FAQs | Sunken Stone

Below you’ll find answers to our most commonly asked questions. If you don’t find the answer you are looking for, please contact us.

Email sales@sunkenstone.com with any additional questions.

What It’s Like Working With Sunken Stone

Once they sign up, they stay – some have been with us for over six years and counting.

The advice we mainly have is to get solid video content, and nice high-resolution white background, and lifestyle images. Any images that you see with text on them – we have made for the brand. We don’t take photos, but we use photoshop and stock images to create extra content for you.nnWe also have SOPs for best practices on Amazon content. Feel free to reach out for those.

Our main model is performance-based where we take a percentage of gross sales + a monthly management fee. If you are a newer/smaller brand, we may start off with a test trial first (aka FEATHER TEST), to see if our services would work for your products.

We would be willing to work with new brands, but we would need a good ad spend budget.

We sell your products under our seller account. You still have your own brand store page, your listings say by your brand. The only place where it would say our name is when it says sold by. Less than 1% of shoppers even look at who is selling the products. The reason we would do it under our account instead of yours is that our account is massive and has all the features and marketing levers that Amazon has to offer. If our agreement were ever to come to an end, you would stop shipping to FBA under our name, and start shipping again under your name. All the listings, content, and reviews stay and you can easily start selling your products again.

Whenever you have new SKUs you want to add in, we can just build those SKUs out and create a marketing plan for growth. There won’t be any other additional fees – we would just take our management fee + our percentage of sales.

You would send us all of the assets for the SKUs and we would use a mix of your content and stock images to create new content for you on Amazon.

During the FEATHER TEST, you will not want to swap out SKUs. Please give us SKUs that you know are your best sellers, or there are going to be here year-round. If your brand is crushing it in sales, we will just keep adding in SKUs at little to no cost.

Yes, we service brands of all size catalogs, from 1 SKU to thousands of ASINs.

The transition is very simple. We just start selling your products for you on Amazon. The onboarding process takes one month. So you send us over your assets, we build out & optimize your listings, have you send in inventory on consignment to Amazon, and then we start selling and become your official seller. You would turn your seller account off once we go live so that you are not competing against yourself. If our agreement were ever to come to an end, you would turn your seller account back on, stop shipping under our name, and ship under your own name again – then start selling your own products again with all the content and reviews sticking with the listings

We have a few different models depending on current sales, SKU size, and what type of management you are looking for that will determine pricing for the brands. When a brand is selling more than $30k per month on Amazon, we have a model where we take a percentage of incremental sales + a monthly management fee. If a brand has a very small amount of SKUs, and the accounting is the same as the other brands, we can potentially just add them on to the same deal.

We have a 1-time onboarding fee to build out and optimize up to 25 SKus. Then we get a percentage of incremental sales + a monthly management fee.

Yes, you will have to add our name in your insurance

The commission is based on gross product sales. Amazon takes their 15% and we take our fee right off the top. Then your FBA fees and advertising costs get subtracted and the rest gets deposited into your bank account.

It should be acceptable but if you want to add a clause holding Sunken Stone responsible, we are going to have to add another sentence along the lines of “Amazon is unpredictable and products and accounts get suspended all the time. We’re going to use our best efforts to prevent this and help you if this happens”. The reason we need to add something like this is that things go wrong because of Amazon all the time. So we just want to naturally prevent being sued if it’s Amazon’s fault.

Yes, you can cancel the agreement at any time. We would ask for a 30-day notice.

Yes, at any point during your 6-month agreement, you may choose to opt-out at that point, or continue working with us. (Spoiler Alert: Most of our clients stick with Sunken Stone)

Once we receive your 30-day notice and determine a cancellation day, we would need to plan to remove all inventory back to a US warehouse that you choose, as well as payment for those removal fees.

We can manage your seller account for you on Amazon – the fee structure is a bit different. The model is a bit more expensive to start vs the feather test but becomes cheaper as sales grow.

You will not want to sell through your own seller central because you will be competing against yourself. We will also be fighting for the buybox and advertising which will hurt your business. You can temporarily suspend your seller account once we start selling your products.

We use Feedback Genius and about 25 other pieces of software to manage accounts.

