How To

About Distribution Centers

A Distribution Center (DC) is a facility or a storage location from which items are shipped for order fulfillment. For a retailer, their DC may be a Seller-Managed Distribution Center such as their own warehouse, drop shipper, or even retail store or it may be an Externally-Managed Distribution Center.  At this time, ChannelAdvisor supports Multi Channel  Fulfilment by Amazon (FBA) as an Externally-Managed DC.

Click below to download the tip sheet:

Here are a few things to keep in mind when working with Distribution Centers:

  • Each ChannelAdvisor account should be configured with at least one Seller-Managed DC. 
  • ChannelAdvisor accounts can operate in Multi-DC Mode or Single-DC Mode.  Contact ChannelAdvisor Support if you wish to switch to Multi-DC mode.
  • You must create the distribution center in ChannelAdvisor first before uploading and assigning your inventory.
  • For ChannelAdvisor accounts in Single Distribution Center Mode, a specific inventory item (SKU) may be assigned to only one Seller-Managed DC. For example, your SKU 123 is fulfilled from your Dallas TX DC.
  • The same SKU can also be fulfilled from an Externally-Managed DC. For example, your SKU 123 is fulfilled from your Dallas TX DC or your Amazon FBA US account. ChannelAdvisor offers a FBA Warehouse Auto-Flip feature to address this.
  • Some marketplaces (e.g. Amazon) have the concept of a Preferred DC (e.g. Amazon FBA) where special listing and fulfillment behavior will exist.

 

Prerequisites


 

Tasks to Complete


Complete the following tasks:

 

How to Navigate the Distribution Center (DC) Grid

  • Columns in the grid can be ordered to meet your needs by dragging and dropping the columns.
  • Columns with arrows can be ordered either ascending or descending.
  • Columns can be added (visible) or removed (hidden) by using the grid  Columns button.
  • Select columns can be searched using simple queries.
  • The grid can be Reset to the original configuration if needed.  

How to Assign a Distribution Center to a SKU

Follow the steps below to assign a Distribution Center to SKUs:

  1. Select your SKU from the Inventory > All Products view by clicking the hyperlink .
  2. Locate the Distribution Center field on the Edit Item screen (found in the Quantity section of the page).
  3. Select the Distribution Center the SKU should be assigned to from the list.  Click Show All  to see the entire list of available distribution centers.
  4. If the SKU is a parent, you can select to have the Distribution Center assigned to all the child SKU's.
  5. Click Save & Close .

How to Prioritize Distribution Centers

If you have both an Externally Managed and Seller Managed Distribution Center enabled for a specific site, you need to identify which Distribution Center should be used first to fulfill orders.
  1. From  Inventory > Settings > Distribution Center , select DC Settings.
  2. In the Distribution Center Priority section, you can prioritize your Distribution Centers between Externally Managed and Seller Managed for each site.
    1. Preferred Distribution Center Behavior. Some marketplaces will have a "Preferred DC" because listing with that DC is beneficial. For example, the Amazon FBA DC is considered a preferred DC for Amazon because listing as FBA will improve your chances to win the Amazon buy box and will make your listing available to Amazon Prime Members.
    2. As a result, certain behavior is assumed for your Preferred DCs:
      1. Listing Behavior: If there is quantity at FBA, that quantity will always be given first priority for listing on Amazon and your product listings will get created as FBA if there is any quantity. This behavior will result regardless of where your Amazon FBA DC appears in the DC priority list.
      2. Fulfillment Behavior:  As non-FBA orders come into ChannelAdvisor for fulfillment, the system will look to the DC priority list to pick the highest priority DC. If your listing was FBA from the start, Amazon will fulfill this order and then will notify ChannelAdvisor when the order is fulfilled and shipped. If your listing was non-FBA from the start, ChannelAdvisor will evaluate your DC priority to create the fulfillment. If FBA quantity is now available (due to a replenishment or due to Amazon making reserved quantity now available), ChannelAdvisor will use the FBA DC to fulfill if it is listed as the highest priority. In many cases this may be a timing issue and a FBA fulfillment request may be created based on a non-FBA listing if FBA quantity appears during a certain window.

