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Setting up catalogues for variation export to Amazon (BETA)

The Amazon catalogue is here! Amazon is the first big market to be offered for variation export via catalogues. However, if you prefer you can still use the old export.

1. Why catalogues?

  • Your catalogues will quickly become your control centre for all variation exports.

  • The catalogue provides the data structure of the flatfile. As such, you know exactly which variation data is necessary to sell your products on Amazon.

  • You decide what variation data is exported for each flatfile and each platform. At the same time, suggestions help you to set up additional catalogues more quickly: Because once you have mapped a source to a field, this mapping is suggested to you next time.

  • You can transmit data more flexibly because you can map fields in any way you like.

Amazon catalogues are a new feature!

Catalogues for exporting variation data to Amazon are a new feature.

2. Important information on Amazon catalogues

  • A separate catalogue is created for each combination of an Amazon account, an Amazon platform and a flatfile.
    Note: If Amazon releases a new version of the flatfile, a new catalogue needs to be created. The good news is: You can copy and edit the catalogue with the old flatfile version with a few convenient clicks.

  • Characteristics and free text fields cannot be transmitted to Amazon in catalogues. You can create properties for the mandatory field of a flatfile in the assistant for the Amazon catalogue. You can create and map additional properties at any time.

  • A separate flatfile exists for Amazon Business (B2B). As such, you need to create a separate catalogue for Amazon Business.

  • BMVD export categories are ignored in the catalogues.

  • All mandatory fields of the flatfile are mapped in the assistant. You can map additional fields in the Data » Catalogues menu after the catalogue is created.

  • Do you already sell on Amazon and export variation data to the market? When you activate an Amazon catalogue for one combination of Amazon account, Amazon platform and flatfile, the old variation export for this combination is deactivated automatically.

3. Important preparation

4. Creating a catalogue for variation export

Amazon catalogues are created with the Creating catalogues - Amazon assistant in the Setup » Assistants » Omni-Channel menu.

  • A separate catalogue is created for each combination of an Amazon account, an Amazon platform and a flatfile.

  • All mandatory fields of the flatfile are mapped in the assistant.

  • Optional fields are mapped in the Data » Catalogue menu once the catalogue has been created.

  • Amazon catalogues can only be created in the assistant, not in the Data » Catalogue menu.

Free text fields and characteristics are not supported

Catalogues do not support free text fields or characteristics. Only properties can be transmitted to Amazon in catalogues. You can create properties for all mandatory fields of a flatfile in the assistant.

4.1. Creating a catalogue in the assistant

The assistant Create catalogues - Amazon allows you to create a catalogue for exporting your variation data to Amazon in a few easy steps. You specify a name for the catalogue and decide on the flatfiles and the Amazon platform to use. You also map all mandatory fields in the catalogue.

One catalogue per account, plattform and flatfile

You need a separate catalogue for each combination of Amazon account, Amazon platform and flatfile. This is made easy thanks to suggestions: Because once you have mapped a source to a field, this mapping is suggested to you next time.

Creating a catalogue in the assistant:

  1. Go to Setup » Assistants » Omni-Channel.

  2. Click on the assistant Create catalogues - Amazon.

  3. Follow the instructions on the screen. If you need additional information about one of the options, expand the info boxes below ().

  4. In the step Summary, check your settings to makes sure they are correct.
    Tip: Click on the arrow () to show the settings.

  5. If everything is as it should be, click on Finalise.
    → The catalogue is created.

  6. Map optional fields in the Data » Catalogues menu.
    Note: You need a separate catalogue for each combination of one Amazon account, one Amazon plattform and one flatfile.

Step User account

Select the amazon account from the drop-down list. You need to create a separate catalogue for each combination of one Amazon account, one Amazon platform and one Amazon flatfile. You can only select Amazon accounts that are already saved in your plentymarkets system. If the account is not shown, go to Setup » Markets » Amazon » Settings and create a new account or use the assistant Base settings - Amazon.

Note: Create the necessary customer classes in advance if they do not already exist in your plentymarkets system.

Step Name, flatfile and platform
Setting Explanation

Name

Enter a name for the catalogue. If no name is entered, a name is generated automatically.

Activate item export

Activates the export. The export is deactivated by default.
Note: Check all mappings before activating the export. You can also activate the catalogue later in the Data » Catalogue menu.

Fulfilment method

Select if only MFN variations, only FBA variations or both are to be exported in this catalogue.

