Qualifications, Requirements, Benefits, and Program Details of Seller-Fulfilled Prime
All Amazon sellers choose between fulfilling orders themselves, and letting Amazon fulfill the order through their processing centers. Recently, Amazon began enabling sellers to self-fulfill via Amazon's Seller-Fulfilled Prime Program.
What does this mean? Sellers using the Seller-Fulfilled Prime Program can provide the shipping benefits of Prime to all Amazon Prime member consumers while still shipping orders directly to the customer from their own site. Like all things Amazon, however, there are specific qualifications, requirements and details to know...
If you are a seller on Amazon and are curious about Amazon’s Seller-Fulfilled Prime Program, let Awesome Dynamic™ guide you through the process. This discussion provides tricks and tips, advantages and disadvantages of choosing to ship your products yourself directly to Amazon Prime member customers.
What is Amazon’s Seller-Fulfilled Prime Program?
Amazon’s Seller-Fulfilled Prime Program is a fairly new program that provides a way for Amazon sellers to provide Prime shipping benefits to all Amazon Prime members while still fulfilling all orders themselves. This way, the seller can have access to Amazon’s Prime members.
Product listings of the sellers merchandise will display the “Prime” badge for eligible customers, and will connote all of the quality and service benefits that the Prime program means to them.
Details of how the program works:
- Sellers must provide the free Prime shipping template and promise to provide 2-day shipping to Prime members. Sellers can define the areas to which they will offer 2-day shipping.
- Sellers must provide free standard shipping to ALL customers in Continental U.S.
- Sellers must go through Amazon’s online shipping interface to purchase shipping using Amazon’s “Buy Shipping Service”. Sellers can link their own UPS account which will enable them to apply any negotiated rates. While shipping is discounted, it is on par with general rates, however, and not as deeply discounted as Amazon’s FBA program. Third party shipping tools can and may use the Merchant Fulfilled API.
- Order must be picked, packed, and shipped same day. It must ship from seller’s location by 2pm local time. Seller’s shipper must have it in by their last pickup time scheduled for that day.
- Seller can decide which products participate in the program. Seller-fulfilled Prime Program orders will show “Prime” badge next to it.
- Amazon’s Seller-Fulfilled Prime Program offers Prime customers the same customer service benefits as though the product they are buying was shipped via Amazon FBA. Because Amazon takes responsibility for the service, Amazon handles the customer service.
How Returns Work in Amazon’s Seller-Fulfilled Prime Program
The seller must adhere to same shipping, returns and customer service requirements as FBA:
Seller pays return shipping in these cases:
Buyer pays return shipping in these cases:
Seller ALWAYS pays for return regardless of reason:
Always be customer-centric. Returns that come back for reasons that the seller does not agree with should be accepted and used as an opportunity to actually build customer service.
Same Day Shipping
Same day is a great benefit of Prime and nos sellers who self-fulfill can offer it as well via access to Dynamex, a partner of Amazon having hubs in cities all around the country. Orders must be received by 1:00 PM local time. Seller must pick, pack and label their products by 1:30 PM. Dynamex will pick-up between 1:30 and 3:00 PM. Same day shipping is generally administered in certain large cities.
What are the qualifications and requirements?
- ≥ 99% On-Time Shipment Rate
- ≥ 95% use of Buy Shipping Services
- < 1% Cancellation Rate
- Seller qualify for this program by succeeding throughout a 90 day “Prime Trial”
- 5 to 90 days to complete 200 orders
- If seller don’t get any orders in that 200, the clock resets, which can be a challenge for new sellers.
- Must meet all performance requirements
- During this trial, the Prime Badge does NOT show
- If seller fails to meet requirements, the trial period will be reset
Any seller can opt to start the Prime trial right away.
The Pros and Cons of Amazon’s Seller-Fulfilled Prime Program
The Pros and Cons versus FBA and Self-Fulfillment Purchase all shipping using Amazon’s Buy Shipping Service:
- Prime logo on seller’s listing lends credibility and quality
- Many temperature controlled items cannot be shipped via Amazon FBA so seller must arrange shipping without involving their fulfillment centers. This program lets the seller do so while servicing Amazon Prime members. Sellers who market perishable items requiring temperature control settings can probably benefit most through Amazon’s Seller-Fulfilled Prime Program.
- Customer perception: returns are more seamless with Prime and customer service is better.
- Seller can reach more customers. Many Prime customers are in remote locations who trust the Prime tag for quality product and service assurance. Also, many want the order within 2-days, or even same day (for which a premium can be charged).
- Seller must adhere strictly or seller will lose the “Prime” opportunity.
- It can be expensive. The customer-centric benefits, such as 2-day shipping, can add up. The seller, however, can limit how far they will ship.
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