In this process, there are a series of technical standards and good practices to comply with so that the products reach the buyer’s hands without any type of inconvenience.
Let’s talk a little about Marketplace distribution requirements.
Specifically the practices when preparing, packing or packaging your items once sold to comply with the policies of different Marketplaces such as Amazon, Mercadolibre and other not so giant but equally well known.
Don’t miss our installment on trends in logistics for ecommerce ecommerce in 2022 .
To begin with, who is responsible for the fulfillment ?
It is worth mentioning that there are two major configurations when it comes to selling in Marketplaces, which are aligned around the so-called ‘logistic distribution models‘.
Generally speaking, they are defined by who assumes responsibility after a sale is recorded.
So we will have:
- The fulfillment by Merchant The Merchant: In which all the responsibility for the logistics is in the hands of the seller.
- And the fulfillment by Marketplace where you send batches of merchandise to the Marketplace and they take care of all the warehouse operations, orders, shipments and customer service for a fee.
Large companies such as Amazon, Mercadolibre and even Wal-Mart offer these value-added services, in addition to their great showcase to sell.
In the case of Amazon, we have the very well known service of Fulfillment by Amazon or FBA and in the case of Mercadolibre it is Mercadoenvíos, with a promise of delivery to any part of the country within 24 hours.
We begin with this caveat because the preparation of the items for shipment after the sale depends to a large extent on it.
Get to know What is Fulfillment for e-commerce and how does it work? .
Requirements for distribution on Amazon
Amazon’ s logistics will demand certain ‘preparation requirements‘ of your products that you will have to comply with in order for them to arrive smoothly to any of the logistics centers of this Marketplace.
In fact, when you sign up as a seller, through your Amazon account you will have access to the Seller Central where you will be provided with a complete guide for the preparation of the products.
Some products requiring further preparation
Depending on the category to which each of your products belong, during the ‘creation of shipments’ you will see the tab ‘Requires preparation‘ which will direct you to the guide with specific instructions for safe shipment.
Obviously, there are product categories that require more attention than others, according to Amazon these are some of them:
- Fragile items such as glass or porcelain: They require additional material such as bubble packaging(burbupack) and passing a ‘drop test’ at a height of 80 cm.
- Liquid products: They should be wrapped in a transparent bag with a tape seal; containers should not exceed a net content of 1 liter.
- Textiles prone to moisture or dirt damage also require a bag for protection.
- Sharp products: Those that occupy bubble packaging and must pass a shake test to rule out sharp edges breaking their packaging.
- Adult material: They require opaque packaging.
- Items less than 5.4 centimeters in length (considered small products).
- Batteries or items that include it.
On the Amazon Seller Central Mexico site you will find videos with specific instructions for these product categories.
Some practices required by Amazon distribution
Keep in mind the following recommendations for the correct distribution of your products with Amazon:
- All items occupy a product tag with a unique Amazon reference number (FNSKU), which you generate from the inventory management page of your Seller Central.
- The label must be scannable, with its EAN, UPC or ISBN codes legible. This must be accessible without having to open or unpack the item.
- Amazon will not allow you to include unauthorized branding or marketing materials on your packaging.
- It will not accept items that require separate assembly at its logistics center.
- If there is an expiration date, it must be visible.
Requirements for distribution in Mercadolibre
Like Amazon, Mercadolibre also makes available to its sellers and users the requirements for safe distribution and shipping, ranging from the way to issue the label, to certain technical packaging requirements depending on the product category.
Product labeling for distribution with Mercadolibre
This Marketplace requires the printing of the labels as they are generated in your seller account, without modifying sizes and with quality printing.
The number of labels you need to generate varies according to the logistical means of distribution you use:
- For DHL there will be 3, the one with three barcodes goes on the package, the other 2 are control codes.
- For FedEx there are 2
- Paquetexpress, Estafeta and Mercadoenvíos operators, only one label applies.
Mercadolibre recommends the use of thermal printers for your labels printed on adhesive paper.
Categories requiring special preparation
There will always be products that require special attention, regardless of the marketplace, logistics operator or fulfillment method you use. fulfillment you employ. Mercadolibre is no exception, they pay special attention to:
- Liquids: Should be protected with insulating material to avoid spills.
- Fragile: Glass, ceramics, electronics, other delicate materials occupy shock-insulating packaging material such as bubbles, paper balls or polyethylene; plus a label with the legend: «Fragile – treat with care».
- Cutting: Protecting their ends or sharp edges to prevent them from puncturing your gasket.
- Bulk material: Use reinforced protection to prevent loss of contents.
Other best practices recommended by Mercadolibre distribution
Mercadolibre through Mercado Envíos makes the following recommendations for its sellers:
- Maintain a stock of packaging and wrapping material, depending on the items you sell: boxes, stretch film, plastic bags, bubble packing material or burbupack, plastic bubbles. ecommerce packaging material, bubble or burbupack packaging material, plastic bubbles.
- It is not advisable to use paper for any packaging, nor boxes in poor condition.
- They also discourage the use of painter’s tape as a means of sealing boxes.
- They encourage the use of packaging material approved by their official store.
- The use of boxes that are not rectangular or square in shape is not permitted.
- Several items within the same package are allowed, provided that separate compartments are used for each item or they are protected with wrapping or insulating material to avoid knocks and deterioration among them.
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Requirements for distribution in other Marketplaces
Although it is known that in Mexico there are at least twenty Marketplaces, let’s talk about a couple of them a little specialized and smaller than the previous ones, who also offer advice and good practices for shipping and distribution of items sold through its ecommerce .
Good distribution and package shipping practices according to Linio
Linio is a Marketplace with presence in Mexico and 5 other countries, at the end of 2018 it was acquired by Grupo Falabella which gives greater presence.
It focuses on a young audience and highlights the following categories: electronics and technology, home, fashion and beauty.
Linio does not skimp on preparing and publishing an extensive guide of more than 70 pages with recommendations for the packaging and packing of the items sold on its site.
They emphasize the way packages are labeled with the 2 automatic guides that are generated through your account in their Seller Center . In addition to accompanying each package with the invoice and purchase order.
They prohibit the use of recycled boxes and bags, garbage bags and manila envelopes as packaging material.
Throughout the aforementioned guide you will find specific instructions for the preparation of most of the categories present in your Marketplace.
Best practices for shipping products sold on Etsy
Etsy has become famous as the ‘handmade marketplace’. Handmade Marketplace ‘ so it specializes in handmade crafts, crafts, decorations, antiques and other handmade products.
Because of their focus, they evidently have their eye on Mexico and recently opened an office in CDMX as reported by El Economista.
Etsy has a variety of publications where they encourage their sellers to good practices when preparing their delicate products for shipping.
Here are some particularities:
- Unlike, for example, Amazon, they encourage their sellers to flaunt branding and other elements that ‘give your packages a professional image’ such as business cards and thank you notes.
- Due to the nature of the items, they recommend, when necessary, ‘double packing’, such as two boxes and leaving an impact space of about 5 centimeters by covering with cushioning material.
- Encourage the possibility of free shipping by integrating these costs into your pricing strategy.
- Promote the use of environmentally friendly packaging materials.
Here are some other tips as well as requirements for distribution and shipping with Etsy.
In closing, we hope this tour of tips, best practices and technical requirements for distribution will give you a better understanding of how to prepare your products and packages for Marketplace logistics.
If you have any questions or need further professional advice to optimize your distribution models and value-added services you can always count on the team of ABC Logistics .