Amazon FBA Product Research Strategy Using Xray and Black Box tools

December 5, 2022

With millions of products being launched on Amazon every day, it can get very difficult to choose the right category and a product that has demand, is unique, and solves certain problems customers have.

Amazon FBA product research can easily become not only complicated but time-consuming as well. Even using the right tools for it might not give you the results you need as with the wrong metrics, you won’t have the right data to create an analysis that will lead you to the most crucial decision of your Amazon business – to decide on your first winning product.

That’s why we decided to show how to use Helium 10 tools – Xray and Black Box – in the right way so you know exactly what metrics to look at when searching for a profitable product.

What are Xray and Black Box by Helium 10?

First, let’s quickly overview both of the tools and what each of them does.

In a nutshell, both Black Box and Xray are product research tools, however, there are differences between the metrics they provide.

Black Box is a product finder tool that helps you save tons of time in your product-hunting journey. This tool lets you scan the entire Amazon marketplace and with a few filters applied, you will get the search results in a matter of seconds. It is also great when you only have a preferred category to sell but don’t know what specific product to choose.

On the other hand, Xray is a Google Chrome extension that gives you product data directly on Amazon. With the extension, you can instantly get an overview of the most important metrics of each product – number of reviews, estimated sales, number of competitors and even FBA fees.

In addition, Xray gives you data about product demand and allows you to look for product suppliers with Alibaba integration.

Amazon FBA product research process explained

But what if you are just starting out, and don’t know where to begin with product research? What criteria are enough to capture the niche and low-competition products that you want to sell?

Before starting out with product research you must first know your target market. Once you understand your target market, you can identify the product features they want and shape your offering to those needs. Try to think of the problems your ideal customer faces. How does your product answer those problems?

So, when you’re able to define your target market, you can now start looking for those items in the best sellers list on Amazon, Etsy, and other major supplier sites like Alibaba or AliExpress.

To make things simpler for you, it is best to direct all focus and attention to improving a product that will ultimately differentiate from the competition.

So let’s look at the criteria we chose for selecting a potential winning product:

  • Single Item Product Only
  • No Variation/ No Bundles
  • Keyword Search Volume (1,000 & up)
  • Price ($25 & up)
  • Sales (300 units & up)
  • Revenue (9,000 & up)
  • Reviews (500 & below)
  • Profit Margin (25% & up)
  • Item Weight (3lbs & below)

Important things to consider about the product:

  • Not Patented/ Trademark
  • Not included in HazMat/ Gated Category
  • Eligible for PPC 
  • Not Breakable/ Not Electronic
  • Has market trends in your location (can be found on Google Trends). Here is where you’ll know the seasonality of your product if it is only in high demand in a particular season or the demand is pretty much steady throughout the year. That’s what we love to see. But you can also take advantage of this data for seasonal products to know when to launch them and pick up sales by the time the season starts.
  • Wiggle Room for Improvement

Now let’s dive into step-by-step how to use both tools for Amazon FBA product research.

Black Box product research

In this case, we are going to look into products in the Kitchen and Dining category. Again, we used the criteria above as filters to be applied – you can see it in the picture below:

From millions of products listed on Amazon, we were able to sift through all of these from the criteria we set in just a matter of seconds using Black Box.

Eventually, we narrowed down and selected 3 potential winning products:

  1. Spice rack organizer for Drawer – List Price: $32.99, Monthly sales in units: 385, Average monthly revenue: $10,006.15, Average Review Count: 37 Average reviews 4.2, Weight: 0.0021875 lbs, Age from Launching: 5 months
  1. Housewarming gift/ Wooden Cutting board – List Price: $25.99, Monthly sales in units: 319, Average monthly revenue: $10,523.81, Average Review Count: 108, Average review 4.6, Weight: 0.15 lbs, Age from Launching: 16 months
  1. Waist Apron with 3 pockets, Black Apron for Bistro or Cafe – List Price: $34.99, Monthly sales in units: 549, Average monthly revenue: $19,209.51, Average Review Count: 249, Average review 4.3, Weight: 0.40 lbs, Age from Launching: 3 months

For product #1, aside from passing all of the criteria we set, the important thing to take note is that this product has a list price of over $30, which means that this puts you at an advantage given that the size and the weight of this product are very light and compact and can occupy less storage in Amazon warehouse which will result to smaller storage fees.

The fact that it sells 385 units per month says a lot about the sales velocity of this product which means high stock turnover. And the most important part here is it has 4.2 rating which means there is enough room to improve this product – the challenge here is to look into the negative and positive reviews left by customers to identify the features that need to be addressed and improved.

Same with product #3 – it also passed all the criteria we set as well as being more lightweight, easy to pack, and can occupy little storage space in the Amazon warehouse. It shows even more potential for profitability from the sales velocity which is 549 units per month. This explains that among the three potential products, this item has the highest average revenue gained in a month.

