What Does “Fulfilled by Amazon” Mean?

When you’re shopping on Amazon, you might have seen the words “Fulfilled by Amazon” next to some of the things you buy. You hopefully won’t notice anything different about the purchase experience, but you could run into problems.

Amazon the Marketplace

Amazon isn’t just an online store—and it hasn’t been for some time. It’s a marketplace, like eBay or Alibaba; it just hides that fact better.

Over 80% of the products sold through Amazon are bought not from Amazon but from an Amazon Marketplace seller who is paying Amazon to list their product. The numbers are even crazier when you look at the products listed on Amazon, not just sold: of the 350 million-plus products available, Amazon only sell 12 million of them directly—not including books, media, and wine—the rest are sold by Marketplace sellers.

Even if you’ve never noticed you were buying from a Marketplace seller before, the odds are you have.

Fulfilled by Amazon

The reason most people don’t realize that Amazon is a marketplace like eBay is it generally smooths over all the roughs and bumps. Sellers have two options:

  • They can list their products on Amazon and, when an order comes through, pack and ship it themselves.
  • They can list their products on Amazon and bulk ship any number of items to an Amazon warehouse. When an order comes through, Amazon workers pack and ship it like it’s an Amazon product. This is Fulfilled by Amazon.

For sellers, the big advantage of Fulfilled by Amazon is Amazon handles everything. They don’t need to run their own store, handle payment processing, deal with a shipper, pack things up, or customer care—for a small fee, Amazon does it. Sellers sometimes refer to Fulfillment by Amazon as “FBA.”

For customers, the advantage is that they get the same, regular Amazon experience, including stuff like Prime, free shipping, and the like, for an extra 338 million products that Amazon doesn’t sell directly. Most people—including me—don’t even notice when they’re not buying directly from Amazon. The packages arrive at your door just the same.

How to Spot an Amazon Marketplace Seller

While Amazon doesn’t trumpet it from the rooftops when you buy from a Marketplace seller, they don’t hide the information either. Here’s an official Amazon listing.

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How to Upload the Best Looking Instagram Images

Instagram is probably our favorite social network here at How-To Geek. We always want our photos to look their best, so I did the research. Here’s how to make your images look as good as possible on Instagram.

RELATED: Why Your Facebook Photos Look So Bad (And What You Can Do About It)

Instagram, like Facebook, resizes and compresses your images to match their guidelines. While the algorithms seem less aggressive than with Facebook (which makes sense because Instagram is primarily a photo sharing network), it’s still better to do as much resizing and cropping as possible yourself—blunt algorithms tend to be a bit heavy handed.

Instagram supports images that are up to 1080px wide and between 566px and 1350px tall. That is, crop ratios between 1.91:1 (a wide landscape crop) and 4:5 (a square-ish portrait crop).

Instagram landscape image Instagram portrait image

Anything between these two ratios is good too—they’re just the maximum values. If your image is wider, it will be resized to fit 1080px wide. Similarly, if the crop falls outside the accepted ratios, like say, a 2:3 portrait image, you are forced to crop it to 4:5.

Instagram doesn’t publish any file size guidelines but, after playing around, I found that most of my photos were compressed to JPEGs between 150 kb and 190 kb. Again, this kind of makes sense: under 200 kb is a pretty standard file size for web use.

File size

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How to Shoot a Time-Lapse With Your DSLR or Mirrorless Camera

A time-lapse is the opposite of slow-mo: instead of slowing down fast-moving activities they speed up slow ones. They’re perfect for showing the movement of clouds, crowds, traffic, and the like. You can even use them to show slow moving things like blooming flowers.

The great thing about time-lapses is that they’re very easy for photographers to shoot. Each frame is a single still image. Let’s have a look at the basics of shooting one yourself.

Before You Start

While it’s possible to shoot a time-lapse with your iPhone, for this article we’re going to look at using DSLRs or mirrorless cameras. They give you the most control.

