Managing FBA Shipments Just Got Easier

Managing FBA Shipments Just Got Easier

Managing FBA Shipments Just Got Easier

The Problem

Does your operation struggle with how to effectively create, process, and manage, inventory Amazon FBA shipments? How about reconciling shipments and getting the money owed to you? If the answer is yes, then you are not alone. Of the various aspects of selling on Amazon that makes it inherently, and sometimes unnecessarily difficult, there is one aspect that many Amazon sellers agree could be easier. There is one vital piece of many Amazon businesses that is typically archaic. A process that sellers have just accepted as “the way”. That one piece I am referring to is how they manage the shipments they send to FBA in an efficient, scalable manner.

For what seems like the last decade, Amazon has stuck with the same basic workflow to create FBA shipments. Processing it was up to the individual sellers. The issue is this process is absent from any other viable solutions, so sellers have come to expect it as a cost of doing business. All of that is about to change. 

About a year ago, Amazon launched a new “Send to Amazon” workflow feature that many sellers voiced their displeasure with. A workflow that gave them some more options to increase efficiency, but also created the need to supply 3x more data points not previously needed in the old workflow. To the satisfaction of most sellers, they allowed users to continue reverting to the old “Send to Amazon” workflow they were comfortable with. Resorting to this old workflow is what most sellers we spoke with chose to do. Why? Because using this new workflow requires so much more manual information to be provided to Amazon. Around mid-June Amazon announced they are deprecating the old “Send to Amazon” workflow and this new workflow will become “the” workflow as of September 1, 2022. Now, any sellers who are selling more than 20 different products, or who are selling more than a few thousand dollars a week, are scrambling to find an alternative. Whether they are intentionally trying to set the bar higher, or Amazon just doesn’t fully comprehend the “ask” they are making is anyone’s guess. 

The Solution

The good news is that now there is an alternative to this process. An alternative that was developed by 8-figure Amazon sellers. Sellers are now sharing their software solutions with the seller community. An alternative that for them was a vast improvement on the old workflow, and much more efficient than the new one. 

The name of that solution is FILLIFY! An FBA management tool that is shaking up the way sellers thinks about the efficiency of their current workflows and methods for shipping products to FBA. FILLIFY will be a gamified version of processing FBA inventory. Outside of prep and labeling, FILLIFY has taken every manual aspect of this process and automated it for users. Let me walk you through it.

How FILLIFY Can Save You Time & Money

Before we bother digging in, I want to answer one question. That question is “will FILLIFY save me time and money?”. Before we talk about the “how”, here is an analysis conducted by FILLIFY using real-time data from their own operations. They found that if a user is currently paying Amazon to prep and label their products, that potential user can save $20,000 or more, on 20,000 units that are sent to FBA, labor included*. Wow! Talk about shifting the profitability line! Using this software, along with some recommended workflows, could potentially allow a user to sell products that were not previously profitable because of inflated secondary costs. Now let’s see why.

Creating FBA Shipments

The first, and in my opinion, one of the coolest aspects of FILLIFY is that they allow sellers to create shipments with as little as two data points. SKU and quantity. That’s it, and it will stay that way for the foreseeable future. So, if sellers are looking for a way to avoid this new workflow and shipment creation process, this is it! They provide users with a few methods of creating a shipment. They can use one of the 2 templates pictured below, scan products, and build a shipment one product at a time, or they type in each SKU using Add New Product.

Creating FBA shipments

The next aspect of FILLIFY that makes it a great tool for sellers, is that it allows users to select each item in a shipment and work on them individually. Previously, Amazon would make sellers print every label, for every item on a shipment at the same time, on sheets of address labels in an office printer. We’ve all been there, but it is also not efficient. It is hard to track where one product ends and the next begins, leading to mislabeled products and bad customer experiences.

