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Topics - Southern Jewel's Fab Finds

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101
From the article: Amazon is already selling some prepared ‘Amazon Meal Kits’

Based just on trademark filings and reported plans, Amazon’s potential entry into the prepared meal kit market has had a significant impact on freshly-IPO’d Blue Apron’s stock price. Now, however, we know that Amazon is actually already testing its own “Amazon Meal Kits,” thanks to a customer in Seattle who has already ordered and prepared one.

For select users able to participate in the trial, there are approximately 17 different meals on offer, and they range in price, starting at $14.99 and going up to $18.99. Chadd compared them favorably to other similar offerings from Blue Apron, HelloFresh, Sun Basket and Home Chef.

This is the clearest indication yet that Amazon intends to offer meal kits as a proper service. The ecommerce giant often spins up a business in a limited market first, as it has done with grocery pick up and delivery service and AmazonFresh prior to this, as well as its cashier-less retail shopping experience.



Footnote: Blue Aprons stock dropped on this announcement.
102
* Amazon Central / 2017 Holiday Selling in Toys & Games on Amazon
« on: July 17, 2017, 10:08:51 AM »
To maintain a great customer experience this holiday season, we have established holiday selling guidelines for the Toys & Games store.

Only sellers who meet the criteria listed below will be eligible to sell in the Toys & Games store from November 17, 2017, through January 5, 2018.

•       Your first sale on Amazon must occur prior to September 15, 2017. The sale does not need to be specific to the Toys & Games store.
•       You must process and ship at least 25 orders from September 1 through October 31, 2017. The orders do not need to be specific to the Toys & Games store.
•       Your pre-fulfillment cancel rate for the period from October 1 through October 31, 2017, must not be greater than 1.75%.
•       Your late shipment rate for the period from October 1 through October 31, 2017, must not be greater than 4%.
•       Your order defect rate must not be greater than 1% short term as of November 1, 2017.

Orders that use Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) will not be subject to the above criteria provided your account is in good standing.

You can find your cancel rate, late shipment rate, and order defect rate in the 'Performance' section of your seller account. If your account does not meet the above criteria, we encourage you to take corrective action now to help ensure your eligibility to sell in the Toys & Games store this holiday season.

Eligibility for selling in the Toys & Games store is determined separately for each marketplace. If you sell in multiple marketplaces, your accounts will be evaluated for each marketplace.

We will provide final notification about your eligibility to sell in the Toys & Games store by November 11, 2017. Beginning November 17, 2017, we will monitor the performance and listings of sellers who are approved to sell in Toys & Games during the holiday season.

Amazon reserves the right to cancel listings, remove selling privileges, and prohibit the sale of specific products to maintain a great customer shopping experience.

Here are some steps you can take to remain eligible to sell in the Toys & Games store throughout the holiday season:

•       Monitor performance metrics and take corrective action when necessary.
•       Use FBA to ship products to customers.
•       Check your orders frequently in the 'Manage Orders' section of your account.
•       Minimize order cancellations; only show inventory for sale that you have available to ship.
•       Ship orders and confirm shipment in a timely manner.
•       Ensure your seller policies are up to date.
•       If you work with outside drop-shippers, solidify their SLA commitments for providing pSLApt shipping confirmation.

Thank you for selling on Amazon.

Regards,
Amazon Services


103
Amazon Multi-Channel Fulfillment U.S. Fee Changes - Effective August 30, 2017

Hello from Fulfillment by Amazon,
 
Multi-Channel Fulfillment (MCF) allows you to have Amazon fulfill orders from your other sales channels with the same fast, efficient delivery that powers Amazon Prime and your FBA business. This includes build-in integrations with website providers such as Shopify and 3dcart. MCF fees in the U.S. will be adjusted to reflect the changing costs of fulfillment and to better align with Fulfillment By Amazon’s fee structure for orders placed on Amazon.com. The new rates will go into effect August 30, 2017. We’re notifying you now to give you time to plan for these changes.
 
We’re introducing the following updates to MCF fees:

Consolidation of Fulfillment Fees: The Order Handling, Pick & Pack, and Weight Handling fees will be consolidated into a single, per-unit Fulfillment Fee.

