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12 posts from October 2011

October 07, 2011

Label items one by one and include them in an inbound shipment

If your workflow calls for you to label items one by one and add them to one or more inbound shipments, you can do this by following the steps below:

1. Submit the CreateInboundShipmentPlan operation for a single item—the item that you want to label and ship.

If you have previously created a listing for this item, specify only the SellerSKU for the item.

OR

If have not yet created a listing for this item, specify the SellerSKU, ASIN, and Condition for the item.

Note: For many items, it is difficult to know the ASIN before creating a listing for it. For this reason, whenever possible you should create a listing for an item before submitting the CreateInboundShipmentPlan operation for that item.

The response elements include FulfillmentNetworkSKU, DestinationFulfillmentCenterId, and ShipmentId.

2. Use the FulfillmentNetworkSKU returned in Step 1 to create a label for your item, and then label the item.

3. Check the DestinationFulfillmentCenterId returned in Step 1 to determine which Amazon fulfillment center to ship the item to.

4. This step depends on whether an inbound shipment already exists for the destination of the item.

If this is the first item of a new inbound shipment, or if the FulfillmentNetworkSKU returned in Step 1 indicates an Amazon fulfillment center that is different from any existing inbound shipment that you have in progress, do the following:

  • Submit the CreateInboundShipment operation to initiate a new inbound shipment, using the ShipmentId that was returned in Step 1.

OR

If you are adding this item to an existing inbound shipment, do the following:

  • Identify the ShipmentId of an existing inbound shipment that has the same DestinationFulfillmentCenterId as the DestinationFulfillmentCenterId returned by the CreateInboundShipmentPlan operation in Step 1.
  • Submit the UpdateInboundShipment operation using the ShipmentId identified in the preceding bullet, as well as the SellerSKU and QuantityShipped values for the item.

Read: Amazon Product Ads September 2011 newsletter

In the September 2011 newsletter, review our list of the top five things to do to prepare your Product Ads account for the holiday season.  Also, read about upcoming changes to identify your blocked SKUs so you can take immediate action to resolve rejected product ads.

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October 05, 2011

Create an FBA inbound shipment containing more than 200 items

Amazon recommends that you specify no more than 200 items (as defined by SellerSKU) when submitting the CreateInboundShipmentPlan operation. Given this limit, how do you create an inbound shipment with more than 200 items? Follow the guidelines below:

  1. Divide your items into batches, with each batch containing 200 items (SellerSKU values) or fewer.
  2. Submit the CreateInboundShipmentPlan operation for the first batch of items. For each inbound shipment plan that is returned, create a separate inbound shipment by submitting the CreateInboundShipment operation.
  3. Submit the CreateInboundShipmentPlan operation for the second batch of items. If an inbound shipment plan is returned that matches an inbound shipment created in Step 2, (i.e. they have the same DestinationFulfillmentCenterId and LabelPrepType values), then add the items from that inbound shipment plan to the matching inbound shipment. Do this by submitting the UpdateInboundShipment operation. Otherwise, create a new inbound shipment by submitting the CreateInboundShipment operation.
  4. Submit the CreateInboundShipmentPlan operation for each batch of items. Continue matching the returned inbound shipment plans with existing inbound shipments, adding items to existing inbound shipments (using the UpdateInboundShipment operation) when possible and creating new inbound shipments (using the CreateInboundShipment operation) when necessary.

The following is a hypothetical workflow that illustrates in detail how to create an inbound shipment containing more than 200 items. In the example below, the inbound shipment contains 500 items.

