This is always a part called pre-shipment inspection during the whole international trade, pre-shipment inspection should be done before product being shipped out. A professional pre-shipment inspection gives suppliers the assurance that their products are ready to be sent to their destination market. Pre-shipment inspection is able to ensure your products meet quality standards, technical specifications and contractual requirements, in your Amazon FBA E-commerce business, a good pre-shipment inspection will decrease the rate bad customer review due to the bad quality or other aspect due to the product defects.
The target of a good pre-shipment should to be done with the following checking items:
• Assure the quality, quantity, marking, packing and loading of your shipments
• Check products for any defects
• Ensure that your goods arrive at their place of destination in compliance with technical specifications, quality standards and contractual agreements
• Issue report for import and billing
A pre-shipment inspection is a step taken by trade operators (buyers, suppliers, agencies) to inspect newly manufactured products before they are shipped for export/import.
Pre-shipment inspections were officially introduced in 1994 as an agreement to improve international trade standards under the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT), which was later replaced by the World Trade Organisation (WTO).
As an Amazon seller, buying from China or other country and shipping parcel to Amazon US or UK warehouse is indeed a foreign trade business, pre-shipment inspection should be to be done before shipping. Anyway due to many factors, some small or medium Amazon sellers might not have experience to manage the inspection as they don’t know how to do or they actually are not from China, or they have to ship out the parcel urgently due to the time limit (stock shortage in Amazon online business is a serious issue which impacts your sales).
So how to decide if it is necessary to do the pre-shipment inspection or how to manage the pre-shipment inspection process?
As our experience, it depends on your products and suppliers (3 Steps to tell you to find best suppliers from China). Amazon sells millions of small products such as daily use products, small electronics, for small products that has very simple function, for example, a brush, we suggest the pre-shipment inspection to be done in factory, your supplier would do it for you, you may ask them to take a video, you may also do a random selection chekcing in your logistic company. In China, many logistic company can do a simple inspection for your product, they can check the product after taking them out of the carton, this can be done in free of charge before shipping. For those electronic products, a reliable factory will also do the necessary inspection before they pack your products, this is their must-do key parts in the whole product producing.
Some Chinese agent declared that they can do professional product inspection before shipment in charging low cost, as our experience they will just check some simple parameters such as the quantity, color or package checking. There are also some companies especially logistic companies added “product pre-shipment inspection” as their new service and charge by product quantity, they are also companies especially sourcing agent declared that they will do product inspection in free of charge (usually it happens on their VIP customers).
We have to ask a question, do you think these companies (such as logistic company, sourcing agent) are professional in checking your products in functions, product defects? You should have the answer now. As our experience, you should trust your factory better than those logistic companies in doing professional product inspection for your small products, of course, you may use the service if they provide you in free of charge:). We suggest you do product replacement for your your Amazon customer if a product defect DO happens in your Amazon customer, send a new one to them is a good way to satisfy your client (as our expensive, the product cost is actually not a big part in your total product cost, and Amazon customer like the replacement service from their Amazon seller, they might give you a positive review after replacement:))
As those big complex instrument/products, we DO suggest you to find a professional company to do the product inspection before you ship them to Amazon warehouse, as these kinds of products are really expensive, nobody else except professional company can help for you in production re-checking, and it is necessary to do it, you might not replace it for your Amazon customer if product is defective as it is so expensive, defective product will also ruin your brand and reputation.