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Weighing In on Amazon Shipping Charges

 

When it comes to maximizing your profits as an Amazon Seller, it is vital that you pay close attention to Amazon’s policy regarding weights and dimensions.

Questions regarding these policies are among the most common we receive, especially from Sellers just starting to get their feet wet. We hope the following tips will help you minimize your costs and ensure that you are getting the most bang for your buck.

  • Make sure you are using an accurate scale. Put the bathroom scale away and invest in a quality shipping scale. Some have a detachable readout, which can simplify the process. Knowing accurate weights can be key to keeping your costs down.
  • Remember, Amazon rounds up, so what you consider to be a package weighing 7.1 lbs. may be billed as 8 lbs. Is there any way for you to shave that tenth of a pound from your product packaging? Figure out a solution and you may put yourself in a lower shipping charge tier, thereby saving you considerable money.
  • Also remember, price is determined by weight AND dimensions. A box that is small but weighs a lot, or a box that is large but weighs very little can both add additional cost to the shipment. You can reduce your shipping costs by ensuring that you aren’t exceeding Amazon’s requirements. We’ve seen companies substantially reduce their costs simply by reducing their packaging by as little as a half-inch. Is there a lot of empty space in your box? Making an effort to reduce that space with a better fitting box can also lead to significant savings.
  • Need to know your “dimensional weight” for a product? Here is a simple formula to help you calculate: Add the three dimensions for your box together and divide the sum by 166. This will give you the billable weight.
  • Remember, “shipping weight” is not the weight of your shipment to Amazon. It is the weight of a single product in its packaging as it would sit on an Amazon shelf. Think of it as “gross weight.”
  • When you weigh one of your products, make a habit of taking a picture of it on the scale including the weight display and keep them on hand. Should you ever need to open a case with Amazon, the photo helps to provide evidence of the inaccuracy, allowing Amazon to correct the item’s weight on their end. Doing so may potentially lead to a reimbursement for any overcharges incurred.

 

Understanding Amazon’s shipping policies can be a challenge. We encourage every seller to educate themselves on these policies to help reduce costs and maximize profits. We hope you’ve found some of these tips helpful and we would like to thank our friends over at www.refundcentral.com for assisting with this article.

When Goodwill Isn’t So Good

When you hear that someone committed an act of goodwill, you would often consider that a positive gesture – and in most cases it is. But what if someone was expressing goodwill on your behalf, without asking your permission first? Better yet – what if, as a gesture of goodwill, they gave away your hard-earned money without your permission? That doesn’t sound quite as positive now, does it?

In essence, that is how Amazon Goodwill refunds function. The buyer of your product is dissatisfied. Amazon presents a gesture of Goodwill in the form of a refund. This refund doesn’t come from Amazon’s account though – It comes from yours! Amazon is acting on your behalf under the guise of keeping your customers happy, something they never asked your permission to do.

Here is the best part. If you aren’t really paying attention, this is all done in the background. Now, Amazon is often willing to reimburse you for their “goodwill.” The important thing to remember, however, is that they aren’t going to act without you asking them to in the form of a claim. Also, you only have 18 months to make this claim or you are really out of luck!

Once you make the request formally, you very well may see a reimbursement. Unfortunately, most sellers don’t realize that they need to file or don’t understand that there is a deadline. Amazon isn’t exactly eager to remind sellers to make those claims either. That’s what we are here for.

We hope you have found this information useful and are able to benefit from a better understanding of how Amazon works.

Finally, special thanks to refundcentral.net for their assistance with these helpful tips to get the most out of your Amazon Seller Experience.  Thanks for reading and we’ll see you soon!

Amazon Announces Up-Coming Press Conference

If you didn’t already hear, Amazon has recently announced and emailed invites for a press conference being held in Santa Monica, California on September 6th. Amazon has stayed hush on the reasoning for the conference (The full text only states: “Please join us for an Amazon Press conference”) but insider experts predict it could be a handful of topics.

Because the conference is being held in Los Angeles, rumors have been circulating of the possible introduction of new Kindle E-Readers and Tablets, Android-based phones, or some type of Instant Video Service or Games for Amazon Prime subscribers. Although no one really knows the reasoning, the event will be hosted at the Barker Hangar in Santa Monica.

What do you think Amazon could be announcing?

Buy.com to Launch Fulfillment Service

Many people mistakenly believe that Buy.com’s marketplace can not contend with channels like Amazon or eBay. Regardless of what people may believe Buy is a major player in the eCommerce market and regularly does over 50 million in yearly sales. Because of their success as a sales channel Buy has attracted some big league sellers offering a wide range of products.

Recently, Buy.com has been surveying Amazon and eBay sellers about their use of Amazon’s FBA service, or Fulfillment By Amazon, in preparation for the launch of its own fulfillment service. The survey asked sellers about their experience using Amazon FBA, including whether or not they use it for non-Amazon.com orders.  Buy.com also inquired about fulfillment fees for Multi-channel items fulfilled by Amazon compared to typical Amazon orders.

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How to Entice More Holiday Sales with Mobile E-Commerce

Appeagle.com–The holiday shopping season is already upon us and consumers everywhere will be taking to their mobile devices to find deals on their favorite items. Google even says that 54% of holiday purchasers will be using their mobile devices to search for specials way earlier than the usual go-crazy shopping day ‘Black Friday’. Even when people visit a physical store, they usually go with their mobile phone in hand. Google found that 62% of shoppers used their phones in-store to research items.

