed to fully understand your product and brand. We need to understand your products' features and benefits in fine detail so that we can hone the copy of your listing. We can use your English Amazon listings as a guide, however Amazon Japan is VERY strict in the wording you can use and often your English listings would be rejected instantly.


We conduct detailed keyword research using specialist software such as Helium10’s Cerebro tool to analyze the keywords used by your main competitors on Amazon Japan. We also use Amazon’s own Brand Analytics data to ensure we pull out all of the most important keywords. Finally, we manually read over your competitors listings to pick out common keywords.


Our optimally written product listings are professionally translated by one of Rising Sun Commerce’s experienced native Japanese listing editors who carefully integrate the keywords from the extensive keyword research process as they translate your product listings - check out Shiori’s short video where she discusses a client's listing here.


We annotate any text in your images into Japanese, because everyone knows that the images are one of the most important aspects of your Amazon Product Detail Page.


We construct an upload (AKA flat) file and upload your listings to Amazon Japan. We complete as many fields as possible in the flat file to help with Amazon indexing and categorisation. We apply any keywords that are not integrated into the product listing into the Generic Search Terms (AKA back end search terms). Uploading the flat files to your Amazon Japan account can sometimes be a smooth process, but due to Japan’s quirks and glitches this can often be a bumpy process. We guarantee that your product listings will be uploaded to Amazon Japan, even if it takes multiple Seller Support cases and multiple revisions to remove and replace text or images to satisfy the Amazon Japan gods.


We upload your Japanese specific images to Amazon Japan. This can be a complex process and often requires multiple attempts and Seller Support cases. It also requires Brand Registry access so there is additional admin required.


Any appropriate listing videos will be annotated and/ or a voice over will be applied at no extra cost. The videos will be uploaded to your listings.


Using your English A+ content as a guide we construct and upload A+ content for your product listings. Like the Product Detail Pages this can often be a tough process because Amazon Japan are irrationally picky about the words you can use. We have a database of banned words and phrases, but we are still surprised by Amazon when they pick up on a new term. Again, we guarantee your A+ content will be uploaded to Amazon Japan, no matter how long it takes.


Finally, once the listing has been on Amazon Japan for a few days we do Keyword Index Checks to make sure the listings are correctly indexed.

Watch the video below of Shiori (one of our expert editors) discussing her translations for a clients product.

The video below show how we make sure your products are fully indexed on Amazon Japan.


Using one of our trusted native Japanese creators we can commission custom unboxing videos for your products.

We ensure the creators discuss the main benefits and features of your product.

Alternatively, if you have a good promotional video in English, we can replace the English voice with a professional standard Japanese voice.

Having a video on your Amazon Japan product listing is a major benefit and helps show the shopper exactly what they will get and reinforces the main product selling points.

$199 per video


Unboxing video examples

Voice-over video example

Complete Guide and Seller Analysis Report for Amazon Japan

Get the FREE seller guide to Amazon Japan

We wrote this guide to help you better understand selling on Amazon Japan.  With this information, you can make an informed, intelligent decision as to whether selling on Amazon Japan might be a good fit for you too.

Your guide is on it's way to you!