Sponsored Link
Email This Post Email This Post

Amazon Gives FBA Sellers Breathing Room on New Inbound Workflow

Amazon Gives FBA Sellers Breathing Room on New Inbound Workflow

Amazon had given sellers until September 1st to adapt to a new “Send to Amazon” workflow for sending inventory to its Fulfillment Centers. It’s now giving sellers more breathing room as it addresses some of the problems sellers have pointed out and gives them more time to adapt.

Sellers described a number of problems they said would make preparing shipments to Amazon FBA more convoluted, timely, and expensive after Amazon made the announcement in June. It appears from seller comments that Amazon is requiring sellers to include additional detailed information about shipments that is difficult for them to provide before creating their submissions.

Just some of the feedback sellers shared about the new process included the following:

“Box info has to be entered beforehand. With the current supply chain constraints, we often do not get full shipments from our suppliers, and creating a new shipment with whatever quantities we get is much more complicated with the new system.”

“Not knowing the destination before you pack is a major problem.”

“What happens if your shipment is split between multiple fulfillment centers and you’ve already packed your boxes? That’s the reason I’ve continued to use the old system.”

“The first obvious question us sellers want to know is why are you not allowing both systems if they work for everyone involved? Forcing sellers into one system simply creates havoc and a lot of issues that many others will chime in the details I’m certain.”

“We ship out of one warehouse, with one truck. Using the new workflow has forced us to deliver to do different Amazon distribution locations, even though its LTL. We can’t send a truck to two different states to deliver.”

On September 1, Amazon said it had solicited feedback from sellers and continued to incorporate suggestions and requests into the updated workflow, as well as delaying the hard deadline, writing in part:

“You now have more time to transition to the Send to Amazon workflow. The old workflow will remain available through October 16, 2022. You can make edits to shipments created with the old workflow through November 29, 2022 . Please also note that shipments on the old workflow will not be deleted and will be available ongoing as well. This revised date will be updated shortly on the Send to Amazon workflow welcome banner and help pages.”

One seller asked Amazon what problem was being solved by the change. Another seller responded, “Sellers will bear the cost in money and time of sending items directly to FC’s where Amazon wants the product instead of to the closest one and then Amazon splitting shipments and diverting products themselves.”

In response to a question, the Amazon moderator replied in part, “To ensure that Seller’s inventory is available to meet the latest customer demand signals and to fulfill the Prime promise, we need to know the box contents before the shipment splits are shared.”

The moderator answered additional questions in the thread.

While many of the sellers commenting appeared to be higher-volume sellers, an interesting discussion emerged when a low-volume used-books seller weighed in on the topic of split-shipments (when Amazon requires sellers to send their inventory in multiple shipments to different fulfillment centers).

A seller replied by saying split-shipments had been less common for them for at least the last three years or so, but added that it made less sense to require a small seller to split shipments than a larger seller.

“Saying “because you’re a small seller” is actually a good reason NOT to split the shipment. It makes sense (for Amazon) if you have 30 units of an item to have you send 15 to one FC and the other 15 across the country. For a single book, it matters little where it goes. Furthermore, you end up with absurdities like a $20 book (which will net about $12-14) being split off into a shipment by itself to send across country, at a cost of $10 or more.”

With October 1 looming, sellers are feeling the pressure to prepare for holiday sales without additional distractions.

Ina Steiner on EmailIna Steiner on LinkedinIna Steiner on Twitter
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/.