With all of this mobile activity, one thing is clear: Mobile e-commerce is here to stay. But are you prepared to field the wave of activity you may encounter this season? If a recent report by Strangeloop is any suggestion, many online sellers have a lot to work on.

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Inside Look at eBay’s New Global Shipping Program

December 11, 2012—Earlier this month, eBay announced a new Global Shipping Program for third-party sellers and now, eBay is seeing the results. This week eBay said they were seeing positive results and feedback from the new program from both buyers and sellers who have sent and received international orders through the program. This is great news for interested sellers looking to join the Global Shipping Program.

Senior Manager of eBay’s Global Shipping Program, Manish Joneja, said eBay’s new program is seeing early positive results and the GSP makes international transactions as easy as domestic transactions.  Sellers participating in the program are seeing an increase in sales along with a new customer base from countries they hadn’t had access to before. So far, third-party sellers have been happy with service levels for tracking and delivery time. As for buyers, Joneja mentioned, “we’re also hearing from buyers that it’s a great experience too.”

eBay’s Global Shipping Program removes the complexity and risk of international shipping for buyers and sellers and many sellers have announced their interest in the international exposure eBay’s new program offers. However, the only drawback sellers have is the potential for listings to appear much more expensive than domestic listings on eBay’s other country websites.

To make the new service similar to that of a freight forwarder, eBay has partnered with Pitney Bowes so sellers can send international orders to a U.S. hub where Pitney Bowes will process and send items out to international buyers. The program includes buyers in UK, Canada, Australia and 15 other European countries.  

Are you interested in using eBay’s new Global Shipping Program?

Shipping Solutions–UPS Shipping Software For Your Business

January 4, 2013–ReadyShipper shipping software provides UPS shippers one of the most user-friendly and powerful shipping solutions available today. It’s quick and easy to download the software and sign up for a 14 day free trial with your existing UPS account number. There is no credit card required to try the software.

Once you’ve registered your UPS account, ReadyShipper shipping software makes it easy to import all your daily orders from your various sales channels. The growing list of ReadyModules means ReadyShipper can connect directly to your eBay, Amazon, Yahoo!, Volusion, PayPal, 3dCart, Network Solutions, OrderMotion, Shopify, Monsoon Stone Edge Order Manager, Atandra T-Hub, Magento storefront and many others in a few simple steps.

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Why you Should Buy from Third-Party Sellers on Amazon

Buying and selling products on Amazon has become a phenomenon. It has become the perfect platform for buyers to purchase their favorite products at the right price. Although the product selection on Amazon is enormous, not everything sold on Amazon is from Amazon. More often than not items sold on Amazon are from third-party sellers than the retail giant. So why is buying from third-party sellers the way to go? We break it down with 4 simple ways.

First off, third-Party sellers, or 3 P’s, are individuals or businesses that sell
products. They are not employees or part of Amazon, but rather freelance sellers looking to sell their own products. Anyone not affiliated with Amazon is considered a third-party seller. For instance, you find your favorite book on Amazon and want to purchase it. When checking out you notice you’re not actually paying Amazon but rather an individual or company (Example:  DragonHeart LLC or Jake’s Store). This is buying from a third-party seller. It is buying a product on the Amazon website but not actually from Amazon. Although many people only want to make purchases from Amazon, buying from third-party sellers actually has its advantages.

  • Supporting Small Business

Whether you support Romney or Obama, Amazon is great vehicle for supporting small businesses. When you make a purchase from a third-party seller on Amazon you are actually helping a smaller business grow– kinda like shopping at a mom and pop’s store rather than Walmart or Target. Amazon gives smaller businesses the chance to use their traffic and marketplace to sell their own goods. Third-party sellers are individuals and businesses looking for another way to sell their products.

  • Better Deals

Typically, buying from third-party sellers can actually help you save money. Amazon sellers are always looking to get their store name featured first and their products in the buy box. To get featured in the buy box, sellers must not only have fantastic seller rating but great pricing. This is what helps buyers. Not only are you getting a better deal than Amazon offers, but you can save money on shipping costs as these sellers are looking for quick ways to distribute their goods.

  • Wider Selection

Although Amazon is known for having an array of products to choose from, normally third-party sellers are the ones with the biggest selection. Essentially, Amazon is like a swap meet. They offer their own goods but it’s the sellers around them that made up the selection. Because these third-party sellers normally specialize in the products they sell, they can offer more variety and selection than Amazon can. Especially for better prices!!

  • Accountability

One of the best parts of buying on Amazon is the accountability. If you’re order doesn’t ship on time or isn’t what you expected, you can always contact Amazon and get it settled. The only drawback is…its Amazon. They’re a giant corporation with hundreds of thousands of emails and phone calls going on every day, so sometimes buyers are sweep under the rug. With third-party sellers, you as the buyer can see and inspect everything that seller has ever sold, their seller rating, and feedback to find the right seller for you. Third-party sellers are held to EXTREMELY tight guidelines and the slightest mistake can mean their storefront being suspended or banned, so customer feedback is important to them. Third-Party sellers are more willing to go the extra mile because they are constantly having to prove themselves with Amazon to increase their rating.