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After Amazon Admonishment, Sellers Say Seals Are Not the Problem

After Amazon Admonishment, Sellers Say Seals Are Not the Problem

Amazon advised sellers to use seals on products in its Consumables product group, but sellers said the real problem stems from warehouse workers.

In a recent post, Amazon said that an analysis of complaints found that buyers perceived products as “used” when they arrived (or were manufactured) without seals.

But sellers who use Amazon’s FBA fulfillment service pushed back, saying workers in Amazon fulfillment centers sometimes put customer-returns back on the shelves when they shouldn’t.

Seller summer.glau suggested, “How about preventing FBA returns from automatically being returned to sellable inventory under ‘New’ condition? Make them all ‘unfulfillable’ so that we can recall and decide for ourselves, or at least, automatically change the condition to ‘used’ so that the expectation is set lower for the customers.

“We have a few complaints about ‘missing accessories’ and 1 complaint about old sold as new. ALL of them came from FBA returns that were just put in the ‘new’ inventory pool.”

Seller Belle_Chemical_Compa said, “We are the manufacturer of our products and have seen images of our products with the seal removed, product replaced with something else, and then regular tape over the opening and the lid put back on. The customer complained we were selling a used item as new and posted it on a product review (which sellers are no longer able to respond to), and yet I know for a fact the product does not go into a box to be shipped to Amazon in this condition.

“The only viable explanation is it was returned to Amazon in this condition and then resold to another customer. You can see the image under our vegetable glycerine product reviews.”

Another seller, OmarS, said they would love it if Amazon allowed them to select SKUs that should never be placed back into sellable inventory. The seller also offered an interesting solution: “Rather than asking sellers to use a random seal, Amazon should design a universal that can be used on any product. This way, FC workers can easily detect used items.”

Amazon created a video that offers advice to sellers on preventing product condition issues.

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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). She is a member of the Online News Association (Sep 2005 - present) and Investigative Reporters and Editors (Mar 2006 - present). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to ina@ecommercebytes.com. See disclosure at EcommerceBytes.com/disclosure/.

One thought on “After Amazon Admonishment, Sellers Say Seals Are Not the Problem”

  1. I would imagine that Amazon is more than likely causing problems within their FBA program. Amazon is too big to exist in my book. Amazon’s video talks a lot about the buyers “experience” or perception of received products. Too bad Amazon ever got big enough to put places like Borders book stores under years ago. Cute video to teach us what customers believe when they get packages. Too bad it doesn’t address the issue of how Amazon destroys the buyers “experience” altogether by not having the option of going to a place such as Borders to really have a shopping experience when purchasing items. Well… you know what I mean. Just put a seal on it and the customer will feel like they just went to Disneyland. I don’t like much about Amazon anymore but then maybe it is just me. After all I don’t get excited hearing about who got to space first from the clowns that are so huge on technology and playing games that most of us cannot afford to play..

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