New Product Size Tiers: The current product size tiers will be segmented into the following tiers: Small Standard-Size, Large Standard-Size, Small Oversize, Medium Oversize, Large Oversize, and Special Oversize to align with Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA). Media will no longer be a separate category.

Discounted Fees for Multi-Unit Orders: We will offer discounted per-unit fulfillment fees based on the number of units in a customer order for the following product size tiers: Small Standard-Size, Large Standard-Size, and Small Oversize. See details
Changes to Unit and Dimensional Weight: We will change the way we calculate unit weight and dimensional weight to match the calculations used by FBA for orders placed on Amazon.com. Unit weight will be calculated by adding individual unit weight to a standard packaging weight and then rounding up to the nearest pound. Dimensional weight will be calculated by taking the unit volume and dividing by 166.

For complete details on the fee changes, including product examples and definitions, visit our 2017 Multi-Channel Fulfillment Fee Changes page.
104
* Amazon Central / Long Term Storage Fees August 2017
« on: July 09, 2017, 09:25:07 AM »
It's coming.
Fees for Long Term Storage:

The next Fulfillment by Amazon inventory cleanup is scheduled for August 15, 2017.

If you file a Removal Order before August 15, 2017 to have this inventory returned to you, you will be unable to send in additional units of these ASINs until January 1, 2018. You can continue to sell through your remaining inventory of these ASINs.

You are responsible for paying the appropriate fees for the return of these units.
105
* Amazon Central / Amazon: Wax Melts and Maintenance Fee = Huh?
« on: June 29, 2017, 10:14:58 AM »
The idiocy.
Johnson Glade Wax Melts Maple Tree Inn, 6 Count, 2.3 ounces

These are wax fragrance melts.
Assembly Options
Expert Assembly $120.29
or Without .00

Grumble, Grumble, Grumble.
I reported to Seller Support, let's see if this goes anywhere.
How much money do you wanna bet I'll get the email that wants the manufacturers blah blah blah?
<rolling eyes>

106
* Amazon Central / Updated FBA Liquidations Program
« on: June 27, 2017, 11:38:01 AM »
Updated FBA Liquidations program

What changed?
Proceeds are automatically applied once your items sell and payment from the liquidators has been received.
It is easy to see which payments are proceeds and how much you received. Liquidated units appear at an order level in the Transaction View section of your Payments report. Payments display as Other with the product detail FBA Liquidation.
Your products will be attractively arranged to help optimize the recovery rate for your inventory.
For additional information, see Liquidating your inventory.
How FBAL works

When creating removal orders in Seller Central, you can choose to liquidate units of certain products in your U.S. inventory.

When you submit a removal order before accruing any long-term or monthly storage fees, you are not charged these fees for the removed inventory.

To learn more, go to Remove inventory from a fulfillment center.
Amazon accepts the highest offer for your liquidated inventory. The value depends on many factors—including, but not limited to—the current secondary market conditions of the units. You receive 90% of the recovered proceeds, the remaining 10% goes to a service fee.  Amazon cannot guarantee a selling price for liquidated inventory.
Amazon may discontinue this program at any time without advance notice.

How do I get started?

From the Manage Inventory page, select the items you want to remove. Go to the Action on selected drop-down list and select Create removal order.

You can also create a removal order from the Inventory Planning page by clicking either the Manage Excess Inventory or the Inventory Age tab.
107
Amazon Assistant: Install Browser Extension & Get

Amazon offers $5 Off Purchases of $25+ when you install the Amazon Assistant Browser Extension.
This offer is valid for Select Accounts only.

Note, offer only applies to first-time customer installation of Amazon Assistant and is limited to one per customer and account

Amazon Assistant helps you make better decisions wherever you shop online.
Order Updates and More
Stay up to date with your deliveries and never miss a deal.
Product Comparisons
Keep an eye out for product comparisons that can save time and money.
Your Universal Registry and Lists
Save products from any website to your Registries or Lists with Assistant's Your Lists tab
Shortcuts
Save time. Assistant gives you shortcuts to popular Amazon destinations right in your browser.

