The Early Days
Dave Supinger has always been an entrepreneur, beginning at a young age. It started off with selling candy in elementary school, and evolved into importing airsoft products from China in Jr. High to sell to his friends. Growing up in the suburbs of Salt Lake City, Utah, throughout the years he had a passion for sports, friends, working out and making money.
When Dave was younger, his father would sit down with him and teach him principles of entrepreneurship in hopes to spark creativity. He was taught about stocks, sales and much more at a young age. His first venture was selling candy to his friends at home and school. His father loaned him his first $10 to buy bulk candy at Costco. He quickly paid back his investment and asked to go to Costco to get more. This led to him seeing that there was an airsoft craze happening within his jr. high, and he wanted in.
Dave did a lot of research which led him to buying airsoft in bulk on eBay. He found that he was able to buy the products for around $8 a piece from an eBay seller, so he brought this information to his father to hear his thoughts. His father questioned this by saying, “If this guy is able to sell them for $8, it means that he is buying them for much less than that. Find his source and you will make that much more money.” This lit a fire in Dave’s entrepreneur mind, leading him to find a direct manufacturer in China, allowing him to begin importing the product for $1.15 per item.
After quickly making some cash, he wanted to expand and began selling trading cards as well as other products online through eBay, growing his sales to $380K in products on eBay during his senior year in high school.
Dave then spent a few years serving a service mission in Long Beach, California for his church. Upon arriving home, he was ready to start his entrepreneur career once more. From here he quickly learned how to build websites. He built a penny auction website called Don’t Be Beat, which ended up not gaining traction and he quickly shut it down. From there he decided to go to college and major in entrepreneurship as well as minor in marketing. After earning his Associates Degree from the Utah Valley University he decided to take a semester off to start a business.
During his time at the University, he came up with an idea to develop an app that would revolutionize how discounts and deals would be promoted locally. He pitched his idea in a few competitions and won funding, but soon after the beta was developed he shut it down due to some unforeseen issues at the time. This was his second big attempt at starting a business that failed.
Dave has constantly come up with new, innovative ideas to start businesses or products but at this time was unsure of where to pivot, so he began building websites for other people. He quickly discovered that he didn’t like working in this industry, due to it requiring so much of his time and he only had so much time available to give. He quickly realized he wanted a business that would run around the clock, so he could make money while he slept and wouldn’t be 100% dependent on his billable time.
He then ended up selling that business and decided to get a job to help fund a new project when the idea came. Dave got a sales job within supplement manufacturing and worked that job for a few years learning the industry. Here, he was introduced to affiliate marketing and the power it can have on a business. He also worked with many people who sold dietary supplements online, and saw how much money they were able to make based on their purchase volume.
Many of these sellers were selling their brands on Amazon and other online marketplaces and even into retail. So he would learn as much as he could from these sellers until he made the decision to test it out himself. He went out and started digesting all the free content he could on how to sell on Amazon, because he didn’t have much money at the time. This led to him opening up a credit card to fund his first supplement business.
His first product was a dietary supplement for stress support and was very successful with it. He started selling on Amazon doing private label midway through 2015 and ended 2016 just under $400k in sales. He built thousands of reviews on this item, and expanded into 18 other products, and added multiple brands. With some changes within Amazon’s policies, it destroyed his business strategies and in 2017 landed him at only $85K in sales for the year.
From here, he had a decision to make. He could give up, or keep pushing and learn new marketing strategies to sell on Amazon FBA. He began implementing everything he could, joining Amazon groups to masterminds, softwares and much more to start learning tactics that worked. He quickly found that the methods that used to work, seemed to work in different ways and that he had to be creative with them to follow Amazon's TOS.
During 2018 Dave cleared $2.6M in sales and quickly learned the importance of inventory, cash flow and many other things within the business. His growth exploded quickly which brought a few challenges that he pushed through. From here, he learned that by having the #1 best selling product in dietary supplements put a target on his back for competitors to attack his products and listings. This led to an account suspension and other product manipulation.
These attacks were not just done to him, but competitors were doing it to many other sellers at the same time to help their own products and sales. You can read more here about the court case explaining what eventually happened to those sellers. Dave went back and forth with consulting companies working to get his accounts back, learning a lot about appeals, the processes and what companies can help and the ones that don’t know how to appeal accounts.
This led Dave to understanding the importance of having multiple marketplaces and sales channels. Essentially he learned not to put all your eggs in one basket, because at any time you can get shut down, or your business could be halted for a bit, like his was. He also learned the importance of your buyer data, and how that can help build external traffic into your listings for ranking and reviews.
Dave decided it was time to push into other marketplaces like the brand new Walmart marketplace. Yes you heard that right, Walmart opened their marketplace to third party sellers, similar to Amazon. Allowing people to register an account and sell products online on Walmart. This eventually led to just under $500K in sales during 2020 on Walmart and is continually growing. Walmart has been working to become competitive with Amazon and is now making a big push.
During this time, Dave decided to test out eBay and see if he could pick that back up and learn how to sell on eBay after all these years. He jumped in around July 2020 and that year he quickly closed $120K in sales. He learned that there are a lot of hoops to jump through, but you can scale super fast in eBay.
This is how Dave started his entrepreneur journey selling products online which led to millions in sales. He has a vast knowledge of multiple marketplaces that he has experience selling on and currently sells on many other platforms. He has done anything from Clickfunnels, to his own website sales, to Facebook ads selling products in Facebook messenger with bots.
How Seller Academy Began
In 2019 Dave was approached by a few large companies who were looking to improve their sales online through Amazon. They were having problems protecting their buy box from competitor review manipulation, and more. They were unsure of how to improve sales, from which he ended up working with them, consulting on selling on Amazon. He helped them enroll in a brand registry, a transparency program, and a few other programs to help protect their brands from competitors as well as maintain their buy box.
From here he helped them to build out programs within the company to boost reviews and buyer loyalty. This also helped to find ways to improve their products and much more. While working with these companies he decided that it was time to follow his passion, which is coaching others. Dave has a passion for business and has helped hundreds of people start their own businesses from scratch.
These businesses have ranged from small investors to big investors and have helped many of them grow to over $50K - $100K a year in sales, which shows by his reviews of his students. Seller Academy teaches people how to sell on Amazon FBA, Retail Arbitrage and has added How To Sell On Walmart Marketplace. Dave really cares about his students and puts in a lot of time and energy into building a great program for his students that is for every skill level.
Dave not only is a coach that has helped many people build profitable ecommerce businesses, but he is also in the industry himself. This continues to help him keep learning and testing new strategies as well as continually find current tactics to things like ranking to page one and how to boost reviews on products. This allows him to provide up to date content in his coaching programs of strategies he uses for himself, but also that his students are using.