Understanding Amazon Shortage Disputes

If you are a supplier or vendor who sells through Amazon, there’s a very good chance you have fallen foul of the occasional shortage claim. Sure, Amazon is a huge retailer, offering phenomenal revenue scales and digital footfall – but they are also one of the strictest when it comes to shortages and disputes.

Over the next few blogs we’ll look a little deeper into the issues around shortages – explaining how they work, and the best ways to dispute Amazon’s claims.


So, what is a shortage dispute?

In the simplest terms, a shortage claim is when Amazon claims that you (the supplier) did not supply as enough units to Amazon to fulfil the Purchase Order. This is often referred to as a PQV shortage claim.

Often this is a point of dispute. Suppliers and vendors argue that they have sent the correct number of units – and that the fault lies with Amazon’s check-in and fulfilment centre systems.

This is where timeliness becomes important.


Timing is everything

When you’re running a busy company, it’s all-too easy to get your calendars confused, or to let your timetables fall into disarray. This is a particular problem when it comes to the timeliness aspect of disputing shortage claims.

Amazon’s dispute window is much shorter than many major online retailers. The optimal time to make a dispute is within 30 days, compared to other retailers’ much more relaxed allowances.

The important thing to be aware of here is the “Invoice Age.” This is the time between an invoice due date and the date you raise your dispute. This period is crucial to how Amazon measure the timeliness of disputes. You should make it the basis of your dispute timetable.

Here is a simple breakdown of the timing of your dispute, and its impact on your success.

  • A shortage within 30-40 after the invoice due date are considered to be “maturing” by Amazon. During this time there is still a moderate chance of winning your dispute.
  • 40+ days after the due date are termed “mature.” There is still a chance of successful dispute, but a small one.
  • Estimates as low as a 5% success rate.
  • After a year, it is impossible to dispute an Amazon shortage charge

As you can see. Getting your timetable in order won’t just help you meet your orders efficiently – it will also be key to recovering lost revenue from incorrect penalties. In the next installment in this blog series, we’ll look more closely at the difference between timely and untimely disputes, and some stats about win rates.

If you have any questions about selling through Amazon. Get in touch. SuperDisty can help make the process smoother, with automated tools that take the pain out of the process.

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