Amazon splits my shipments up - Solution?


#1

New seller here. I noticed there has been an ongoing problem for sellers for a couple of years, but haven’t found a solution on the board. Has anyone come up with a good workaround to handle the following situation? If not, Amazon, could you please look at my suggestion in the last paragraph?

Here’s my problem: When I prepare a shipment of books for Fulfillment by Amazon, I pick out the size of box that I can lift when it is full. I put each book into the box as I enter into the system. Then, I prepare it for shipment. When I am through doing all that, Amazon takes the shipment and splits it up into tinier shipments to different fulfillment centers. Sometimes when that happens, I have as few as two books that are going to different fulfillment centers. I am always scrambling to find smaller boxes to adjust to their shipment processing.

Thanks for any help you can give. Amazon, if you’re out there, you might think about adding a field that indicates which fulfillment center the book is going to so sellers can pick the items that are going to the same fulfillment center ahead of time and be sure they have enough books to fill their box. It sure would make our lives easier.


#2

When shipping to a single location, Amazon pays to disperse your inventory across the country on their dime. If it is not cost effective for Amazon to do this, they split your shipping plan into multiple shipments.

There are two ways to avoid this:

  1. Ship multiple units. The rule of thumb, from our experience, is to ship no fewer than 18 units per SKU. Any less, and you risk the likelihood of your shipment being split.
  2. Pay to force a single shipment. In your Fulfillment by Amazon Settings you will see a section called Inbound Settings and in that section a setting called Inventory Placement Option. You can see the current setting is set to ‘Distributed Inventory Placement’. You can click the ‘Edit’ button on this section and change it to ‘Inventory Placement Service’

Keep in mind that by doing this, you will be assessed a fee per unit and this will help offset the shipping costs Amazon will pay to disburse your inventory. This fee is based on weight and can cost more to you than shipping split shipments if you are not careful. You can read more about this service and the fees on the FBA Inventory Placement Service help page.


#3

Mav-Dak has provided the answer.

I’ll provide the next question you should answer.

If the cost of multiple shipments or the inventory placement fee is significant, are these books which should be fulfilled by Amazon.

If you’ve been an FBA seller for a couple of years, you have probably noticed that fewer books are suitable.


#4

Mav-Dak, Thanks!

Lake, good point! I have only been selling books for 2 months and thought selling would be pretty simple. Silly me. There are really a lot things to consider when it comes to making a profit and I will definitely have to factor these inventory placement fees into the mix. Hope I catch on to all this pretty soon. Right now, I’m feeling the pain.


#5

I find that orders are much less likely to be split if I run it in the morning; those seem to go to a nearby FC. Not sure if this is because it tends to go closer early in the day, or if morning favors east coast.
Try finalizing at a different time of day, see if that makes a difference (and sometimes, you’ll just be out of luck. I have one book that’s been sitting on hold for a month, waiting to be matched with other books being shipped in).


#6

I do agree that it would be nice to know if your shipments are going to be split far sooner in the process. It is what it is though. Small chance Amazon upgrades this.


#7

Thanks.


closed #8

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