Directions:
Click here to see if you are eligible for this promotion
Install the Amazon Assistant Browser Extension
Open Amazon Assistant (top right hand side of browser address bar)
Go through the tutorial and the $5 off $25+ offer should then be available
Add any physical goods of $25 or more (shipped & sold by Amazon) to cart
Your $5 off Amazon Assistant discount should automatically be applied at checkout
108
* Amazon Central / The final countdown to Prime Day 2017 has begun
« on: June 22, 2017, 09:16:36 PM »
The final countdown to Prime Day has begun
No date yet.
TBA.

Modified to add this update:
According to my Amazon Associates Day email...
Prime Day is July 11th[/color]


Get Ready for Prime Day
The third annual Prime Day will be Tuesday, July 11, 2017 with hundreds of thousands of deals exclusively for Prime members around the world.

*****New this year, members can enjoy 30 hours of shopping starting early at 6pm PT / 9pm ET on Monday, July 10, 2017 – with new deals as often as every five minutes.[/size]
109
* Amazon Central / Amazon Seller Forum Thread: Thank you Amazon?
« on: June 22, 2017, 12:01:02 PM »
Thread: Is this a fair thank you to amazon
Thread is Pretty, Pretty Strong.
111
New tools to Create High-Quality Images for Your Listings
Jun 5, 2017

Achieve high-quality images of your products with a fast, cost-effective process, using our portable photo studio and the Amazon Seller mobile app. Learn more by visiting the Portable Photo Studio.
https://www.amazon.com/gp/browse.html/?node=14725653011&ref=tpi_us_scanc

My attempts at using the photo app have been 100% successful.
I like it!
112
Amazon’s new Alexa-enabled Dash Wand is basically free for Prime subscribers
Video on page showing how Amazon Dash Wand works.
Prime Members buy for $20.00 and receive a $20.00 credit.
113
On Friday night I noted issues as a buyer.
Prime was showing up with shipping prices if it showed up at all.
Item I wanted to buy was around 10.00 and showed a shipping price of $6.67.
The item was Prime.
Should have shown Prime with of course the free shipping next to the item.

At times getting a 503 error.

Found a small discussion going on Seller Forum Thread but it just sellers griping.
Went onto Reddit
https://www.reddit.com/r/amazon/comments/6fvpg2/getting_503_errors_all_over_the_place_but_aws/
https://www.reddit.com/r/amazon/comments/6gct7o/anyone_else_getting_an_error_with_both_the_amazon/

Next day...same issue
https://www.reddit.com/r/amazon/comments/6gcxrx/amazon_down/
https://www.reddit.com/r/amazon/comments/6gcmzv/this_page_isnt_working_wwwamazoncom_redirected/

There are issues this AM...
Wonder what's going on in the background...when this happens usually sellers have some new kinda update, too.

And if buyers can't use the site, then that means we aren't making money.

As someone who'd hoped to get a shipment out today and Seller Central will show unable to access at times and then it won't...this is frustrating.
114
I've not run across this before and now it's happened for a 2nd time using Buyer-Seller Messaging interface.
I had upgraded customer shipping at no additional charge to them from Priority instead of First Class.
I wanted my customer to know to be on the watch out for their package sooner than the original date Amazon stated.
I'm wondering if the default is now set to no messages. Hmmmmmmm.

Your message to a buyer could not be delivered

We were unable to deliver the message you sent for order because the buyer has chosen to opt out of receiving unsolicited messages from sellers.

However, even if a buyer has opted out of unsolicited messages, if you need to send them a message critical to completing his or her order, you can include the word [Important] in the subject of your message or use the Buyer-Seller Messaging interface on Seller Central:

Go to Manage Orders.
Click the buyer’s name in the list, which will take you to Buyer-Seller Messaging.
Select "Additional Information Required" as your subject, write your message, and click Send
If you tried to respond to a buyer and received a message that the buyer has opted out of unsolicited seller messages, please respond to the buyer on the original message thread (instead of starting a new thread) and make sure that his or her original message is included in your reply.

