How Will COVID-19 Affect Amazon Vendors?

How Will COVID-19 Affect Amazon Vendors?


The coronavirus pandemic and its subsequent economic uncertainty may have affected all of us, but retailers have been particularly impacted by the recent crunch. At least 150 publicly traded companies, including Abercrombie & Fitch, Gap, HP and Visa have already warned investors of a significant economic hit during the second and third quarters of 2020 since the global outbreak. But the impact isn’t solely limited to physical retail outlets. Even digital platforms are likely to feel the pressure in the coming weeks. 

Amazon in particular. While the eCommerce giant may have announced an expected increase in sales over the past few months, much of that increase can be directly attributed to the increased demand for essential household goods and medical supplies—with the resulting shortages driving both public demand as well as panic. The result, as Amazon has indicated, has meant “temporarily prioritizing household staples, medical supplies, and other high-demand products coming into our fulfillment centers so that we can more quickly receive, restock, and deliver these products to customers.

It seems like a reasonable solution; particularly at a time when over 5,000 separate incidents of drastic price gouging on essential products have been reported by state attorney generals and consumer protection agencies. There’s just one problem for vendors and sellers of non-essential items:

For products other than these, we have temporarily disabled shipment creation. We are taking a similar approach with retail vendors. This will be in effect today through April 5, 2020, and we will let you know once we resume regular operations. Shipments created before today will be received at fulfillment centers.


Who Is Affected By The Suspension?

It’s important to remember that this temporary suspension only applies to merchants who are currently using Fulfillment By Amazon (FBA) services—which is likely going to be many of you reading this. All other Amazon services, such as Fulfillment By Merchant (FBA) or Seller-Fulfilled Prime (SFP) are exempt since you’re not actually using Amazon’s internal fulfillment network; and it’s quite common for merchants to use both Amazon’s network as well as their own fulfillment services. Hybrid Seller Central accounts are fairly easy to set up, and can actually provide you with a greater profit margin in spite of less convenience.

But even with this exemption, non-essential product orders are likely going to see temporary pauses as a result of Amazon’s change in prioritization.  But what constitutes an essential household item? Amazon has given the following examples:

  • Baby Products
  • Beauty & Personal Care, including personal care appliances
  • Grocery
  • Health & Household
  • Industrial & Scientific
  • Medical
  • Pet Supplies

As you can see, many of those items can be interpreted fairly broadly. It just happens to leave out apparel, books, consumer electronics, entertainment and luxury retail product listings. All items that have historically been top sellers for Amazon merchants.


Is The Measure Needed?

In times of a global medical crisis, it’s understandable why Amazon needs to focus on the quick replenishment and delivery of essential household items—particularly given the shortages reported in regions hit the hardest by the coronavirus.

However, some merchants have critical items that can help during this global pandemic but are not allowed to ship into Amazon. Still, other merchants are wondering if they’re missing out on a potential sales advantage; particularly in the U.S., where state and federal officials are doing everything in their power to encourage remote work for non-essential employees. Yet reports appear to have indicated that many sellers of non-essential goods have seen their sales drop by 40% to 60% on Amazon in the past three weeks alone as discretionary spending becomes less of a priority for many consumers. In fact, some have reported seeing 40 to 60 days worth of inventory in stock, necessitating an entirely new refocus of their own sales strategies.


How Drastic Is The Measure?

While the suspension isn’t an outright prohibition or ban, the window between now and April 5th can seem like an unbearably wide one; particularly when maintaining first quarter revenues seems so positively vital given the current economic state. 

But even given the uncertainty and constantly evolving status of an epidemic that could potentially last for months on end, it’s important for merchants to remember that Amazon’s solution is far from permanent; nor is FBA the sole fulfillment service to sell with. In fact, Amazon isn’t even the sole eCommerce platform currently available. Learning how to navigate a crisis has always been the hallmark of an intelligent business, be that through marketing strategization, supply chain management or product development. Amazon’s product orders depend on public demand—and meeting that demand during an economic crisis requires booth foresight and adaptability. Don’t rely solely on Amazon’s FBA to drive that demand. Focus on the quality of your product, not its culpability. Customers can see the difference. Even when you can’t.


Color More Lines provides white glove, global account management of your eCommerce platforms so mission-driven companies can focus on new product development, branding and growth strategies. Find out more at Color More Lines.


How Do I Activate My Amazon Product Listings Report?

