Amazon.com have started targeting sellers of music to ensure that they’re legitimate. They’re “additional selling qualifications for certain popular products in the Music category” and asking their merchants to supply recent invoices from their primary supplier.
Naturally sellers are a bit irate at this, Amazon say that you can mask your buy prices, but obviously you can’t mask your supplier for whom they’re demanding to see name, phone number, address, and website. Amazon are giving sellers 30 days to submit the required information otherwise your listings for Music product may be removed from sale.
It’s easy to see why Amazon want to check that sellers have legitimate stock – music is one of the easiest categories to create counterfeits for, all you need is a CD burner and decent printer. It’s also easy to see why sellers might be wary of submitting their supplier information – they question what they can do to stop Amazon using their suppliers to cut them out of the loop. Amazon do claim a ‘Chinese wall’ between Amazon Retail and their marketplace and it’s unlikely that they would go to your supplier (or if the supplier is that good they probably already do!).
It’s nothing new for a marketplace to ask for supplier invoices to prove that you have legitimate stock, but it’s not something that sellers take kindly to. The alternative however is the marketplace simply to be barred from listing certain items effectively cutting the merchant’s income. If you get a request then there’s probably very little choice other than to comply.