Print Labels At Scale

FILLIFY lets users select a single item on a shipment, and print labels on a roll using a variety of different thermal printers of their choosing. Not only are label costs much cheaper, and ink costs non-existent when using a thermal printer, but printing labels on a roll also allows them to be applied more quickly and efficiently by using an applicator. It may take a few days to get comfortable with using applicators, but just as with any improvement to a workflow, it has to get worse before it can get better. This part alone can drastically increase labeling production! (If you don’t believe me, watch this). Then users can also print FBA box labels that will automatically embed their box content information. That’s right! No more templates in Seller Central….period! Users can print FBA box labels for that one item or select multiple items in a shipment and create a single multi-SKU box label for as many things in that shipment as Amazon will allow. Amazing engineering there by the team at FILLIFY!

Printing labels

After the product and FBA box labels are printed, the item will turn green in FILLIFY indicating its completion. FILLIFY will tell users if a single product or box label is not accounted for (see image above).

Track Production & GAMIFY An Operation

For those sellers who have multiple users in their warehouse, FILLIFY data streams. That means when one user takes an action, all other devices that are running Fillify will update within seconds. No more having different users try to work on the same item. FILLIFY also prints a unique identifier on every label it produces which ties back to that specific user, that worked on that specific product, on that specific shipment (see image below). That way when users have an instance of mislabeling, they can easily identify who may need retraining. Additionally, this is where FILLIFY can gamify a user’s operation by creating a competition to see who can produce the most. The creators of this solution did this in their own operation and improved production further.

Tracking production

Built With Efficiency In Mind

Again, because this is designed by former sellers, it includes some efficiency features that users will not see anywhere else. For instance, it supports more efficient processing of multi-packs or combo-packs. Having to apply a SOLD AS SET sticker on each unit is expected by Amazon. FILLIFY does that. In an ingenious design, FILLIFY has incorporated one of these labels in between each product label. That way a user’s staff can simply double tap each product with both a product and SOLD AS SET label at once from one roll or applicator (see image above). This is a feature that can be toggled on and off for each product. The user decides if, and when they need them (see image below).

Efficiency features

Minimize Incorrect Unfulfillable Inventory

Another cool feature is designed specifically for sellers who sell expiration-dated products. Because Amazon will often designate a product as “UNFULFILLABLE – EXPIRED” when it is not expired, FILLIFY will print the expiration date of an item on its product label as well, to help minimize this problem from occurring. This is also something that can be toggled off or on by the user on each product within FILLIFY. If an item is designated as having an expiration date, then product labels cannot be printed until the user sets the expiration date.

Minimize incorrect unfulfillable inventory

Shipment Reconciliations Made Easy

The last, and most ingenious part of this cloud-based software solution is in the top right corner of the image above and it says, “Upload Signed BOL”. It may seem simple, but the fact is that it will store every document that is vital to the user’s shipment, directly with that shipment, including the BOL and invoices. Ignore the fact that it says BOL, users can store any documents there. Why is this ingenious you might ask? Because it is difficult getting the money back from Amazon that they might owe someone because their inventory has been lost or misplaced. They want sellers to track down the invoices and shipping documents for the missing items on these shipments, months after it has been processed. When it comes time to reconcile that shipment, all the documents are stored in a single place and segmented by shipment. Additionally, when sellers retrieve these documents, they can immediately see if the items showing receiving discrepancies at Amazon, were in fact processed and sent to begin with.

FILLIFY And GETIDA Make Reconciliations Easy

As a bonus in the coming months, someone who is a client of both FILLIFY and GETIDA can elect to give permission for FILLIFY to share shipment documents with GETIDA. This will help to semi-automate FBA shipment reconciliations for users and facilitate faster recovery of possible money owed to them. Something so simple can save users tens of thousands a year in lost inventory recovery without any added effort. This feature alone could pay for both services tenfold.

Final Thoughts

There are more many features with this new FBA tool, I just wanted to highlight the ones that I think will be most impactful for users. Try it for yourself and see! Every aspect of this software has been developed and tweaked over the last few years by actual sellers, in an actual 8-figure operation. This solution and workflow are what their operation evolved into after numerous iterations at different revenue levels. It was the key to solving their scalability problem, and now they want to share it with the seller community. So, if there is a question about how to scale an operation to meet the demands of FBA, FILLIFY may be part of that answer. With the potential to turn a bottleneck into a streamlined process, what does a potential user have to lose? Nothing really. I just cannot wait to see what problems these guys will solve next!