        As a best practice, we recommend that the Amazon FBA DC be put on the priority list below (e.g. at the bottom) of  your other seller-managed DC.
    3. You can also deactivate your Externally Managed Distribution Center if you do not wish to fulfill orders from Amazon FBA for a specific channel. If you deactivate the FBA Distribution Center, we will still check for the quantity from Amazon but will not use the quantity as part of your total quantity. If you do not want ChannelAdvisor to pull in any FBA quantity, you will need to have the FBA DC removed from your account. At this time, please open a case with ChannelAdvisor support to have a FBA DC removed from your account.

 

How to Assign a Distribution Center to Multiple SKUs via the ChannelAdvisor Inventory Upload Spreadsheet

  1. Within your ChannelAdvisor Upload Spreadsheet locate the column titled DC Quantity to indicate a Seller Managed DC for an individual item. 
  2. For each SKU enter the value provided in the Distribution Center Code field when you created the Seller-Managed Distribution Center. If you have quantity at an Externally-Managed Amazon FBA location, you do not need to tell ChannelAdvisor about the quantity. Once the FBA Distribution Center is added and assigned, ChannelAdvisor will automatically detect the FBA quantity directly from Amazon. Please see Designating SKUs for FBA for more details.
  3. See the Inventory Upload page for more information.
Note: The Seller-Managed Distribution Center Codes (e.g. MyWarehouse) cannot be created via the ChannelAdvisor Upload Spreadsheet. You will always have to create the Distribution Center Code via the ChannelAdvisor user interface first. Additionally, the Distribution Center Codes for Externally-Managed DCs are a static list of values determined by ChannelAdvisor and the Amazon FBA locations that our product supports.

 

Deleting Distribution Centers

  1. Navigate to the Distribution Centers page within your ChannelAdvisor account (Inventory > Settings > Distribution Centers).
  2. Find the Distribution Center you would like to delete, and click on Delete in the Actions column.

A Distribution Center (DC) is a facility or a storage location from which items are shipped for order fulfillment. For a retailer, their DC may be a Seller-Managed Distribution Center such as their own warehouse, drop shipper, or even retail store or it may be an Externally-Managed Distribution Center.  At this time, ChannelAdvisor supports Multi Channel  Fulfilment by Amazon (FBA) as an Externally-Managed DC.

Click below to download the tip sheet:

Here are a few things to keep in mind when working with Distribution Centers:

  • Each ChannelAdvisor account should be configured with at least one Seller-Managed DC. 
  • ChannelAdvisor accounts can operate in Multi-DC Mode or Single-DC Mode.  Contact ChannelAdvisor Support if you wish to switch to Multi-DC mode.
  • You must create the distribution center in ChannelAdvisor first before uploading and assigning your inventory.
  • For ChannelAdvisor accounts in Single Distribution Center Mode, a specific inventory item (SKU) may be assigned to only one Seller-Managed DC. For example, your SKU 123 is fulfilled from your Dallas TX DC.
  • The same SKU can also be fulfilled from an Externally-Managed DC. For example, your SKU 123 is fulfilled from your Dallas TX DC or your Amazon FBA US account. ChannelAdvisor offers a FBA Warehouse Auto-Flip feature to address this.
  • Some marketplaces (e.g. Amazon) have the concept of a Preferred DC (e.g. Amazon FBA) where special listing and fulfillment behavior will exist.

 

Prerequisites


 

Tasks to Complete


Complete the following tasks:

 

How to Navigate the Distribution Center (DC) Grid

  • Columns in the grid can be ordered to meet your needs by dragging and dropping the columns.
  • Columns with arrows can be ordered either ascending or descending.
  • Columns can be added (visible) or removed (hidden) by using the grid  Columns button.
  • Select columns can be searched using simple queries.
  • The grid can be Reset to the original configuration if needed.  

