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This article applies to selling in: Japan

Listing a Pre-order Item

You can also get the information from Seller University: Listing a Pre-order Item

Products that have not been released by the manufacturer can be listed on Amazon as pre-order products when the manufacturer has published a release date and products are available in stock.

Important: Pre-orders are subject to the following restrictions. Please read them in full before starting to use pre-orders as you will be bound by these conditions.
  • If buyers add both pre-order products 3 days or more before their release date (pre-order products) and other products to their cart and purchase them together, the order will be split into separate orders for pre-order products and other products. This may result in incorrect shipping costs after the order is split. For more information, see "Split Shipping Costs" under Eligibility, below.
  • If you list the same product as a pre-order product listed by the Amazon Retail Division, Amazon's specified release date will be applied to products listed by other sellers. If the product is not listed by Amazon, your registered release date will be applied as the pre-order release date. The release date for the pre-order is applied only to the seller who added the product. It will not be affected even if another seller has registered a different release date.
  • Pre-order products cannot be sold as Prime. Sellers may be revoked of Prime eligibility if they are found listing Prime products.

Eligibility

  • Pre-orders are orders received for products with a release date set three days or longer after the time of listing. Most categories allow pre-orders from at least three days and up to 365 days in advance of the release date (see "Category Restrictions", below).
  • Products are only eligible if they are shipped by sellers. Fulfillment by Amazon orders are not eligible.
  • In the inventory quantity, set the quantity that can be reserved for the release date. You must comply with any manufacturer-set conditions regarding pre-orders. The product release date is set as the expected ship date, so please set the date from which shipping is possible as the release date. Amazon will not validate the release date you provide with the manufacturer.

Category Restrictions

  • Books are not eligible for pre-order.
  • Pre-orders are allowed up to 365 days in advance of the release date. Toys and Hobbies allows pre-orders as far as 730 days prior to the release date.
  • If you list an item with a release date farther in the future than allowed for that category, it won't show up on the Product Detail Page until the release date falls within the allowed pre-order period for that category.

Split Shipping Costs

  • Shipping costs are split along with the order when a buyer adds both pre-order and other products to their cart and purchases them together.
    • Example: If both pre-order and other products are added to a cart, the order is split into an order for pre-order products and a normal order. If there are several pre-order products, the order will be further split into one for each pre-order product.
  • One shipping cost is set for all items in the cart, and that shipping cost is then divided proportionally between orders after the order is divided. This may result in the shipping cost for an individual order being lower than the actual cost of shipping for that item.
    • Example: A seller sets a shipping cost of JPY 600 per order, and a buyer adds one pre-order item and one normal item together to their cart and purchases the products.

      Order split: The order is split into two orders, one for the pre-order product and one for the normal product (a pre-order order and a normal order).

      Shipping cost split: Following the order split, the shipping costs are split to give JPY 300 for the pre-order order and JPY 300 for the normal order.

      Note: The shipping cost for the order is set at JPY 600 for all items (JPY 300 for the pre-order order and JPY 300 for the normal order).
  • The proportional allocation of the shipping costs is calculated based on the order value (price per product x quantity) after the order is split. In the example above, if the value of the pre-order value was JPY 2000, and the value of the normal order was JPY 4000, the JPY 600 shipping cost would be split into JPY 200 and JPY 400, respectively, based on the order value.
  • See "Shipping Settings to Avoid Splitting Shipping Costs", below, for shipping cost settings that avoid shipping costs being split.
  • The seller is responsible for any shortfall in shipping costs caused by shipping costs being split. By using pre-orders orders 3 days or more before the release date, you acknowledge and agree to this split of shipping costs.

Shipping Settings to Avoid Splitting Shipping Costs

Set a shipping cost per pre-order product to avoid the splitting of shipping costs when several products, including a pre-order product, are added to a cart and purchased at the same time.

  • To set a shipping cost per product for all products: Select and set number and Per Item/Weight-Based in Shipping Settings.Learn more.
  • To set a shipping cost per product for pre-order products only: Create a shipping template that sets a shipping cost per product, and apply it to the pre-order products.
  • To set all shipping costs to free shipping in Shipping Settings,see here.

How Pre-Orders Work


  1. You set a release date for your pre-order product in Release Date on the Offer page.
  2. Validate the release date on the Product Detail Page.
  3. Buyers purchase the pre-order product.

    You will be notified by email that an order has been received for a pre-order product. In Manage Orders, "Pre-order" is displayed as the status. The buyer's Your Order status is displayed as "Unshipped".

  4. Only when the manufacturer has altered the release date can you alter the release date in Offer and the pre-order release date (expected ship date) in Manage Orders.

    The buyer is notified by email of an alteration to the release date.

  5. Finalize the order.

    [Order Finalization Date] = [Release Date] - [Number of Days from Order to Shipment]

    Example: If the release date is 12/30 and the number of days from order to shipment is four business days, then 12/30 minus four business days equals 12/26 for the pre-order finalization date.

