The main difference between Seller Central and Vendor Central is who will be selling your products. Opting for using Seller Central means that you will sell directly to Amazons customers, whereas with Vendor Central, you will sell your products to Amazon – for them to distribute.
Brands and retailers’ market and sell their goods directly to Amazon customers via the platform, Seller Central. You are regarded as a marketplace or third-party vendor if you have a Seller Central account.
You have two choices as a marketplace vendor for completing the orders that Amazon customers place with you. You have two options:
1. either you oversee shipping, customer service, and returns yourself.
2. or you sign up your products to Amazon’s Fulfilled by Amazon (FBA) programme, which will perform the tasks on your behalf.
Manufacturers and distributors use Vendor Central and are referred to as first-party sellers. Selling in bulk to Amazon, who subsequently resells your goods to customers, puts you in the role of a supplier.
Vendor registration is by invite only.
‘Ships from and sold through Amazon.com’ on a products description page is a blatant indicator that a business is selling through Vendor Central.
Available to anyone
Direct control over listings
Authority over listings that contain brand name
Control over what products you wish to sell
Fast payment (every 2 weeks)
Lots of learning resources
Limited Listing Details
No Access to Vendor Specific Programmes
Limited Marketing Options
Only Simple PPC Ads
Establish Consumer Trust
Vendor Specific Programs:
o Enhanced A+ Content
o Subscribe & Save (+ Prime Pantry)
o Amazon Marketing Services
o Richer Advertising Options
o Vendor Premium Services
Amazon Manages All Returns and Customer Inquiries
Wholesale Profit Margins
Limited Analytics & Reporting Available
Slow Turnaround on Listing Changes / Updates
Less Control Over What Products and Inventory Is Sold
Amazon Sets Prices, Limiting Pricing Control
Non-compliance Fees and Strict Policies
Slow Payments Terms
Limited Learning Resources
Whether Seller Central or Vendor Central is best for your brand depends on a wide range of variables. In a (very tiny) nutshell, Seller Central gives companies more autonomy while also requiring a greater logistical outlay for alternatives for delivery and sales. Vendor Central facilitates sales and shipping and gives access to broader Amazon advertising and marketing benefits, however once manufacturers sell their products to Amazon, they lose control over their products' prices and availability.