Not to mention that it has only 4.3 ratings which means that there is still room for improvement, the challenge is to create a design either with more utility pockets or create a more bistro chic apron made from premium material that is also waterproof. Any new feature that can add to its functionality and be aesthetically pleasing will create a unique selling point for your product.

Product #2 is a product idea we can explore and possibly build an entire brand around it. Its target market is for housewarming gifts or people who love to present at dinner parties and they would like to display their cold cuts and cheeses on this wooden cutting board.

This is also very easy to source as the material is wood and you can customize the design and the shape to make your own. Just a reminder that there are some marketplaces that are more strict when it comes to products that have wood in them so just make sure that the product you are about to launch is Amazon compliant and double-check it with your supplier.

Xray product analysis

Moving on to the Xray tool, when you have clearly defined your target market it is now easier to scan for potential products based on the product ideas you have identified that can provide solutions to your target market’s needs. And understand what keywords your target market use in their buying journey.

We begin by typing in our desired product search keyword “coffee kettles” in the Amazon search bar. What we love about Amazon is the long tail keyword suggestion feature that lets you explore more subcategories about the general keyword you just typed in. You will now discover a more specific type of coffee kettle for a specific use or location where it can be used.

The long-tail keywords suggested here are:
coffee kettle electric
coffee kettle stovetop
coffee kettle camping
coffee kettle gooseneck
coffee kettle pot
…and more!

We chose to explore products listed under “coffee kettle gooseneck”. And this is where the Xray tool comes in. Xray gives us an overview of the current data estimates of these products containing key metrics to understand if we can compete among these competitors.

Xray will give you data on:

  • Total Revenue
  • Average Revenue per month
  • Average Reviews
  • Average Price
  • Average BSR
  • Success Score

Tips for using Xray

To get even more relevant data from the initial results from Xray, we will share some pro tips to make the most of this tool.

First, we hide the Sponsored Products from the result as we like to see only those products that are ranking in sales organically and not backed by ads. That way we will know how the products are performing without the aid of PPC.

Second, we remove all of those products that are breakable and electric, because we are staying away from breakables and items with electronics. We don’t want our first item to sell to get broken in transit or in Amazon Fulfillment warehouses or have difficulties in passing all documents in order to be allowed to sell an electronic item.

We chose the coffee kettle gooseneck made from stainless steel – durable, lightweight and compact.

Third, we sort out the revenue column from highest to lowest. We would want to see half of our competitors earning more than $9,000 per month. Another speedy way to recognize if this product is profitable is to sell based on the number of sellers that are earning more than our criteria in a month.

Doing those advanced techniques, we can now see a list of competitors selling coffee kettle gooseneck with the same design and material. The average price is $31 and the Average Monthly Revenue is $13,263. And looking at the revenue, 7 out of the top 20 sellers are earning more than $10,000 per month. The average BSR is 46,842 which is included in the Top 5% BSR Rankings on Amazon, meaning these products are ranking the highest in terms of this category.

With an average review count of 1,727, it’s a little more than our criteria. But the average review rating is at 4.5 which means there is still room to improve on this product. We just need to capitalize on the design flaws of our competitors and develop a product that is more enhanced than the rest of the competition.

Overall, using Black Box and Xray has helped Amazon sellers discover those niche products that you wouldn’t normally find profitable until you play with the criteria and try to find that sweet spot to discover these unique products that provide solutions to the problem of a specific target market.

Next steps

For starters, you can try Helium 10 for free – their free trial also includes access to both tools. Even though it’s limited, it’s still enough to get a glimpse of what each of them has to offer.

If you eventually decide to sign up for Helium 10, use these coupon codes to save some money:

  • ORANGE10 for 10% off any plan lifetime
  • ORANGE6M20 for 20% off the first 6 months

Apply any of these at the checkout when signing up.

Also, here you will find more information about different Helium 10 tools and how they can help in your Amazon business.

Get 10% off every month for any Helium 10 plan 10% off every month
Get 10% off every month for any Helium 10 plan
Use a discount coupon code ORANGE10 and save 10% on any plan every month when signing up for Helium 10!
Get 20% off the first 6 months 20% off first 6 months
Get 20% off the first 6 months
Use the ORANGE6M20 discount coupon code to get 20% off the first 6 months!

About the author 


Ieva is a Content Marketing Manager at Orange Klik. Since Ieva has joined the company in 2019, she has contributed her writing skills to create content in many ways. If you follow Orange Klik on social media, read weekly newsletters and blog posts - Ieva is the one behind all of it.

When she's not working, you can find her outside, hiking or strolling the streets of a city she's currently in, with a camera in her hands.

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