Whether you’re a new MFN seller or seeing high order volumes, be ready to pause
As Amazon struggles to ship out FBA orders quickly enough, Amazon 3P sellers are jumping into merchant fulfillment. It’s important to understand the metrics Amazon expects from MFN sellers – and how to keep out of trouble. This does not just apply to the current situation driven by Covid-19. These concepts can be relevant during any kind of natural disaster or business disruption.
A late shipment rate of less than 4 percent
An order cancellation rate of less than 2.5 percent
Follow these tips to ensure you don’t run afoul of Amazon’s rules:
Check your stats every day. Watch them like a hawk.
Get out every order by the promised ship date. Don’t rely on third-party software. Actually look in Seller Central to see which items are not shipped out, and get them out ASAP.
Ensure that you get an origin scan by your carrier. Amazon doesn’t consider the order shipped unless it is scanned.
If you even start to feel behind, go on vacation. You can do this in settings in your account. Temporarily pause accepting new MFN orders until you are caught up.
What happen when you run out of inventory or simply mess up and need to cancel an order? You want to ensure that you don’t get negative feedback.
Try these strategies:
Buyers don’t like when you leave them hanging past the estimated ship date. If you figure out you won’t be able to ship, cancel sooner rather than later. Be timely and apologetic in cancellations. Don’t wait. Explain that you are cancelling the order immediately so that the buyer has time to place a new order with someone else.
When cancelling an order, buyers understand the truth and a valid reason why the order must be cancelled. For example, a tornado shut down our operations. Send a message stating that a weather event happened today in your location. Safety of your employees is paramount, so you are not requiring staff to come in today to prioritize their families.
Buyers don’t like it when sellers confirm orders, only to cancel them and issue a refund. This is technically mail fraud. In addition, buyers become very angry when an order is cancelled, yet they can see that it is still available for sale on Amazon.
What should MFN sellers do long-term? Ensure you have staff redundancy to fill orders even if your regular MFN staff are not available. And be sure that someone can put your store on vacation via mobile if your infrastructure is not functional.
Amazon MFN sellers, we are here for you and your business! Let’s talk 877-289-1017 or visit our website.
Lesley is co-founder and co-owner of Riverbend Consulting, where she oversees the firm’s client services team. She has personally helped hundreds of third-party sellers get their accounts and ASINs back up and running. Lesley leverages two decades as a small business consultant to advise clients on profitability and operational performance. She has been an Amazon seller for almost a decade, thanks to her boys (19 and 13) who do most of the heavy lifting.