Amazon Vendor Central Frequently Asked Questions

Vendor Central

How to use Amazon Vendor Central, optimize sales performance, and become a data-driven retailer.

Optimizing your e-commerce sales can be challenging for a brand or business owner. From establishing an Amazon store to leveraging Amazon Advertising products like Sponsored products or Sponsored brands, reaching Amazon customers is critical to success.

This Amazon Vendor Central FAQ covers various performance reports in your Vendor Central account, business metrics, definitions, and areas of opportunity as you optimize sales and operational performance.

What is Amazon Retail Analytics?

Amazon Retail Analytics (ARA) provides reports that let an Amazon Vendor analyze sales and operational data, such as revenue and inventory levels.

All vendors have access to ARA, including manufacturers and authorized resellers.

Amazon Brand Analytics (ABA) is a set of reports that lets you analyze your customers’ buying and search behavior. To access ABA, you must be enrolled in Brand Registry and be responsible for selling the brand in the Amazon store. Brand Registry enrollment is not required for ARA.

You can access ARA and ABA through the Reports menu in your account or the Selling Partner API (see Unlocking Amazon Vendor Central Data With New API) for automation and data unification.

What are Vendor Retail Analytics Reports?

Vendors have access to performance data they need to manage and grow their business with Amazon Retail. Through vendor-specific dashboards, reports, or API, you can monitor your retail KPIs, evaluate your performance, identify operational improvement opportunities, and glean valuable insights to shape your business strategy.

What types of ARA Reports are available?

A collection of specific report types available; Sales, Traffic, Net Pure Product Margin (PPM), Inventory, Catalog, and Forecasting. The Traffic, Net Pure Product Margin (PPM), and Forecasting dashboards are only displayed to manufacturers.

As mentioned earlier, Reports are available via the Vendor Central interface, downloads, or API. See Secret To Unlocking Amazon Vendor Central Reports

Do I have to download Reports manually? Is Vendor Reporting Automation supported?

Automation will automatically generate reports, process, route, and load to your private data destination so you can manage and optimize your sales and inventory. This is accomplished via the Selling Partner API for Vendors.

What are the benefits of Vendor Report Automation?

You can unify your Vendor data to a leading data lake or cloud warehouses like Databricks, Redshift, Redshift Spectrum, Google BigQuery, Snowflake, Azure Data Lake, Ahana, and Amazon Athena for a unified, analytics-ready single source of truth to fuel informed decisions for Vendor insights.

Automated, unified data unlocks the ability to use tools like Google Data Studio, Tableau, Microsoft Power BI, Looker, and Amazon Quicksight.

See Code-free Amazon Vendor Central Software for more information on automation opportunities.

Can I select prior reporting periods in the Amazon reporting interface?

Select Trailing in the Time frame drop-down menu to see trailing period options. Trailing period options include four weeks, 13 weeks, and 12 months. To see the prior period, select Show additional filters.

Regular period options include year-to-date, quarter-to-date, month-to-date, and week-to-date. Select Recurring in the Time frame drop-down menu to see recurring period options. To see year over year, select Show additional filters.

What is the cadence of reporting data availability?

Reports may take up to a week to populate data after a reporting period closes. Amazon targets to update all weekly reports within 72 hours and continuously improves its system to get Vendor reports out faster.

Does ARA support the Lost buy box (LBB)?

The Amazon pricing team no longer supports LBB and can’t provide an LBB metric in ARA until an effective replacement metric is available. An alternative metric, the Lost featured offer (LFO), is in development, but we need to guide when that metric is available.

Are Conversion and average sale prices derived metrics?

Yes, conversion and average sale prices (ASP) are derived metrics, meaning they can be calculated using other metrics already provided in the sales dashboard. Conversion means the number of ordered units divided by glance views. ASP means the amount of shipped revenue divided by shipped units.

Difference between the Manufacturing view and the Sourcing view

All vendors have access to Sourcing views, which will show the sales data for ASINs sourced from a vendor code in the vendor group. If you are a manufacturer, you will also have access to the Manufacturing view, which shows data for any ASIN manufactured by the Vendor, regardless of who sourced the product to Amazon.

There needs to be ASINs in the ARA dashboard. Why?

Here are a few possible reasons:

  • Distributor view: Make sure you’ve selected the correct distributor view. The Manufacturing view shows data for ASIN numbers you’ve made regardless of where they came from. The Sourcing View displays data of ASINs directly imported into your inventory system from suppliers’ codes in your Suppliers’ Groups.
  • No data in the period: A product must have data on one of the metrics in a dashboard to display in that particular DashBoard. For example, a product with stock will show in the Stock DashBoard but not in the Sales Dashboard if there were no sales for that product during the time frame specified.
  • ASIN mapping: Vendors can create an ASIN catalog to map to ARA. When they do so, they must also configure the ASINs to match the ARA report structure. They must wait until the dashboard reflects the changes before seeing them.

