Any other FBM sellers having difficulty with handling time?

Maybe it’s just me (although I know some other sellers have been bitten by the first one), but since Amazon started messing with handling time formulas (i.e. when they wanted to push 2-day sellers to 1-day handling), I’ve experienced this:

  • Randomly, some of my lead times of more than 2 days were changed to 2 days, and I had to manually correct and take a metric hit
  • Orders placed on the weekend (or Monday holiday) now include the weekend as a handling day, e.g. 5 day handling time orders placed on the weekend used to be due the following Monday (treated as if they arrived Monday morning), now due Friday (3 days earlier). Support denies this changed, I have years of experience that says otherwise.
  • An order that arrived the same day as other orders with 4 day handling time was treated as 2 day handling time (support’s insane response: “We understood your concern about the business days and business days does not include weekends, however, business days does not apply to you”)
  • The “ship by” date on the orders page keeps changing: sometimes it’s a 2 business-day range, sometimes it’s the first of those two days, sometimes it’s the last. If I drill down to the order, it’s consistently (I think) the 2-day range where the first day is meaningless.

They clearly keep futzing with this, and breaking things along the way, but support (including escalation) keeps saying nothing has changed, but refuses to answer point-blank questions, like when should a Sunday order with 4 day handling time be due … unless I have an order like that as a concrete example, at which case the answer is whatever the software says, with tortured reasoning working back from there. When I point out that if Thursday is 4-days, then Monday is 1-days, turning all Sunday orders into same-day shipping (or making Sunday a ship-day, however you care to look at it), the case gets closed for “potential” violation of policy.

Thanks for sharing any experiences you may be having. Good luck out there.

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We have not had issues.

  • Automated Shipping set to OFF
  • Automated Handle Time set to OFF
  • Business Hours set to Mon to Fri with weekend OFF
  • Holidays selected as observed
  • Default Handle Time set to 1 day
  • Product Handle Time set at item level to 2 days (if you need 3 put 3 here)
  • Shipping Templates set to 3 to 5 and 5 to 8 (depending on service level … and note that we only use USPS for shipping)

When Amazon switched our Default Handle Time to Automatic Handle Time, we went in and changed it back to 1. Everything went back to normal as item level handle time of 2 overrides default handle time of 1.

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I just read the question you asked Dominic, in his “Automated Handling Time” (link, NSFE) discussion, about sales opportunities lost due to incorrect metric dings.

It will be interesting to see whether or not it garners any response.


ETA:

And now I’ve just read your question to Dominic in this NSFE discussion:

https://sellercentral.amazon.com/seller-forums/discussions/t/8df375d2-571b-4721-a41f-ce761db393fa

Good Show.

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Same here; no problems (knock wood). I have to be careful when switching from FBA to FBM, because every time I do that, the handling time automatically changes to default and I have to edit to get it back to 2 days.

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Yep, same here…we turned the automated shipping off and have had no issues thus far. We have 2 day handling time on most of our items and orders that come in Friday/Saturday/Sunday don’t have to ship until Tuesday.

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:white_check_mark: :white_check_mark: :exclamation:SOLUTION ALERT :exclamation: :white_check_mark: :white_check_mark:

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My default handling time still says 2 days. I’m not gonna touch it.

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Same here.

With all due respect where it’s due:

:notes: :musical_note:


EVERY Move You Make

Amazon’s WATCHING You

:musical_note: :notes:

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One of my issues is that it wasn’t always like this: “We have 2 day handling time on most of our items and orders that come in Friday/Saturday/Sunday don’t have to ship until Tuesday.”

If Tuesday is 2 day for Sunday orders, then Monday is 1-day. But Sunday orders for same-day shipping (for sellers where Sunday is not a ship date) should ALSO be Monday, making 1-day and same-day the same thing. This seems wrong.

And it’s definitely different. We’ve had 4 day handling on our brand forever, and weekend orders used to be due Friday and are now due Thursday.

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Same. I seem to get random orders come through that have to be shipped next day. Today (Wednesday) I have an order received 4 hours ago that has to be shipped by Thursday. Not Thursday - Friday, just Thursday. I checked the SKU level handling time which was set to 2 days. I did some digging and finally figured out I had Automated Handling Time turned on in my Shipping settings so I turned that off. Hope that will stop this nonsense.

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Just gonna highlight the root of so many FBM evils and the remedy right here…

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Please do let us know when you figure this out. (either by marking a response as RESOLUTION, or otherwise) Thanks!

I have many FBM SKUs, 99% of them set at SKU level to 0 days handling time (throughout 70+% of the week, when we switch those over to 1 day (at the SKU level).

I am not seeing severe issues like you mention.
Although, we have experienced some & figured out to (& now able to) avoid them, it seems.

Of Course, ANY & ALL Auto Features (Auto Handling, Auto Limit, SSA [ Shipping Settings Automation], etc.) are turned OFF.

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That’s the separate & totally independent “Transit Times” you’re referring to there. Right?

(Different, & sepearte discussion, I believe.)

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Yes it is different than just Handle Time but we include the info as Handle Time and Transit Time generates the Deliver By Time. When you have an issue with Handle Time, you may also experience issues with the Deliver By Time which then can affect the services available if you are using Amazon Buy Shipping.

Automated Handle Time and Automated Shipping Time are different animals but both affect the sellers experience in processing orders. It is easier to tackle both issues with an explanation of what we do to avoid the issues. We do it to hopefully save other sellers some time by tackling both ends at the same time.

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Having just revisited that NSFE discussion, I’m not surprised to see this:

Pound them, Charley. Pound them.

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BTW Amazon turned on automated handling time, not me. You have to manually turn it off if you don’t want this feature.

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I previously turned that off and just found it was active agin - not activated by me!
They wanted to know my reason for turning it off.
I chose ‘other’ from the drop-down and left the message field blank.

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:angry: Y’all…I HATE it, but I think fbm sellers have to add all possibly automated shipping and handling options to the daily checklist. Amazon is out here taking too many liberties with our businesses!

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It’s recent for me, I had later ship-by dates just last week.

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Nail, meet hammer.

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