  • Transmit MFN and FBA variations (default setting) = MFN variations and FBA variations are transmitted (recommended).

  • Only transmit MFN variations = Only variations that you ship yourself are transmitted. As such, a separate catalogue must be created for FBA variations.

  • Only transmit FBA variations = Only variations shipped by Amazon are transmitted. As such, you need to create a separate catalogue for variations that you ship yourself.
    Tip: We recommend that you manage both fulfilment methods in a single catalogue.

Amazon flatfile

Select the flatfile to use for this catalogue.
A flatfile is a file template for specific product categories provided by Amazon. This file template specifies the variation and stock data that needs to be exported to Amazon.
Note: Only flatfiles for platforms that are activated for the Amazon account that you selected in step 1 are shown. If necessary, activate additional platforms for the Amazon account.

Amazon platform
(only shown once a flatfile is selected)

Select the Amazon platform from the drop-down list.
Note: Only Amazon platforms that are activated for the Amazon account that you selected in step 1 are shown. If necessary, activate additional platforms for the Amazon account.

Flatfile version

Indicates the version of the flatfile used.
Note: If Amazon releases a new version of the flatfile, you need to create a new catalogue.

Step Setting up the catalogue

In this step, you map plentymarkets data fields with the data fields of the selected Amazon flatfile. All data fields shown in this step are mandatory fields and need to be mapped. You can map additional fields in the Data » Catalogue menu after you completed the assistant.

If you have created a catalogue for Amazon already, sources are shown as suggestions in every catalogue after that. For each field, the source that you mapped to it most often is suggested.

Create property = Creates a new property and maps this property to the data field. The properties are grouped in the property group Amazon Catalog of the Setup » Settings » Properties » Groups menu. The name of the property is based on the field in the flatfile.


Create price = Creates a sales price and maps this sales price to the data field. Automatically created sales prices can be checked and edited in the Setup » Item » Sales prices menu. The name of the sales price carries the prefix "Amazon Catalogue".


Create barcode = Creates a new barcode and maps this barcode to the data field. Automatically created barcodes can be checked and edited in the Setup » Item » Barcodes menu.


Select data source = A data field in plentymarkets is transmitted to Amazon. Select the data field from the drop-down list Select source.
Note: Fields with the option Map data source manually cannot be mapped in the assistant. You need to map these fields manually after the catalogue has been created.


Manually map data source = These fields are not mapped automatically in the assistant. You need to map these fields manually after the catalogue has been created.

4.2. Mapping additional data fields (not in catalogue)

You have already mapped important mandatory fields for the flatfile in the assistant. You need to map additional fields after you completed the assistant. You can also map additional fields to send even more information about your products to Amazon.

Mapping optional data fields:

  1. Go to Data » Catalogues.
    → The catalogues are listed.

  2. Click on the Amazon catalogue.
    → The catalogue opens.
    Note: The catalogue appears to be empty at first. Depending on the size of the flatfile, it may take several minutes before the data fields of a flatfile are loaded and shown in the catalogue.
    → The market’s data fields are displayed on the left-hand side.
    Tip: Mandatory fields are marked with an asterisk. You have already mapped these mandatory fields in the Create catalogues - Amazon assistant.

  3. Select a plentymarkets data source for the desired market’s data fields from the drop-down list.

  4. Click on Add source to assign another plentymarkets data source to a data field.
    → A new line is displayed.
    Note: Only one value is exported even if you assign more than one data source to a data field. The data is checked in the order in which you assigned it. This means that if the first data field does not provide a value, the second data field is exported etc.

  5. Map the desired data fields.

  6. Save () the settings.

5. Linking sources created in the assistant with variations

If you selected the options Create sales price, Create barcode and/or Create property in the assistant, these prices, barcodes and/or properties are created automatically. You can identify these by the prefix Amazon Catalogue. You need to link these newly created sources with the variations that you want to export to Amazon. This is described on the Item pages of the manual:

  • Learn how to link sales prices to variations in the Linking sales prices chapter.

  • Learn how to link barcodes to variations in the Linking barcodes chapter.

  • Learn how to link properties to variations in the Linking properties and saving a value chapter.
    Tip: Properties created in the assistant are automatically added to the property group Amazon catalog of the Setup » Settings » Properties » Groups menu. Open this group to see what new properties need to be mapped.

6. Activating the variation export

You have checked all mappings and now want to start the export of your variation data to Amazon?

