Your Crucial Guide to the Amazon Reference Number for Hassle-Free Shipments

by Tomer

December 13, 2021

For Amazon FBA sellers, smooth shipments to fulfillment centers are crucial to avoid delays in inventory replenishment. This keeps an Amazon store running without going out of stock and disappointing customers.

One of the most important responsibilities of FBA sellers is to organize with a shipping company how their inventory properly arrives at Amazon’s fulfillment centers.

Because sellers are most likely not present at fulfillment centers when Amazon receives shipments, they need to understand the value of the Amazon reference ID number.

This article will discuss what Amazon reference number ID is for, its importance, how to locate it, and what to look for in a logistics company!

Read on to see a special offer from us as well!

What is the Amazon Reference Number?

amazon reference number

The Reference ID number is a unique, alpha-numeric code provided by Amazon. It identifies each shipment of inventory to an Amazon fulfillment center throughout the entire shipping process.

With this ID number in hand, sellers provide it to their shipping company when they are coordinating a time slot with a fulfillment center to receive shipments.

Why is the Amazon Reference ID so Important?

Amazon’s logistics process is a huge factor in why they are able to offer Prime Delivery to their valued customers.

Providing the Amazon Reference ID to the shipping company allows them and the fulfillment centers to stay on schedule. Shipping companies have other clients to take care of, and Amazon’s fulfillment centers have other sellers to receive and manage shipments from, too.

Take note that Amazon’s warehouse workers don’t simply receive a seller’s shipments, but they also sort units, put them in the system, and make them available for sale.

Amazon is able to ship out millions of orders every day through its efficient logistics system, and sellers have a responsibility to do their part to make it easier for them. It prevents confusion, wasted time, and congested fulfillment centers.

How Can I Locate the Amazon Reference ID?

amazon reference number
  1. Log in to Seller Central and access the main toolbar
  2. Hover over Inventory and click on Manage FBA Shipments
  3. Under Shipments, click on the shipment you would like to access the Reference ID number for
  4. Under Prepare Shipment, there is a summary with all shipment information
  5. Provide to your shipping company all information underneath Shipment Name/ID, which includes Name (contents of shipment), ID, and Amazon Reference ID.

Copy and paste this, do not type it out manually. This way, you completely avoid providing erroneous information.

In addition to the Reference ID, you may have noticed there is also a shipment ID (listed as “ID” on Seller Central). 

The difference between the two is that the shipment ID is solely for Amazon’s internal systems. It helps them track the location of a seller’s inventory within fulfillment centers, as well as be aware of the contents of the shipment without even opening the box.

Amazon’s Shipment Requirements for Receiving Inventory

Amazon has certain quality standards for shipments received at fulfillment centers to make sure that they are able to maintain their rapid system of making your products available for sale.

Each seller needs to provide accurate box information with the following:

  • Unit quantity of each SKU per box
  • Expiration dates of products (if applicable)
  • Weight of box
  • Dimensions of box

Talk to your logistics company and make sure that this information is accurate and the labeling is not tampered with, damaged, or removed. Also, make sure you can trust that the logistics company won’t damage the boxes because Amazon rejects these shipments, causing delays.

All of these are especially important for FBA sellers who source products from overseas and are not physically present to double-check the accuracy of the labeling before the shipment is received by Amazon. You can watch Amazon’s YouTube video on how they receive inventory here.

Important:  Failure to provide accurate box content information may result in suspension, and a manual processing fee will be applied. Read more about this in Amazon’s Seller Central article here.

Related Reading: What is Amazon FBA: Complete Amazon FBA Guide in 2023

Checklist for a Quality Freight Forwarder

amazon reference number

Choosing the right freight forwarder the first time can be a fast track to a successful store, because it will save you from headaches, while saving your time and especially money.

A good quality freight forwarder includes (but is not limited to):

  • Experience in working with Amazon FBA sellers
  • Accreditation at reputable associations and can provide references
  • Clear communication and timely updates
  • Establishment of good personal connections with clients
  • Clear Terms and Conditions and Insurance
  • Additional services such as 3PL, labeling, document services
  • Expertise in dealing with customs
  • Competitive pricing
  • High handling capacity
  • Experience in shipping the specific kind of goods you want to sell on Amazon

A company’s good qualities may not always be advertised on their website – talk to freight forwarders about specific details you are looking for. Make sure you are working with a logistics company that understands Amazon’s operations, because all e-commerce platforms are run differently.

I personally understand what Amazon sellers need to run a smooth business. After a long time of selling on Amazon and working with 10 different freight forwarders, I finally found the right one and recently partnered with them.

Check us out for Reliable Amazon FBA Freight Forwarding to get a FREE quote and 10% OFF your first shipment!

Final Thoughts

The Amazon Reference ID is one of the most important pieces of information for FBA shipments. Since sellers are not physically present to handle inventory management, making sure information is copied & pasted (instead of typing it manually) is the best way to help logistics companies and Amazon warehouse workers coordinate smoothly. 

Take advantage of our offer of 10% off your first shipment when you work with our logistics company for Reliable Amazon FBA Freight Forwarding.

Do you have any questions about the logistics process? Leave a comment for us, and continue to read the Sourcing Monster blog for more Amazon seller information! You can also check my Amazon FBA course to learn more tips and advice about Amazon FBA that no other course creators share.

About the author

My name is Tomer, and I founded Sourcing Monster to share proven tips and methods that I use every day for my Amazon business to provide value and growth for you as well as you journey through your own business!

Feel free to comment or share any feedback down below!

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