What is the Brand Approval Process?
“You are restricted from selling the item on Amazon.” This is the tiny message you receive when trying to list that lucrative product you saw and wanted to sell as well on Amazon. It is indeed frustrating.
Also, as annoying as it sounds, the bitter truth is that whether you are a seasoned seller or you’ve been on the market board for a few days, you cannot sell a restricted brand, category, subcategory, or item if you are not approved.
Regardless, there are steps that you can take toward getting approved to sell a product on amazon. Although brands such as Nike, Adidas, and Under Armour can be a little tricky to sell their products on Amazon, it can still be done when you follow the right steps.
Hence, this post walks you through the steps you can take toward earning brand approval to sell products from Adidas, Nike, and even Under Armour.
Everything you should know about Amazon Brand Approval Service for Nike, Adidas, And Under Armour.
How To Know You Are Restricted to Sell a Certain Brand on Amazon
Generally, amazon can restrict a product ASIN, a whole brand, a subcategory, or a full category of items on its platform. When this happens, you will be expected to apply for approval to sell. But how do you know that you are restricted from selling a particular brand from Amazon? Here are a few tricks to use:
1. Use The Amazon Seller App
You can check whether the product you want to sell is restricted from your phone from the comfort of your home. Say you want to check if your Adidas products are restricted;
- Download the Amazon Seller App from the App store or Play store if you are using Android.
- Launch the app
- Sign in to your Seller Account
- Pull up a branded item. You can type the name, UPC, or ASIN in the search bar.
From the results page, you will see it tagged Requires Approval then there will be a small lock icon at the bottom right labeled Request. This item is restricted and if you hit the Request button, you will be opened to a window with more details on the specific item and brand. You will also see a button inviting you to Request Approval. Click here to find out the requirements and instructions.
2. Use Seller Central Account
- Log in to your Seller Central Account on any device.
- Go to the Inventory section.
- Tap on Add a Product.
- You will be prompted to find a product to add from the Amazon catalog. Use the ASIN of a branded product as above and hit the search button.
- The resultant window reveals that this item is restricted from selling. You will see Apply to Sell instead of the typical Sell Yours tag alongside this product.
- Click on the Apply button to reveal that the product is restricted because you need brand approval.
3. Use Scoutify App
This is a third-party retail arbitrage application that uses barcode scanning to find products online. This application will scan and tell you that an item is restricted by popping a red button indicating it is restricted. Clicking on the button reveals more information on the specifics of what you are allowed and blocked to sell.
The downside to using this app is that it is not free, plus it may be too expensive for some sellers to afford.
Now that you have confirmed that you are restricted to sell and need brand approval, you can now proceed to get ungated and sell products branded by Adidas, Nike, and Under Armour on Amazon.
Amazon Brand Approval Service for Nike, Adidas, And Under Armour
The approval process can be easier and quicker when you use our Amazon Brand Approval Service. You should know that every product, category, subcategory, or brand has its unique processes that need to be followed to achieve approval.
Luckily, you can get the basic framework to get ungated in big brands like Nike and Adidas.
Though, it is wise to get the specifics from the brand or product you need to sell.
In some instances, Amazon may use your seller metrics to approve you for some products. However, you will be required to issue among other documents the following at the very least:
- Wholesale/distributor invoices
- An authorization letter from the brand owner
- Licenses, etc. to be considered for approval.
Essentially, you need an authorization letter from a brand owner, in this case, Adidas, Nike, or Under Armour to apply for approval on Amazon.
You can get this letter from a manufacturer or a dealer in any of these brands. For instance, if you get a vendor who supplies products from brands like Nike, they can write an authorization letter for you to use in your application.
In addition, you need an inventory of at least 10 units from a reputable wholesaler. The information will be reflected on the invoice from this wholesaler.
You will use this invoice without any alterations to apply for ungating on amazon.
One thing you need to know about invoices that get accepted is that they should have the contact information of your company which matches that on your Amazon Seller Account, and your supplier’s contact.
Also, the invoice should be at most, 180 days old.
Do I Need an LLC to Get Brand Approval?
You don’t need an LLC to get ungated. Any seller can get ungated for branded products on Amazon as long as they follow the necessary steps. However, having an LLC has its benefits as highlighted below;
- Established businesses have a higher probability of getting ungated in restricted categories compared to others.
