Amazon is the world’s largest e-commerce marketplace, and it shows no signs of slowing down. As an e-commerce merchant, it can be beneficial to expand your marketplace in order to co-opt the millions of prospective customers using Amazon on a daily basis. In particular, sellers with Prime-eligible products enjoy access to a members-only club with more than 100 million subscribers.
If you’re one of the many wanting to take advantage of Amazon’s massive subscriber base, you can choose between two ways of selling Prime-eligible products:
- Fulfilled by Amazon (or “FBA”)
- Seller Fulfilled Prime
Both options have their own unique pros and cons.
The former, FBA, can be more convenient, though you’ll pay significant handling fees for Amazon to take care of the fulfillment process for you. Whereas, Seller Fulfilled Prime, is far more cost-effective, allowing you to handle the logistics on your own so that you can take home a bigger piece of the pie. The main issue merchants face with Seller Fulfilled Prime is meeting and maintaining the strict fulfillment standards of Amazon’s 2-day Prime delivery.
Luckily we have some outstanding news that makes this compliance issue less of a logistical headache: ShipEngine just launched an integration for Amazon Buy Shipping. This new feature allows users to print labels that meet Seller Fulfilled Prime standards—allowing you to efficiently fulfill orders that come in through the world’s largest marketplace.
Learn more about Seller Fulfilled Prime and how to use ShipEngine to print labels that meet Amazon’s standards, below.
What is Seller Fulfilled Prime?
By now it’s no secret, Amazon Prime is a membership program that provides subscribers a wealth of benefits in exchange for a $119 yearly fee. The flagship benefit of being an Amazon Prime member is free 2-day shipping on all Prime-eligible products—a guarantee that has arguably changed the landscape of e-commerce
Sellers who opt for “Fulfilled by Amazon” actually box up their products and ship them to an Amazon warehouse, where they sit until sold. Once an order is made online, Amazon is able to fulfill the order directly (hence the name, “Fulfilled by Amazon”) and ensure a 2-day delivery window.
On the other hand, merchants choosing “Seller Fulfilled Prime” are responsible for the entire logistics and fulfillment process. And as a result, they must use pre-approved shipping services that meet Amazon’s Prime guarantee. Luckily, Amazon has made compliance a little easier by offering their built-in Amazon Buy Shipping tool, which can be accessed through either the Seller Central portal or Merchant Fulfillment API and allows sellers to print shipping labels for any online order.
The best part about using Amazon Buy Shipping for Seller Fulfilled Prime is that every delivery is guaranteed. While you can opt to print labels from a different source or directly through a carrier, if your order arrives outside the 2-day window, Amazon charges you a late fee. All labels printed through Amazon Buy Shipping do not incur a fee—even if the order arrives late.
Now that ShipEngine has launched an Amazon Buy Shipping integration, users can easily print labels that meet Seller Fulfilled Prime standards—just like they would print labels from any of our other 30+ integrated carriers. Currently, this feature only allows for printing Amazon Buy Shipping labels for Amazon orders, not for orders made through other channels.
How Does Seller Fulfilled Prime Work Through ShipEngine?
When you choose ShipEngine as your shipping API, you can quickly connect your ShipEngine dashboard to new or existing accounts from carriers like the United States Postal Service, UPS, FedEx, DHL and many others. With a few simple steps, you can now also sync ShipEngine with an existing Amazon Buy Shipping account.
For those who do not have an Amazon Buy Shipping account set up, you will first need to sign up for the waitlist so you can be approved by Amazon and assigned a merchant ID.
Once you have been approved and added carriers within your account, the documentation on our Partners site outlines how to connect Amazon Buy Shipping to your ShipEngine dashboard so you can get started shopping rates and buying labels. If you do not have access to our Partners site, our sales team would be happy to get you set up.
Is Seller Fulfilled Prime Worth It?
With the right shipping platform in place, Amazon’s Seller Fulfilled Prime can be a lucrative business decision. By choosing Seller Fulfilled Prime over FBA, you’re able to maintain control throughout the fulfillment process and save capital in the long run by eliminating FBA-related handling fees.
Still looking for the right platform? With ShipEngine, you can establish a workflow that helps you take advantage of Amazon’s Seller Fulfilled Prime and its many benefits, while also enabling you to shop rates, validate addresses, print labels, and track shipments on orders from non-Amazon channels.
Both Amazon’s Seller Fulfilled Prime program and ShipEngine offer e-commerce merchants features and benefits that help accelerate growth. With Seller Fulfilled Prime, you’re able to access the massive number of buyers who are using the Amazon marketplace. And, with ShipEngine, you’re able to solve shipping by saving time and money during the fulfillment process.
Ready to Print Seller Fulfilled Prime Labels Through ShipEngine?
If you’re already taking advantage of Seller Fulfilled Prime, ShipEngine’s Amazon Buy Shipping integration can streamline your fulfillment process and make shipping more time- and cost-effective. If you’re not taking advantage of Seller Fulfilled Prime yet, ShipEngine makes it easy to start fast and scale quickly.
So what are you waiting for? Get your free ShipEngine API key and start exploring what our platform can do for your e-commerce business. Contact our sales team for Amazon Buy Shipping pricing information.
** UPDATE **
As of December 18, 2019, FedEx Ground® and FedEx Home® services are no longer supported for the fulfillment of Amazon Prime® shipments—including those delivered through Seller-Fulfilled Prime. This decision does not affect those using FedEx Express® to fulfill Amazon orders.