Today we’re discussing our next Seller Central Tip in this series: Tip #5 – Fixing Stranded Inventory.
For a recap of our Seller Central Tips so far, here are the previous posts:Tip #1 How to Check if “Returned” Items are Actually Returned to FBA Tip #2 How to Get Reimbursed for Unfulfillable Inventory Tip #3 How to Handle FBA Inbound Shipment Problems Tip #4 How to Check for Reimbursable Lost Items
“Stranded inventory” refers to your items at an FBA warehouse that do not have an active offer on the Amazon website. We regularly check our inventory to see if any items have popped up in our stranded inventory list, and we take action according to the options provided in the drop-down menu beside each item.
Staying on top of your stranded inventory is important for a couple of reasons:
- If inventory is stranded, it is not active and available to be purchased on the Amazon website. Not only are you not making any money from sales of that inventory, but you also are paying storage fees on it. Not good!
- Stranded inventory is one of the factors Amazon uses to calculate your IPI (Inventory Performance Index). If your IPI falls below a certain threshold, Amazon could limit the amount of storage space you are allowed to use at their FBA warehouses. For more information on the IPI score, check out this blog post.
How to handle stranded inventory:
Follow these steps:
- Log in to Seller Central
- Under the “Inventory” tab click “Manage Inventory.”
- In the list of links along the top of this page , click “Inventory Dashboard.”
- If you have stranded inventory, you can then click “Fix Stranded Inventory.”
- Note: If you do not currently have stranded inventory, you will not see this option. That’s good news!
The stranded inventory page brings up a list of all your items currently at an FBA warehouse that are stranded and do not have active offers on Amazon. When we first began cleaning up the problems with our inventory on Seller Central after allowing them to accumulate for several months, I (Rebecca) brought up this list and discovered we had six pages (six pages!!) of stranded inventory, requiring several hours of work to sort through the mess and take the appropriate actions. Now, I look at the stranded inventory every few days and never find more than a couple of items at a time that need to be addressed.
In the “Status” column, you’ll see a few different reasons why your inventory might be “stranded.” The statuses we’ve encountered include Restricted ASIN, Brand or Item Qualification Required, and Listing Error. There might be others that we’re unaware of, but these are the ones we’ve personally had to deal with. If you have experience with other statuses, please leave a comment below, and tell us how you dealt with it. Now let’s look at each of these statuses and their implications.
Stranded Reason – Brand Qualification Required
One possibility for stranded items is that that item requires brand approval before you can sell it. To fix these stranded items, you have a couple of choices:
- Apply for and receive approval for the brand or item by using the “Add a Product” option under the “Inventory” tab in Seller Central. Once you receive approval, you should see the option to “Relist” the item in the drop-down menu of actions on the stranded inventory page. (For more info on getting approval to sell restricted brands, check out this blog post.)
- If you cannot receive approval to sell the item, you will need to create a removal order and have the item returned to you. You can then sell the item on another platform like eBay or sell it at your next garage sale.
Even if you have already received brand or item approval before you send an item in to an FBA warehouse, sometimes items will go into stranded inventory and state brand qualification is required. In these instances, we’ve been able to immediately choose the “Relist” action and the item moves out of stranded. Hopefully this is just a glitch that Amazon will soon fix.
Stranded Reason – Listing Error
Sometimes there’s a problem in the Amazon system that causes an item to be listed as stranded and inactive for no reason that we’ve been able to figure out. In these cases, the item will show up on the stranded inventory page with a status of “Listing Error.” When this happens, we chose “Relist” from the “Actions” column and fill in the appropriate information in the “Offer” tab of the Amazon product page. After you submit the info, the item should move out of your stranded inventory and back to active status within a short period of time.
