Amazon is restricting incoming inventory to specific ‘necessity’ categories

By Matt Collins Article may include affiliate links

Amazon has announced that it is “prioritizing” incoming inventory deliveries of certain products such as household necessities and medical supplies during the coronavirus outbreak.

This essentially means that the company will no longer accept incoming inventory shipments that fall into six categories: Baby products, health and household (including personal care appliances), beauty and personal care, grocery, industrial and scientific and pet supplies.

It’s important to note that customers will still be able to order any other products Amazon sells (or sells on behalf of others), but they will be limited to purchasing the stock Amazon currently has in its warehouse — for sellers using the company’s fulfillment services — or, in the case of sellers who do their own fulfillment for orders placed on the marketplace, as much as they can fulfill.

The issue could also affect sellers who don’t sell directly on Amazon but use its Fulfillment By Amazon service to sell on other platforms such as Shopify, BigCommerce or other platforms.

Amazon previously issued guidance that due to increased online shopping, delivery windows are also being pushed out, even for Prime customers used to receiving same, one or two day shipping.

The move will presumably open up space in Amazon warehouses for more of the types of products that are in big demand during coronavirus worries. It is also likely designed to able the company to put more resources into processing, stocking and fulfilling orders of key items.

As of now, the policy will run through April 5, 2020, but could be extended.

Business Insider reported that large vendors reported the company stopped placing purchase orders for many items like it normally does on Mondays.

Many sellers are reporting big drops in sales of items outside of these categories, though most vendors keep one to two months worth of inventory in Amazon warehouses.

Below is the email Amazon sent to its Fulfillment By Amazon customers:

Hello from Fulfillment by Amazon,

We are closely monitoring the developments of COVID-19 and its impact on our customers, selling partners, and employees.

We are seeing increased online shopping, and as a result some products such as household staples and medical supplies are out of stock. With this in mind, we are temporarily prioritizing household staples, medical supplies, and other high-demand products coming into our fulfillment centers so that we can more quickly receive, restock, and deliver these products to customers.

For products other than these, we have temporarily disabled shipment creation. We are taking a similar approach with retail vendors.

This will be in effect today through April 5, 2020, and we will let you know once we resume regular operations. Shipments created before today will be received at fulfillment centers.

You can learn more about this on this Help page. Please note that Selling Partner Support does not have further guidance.

We understand this is a change to your business, and we did not take this decision lightly. We are working around the clock to increase capacity and yesterday announced that we are opening 100,000 new full- and part-time positions in our fulfillment centers across the US.

We appreciate your understanding as we prioritize the above products for our customers.

Thank you for your patience, and for participating in FBA.