Globally, Amazon shipped approximately 7.7 billion packages in 2021. With this many products shipping regularly, it's imperative to ensure your items are correctly labeled and securely packaged. A prep service can provide secure packaging as well as several other benefits to your company. Before using a prep center, you'll need to do your homework and find out why they're important and what to look for in a center. The following explains everything you need to know about Amazon prep centers.

What Are Amazon Prep Centers?

An Amazon prep center will receive and prepare your inventory for shipping. This is more than simply packaging items in a box and sending them off. There are rules and regulations regarding packing and shipping. If your business does not carry out these packaging protocols correctly, your item may be returned to you.

When you use an Amazon prep center, you're handing the entire process over to experts. This process will often include a wide range of services. The following are some of the many services a good prep center will provide.

• Bubble wrapping

• Labeling

• Bagging

• Sorting 

• Inventory checkouts

• Quality control

• Shipping

• Advanced automation

Why Are Amazon Prep Centers Important?

A prep center can provide your company with several services and benefits to make your business process run more efficiently.

• Save Time: Preparing your inventory according to Amazon's rules can take time and staffing. Instead of sticking labels on boxes and stuffing bubble wrap, you can spend more time with customers and developing new products.   

• Reduce Costs: You can save not only time but money when outsourcing your prepping and processing work to an outside company. Since prep centers often buy shipping supplies in bulk, they can save you money on boxes, labels, and even postage. You'll save on labor costs when employees aren't spending time preparing items for shipping. 

• Save Space: A prep center can help you store products if you're short on space. This is often crucial if someone is operating a small business or startup out of their home.

• Streamline Business: You can streamline your business practices when implementing a dependable prep center. You can spend your time and money on other areas, such as management, marketing, and sales.

• Risk Reduction: According to Market Place, a package in transit is dropped approximately 17 times. Finding an Amazon prep center that will provide quality materials and package items correctly means you can reduce lost or damaged products. This leads to greater customer satisfaction and higher retention rates.

How Should You Prepare Inventory for a Prep Center?

You can take several steps to make the process proceed as smoothly as possible.

• Consolidate as many shipments as possible to save on costs.

• Make sure to label every product accurately and clearly.

• Include product descriptions and SKU numbers.

• Use an RFID or barcode scanner to track all shipments.

• Maintain a close working relationship with your prep center. Make sure you're aware of all current requirements for preparing your products.

What Should You Look for in an Amazon Prep Center?

You'll want to consider several factors when looking for the right prep center to meet your business needs.

• Price: This is likely your first consideration when selecting an Amazon prep center. There are several ways you might pay for services. A few include monthly base fees or per item. In general, smaller and lighter packages will be cheaper to ship.

• Processing: How quickly can a prep center prepare your inventory? Some prep centers will offer guarantees to have your products in FBA by a certain time. You may find turnover times as low as 24 hours.

• Inspection: A manufacturer may not check inventory as closely as they should. A prep service inspection may spot a problem that is otherwise overlooked. This may reduce stock rejection.

• Storage: Some companies use prep centers to store products and inventory. You may find it cheaper and more convenient to store inventory this way. If you don't want to take the chance that your products are stuck or "suspended," you may want to use a prep center to store your inventory.

• Location: The type of business you have and where you receive your product from will play a large part in deciding the location of your prep center. You might want a center close to the ports where your shipments come in. You may, however, decide that an Amazon prep center close to your primary business is a better option.

• Taxes: You can save money using a prep center in a state with a low tax rate or possibly even no sales taxes. Sales taxes can range anywhere from zero to at least seven percent. How much you'll pay in taxes can make a big difference in your choice of prep center.

• Environment: Is your product climate-sensitive? Climate control in a facility is essential if you sell food or any type of perishable goods. Paying extra for climate control is necessary if there is the possibility of contamination or spoilage of any of your products.

Selecting the Best Amazon Prep Center

There are lots of companies currently offering prep services. You'll want to take the time to choose a prep center carefully. Prepare yourself to ask plenty of questions because what may seem like a small detail could make a big difference in how your product is packaged and shipped. You'll need to find a third-party professional with the expertise to handle all your prepping and shipping needs.

Selecting All Points as your fulfillment partner means you'll receive storing and shipping services that are efficient, high-quality, and automated. Using the latest technology and software, All Points can help you smoothly manage inventories, reduce costs, and increase scalability while simplifying returns. All Points also offers kitting and printing services. Contact All Points for more information.


In summary, Amazon prep centers are invaluable for ensuring your products are correctly labeled and securely packaged, especially given the vast volume of shipments handled by Amazon. These centers offer a range of services, including bubble wrapping, labeling, bagging, and quality control, which can save time, reduce costs, save space, streamline business processes, and mitigate risks. When choosing a prep center, consider factors such as pricing, processing speed, inspection quality, storage options, location, tax implications, and environmental controls. Carefully selecting a professional prep center, like All Points, ensures efficient, high-quality, and automated services that can help manage inventories, reduce costs, and increase scalability.

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