Managing a successful ecommerce business across multiple online sales channels can be challenging. As your presence across channels – like ecommerce marketplaces, social media stores, or brand websites – grows, so do the complexities of handling your company’s logistics, including warehousing, inventory management, order fulfillment, shipping, and returns.
Indeed, multi-channel ecommerce businesses can boost their revenue by selling on numerous channels, but to do so they must be able to handle the difficulties of increased order volumes and maintain a positive shopping experience from checkout to delivery for all their orders. The latter remains a key priority for customers. In fact, 85% of shoppers stated that a unsatisfactory delivery experience would prevent them from ordering from the same online business again.
Nevertheless, many businesses are up for the challenge, as our research shows that around 70% of Amazon sellers in the US sell on at least one off-Amazon channel. Some will look to outsource their logistics to a third-party logistics (3PL) provider in order to help them successfully pursue a multi-channel selling strategy.
3PLs, like Amazon Multi-Channel Fulfillment (MCF), can provide operational expertise and a vast global network, enabling you to optimize the order fulfillment process and safeguard a smooth delivery experience across various sales channels.
MCF offers fulfillment services for orders placed on off-Amazon channels, giving your customers the Amazon fulfillment experience – with fast, reliable deliveries – no matter which channels they are shopping on. In fact, MCF even has specific features, like unbranded packaging, that ensure you can sell your products across sales channels easily while your customer experience remains top notch.
In this blog, we discuss the benefits of MCF’s unbranded packaging feature and explain how it works.
The benefits of unbranded packaging
When a business uses MCF as their 3PL and a customer places an order on an off-Amazon sales channel, the order is fulfilled by MCF and sent out in unbranded packaging.* This means the packing slip, shipping labels, and packaging materials that MCF uses – including boxes, tape, jiffy mailers, and polybags – do not contain any Amazon branding. MCF orders are automatically shipped in unbranded packaging at no additional fee.
The MCF unbranded packaging feature is available in numerous countries – including the US, UK, Canada, Germany, Spain, France, Japan, and Italy.
Utilizing unbranded packaging for your off-Amazon orders offers a number of benefits including:
- A consistent brand experience – No matter what channel a customer places an order on, their experience will be the same. MCF delivers orders in as fast as two days and sends real-time tracking updates every step of the way. Finally, a blank box will arrive on your customer’s doorstep. The use of unbranded packaging allows you to maintain your brand identity and avoid any confusion that may occur if packages arrived in Amazon-branded packaging.
- Compliance with ecommerce marketplace guidelines – A recent study revealed that 73% of consumers use multiple channels over the course of their shopping journeys. Meeting customers where they shop most can help boost your business’ sales, but you must monitor and abide by ecommerce marketplace requirements in order to be successful. Being automatically enrolled in unbranded packaging can help ensure you adhere to third-party marketplace guidelines and are able to use MCF to fulfill orders from those marketplaces.
How unbranded packaging works
There are three steps in the unbranded packaging process:
- Inbound shipment creation: Prepare, label, and send your inventory to Amazon Fulfillment Centers using the standard inbound process you typically follow. MCF will automatically distribute your inventory across the Amazon fulfillment network – so that your products are ready to be picked, packed, and shipped out to customers.
- Inventory visibility: Then, you can check the amount of inventory available to be fulfilled with unbranded packaging in your Seller Central account.
- Order processing: Once a customer places an order, MCF fulfills the order. MCF orders are prioritized to ship in unbranded packaging when inventory is available for unbranded packaging.
You also have the option of managing your unbranded packaging usage and selecting to only fulfill orders if they’re able to be shipped in unbranded packaging.** There are two ways to manage your unbranded packaging settings:
- Manage your settings in Seller Central: You can choose for Amazon to fulfill MCF orders using only unbranded packaging. When placing an MCF order using the Seller Central MCF order creation page, select the “Ship only in Unbranded Packaging” option in step two, called “Add items.” This allows orders to only be placed with items that are eligible for unbranded packaging.
- Manage your settings in your MCF integration: MCF offers 100+ integration options to integrate your back-end systems with MCF to automate your order fulfillment process. If you use one the MCF integrations that support adjustments to unbranded packaging settings, you can manage them through your integration as well. With custom APIs, you can manage your unbranded packaging settings through the feature called “Blank_Box.”
If you do not opt to manage your unbranded packaging settings, all of your eligible inventory will be automatically shipped in unbranded packaging by MCF.
Expanding your ecommerce business across various sales channels can provide opportunities to reach new customers and help boost revenue growth. But multi-channel selling brings additional complexities – especially when it comes to handling logistics operations. By utilizing a 3PL like MCF, you can scale your business to handle surges in order volume while improving shopper satisfaction. MCF orders are automatically shipped in unbranded packaging, helping to ensure you maintain a consistent, first-class customer experience across all the channels you sell on.
*Note that for US orders, MCF’s unbranded packaging feature does not include items that exceed 56 inches for the longest side or are heavier than 49.9 lb. For the UK, JP, and CA, MCF’s unbranded packaging feature does not include non-sortable inventory that exceeds 45.72 x 35.56 x 20.32 cm and/or 9 kg. For DE, IT, FR, and ES, MCF’s unbranded packaging does not include non-sortable inventory, apparel and footwear, or items that exceed 45.72 x 35.56 x 20.32 cm and/or 9 kg.
**This feature is only available in the US, UK, and Canada.