How to Create a Removal Order on Fulfillment by Amazon using the new "Recommended Removal" Tool
In order to avoid long-term storage fees that are assessed when an item has been in the FBA warehouse for over 365 days or is unfulfillable, here is a simple tutorial for how to create a removal order. Please note that this post is rather time sensitive, as the elimination of removal fees by Amazon is only supposed to be applicable until August 15th, 2011.
(For Amazon's instructions for how to complete this process for Unfulfillable Inventory from your "Inventory Amazon Fulfills" page, please visit this page. I think that you will find that completing a removal order using the steps below is a much easier and simpler process, and also kills two birds with one stone.)
1. Login to your Amazon Seller Account
2. Under "Reports" click on "Fulfillment," then under "Inventory" (right-hand side) click on "Recommended Removal."
3. Click on "Generate Report" under the "View Online" tab. You can also choose to download and print a file of all your listings recommended for approval. I am completing this task from a local coffee shop and do not have access to a printer, so have decided to view the listings online in a separate tab on my browser.
4. Click on "Begin Removal Process."
5. Decide whether you would like the items disposed of, which Amazon is currently doing at no charge, or shipped back to you, which will be done for the low cost of .20 per unit (.40 for oversized units), including shipping. If you are having the items returned, fill out the address info at the top of the page. I also clicked the box at the bottom to make this the default return address for all of my removal shipments.
6. Scroll down to review your listings, making sure to click "Delete" for any items you would like to remain active. Click "Continue" at the bottom of the page. I went ahead and removed all 110 of my items nearing the 365 day mark (including the 8 items marked as unfulfillable). The total cost to have all the items returned to me? $22. The total long-term storage costs I would have incurred had all of the items hit the 365 day mark? $112, which is based on cubic footage. Sure, these items will no longer be available for sale on Amazon, but I pledged from the beginning of my FBA experiment (which has been an absolute success) that I would not stock stale inventory with high sales rankings.
7. Review your "Order Summary" and verify your shipping address, paying close attention to the "Estimated Fees" boilerplate:
You will be charged the per unit pick and pack fee shown on the rate card, but we are currently waiving weight fees for removals. Removals can take 10 to 14 business days to pick, pack and ship. You will be billed within 45 days of the removal and it will appear as a Miscellaneous Adjustment. We will send a reminder to you before your account is charged.
I would assume that the waiving of removal fees is a temporary measure, and my understanding from the recent email I received is that "through August 15th, the per-unit fee to have inventory over 270 days old returned to you is $0.20 per-Unit including shipping ($0.40 including shipping for Oversize Units), or you can have us dispose of the inventory Units for no charge."
8. Click on "Place Order" at the bottom right hand corner of the page. You should receive the green check mark notifying you that your removal order was a "Success."
There you have it, I was able to complete these 8 simple steps and write this brief tutorial blog over a 30 minute period while enjoying a cup of coffee at the local and wonderful Custom House Coffee.