6.1. Activating a catalogue for an existing export

If you created a catalogue for a combination of Amazon account, Amazon platform and flatfile that you already use, the export is automatically switched to catalogue as soon as you activate the catalogue.

Activating a catalogue for an existing export:

  1. Go to Data » Catalogues.
    → The catalogues are listed.

  2. Find the row of the catalogue and move the toggle button () in the Active/Inactive column to the right.
    → The catalogue is active.
    → The data is transmitted to Amazon once a day at night.
    Tip: If incorrect data was transmitted to Amazon during the automatic export, you can correct the mappings in the catalogue, export a CSV file of the catalogue and then manually upload the file to Amazon.

6.2. Activating a catalogue for a new export

When you create a catalogue for a Amazon account, platform and flatfile that you are not currently using already, some additional settings are necessary.

Activating a catalogue for a new export:

  1. Go to Data » Catalogues.
    → The catalogues are listed.

  2. Find the row of the catalogue and move the toggle button () in the Active/Inactive column to the right.
    → The catalogue is active.
    Tip: If incorrect data was transmitted to Amazon during the automatic export, you can correct the mappings in the catalogue, export a CSV file of the catalogue and then manually upload the file to Amazon.

  3. Also check the settings listed below:

Carry out the following settings in the assistant Base settings - Amazon bevor activating the export of a new catalogue.

Settings for new catalogues in the assistant Base settings - Amazon:

  1. Go to Setup » Assistants » Omni-Channel.

  2. Click on Base settings - Amazon.

  3. Open the assistant for the Amazon account.
    → The assistant opens.

  4. Carry out the settings as described in Table 1.

  5. Complete the assistant.

Table 1. Settings for new catalogues in the assistant
Setting Explanation

Step Basic settings

Select the Amazon platforms that you would like to sell your items on.

The platforms specified for the catalogue must be activate.

Step Activate Amazon user account

Activate user account

The Amazon user account specified for the catalogue must be active.

Step Automatic data transfer

Select the Amazon platforms that your item data should be transferred to.

The variation export for the Amazon platforms must be active.
Note: The step Automatic data transfer is only visible after you activate the option Show extended settings in the step Marketplace setup.

Carry out the following settings before you activate the export for a new catalogue.

Settings in the setup menu:

  1. Go to Setup » Markets » Amazon » Settings.

  2. Select the Amazon account.

  3. Carry out the settings described in Table 2.

  4. Save () the settings.

Table 2. Settings for new catalogues in the menu
Setting Explanation

Tab Settings

Active

In the Access data area, place a check mark for the option Active.

Tab Item settings

Item export

From the drop-down list, select the option Daily.

Export categories;
BMVD export categories

Activate the flatfiles that you created a catalogue for.

7. Exporting the Amazon catalogue to a CSV file

You can download the catalogue before transmitting the data to Amazon, for example to check the mappings you created. You can export up to 30,000 variations. If you have more variations, you can filter them by item ID, tag ID and/or manufacturer.

Exporting the Amazon catalogue to a CSV file:

  1. Go to Setup » Markets » Amazon » Data exchange » Data export.

  2. In the Export catalogue area, select the catalogue from the drop-down list.

  3. Optional: Enter item IDs and/or tag IDs separated by commas to filter the data to exported.

  4. Optional: Select a manufacturer from the drop-down list to filter the data to be exported.

  5. Click on Export ().
    → The export starts.
    Note: Leave the browser window open whilst the export file is generated. Some flatfiles contain a lot of data. As such, the export can take several minutes.

  6. Scroll down to the Download CSV of the catalogue export area.

  7. In the column to the right, click on Download for the catalogue.

  8. Save the file on your computer.
    Note: The CSV file cannot be imported in plentymarkets. As such, you need to make any changes in the catalogue for them to take effect during the export.

8. Troubleshooting

  1. I mapped fields incorrectly and thus exported incorrect data to Amazon. What can I do?

    First, correct the incorrect mappings in the catalogue. The data is transmitted to Amazon once a day at night. If you need to change something before this automatic export, you can export the corrected catalogue to a CSV file and manually upload this CSV file to Amazon Seller Central.

  1. I have switched from my old, reliable export to the new catalogues and it’s not working correctly. What can I do?

    Don’t panic. Go to the Data » Catalogues menu and set the catalogue to inactive. Your variation data is transmitted to Amazon with the old export and you can check and correct your settings. Our support team is here to help you if you run into problems or have questions.

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