Recently I purchased products from a toy manufacturer and upon receiving I listed them on Amazon. I got a phone call from the Manufacturer regarding my listing and advised me not to sell on Amazon or ebay, only on my own website i can sell. I took my listings down as I did not want to loose my account, but the irony is The Manufacturer himself sells the item on Amazon and does not want to have any competition which can bring the price down or effect his sales. I understand Manufactures not wanting you to sell on Amazon, but this one wants to sell alone on Amazon. What can we do to stop this kind if Bullying from Manufacturers. I am not even discounting the item and sold it over $5 of the suggested retail price.
Change your online seller name.
Was it St…? Large plush toys… same experience and did not mention when I bought
Edited by: CARDNSUCH on Jul 22, 2014 8:53 AM
If you have a wholesale account and signed a contract of some fashion they are within their right to say where, how, and how much you sell it for. It seems tedious, and sometimes it is, but that’s the way it is. Some have legitimate reasons, others just want to make sure they get the biggest piece of the pie.
If you don’t have a wholesale account with them, there isn’t much they can do but complain to you and Amazon. There is a tactic called Retail Arbitrage that can fall in the cracks where basically you pay retail price for an item with the hopes that you can sell higher.
If you have a wholesale account, and you violate it, they have legal options that can make your life a bit unpleasant. Most though will just close your account. Don’t try to sell under a “fake” account either. Particularly if you list the items as NEW. They will find out.
In my opinion as a manufacturer … It also has to do with HOW 3rd party sellers are representing their products on Amazon. If you treat the buyer unfairly… like sending old slightly damaged, not accepting returns, shipping very late or possibly after months you find great deal and start selling unknown to you counterfeit copies of their high quality products.
There is no way for the manufacturers to control the overall image of their product they worked so hard to develop. And once “bad” products start going to the buyers and the bad product reviews start appearing on the product detail page it is impossible for these reviews to be removed and it can ruin all the manufacturer has worked so hard to obtain.
Also even if buyers decide to buy elsewhere it is common for buyers to read reviews on Amazon first so it can be devastating…in more ways than you can imagine. But that’s my take from the other side of this heated debate.
You obtain products within the authorized channel with restrictions on how and where you may sell them. Violate those restrictions and you don’t get any more product, and depending on the terms of the purchase potential penalties.
You entered into those conditions voluntarily when you decided to carry the line, and you have the ability to drop the line.
A lot of wholesalers have restrictions about where you can sell online–it’s usually in your contract. Controlling distribution channels in retail isn’t new. Unfortunately there isn’t much you can do about it, unless you buy under one business and sell under another, which has complicated accounting and tax implications.
Don’t buy from these manufacturers again. Drop them. Competing with their own retailers online is just bad form. It’s been a new trend so when you buy from a manufacturer now ask if you can sell on Amazon. A high number of them nowadays will not sell to you if you are on Amazon and not just because they are selling them on here.
The manufacturer has a right to tell you where you cannot sell. Many of our vendors restrict us from selling online or require us to first sell on our own website before being given approval to sell on Amazon.
We’re also prohibited from discounting certain items or falling below the vendor’s MAP price.
We’re required to sign online agreements with every vendor we work with if they approve us to sell online.
You don’t necessarily have to listen to them, it’s illegal to force MAP policies, but it’s not illegal for the company to choose to never do business with you again.
I don’t think it’s bullying. Just like a manufacturer can choose who they physically sell their inventory to they can choose where they’d like their customers to sell items. If you never signed an online agreement then they have the right to make this request of you.
This is the country of free trade. This is not the Soviet Republic. Do not be intimidated and bullied by any manufacturer. If Amazon allows you to sell it, go ahead.
Edited by: SUPER ELECTRONIC WAREHOUSE on Jul 22, 2014 9:27 AM
Just wanted to tell you…
I looked at your store…
and your stuff is wonderful!!!
Really cool gadgets,
many i have never seen before…
This is the norm now days. We have about 100 different company’s/manufacturers/vendors that we buy from, and over a third do not allow Ebay or Amazon selling
I would agree. Drop the manufacturers and find new products maybe?
I personally manufacture my own goods and have had quite a lot of sellers approach me for those items. My own branded products I do not sell to any other retailer. Have to be very selective in order to maintain a good product viability plus generating brand recognition. Selling to every Tom, Richard or Harry would not be suitable for my business.
If you are turning over a lot of items then you could approach manufacturers to develop your own ranges of products?
From what the OP is saying, it sounds as though he did not sign such an agreement or contract.
I love it when manufacturers think they know all there is to know about selling on Amazon. How many have come here, confused and bewildered, because it turned out they didn’t?
It’s always best to check on any seller restrictions when taking on a new distributor/manufacturer. It could mean the difference between tying up thousands of dollars for a month or a year!
I don’t see the irony.
the manufacturer wants to maximize profit.
To do that, they will sell to people such as you, to resell on your own site and thus gaining additional exposures to their products.
why would they want competition on ebay and Amazon when they can sell it themselves at full price?
…I don’t know if you also have a B&M, but I do, and can tell you I have fought a losing battle (since the 90’s) with manufacturers who also now are ‘retailers’. (Of course, they all claim their websites do not take business away from their retailers) Very early on when selling online first became popular many manufacturers had ‘information only’ websites with store locators including stores’ websites, it was helpful. Now (unfortunately) most manufacturers also retail their own products (which is NOT helpful to B&M’s). My B&M store has its own website and that seems to placate manufacturers when mentioning I also sell on Amazon.
…just a thought but do you sell on your own website (outside of Amazon)? Maybe that would help for those particularly pesky manufacturers…
…i’ll sign the petition…
Complicated but worth it. Multiple entities is a lot more work but provides numerous benefits, this being just one of them.
A lot of posters are moaning about the unfairness of what manufacturers do now, but actually manufacturers have been putting restrictions on what dealers can sell to for hundreds of years. They allow some just to sell in a certain city or certain state, or country, or only retail buyers and not wholesale.
As retailers and resellers it is irksome, but it is also remains the fact. Manufacturers have a well established legal right to limit the selling activities they grant to people who sell their items. This particular manufacturer allows you to only sell on your own website, not on third party sites. If that works for you then do it. If it does not meet your economic model, then find another manufacturer that works for you.
The biggest problem most resellers have is they cling to the idea that everything should be made with your best interests in mind. It is not. It is not fair. We are small fish in a bog ocean and the big fish set the rules. Our success comes from determining what we can do, that is too troubling for the big fish to worry about, and take advantage of those opportunities.
If the opportunity is not there, it is not there. It is wasted energy bemoaning the lack of fairness. Forget fairness. Look for an opportunity that works.
I sell several product lines on my website that I can only sell on my website. One of the lines I sell has a company that has exclusive rights to sell their product on Amazon. Another only will sell to you if you have a B & M or a website. ( Although I think enforcing that is hard, because I do see some of their product on Amazon.) And there is another that threatened to cut off my supplier if I sold their item on Amazon. ( However, this year I have seem multiple sellers of that item) .
So when I make a purchase of an item that I want to list on Amazon, I check beforehand, and ALWAYS get it in writing that it is OK.