Why are there Unowned ASINs in the dashboard?

An ASIN mapping is a likely root cause. If ASINs are correctly mapped to ARA via the correct vendor hierarchies, vendor groups, and attribute setups, they may appear correctly in ARA dashboards. If you’re having trouble with ASIN mappings, contact your retailers or submit an issue through our Support Center, and Amazon will be happy to assist you.

Data does not match the data from the vendor manager or account manager.

You can use Amazon Seller Central (ASIN) level data parity between Amazon Retail Analytics (ARA) and your retailers’ internal systems to report their sales performance. If you want to know if your retailer has reported you for any issues, contact them directly or open a Contact Us request.

Why are some users able to see a particular dashboard while others can’t?

Users who aren’t admins need Financial Reports permission turned on for them to view their inventory. Admins already have all permissions turned on by defau­lt. Only an Administrator can turn off another user’s permissions.

What is the Vendor Forecasting dashboard?

The Forecasting dashboard allows you to identify the future demands for your product so you can plan for production and inventory. It doesn’t promise precisely when your potential buyers may buy your product.

What is the meaning of the different P-levels?

The forecasting tool generates forecasts for an ASIN with different levels of certainty or critical ratios (CR) or probabilities. A higher CR or probability level indicates more significant amounts of inventory. For example, if you set a CR of.80 shows an 80 percent chance that the item will be available within 30 days.

Do Vendor purchase orders match with the units forecast?

The report forecasts unconstrained customer demands, which does not guarantee future purchases. If already on-hand or on-ordered units are available to meet customer demands, these would be considered when issuing buy requests.

What is the Vendor Inventory dashboard?

The Inventory Dashboard let you monitor the health of the products in your store by providing weekly reports. You can quickly identify any issues and take action accordingly.

What is the sellable on-hand unit calculation?

In the Inventory dashboard, sellable on-hand units refer to the product’s physical condition as recorded in our inventory before we account for any outbound units, such as customer shipments, transfers, or removals. The sellable inventory does not necessarily mean that it is available on the Amazon website, only that it is not considered defective.

Why am I unable to view inventory metrics at the daily granularity

Some inventory reports aren’t available daily, so the “Inventory Dashboard” report has been disabled.

Out-of-stock (OOS) metrics are not replenishable out of stock (Rep OOS).

ARA surfaces procurable consider both replenishable and non-replenishable products. However, Rep OOS only looks at replenishable ASINs. Since there are more replenishable ASINs than non-replenishable ones, Rep OOS has fewer opportunities to surface new non-replenishable ASIN

There are no ROOS or unfilled orders in the Sourcing view.

This is normal behavior because the data from ROOS (returns ordered online) and unfilled orders (orders not filled by the manufacturer) are only available for manufacturers. These are ASIN-level data, so they cannot be attributed to any particular manufacturer.

If the vendor is a supplier, they will have access to the Supplier Inventory Management (SIM) views, which show ASIN-based inventory levels for each item sold by the vendor code designated in the vendor’s SIM profile. These views are enabled by default. Retailers can disable them if needed.

What is the Net PPM dashboard?

The Net PPM dashboard identifies which products drive profitability by analyzing net pure product margin (Net PPM). See Automating Amazon Vendor Central Net PPM Reporting

How is Net PPM calculated?

Net pure product margin (PPM) is calculated as shipped revenue minus shipped PCOGS + CCOGS (cost of goods) minus sales discounts, then divided by shipped revenue.

Why is the Net PPM dashboard not visible?

The Net PPM dashboard is commonly offered only to manufacturers.

Are warehouse deals excluded from the net PPM metric?

Your retailers’ internal systems may include “warehousing” deals. Because these deals aren’t included in Brand Analytics, they’re excluded from the metric. Since the vendor does not collect proceeds from Warehouse Deals sales, they do not account for these transactions.

What is the Vendor Sales dashboard?

The Sales Dashboards allow a Vendor to quickly identify opportunities by showing you how your team is doing against others and where they’re falling behind. The performance reports help companies improve their sales process and increase revenue. The data provides a single view of all data related to sales activities.

Do Vendors have access to Sales Dashboards?

Yes, Vendors can see their own offers’ sales reports, including the number of units sold, the total revenue generated by each offer, and the average price per unit.

Are warehouse deals are excluded from sales metrics?

Your retail partner’s internal warehouse deal reporting tool may include Warehouse Deals. However, ARAs do not report Warehouse Deals in their reported metrics.

Because the vendor does not collect revenue from warehouse deals sales, we don’t count them when calculating our gross profit margin.

If you need to know whether warehouse discounts are included in your internal metrics, contact your retailer or open a Contact Us case.

Will shoppers who return products and receive refunds are counted in shipped items and sales?

