Fulfilled by Amazon often feels like a giant black box. A black box that I put something in and hope that money comes out the other end. What is going on in the box I have no idea. This weekend I noticed that an iPad I had sent Amazon was not listed. I went online to their chat feature and asked them what was going on. The CSR could not answer the question and sent it up a level. She told me to expect a response within 48 hours.
I ended up getting a response that same day and here is what the email said.
We received your request to investigate items missing from shipment:XXXXXX. Because we are not able to locate the missing items, we have initiated a reimbursement amount:513.18 USD on your behalf. Please note that reimbursement may include replacing missing items with items with the same FNSKU.
If we are able to locate the missing items, or locate items with the same FNSKU in the same condition, within 48 hours of sending this e-mail, those items will be returned to your inventory in lieu of reimbursement. If we are unable to find the items, a credit will post to your account in the next five (5) business days.
This was the first time that Amazon had lost one of my shipments. My first reaction upon receiving this email was cool, they are giving my $513. That is about $2 more than what I usually net for an iPad. However, it looks like what ended up replacing the iPad. That or they actually found it. Within 4 hours after receiving this email I had an order pending for the iPad they had lost. Either way, I am happy with the resolution.
All of this got me thinking. I looked online and saw that Amazon has over 200 million products for sale on its website. In 2014 there were 2 BILLION, that’s right BILLION products purchased from Amazon Marketplace Sellers. How the hell does Amazon even keep track of all that stuff? Considering that kind of volume, FBA is incredible.
I am amazed they don’t lose everything I send. The IT must be off the charts. I have been reselling now for 3 months. I’ve probably sent Amazon a dozen iPads. Frankly. I am surprised they have not lost more. Plus, the fact that there was virtually no delay between the response from FBA and the issue being solved speaks to how well run the system is.
Maybe I have been lucky. I have certainly read the frustrations of others in dealing with FBA. So far so good for me. Again, I just think of it as a black box, input shipment output cash.