The Amazon Shift: What’s Really Happening?

No, that wasn’t an earthquake you felt, it was the rumored Amazon shift in their platform. You may have noticed the buzz around vendors not receiving their POs (Purchase Orders) and we did too. The big question is: Has Amazon officially moved towards a single platform method?

Not sure what we’re talking about? For some background on Amazon selling check out our Vendor Central vs. Seller Central blog to gain some insights and further understand all the hype.

Being a Certified Amazon Global Service Provider, our experts at Cart Logic are constantly researching and updating our services that properly reflect Amazon policies. We’ve been hard at work comparing the facts vs. the rumors and here’s everything we compiled thus far:

What We Know:

  • This week certain Vendor Central sellers have not received their usual PO’s (Purchase Orders)
    • Some of these sellers received notifications that Amazon believes they would be a better fit for Seller Central
    • Other notifications stated their account was being paused for review
    • A small amount of Vendor Central sellers were told of a technical glitch in Amazon, but have not heard anything further
  • Amazon does not (and has never) guaranteed Purchase Orders (POs)
  • Some messages suggested that the supplier should not expect future purchase orders to be placed at all.

Here’s a sampling of some of the messages our clients received:

Please be informed that at this time, we are not placing any purchase orders on your products.  To preserve the customer experience, the featured offer will be disabled when the product is out of stock. We will notify you if we choose to place any future purchase orders.

I would like to inform you that our internal team have reviewed your business with Amazon and strongly believes that Amazon customers would be better served if your products were made available through Seller Central.  As we are constantly looking for ways to improve the customer experience we recommend you to setup Seller account to continue your business with Amazon.”

The Rumors We’ve Been Asked About

  • Is Amazon switching to a single platform?
    • Unfortunately, Amazon has not confirmed anything regarding this rumored shift.  But this could be the first step in Amazon merging its two distinct selling platforms: Vendor Central (the Purchase Order based system) and the Seller Central marketplace. Last year we first started to hear about the rumored One Vendor Internal System that would merge Seller Central and Vendor Central systems together.

  • Is this a permanent shift?
    • There are no answers on whether this is a temporary issue or a permanent direction. However, in the event that this is a permanent shift and you are now looking at moving your business to Seller Central, here’s what you should know: Adopting Seller Central is not hard but it’s still a different platform. Contact us with concerns you may have and we’d be happy to answer any questions.
  • Are these decisions based on revenue benchmarks? Product Categories?
    • As Amazon has not publicly acknowledged an official shift, there is only speculation at this time as to what factors may have lead to some sellers receiving PO’s and others not.

What This Means for Your Business:

From checking in with our current clients we’ve given the following advice on next steps to for their Amazon strategy:

  • Begin to rethink your overall D2C strategy
    • If Amazon is in control of your eCommerce success it may be time to rethink your D2C strategy. There are many ways to do this whether it be your own eCommerce website or an Amazon strategy. Luckily, we’re experts in D2C, so if you’re not sure where to start, contact us today.
  • Consider the benefits of switching to Seller Central
  • Develop a plan to execute a painless transition from Vendor to Seller Central without a disruption in your revenue stream
    • No, it’s not impossible. Our experts specialize in this sort of thing and have done it for countless clients.
  • Consider how vulnerable your business is with changes to Amazon policies
    • A backup plan is never a bad idea. Use this rumored shift to start getting your ducks in a row and have available options if/when Amazon changes affect your selling strategy.

If you’re unsure where your business stands in the midst of Amazon madness, contact Cart Logic today and let us help you craft a strategy that protects your brand from the current and future changes in the eCommerce world.

Let’s discuss how to make your Amazon Channel and Digital Marketing the best it can be.