This is probably- no, DEFINITELY the most frustrating problem I encountered when I was new to fixing orphans. Here’s how it usually goes:

You found a good parent for your orphan listing, you filled everything out in the Variation Wizard, downloaded a template, it looked great. You check it, no errors- Upload: Successful. You check the Amazon page, and there’s a new parent.

Your orphan is no longer an orphan- it’s an only child. That’s no better… Variation fam of 1. Still no reviews, same rank. What went wrong?

This happens every 10 or 15 template uploads for the next week and you start to notice something. Each of these templates only has two rows filled in for the listings, the ones that work always have at least three. Now you know what it looks like, but WHY is this happening?

 This template is missing an anchor. It has the parent row (no product id), and the orphan (asin).
This template is missing an anchor. It has the parent row (no product id), and the orphan (ASIN).

I’ll tell you why, you’re missing what’s known as an anchor ASIN.
An anchor ASIN is a variation of that product that’s listed under the parent, and in your inventory. That’s what directs the upload.

Every time you download a template it will look similar to these. First you have the parent listing, all the rows after that are for variations/child listings. You should always have at least three rows filled in. The parent, the anchor, and the orphan listing.

 This template has an anchor. See the three rows? Parent (no product id), anchor (upc), and orphan (asin)
This template has an anchor. Parent (no product id), anchor (upc), and orphan (asin)

If you download the template and it only has two rows filled in like the first picture, it’s missing the anchor and you’ll need to add one. This means adding a variation from the parent to your inventory.
You can create an out of stock listing, you don’t have to sell it.

Here’s what you need to do:

  1. Go back to the Variation Wizard and click Sell yours on any of the variations that popped up with the parent. You’ll need to check the condition to make sure it’s set to New, and then save, you can also add a dummy price so your new OOS listing won’t be incomplete but it’s not 100% necessary, leave the Quantity blank, this will create an out of stock listing.
  2. Add the orphan information to the Variation Wizard again, if necessary, click save, generate template, and download it.
  3. Check everything again. When you open this new template you’ll notice there are now three rows filled in (tada!), check your template, and re-upload it. Once it’s finished uploading you can check the orphan page, it should show the changes you were hoping for!

If not, join our Facebook group and we’ll help you figure out what’s going on!

This isn’t something I figured out on my own, I was pulling my hair out and complaining to someone about this issue. I had no idea what to do, and thankfully, I complained to the right person! They had already figured it out and were happy to show me how to take care of it. Hopefully you found this before you started pulling hair out!

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