HUGE issues for shoe sellers!!!

I learned something new this past week (kudos to Rachel Greer–former Amazonian and Founder of Cascadia Seller Solutions).

If you are a shoe seller or clothing seller and you turn off automated repackaging (which you absolutely should),

you are not doing enough to protect yourself from having used or defective product returned by a buyer and then sold to another buyer.

This process of resale is a certain path to incurring Used Sold as New, Not As Described, and Inauthentic complaints on a regular basis.

All the original buyer has to do is say the product was new and return it because of ____________.  Amazon receives the product back at the fulfillment center, “inspects” it, gives it the thumb’s up, and places it back in to your inventory for sale if they “think” it is new.  And, of course, they don’t make mistakes, right?  Automated repackaging is simply an Amazon service to provide repackaging (for a fee) for an item if there was some sort of issue with the original packaging.  If the original packaging is still intact, then no repackaging is needed.  That step would be skipped and it would just be returned to your inventory for sale as new.

There are 4 steps I would recommend:

1) Use an automated feedback request service to protect your account.  Services like Feedback Genius have the flexibility to offer customer service to buyers proactively as opposed to only requesting feedback.

I like to couple this with, 2) product inserts which are fully TOS compliant and help get customers to come to you directly with their concerns or requests for returns.

Then, 3) fix your store contact information–your profile, specifically–to make it easier for buyers to contact you.

Finally, 4) change your return settings in Seller Central.  Set your Email to receive return request emails.  REMOVE Auto-authorized returns.  You can override certain sku’s to make them automated.  For shoes and clothing and other items which are frequently returned, you want to receive them back and inspect them first BEFORE they go out to another buyer.

Currently, there is no way for sellers to automatically intercept or control the returns process for FBA.  There should be a button that allows you to control this by at least giving you the ability to choose to have all FBA returns sent to Unfulfillable instead of Sellable.  Then, you could have those items (shoes or otherwise, less the asin’s you exclude), shipped back to you or a 3PL for inspection.  For now, the best you can do is everything you can to have the buyer reach out to you if there is an issue.  If this the second time around for a shipment and this second buyer gets the Used item that the first buyer returned, you are in jeopardy.  And, don’t assume you are off the hook simply because you are commingling.