On the conservative end, you should spend 5-10% of sales, but if you want to go into full growth mode, it should be up to 20% of sales.

There are a lot of things that make us different. We provide turnkey services for all departments, we have exclusive Amazon access & the capability to leverage, and proprietary IP software & technology you won’t get anywhere else. Sunken Stone has been around since 2007, are partnered with 100+ brands, and have 90+ full-time employees. Our model is different as well. We sell your products on consignment under our seller account so that you can take advantage of every beta program and marketing lever Amazon has to offer.

Our proprietary Stonehenge dashboard provides insight into your digital marketing and advertising success.

Stonehenge collects data through Amazon APIs to allows users to make better informed decisions with their data.

Data collected by Stonehenge:

  • Orders Data
  • Shipment Data
  • Inventory Data
  • Returns Data
  • Sessions and conversions data
  • Buybox data
  • Ratings/Reviews Data
  • Sales Rank Data
  • Advertising Data

Stonehenge is closely associated with the following services in commerce:

Here’s a video explaining the Stonehenge dashboard:

What Is Stonehenge?
What Is Stonehenge?
Watch this video on YouTube

What’s MAX CONTROL?

Onboarding for Max Control usually takes 2-4 weeks. We do not start managing international Amazon immediately. We start looking into that once we start managing Amazon U.S for a couple of months. Onboarding those brands could take another 4 weeks depending on a bunch of different factors.

No, you would not have to maintain those softwares if you do not want to. We have helium, and our dashboard should be better than managing by stats. So we have software that should take care of everything you need for the most part.

What’s MAX RESULTS?

Onboarding usually takes 4 weeks. For MAX RESULTS, the only thing you are responsible for is making sure the product is sent to Amazon when we need it there. The process is pretty much turnkey from there.

No, you would not have to maintain any software if you do not want to. We have Helium 10, and our customized dashboard should be better than managing by stats. Our software should take care of everything you may need related to your listings Amazon.

What’s The FEATHER TEST™?

The FEATHER TEST is a 4-month test trial where we pull out all the stops to help your brand grow on Amazon in a short amount of time. 1 month of onboarding and 3 months of aggressive sales where we are either going to fail fast and fail cheap or succeed.

The FEATHER TEST limits the number of SKUs we initially manage, please reach out to our sales team with any questions.

Onboarding With Sunken Stone

Yes, you will need to manage your brand for the 1-month of onboarding while we build everything out in the backend. We will definitely be giving you advice on what to do and not do during that time.

The one month of onboarding is where we build out and optimize your listings, perform keyword research, and get you integrated into our systems.

Yes, the setup fee is still necessary. The setup is not just for content & design – it’s integration into our systems, building out a customized marketing plan for your brand, review funnels, keyword research & more. We integrate you into 10 different softwares, including our own and third-party tools.

Your account manager will send you an onboarding form. We will also need your seller account logins.

International Marketplace Expansion

International Sales: After the first 6 months of sales, (once we get good traction in the US), we will be happy to expand you into international markets. We can go into Amazon Canada, Amazon Mexico or Amazon EU, which consists of the UK, Itlay, Spain, France, and Germany). Same SKU count rules apply there as well.

The eight countries that we manage include ALL of North America (Canada, USA, Mexico), and the EU (UK, Germany, France, Italy, Spain). The UK has the biggest Amazon presence in that region. If you already have a presence in one of these areas, we should definitely start there. We can get you into any of the other 7 countries, but we don’t know what your ROI will be in these markets until we try.

Yes, we manage international brands and handle FBA overseas/internationally. We also have PanEU status so our shipping rates are really cheap. (Spoiler alert: ask us about Stone Shipping!)

How Sunken Stone Handles Unauthorized Resellers

We can assist you in getting the resellers off of Amazon but no Amazon management company would be able to do it themselves. We have a free price monitoring tool available called TRAPPR as well. We have the language for cease and desist letters, sign you up for the transparency program, get Uabide involved, etc. We would just need the brand’s help in order to get resellers off, but yes, we definitely run point on everything.

We have about 10 different strategies to get rid of unauthorized resellers, plus we have a FREE map compliance monitoring tool called TRAPPR.

