Prep is an optional service that you can use to simplify your processes for many destinations and ensure your products are properly prepared and ready to sell. With Prep, logistics and fulfillment are easier because you have access to the various services that Flexport can do after your products arrive. Prep will complete your request within 72 business hours of arrival and you can mix and match Prep with any of our other solutions like Freight, Reserve Storage, or Returns in order to customize your own logistics infrastructure, whether or not you already use Flexport for fulfillment.
Prep can help you:
- Transform your inventory to meet all sales channel needs: Sell compliant, fully prepped products with any downstream fulfillment provider. Our expertise ensures whatever preparation your inventory needs, we’ll make it happen so you can sell anywhere.
- Simplify your logistics operation to focus on scale and growth: Get access to easy, transparent pricing, inventory visibility, and the convenience of prep and connected logistics options all under one roof—so you can spend time on other things.
- Avoid costly lost cycles from inventory issues: Poorly prepped goods can really cost you in provider rejections, non-compliance fees, damages, lost production cycles, and constrained inventory you can’t afford.
In this section:
Prep Requirements & Restrictions
Prep has some requirements and restrictions in order for it to be successful. These are put in place in order to make sure that your Prep services are able to be actioned accurately and efficiently.
- Individual Prep shipping plans: Each new shipping plan for Prep requires its own request and must be a Forwarding Plan rather than a Direct shipment. When creating a shipping plan that includes Prep, only include items that require preparation. Do not include products that do not need these services.
- Additional Prep services must be approved before inbounding: For non self-serve requests that cannot be handled in Seller Portal you must obtain approval before inbounding. Approval is granted on a per-request basis. Even if you have successfully been approved for a similar Prep service beforehand, each request needs to go through the approval process before inbounding. See Requesting Additional Prep Services on how to get approval.
- Labeling requirements:
- For freight inbounds a Prep pallet label must be attached clearly and visibly. Non-compliance fees can apply if this is not done correctly as well as delays in on time delivery (OTD) and inbound receiving.
- All units must come to Prep with barcodes in catalog unless unit labeling is requested. Prep will apply 1 inch by 2 ⅝ inch labels for SKU labeling. If you require any other format, then the labels will need to be provided to the Prep team to avoid any printing issues.
- Dimensional and weight requirements apply for Prep.
- Branded Prep service: At this time, Flexport can not provide branded Prep services such as printing company logos on boxes.
- Restricted items: Some items are restricted from being able to be brought into the network. Read about the full list of restricted products. Some examples that are restricted for Prep are:
- Plants or animals
- Beauty or medical item
- Contain lithium or lead acid batteries, microchips, and hazardous electronic parts
- Contain any hazardous materials
- Illegal or regulated
- Adult products
- Prep does not accept inbounds without a Shipping Plan.
- Prep does not accept removals from the Flexport Network.
- Prep does not accept split inbounds, this is when an inbound arrives over a series of times or dates.
For more information, please see Inbound Non-Compliance Fees.