Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Turnover Tuesdays - Manage Inventory vs. Manage FBA Inventory

For those who are not familiar, I started a series a while back called Turnover Tuesdays. Every Tuesday I like to highlight one item that I have resold. This will include profitable and non profitable sales. I hope that there is always something to learn.

The previous posts in the series can be found at the bottom of this post.

Deciding Which Inventory Management Page to Use

There are two pages to choose from within Seller Central on how to manage your inventory.  One is Manage Inventory and the other is Manage FBA Inventory.  They both have pros and cons. Amazon is also rolling out a new beta Manage FBA Inventory with some "enhancements".   I'll also throw in one tip at the end to improve your Manage Inventory screen.  I've used Manage FBA Inventory since I've started but I'm now questioning that.

There are some things you can only see in one or the other so it's a bit of a mixed bag but it's good to know what each has so you can decide which one to use primarily and whether you need to go back and forth.

Manage Inventory - Default


This is the standard manage inventory view.  We are going to enhance this later with more data.

1) The manage inventory page includes both your FBA and FBM inventory.  You won't see FBM inventory in your Manage FBA Inventory (for good reason).  For the same reason you can only adjust your FBM inventory from the regular Inventory Manager.

2) The ASIN and a link to the product are readily available.  You have to check a box every time on manage FBA Inventory to bring up the ASIN/Link

3) You can only edit the listing or change back and forth from FBA to FBM from Manage Inventory

Manage FBA Inventory - Current

1)  You can see a lot more listings at once.  Each listings takes up less space so you can see more and see it faster

2) You can see how many are fulfillable, unfulfillable, reserved, inbound. Standard Manage Inventory page only has available.

3) You can see how many total units you have and how many oversized units and what your limits are.  I don't usually get anywhere close to my limits (except oversized back in the day - good times!) but I like to see the trends over time.  As it starts to creep up I know it's time to trim a bit (like right now!)

4) The unit volume can only be seen in FBA inventory.  This is important for storage fee calculations.

New and "Enhanced" Manage FBA Inventory

Amazon has come out with a beta version  of a new Manage FBA Inventory page.  I don't know if everyone has access to it but I am able to go back and forth between the two versions.

The change makes the Manage FBA Inventory page very, very similar to the Manage Inventory page.  There are some enhancements and some disenhancements (can we make that into a word?)

1) They have removed the total unit storage monitor.  It's gone.  I'm pretty annoyed about that one.

2) You can now click on the the number of reserved units you have and you get more information.  You can find out how many are reserved for customer orders, how many for FC processing and FC transferring.  This is very useful information for replenishing decisions.  This was always available but only through reports.  This is much easier

3) You can see the ASIN/Link without having to click anything.  That's great.

4) You can still only see the cubic volume in Manage FBA Inventory.

Manage Inventory with Some Changes

I actually liked the new look of the manage FBA inventory page even though I was a little bummed about the storage monitor being gone.  I thought it took all the good features of Manage Inventory and added the nice new information about Reserved Inventory.

Well, it turns out that you can add that information and some even better data into Manage Inventory.

When you are in Manage Inventory click on preferences:

There are columns which are hidden and you can add them.  I've decided to add in Inbound, Available, Unfulfillable, Reserved, Buy Box Pricing, Lowest Price and Rank.  My new actually enhanced Manage Inventory page looks like this:

I can now see what the buy box pricing and rank is without having to go to the listing page.  That's good info to know.

The only thing that's missing is the storage monitor which is gone from the "enhanced" Manage FBA Inventory page anyways and the cubic volume.  I'll be using Manage Inventory for now on and I'll check my storage monitor every once in a while in the non beta version as long as it is available and the cubic volume just to be sure I'm not paying too much in storage fees.

Which inventory page do you use and why?

Week 1 - First attempt at reselling
Week 64 - The Buy Box
Week 65 - Amazon Restrictions and the Future of Selling on Amazon
Week 66 - Fun with Inventory Reimbursements
Week 67 - Q4 Storage Fees
Week 68 - Start Your Own Listings
Week 69 - A Long Tail Sale and Calculating Storage Fees
Week 70  - Prices Always Come Back Except When They Don't
Week 71 - Past Performance is No Guarantee of Future Results
Week 72 - Automation Beyond Amazon
Week 73 - Some Quick Holiday Tips
Week 74 - Update on Miles vs. Cashback Opportunity Costs
Week 75 - Pricing for the 4th Quarter Madness
Week 76 - Returns, Returns, Returns
Week 77 - Reimbursement
Week 78 - Q4 for Accelerated Inventory Turnover
Week 79 - How it is Going Outside of Amazon
Week 80 - 2017 Goals
Week 81 - I've Violated All of My Rules
Week 82 - When You Are That Shady Seller
Week 83 - January is part of Q4
Week 84 - My Returns Will be Inspected By Me
Week 85 - Business Expenses