So you finally made the decision to send your inventory into Amazon FBA. Great!!!! It has been a long road already from sourcing a manufacturer, testing products, creating the product listing, etc. You may already be selling on Amazon if you have been doing Fulfilled by Merchant or you are planning on only using Fulfilled by Amazon as your main source of fulfillment. This guide will walk you through how to get your product to Amazon and start using their warehouse services.
Amazon FBA allows sellers to send in their products for storage, packaging and shipping services. Amazon holds onto the inventory until it is sold. Then the Amazon employers will collect, prepare and ship the product to the seller’s customer on their behalf. This helps increase shipping times, reduce warehousing fees and help Amazon with customer satisfaction.
Advantages to Amazon FBA
- Sellers do not need to store inventory in their own warehouse.
- All FBA products get a Fulfilled by Amazon Badge and Two Day Shipping. Loyal prime members look for this badge and are more likely to make a purchasing decision based on it.
- Amazon handles customer questions and returns ( this is good and bad) saving you time on customer service.
- Cost savings on shipping and storage (depends on your volume.)
- Increase in sales velocity. Fulfillment method is one of our indirect factors that influence Amazon A9 Algorithm. Generally, sellers will see an increase in sales when using FBA or seller fulfilled Prime.
Things you need in order to create a shipment
Creating a shipment to FBA is easier if you have the right materials on hand. Here is a list that will help you out when it comes to labeling and packaging your products.
- Scale – To measure the weight of the product and shipping boxes
- Measuring Tape – To measure the size of your product and boxes.
- Poly Bages – to place your product in. (For adult products you must place in opaque bags not clear.)
- Shipping Boxes – if you are sending in multiple products in one box.
- Tape – Pretty self-explanatory.
- Printer – For packing Slips etc.
- Label Printer – you can use a normal printer for labels if you Avery Labels.
- Bubble Wrap / Kraft Paper – Help to protect your items in transit.
- Labels – Avery Labels for Product + Shipping Labels for boxes.
How to send inventory into FBA
Changing Product to Fulfilled by Amazon
- First, you will need to make sure that your product is set to fulfilled by Amazon. Under the manage inventory tab, select the product that you want to set up a shipment for. On the right-hand side, there is a dropdown menu next to the edit button.
- From that dropdown menu select Change to Fulfilled by Amazon. This will take you to another screen to where you are given two options Convert and Convert & Send Inventory. Select Convert & Send Inventory.
- You will be prompted to enter the dangerous good information. If your product doesn’t contain batteries then select no and hit submit. If your product does then enter in the need information and click submit.
Product Already Set to Fulfilled By Amazon
- If your product is already set to fulfilled by Amazon then you will just have to go to your product under the manage inventory tab. Select the dropdown menu next to the edit button on the product that you want to create an FBA shipment for.
- Then Select Send/Replenish Inventory. This will take you to the setting up a shipment screen and we can get started with creating your first shipment.
Setting up the Shipment to FBA
- The first screen takes us to the packaging type that we will be using to send in our products into FBA. you have two options
- Individual Product – Large items that are placed by itself in a shipping carton.
- Case Packed Product – Multiple products generally smaller items in one larger shipping box.
- Depending on which selection you make will dictate what you do in the next step. Just remember it is better to place smaller items into a large shipping box as this is cheaper on shipping. Once you make your selecting click continue.
3. If this is your first time sending in a shipment into FBA and you haven’t entered the product dimensions yet. Please do so under the information/action required. Please Note: that this is the dimensions for the actual product not the size of the shipping box.
4. Next, enter the units per case and the numbers of cases. For example, if you are sending in 10 products within 1 shipping box then Units Per Case = 10 Numbers of Cases = 1. Then select continue.
5. Select the prep type you will be using. I normally do this myself so I select Merchant. This is for who will be placing labels on the product etc. If you don’t want to be placing the labels and getting your shipment ready then Amazon will do it on a per-item fee. But to cut cost it is just as easy to do it yourself. Select Continue.
