Its amazing how much inventory we have at multiple Amazon warehouses throughout the United States. I understand a product will break here and there, maybe some clumsy kid they hired dropped it, maybe it was crushed by one of the many robots through the facility, or maybe even UPS screwed it up in transit. Amazon has a great system for this (that benefits Amazon), you just have to stay on your toes to keep up to date. When an Item breaks, they simply scan it and check it off as unfulfillable inventory. What this does is secretly take it out of your current inventory and move it to your unfulfillable inventory tab.
Be sure you check that unfulfillable inventory tab frequently! (Off topic – be sure to check the suppressed inventory tab as well. Usually its a very quick fix, and your item will be Live for customer in minutes. Please read up more on suppressed inventory items HERE.) Once you click the Unfulfillable Inventory tab, you will have the option to click the ‘Create Removal Order’ button. This option will have amazon prepare, box and ship the item back to you. This is what we were doing the first 3 to 4 months in business, but this is not the way to go unless its your only option. This is where you fight the BIG GUYS! (Big Guys being Amazon). Let me give you a quick scenario.
You purchased an item for $10.00 that sells for$40.00 on Amazon.
With Amazons wonderful shipping rates, it only cost you $5 bucks to ship this particular product to them. Some Dufus in the warehouse gets your item and drops it (or a customer buys it and drops it and sends it back to Amazon). Amazon scans it and marks it unfulfillable. You check the option to create a removal order to have it shipped back to you. Amazon gives you that nice discount shipping rate of $5 bucks to get it back. You are now $20 bucks into the product. After examining you figure you will either send it back to Amazon as used or sell it on E-Bay in its current condition. (Another Side Note – Its been a shit load of times, we gotten products back and nothing was wrong with it. I seriously can’t tell you how many times we received a product that was suppose to be damaged, opened the box, looked at it….looked at each other…everyone has the WTF look on their faces. So Beware of this as well, it happens A LOT!) After shipping the item out ($5 Bucks) and Amazon or E-Bay fees etc, your now have a very low profit margin -if any at all -for an item you invested a lot of time in.
So what do we do now? We fight the Big Guys! As soon as an item in checked off by 3rd shift Amazon Dufus, we open a ticket with the following dialog. Also if a customer buys your item, returns it to amazon as broken this system can sometime work as well – and its short, simple and to the point. We send the same one every time, and it usually works 80% of the time. Depending on who gets the ticket, the issue is usually resolved right away and Amazon issues a full reimbursement. Paying you the full price of what you had the item listed for, minus their fees. (So in the scenario above, $40 bucks would be credited to the account immediately [minus Amazon fees of course])
I have a question regarding an item we shipped to amazon
ITEM NAME HERE
The item left our Warehouse (Securely and safely packaged) and sent to the Amazon. When the item arrived to your facility it was instantly marked as ‘Damaged by Distributor’. <— ****SIDE NOTE – This can be labeled multiple ways, be sure to insert the proper one******
All items are triple checked, fully inspected and tested (especially if we are listing it in used condition) before prepping and shipping to your facility.
Please advise on how we move forward with this issue. Do I need to contact UPS with a claim or what should we do?
Thank you very much for your time and help with this, have a wonderful day.
Put Your Name Here
Put the ASIN or SKU (optional)Here
By showing concern and also taking the liberty to open a claim with UPS (who Amazon has a contract with). It seems its just easier for them to fully reimburse the seller and keep things moving. Claims and investigations take time, it would cost more money in the long run than just to simply issue the honest seller a refund.
Hope this helps, please let us know how you handle these particular situations in the comments below.