March 22, 2023

What is Amazon Stranded Inventory and How is it Fixed? 

Amazon is running out of stock, and I have a ton of products sitting in my warehouses. Wouldn't it be great if I could sell these products and make a few extra bucks to help make ends meet?
What is Amazon Stranded Inventory and How is it Fixed? 
Paul Jatau
What is Amazon Stranded Inventory and How is it Fixed? 

What is Amazon Stranded Inventory and How is it Fixed? 

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Selling on Amazon is a great way to expand your reach and increase company sales. However, as an Amazon seller, there are several hitches you may face on the platform. 

One problem that Amazon Sellers face is what is called Stranded Inventory. Stranded Inventory on Amazon can be a real struggle and lead to unnecessary storage costs, product loss, and account issues. 

In this article, we will look at everything you need to know about Amazon Stranded Inventory and how you can avoid and get it fixed.  

Key Takeaways

  • Stranded inventory is a common issue for Amazon sellers, which refers to the products that are not available for sale due to various reasons such as listing errors, FBA restrictions, and more.
  • Stranded inventory can significantly impact your seller metrics, lead to storage fees, and ultimately reduce your profits on the platform. However, by identifying and resolving the issues that caused the inventory to become stranded, sellers can effectively manage their inventory and improve their performance.
  • To prevent stranded inventory, sellers should regularly monitor their inventory, review their listings for errors or inconsistencies, ensure that their products meet Amazon's requirements, and consider utilizing Amazon's automatic removal program for unsellable inventory. Additionally, sellers should optimize their inventory management practices by forecasting demand, setting realistic prices, and diversifying their product offerings.

What is Amazon Stranded Inventory? 

For many Amazon sellers, stranded inventory can be a real challenge. 

Amazon Stranded Inventory refers to the inventory stored in Amazon FBA warehouses with no active offer for the product. This means that customers will not be able to purchase the product. What’s more,  even with an inactive inventory, Amazon will continue to charge monthly storage fees on that inventory. 

If you do not pay attention to inventory issues on your Amazon Seller Central account, you may incur other fees including FBA inventory storage and FBA long-term storage fees

Amazon FBA stranded inventory could also impact your Inventory Performance Index (IPI) negatively. If your IPI score falls below 400, Amazon may place a limit on your storage space. 

Reasons for Stranded Inventory on Amazon

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Your inventory may get stranded for many reasons. Here are the most common reasons for stranded inventory on Amazon: 

Amazon listing error

An Amazon listing error occurs when your inventory isn’t connected to any active ASIN. This typically happens when you or a competitor deletes a listing. To fix an Amazon-stranded inventory listing error, all you need to do is list the product again to reconnect the inventory. However, in a few cases, you may need to contact Amazon Seller Support for assistance. 

Pricing error

A pricing error occurs when your prices fall significantly below or more than your previous prices or product prices similar to yours. When Amazon detects this, they may suspend your listing. To fix this error, simply place your maximum and minimum prices in the “Manage Inventory” section on your Amazon Seller Central account. 

Restricted ASIN

Amazon may sometimes restrict ASINs for various reasons including intellectual property violations, poor product quality, the need for further safety tests, and other reasons. Since restricted ASINs can happen for various reasons, you will need to contact Amazon Seller Support to identify and resolve the problem. 

Suspended listing

Suspended or suppressed listings occur when your product listing doesn’t meet Amazon requirements. Amazon may suppress or suspend listings with missing information like images, bullet points, age requirements, and so on. Amazon may also suspend listings with a high number of product returns. 

Closed listing 

Closing or deleting a product listing from your Amazon Seller account after selling out means that customers won’t be able to purchase your product even if you have inventory at Amazon warehouses. If this happens, your products will become stranded. 

Expired product

If your product is expired, it will be removed from an active listing, causing it to be tagged as stranded by Amazon. When this happens, you will need to remove them from the fulfillment center. 

Brand qualification required 

Your inventory may become stranded if you need to get prior approval from a brand or an authorized distributor to sell their products. To get approval, you can apply via Amazon’s approval system. 

Where to find Stranded Inventory on Amazon

As an Amazon seller, it is important to keep an eye on your inventory report to avoid stranded inventory leading to excessive storage costs. To find your stranded inventory report, simply go to your Amazon Seller Central account, hover around the Inventory Tab and click on Manage Inventory.

If you have stranded inventory, you will see “Fix Stranded Inventory” on the report page. Once you click on this page, you will be able to view all your stranded inventory as well as the reason they are stranded. Depending on the reason for your stranded inventory, you will also see a dropdown menu on the right side of the screen which contains options to help resolve the stranded inventory. 

How to fix Amazon Stranded Inventory

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To fix stranded inventory on your Amazon Seller Central account, you may need to contact the Amazon Seller Support team or simply remove your stranded inventory. 

Contact Amazon Seller Support 

To contact Amazon Seller Support, simply go to your Seller Central account and click on Help. At the bottom page, locate the Need more help? Section and click on ‘Get Support’.

Next, select Selling on Amazon and then Fulfillment by Amazon and investigate Other FBA Issues, and then Stranded Inventory. 

Next, you will be required to enter your ASIN/FNSKU. Once done, the page will tell you exactly what the problem is and how you can fix it. However, if you need further help, you can click on ‘Need more help with this issue? Contact Us’

Create removal order 

Another way to fix stranded inventory on Amazon is to remove it. To do this, click on the Create Removal Order option from the dropdown menu in the Action field. With this option, you can choose to have your product disposed of or returned to you. You will need to pay removal order fees for whatever option you choose. 

