Remove existing images through feed / inv. flat file

Hello,

We have been searching for a way to remove images from our items on Amazon. We sometimes update our items available images, and this can lead to less photos attached to the item then there were previously. So if an item had 5 images yesterday, today we may only want to display 3 images.

In our feed, when this happens we send a blank field for that image field. However, when Amazon receives this, they only will leave the prior image in place, sending a blank space (or actually directing the field to a white blank tile) just leads to Amazon keeping the original image in place.

Example :
day 1 in our feed - all regular images

  1. Image 1
    2.Image 2
    3.Image 3

Day 2 in our feed - removed image 3

  1. Image 1
    2.Image 2

And this is what Amazon will show
On Amazon Day 1

  1. Image 1
    2.Image 2
    3.Image 3

On Amazon Day 2

  1. Image 1
    2.Image 2
    3.Image 3

Removing an image from our daily feed to Amazon will not have Amazon remove the image from the item. As far as they are concerned, not sending anything in place of image 3 tells amazon to just keep using whatever was there before. Is there a way to send an image feed that allows us to remove the third image from Amazon?

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Just curious what happens when you remove image from manage inventory > edit?

When using manage inventory > edit to remove images, the images get removed without issue.

The problem we face is that we may change/remove images on hundreds to thousands of items in a day. Going the manage inventory > edit route would mean we have to dedicate someone to that task all day!

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Ah, yah that totally makes sense. I’ve never messed with images via flat file, but I’m sure someone here has

Are you using Partial Update or Update?

Partial Update only updates the attributes present in the file (but we question how well this works)

Update is suppose to delete all attributes and replace all data with what is present in the new file (this seems to work but you need to have all of the attributes needed for the listing on the file because, if you leave one out, then that attribute will be missing from the listing).

In your case, we would suggest creating a master file with all attributes for each listing so that you could remove / add the images as needed while supplying all attributes through an UPDATE upload.

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I use the PartialUpdate all the time, and do not have issues. @Lost_My_Marbles has had many issues. so…??

On the images, when I have tried to replace ONE, in the flat file/PartialUpdate - it took out all the images but the one. I simply upload them all now as that does not work, when I do.

also take a look at the image manager. It is not well known, well I was clueless up to 6 months ago.

Very nice tool. Individual manipulation and bulk upload

https://sellercentral.amazon.com/imaging/manage

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Thank you for your response. I am aware of the image tool, I actually love using it! But, there are some improvements that should be added.

For one, from my trials it can only except a limited number of items at once, I think 30. This needs to be increased!

Second, as far as I know you can only add one asin at a time using the asin search bar. There is no way to enter a comma separated asin list, or upload an excel list, to have more than one added at a time.

As far as using uploads to add images, we send a full update daily for all items. Our experience has been that if, for example, we go from 5 to 4 images Amazon keeps the 5th image as whatever is was before we sent the feed. Even though we are sending a blank spot in the upload for I age spot number 5. The 5th slot that is now blank, Amazon just keeps whatever image was in that spot active.

Perhaps we need to try as a partial update, from what I’ve seen people saying it wipes out all of the other images not included.

It is true that the flat file uploads are inconsistent and terrible. It’s such a broken system, you never know what’s going to pop out the other end when uploading a file.

I also want to add, we opened a case with Amazon and they informed us that the only way to remove an image from an item through a feed is to use the edit screen, or to totally delete that item then recreate it through our feed upload. Lame.

Also, Amazon support barely knows what’s going on at any given time, so I wont put too much stock in what they say!

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We send a full update daily of our entire inventory, then if changes are made throughout the day our system will send updated partials as required.

Of course, amazons system for flat file uploads is a mess and completely unreliable. We never know what’s going to pop out the other end.

The one constant is that we have been unable to remove images this way unless we are overwriting an image spot.

We noticed that with the addition of the upload image page that there is the suggestion to name the images as ASIN#.[position reference].jpg .

Example B09RVXXXXX.MAIN.jpg … B09RVXXXXX.PT01.jpg … B09RVXXXXX.PT02.jpg

The excel template file gives the following naming suggestion …

A suggested way to name an image file is to save the image on your web server using the product SKU as the file name followed by the view type or variant code–MAIN, PT01-PT08 (additional images), SWCH (usually a color swatch only used on products with more than one variation). Examples: 8845013515.MAIN.jpg, 8845013515.PT01.jpg, 8845013515.SWCH.jpg

This is basically the same except the excel template file suggests using SKU rather than ASIN but the [POSITION REFERENCE] is consistent.

We are going to experiment with one of our items and rename it’s images to match the above formatting. Then we are going to do a single item file upload (all attributes completed) with some of the newly named images using the UPDATE function. After we see the results, then we will do another UPDATE upload with more images to see how well the add, delete and rearrange function works using the images with the suggested naming format.

The only way we will know is if we play.

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One crazy (and probably not possible) idea if all else fails …
Make a transparent gif as an image. Move all desired images to the left, adding the transparent gif as the last image you are trying to delete. I know that Amazon requires that the content in the image is 80% (?) of the image, but maybe they will just remove it for you since it doesn’t meet the criteria.

So in your example:

day 1 in our feed - all regular images

  1. Image 1
    2.Image 2
    3.Image 3

Day 2 in our feed - removed image 3

  1. Image 1
  2. Image 2
  3. Image (transparent gif)
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No

Authoritative Image Already Exists

An image will fail to upload if we prefer to use an image that already exists for this product.

You should use the Image Manager Tool to remove an image. Bulk Image Upload tool is designed to only upload.

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We wouldn’t do that as it could get your listing suppressed and it will look like one of those hijacked listings or attempting to hijack listings.

We would follow what @SawleMill has said (at least until a proven way to do upload/delete with a flat file is found).

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This has been the best way we’ve found to remove images, which is not convenient. Thank you for your words of wisdom!

2 Likes

I do 100% agree with your advice. I hadn’t really thought it through (about being suppressed or appearing like a hijacked listing). I was just trying to figure out a way to utilize the flat file for replacing images. I was pretty sure I had managed to replace images in the past, but not to delete them with nothing to replace it in the image slot.

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