Fulfilment by Amazon – often known as ‘FBA’ – is, in theory, a great idea. You can have all the benefits of Amazon’s humongous reach and logistics, and meet your customer orders.
With huge warehouses stocked with millions of products, it seems like the perfect solution if you want a hassle-free eCommerce solution. But it’s not quite that simple.
Even the most veteran of Amazon sellers and businesses can fall foul of Amazon’s sometimes quirky – others would say sub-par – handling of the service and how the company deals with sellers when issues arise.
If you’re considering selling on Amazon – or perhaps you already do – and want to know about the most common challenges around FBA, read on.
When it comes time actually to fulfil orders and keep customers happy, inventory is the most important resource you have. If you can’t move inventory to the right place at the right time, then your business has a major problem.
Unfortunately, this isn’t an unknown occurrence when it comes to FBA. Many Amazon sellers complain on Amazon’s own forums and other online platforms about inventory delays that run into weeks. What this ultimately means is that sellers simply cannot fulfil the orders they have and that leads to order cancellations and, even worse, potential drops in seller ratings.
Moreover, inventory can get misplaced along Amazon’s colossal supply chain, and while they will more often than not reimburse you for this, it still means orders you aren’t meeting and, overall, lost earnings.
While it might seem like working with a vast global business would do wonders for your customer service and communications, this isn’t always true when it comes to FBA.
Many businesses like the fact that Amazon handles customer service for them because it means they can avoid unhappy customers and focus on the business. But the problem is that you don’t really have any idea how well Amazon is representing your brand – and make no mistake, that’s why they’re doing.
If something goes wrong, you don’t know if Amazon is communicating with the customer in question or how good a job they’re doing. And Amazon is so huge they don’t need to focus on the needs of a single customer, but that’s not true for most businesses using the platform.
Developing good customer service is an integral part of any good business, and every customer is a valuable asset, so it’s not always a good thing to hand over customer service to Amazon.
Developing a Brand
When you use FBA, every product you sell arrives with Amazon’s logos and promotional materials included – not yours.
Developing a brand voice and identity is hard at the best of times, and it’s even harder if you can’t use your products and packaging to do it. A key way around this is with targeted, automated communication that shows your customers you care.
Letting your customers know who you are and what your business is about is key to establishing a relationship and repeat business, so good, automated communication is vital to achieving this goal.
If you need a powerful and efficient automated messaging service for your Amazon business, contact Amazon Business Integration today. We can help you bring down the overheads associated with manual fulfilment processes and help you establish beneficial rapport with customers.