Stranded Reason – Restricted ASIN
On occasion an ASIN will become restricted after we send it to FBA, and these inventory items will show up in our stranded inventory. So far the only way we’ve been able to take action on restricted ASINs is to create a removal order and have the item returned to us. In fact, these restricted ASINs are often completely removed from the Amazon catalog, so it is impossible to relist them – if you click on the product’s link in the stranded inventory page, it takes you to a page on Amazon with one of those cute dogs saying the page cannot be found.
Note: The help info for restricted ASINs does say that you can file an appeal to be able to relist an ASIN. Unless you have gone pretty deep on an item that becomes restricted, it’s probably not the best use of your time and effort to try to appeal the restriction. It’s a bummer when it happens, but just create the removal order, sell the item somewhere else, and move on to more profitable Amazon inventory.
Stranded Reason – Please Review For Quality Issues
This reason comes up when Amazon notices something wrong with the listing you’re selling. It’s possible that the bullet points are mentioning something that now goes against Amazon’s guidelines… or maybe a pair of shoes has some problems with consistent sizing on the listing’s size drop down options.
There are many reasons a listing might have quality issues. To find out what the issue is, click on the “Edit Listing” option and then look for the red triangle with the exclamation point in the middle. That is the tab that needs updating. Find out what the listing needs, and then update that listing with the correct information. If the issue is the listing needs consistent shoe sizes, here is a walk-through video on how to update a shoe listing.
These are just a few of the issues we’ve encountered with stranded inventory. Sometimes the fault is ours, sometimes it’s a glitch in the system, sometimes it’s unexplainable. Regardless, you’ll want to check your stranded inventory and see if there are items that you can relist and make available for purchase — inactive listings do not bring any profit!
Have you encountered these or other problems in your stranded inventory list? We would love to hear from you in the comments below.
*This post was updated in 2019
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Dave C says
I also just recently discovered that I had 4 pages of Stranded Inventory. After going back and forth with Amazon, they told me how to fix most of them by using the “Add a Product” button at the top of the page, filling in the information as you normally would, but making sure to use the “Merchant SKU” that shows on the Stranded Inventory page for the item. Most of my Stranded Inventory had a status of “Incomplete” which wasn’t completely covered in the very informative blog post above. My listings became Active within about 15 minutes or so and I actually sold a few of them within hours. Well worth the time to fix them. Hope this helps!
Excellent addition to the topic, Dave! I really appreciate you sharing your experience with us!
Interesting… my fba seller account doesn’t have a “fix stranded inventory” link. Not sure what that means yet. Since it says “new” in the screen shot I would have to assume it has not been released for everyone. Strange because we have been fba sellers for 3 years.
Good news, Christian! If you do not see the Fix Stranded Inventory tab, you do not have stranded inventory! Here is the link on amazon to confirm what I just told you: http://www.amazon.com/gp/help/customer/display.html/?nodeId=201438300
Lol. Thanks. I was wondering if that might be the case. They keep adding new features.
Thanks for the article. In looking at my list, I have a few that only have two choices when I click on Action: “Learn to Create New Listings” and “Create Removal Order”. I don’t get an option to edit the listing or to convert it to FBA. What do you do with those?
Thanks for your help.
If there is not an option to edit or convert to FBA, then I usually create a removal order and have it mailed back to me. Then I’ll send it back to Amazon to tray again to sell it. That process usually costs me less than $1 and about a weeks worth of wait time.
Base on FBA removal order fees, it costs USD 0.5 per item. How can the process costs you less than $1?
Please let me know. Also, Can I delete listing then relist my products with new SKU?
Thanks for your help.
Stephen Smotherman says
Because $.50 to remove the item, and about $.50 to send it back to Amazon.
David Coombes says
If you look on the left hand side you can select all the items and then in the dorp down next to that there is the option to convert to FBA. My account was hacked and loads of products listed. In the process of cleaning it up all my FBA items ahve become stranded and I’m jsut trying to figure out how to fix it – I think they may have acutally deleted the listing page :(. Anybody come across something like this before?