    Note: If you set the number of days from order to shipping to 6 or more, the calculation will be based on the longest shipping date within the respective time frame (eg, if you set the number of days from order to shipping to 8, it will be calculated based on 10 business days, which is the longest shipping date for 6-10 time frame: December 30 minus 10 business days). Click here (Japanese) for the maximum shipping date.

    You will be sent an email advising that product shipping is starting. The status in Manage Orders changes to "Unshipped". If the buyer selects COD, CVS, ATM, Internet banking, or e-checks as the method of payment, the buyer will be sent payment notification according to the timing above when the order is finalized. The status in Your Order will change from "Unshipped" to "Shipping soon". At this stage, the order can't be changed or canceled.

  6. The product will be dispatched and a shipping notification will be sent.

    The buyer's Your Order status will change to "Shipped".

  7. Your proceeds from the sale will be reported as a payment.
    Note: If you don't enter a handling time, it will automatically be set to 2 business days, and the pre-order will be finalized 2 business days prior to the release date. You can pack and ship orders immediately, but be sure to comply with the manufacturer's terms for the release date.
Note:
  • When updating listing information by updating the inventory file after listing a product, be sure to enter [Number of Days from Order to Shipment] together with the inventory quantity. When changing [Number of Days from Order to Shipment] after listing a product, the pre-order finalization date received in the last day and the order finalization date received after the change may also change.
  • The ship-to information for the buyer is not displayed until the order is finalized. Use [Number of Days from Order to Shipment] to adjust the time when the ship-to information is retrieved while taking into consideration the time required to ship the product.

Orders for Multiple Items Including Pre-Order Products

When a buyer purchases multiple products including a pre-order item that will not be available for at least 3 days, the pre-order item will be placed in a separate order. You can ship the other items immediately and you can receive payment for them.

Products pre-ordered within three days of the release date are treated as normal orders, and the order will be finalized within 30 minutes of the buyer's purchase. If the buyer has a product other than the pre-order product in the shopping cart, it is processed as a single order and is not divided into a separate order. Products that are not pre-order products must still be shipped within the set [Number of Days from Order to Shipment]. Reserve an inventory of pre-order items for fulfillment on the release date.

Set the Release Date

For the Release Date, you should only use the release date set by the manufacturer for products that are not currently available in the market. Do not use this as the expected stock arrival date for products that are out of stock.

For the procedure on how to change the release date, see "Change the Release Date", below. If you've been notified by the manufacturer that the release date has been changed, you'll need to alter the Release Date in the Offer, and the expected date of shipping of Pre-orders to the new date, respectively.

Set the release date in Add a product

  1. From Inventory, click Add a Product.
  2. Click the Offer tab, and enter the manufacturer's release date in Release Date.
  3. Click the Save and Finish button.

Your product will be available for pre-order on Amazon.

Set the release date in the Inventory file

Enter the manufacturer's published release date in the [release_date] column following the date format specified in the inventory file's Data Definitions tab, usually yyyy-mm-dd.

Note: If you list a product listed by the Amazon Direct Selling Division, Amazon's specified release date will be applied as the release date for pre-ordering. If you specified a release date that differs from that of the manufacturer and the date entered on the detailed product page does not reflect this, contact Seller Support. If the product is not listed by Amazon, your registered release date will be applied as the pre-order release date. The release date for the pre-order only applies to the seller who added the product. It will not be affected even if another seller has registered a different release date.

Manage Pre-Orders

Use Email Notifications

If you have enabled email notifications, the following emails will be sent from Amazon:

  • You will be notified that a pre-order has been received from a buyer.
  • Order finalization date:

    [Order Finalization Date] = [Release Date] - [Number of Days from Order to Shipment]

    Example: If the release date is 12/30 and the number of days from order to shipment is four business days, 12/30 minus four business days equals 12/26 as the pre-order finalization date.

    Note: If you set the number of days from order to shipping to 6 or more, the calculation will be based on the longest shipping date within the respective time frame (eg, if you set the number of days from order to shipping to 8, it will be calculated based on 10 business days, which is the longest shipping date for 6-10 time frame: December 30 minus 10 business days). Click here (Japanese) for the maximum shipping date.
  • If you change the pre-order release date, the buyer will be sent a notification that the delivery expectation has changed.

Validate on the Manage Orders page

  • If you have disabled email notifications, you can monitor pre-orders on the Manage Orders page.
  • On the top-right of the Manage Orders page, click the Pre-Orders quick link to see a list of pre-orders. Details are limited to Order Date, Order ID, Buyer’s contact name, Item Details and Quantity. The ship-to address, address and phone number are not displayed until the order is finalized. You can also use Advanced Search to find pre-orders with more specific search criteria.
  • If you can't ship a pre-order for reasons such as when the inventory can't be reserved, click the Cancel Order button (this will affect the Order Defect Rate). On the day the pre-order is finalized (the date after subtracting the total number of days consisting of the release date plus the handling time) the pre-order status on Manage Orders will change to "Unshipped." Pre-orders show as Pre-Order to the right of the Order ID.

    [Order Finalization Date] = [Release Date] - [Number of Days from Order to Shipment]

    Example: If the release date is 12/30 and the number of days from order to shipment is four business days, 12/30 minus four business days equals 12/26 as the pre-order finalization date.

