Are You Violating Amazon’s Drop Shipping Policy?
A large share of Amazon Sellers use drop shipping as their preferred method of fulfillment. While this trend of relying on drop shipping has remained unchanged over the past years, the number of Amazon Account Suspensions (directly or indirectly) caused by drop shipping has risen exponentially. Given that we at Appeal Wizards work with many Amazon Sellers who are blindsided by these types of Account Suspensions, we decided to explain why drop shipping is the common link in many of these surprising account deactivations. If you are facing an Amazon Account Suspension and you believe drop shipping might be the cause, we can help – reach out to us here!
While it will not be a shock to any e-commerce frequenter that many Amazon Sellers use drop shipping, it tends to surprise even most Amazon Sellers themselves that their account is at risk of a suspension because of it. The reason for this is because most Amazon Sellers fall into the trap of not following the Amazon Drop Shipping Policy to a tee. For those unfamiliar with this policy, be sure to give it a close read on Seller Central after reading this.
Those familiar with the policy may be thinking “…but Amazon’s Drop Shipping Policy says that it is an acceptable method of fulfillment”. This is true. But this line of thinking also causes many Sellers to fall victim to the ‘surprise’ suspension. What’s particularly tricky about this policy is that it also states Sellers must comply with all other requirements of the Amazon Business Agreement. So, let’s say that your drop shipper has a shipment delay and the order is not fulfilled until after the allotted Amazon timeframe – well you are now officially violating the Business Agreement, and therefore violating the Amazon Drop Shipping Policy. Perhaps your supplier started sending coupons along with their shipments that have now unexpectedly arrived in your packages – you are now violating the Seller Code of Conduct and there violating the, you guessed it, Amazon Drop Shipping Policy.
The moral of the story is that drop shipping is a very easy way to put your Amazon Seller Account on a fast track to suspension because even one simple oversight could be the catalyst . These Account Suspensions are as likely to occur for a brand new seller unaware of the nuanced rule differences between Ebay and Amazon as they are for the most experienced Seller who has been drop shipping for years only to become overly reliant on his/her supplier to perform and to do so without making any minor changes to quality or stock piles.
These types of suspensions will not only cost you time, money, and potentially your Amazon Seller Account altogether like nearly all other suspensions, but violating the Amazon Drop Shipping Policy in particular will require many Sellers to implement a business plan overhaul before being allowed to sell again. It may be best to avoid being in this situation by proactively implementing a new strategy to replace this drop shipping dependency by, for example, keeping inventory on hand to ship yourself or by utilizing Fulfillment By Amazon (FBA) to keep the onus on Amazon (‘their’ shipping mistake not ‘yours’). But, if you are currently drop shipping and are unable to change this business model, even after a detrimental suspension, reach out to our team and we can see how we can help.
If you are lucky enough to be reading this without a suspension, truly consider the risks of drop shipping. Without the perfect supplier and a militant approach to analyzing your Account Health metrics, drop shipping may prove to be too much of a liability as a policy violation becomes a near inevitability over the course of a one or two year run. We understand that some Amazon Sellers can’t afford to warehouse inventory or aren’t comfortable doing their own shipping, and in those cases, remember to be cautious, never become complacent with your supplier, and consider seeking experts to monitor your account for any vulnerabilities – we offer an Account Monitoring service that you can learn more about here. And if you are facing an account suspension due to drop shipping, or any other matter, and find yourself paralyzed by the many paths forward, we can help! Reach out to us at https://www.appealwizards.com/contact-us/.