In order to fully participate in the e-commerce market, businesses need to have access to Amazon and its enormous customer base. But when it comes to Amazon fulfillment, there are a number of choices that you as a business owner needs to make.
The first is whether you’re looking for a vendor central arrangement (Amazon buys directly from you) or seller central one (you list your products on Amazon, but still own your inventory). Next, you need to determine if you want Amazon FBM (fulfillment by merchant) or FBA (fulfillment by Amazon).
Below, we’ll define these terms and explore them so you can better decide which is the best arrangement for your business.
What Is Amazon Fulfillment by Merchant?
Typically, most smaller businesses prefer to go the seller central route as they are more able to control costs that way. And, depending on the size of your organization, managing your inventory can be rather simple with the right support.
If you do opt for seller central, the next choice you’re going to be faced with is whether you want to do Amazon FBM or Amazon FBA.
FBA is simple enough—that’s where Amazon will handle all the logistics when it comes to shipping products to customers.
FBM for Amazon means that the seller (in this case, you and your business) is responsible for fulfillment of all of your products purchased on Amazon. That means your business has to handle inventory storage, management, and shipping.
This can be preferrable in many cases to FBA, however, due to the fees that Amazon charges. As mentioned previously, with FBM, the seller has control over costs and is more agile, meaning you can better react to your specific needs (like, for instance, making seasonal hires to respond to predictable changes in sales).
What’s more, you can partner with a third-party logistics (3PL) service provider to support your business through this process, so that your FBM shipping is simplified and manageable, while still being less expensive than FBA.
How Does Amazon Fulfillment by Merchant Work?
So now that we understand what FBM for Amazon is, let’s dive into how the process works.
It’s worth noting that Amazon FBM is often the only fulfillment method that a new seller on Amazon is able to access, as FBA has an approval process which takes time. Amazon FBM shipping, by contrast, is much easier to start.
List Your Products on Amazon
After your business creates an account with Amazon Seller Central, you’re now ready to begin listing your products on the Amazon marketplace. Be sure to look into marketing best practices when it comes to listing on Amazon as the visuals, copy, page layout, and more can help with conversions.
Store Your Products in Fulfillment Center
Since you’re managing the fulfillment process, it means that an FBM order requires that you ship the goods directly from one of your personally operated warehouses. If you have multiple warehouses and sales are predictable by region, you can have your good stored in strategic locations to reduce shipping time and costs.
Ship Your Product Based on Specific Delivery Timeframe
There’s no underselling how important speed and reliability are in the e-commerce industry. With so many options available to consumers, they’ve come to expect that their purchases will be delivered on time and without any errors.
On the Amazon page, it will let customers know when they can expect their order to arrive; you can alter this information to be as accurate as possible, so you won’t leave customers disappointed.
You’ll also be responsible for shipping labels that allow for e-commerce order tracking. This can be done through Amazon or by you.
And finally, you’ll have to update your Amazon selling account with instructions for returns. When a request for return is approved, Amazon will send the customer a return label with your default return address.
When Should You Select FBM?
Managing the entire fulfillment process on your own can be dauting, to be sure. That said, it’s often the best course of action for a smaller business or one that is just starting out.
That’s because the FBA method can be financially prohibitive to the point where low-margin sellers won’t see a profit if they work with Amazon on fulfillment. When managed directly, however, you can control costs and create a more efficient process that ends up generating higher revenue for your business.
What’s more, if you have a smaller catalog of goods, then this process can be easily managed with the help of a third-part logistics provider. With third-party providers, you get access to their expertise and resources (which is pretty much what you’ll get with FBA), but often at a fraction of the price.
Get Expert Support to Optimize Fulfilment Process.
If your business is searching out how to maximize revenue with Amazon FBM, then it needs to consult APS Fulfillment, Inc.
Have your Amazon orders processed quickly, efficiently, and accurately—no company has more experience than APS Fulfillment, Inc. when it comes to optimizing a business’s fulfilment services.
With state-of-the-art warehouse management software (WMS), we make it easy to manage your inventory and track goods. We’ll also support your business and automate the warehousing, prepping, shipping, picking, and packing of your Amazon orders!
With APS Fulfillment’s real-time processing, we can confirm your order, have it picked and packed, and shipped with one of our trusted partners, in just 24 hours.
There are a wide range of benefits to working with a third-party logistics company that uses the best-quality software systems to manage your warehouses. Other product fulfillment companies may offer a similar set of services, but APS Fulfillment, Inc. goes the extra step. We take great pride that our quality control procedures are state-of-the-art, and we guarantee 24-hour turnaround times for our service orders.