For your reference, the following messages are considered “critical” to complete the order:
Product customization questions
Delivery scheduling
Issues with a shipping address

The following messages are “not critical” to complete the order:
Requests for seller feedback or customer reviews
Order, shipment, or delivery confirmations
Proactive customer service (for example: product manuals, tips for using the product, FAQs, suggestions if something goes wrong)
Out-of-stock or delay notifications and offers of alternate products (please cancel the order instead)
116
* Everything eBay / eBay Changes Seller Policies Summer 2017
« on: May 15, 2017, 10:23:33 AM »
eBay Changes Seller Policies Summer 2017 - eComerce Bytes

Here's the announcement from the eBay Announcement Board:

2017 Summer Seller Update

In the 2017 Summer Seller Update, we're making changes to help you increase your sales by creating a better experience for buyers.
 
Starting in June
Listing Policy Updates

Updates to communications, allowable links, image catalog, and listing best practices to improve site performance for a stronger eBay marketplace.

- Beginning in June 2017, eBay will no longer support active content.

- Buyers and sellers should use eBay Messaging to communicate. Listings and other eBay pages can no longer contain contact information such as email, phone numbers, and social media links effective September 2017

- Starting in September  2017, we will update our links policy to limit the types of links and domains permitted in listings.
 
Coming this summer
Returns

We're increasing exposure of free 30-day and 60-day returns to buyers starting this summer. New opportunities will include:

- Giving buyers options to search for and filter free 30-day and 60-day returns.

- Highlighting free returns policies when buyers visit your listings.

- eBay marketing campaigns that feature the best returns policies.
 
Effective August 1, 2017
International Performance Standards

Starting August 1, 2017, only transactions with buyers in the countries included in the Global region (countries outside the United States, United Kingdom, and Germany) will count toward your seller performance rating in the Global region.
 
Beginning June 13, 2017
Category and Classification

We will release category, item specifics, and catalog updates starting on June 13, 2017. Changes will include additions, removals, and renames in several eBay categories.
 
117
I knew the required 2 step verification would be coming soon...
Figured closer to the before holiday rush.
I guess it's better in the slower season to have us all update our accounts.

Two-step verification is your best protection against unauthorized use of your account. Amazon strongly recommends that you enable it now.
After June 30, your access to Seller Central will be disabled if you have not enrolled.
118
Reminder: Amazon Item Guidelines for Books in New Condition

May 8, 2017
Starting in March, eligible Books sellers are now able to compete for the Buy Box for Books in New condition. With this change, we would like to share an important reminder about the requirements for listing Books in New condition on the Amazon Marketplace.
 
In addition to the General Condition Guidelines, the following guidelines apply for Books listed as New condition:
 
New: A brand-new, unused, unread copy in perfect condition. The dust cover and original protective wrapping, if any, is intact. All supplementary materials are included and all access codes for electronic material, if applicable, are valid and/or in working condition.
 
Books with markings of any kind on the cover or pages, books marked as “Bargain” or “Remainder,” or with any other labels attached, may not be listed as New condition.  Additionally, Books listings must exactly match the item described, including edition/version, binding type, and country of origin.
 
Sellers who list Books in New Condition that do not meet these guidelines may have their offer removed, and could face additional action for repeated violations, including account suspension or termination.
119
Amazon Use Buyer-Seller Messaging to send important order information

May 10, 2017
Buyer-Seller Messaging allows buyers to opt out of receiving unsolicited, non-critical messages from sellers. If you need to send a buyer a message that is necessary to complete their order, include the word [Important] in brackets in the subject line of the message sent via email. You can also use the Buyer-Seller Messaging interface in Seller Central:
Go to Manage Orders.
Click the buyer’s name in the list to go to Buyer-Seller Messaging.
Select "Additional Information Required" as your subject, write your message, and click Send. 
The following messages are considered critical to complete a buyer's order:
Product customization questions
Delivery scheduling
Issues with a shipping address
The following messages are not critical to complete an order:
Requests for seller feedback or customer reviews.
Order, shipment, delivery or refund confirmations. Amazon already sends these emails.
Proactive customer service. For example, product manuals, tips for using the product, answers to frequently asked questions, suggestions if something goes wrong.
Out-of-stock or delay notifications and offers of alternative products. Please cancel the order instead.
120
* Amazon Central / Amazon "Sold, ship now" email format changes
« on: May 12, 2017, 11:40:47 AM »
Amazon "Sold, ship now" email format changes

May 10, 2017
Starting May 17, “Sold, ship now” emails are changing to HTML from text-based emails. For more information on enabling your “Sold, ship now” emails
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