RELATED: How to Select and Use a Tripod

As well as your camera, you need a tripod to keep everything locked in the same position. You also need an intervalometer so you can take photos at the same interval; some cameras have one built in, but if yours doesn’t, any decent remote shutter release will work.

RELATED: How to Remotely Control Your Camera

The final thing you have to do before starting is to work out how many images you have to shoot. There are calculators that can help, but I find it’s worth doing the math yourself.

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The Best Landscape Photography Gear for Your Camera

landscape scene of a beach, ocean, and scenic mountains
Harry Guinness

While you can take great landscape photos with nothing but your camera, the right gear makes it easier and gives you more options.

I’m a huge fan of landscape photography so I’ve put a lot of thought into gear. Everything on this list is something I’ve personally used. Let’s dig in and have a look at the stuff that will take your landscapes to the next level.

A Good Tripod: Vanguard Alta Pro 263AB 100 Aluminum Tripod Kit ($110)

Alta Pro tripod

The most essential bit of landscape photography gear you can buy is a solid tripod; it opens up a range of possibilities and lets you use narrower apertures and slower shutter speeds—both key things for landscape photos. They also make it easier to take photos in the low light of dawn and dusk.

We have a full round-up of the best tripods, but the best one for most people is the Vanguard Alta Pro 263AB. I bought one for around $200 but it’s now down to $110—that is a ridiculous steal.

The Alta Pro folds up small enough to carry (25.75”) while extending to a maximum height of 65”. At 4.4lbs, it’s not super light—it’s made from aluminium—but it’s not too heavy either. It can support 15.4lbs so way more than enough for any reasonable DSLR setup. The multi-angle center column and highly adjustable legs mean you can set the tripod up to get whatever shot you want.

For your $110, you also get a decent ball tripod head. It’s never let me down.

A Decent Bag: f-stop Guru Bundle ($27)

F-stop camera bag

Landscape photography tends to involve a fair bit of hiking and climbing. Nothing more than 10 miles from a carpark is over photographed. To lug in your camera gear, you need a decent bag. It has to be comfortable, able to carry all your stuff, and keep it protected.

For this sort of adventuring, my go-to bag is the f-stop Ajna. It’s been discontinued (and is too big for most people) but, if I was to replace it, I’d grab this f-stop Guru bundle ($270).

The Guru is a 25L hiking pack with proper hip straps so your camera’s weight won’t rest on your shoulders. It’s big enough to carry all your camera gear, plus a jacket, some food, and a bottle of water. The Gatekeeper straps let you mount your camera to the outside of the bag. The internal camera unit keeps your camera stable and surrounded by foam. Put simply, it’s the complete package.

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How to Add Presets to Adobe Lightroom

Lightroom logo

Presets are one of Adobe Photoshop Lightroom’s most powerful features; with them, you can use the same settings over and over again. The most common presets are Develop presets that consistently apply the same edits to any image.

RELATED: What Is Adobe Lightroom, and Do I Need It?

As well as Develop presets, Lightroom has presets for most of its features. For example, there are Metadata presets, Import presets, Export presets, Keyword sets, Slideshow presets, Watermarks, and more.

While you can make your own presets, there are a thriving community and marketplace of presets made by other people. Let’s look at how to install them in Adobe Lightroom.

Why Use Presets

The big advantages of presets are that they are consistent and quick. If you always make the same few adjustments to an image, a preset lets you apply them all with a single click. This is great for professional photographers who have to process hundreds or thousands of images.

beach and field scenes, shown before and after presets are applied

Also, if you’re just starting and you’re not entirely familiar with all of Lightroom’s editing tools, presets offer a way to give your image a unique look while you learn to do things for yourself. It’s a mistake to rely on Develop presets completely, but you can think of them as super-charged Instagram filters.

Finally, some of the other presets make Lightroom’s lesser-known features more powerful. For example, there are presets that let you export time-lapses directly from Lightroom.

How to Find Presets

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