Amazon has been a game-changer in the world of ecommerce since its inception.
It’s fulfilment services (Fulfilment by Amazon, also known as FBA) have enabled retailers to provide their customers with efficient and speedy delivery options. This is why, 86% of sellers choose FBA as their preferred fulfilment method, according to the report The State of the Amazon Seller 2023.
As a result, free and fast deliveries of online orders have become a standard from an online shopper’s point of view. However, as Amazon’s fulfilment costs continue to rise and its restrictions become stricter, it’s essential for sellers to rethink their fulfilment setup and to become less dependent on the ecommerce giant.
In fact, while FBA provides attractive advantages to retailers, it’s also worth noting that Amazon imposes strict regulations for inventory levels, does not allow the usage of own packaging material and does not disclose customer data.
One solution that can help sellers gain better control of the fulfilment process is switching to Fulfilment by Merchant (FBM). FBM is a program where sellers handle their own storage, packaging, shipping and returns management instead of relying on Amazon’s fulfilment centres. It allows sellers to tailor-make their fulfilment solutions and customise packaging to their preferences.
By using FBM, merchants can regain control of their fulfilment process and use this as an opportunity to build a strong brand. By using customised packaging solutions, to reflect their brand identity, businesses can help improve brand recognition and customer loyalty in order to increase their customer-lifetime-value.
Moreover, Fulfilment by Merchant allows retailers to get better access to customer data, which can help them make informed decisions about their business strategies.
Another benefit of FBM is that merchants become more independent from Amazon, giving them better control over their inventory management strategy.
It also means that they can maintain better control over their inventory levels, reducing the risk of running out of stock and having less hassle dealing with pre-FBA orders to restock their inventory in an Amazon warehouse.
Moreover, the SKUs stored in the warehouse can be used to fulfil orders coming from various marketplaces and online channels, therefore reducing the complexity in their operations.
Fulfilment by Merchant can be done directly by the ecommerce seller who takes care of all logistics-related services. This means that merchants need to take care of the complete warehouse operations – from renting a facility to hiring workforce and setting up the right tech infrastructure.
However, another possible solution for FBM, that is less complex than owning the process, is outsourcing the fulfilment to a Third-Party-Logistics Provider like Byrd.
The ecommerce logistics scale-up offers tailor-made fulfilment solutions that can be customised to meet the specific needs of retailers, enabling them to optimise their post purchase experience. Byrd’s fulfilment centre in the United Kingdom is strategically located in Greater London, providing access to the best transport links in the country and in proximity to Heathrow Airport.
The warehouse can handle LQ (limited quantity, organic certification including a partnership with the Soil Association, therefore meeting the requirements of various product types that merchants can sell online.
Once online orders have been processed in the warehouse, they are shipped via trusted carriers such as DPD and/or Royal Mail to online shoppers worldwide.
On top of that, Byrd offers access to a vast European Fulfilment Network and just launched its Seller Fulfilled Prime solution in Germany, which combines all the benefits from FBM with the advantages of having a prime badge for specific SKUs. This enables sellers to increase their visibility on Amazon to attract even more customers.
In conclusion, Amazon sellers need to rethink their fulfilment setup in the context of increasing Amazon fulfilment costs and the changing e-commerce macro-environment. By using Byrd’s FBM and SFP services, retailers can regain control of their fulfilment operations to benefit from more flexibility while keeping up their service-level. This puts merchants into a position, in which they can build a strong brand, increase customer lifetime value and profitability.
by Catherine Arnold – UK country manager at byrd