6. There are two ways you can print labels for the products on Amazon. Print the labels for each product that you will be sending in. We will be placing them later on in the tutorial.
a. Select the All Products tab, here you will be able to select the number of labels you will need and the file type you want it to be printed on. Remember these labels are for each individual item that you are sending into Amazon.
b. Alternatively, you can go to manage inventory and under the product you want labels for. select the dropdown menu next to the edit button. you should see a print item labels button(If you don’t see the print item labels then your product is set to FBM). Click that and it will allow you to print any amount of item labels with your chosen sticker type. This is handy if you want to get your items ready before creating a shipment or just to have on file.
Once you selected created your labels hit continue.
7. Unfortunately, Amazon chooses which distribution center that they will be sending your product too. On this screen, you will notice the FBA location and the price it will cost to send everything in. if you have a lot of products Amazon might send it too multiple locations. If you are happy with price and location go ahead and approve the shipment. Please note this is the placement fee and prep work. The cost of shipping will be done in the next step.
Preparing the Shipment
- Now that we set up the basic info for the shipment we just need to enter the box dimensions, select the carrier and print the box labels. You are also able to leave this screen and come back to it at any time. To find it again just select Inventory>Manage FBA Shipments.
2. Now we are going to select our shipping services. Here you have a couple of different options.
- Small Parcel Delivery – Is for items that are not going to be palletized and being shipped as individual boxes. The most common option is to go with one of the Amazon partnered carries. (Fed Ex is no longer a partnered carrier of Amazon.) You do have the option to go with a different carrier such as DHL and USPS. But for this, we are just going to select UPS.
- Less Than Truckload (LTL) – LTL shipments are for when you are shipping multiple pallets into Amazon. You will have to pass on the information to your LTL carrier and then your carrier will schedule a pick-up and drop off with Amazon.
3. This section is straight forward. Basically you are telling your carrier the unit per box, dimensions, and weight. Please note: that all the information is for the shipping box and not the individual product. So if you are sending 10 units in a 10″x10″x10″ box and each units weights 1.5 Lbs then the weight should be 15 Lbs on a 10 “x 10″ x 10” box.
4. We made it to the last step Congratulations. Now all you have to do is accept your shipping charges and then print your shipping labels. These labels will be placed on the outside of the shipping box in the next section.
( Amazon does not schedule a pick up with your selected carrier. You will have to do this on your own once the shipment is ready to be picked up. Most carriers need a 24-hour notice before pickup.)
Preparing the Packages
- Now we should have two sets of labels that we need to prepare and put on the product and shipping boxes.
- All products must be in there own packaging, if the product does not come with packaging then they must be placed in a polybag.
- The first set is the product labels that we printed in step 6 of Setting up an FBA shipment. These should be placed on each individual product. Make sure that they are clearly visible and placed on the same side as you placed the others. This makes it easier when Amazon receives the shipment at FBA.
- Once each of the products has been labels place them inside your shipping box. Remember to keep the unit amount the same as when you created the shipment. So if you said you were placing 10 units in 1 box make sure there are 10 units per box.
- Finally, tap up your shipping box and make sure it is secure double tap if you have too. Then place your shipping labels on the outside of the box. There should be 2 labels one for the carrier and one for FBA to scan.
- Make sure all labels are clearly visible and placed on the package without any folds tears or obstructions especially on the barcoded areas. Amazon will charge a fee for incorrect or badly labeled boxes also it will cause a delay in getting your product active on Amazon.
Common Mistakes to Avoid When Creating a Shipment
- It is easy to make a mistake when sending in your first FBA shipment to Amazon. Make sure to double-check your work and follow this tutorial. Also if you have any questions you are more then welcome to leave them in the comment section below.
- No Label – Do not forget to put labels on your products and shipping boxes. Amazon might reject the shipment and it will get sent back to you.
- Mislabeling – Be careful when sending products to multiple warehouses, make sure the products and labels match to where they are supposed to be going to.
- Unreadable Labels – There is no point in putting on a label that won’t be able to be scanned. Sometimes printers run out of ink or the stickers become damaged. Don’t get lazy and redo the label if something is off.
- Box Quantity – Always make sure that the products match the amount you said was in each box.
- Box Information – Don’t underweight your boxes thinking you will save a dollar or two on shipping. Amazon will adjust these fees later on. The same goes for dimensions.