Reverse Search


Reverse Product Search is a unique portal on Tactical Arbitrage available on the following subscriptions: Online Arbitrage, Online Arbitrage + Wholesale, and Full Suite.

Reverse Product Search works like this:

  1. Create a list of Amazon products you like.
  2. Find retailers in the Tactical Arbitrage database that sell those products.
  3. Analyze the search results to find profitable ROI (Return on Investment) opportunities.

Why is Reverse Product Search different?

With Reverse Product Search, more commonly known as Reverse Search, you provide a UPC (Universal Product Code) or an ASIN (Amazon Standard Identification Number) and Tactical Arbitrage searches thousands of websites for cheaper prices.

Reverse Product Search looks at the same marketplace of products and prices but from a totally different angle.

1.  Activating advanced tools

The Reverse Product Search page has two states: Advanced and Basic.

This article shows you how to use the Advanced tools. For information about the Basic tools, see:

To display Advanced tools on the Reverse Product Search page, please:

  1. Click Reverse Product Search on the side menu bar. Then, the Reverse Product Search page should displays.

  2. In the top left corner, click the toggle towards Advanced. The Advanced tools page displays.

2.  Customizing reverse search settings

The next step is to customize search settings at the top of Reverse Product Search panel. There are four settings at the top of the panel:

1- Also Show Title / Image Matches

2- Disable Duplicate Checker

3- Cache Only Search

4- Sourcing From and Selling At

Each setting is described by clicking on the "?" buttons shown below.

1- Also Show Title / Image Matches

This switch can greatly increase the number results in your search and potentially uncover hidden opportunities. But there's a downside to consider.

Let's back up. First, understand what happens if you leave the switch in the default OFF (orange) position.

  1. When OFF, Tactical Arbitrage searches the Amazon site for product ASINs (Amazon Standard Identification Number) .
  2. Inside the ASIN, Tactical Arbitrage locates the UPC (Universal Product Code).
  3. Tactical Arbitrage then scan its database for products with the same UPCs.

What's the result?

You get clean data. Which means you get search results with terrific matches between Amazon and the retailers in our database.

What's the downside?

The search results list will have skipped over products which don't have perfectly matched UPCs or sites and products that don't have UPC's at all.

Some people regard that as a missed opportunity.

  • Toggle ON this switch to include products with matching titles or product images even if the UPC codes don't match. As the UPC match is not there, we are relying on an intelligent combination of image and title matching.

    Although still very good, you might have to sort through some data with imperfect matches. The upside is you will find opportunities that others overlook.

We suggest new Tactical Arbitrage users toggle OFF while learning how to manage search results. Advanced users should consider the toggle ON option to maximize results.

2- Set Cache

Before making a selection here, you need to understand the difference between a live search and a cache search.

  • A live search scans company websites looking for current product information. That's a good thing. The downside is that it takes more time than a cache search.
  • A cache search checks data in the Tactical Arbitrage cache memory. Every search run by our users is temporarily stored in cache memory.

Searching the cache has good and bad points. The good point is speed. A cache search produces results faster than a live search.

A cache search has three drawbacks.

  • Product data (e.g. prices, availability, etc.) in the cache might be out of date, depending on how long you set the cache to, and how recently live results were extracted from there.
  • The list of products that meet your search filter thresholds might be incomplete.
  • Product promotions are generally captured during a live search. Relying on cache only searches could you missing special deals.

Suggested use

  1. New Tactical Arbitrage users run cache only searches until they get a feel for the search and analysis process.
  2. Run a cache search with a long cache period (3 to 5 days). This produces quick search results. Later on the View Data panel, click the Update All button on your results, to get current information.

3- Cache Only Search

  1. Toggle ON this switch and your search will look only at data in the cache memory. Be sure to select a time period on the Set Cache drop-down menu.
  2. Toggle OFF this switch and you'll run a live search. That means Tactical Arbitrage checks current data on company websites.
  • Note: The Cache Only Search toggle disappears when you select LIVE ONLY on the drop-down menu.

4- Sourcing From Selling At

Sourcing From

Select a country from which you'll source products. That means you're telling the platform to search websites in a certain country.

  1. Click the box beside Sourcing From. A drop-down menu displays.
  2. Select a country.

Generally, you'd select your base country, but that's not required. You're free to select any country from the drop-down menu. You could, for example, select India, though you might need to brush up on your Sanskrit if you want to read product descriptions.

Selling At

Click here to decide where you'll sell products. The list of countries in the drop-down menu is the same as above (i.e. Sourcing From).

Generally, you'd select your home base country, but that's not required. If the Sourcing From and Selling At countries are different, you'll see another filter appear in the Costs and Fees filters for Cost per lb to ship Overseas - so you can add this additional fee. Currency conversions will be dealt with in the View Data results.

  • Note: We suggest users specify the same country in the two boxes until they develop an advanced understanding of the platform.

3.  Entering search data

A Reverse Product Search begins with a product list. There are six ways to enter a product list into the algorithm. 

