Amazon Seller Flex, also known as “Multi-Seller Flex” was launched in India as an alternative to FBA to help sellers who live in small towns to make their products available for Prime. This of course grants them better control over their fulfillment process.
In this article, we’ll show you how Seller Flex works so you can decide whether you should give this exclusive program a try.
Scroll down to learn more!
How The Amazon Seller Flex Program Works
As we mentioned at the beginning of this article, Amazon Seller Flex was created with the goal of making the delivery process more smoothly by helping sellers keep track of their inventory.
Amazon Seller Flex gives you better control over management of stocks, package and process orders. The program has a simple baseline as to how it works: Amazon picks up products from 3P merchant warehouses and delivers the goods to customers.
The difference in fulfillment is that Amazon can see which warehouse is closer to the client who made the purchase. This way you can assure a next day or two-day delivery.
It is true that you’ll have to keep a close eye to how the program is working for you. If mishandled, it may mean important losses for your business.
How to Join the Amazon Seller Flex Program
Since this is an exclusive program, you can join by invitation from Amazon only.
However, keep in mind that if you haven’t received an invitation, it doesn’t mean you won’t. The program is fairly new and there are a couple of criteria and strategies to consider in order to be eligible.
In addition, sellers must meet the following requirements to be part of this program:
- Your warehouse must be among the list of specific locations where the program applies. These will continue to expand as the program continues to grow.
- You must prove that your sales are above 1000 units and over .6 million per month
- Seller rating should be above 90%
All these numbers are merely estimates and do not guarantee getting an invitation, but having those numbers definitely helps.
You can always contact Amazon Flex support to learn why you are falling short.
If your numbers are close to the ones above and you still haven’t received an invitation to join the Amazon Seller Flex Program, you can get in touch with their team via email: [email protected] or phone call: (877) 212-6150 or (888) 281-6901.
You can also get insights on how to join and if it’s worth it by asking other sellers about their experience with the program.
Seller Flex Eligibility
Warehouse owners or Amazon merchants need to comply with certain requirements if they want to participate in the Seller Flex program.
Producers will need to get an approval and make sure they have the following infrastructure:
- Amazon packing supplies provided by Amazon
- Packing station area
- A minimum staff of six people in the warehouse
- UPS Inverter or power backup
- Two computers (Windows 7 or above, and a minimum of 2GB RAM)
- Two bar code scanners
- 2 Internet connections
- 3 printers: 1 for Shipping label, 1 for Gift labels, and another one for PDF invoice files.
- Labeled racks and bins to keep products organized
Seller Flex Pros
The Seller Flex program does come with a wide range of benefits for sellers who decide to join:
- Raise the level of trust in your client base by getting the FBA tag.
- You don’t need to send your goods to Amazon (this decreases transportation costs).
- Keep a better control of your inventory management.
- If you have inventory that’s not moving too much, you don’t have to bring the items back from an FBA warehouse. So, you save the costs of moving that inventory.
- Depending on your location, you’ll be able to offer customers next-day or two-day delivery.
- Amazon makes sure you get the right training so you can take the most advantage of the program.
- SMBs can access and serve customers at a global scale.
There are no extra costs if you decide to add or remove products in FBA warehouses.
Pus, ATS is guaranteed to pick up packages.
Seller Flex Cons
If you decide to join the program, there are a couple of issues that might make you think twice about joining:
- You’ll need to ensure a dedicated workforce to manage sales peaks because of seasonal sales.
- Having a limited portfolio means that you most likely will need more resources to be able to manage. In this case, Amazon Flex may not be as beneficial to you.
- Your product pricing can help you to calculate your profits. Do the math and check if Amazon Seller Flex can actually help you save money or not.
Is Amazon Seller Flex a Good Fulfillment Option?
With this program, Amazon is able to be part of third-party sellers’ operations that are still not part of the FBA program.
It can also continue to improve its FBA program by getting insights as to why some sellers prefer not to use it.
Think of Amazon Seller Flex as the FBA option for merchants who are not currently using the program.
Additionally, Amazon can have a wider range of products to ship customers with Prime delivery times, without necessarily being a Prime product. This is a significant competitive advantage over other ecommerce sellers in the US.
Seller Flex is helping the retail giant expand and strengthen their logistics services in the US to become less and less dependent on 3P logistics partners.
Every time a product is shipped by a logistics partner through the Amazon Seller Flex Program, the price for shipping is lower. Seller Flex includes a negotiating tool to get better deals with FedEx and UPS, depending on the volume and scale.
- Amazon Seller Flex works as yet another data point to help Amazon get insights from sellers who are still not part of the FBA program. Thanks to the delivery data and the performance standards of the business using Seller Flex, Amazon can learn the impact these sellers would have if they decided to expand the Flex program.
- Amazon can be able to source the products that are closer to your customer, thus expanding their logistic services.
Is Amazon Seller Flex Program a Good Option for Your Business?
First of all, you have to make sure that your ecommerce brand complies with Amazon’s requirements to be able to be invited to join.
While it is true that the program could mean a great opportunity if you’re not signed up to the FBA program, it does have a learning curve, which is why Amazon offers training and all the necessary support to facilitate things for sellers.
Brands can decide to give Seller Flex a try and test if their logistics and delivery operations work better for a period of time. Consider that you also have the responsibility of complying with the operation standards. If you do not commit to your side of the business you might end up having to spend more on logistics and delivery or even get your account suspended.
Source: BuyBox Experts
As you can see, the Amazon Seller Flex program was created to provide a better service to those sellers in India who are still not using Fulfillment by Amazon with their logistics and delivery operations. If used properly, you can raise your sales by offering quicker delivery times and saving money by not moving around inventory that doesn’t sell much.
However, you still need to be aware about the risks of joining the program without taking the time to calculate your budget and learning how to use it to your advantage.