Amazon, the world’s largest retailer, has over two million third party sellers registered on its online platform, which continues to grow on a daily basis. Of these third-party sellers, many choose to opt in on Amazon’s FBA service rather than merchant fulfil their products. This is because FBA frees up the sellers time and offers a wealth of benefits, which all help to increase product sales.
But the FBA process is not always as straightforward as you might think, and many companies, particularly start-ups, find it difficult to get their products into FBA in the first place. Fortunately, in conjunction with their partners, KG Logistics are on hand to help if you’re struggling with FBA deliveries.
What is FBA?
As a seller on Amazon, you can choose to use Amazon’s FBA (Fulfilment by Amazon) service. When you opt for FBA, you will send your products to an Amazon fulfilment centre (AFC) where they will be stored, and then Amazon will pack and ship your goods to the end customer on your behalf.
As part of the FBA service, Amazon will manage your customer experience and handle any returns. But above all, FBA saves you a great deal of time. Knowing the fulfilment of your products is handled, you can invest more time in other areas of your business.
Additionally, FBA also helps to boost your selling performance by making your FBA-eligible products stand out from the rest. Each FBA product earns the “Prime” badge, a “fulfilled by Amazon” badge, and has a higher chance of winning the Buy Box.
Pitfalls for arranging deliveries to Amazon fulfilment centres
As these many benefits show, there is certainly an overwhelming case for selling on Amazon with FBA. However, there are a few considerations to take on board before you start using the FBA service. The FBA process is complex, so many start-ups or novice sellers can become overwhelmed.
Not only does Amazon work to strict SOP’s but they also operate a rigid booking-in system. Here are some of the requirements for LTL/FTL deliveries shipped to Amazon FCs.
Amazon dictates that all non-small parcel shipments must be palletised in GMA grade B or higher, 1000×1200 mm 4-way access wood pallets or 1000×1200 mm CHEP pallets when delivering stock to UK. Pallets shipped internationally must be heat treated to ISPM-15 standard. Any broken or damaged pallets are not acceptable and may be rejected at the merchant’s expense.
Any pallets not meeting these requirements or any unauthorised floor-loaded shipments may be refused at the dock, returned to you at your expense or subject to applicable non-compliance fees.
All pallets must be correctly labelled, and should be positioned in the upper right corner of one of the sides of the unitised load so that it is clearly visible. Any pallets carrying mixed but visually similar products must be labelled ‘mixed merchandise’ or ‘mixed SKUs’.
All cartons weighing between 15 kg and 30 kg must be marked “heavy package” and pallets must be stretch-wrapped in clear plastic with a “do not break stretch-wrap” or “do not break down” notification to the carrier.
All Amazon fulfilment centres accept double-stacked pallets provided that they are safe to load and unload, and do not cause product damage during transit. There must be a minimum of 30 cm clearance between the top of the pallets and the roof of the vehicle, and a minimum of 30 cm clearance between the back of the last pallet and the rear of the vehicle.
Bill of Lading
When there are multiple orders shipping from the same pick-up location to the same Amazon fulfilment centre with the same required delivery date, orders must be consolidated into one shipment with one Bill of Lading. The original Bill of Lading information must be made available to the carrier in order for the carrier to arrange an advanced delivery appointment.
There are a number of complex vehicle requirements that must be met in order to successfully ship goods to an Amazon fulfilment centre. An experienced logistics company partnered with Amazon will understand these requirements and arrange the appropriate shipment.
Schedule delivery appointments
Deliveries to an Amazon FC will only be accepted by appointment. These booking requests must be made no less that 24 hours ahead of the desired appointment time via the Carrier Appointment Request Portal (CARP). All deliveries must arrive on time. If shipment is delayed due to unforeseen events, Amazon must be notified.
Failure to comply with correct FBA process, product preparation requirements, safety requirements and product restrictions may result in the refusal of inventory at the Amazon fulfilment centre, disposal or return of inventory, blocking of future shipments to the fulfilment centre, or charging for preparation or for non-compliance at the fulfilment centre.
Common reasons for delivery rejections
- Incorrect type of vehicle.
- No booking, or unscheduled delivery.
- Unsafe or incorrect pallet preparation.
- Damaged freight.
- Incorrect documentation.
These are just some of the reasons why many sellers find sending goods to an Amazon Fulfilment tricky work. The good news is that sellers can work with experienced logistics companies who understand Amazon FBA Logistics, simplifying the process and ensuring the safe delivery of goods.
How KG Logistics can help
At KG Logistics we offer a simplified delivery service into FBA through strategic agreements with Amazon. This not only makes it easier for you as the seller but also eliminates much of the risk of your shipment being rejected.
What is the process?
- Provide FBA No, Amazon SKU and copy packing lists prior to unpack.
- We will arrange packing to FBA specification and arrange booking with Amazon.
- We will then provide delivery date and confirm POD.
For more information please do not hesitate to contact us.