I wrote yesterday that Amazon will now prioritize and allow only certain products into FBA. This means that more sellers will start looking at the seller fulfilled option to cover any potential FBA inventory shortfall so that they can continue selling.
Given the effect the Coronavirus has had on logistics, Amazon is recommending closer contact with 3PLs and carriers generally to ensure that shipment times meet customer delivery expectations.
Here is the email that Amazon has sent out:
We are closely monitoring the developments of COVID-19 and its impact on our customers, selling partners, and carriers. Although customers can continue to purchase online, these purchases could be subject to restrictions and, depending on your carrier, your shipments could be slowed down. This email is to guide you in best managing your account, based on your fulfillment solution. Note that we may temporarily increase the standard transit time and thereby extend the delivery promise. This will affect only the delivery promises that customers see on the Amazon website and not the handling time in your seller central account.
Action required from you:
1- For your seller-fulfilled shipments (non-Prime): If you expect delays in shipping your orders, click here to extend your handling time as appropriate. If you have evidence that shipped orders will be delivered late, please promptly alert customers of possible delays.
2- For your Seller Fulfilled Prime (SFP) shipments: We recommend that you stay in regular contact with your supported SFP carrier and that you monitor your pick-up schedule as well as your own operations activity closely.
(i) In case your SFP supported carrier’s pick-up schedule proceeds normally and it has no impact on your operations: No action is required from you. Please continue to ship on time and meet the program performance requirements.
(ii) In case your SFP supported carrier is not able to to pick-up from you or if you are experiencing delays or issues with your operations: Disable Prime on your Prime Shipping template by switching the ‘Enable/Disable Shipping Region Automation’ button to ‘disabled’. This will instantly remove the Prime badge from your SFP ASINs. (Note that you can restore it at any time). In this situation, you may exceptionally ship your orders with other available carriers. Alternatively, click here to move certain ASINs from the Prime shipping template to your Default standard shipping template. These ASINs will not be offered as Prime anymore and you can add them back to your Prime Shipping template at any time.
If you are not able to process any customer orders, please activate the ‘on holiday’ feature in your Seller Central account in ‘Settings’ under ‘Listing Status’. Your seller fulfilled offers will be de-activated. Note that your FBA listings will remain active.
If you are unable to fulfil confirmed orders, please cancel the orders and promptly inform your customers.