- A company has limited liability. In case you get into a lawsuit, the financial risk falls on the company.
- Your credibility with Amazon or any buyer is highly boosted when you present an LLC as the business.
- It is easy to arrange for shipping, storage, and other logistics when you have an LLC. FBA will only allow you to import goods under an LLC.
Examples of Brand Names
Under Armour | Adidas | Nike | PUMA | Reebok
What Are Amazon Restricted or Gated Categories
Amazon gated or restricted categories are those with strict selling rules that no seller is allowed to sell freely. These categories, brands, and ASINs have specific approval guidelines, and any seller who meets the standards can enjoy a vast market with less competition. That means Amazon only has the power to draw the rules and open gates for more sellers to access the categories. Also, sellers need to learn how to apply for brand approval on Amazon before they think about selling big brands.
The good news, however, is that Amazon does not always restrict the entire category, like in the previous gating practices. Instead, it gates subcategories, leaving some products open, even though they might be under gated categories. This explains why there is a short list of gated categories and a long list of restricted products or subcategories. Generally, any seller who wants to sell a restricted category or brand must apply for Amazon brand approval.
Why Does Amazon Gate Its Categories?
Most multi-million investments are built on trust, customer satisfaction, and a healthy working environment, and Amazon is no exception. Being a huge marketplace with millions of users globally, Amazon strives to maintain a good relationship with both buyers and sellers by ensuring only high-quality products are in circulation. It achieves this by gating some categories, brands, and ASINs. Therefore, among others, here are the main reasons why Amazon gates its categories and why sellers must submit Amazon brand approval request first.
1. To Monitor Product Standards
One of the first missions of the company is to ensure buyers are offered both high-quality and safe products. It does this by allowing only sellers whose products have undergone stringent quality assessment steps to access highly-demanded categories. Since the platform is home to millions of brands and buyers, there are high chances of buyers getting counterfeit products. Hence, it is Amazon’s responsibility to block such sellers and demand them to request Amazon seller brand approval before reaching buyers.
2. To Protect A Brand’s Reputation
Amazon also works jointly with big brands to ensure only authorized resellers can list products from certain brands. Therefore, to protect the brand’s reputation, Amazon asks sellers to provide legit documentation from these brands to show they are allowed to list their products. Resellers who do not provide proof of authorization are locked out of certain categories. Many large and well-known brands require pre-approval with them directly, before even applying to Amazon. This is true for both seasoned sellers, and individuals new to the platform.
Therefore, before sending a request to Amazon, third-party sellers need to learn how to unlock Nike, Adidas, and Under Armour on Amazon and get that certification.
3. To Enhance Customer Satisfaction
Besides ensuring buyers can get high-quality products, Amazon also restricts some categories to prevent sellers from exploiting buyers. That means only sellers with a positive track record can access the categories and reach buyers. This enhances customer satisfaction and a positive rating. The company may also limit or dictate maximum pricing to ensure buyers are not being fleeced.
4. Adherence to FDA Regulations
Many items require the approval of the Food and Drug Administration to sell in the US marketplace. No retail platform, website, or other selling venue is permitted to offer any product that is not previously rubber-stamped by the FDA. The obvious reason for this is safety because specific laws exist to ensure that end users are not harmed. Further, items from foreign countries may not be permitted, as they do not meet standard codes from other regulatory bodies.
Categories And Products That Require Amazon Approval
As stated earlier, Amazon has a long list of gated products and a short list of restricted categories. That is because one category can have more subcategories, which can add up to tens of products. Therefore, when applying for brand approval on Amazon, sellers need to consider three ungating levels; category, brand, and product ungating. They should also differentiate between category and product unlocking.
General Guidelines for Amazon Ungating Nike, Adidas, And Under Armour
Whether you are a new reseller or an established FBA seller, utilizing the vast market space offered by Amazon should never be a challenge again. Amazon’s mission is to see its users grow, and thus, increase sales and profitability. And this does not matter if you are listing your products in a locked or unrestricted category. As a result, if you want to expand your selling portfolio by accessing restricted categories, here are the general guidelines on how to get brand approval on Amazon:
Sign Up for A Professional Amazon Seller Account
Professional Amazon Seller Account is the backbone of any seller as it records all the activities conducted by the seller on the platform. It is through this account that Amazon can tell your business position and determine whether you meet all the quality standards and qualify for Amazon seller brand approval. Therefore, if you don’t have one, you can create a professional Seller Account which goes for less than $50 per month.
