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I ordered an item on Amazon Martketplace, and shortly after I received an email from the vendor (via Amazon) advising me that the manufacturer has reported a fault with the batch so they are cancelling the shipment.

However, in order to cancel the order and get a refund the message asked me to request the cancellation myself by messaging the vendor with a screenshot of the email.

The email was genuine - the links all point to genuine Amazon pages, not a fake or anything - and the order is now showing as cancelled in my Amazon account. The payment is still pending in my bank account so I presume it will be cancelled eventually.

So my question is why didn’t the vendor cancel the order themselves from their end? Is this simply not possible on Amazon Marketplace (seems unlikely) or is there some negative consequence (fees, lower rating) the vendor is trying to avoid by me cancelling the order myself?

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    @SAFEX I think stocks and shares are about the only thing you can’t buy on Amazon yet. I’m sure it’s only a matter of time though. – Darren Jan 31 at 19:55
  • I can confirm that it is definitely possible for them to unilaterally cancel your order. I had a vendor do this to me twice because the shipping times was 2 months which they thought would be too long for me. WHen I placed the order the third time then they messaged me to tell me the reason they kept cancelling it and asked if ask if I was actually willing to wait, which I was. – DKNguyen Feb 1 at 0:48
  • It's hard to tell what's going on: Amazon can treat sellers harshly, but there are also bad sellers gaming the system, and speculatively offering and pulling items and prices. Check the reviews, communicate with the seller, to get a feel for what's happening. (Reviews can be fake, vengeance, or shill, too). – smci Feb 1 at 0:51
  • I’m voting to close this question because its not about personal finances – JonathanReez Feb 1 at 1:40
  • @JonathanReez There is an online shopping tag and there are other questions on this site about Amazon purchases. Although I was fairly confident it wasn’t, had this been an attempt to relieve me of my money would you consider it on-topic then? – Darren Feb 1 at 3:26
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The seller wants to maintain good performance metrics with Amazon to avoid getting suspended. If you cancel the order, it doesn't count against the seller. If the seller cancels the order, it counts against them.

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    Whow. Amazing. I would contact Amazong support and forward this to Amazon - the seller does not only deserve the metric change, he deserves more. – TomTom Jan 31 at 11:53
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    I don't think Amazon would take it kindly. They love to punish sellers, they do it all the time for any and no reason; if you truly care about giving people what they deserve you have to hide this from Amazon. – amara Jan 31 at 18:03
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    @Darren there is no reason to believe that there was really "a fault with the batch". There are plenty of sellers listing items they don't have in hopes of finding it cheaper elsewhere and drop shipping it to you; they send a message like the one you got when they fail to find it cheaper. If this really was some one-off incident where a couple of orders slipped through before they could delist their item from Amazon, then they won't have any problem explaining what happened to Amazon. – Jay Kominek Jan 31 at 18:04
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    @JayKominek that sounds plausible in some cases, but in mine it was a fairly unique item that I haven’t seen anywhere else. – Darren Jan 31 at 19:01
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    @amara agreed. If they are genuinely trying to do the right thing by refusing to sell it, rather than sending it and hoping I wouldn’t notice the defect, they don’t deserve to be punished. Shit happens, as the saying goes. – Darren Jan 31 at 19:03

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