Relist stranded inventory 

You can easily relist your stranded inventory thanks to a simple feature released by Amazon. Simply go to the Fix Stranded Inventory page and click on the Edit automatic action settings button. This will show you a popup that allows you to set up the number of days (from 1 to 30 days) that Amazon will relist your inventory automatically.  

How to prevent Amazon Stranded Inventory 

Handling stranded inventory can be a daunting task. However, there are some steps you can take to prevent stranded inventory on Amazon. 

Carry out proper research before listing and sending inventory to FBA warehouses

Some products may require approval to sell on the Amazon marketplace. Before buying inventory, it is important to carry out proper research on the product to find out if you are allowed to sell it. This is especially important if you are doing arbitrage or wholesale. Ensure you are permitted to sell in a particular product category or brand. 

Ensure FBA shipments are 100% accurate

Before sending your product to FBA warehouses, you will need to create a shipping plan. One reason your inventory may be stranded is if you sent items to the warehouse which weren't included in your shipping plan or if you received more inventory than was stated in your shipping plan. Ensure that the information on your shipping plan is 100% accurate to avoid any hitches during check-in. 

Complete listing information 

When creating your product listing, you can skip some steps like adding product images and product features. However, if you don’t complete your product listing information before sending your inventory to FBA warehouses, your products may become stranded. You want to ensure you complete your listing before sending them to FBA warehouses to avoid listing errors that can lead to stranded inventory. 

Price products within the minimum and maximum price settings 

Setting your price below or above your minimum and maximum price settings, Amazon will have your listing disabled. For example, if you set the minimum price for a product at $20 and you set prices on your listing at $19.98, your listing will be disabled and your inventory stranded. 

Avoid deleting your offers or listings immediately 

If you’ve run out of stock and don’t plan on restocking your inventory, do not delete your offer or listing immediately. Lost inventory or returns without an active offer can lead to stranded inventory. 

What is the difference between a Stranded Inventory and an Unfulfillable Inventory on Amazon? 

Unfulfillable inventory and stranded inventory produce similar outcomes but there is one major difference between the both of them.

Unfulfillable inventory occurs when the offer or listing is active but the product cannot be shipped typically because of the inventory. The inventory could be damaged or lost. It could also be due to other factors like poor labeling and shipment discrepancies. 

With unfulfillable inventory, the Amazon seller will still be charged storage fees after every inventory clean-up. 

On the other hand, stranded inventory is the exact opposite. While inventory is available at fulfillment centers, there are no active listings or offers, making it stranded. 

For both unfulfillable and stranded inventory, Amazon continues to charge storage fees including monthly storage fees, long-term storage fees, and overage fees.  

Stay on top of your Amazon inventory 

To be successful in the Amazon marketplace, you need to stay on top of your Amazon inventory to ensure you don't have any stranded inventory that could affect your account’s performance and profit. 

FAQs 

What is Amazon stranded inventory? 

Amazon Stranded Inventory refers to the products that are listed in Amazon's fulfillment centers, but they are not available for sale to customers because they are not connected to an active Amazon product listing. This can happen due to various reasons such as the removal of the product listing or the product being out of stock. Stranded inventory can be a problem for Amazon sellers as it ties up inventory space and capital without generating any sales, which literally means they are “stranded.”

How do I find stranded inventory on Amazon? 

Amazon notifies you about stranded inventory via email. You can also check it yourself on the Seller Central dashboard in the “Manage Inventory” section. 

To locate and address stranded inventory on Amazon:

  • Log in to your seller account, access the "Inventory" tab, select "Manage Inventory," and click on "Fix Stranded Inventory" under the "Stranded Inventory" section. 
  • Amazon will provide a list of stranded inventory along with the reasons for the issue. Take the necessary actions to resolve the problem and reactivate your inventory.

How do I fix stranded inventory listing errors?

To fix stranded inventory listing errors on Amazon, sellers should first identify the reason for the error and take appropriate corrective measures. Common reasons for stranded inventory errors include incomplete or incorrect product information, inactive listings, incorrect categorization, or merged ASINs. Once the issue is identified, sellers can update the product information, create a new listing, or correct the categorization to fix the issue.

Amazon provides a "Fix Stranded Inventory" feature in Seller Central that displays a list of stranded inventory items and the reason for why they are stranded. Once the issue is resolved, the inventory will become active again on Amazon's marketplace, reducing the negative impacts of stranded inventory on sellers' businesses.

Why does Amazon reserve my inventory?

Amazon reserves inventory for various reasons such as pending orders, slow-moving products, FBA inventory storage limits, and account performance issues. By reserving inventory, Amazon can ensure that products are available for sale and shipped in a timely manner. 

In some cases, they may still be available for purchase, but their delivery date may be delayed. This helps to maintain customer satisfaction and ensures that sellers have sufficient inventory to meet demand.

How does stranded inventory impact Amazon sellers?

Stranded inventory can have negative impacts on Amazon sellers, including reduced sales, increased storage fees, decreased visibility, negative impact on seller metrics, and loss of profits. It's crucial for sellers to monitor and address any stranded inventory issues to minimize these impacts.

What are some common causes of stranded inventory?

Common causes of stranded inventory on Amazon include listing errors, inactive listings, merged ASINs, incorrect categorization, FBA shipment errors, and product restrictions. Regular monitoring of inventory and listing information can help sellers identify and address these issues proactively to avoid lost sales and storage fees.

Why ae my products not showing up in my Amazon inventory?

Amazon inventory may not show a seller's products due to several reasons, such as incomplete or incorrect product listings, inactive or removed listings, unfulfillable inventory, FBA shipment errors, or technical issues with Amazon's system.

It's important for sellers to review their product listings and ensure they meet Amazon's requirements, keep their listings active, and regularly check their inventory status to resolve any issues and make sure their products are listed for sale on Amazon's marketplace.

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