Reporting From Sunken Stone

In our end-of-the-month reporting, it will just show total sales (not broken down by warehousing), but if you really wanted to know that info, we could pull separate reports for you. (Since we are paying sales tax, and we are forecasting out your sales, and letting you know which Amazon DC to ship to, most brands don’t really ask for this info)

We have a video that we made that goes through a sample Amazon sales report. Let our sales team know and we will share it with you.

How Sunken Stone Handles SEO, Content & Marketing

It is highly recommended that you market outside of Amazon. Google Ads, FB, and Instagram Ads should all be driving traffic towards your website. Your Amazon channel, your website, and social media all work hand in hand. As one grows the other naturally grows as well.

No, it does not. You are in total control of your price on every channel. If you were selling products to Amazon directly, then there would be some restrictions. But we are selling products directly to consumers.

Yes, you can put an insert inside the box. We can give you some good examples of inserts our brands use.

You should get FB, affiliates, etc., going first or at the same time as Amazon. If you start with Amazon first, with no outside push, it is going to be very difficult to grow that platform by itself. So if you are starting the affiliates up within the month, then we should start building out your listings soon. So that once affiliates and FB is going for a couple of weeks, we can turn Amazon on and start selling immediately and hopefully have some traction.

We don’t take photos, but we will repurpose your existing media to be Amazon-compliant and optimized. We will use stock images and photoshop to create cutsheets (lifestyle images + copy) for your brand.

There is no way to import outside reviews into Amazon. We do have a bunch of SOPs to get reviews quickly for you.

We have multiple ways to request reviews from customers, including but not limited to, every time someone buys a product, we send them automated messages asking for reviews. We can use your email lists and current customers to get more reviews as well by offering them coupons and deep discounts.

We have built our own software in-house to run giveaways for ranking. Its called the Amazon Saturation Vortex.

A trademark gives you access to the brand registry which will give you access to A+ content & the ability to create a brand store page.

We can handle Brand Registry for you on Amazon.

We use Helium 10 or Jungle Scout to look into sales figures & volumes, in addition to our own software.

There is no way to track whether that customer came from someone from your outside of Amazon marketing efforts. This goes both ways though. People that shop from your call center are probably going to go to Amazon, as well as the people that find you on Amazon first, are probably going to buy from your website. Sales are going to go back and forth but it will be a rising tide. As one channel grows, the other will as well.

We do all the description research beforehand. We put lots of keywords in titles and do advertisements for various keywords to get you listed ahead of your competitors.

How Sunken Stone Handles Advertising

When it comes to advertising, Amazon PPC is one of the most well-known platforms. This model helps sellers amplify their product sales and can be used by advertisers who want only pay when someone clicks on their ad or visit page with this type service in mind! nnOur team at Sunken Stone will efficiently manage all of your advertising campaigns and spending.

Great question! We have two models, MAX RESULTS and MAX CONTROL. MAX RESULTS is where you sell under our account and gain exclusive access to beta testing groups & more, while MAX CONTROL is where we take the reins of your account & take your brand as far as you want to take it!

We create customized marketing/advertising solutions to help your brand prosper on Amazon! While we do not provide the service in-house, we do collaborations with influencers & experienced affiliate partners that lead your brand to success.

Sure thing! Let our expert PPC team take a deep dive & look into your campaigns. Please submit a request to sales@sunkenstone.com.

How Sunken Stone Handles Customer Service

Our team usually handles this (especially for MAX RESULTS), but we go off of your FAQs. If we can’t answer a question, we reach out to your team for the correct response. We have a 24-hour team monitoring customer reviews and questions.

We handle post-purchase emails as well. Just let us know what you want on the email template.

How Sunken Stone Handles Inventory & Logistics

Amazon doesn’t allow us to just transfer over inventory from your FBA account to ours. We would actually have to do a removal order and then send that product back in under our account. Our onboarding process takes about 1 month, so you should be able to sell through some, if not all, of your current inventory. So there are two options – if there are 4-5 weeks of inventory in Amazon right now, we can just leave it and have you sell-through. If there is more than that, we would have to do a removal order on the remaining amount. Removals are fairly cheap.

