Simpl Fulfillment Blog

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Shipping from China to Amazon FBA

March 11, 2020
Amazon FBA

So you want to sell on Amazon FBA, but your supplier is in a different country. The benefits of selling on Amazon FBA are huge, but buying goods from USA suppliers can be pricey. Dropshipping from overseas suppliers is an attractive option to keep costs down. But everyone knows you can make a ton of money by selling on Amazon FBA. Is it possible to ship supplies from China to Amazon FBA? Yes, with some caveats.

Let’s learn how you can cash in by selling on Amazon FBA when your supplier is in another country.

Here’s what to do

Fortunately, there are two ways to do this. The first is having the overseas supplier ship directly to Amazon FBA. The other option is having a middleman handle the logistics for you. There are pros and cons to each.


The concept is pretty straight forward: A company that wants to use Amazon Seller Fulfilled Prime buys cheap goods from China or India and the supplier ships the products directly to Amazon FBA warehouses. 


1. Create the shipment in Seller Central. 

2. Explain to the overseas supplier how to prep the item for Amazon FBA (barcodes, pallet labels on all four sides, carton labels, etc.)

3. Find a freight forwarder to ship door-to-door from China to the Amazon fulfillment center.

4. Make sure it’s Delivery Duty Paid (DDP) if you are shipping air freight.

It sounds easy enough, but there are some problems that can happen. 

Shipping directly to Amazon from overseas sounds great in theory, but the overseas supplier must do Amazon FBA prep correctly. Amazon FBA requirements specify exactly how shipments must be prepared in order to be accepted by Amazon warehouses. Shipments that don’t meet Amazon FBA acceptance criteria can be rejected or incur delays and fees. Can you trust an overseas supplier to prep correctly? Are they reliable? Will language barriers be an issue?

If you’re hesitant, that brings us to option 2.


Hiring a middleman, or 3PL company, to prep goods from overseas so that they meet Amazon FBA acceptance criteria can help you breathe a sigh of relief. There are no language barriers to deal with, and no wasted time trying to explain to an overseas supplier how to follow Amazon’s strict FBA receiving criteria. The risk of late shipments or improperly packaged items is nearly zero. 

For many sellers, this is the way to go if you can afford it. Professional Amazon FBA prep services will take care of everything for you. Using a middleman means there won’t be any surprises or mistakes. For sellers that want to save time and get peace of mind, this is your best bet. And if you like the idea of drop-shipping because of its hands-off order fulfillment, but you now want to start selling on Amazon Prime, it will certainly appeal to you.

What’s your decision going to be?

Some sellers are willing to accept the hassle and potential risks of shipping directly from China to Amazon FC. It can work great, as long as the supplier is reliable and understands FBA prep criteria. Other sellers can’t be bothered with all that, preferring the ease and peace of mind that comes with hiring a 3PL middleman.

If you’re stuck deciding, here’s a quick list of pros and cons for each option:

Direct Overseas Shipping to Amazon Pros & Cons


  • Cheapest option
  • Faster delivery to Amazon FC
  • Better for small shipments, as long as the overseas supplier preps according to Amazon FBA standards


  • No opportunity to inspect goods yourself
  • No partnered carrier shipping discounts (this only works if shipping from the contiguous USA)
  • You may be required to ship to multiple Amazon FCs, which complicates matters
  • Higher risk of rejected FBA shipments
  • Higher risk of fees or delays due to items not being prepped to meet Amazon FBA criteria

Middle Man Pros & Cons


  • Peace of mind with professional FBA prep services
  • No language barrier
  • Hands-off, no-hassle inventory processing
  • Lower risk of shipments being rejected by Amazon
  • Lower risk of processing delays at Amazon FC due to improper shipments
  • Lower risk of fees & penalties for shipments that don’t meet FBA receiving criteria
  • Frees your time to focus on other tasks 
  • Can take advantage of partnered carrier discounts since it’s shipped to Amazon from within the USA (lower 48 states only)


  • Cost
  • Longer handling time than shipping direct from overseas (days or weeks, ask!)

There is no right or wrong choice

Hopefully, you have a better idea of which option appeals to you more. It all depends on your personal preferences, business goals, and how easy it is to work with the overseas supplier. If you want to learn more about Amazon prep services and pricing before making the leap, shoot us an email for more info.

What our clients are saying...

Darcie Nicholson

Go Rings

"We couldn't live without Simpl Fulfillment. The decision to work with Barrett and his team has changed our business for the best! Their speed, accuracy and great communication have made our work lives SO much easier. Trusting them with our jewelry business's fulfillment needs means that we can focus our time and energy toward growing the business instead of just keeping up with it. Plus, they're kind and fun. That's the kind of people we love working with."

Phillip Van Nostrand

La Rousse

Great company. My partner and I have been working with Barrett over at Simpl for a couple of months now and he has been VERY accommodating with our particular shipping requests (pink bubble wrap, putting on pink shipping tape, stickers, etc).

Our business involves pretty boutique shipping, and when we had outgrown our garage that we operated out of, it was really helpful to find someone like Barrett and Simpl Fulfillment to help take care of our orders!

Dustin Gersch

Paleo Powder Seasoning

Simpl Fulfillment has totally helped our business.  We are a small business and by adding Simpl to our team they have saved us time and money.   Great company and very friendly people.  Orders go out on time and everything is easily tracked on my computer and cell phone.

Jeremy Maluf


Have shipped products using Simpl Fulfillment for several months and they're amazing. Great company to work with!

Peter Francis

Hang Your Keys

I've worked with over 5 different 3PL companies in the last 4 years and Simpl has been the best. It would take other 3PL's around 4-5 days to get orders marked as shipped and 5-7 days to get scanned into USPS. That was extremely frustrating as it increased customer service requests. Simpl ships my items out the next business day and also handles all of my returns. I love not worrying and having everything on autopilot. I get weekly updates and their picks are super accurate. Highly recommend working with Simpl.

Lawrence Johnson


We've been working with Simpl fulfillment for close to a year now and have only the best to say about their business and team. They are extremely responsive and able to work with us as partners to deliver a world-class experience to our customers. Everything from their integration to our Shopify, Amazon and eBay portals through to a near-instant response time on escalations makes this a partnership we look forward to continuing on the road ahead. Thanks Simpl!