Shipping Freight to a Cahoot Fulfillment Partner should follow the Amazon FBA Product Prep and Shipment guidelines published in Seller Central. Determining the type of preparation required to ship your products safely to a Cahoot Fulfillment Partner is your responsibility. Failure to comply with FBA product preparation requirements, safety requirements, and product restrictions may result in the refusal by the Cahoot Fulfillment Partner to accept the shipment. The guidelines are designed to ensure safe handling by warehouse staff, transportation by carrier employees, and delivery to customers.
Note: Before you ship inventory to a Cahoot Fulfillment Partner, ensure you have received Shipment Approval from Cahoot in your Advance Shipping Notice.
Inventory Packaging Requirements
The items should arrive at the partner’s location ready to be fulfilled. The partner is only expected to either attach a shipping label directly to the manufacturer packaging or pack the item within the instructed packing material before shipping.
Follow these guidelines for adequate packaging:
Items with expiration dates should have a visible expiration date on each unit displayed in the format MM-DD-YYYY or MM-YYYY.
Units that should be shipped in a set or pack of more than one or together with other products (kits, bundles, multi-packs, etc.) should be pre-assembled in suitable packages (poly bags, etc.) and must be clearly labeled with a barcode unique to the set. For example, a "2-Pack" should have a uniquely distinct barcode compared to a "3-Pack" of the same product.
All packaging including loose sleeves, pouches, and poly bags should be secured with a non-adhesive band or removable tape
Bags that have an opening that measures more than 5 inches when laid flat must have a suffocation warning printed on or affixed to them in a prominent location and in a legible font size
- All products must have SKU Barcodes attached; please see this article for assistance in printing product barcode labels in Cahoot.
Special Packaging Instructions
Some products such as liquids and fragile glass items require extra care and attention while packing for shipment. Please follow these guidelines as applicable to ensure all inventory packaged for shipment and delivery to Cahoot Fulfillment Partners and Customers passes the drop test (see below for details).
Liquid products should be packaged in one of the following materials:
Boxes if the products are double-sealed
Poly bags or shrink-wrap if the products are not double-sealed, or more than 16 oz. even if they are double-sealed
Bubble wrap and/or dunnage if required to pass the drop test
Sharp units should be packaged such that no person handling the items from the initial shipment creation process through to the receiving and final fulfillment processes are able to be hurt by them. Using Boxes and dunnage is best practice. Alternatively, ensure that the packaging covers the sharp points by means of footprint or blister packs, both of which should be securely fastened to the unit.
Fragile units should be packaged to ensure they don’t break at any time during fulfillment. They should be packaged in boxes with cushioning that disallows movement within and ensures they pass the drop test. If not, the second option is to completely wrap them in bubble wrap ensuring product labels/barcodes are on the outside of the bubble wrap.
Plush units must be sealed in poly bags or shrink-wrapped in plastic so that they are not exposed to dust, dirt or humidity.
No product meant for children younger than four years old should have exposed area more than 1” x 1”. Exposed areas should be packed in transparent poly bags or shrink-wrapped.
Apparel, Fabric, and Textiles
Cloth products must be sealed in poly bags or shrink-wrapped in plastic so that they are not exposed to dust, dirt or humidity. Use boxes for material such as leather that can be damaged by plastic. Shoes should be packed in boxes or plastic bags in pairs. They should not be packaged in singles or in groups of more than two.
Jewelry can be packed in boxes or poly bags depending on its original packaging. Jewelry pouches should be packed individually in plastic bags that are transparent. The plastic bags should be of appropriate size to be able to hold the pouch. Boxes made of fabric-like material should also be bagged or boxed. Boxes made of a material that can be cleaned easily do not have to be bagged.
Boxes that have sleeves don’t need to be bagged or boxed if the sleeves are snug enough to not slide off in transit. Otherwise, the labels could be lost and items displaced.
Products smaller than 2 inches
If the products are smaller than 2 inches on any side, then the product label may not stick without going over the side. In that case, the products should be bagged in a poly bag slightly bigger than 2 inches so the barcode is readable with the label on bag.
Pellets, Powders, and Granular
Pellets, Powders, and Granular products are dry goods that are pourable and can cause damage during shipping and when stored. These products should be packaged securely to pass the drop test without the contents of the container leaking or spilling. Items that cannot withstand the drop test on their own must be packaged in poly bags. Items in glass containers should adhere to ‘Fragile Units’ packaging instructions.
Adult products should be bagged in black, opaque bags to prevent offending any person handling the items during fulfillment.
