[Crew Review] SEC probes Amazon’s use of 3P seller data

Victories 

After Congress requested the DOJ to look into Amazon’s alleged use of third-party seller data for its own advantage, the Securities and Exchange Commission is doing the same.

What does this mean for Amazon?

 

Amazon Top Terms

Check out the terms that are making $$$ last week! This data was taken from Amazon between March 20th and April 2nd



“Cross waist workout shorts” are viral on Amazon, and some of these products have already seen a drastic increase in their sales, selling 2,150 units per day in the last few days.

This keyword hasn’t been the only top term that has climbed on our list for becoming a viral trend. "Stoney clover dupes" ranks #5 in today's top movers as many Amazon shoppers are obsessed with these makeup bags, especially after they were discounted.

 

Smalls’ Not-So-Small Feat

It’s not an April Fools' joke. Amazon workers have finally voted to unionize on April 1 at a New York facility known as JFK8. The move was headed by Chris Smalls, a former employee of the Staten Island warehouse, who was fired after he organized a walkout two years ago.

Chris Smalls (middle) || Source: BBC News

The independent organization, called the Amazon Labor Union (ALU), won with 2,654 votes as opposed to 2,131 who were against it. Despite Amazon’s efforts to prevent unionization, Smalls and the rest of the volunteers were persistent. 

ALU already has a list of demands that include higher pay and better working conditions. However, an Amazon spokesperson said that they may still challenge the win.

Meanwhile, plans to block words relating to unionization from an internal Amazon messaging app for workers are leaking. This will allegedly include terms such as “pay raise,” “restrooms,” and “prison.” Amazon, unsurprisingly, denies this, saying that only offensive or harassing terms will be blocked.

 

Returns Made Easier

In order to ensure a seamless customer returns experience, Amazon launched the Returns Provider Program. This is designed for international sellers selling in the US who have no US domestic return address. It helps them manage seller-fulfilled returns by making it easier to connect with service providers in the United States.

Amazon clarified it will not be a party to the contract between the seller and the service providers. It simply provides choices that the company has examined and determined to have adequate means to meet the needs of its third-party partners.

While this may be helpful to some sellers, it’s ultimately for customers to have a better overall experience with the marketplace, a part of Amazon’s growth strategy.

 

Courting New Sellers: Walmart vs. Amazon

Since the pandemic, Walmart has doubled down on its efforts to attract more entrepreneurs. In 2021, it allowed non-US vendors to sell on the platform and has even grown faster online compared to Amazon.

This year, Walmart launched New-Seller Savings, which gives the following benefits:

  • 50% discount on commission rates for the first 90 days for those who submit their application by May 31
  • 10% off on fulfillment fees for those who apply to Walmart Fulfillment Services (WFS) and inbounds at least one item to a Walmart Fulfillment Center by June 30
  • 90 days of free storage on up to 10,000 units

Amazon, on the other hand, is offering the following to new sellers who get the Professional plan:

  • A 5% bonus on up to $1 million in eligible branded sales (up to $50,000 in bonus value) or for 1 year after eligibility is determined, whichever comes first
  • $100 in credits for Amazon Transparency
  • $200 in credits for Amazon Vine
  • $100 in credits in inventory shipping fees for using the Amazon Partnered Carrier program or $200 in credits in fulfillment fees for using Amazon Global Logistics
  • Auto-enrollment in FBA New Selection, providing free monthly storage, liquidations, and return processing for eligible new-to-FBA ASINs.
  • $200 in promotional clicks for using Sponsored Products 

 

Etc.

Edit the tweet. After Elon Musk became Twitter’s largest shareholder and got a seat on the Board, the company is now working on an edit button. Soon, you’ll be able to fix that typo.

Internet from space. SpaceX may be a few years ahead of Bezos’ Project Kuiper, but the latter is planning to catch up by having 83 launches over a five-year period.

Death and taxes. Amazon investors think the company needs to be more transparent about its taxes. The SEC agrees.

 

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