Amazon is now allowing customers who are returning an FBA item to choose to receive a free replacement rather than a refund, with “no cost” to sellers. Of course, the cost of the replacement is a cost to sellers using Fulfillment By Amazon, but some may prefer it over losing the sale, and Amazon directs the customer to return the original item.
If the customer does not send the original item back, or if the original item is returned damaged, Amazon says it will reimburse sellers according to the FBA customer returns policy.
Amazon provided the following notice to FBA sellers:
Hello from Fulfillment by Amazon,
Getting a replacement for an FBA item just got easier for customers. As of September 5, 2018, a customer returning your item can ask to have a replacement sent to them free of charge – and there will be no cost to you.
For you, this means less time focusing on payments and refunds because the sale of the original item is unaffected. For customers, this means more convenient FBA returns, consistent with Amazon returns as a whole.
How it works
To get a replacement item, a customer starts a return through the Online Returns Center or Customer Service.
If a customer requests a replacement, Amazon ships one from your inventory and asks the customer to send the original item to one of our returns centers. If they don’t send it back, or if the original item is returned damaged, Amazon will reimburse you according to the FBA customer returns policy.
Other things to know
Only FBA items in new condition qualify for replacement.
Only Amazon can offer a replacement item, and only if the item is in your inventory.
You won’t be charged fees or receive payment for replacement orders. Your fees and payment on the original order will stay the same.
For more information on your replacement orders, go to your Replacements report.
Thank you for selling on Amazon.
The Fulfillment by Amazon team