Yes, you can change it and add as many warehouse addresses as you want. We send products into Amazon FBA using the shipping address on file.

It can be FBA or FBM; that’s a plus of managing your seller account.

You ship your products to an Amazon distribution center so the orders can be Fulfilled by Amazon. We let you know how much inventory to ship into Amazon, email you over the shipping labels, and then you send them to Amazon.

Amazon limits the amount of initial inventory based on size and space. You would have to send the box dimensions over to your account manager to confirm how many units can be sent in initially. Once we start onboarding, we can figure out how many units you can send in for the initial load-in. The limit only increases when sales start going up. This is why we recommend starting earlier – so that your limits can go up for FBA, and you will be set up for success going into your peak selling season.

In the beginning, we will have your ship to your nearest Amazon DC. After the sales start coming in, Amazon’s system determines which warehouses to send products to so that people can still get 1-2 day Amazon prime. E.g., if California has 50% of the sales, we are going to have you ship half the inventory to the west coast.

Yes, you will pay Amazon storage fees to store products in their Amazon FBA system. We will monitor your inventory to make sure we’re not sending too much or too little of your inventory to Amazon. This is why we manage your inventory to make sure we are not sending too much or too little of your products to Amazon.

There really is no rule of thumb. It depends on how well advertising is going on and off Amazon. We will be using your 3pl, (or our 3pl) as a backup in case inventory runs out on Amazon – we can switch to FBM and ship directly from the warehouse.

Amazon will not remove your brand, but you will probably slip in the rankings a little bit. We don’t want to run out of inventory because of this so we try and do our best to keep you in stock at all times.

There is no visibility for lot code information because once the lot goes into Amazon, they get comingled with the other lots. Amazon does not use a first in, first out (FIFO) or last in, first out (LIFO) system, they pick and pack at random.

Skubana is great for overall inventory management. Shipstation is only really good for using FBA inventory to fulfill Shopify orders.

Yes, you could have your own seller account without any active listings to do manual fulfillment. If we did MAX RESULTS, this would be the way to go for international manual fulfillment.

If we submit a removal order, this would have nothing to do with what you are allowed to send in under your seller account. If you would like, a good option to avoid is any types of inventory not being available. You can send in your own order right away, once your inventory hits FBA we can submit our removal order.

Products need to have a minimum of a 3-month shelf life for Amazon. If we needed to recall products, we would do an Amazon removal order.

In order to sell a 4-pack, you will need to have those items wrapped up together. Amazon will not take it out of a 12-pack unless that is your master case, AND the items are packed in three 4-packs in those cases. So we will only be able to sell 8-packs and 12-packs for now, but that should be fine because you want higher price points on Amazon anyways to help with margins and FBA fees. In addition, Amazon has recently released virtual bundling, which gives us an option to test if there’s demand for this product easily. Then we can scale it to physical bundles.

Answers To Questions About Accounting, Taxes & Fees

You would be paid monthly by us. Amazon would take their cut, we take our cut, advertising money gets taken off and shipping fees as well, then the rest gets deposited into your bank account every month. This way, you never have to pay out of pocket for anything besides the initial onboarding fee.

We typically give you payments every 10th of the month and guarantee it by the 15th. We usually get the official reports from Amazon on the 9th, so just in case there are holidays or if it’s the weekend, it may take a couple of days longer than the 10th. But usually always on the 10th.

We handle all sales tax for you so you don’t have to worry about it.

Amazon automatically collects the taxes in about 30 different states. You will only be paying taxes for your products only, not anyone else’s products.

The reporting/accounting happens on the actual SKU. This is how we can tell which returns and discounts are on whose products/brands. We have SOPs and software in place to help manage this process. There has never been a case when the reporting has been messed up with another brand or product.

The cost of Fulfilled by Amazon or FBA depends on how big your items are. If you have items that are light and small, we can get them on a light shipping program which would be about $1.50 per unit. When we need you to ship in more inventory to Amazon, we will let you know and send you the shipping labels. You would then ship your products to an Amazon distribution center.

The other Amazon fees are their referral fees, storage fees, shipping fees & variable category fees.