Analyze And Verify Your Account Health
Creating a professional Seller Account is not enough. You still need to maintain its health to maximize your chances of getting Amazon brand approval. Maintaining a healthy account includes meeting your customers’ expectations and adhering to Amazon’s business code. That means you should have a timely shipping record, good customer relations, competitive pricing, and avoid violating Amazon’s policies. To check your account health, go to the Account Health section on the Seller Central Account and click on the Performance menu.
Check Specific Brand Ungating Guidelines
Each brand has specific ungating instructions, and you need to check them before requesting approval. Some categories are complicated, while others have simple instructions that even new sellers can unlock easily. For instance, if you want to sell apparel and footwear, you need to research specifically how to unlock Nike, Adidas, or Under Armour on Amazon.
Choose A Reputable Supplier
Getting a reliable supplier is also a vital step, especially as your demand curve grows. Amazon will also ask you to provide legitimate invoices from trusted suppliers whose products fall under gated apparel brands.
After choosing a supplier, you need to place at least three orders, with each order having at least ten pieces of the restricted product.
Retailers are not considered suppliers. You cannot go down to your local store and purchase a bunch of items for resale. The products need to come from verified wholesalers and distributors.
Be sure to do your research before sourcing and paying for any potential sales items.
Prepare Your Documents
Before submitting your Amazon brand approval request, you need to prepare your documents, which include recent purchase invoices from reputable wholesalers. These scanned copies of individual invoices should have all the ASINs written next to the product name. Price and other confidential information should be locked for wholesaler privacy.
As a general note, it is usually best to send the documents in PDF format, so it can be easily seen that they have not been revised. You may also be required to send information about your status or business trading information.
Request Brand Ungating Approval
With all the documents and other requirements ready, you can proceed to request brand approval on Amazon using the following steps:
- Getting a Pro-Merchant Status. You can get the status at only $39 per month. It becomes easier if you already have a Professional Seller Account.
- Search for the item you want to list
- Go to the Listing Limitations Apply
- From the new menu, click on the Apply to Sale button
- Lastly, click on the Request Approval button
Guidelines To Ungate Specific Categories on Amazon
Selling specific categories goes a long way in understanding what each category entails and how to ungate it on Amazon. For instance, the Grocery and Gourmet Food category requires sellers to have authorization from regulatory bodies like Food and Drug Administration. On the other hand, some categories require sellers to have more years of selling experience and a good online presence.
Therefore, when opting for Amazon ungating for Nike, Adidas, or Under Armour, consider the following best tips to maximize your chances of getting ungated:
- Getting a Pro-Merchant Status. You can get the status at only $39 per month. It becomes easier if you already have a Professional Seller Account.
- Maintaining your order defect rate below 1%. Since it is challenging to tell how fast some products can go bad, it is crucial to ensure your orders move as fast as possible to minimize cases of selling defective products.
- Maintaining your pre-fulfillment cancel rate below 2.5%. A higher pre-fulfillment cancel rate can impact your account health negatively. Thus, you need to lower your order cancelation to maximize your brand ungating approval chances.
- Lowering your late shipment rate to below 4%. Timely delivery is one way to get customer trust; hence, you should try as much as possible to avoid late shipment.
- Acquiring child product certificate. A Child Product Certificate is a must-have requirement if you want to sell in children’s categories such as Toys and Games. It also proves that you adhere to both local and federal product safety laws.
Final Thoughts on Getting Approved to Sell Nike, Adidas, and Under Armour on Amazon
Do you think it is time to sell Nike, Adidas, or Under Armour on Amazon?
Worry no more. As long as you have a good standing as a seller on Amazon, the latest invoices from reputable suppliers, and an authorization letter from these brands, your chances of getting ungated rise considerably.
However, you should note that the steps and requirements vary depending on the region and your reputation as a seller on Amazon. Even so, if your application gets denied, we offer our Amazon brand approval service!