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  #1  
Old 07-08-2009, 09:36 PM
straggler straggler is offline
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Buying "New and Used" from Amazon.com 3rd parties. What does "Fulfillment by Amazon" mean?

Hi there,

I recently attempted to purchase a book through Amazon, only to discover that it was out of stock. However, there was a link suggesting that I could buy a used copy. So I clicked the link, and a list of new and used copies for sale (by 3rd parties) appeared. Naturally I feel a bit reluctant to just chuck money in to the ether, but some of the listings had a caption that read "Fulfillment by Amazon". I tried to find out what this means, but I just want to be sure.

Does "Fulfillment by Amazon" mean that the used copy of the book I am thinking of purchasing is already in Amazon's hands? Or am I relying on the seller to ship the book to Amazon first, who will then release my money to the seller, or..

What does "Fulfillment by Amazon" mean? I'm hoping it means that Amazon is already holding the book I want, which will give me confidence that I will get my item, and that the book will ship soon.

Thanks.
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  #2  
Old 07-08-2009, 09:39 PM
IAmNotSpartacus IAmNotSpartacus is offline
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First result for a Google search on 'fulfillment by amazon': http://www.amazonservices.com/conten...-by-amazon.htm

Quote:
You sell it, we ship it. Amazon has created one of the most advanced fulfillment networks in the world, and your business can now benefit from our expertise. With Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) you store your products in Amazon's fulfillment centers, and we directly pack, ship, and provide customer service for these products.
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  #3  
Old 07-08-2009, 09:52 PM
CalMeacham CalMeacham is offline
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What does "Fulfillment by Amazon" mean?

I don't know, but my imagination is racing overtime.....
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  #4  
Old 07-08-2009, 10:53 PM
Thudlow Boink Thudlow Boink is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by straggler View Post
What does "Fulfillment by Amazon" mean? I'm hoping it means that Amazon is already holding the book I want, which will give me confidence that I will get my item, and that the book will ship soon.
Click where it says "Fulfillment by Amazon" and they'll tell you what it means.
Quote:
Items "Fulfilled by Amazon" are shipped from an Amazon Fulfillment Center to you. All of our standard shipping rates and policies apply to these items, including FREE Super Saver Shipping on qualifying orders over $25.

"Fulfilled by Amazon" items are sent to you via one of our carriers (US Postal Service, UPS, FedEx, etc.) at whatever delivery speed you choose (standard shipping, 2-day shipping, etc).

After you place an order, the carrier, ship date, and estimated delivery date for your package will be listed in Your Account and can be found in your shipment confirmation e-mail. If you have a tracking or delivery confirmation number, you can track your package by clicking the "Track packages" link in Your Account.

Amazon also handles all customer service and product returns for "Fulfilled by Amazon" items. If you need assistance with anything, please visit our Help pages by clicking the word "Help" in the top right corner of any page of our Web site.
This, together with IAmNotSpartacus's info, suggests that they are already holding the book.

By the way, I've bought a lot of used books, DVDs, etc. through the Amazon marketplace third-party sellers, usually with no complaints.

Last edited by Thudlow Boink; 07-08-2009 at 10:55 PM..
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Old 07-08-2009, 11:07 PM
straggler straggler is offline
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Thanks everyone.
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  #6  
Old 07-09-2009, 01:25 AM
DrDeth DrDeth is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thudlow Boink View Post

By the way, I've bought a lot of used books, DVDs, etc. through the Amazon marketplace third-party sellers, usually with no complaints.
I have found one issue- rarely the "used" book is a ex-library copy. Once it appeared it had not been "withdrawn".

If you just want to read them, that's OK, but a ex-library copy has no used or collector value, in general. The seller needs to specify this, and the few "one star" ratings I have given (for a book rcvd) is for this issue.
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  #7  
Old 07-09-2009, 10:55 AM
Turble Turble is offline
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I've also bought a lot of used books through Amazon with no problems. They have very strict rules and are quick to remove problem sellers.
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  #8  
Old 07-09-2009, 01:40 PM
control-z control-z is online now
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I've bought used books, DVDs, and video games from Amazon. Prices seem to be less than eBay, and there's no PayPal to deal with.
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  #9  
Old 07-09-2009, 02:10 PM
Shot From Guns Shot From Guns is offline
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As has been discussed, "Fulfilled by Amazon" means that the seller has contracted with Amazon so that their goods are stored in an Amazon warehouse, and they will be packed and shipped by Amazon.

