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Amazon Rejects Products from FBA Sellers

Amazon sellers attempting to send shipments of inventory to FBA fulfillment centers have been receiving rejection notices on certain products within the shipments. While it’s not unheard of, there were widespread reports last week of unexplained refusals of inventory, with sellers saying they could see no logic behind the actions.

Many sellers reported receiving a message pertaining to one or more products in a shipment they were trying to prepare for shipment to Amazon fulfillment centers. The message read: “You are already at the maximum inventory allowed for this product, due to capacity or other restrictions. This product must be removed from this shipment.”

Fulfillment By Amazon (FBA) is a program in which merchants send their inventory to Amazon warehouses, and when items sell, Amazon packs and ships the products and provides customer service.

One seller noted on Thursday that Amazon had advised them to ship more units of a particular product through their FBA alerts, noting there were only three units in stock, only to have Amazon refuse to accept the items in a shipment they were preparing to send.

When one seller reported a single incident last month, an Amazon moderator explained, “ASIN Quantity Limits are set in place as a means of helping sellers avoid incurring storage fees for items that our Fulfillment Centers already have exceptionally high inventory levels of.”

But last week, sellers said they received different answers from Amazon seller support about why it was happening.

One reader told EcommerceBytes that FBA reps informed them that its warehouses were “overfull.” But sellers told online selling consultant Lisa Suttora that Amazon Seller Support told them it was restricting ASINs that don’t have a high enough sales volume as part of a new program Amazon is testing.

Suttora blogged about the problem over the weekend. She noted that Amazon gave no advance warning to sellers.

She also noted in her blog post that FBA sellers would find it difficult to source inventory going forward if they couldn’t predict which products Amazon would accept and which they might refuse.

She then learned Amazon had since added an ASIN limit section to the Inventory Health Report – the only way to view it is to download the report – however, she said the ASIN Limit reports are showing blank to the sellers she has heard from. And in some cases, the ASINS that were rejected were not listed in their ASIN Limit report.

Suttora said she’s personally seen cases of Amazon rejecting ASINs in books, home, toys, footwear, garden, clothing, kitchen, and health & beauty. “I can also now confirm reports of ASIN rejects for wholesale products (both replenishment ASINS and new-to-market wholesale products), retail arbitrage products, private label products (first time ASIN going into Amazon!), and used and new books. (So far no bundle ASINs have been rejected that I know of.)”

Suttora also noted that the current problem with ASIN rejections are completely different from other limits sellers encounter such as FBA storage limits or FBA Long Term Storage fees.

Amazon declined to comment when we reached out on Thursday and Friday about the issue.

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Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to ina@ecommercebytes.com.