Shipments should include the packaging materials to be used for each shipment from a Fulfillment Partner’s Location, (boxes, cushioning, etc.), along with any packing instructions, if applicable. If you are shipping your inventory to a Cahoot Fulfillment Partner directly from your supplier, you are still required to send packaging materials and packing instructions separately. Fulfillment Partners may use their own packing materials on-hand and in stock if approved by the Seller.
The Drop Test
All products packaged for shipment to Cahoot Fulfillment Partners or Customers must be able to withstand a drop from 3-feet high onto a hard surface without causing breakage, damage, or leaking. It consists of five drops in total:
The following guidelines apply to all product categories:
A brand-new item in its original packaging (certain items like shoes may be re-boxed). Any original manufacturer's warranty still applies in full.
A pre-owned product that was inspected and tested to work and look like new by a qualified supplier/vendor or product expert. The product has minimal to no signs of wear, no visible cosmetic imperfections, and may include relevant accessories that may be generic. The product comes with a warranty offering a replacement or refund within 90 days of purchase if the product does not work as expected.
Used - Like New or Open Box
A product in perfect working condition, with minor damage possible. Original packaging may be missing but instructions for use are included.
Used - Very Good
A product in good working condition but may show some limited signs of wear such as small scratches or cosmetic blemishes. Original packaging may be damaged, or product may be repackaged, and the item could be missing some accessories.
Used - Good
A product in good working condition and functions properly, but it shows wear such as scratches or cosmetic damage from consistent use. Original packaging may be damaged, or product may be repackaged, and it may be missing some parts or accessories such as assembly hardware or an instruction manual.
Used - Acceptable
A product that continues to function properly but is fairly worn with aesthetic issues such as scratches, dents, and worn corners. Original packaging may be damaged, or product may be repackaged, and it may be missing some parts or accessories such as assembly hardware, a USB cable, etc.
Inventory Labeling Requirements
Each unit must have a label that is visible after prep is complete, and it must contain a scannable barcode (ISBN, UPC, EAN, JAN, ASIN or FNSKU), an item description, and the item's condition (see Condition Guidelines). The unit's barcode must not be punched out, marked over, covered, or otherwise obstructed.
Labels containing FNSKU should be created in Seller Central by creating a mock FBA Shipment for the SKU
Multi-pack SKUs (eg. 2-pack, 3-pack, 4-pack, etc.) must have distinct barcodes for each "set", and original manufacturer barcodes must be obscured to prevent confusion
Labels should be printed on a white background
UPC 128 standard should be used for barcodes
Font size should be at least 8 pt but recommended to be more than 12 pt
Fonts should distinguish lowercase letter ‘i’ from upper case letter ‘I’, and between the number ‘0’ (zero) and letter ‘O’
Labels should be at least 1” in height and at least 2” in width
Labels should be applied directly to the individual SKU sold as a single line item unless the surface material of the SKU will not sufficiently support a label
A single inventory label may be applied to a container or bin where single line item SKUs are stored only if the SKU doesn’t have a surface amenable for a label. Sellers should include the box label to be used by Shipping Partners in their inbound shipment.
All products in a box must have matching SKU and condition and must have been packaged together by the manufacturer.
All boxes with the same product must contain equal quantities of that product in each box. For example, a case pack of 24 units must always contain 24 units.
ASIN, Seller SKU, and Item Description must be clearly printed on a label securely affixed to the box containing case-packed products.
In some cases, a manufacturer or distributor may package more than one case pack into a larger box called a Master case or Master carton. Master cases do not qualify as a case pack and must be split at the appropriate case pack level and labelled accordingly.
Cahoot Prep Service
Cahoot Fulfillment Partners may choose to offer product preparation services to one another, but it is not required for participation in the Cahoot Network. When available, fees for the service will be collected by Cahoot and remitted to the Partner performing the service.
Cahoot Prep Service Per Unit Fees
Products that need to be grouped into sets, multi-packs or otherwise assembled, must contain explicit instructions for prep guidance and incur an additional $0.30 per unit.
Inventory that is not properly prepared/labeled may either be 1) prepared/labeled on the merchant’s behalf and invoiced accordingly, or 2) returned to sender, at Cahoot’s sole discretion.
Fees based on the “size” of a product are calculated using Cahoot’s information about the weight and dimensions of that product at the time the fee is calculated.
Standard-size items weigh 20 lb or less and do not exceed 18 inches on its longest side, 14 inches on its median side, and 8 inches on its shortest side. Any item exceeding these dimensions is considered oversize.