This also means that anything you buy from one of these sellers will count towards Amazon's free Super-Saver shipping.
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  #10  
Old 07-09-2009, 02:13 PM
griffin1977 griffin1977 is offline
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The big problem I've had is that unlike ebay the description is often less than accurate....

I've have DVD that turn out to be the European-region with German subtitles and menu and two book textbook set that came with only one.
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Old 07-09-2009, 02:20 PM
control-z control-z is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by griffin1977 View Post
The big problem I've had is that unlike ebay the description is often less than accurate....

I've have DVD that turn out to be the European-region with German subtitles and menu and two book textbook set that came with only one.
What was the seller's feedback like on those items?
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  #12  
Old 07-09-2009, 02:33 PM
griffin1977 griffin1977 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by control-z View Post
What was the seller's feedback like on those items?
They were good. I don't think they were attempts to rip me off. I think there is a systematic problem. I'm not sure how a particular 3rd-party product gets associated with an amazon product page, but whatever system is used its broken. I think the only leeway a given vendor is given to distinguish their product from the description on amazon is the "condition" indicator (e.g. good, execellent, like new, or whatever).
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  #13  
Old 07-09-2009, 04:06 PM
Mr. Slant Mr.  Slant is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shot From Guns View Post
As has been discussed, "Fulfilled by Amazon" means that the seller has contracted with Amazon so that their goods are stored in an Amazon warehouse, and they will be packed and shipped by Amazon.

This also means that anything you buy from one of these sellers will count towards Amazon's free Super-Saver shipping.
Another interesting tidbit is that should there be customer service challenges, you deal with Amazon's customer service staff, not the 3rd-party marketplace seller (3MP) that shipped the items off to Amazon for distribution.
Also, you can't leave negative feedback for shipping/handling/delivery issues, as Amazon forbids customer from leaving feedback for Amazon's performance.
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  #14  
Old 07-09-2009, 04:28 PM
Mr. Slant Mr.  Slant is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by griffin1977 View Post
They were good. I don't think they were attempts to rip me off. I think there is a systematic problem. I'm not sure how a particular 3rd-party product gets associated with an amazon product page, but whatever system is used its broken. I think the only leeway a given vendor is given to distinguish their product from the description on amazon is the "condition" indicator (e.g. good, execellent, like new, or whatever).
I move about $30K in used books per year on Amazon, so I may be able to shed some light on this.
You can list via uploading an inventory file or manually through a menu system. Only small-timers use the manual system, as it's a time sink if you have any substantial inventory.
You're supposed to find the "ASIN" key associated with the item. For recently-produced items this will be the UPC or ISBN. Vintage items frequently have a 'synthetic' key associate with them, beginning in a B.

Amazon's official stance is that Thou Shalt Not list any item on an ASIN title page that does not exactly match the catalog page in all details. Thou Shalt Not list any items for sale that lack any element advertised on the catalog page. Same thing with editions: you can't list the UK printing of a US-market book, nor a 1st edition on a 2nd edition page. If the page count doesn't match, same deal.
No book club editions on the retail book page, either.
If a book shipped from the publisher with a CD-ROM and you fail to include said CD-ROM when you sell your copy, you may be required to accept a return, refund in full, and send the buyer a pre-paid mailer if you want the item returned.
There is an exception for books with missing dust jackets; if you list those in Acceptable and then disclaim the absence of a dust jacket, you're in the clear.

There. Them's the rules. They're not.. exactly followed to the letter by all 3MP sellers.

I can expound on this crap for hours. If anyone wants an MPSIMS thread or something, I'll be glad to participate.
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  #15  
Old 07-09-2009, 04:48 PM
SmackFu SmackFu is offline
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I also have had no problem with 3rd party shippers.

But as a practical matter, "fulfillment by Amazon" means you pay Amazon shipping rates rather than the standard 3rd party shipping rates. Including Prime if you have that.
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  #16  
Old 07-09-2009, 06:13 PM
Arnold Winkelried Arnold Winkelried is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by griffin1977 View Post
I've have DVD that turn out to be the European-region with German subtitles and menu and two book textbook set that came with only one.
Hah! I bought a James Bond DVD from a link on Amazon once (obviously from some third-party, not Amazon itself), and said DVD had the following interesting characteristics: the subtitles available were Chinese and Indonesian, and periodically during the movie there would be some text superimposed on the bottom saying something about this movie being only for Academy Award committee members.
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