Amazon Gives Break to SFP Merchants

Amazon seller fulfilled prime logo feature

Amazon is giving merchants using its Seller Fulfilled Prime a break in terms of service level commitments, removing a plan to have them meet one- and two-day shipping requirements, in light of ongoing challenges on speedy delivery from carriers, CNBC reported.

Merchants using SFP are required to pack and ship orders themselves, unlike Fulfilled By Amazon (FBA) where the ecommerce giant handles all the logistics, in order to display the coveted Prime badge on their listings.

Amazon told SFP merchants this week that the requirements set to go into effect in February were being relaxed, including requirements on one- and two-day delivery, CNBC reported and Amazon confirmed.

The company is now telling the merchants they have to require one- or two-day delivery for just 55% of those who view their listings. As of June, that number will be increased to 70%. As of Feb. 1, they will still be required to handle order fulfillment on weekends and provide nationwide delivery coverage.

Last November, a decline in some transit times led Amazon to restrict use of FedEx Ground and Home Delivery for fulfilling SFP orders, according to the Memphis Commercial Appeal, citing an email to shippers from Amazon.

FedEx acknowledged the delays, saying longer transit times in certain lanes “will provide increased flexibility allowing us to optimize the use of our capacity and best serve the needs of all of our customers during this busy time.” The company added shippers could still use Ground and Home Delivery “if the Prime badge isn’t present.”

Many sellers using FBA had a hard time of it in 2020, as prioritization of space in FBA facilities for essential goods locked them out in the early days of the pandemic. Then in September, they faced suspension of their FBA accounts over late shipments, even if it was a carrier issue and no fault of their own.

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