Andrew Cassinelli says
I have a large number of items that are marked as Incomplete, and the drop down menu options are “Learn To Create New Listings” out “Create Removal Order” just like Christine.
As she pointed out, there is no link to convert to FBA. But you can select the check box on the left and click the Actions button at the top which DOES have the option to “Change to FBA”. I then chose ” Convert Only” since this is inventory I had already sent to Amazon.
Great solution, Andrew!
Experiencing this right now. Why does some inventory arrive in FBA in this state?
I tried the following and now seem to be really stuck.
Converted the stuck SKU back to Merchant fulfilled. Then I tried to delete the listing. Doing this gave me the options to create a new listing, but the problem is now it’s saying I can’t create the listing as the button links to an error page. You’d think this should be much simpler?
And as a professional seller why is Amazons support so sucky?
Help would be much appreciated 🙂
It can be very frustrating. All we can do is all we can do. After a while we need to create a removal order and maybe try to send it back in again later. You can also open up a ticket with Amazon and ask them what they think you should do.
Joshua W says
Thanks for the this post Stephen. First time I’ve had Stranded Inventory was tonight. The two items status was Inactive(Out of Stock), yet when I checked my inventory, the listings were set to FBA. Further research by clicking on the hyperlink 0 on quantity showed me that they were warehouse damaged, just not showing up on the damage report yet. So that was good to know since AZ will reimburse for warehouse damaged goods.
Raquel Young says
Good post , I recently face a strange problem on amazon FBA Stranded Inventory , I have today maybe 25 in this category , however I am new FBA seller but something unusual happen.
I have being selling those clothing in the same listing for about 3 years, now someone have the same listing with very cheap price than the one that I use to sell, Amazon put those listing to stranded inventory but not for sell in the listing that I used to but to new listing,
I feel that is not right and I am feel so upset about that.
I may remove all those listing , What do you guys think?
Open up a ticket with Amazon and ask them. Maybe they can help you.
Regarding “Incomplete Stranded Inventory” I was told to just to just fill in the missing information and update. My items are books, and if I can’t hold the book in my hands, I’m not going to guess at the condition or price (because these items have been listed once and now reside at FBA). So I had 250 sent back to me to relist (FREE TG). They came back to me in such poor condition, I could only relist about 10% of them. Really makes me wonder what happens to items sent to FBA AND in what condition do my buyers get them????
Very frustrating Spring with FBA!
I hear ya. With the ride all of our products take with UPS and the conveyor belts at Amazon, it’s a wonder they arrive in decent condition at all.
Dawn Jasionowski says
How has your luck been in relisting stranded inventory that you had returned to you by Amazon? I want to try to relist several items that had no obvious problems. but I’m afraid they’ll just be stranded again.
I’ve been able to list most that were stranded… others I realized why they were stranded that made sense (they were restricted).
Has anyone had the issue where your items are showing Inactive (Out of Stock) but you do have available inventory showing? I sent a new shipment to Amazon and now most of this shipment is showing as Inactive so I know they are not returns. I have tried to relist these items but it does not work. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
Sometimes Amazon will move inventory from one warehouse to another. When the items are being moved, they will show as inactive in your inventory.
A number of books from the first shipment I sent in to FBA are listed as “Inactive (Out of Stock)” with a quantity available of “0”. I understand that listings take awhile to become active, so this makes sense.
However, a couple books from the same shipment are listed as “Active” with “0” copies available. Since the books haven’t sold yet, I would expect the quantity available – again, given that the listings are active – to be at least “1”.
Am I correct in thinking that I may have a problem that needs to be fixed?
If this is still the case, I’d open up a ticket with Amazon and ask them what’s going on.
Well, the “Manage FBA Inventory” page turns out to be more enlightening than the “Manage Inventory” page. A few items that I sent in are showing as reserved. Apparently just being moved between warehouses.
