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This article applies to selling in: United States

Global Selling Fulfillment Options

Fulfilling customer orders can be one of the biggest challenges of selling globally. Amazon offers solutions that can help you, whether you fulfill orders yourself or choose to have Amazon fulfill them for you with Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA).

Fulfilling orders on your own

If you want to fulfill your own orders, and you decide to ship orders to another country, be aware of the relevant customs requirements. The orders you ship to another country may be subject to import taxes, customs duties, and fees charged by the destination country. Amazon will not be responsible for any customs duties and taxes associated with FBA inventory. Any shipments arriving at an Amazon fulfillment center with customs duty charges due will be returned to sender.

You can choose to use a private carrier, or you can mail packages through the postal system. Whichever carrier you select, contact them to find out shipping costs as well as any size, weight, or other restrictions.

Tip: If you decide to ship individual parcels, research business rates to manage your shipping costs. See a list of logistics companies.

Even if you do your own packing and shipping, Amazon provides tools and services to help streamline your business and to provide your buyers with a positive experience.

  • Seller Central. Just as when you sell in your home Amazon marketplace, the Seller Central portal provides access to the tools you need to manage your orders. You can see at a glance such information as how many orders you have to ship, your feedback rating, and your payments summary. The Amazon Selling Coach provides information that can help you manage your inventory and increase your sales.
  • Business analytics. Amazon provides reports for you to view and download. You can use these reports to keep track of sales trends, unshipped orders, inventory status, and more.
  • Buyer order communications and payment management. Amazon takes care of basic communications related to the customer order, such as confirming shipment with the buyer after you confirm to Amazon that you have shipped the order, collecting payment from the buyer, and crediting your account.
  • A-to-z Guarantee. In the event that a buyer requests reimbursement because an order never arrived or was different from what they expected, the A-to-z Guarantee program facilitates communication between you and the buyer to help make things right. The program helps increase customer satisfaction.

Fulfilling orders by using Fulfillment by Amazon

If you've determined you can sell your product in a given marketplace but prefer not to fulfill customer orders yourself, Amazon can do it for you. Sign up for Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA), and Amazon will pick, pack, and ship inventory on your behalf. FBA can help your online sales increase by providing greater exposure to your products and offering fast shipping to your Amazon customers --a highly attractive benefit. In addition, all of your FBA orders are backed by Amazon's world-class customer service in the language of the local marketplace to answer customers' questions about their orders. With FBA, Amazon also takes care of returns handling for the orders we ship for you.

Amazon currently offers FBA services to sellers in Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

Note: Amazon.in (India) and Amazon.cn (China) are not currently open to sellers based outside these countries.

If you already use FBA in your primary marketplace, it does not automatically extend to another Amazon marketplace when you begin selling internationally. For example, if you currently sell on Amazon.com and want to sell on Amazon.co.uk, you must create a new seller account for Amazon.co.uk and convert your listings to FBA in that UK marketplace account. However, if you are already selling in one Amazon European marketplace, such as Amazon.de, and want to sell in another Amazon European marketplace, such as Amazon.co.uk, Amazon.fr, Amazon.it, or Amazon.es, you can use the same Seller Central account. Review Register and Launch for step-by-step instructions.

Benefits to choosing FBA when selling internationally include:

  • Higher visibility and sales. FBA is a fulfillment solution that can also increase your sales. How does FBA help give you a competitive edge? In countries where the Amazon Prime program is available, many Prime members will filter product searches based on eligibility for Prime shipping, so they may not even see your offers if they are not in FBA.
  • Around-the-clock local-language customer support. Amazon's world-class customer service is included as part of FBA for orders placed on Amazon, which helps you maintain high levels of customer satisfaction. Customer support is provided in the local language of the marketplace where you are selling your products.
  • Scalability. FBA is scalable with your business' growth and helps you handle peaks during busier times of the year. FBA can accept a single unit or thousands of units of a product. You decide how many units you send through FBA at any given time. This flexibility is particularly helpful when you are entering a new marketplace.
  • Delivery satisfaction. In addition to customer support, your FBA products receive the trusted Amazon delivery experience that customers value - from a wide range of fast, often free delivery options to package tracking and gift wrapping options.
  • Increased shipping speed. Since your inventory could be stored in the country in which you are selling, we may be able to deliver your order to local customers faster than you would be able to directly from your current location.

Deciding on a fulfillment option

There are many factors in determining whether you want to fulfill international orders yourself or through Fulfillment by Amazon, such as your business' cost structure, how hands-off you want to be with fulfillment, and whether you can provide local-language customer support independently. Either method you choose comes with a different set of cost considerations, so set your pricing strategy according to the economics of the fulfillment option you select.

Important: When you sell in any Amazon marketplace, your customer will be responsible for paying for returns to a local address. If you provide an international return address, you will need to reimburse them for international shipping fees.

Alternatively, if you fulfill with FBA, your customers can send their returns directly to a an Amazon fulfillment center located in the same country as the marketplace site. Learn more about your fulfillment options.

One key difference between the two fulfillment methods lies in handling international customer returns. When you sell in any Amazon marketplace, you'll need to provide a local return address for your customers or offer them free shipping on returns. When you use FBA in a particular marketplace, FBA will provide the local return address and will take care of receiving returns on your behalf. In contrast, when you sell in a marketplace outside your home country and fulfill those customer orders yourself, you provide your own local address for returns --or else reimburse the customer for international shipping charges. If you expect to reimburse customers for international shipping charges, you may want to build the expected rate of product returns into your product pricing so you can absorb this cost. Learn more in Customer Support and Returns.

Before deciding on a fulfillment option, be aware that storing your inventory in another country -such as when you use FBA in a particular marketplace- may have tax implications for your business. Learn more in Taxes and Regulations.

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