Note: If you set the number of days from order to shipping to 6 or more, the calculation will be based on the longest shipping date within the respective time frame (eg, if you set the number of days from order to shipping to 8, it will be calculated based on 10 business days, which is the longest shipping date for 6-10 time frame: December 30 minus 10 business days). Click here (Japanese) for the maximum shipping date.

Use Order Reports

  • Pre-orders show in the Order Report when they become ready for fulfillment. Pre-orders are not shown in the Order Report prior to order finalization.

Cancel Orders

  • For pre-orders, if "Unshipped" is showing on the Your Order page, the buyer can change the order quantity, payment method, and delivery address, or cancel the order. If the buyer makes alterations or cancellations, you will not be notified.
  • If the status changes from "Unshipped" to "Shipping soon" or "Shipped", the order can't be changed or canceled.
  • When the status changes to "Shipping soon", the buyer can no longer cancel the order from Amazon, so they may contact you to request cancellation. You can process the cancellation in the same way as any normal order.
  • A part of toy product has a cancellation deadline, which is displayed on its detail page. After the deadline, the order cannot be cancelled. Then, the buyer may contact you to request the cancellation. Please respond that the order cannot be cancelled based on the cancellation rule here.
  • Once the order becomes fulfillable, if you do not ship it within 7 days of the expected ship date, Amazon will cancel the order automatically, the same as for any normal order.

Manage Pre-Order Inventory

To preserve a good customer experience, it is important to manage your inventory for pre-order items correctly.

  • Enable notification emails to monitor pre-orders.
  • Use Inventory Reports to monitor the inventory level remaining from your initial allocation.
  • Use the Amazon Marketplace API to obtain the status of all orders including pre-orders. This is the most timely and accurate way to keep track of all your orders. For further details of the Amazon Marketplace Web service, click here.

Change the Release Date

If the manufacturer changes a release date, you should promptly alter the dates below.


  1. Manage Inventory: Release Date under Offer
  2. Manage Orders: Expected ship date for Pre-orders

Once the order has been finalized, you can't change the expected ship date for the pre-order. If an order can't be shipped because you didn't update the expected ship date, the order will be canceled.

Do not change the release date unless the manufacturer has published a new date. When changing the release date, Amazon will notify buyers of the new release date and delivery expectation.

Note: Amazon monitors this feature for excessive usage. Only make release date changes that have been confirmed by the manufacturer.

1. Update Listing

Update the Release Date of a listing using Add a Product under Manage Inventory, or by uploading an Inventory file. The new release date will be applied to orders received after the update.

2. Update Pre-Orders

Use the steps below to update the expected ship date for pre-orders and notify buyers of the delivery expectation.

  1. Use Advanced Search under Manage Orders to search for the applicable ASIN of pre-orders.

  2. On the search results page, click the Update the release date button to the right of the pre-order you wish to update.

  3. The applicable ASIN pre-order will be displayed by SKU and release date. Click the checkbox next to the optional SKU or release date, and click the Update the release date button. You can simultaneously update all the release dates for pre-orders under the applicable ASIN. To do this, click the checkbox next to Select all.

  4. When the release date of pre-orders is updated, buyers will be notified by email of the new delivery expectation.

Calculating the Number of Days from Order to Shipment

Calculate the order finalization date as follows:

[Release Date] - [Number of Days from Order to Shipment] = [Order finalization date]

When calculating the order finalization date, use business days for [Number of Days from Order to Shipment]. Do not include Saturdays, Sundays, or public holidays when calculating the number of days.

Shipping Speeds

Pre-orders are eligible for all shipping speeds, but Scheduled Delivery is not available for pre-orders.

Payment Methods

  • Cash On Delivery (COD), Convenience Store Payment (CVS), ATM, Internet banking, and e-checks can be used with pre-orders.
  • When using CVS, ATM, Internet banking, or e-check payment, the buyer will be sent the payment notification when the pre-order is finalized. The expected shipping date and expected delivery date are recalculated, and notification is sent to the buyer at the time of payment.

Buyer Order Updates

During the pre-order period, as long as the order is still showing as "Not yet shipped" on the Amazon Your Order page, buyers may update the quantity, ship-to address, and payment method for their pre-order. These alterations will be shown on the Your Orders page, but you won't be notified by email, etc.

Amazon Marketplace Web Service API (Amazon MWS API)

All orders, including those with Pre-order status, are available in the MWS order API. If you already have Amazon MWS authentication information, please consult the Amazon MWS order API documentation. If you would like to acquire a new Amazon Marketplace Web service account, please click here.

FAQ

Manufacturer has changed the release date. What should I do?

You should promptly alter the dates below.

  • Manage Inventory: Release Date under Offer
  • Manage Orders: Expected ship date for Pre-orders

Why my order status does not change from "Pre-order" to "Unshipped" even after the release date has passed?

Here are some of the most common reasons.

  • Amazon has been unable to obtain authorization for the buyer's credit card.
  • The buyer selected convenience store payment but hasn't completed the payment.

You can also get other FAQ from Seller University: Listing a Pre-order Item

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