Hi, I’ve been selling for months without an issue. Suddenly I have 60 books listed as incomplete. The message I get when I click on incomplete is “Sorry, the SKU you have provided doesn’t match any of our records”. My options are to relist or removal order. I want to relist them since they’re already in a warehouse, but when I click on relist, it takes me through the steps of shipping a new item. Can you help?
It sounds like there was a glitch in the processing of your inventory. This happens sometime when using an inventory processing software. It’s super rare, but occasionally happens. When this happens to me, the only option I have left is to remove the inventory, send it back to me, and then send it back to Amazon again. It’ a pain, but better than them sitting in stranded inventory for live.
Thanks for your prompt response. I was afraid it was going to mean sending them all back. Oh well. I did have a glitch with inventory lab, so this isn’t totally unexpected.
Hi, I have 50 books that are stranded inventory. The status column says active and available quantity is 1 for all these books. The only option on the drop down menu is create removal order. Is there a way to fix this and not have my items sent back to me?
Open up a ticket with Seller Central and ask them. If there is no help there, then create a removal order.
What did you end up doing to solve this problem? I’m encountering it now and have opened a ticket with amazon a few days ago but no reply.
Louise Hadfield says
As I sell only in the Beauty category I’ve encountered the dreaded HAZMAT status many times. Amazon actually issue a form which you can complete to certify exemption from HAZMAT requirements because finished cosmetics products (non-aerosol, non-flamable and non-perfumes) are exempt. I also recently had a stranded inventory problem with a product they claimed contained a banned ingredient. After much too and for-ing including obtaining the full list of ingredients from the manufaturer they finally agreed to reinstate the product. If I cut my losses on HAZMAT all the time I would be out of business.
As soon as I desptached the items to warehouse, all items got received by them and qty. has also been properly updated. But all of them are inactive(out of stock). I’ve tried to relist them several times but still got no success. What can I do?
You may be restricted from selling those items.
Glad to find this article, thanks! Sometimes I get inventory that Amazon says is inactive due to potentially high prices, even though I price match with others’ active listings on the same item. Any advice, or do I needs must lower my prices? This is very annoying. Thanks!
To fix this you need to log in to Seller Central and find that item in your inventory… and then set you high and low prices… and that will stop the “high price error” notifications from happening.
I am new to FBA and sent in several items. They are all showing as Active. But at the same time they are all in Stranded Inventory. The only option on all of them is to remove inventory.
Any thought on what I may be doing wrong?
Cindy Miller says
I have the exact same situation, Tom!! My very first shipment and everything is listed as Active but all are in Stranded Inventory with the same “Create Removal Order” as the only option. Hopefully someone can help with this!
Same issue here! Though I got this issue with my second shipment.
I am selling dvd’s on amazon since 2014. i closed my old account and open a new account. i send stock to fba and what i found is i have at least 300 items in fix stranded inventory. can someone help me guide me through best possible solution to make that inventory active on amazon fba. I just sell dvd’s region 2 uk only. Nobody on amazon seller support is helping me and giving me the right information what they want from me.
I just got one option which is create removal order. can someone help.
Stephen Smotherman says
New accounts have to get approved to sell DVDs. The only option you have is to seek approval to sell and hope for the best. Then you can try these methods to eventually get approved: https://www.fulltimefba.com/getapprovednow. If you can’t get approved, you’ll need to create a removal order until you can get approved. Sorry for the news.
This is very helpful. I had some inventory go to the stranded side and some we’re items that didn’t need approval to sell when I shipped them in and then required approval after the inventory had been there. Some I was able to get auto approved to sell, but the relist option didn’t show. I just searched the items in my inventory and edited the price by a little bit and then they became active.
tonya jarkiewicz says
I am new to amazon and sent 3 boxes to 3 different places last week. They all showed up as “receiving” the other day. Yesterday they still show receiving but now they are all under the stranded inventory. They all show “verify your account status” and on the dropdown menu next to that, it does not give me any options to do anything else. They are all shoes and I used the UPS code to track and had amazon label them for me. I have checked my settings and I have it set for MWS service: enabled…Who preps: merchant…Who labels: Amazon…Barcode preference: Manufacturer…My account info shows selling as a professional and that I am registered. What am I missing??? Please help
Stephen Smotherman says
I’m not sure. Open a help ticket with Amazon and they can help you best.