Three methods require you to input codes or keywords:

A.  Importing bulk product codes
B.  Using the quick search tool
C.  Using the keyword search tool

The other three methods are easier to use because you select categories of products from drop-down menus:

D.  Scan best sellers
E.  Scan most wished
F.  Scan movers and shakers

  • Sections 4 to 6 below describe methods A to C.
  • Sections 7 to 9 describe methods D to F.

4.  Importing Bulk Product Codes

Enter a product list by uploading a file with UPCs/EANs or ASINs. This is a good option if you want to run a search with more than 100 items. 

To upload a file, Select the Import Bulk Product Codes option from the dropdown menu:

4.1  File structure

The structure of the upload file is simple. At a minimum, you need one column with UPCs or EANs. We suggest the top row has the title UPC. Your file can be a csv, xls, or xlsx.

You can add a second column of ASINs. Again, we suggest placing ASIN in the first row of that column.

  • By default, the algorithm looks first for ASINs. If an ASIN is not present, the system looks for UPSs or EANs.

The image below shows an example of the file structure.

4.2  Uploading a file

  1. Select the Import Bulk Product Codes option from the dropdown menu. An upload button displays.
  2. Click UPLOAD NEW FILE. The Use Bulk Product Codes panel displays.
  3. Click Choose File. Locate the file on your computer.
  4. Click UPLOAD. A new panel displays.

4.3  Checking column names

Before uploading, the system asks you to verify the names of the data columns. The system might auto-detect the column names. If not, manually change the defaults.

  • Note: You must name at least one column, either UPC or ASIN. Otherwise the search won't work.
  1. Click the box below Product UPC. A drop-down menu displays. 
  2. Select the name of the UPC column.
  3. Repeat for Product ASIN.
  4. Click Upload.

4.4  Selecting a row number

After uploading a file, the system returns to the Reserve Product Search dashboard. The name of the file now displays.

You can customize the search by entering the start row number. Leave the box blank unless you want to the search to start at a special row number.

5.  Using the quick search tool

The second way to enter search data is to use the quick search tool. You can add up to 100 ASINs, UPCs, or ISBNs.

  1. Select Quick Search on the dropdown menu.
  2. Enter an ASIN, UPC, or ISBN in the search field.
  3. For multiple entries, insert a comma between numbers.

6.  Using the keyword search tool

The third way to enter search data is to use the keyword search tool.

  1. Select Quick Keyword search on the dropdown menu.
  2. Enter a product keyword.
  3. Click the All categories box. A drop-down menu displays.
  4. Select an Amazon product category from the list.

7.  Using Scan Best Sellers

Instead of entering codes, keywords, or numbers, there are three methods with drop-down menus. The first menu option is Scan Best Sellers.

This option will search a list of the most popular Amazon products based on sales.

This search tool has several levels. If you select a product category on Level 1, the scan searches 100's of thousands of items.

If you want to narrow the search, select sub-categories in other levels. Once you go to Level 2 or beyond, the number of products searches is lower. Up to 9600 items in most cases.

To search Amazon's Best Sellers list:

  1. Select Scan Bestsellers on the dropdown menu.
  2. Click the box beside Level 1. A drop-down menu displays.
  3. Select a general category.
  4. To narrow the search, go to the next level down.
  5. Click the box and then select a sub-category on the menu.
  6. Continue down the list to narrow the search, if desired.
  7. Leave Start from # if you want the search to start at the default row number one.

8.  Using Scan Most Wished

The second menu option is Scan Most Wished.

Scan Most Wished is an Amazon product category. It's a list of the most popular products on Amazon's Wish List. The list is updated every day.

  • Note: This tool has only one search level.

To scan Amazon's Most Wished list:

  1. Select Scan Most Wished on the dropdown menu.
  2. Click the box beside the dropdown menu and another drop-down menu displays.
  3. Select a category from the menu.

9.  Using Scan Movers and Shakers 

Movers and Shakers is an Amazon product category. It's a list of products which have had the biggest increase in sales over the past 24 hours. The list is updated every hour.

  • Note: This tool has only one search level.

To scan Amazon's Movers and Shakers list:

  1. Select Scan Movers and Shakers on the dropdown menu
  2. Click the box beside the dropdown menu and another drop-down menu displays.
  3. Select a category from the menu.
  4. Click the SEARCH button.

10.  Using filters

By now you have completed two important steps:

  1. Selected basic search parameters (e.g. source country and live vs cache search)
  2. Entered search data (e.g. codes or scans)

The next step is to enter your search filters.

Scroll down to the bottom of the Reverse Product Search page and you'll find Filter Products. This is where you refine searches and find profitable products. All the filters offer potential benefits, but your success really depends on using the first filter - Store Price Adjustments.

For more information, see these articles:

11.  Saving filter configurations and searching

It has been a long journey, but now you're almost ready to launch a search. Just a couple of steps left.
Click here to learn how to:

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