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Amazon opens up logistics network to SMEs

04 May 2016

Amazon has launched its Pan-European Fulfilment by Amazon (FBA) programme. The service is said to help sellers of any size export to millions of Amazon customers across the EU more efficiently.

The move sees Amazon intensify its competition with traditional 3PLs for SME business across Europe. 

Amazon customers will be able to receive thousands of new products from sellers across the EU, while benefitting from faster shipping times and lower delivery costs. 

Pan-European FBA enables sellers to deliver their inventory to a local fulfilment centre for Amazon to take care of the logistics; automatically shipping sellers’ products across its European Fulfilment Network according to the anticipated local customer demand. Amazon will then pick, pack and ship orders to customers from the closest fulfilment centre where the product is available, as well as handling all customer service inquiries for the seller.

Tens of thousands of SMEs already sell to Amazon customers across the EU. 

For example:

• In 2015 Amazon’s UK sellers exported nearly £1.4bn;

• in Q1 2016, over 50 percent of EU sellers sell on more than one Amazon Marketplace in the EU;

• globally, FBA delivered more than 1bn items to customers worldwide in 2015.

Francois Saugier, Director of EU Seller Services, said: “Amazon’s Pan-European FBA programme will help sellers export to customers across the EU more efficiently than ever before, whilst allowing customers to benefit from faster delivery times and lower shipping costs. By gaining access to millions of new international customers, SMEs are given the opportunity to boost exports and successfully grow their business abroad”.

The new Pan-European FBA service can also help sellers to grow their business by making their products eligible for Amazon Prime, meaning they will have access to millions of Amazon’s most loyal customers, along with Amazon’s trusted and acclaimed customer service.

How Pan-European FBA works:

1. Start: Sellers enroll products that are eligible for Pan-European FBA.

2. Ship: Sellers ship Pan-European FBA enrolled products to a local Amazon Fulfilment Centre;

3. Distribute: Amazon will distribute sellers’ inventory across its European Fulfilment Network – at no extra cost to seller – in order to get it close to customers, based on the anticipated local demand;

4. Orders: When customers order the products, Amazon will handle the fulfilment logistics and provide fast, reliable delivery from the closest fulfilment centre where the product is available;

5. Fees: For the delivery, sellers will only pay the local fulfilment fee of the marketplace in which the product was ordered. There is no European Fulfilment Network cross-border fee.

Fulfilment by Amazon offers a suite of solutions for selling across Europe, each scaled to serve sellers of all sizes. Amazon sellers range from entrepreneurs working in their garage and small family owned shops to larger enterprises. Amazon has 29 fulfilment centres distributed across 7 countries in Europe, as well as Customer Service centres that are able to help customers in the local language of the five EU Amazon marketplaces.