How Do I Activate My Amazon Product Listings Report?

One of the more common dilemmas for any Amazon seller is a question of predictability. It’s not just sales predictions you’re concerned with. Predictability in shipping times. Seasonal interest. And the predictability of your inventory tracking and performance.

Amazon Seller Central doesn’t necessarily make it much easier for you. Making mass changes to your product listings requires some fairly time intensive manual uploading—time you don’t necessarily have to spare remembering search terms, bullet points and descriptions.

Fortunately, there’s an easier way to keep track of your pertinent product listing information. It’s called Amazon’s Product Listing Report. It allows you to download all the relevant product information you need to make informed inventory listing changes. 

If you’re a seasoned Amazon seller, you may have wondered where it went to. It hasn’t necessarily gone away; it’s simply no longer a default feature. But accessing it isn’t quite as difficult as you’d think. In fact, it’s simply a question of customer support.


Steps to Activate Your Amazon Product Listings Report

  1. Log in to your Seller Central account.
  2. Select the ‘Help’ tab in the upper right hand corner. Select ‘Contact Us’ from the dropdown.
  3. Select ‘Your Account > Make changes to your account > Get help with a different account setting issue.’
  4. Open a ticket with Seller Support, preferably via live chatbot.
  5. Once your report is active, go to your ‘Inventory Reports’ in Seller Central. Ensure that one of the options includes ‘Category Listings Report.’ It should now be categorized by product.


  • You must download a different report for each category if you’re selling in multiple ones.
  • The report is only available for 24 hours after activation.


What Information Does A Category Listing Report Contain?

There’s over 100 inventory-critical descriptions contained in Amazon’s Category Listing Report, including:

  • ASINs
  • Brand name
  • Color and color map
  • Currency accepted
  • Department
  • Image URLs
  • Item Type Keyword(s)
  • Key product features
  • Manufacturer’s suggested retail price
  • Parentage (if any) and relationship
  • Product length/height/width and weight
  • Product Description
  • Product ID
  • Product tax code
  • Shipping weight and cost
  • SKU

And just about every other relevant piece of information you need to revise or renew your listing.


Color More Lines provides white glove, global account management of your eCommerce platforms so mission-driven companies can focus on new product development, branding and growth strategies. Find out more at Color More Lines.

Color More Lines – Helping Companies with a Cause

Color More Lines – Helping Companies with a Cause


Welcome to Color More Lines!

We help companies with a cause grow and expand their business on Amazon and beyond. 

Our wicked-smart team of experts know all the ins and outs of how to effectively sell on Amazon.

If you’ve got questions, we’ve got the answers.  

Some of us have been selling on Amazon for 13 years, right after Jeff Bezos literally moved out of his garage.

We know Amazon. Period. So you don’t have to. We’ve got everything covered.

We’ve built a complete process for managing your Amazon FBM (Fulfillment by Merchant) and FBA (Fulfillment by Amazon) operations. This includes customer service, listing optimization, logistics, replenishment, analyst, repricing, and ad management.

We also offer turnkey account management, retainer work, and listing optimization packages.

In fact, we have taken several brands off the Amazon vendor program and optimized them both on the front end (what customers can see) and the back end (what the AI registers). 

But our knowledge and capabilities go well beyond Amazon, too.

We offer multi-channel integration and support, including exposure to eBay, Jet, Walmart, Google Shopping, and Shopify — including EU integration and native language localization.

We can also help you tap into multiple wholesalers and big box stores like Target, Costco, Sam’s Club, and more!

We “color more lines” on your income statement by adding powerful new sales channels and growth to both your top and bottom lines.

Typically we work with companies doing $2M – $50M in revenue or the occasional well-funded startup, if there’s a track record and a compelling product offering. 

We also happily pay ongoing referral bonuses for ideal client introductions.


We Make Clients Happy

When it comes right down to it, we’re in the business of making our clients happy.

Yep, it’s true. It’s why we do what we do.

And this is how we do it (spoiler alert):

Client Experience + Awesome Results = Happy Clients

Basically, if our clients aren’t happy, we aren’t happy. And if our clients aren’t successful, then nobody is happy. That’s why we do everything in our power to help our clients achieve their goals and get results.

Do we help make brands bigger? Yes!

Do we help you launch successful e-commerce products? Of course!

Do we partner with you to drive multi-channel revenue with best-in-class e-commerce marketing, keyword optimization, SEO indexing, and robust risk reduction? For sure!

