If you can't speak, write, or read Japanese – then this guide is for you. Navigating the Amazon.co.jp website can be a daunting task, but this guide will make it easier to order nearly anything off of this website. From start to finish, I will show you how easy it is to use the site in English, and also how to use a forwarding service. Don't be intimidated or shy about ordering a Japanese product. After finishing this guide, you will be able to select from thousands of products that are available on the Amazon.co.jp website.
When you first pull up the the Amazon website, click the "In English" button to switch between languages. Be warned, changing the front page of Amazon Japan to English, will cause the site to display mostly American based products.
Below, I have attached an image of the Japanese menu seen on the left side of the web page.
I recommend navigating the site using the Japanese menu. As mentioned above, using the English version of Amazon.co.jp, will cause the site to show American products.
Below, I have translated some of the categories seen on the menu. Feel free to try navigating around using both the English and Japanese version of the site.
Once you have found your item, it's time to checkout. Let's pretend we are buying a glass coffee mug. In the picture below, circled in red, you will see this "Would you like to see this page in English? Click here" on the product page.
This will change the checkout area to English. Select "Add to Shopping Cart" to proceed to the next page.
Next, click on the "Proceed to Checkout" button.
If you already have an account on the American version of Amazon, chances are it will not work. Enter in a new email address, and select "I am a new customer." After that, click on the "Sign in using our secure server" button.
Fill out the information below and you will have created a new account.
Finally, input your address below and you are finished.
Using a Forwarding Service
Certain products cannot be ordered directly from the Amazon Japan website. Items like TVs, cameras, and other electronics may not ship directly from the website. Books, household appliances, and movies are eligible for shipment to international addresses and offer a fair and reasonable shipping rate.
Please check around for the best prices, sometimes the shipping rate can be as expensive as the product itself. If you use a forwarding service, like the one I described in the video, then you will have no problem getting your product shipped overseas. Be careful when choosing a forwarding service because shipping rates can vary from company to company. Sometimes the shipping rates that Amazon.co. Japan gives, can be expensive.
How it Works
If you're not familiar with how a forwarding service works, it's very simple. When you buy a product from the Amazon Japan website – simply type in the address of the forwarding service company. Amazon will then ship the product you ordered to that company. From there, the forwarding service company will ship the product to you, no matter where you are. So, the forwarding service acts like a middleman – allowing you to buy nearly anything that you wish off of the Amazon Japan website.
Hopefully, this guide will give you a better understanding of how to navigate the webpage. You do not need to know any Japanese, but it is helpful. Whether you are looking for that perfect gift for a friend, or just a magazine in Japanese – you now have the tools to do so. Explore the site and have fun!