Burak Tayfa says
We have a bit different issue. Under Stranded reason at Fix Stranded Inventory, it says “Please address your account status issues before proceeding.”. Do you have any idea how to solve this?
Stephen Smotherman says
This means you have bigger issues you need to address first. Go to Seller Central and look under the Performance tab to see each of the possible issues you might need to fix first. If that doesn’t help, then open a ticket with Amazon.
cherryflor semblante says
Hi Stephen, good day! I would like to seek solutions on how to fix stranded inventory. it was stranded due to listing error. I have tried different video tutorials and also I have tried the articles stated above but it does not work with my amazon account. I have tried to relist the items but I cannot find relist option, the only available option is create removal. Can I ask you some ways to solve this problem and activate all those stranded inventory items without applying create removal? hoping for a positive response from you. thank you so much.
Stephen Smotherman says
Have you tried asking Amazon to help you understand why it’s stranded? Contact them and they can best help you: https://www.fulltimefba.com/openaticket I wish you all the best.
I’m a little new to FBA, so apologies if this seems like a newbie question. I currently have 191 stranded inventory items.These 191 inventory are already located fba storage.i was not able to relist as FBA produscts.when i relist it is seems a new listing and it needs a new shipping but i do not need a shipment my items are in the FBA storage….
but I think what happened is that I accidentally deleted the listings for these items in my inventory before Amazon received the items and made them available for sale. So how do I go about getting these stranded items relisted? I’ve tried following the instructions on the stranded inventory page, but I’ve had no luck so far. I just can’t figure out how to relist these items in such a way that the system understands I’m relisting items that Amazon has on hand. Any help would be greatly appreciated!
Stephen Smotherman says
Have you opened a ticket with Amazon and asked them how to best fix this? If that doesn’t find you a solution, then I’d create a removal order and have all the items returned to you, then send them in on new SKUs.
Frank Zhou says
I reveived e-mail from Amazone about customer complain ” sold used itme as new” and my listing was inactive in the same time. I send my information to Amazon and they decided we can continue offer item on my ASIN.
The problem is we get stranded inventory the same time.The stranded reason is “Qualification required (Item). We have no way to fix this issue and can not get out listing active again. Can you instrcuc me how to solve this problem?
Stephen Smotherman says
Have you opened up a ticket with Seller Central to ask them? They will be able to best help.
Were you able to fix your issue? I am having the same exact problem and have been denied by Amazon without given a reason
ANGEL RUIZ ALONSO says
I have over 100 items in stranded inventory with these different reasons:
CREATE A NEW LISTING 53
MISSING SKU 58
INVENTORY ERROR 26
Have you faced this error and if so, how have you’ve fixed them?
Stephen Smotherman says
Open up a ticket with AMAZON. There seems to be a lot going on with your inventory that they could explain better.
My items are stranded and the reason is account not fully onboarded. I was already verified and approved to sell.
Stephen Smotherman says
Open up a ticket with seller central and see what the issue is to get this fixed.
I am experiencing the same issue. Would you be able to share what worked to get your inventory back?
5 days after account verification is passed, inventory is still stranded due to account not fully onboarded.
Thank you for your great info. Under my “Fix Standard Inventory”, It has a reason “Account not Fully Unboarded”. Do you know what should I do?
Also, the other thing is I ordered from Alibaba and my supplier shipped 14 Boxes of my product, out of that 14 boxes, only 3 boxes had arrived in the Fulfilment center so far. Is this normal? They shipped it by the sea I think with UPS.
Thank you so much for your time.