1. Submit the CreateInboundShipmentPlan operation for items 1 through 200.

    Suppose the following two inbound shipment plans are returned:

  • Plan 1: 50 items, ShipmentId = FBAEX0001, DestinationFulfillmentCenterId = RNO1 LabelPrepType = NO_LABEL
  • Plan 2: 150 items, ShipmentId = FBAEX0002, DestinationFulfillmentCenterId = PHX3, LabelPrepType = NO_LABEL

2. Submit the CreateInboundShipment operation twice to create the following two inbound shipments:

  • Shipment FBAEX0001: 50 items
  • Shipment FBAEX0002: 150 items

3. Submit the CreateInboundShipmentPlan operation for items 201 through 400.

    Suppose the following two inbound shipment plans are returned:

  • Plan 3: 180 items, ShipmentId = FBAEX0003, DestinationFulfillmentCenterId = RNO1, LabelPrepType = NO_LABEL
  • Plan 4: 20 items, ShipmentId = FBAEX0004, DestinationFulfillmentCenterId = RNO1, LabelPrepType = SELLER_LABEL

4. Submit the UpdateInboundShipment operation to add the 180 items from Plan 3 to shipment FBAEX0001, as Plan 3 and Plan 1 have identical DestinationFulfillmentCenterId and LabelPrepType  values.


5. Submit the CreateInboundShipment operation to create a new shipment FBAEX0004 for the 20 items in Plan 4, as the DestinationFulfillmentCenterId and LabelPrepType values of Plan 4 do not match those of any existing inbound shipments.


6. Submit the CreateInboundShipmentPlan operation for items 401 through 500.

    Suppose the following inbound shipment plan is returned:

  • Plan 5: 100 items, ShipmentId: FBAEX0005, DestinationFulfillmentCenterId: PHX3, LabelPrepType: NO_LABEL.

7. Submit the UpdateInboundShipment operation to add the 100 items from Plan 5 to shipment FBAEX0002, as Plan 5 and Plan 2 have identical DestinationFulfillmentCenterId and LabelPrepType values.

The following three inbound shipments have been created:

  • Shipment FBAEX0001: 50 + 180 items, DestinationFulfillmentCenterId = RNO1, LabelPrepType = NO_LABEL
  • Shipment FBAEX0002: 150 + 100 items, DestinationFulfillmentCenterId = PHX3, LabelPrepType = NO_LABEL
  • Shipment FBAEX0004: 20 items, DestinationFulfillmentCenterId = RNO1, LabelPrepType = SELLER_LABEL

Upcoming webinar - Holiday Best Practices with Amazon Product Ads

Amazon Product Ads - Holiday Best Practices

Tuesday, October 11, 2011 at 10:00 AM - 11:00 AM PDT

Register now

In 2010 Amazon.com was the most visited retail website on Black Friday (WebProNews) and Cyber Monday (Experian).

Take advantage of increased traffic to Amazon.com during the holidays by implementing our top tips for success.  In this webinar we will discuss holiday traffic trends, best practices for optimizing your account and more.  This free event will be interactive, so please come prepared with your questions.

Attend our FREE live webinar on Tuesday, October 11 at 10:00 AM PDT.

 

-Michelle S.

October 03, 2011

Packaging Tips to Increase Buyer Satisfaction

Buyers expect to receive their orders on time, in excellent condition.

To help protect your items and provide a world-class buying experience, follow these packaging tips when packing orders for shipment.

  • Choose the right box
  • If you’re not using Fulfillment by Amazon and ship your items yourself, make sure to package your items in strong, corrugated cardboard boxes. Check the bottom of the box for a weight limit. Don’t wrap the outer box in any kind of paper, as it could tear off and your shipment could be lost in transit or delayed.

  • Use the right packing materials
  • Invest in packing peanuts and bubble cushioning, especially if you’re sending anything fragile. Leave enough space between items in the box, and wrap individual items with double cushioning if necessary.

  • Know how to send high-dollar items
  • Ship expensive jewelry and other valuables in a box no smaller than 7-by-4-by-2 inches. Make sure to use a signature confirmation service to confirm receipt. No seller wants to hear their high-dollar item “never arrived.” Also, don’t attach anything to the outside of the box that could reveal the item’s value.

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