How to Assign a Distribution Center to a SKU

Follow the steps below to assign a Distribution Center to SKUs:

  1. Select your SKU from the Inventory > All Products view by clicking the hyperlink .
  2. Locate the Distribution Center field on the Edit Item screen (found in the Quantity section of the page).
  3. Select the Distribution Center the SKU should be assigned to from the list.  Click Show All  to see the entire list of available distribution centers.
  4. If the SKU is a parent, you can select to have the Distribution Center assigned to all the child SKU's.
  5. Click Save & Close .

How to Prioritize Distribution Centers

If you have both an Externally Managed and Seller Managed Distribution Center enabled for a specific site, you need to identify which Distribution Center should be used first to fulfill orders.
  1. From  Inventory > Settings > Distribution Center , select DC Settings.
  2. In the Distribution Center Priority section, you can prioritize your Distribution Centers between Externally Managed and Seller Managed for each site.
    1. Preferred Distribution Center Behavior. Some marketplaces will have a "Preferred DC" because listing with that DC is beneficial. For example, the Amazon FBA DC is considered a preferred DC for Amazon because listing as FBA will improve your chances to win the Amazon buy box and will make your listing available to Amazon Prime Members.
    2. As a result, certain behavior is assumed for your Preferred DCs:
      1. Listing Behavior: If there is quantity at FBA, that quantity will always be given first priority for listing on Amazon and your product listings will get created as FBA if there is any quantity. This behavior will result regardless of where your Amazon FBA DC appears in the DC priority list.
      2. Fulfillment Behavior:  As non-FBA orders come into ChannelAdvisor for fulfillment, the system will look to the DC priority list to pick the highest priority DC. If your listing was FBA from the start, Amazon will fulfill this order and then will notify ChannelAdvisor when the order is fulfilled and shipped. If your listing was non-FBA from the start, ChannelAdvisor will evaluate your DC priority to create the fulfillment. If FBA quantity is now available (due to a replenishment or due to Amazon making reserved quantity now available), ChannelAdvisor will use the FBA DC to fulfill if it is listed as the highest priority. In many cases this may be a timing issue and a FBA fulfillment request may be created based on a non-FBA listing if FBA quantity appears during a certain window.

        As a best practice, we recommend that the Amazon FBA DC be put on the priority list below (e.g. at the bottom) of  your other seller-managed DC.
    3. You can also deactivate your Externally Managed Distribution Center if you do not wish to fulfill orders from Amazon FBA for a specific channel. If you deactivate the FBA Distribution Center, we will still check for the quantity from Amazon but will not use the quantity as part of your total quantity. If you do not want ChannelAdvisor to pull in any FBA quantity, you will need to have the FBA DC removed from your account. At this time, please open a case with ChannelAdvisor support to have a FBA DC removed from your account.

 

How to Assign a Distribution Center to Multiple SKUs via the ChannelAdvisor Inventory Upload Spreadsheet

  1. Within your ChannelAdvisor Upload Spreadsheet locate the column titled DC Quantity to indicate a Seller Managed DC for an individual item. 
  2. For each SKU enter the value provided in the Distribution Center Code field when you created the Seller-Managed Distribution Center. If you have quantity at an Externally-Managed Amazon FBA location, you do not need to tell ChannelAdvisor about the quantity. Once the FBA Distribution Center is added and assigned, ChannelAdvisor will automatically detect the FBA quantity directly from Amazon. Please see Designating SKUs for FBA for more details.
  3. See the Inventory Upload page for more information.
Note: The Seller-Managed Distribution Center Codes (e.g. MyWarehouse) cannot be created via the ChannelAdvisor Upload Spreadsheet. You will always have to create the Distribution Center Code via the ChannelAdvisor user interface first. Additionally, the Distribution Center Codes for Externally-Managed DCs are a static list of values determined by ChannelAdvisor and the Amazon FBA locations that our product supports.

 

Deleting Distribution Centers

  1. Navigate to the Distribution Centers page within your ChannelAdvisor account (Inventory > Settings > Distribution Centers).
  2. Find the Distribution Center you would like to delete, and click on Delete in the Actions column.
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