Do we help you get sales results online? Absolutely!

We provide you with a suite of solutions to meet your individual needs, and our success is defined by your satisfaction.

We know that e-commerce can be overwhelming, especially with the constantly changing landscape and the big players. We make the process simple and easy-to-understand for you, and we treat you like family in our collaborative environment.

When it comes to e-commerce, we do the work, so you don’t have to. We do the heavy lifting, so you can focus on what you do best.

Other companies sit behind the scenes and don’t reveal what they’re doing. But we take you step by step through our processes and strategies so that you know exactly what we’re doing and how we’re helping your business grow.


Giving Back

Not only do we help companies that give back and make a difference in their communities and the world at large, but we also give back.

Helping our clients build their brands is awesome, but that’s not all we do here at Color More Lines. We might be fun-loving tech and business wizards, but we also LOVE to give back! Helping people is what we like to call our bigger purpose.

As a company, we believe we have a special responsibility to set the standard as an employer, business leader, and local resident in our communities and the communities of our clients. It is an integral part of how we think and do business.

Whether we’re volunteering for work projects in our communities or making food and monetary donations to charitable organizations, we’re always looking for ways to give back and help make this world a better place for everyone.


If you like what you’ve read and want to work with us, let us know. Let’s build something great together!

Contact us today to set up your FREE discovery call.

The “Color More Lines” Experience

The “Color More Lines” Experience


At Color More Lines, we are all about our clients—aka YOU.

Your business is our business, and we want to help you thrive and succeed.

We’re dedicated to providing you with solutions that work seamlessly with your team, your products, and your business. We define our success by your results and by your satisfaction.

That’s why we collaborate with you and get to know you, your business, and your goals on a deeper level.

We work right alongside you throughout the entire process to ensure a smooth, seamless experience.

  1. We get to know you FIRST.

We get to know you as a person. Before we can truly serve you and your business, we want to know you on a personal level. You’re the driving force behind your business.

By understanding you, we will better understand your business. And by better understanding your business, we will better understand how to help you succeed and reach your goals.

We want to know what inspires you, what gets your excited, and what brings meaning and purpose to your life.


  1. We get to know your business and your goals.

Your business is an extension of you. You’ve put everything you’ve got into building it, and it’s a huge part of your life.

We want to know all about your journey, your successes, and your challenges.

What inspired you to start your business?

What have been some of your biggest wins?

What have been some of your biggest struggles?

What does your business do well?

What does success look like?

Knowing the ins and outs of your business helps us identify your needs and provide you with the best solutions and support.


  1. We get to know your customers.

Customers are the heartbeat of your business. They are the reason for everything you do. Us too!

That’s why we take the time to understand your customers and how to best serve them.

Who are your ideal customers?

What do they want?

What do they need?

Where are they located?

What kind of feedback have they provided?

What are their pain points?

One of our goals is to delight each and every one of your customers by delivering an excellent experience while making their lives easier.


  1. We collaborate with you directly.

You know your business and your customers better than anyone else. Unlike other companies, we listen to our clients and value their input.

We are experts in our field, but you are also experts in yours. That’s why we combine our expertise to drive success and achieve your goals.

We incorporate your ideas, input, and suggestions into how we reach your customers and take your business to the next level. We do more than partner with clients. We become a team.


  1. We create a customized strategy and plan for you.

At Color More Lines, we don’t believe in cookie-cutter plans and one-size-fit-all options.

Why? Because they do a disservice to both our clients and their customers. Instead, we develop new ideas and new strategies to proactively reach your customers, sell more of your products, and build your business.

By getting to know you, your business, and your goals, we create customized strategies and plans to help you succeed as quickly and efficiently as possible.


  1. We get you EPIC results.

We work on your behalf to get you the results you want.

Recently, we on-boarded a client in March 2018. Their Average Cost of Sales (ACOS) dropped by 40% after working with us for just 5 weeks, with only $50 in additional ad spend, freeing up revenue to grow and scale.

These same efforts also led to a 60% increase in revenue driven by ads during the same period. Then, after 90 days, they had more than doubled their revenue and were raising additional cash to scale faster to meet the newly generated demand. 

It’s results like these that get us excited about helping our clients. We’ve got the knowledge and expertise to add powerful new sales channels and growth to both your top and bottom lines.


If you’re interested in working with us or learning more, contact us to set up your FREE discovery call.

We look forward to speaking with you!