ARA accounts for customer returns and refunds in shipments and revenues. When a customer returns their product, the date they returned and canceled orders are attributed to them. Based on the original order dates, sales orders are adjusted for customer returns and cancellations.

What is the Vendor Traffic Dashboard?

The Traffic Dashboard allows you to see trends in traffic-related metrics. See How To Use Amazon’s Glance View As A Key Performance Metric.

Why can’t I see the traffic dashboard?

Suppose the vendor is an OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer). In that case, they will have access to their ASIN-specific views, including ASIN-specific data, such as traffic and forecast, for any ASINs they manufacture. Contact retail partners to enable these views.

How does Amazon define a glance view?

GV measures customer traffic and is defined by the number of times someone has viewed the products’ details pages.

How can brands calculate “glance views” (or “looks”)?

When using Brand Analytics reports, GVs are calculated on the ASIN-featured-seller-retailer-product-detail-viewed-by-user-session basis. We expose raw GVs for each session so that retailers can see which sessions were converted by their products.

Because the brand analytics reports show impressions, but the brand analytics metrics don’t include any impression data.

Glance metrics can vary depending on the type of report being run. For example, advertising reports track impression and click data to determine whether an advertisement effectively drove shoppers to the shelf.

However, brand analytics reports measure conversion rates to see if a campaign successfully moved customers to a product detail screen. These two types of reports may differ significantly in calculating glance metrics.

Can you use glances to calculate conversions?

Conversion is the percentage of times a glance view was converted into a sale. It is a derived metric calculated by dividing ordered revenue by glance views.

What is the Vendor Catalog dashboard?

The Catalog Dashboards let you access the latest product details for your items.

How do you access the Catalog dashboard?

This Dashboards module is available to all vendors who have access to ARA regardless if they have additional permissions. Vendors can choose between two views: the manufacturing and sourcing views. Only manufacturers will see the manufacturing tab. Retailers will not see any tabs unless they are a retailer.

Some people don’t see the manufacturing view in the catalog dash­board, while others can’t.

All users will have full access to the Sourcing View if they have access to ARA.

Only administrators can view manufacturing reports for their accounts.

Admins will already be given all permissions by default. An administrator can only grant or remove permission to another user.

What is the Catalog dashboard update frequency?

The reports will automatically refresh every time an updated ASIN attribute becomes available. You cannot manually change the report’s refresh interval.

Do Vendors have access to Amazon Advertising performance reports and data?

Amazon Vendors have direct access to their digital marketing analytics data for each Amazon Marketplace they advertise. The data can be used for Amazon SEO efforts, campaign sales diagnostic, brand lift analytics, and other performance analysis. See Amazon Vendor Central Advertising.

What is Seller and Vendor Brand Analytics?

Brand Analytics reports in-depth cover sales, marketing, operations, customer behavior, and enhanced trends to enable you to make more informed business decisions, assess your market share, identify new opportunities, and monitor factors that affect sales. See Why Amazon Brand Analytics Fuels Growth

Data is generally available in Brand Analytics within 72 hours of the close of a given period.

The key features of Brand Analytics are:

  • Search: See how customers (in aggregate) find your products and other products on Amazon, including each product’s relative search popularity, click share, and conversion share.
  • Market basket analysis: Learn what other products are bought along with your products.
  • Repeat purchase behavior: This shows the number of orders received for each product or brand and the unique customers who placed the orders.

Brand Analytics is located under the Reports tab. This feature is only available if you own your brand and are responsible for selling the brand on Amazon. You must also be internal to the brand and not a third-party company supporting the brand.

If you don’t have access to Brand Analytics, you have not been identified as a vendor who meets the Amazon Brand Registry criteria. You must be a brand owner for an Amazon Vendor Central ( or Amazon Seller Central) account.

Should I use the Amazon Retail Analytics API or the legacy EDI?

APIs are the preferred integration solution compared to EDI and will offer more long-term functionality. APIs have lower infrastructure and development costs relative to EDI, are easier to use, do not require specialized knowledge, and enable efficient near-real-time processing.

Benefits of the SP-API vendor retail analytics report types include:

  • Source data for the API reports are from the same source used by Amazon retail category teams
  • Data parity across API reports and Amazon Retail Analytics dashboards in Vendor Central
  • Enabling integrators to specify and request data from different time range aggregations, such as daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, yearly, and trailing four weeks
  • Easy-to-access data backfills for historical data

Openbridge is a cloud-based Amazon Vendor Central software tool designed specifically for Amazon Sellers and Vendors. It allows you to simultaneously automate API data feeds across multiple accounts, monitor sales performance across all channels, and automate inventory management and shipping processes.

Do you need a verified Amazon Vendor Central Partner? Looking for data automation?

Sign up for a 30-day free trial of our Vendor Central Software automation.

Amazon Vendor Central Frequently Asked Questions was originally published in Openbridge on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

from Openbridge - Medium