The fourth quarter is a big deal to Amazon, and it's sellers, and specifically being allowed to sell toys and games can mean some big revenue to sellers. However, Amazon is also very careful about who they will let sell toys and game during this peak season, and they want to make sure that sellers are properly vetted to keep fraud down and customer satisfaction high.
Therefore, they have certain guidelines that every Amazon seller must meet in order to be able to sell toys and games during the holiday season. Here is a copy/paste of the policy from a recent email:
Hello from Amazon Services,
As a reminder, to maintain a great customer experience this holiday season, we have established holiday selling guidelines for the Toys & Games store.
Effective on 17th November, 2016, only sellers who meet the criteria listed below will be eligible to sell in the Toys & Games category from 17th November, 2016 through 5th January, 2017.
• Your first sale on Amazon.com must occur prior to 19th September, 2016. The sale does not need to be specific to the Toys & Games store.
• You must process and ship at least 25 orders from 1st September, 2016 through 31st October, 2016. The orders do not need to be specific to the Toys & Games store.
• Your pre-fulfillment cancel rate for the period from 1st October through 31st October, 2016 must be no greater than 1.75%.
• Your late shipment rate for the period from 1st October through 31st October, 2016 must be no greater than 4%.
• Your order defect rate must be no greater than 1% short term as of 1st November, 2016.
Orders that use Fulfillment by Amazon will not be subject to the above criteria provided your account is in good standing.
You can find your cancel rate, late shipment rate, and order defect rate in the Performance section of your seller account. If your account does not meet the above criteria, we encourage you to take corrective action now to help ensure your eligibility to sell in the Toys & Games category this holiday season.
Eligibility for selling in the Toys & Games store is determined separately for each country. If you sell in multiple marketplaces, your accounts will be evaluated for each country.
We will provide final notification about your eligibility to sell in the Toys & Games store by 11th November, 2016. Beginning 12th November, 2016 we will monitor the performance and listings of sellers who are approved to sell in Toys & Games during the holiday season.
Amazon Services reserves the right to cancel listings, remove selling privileges, and prohibit the sale of specific products to maintain a great customer shopping experience.
Here are some steps you can take to remain eligible to sell in Toys & Games throughout the holiday season:
• Monitor performance metrics and take corrective action when necessary.
• Utilize Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) to ship products to customers.
• Check your orders frequently in the Manage Orders section of your account.
• Minimize order cancellations; only show inventory for sale that you have available to ship.
• Ship orders and confirm shipment in a timely manner.
• Ensure your seller policies are up to date.
• If you work with outside drop-shippers, solidify their SLA commitments for providing prompt shipping confirmation.
Thank you for selling on Amazon.
If you're not going to be selling toys or games this holiday season, remember to get out the and find some distribution for next season. Also, never forget, January, February and March are still awesome months for selling these types of products.