Since 2016, Amazon has tightened up its policy enforcement and become stricter in terms of what sellers are and aren’t allowed to do, including banning sellers from offering discounted products in exchange for reviews. Sellers who continue to do so are in violation of Amazon’s Terms of Service and run the risk of having their seller account suspended. We look at some of the things that Amazon sellers can do to avoid getting suspended and what to do if it happens.
If You Are Suspended:
If your seller account is suspended, the first thing to do is put together an Amazon appeal letter. You can hire a solicitor to provide advice regarding your Amazon suspension, but it’s important to communicate with Seller Performance personally; they want to see you take accountability. There are some great resources online about how to write an Amazon appeal so follow those to ensure you do everything correctly. Expect the process to take up to a few weeks and do not try to open a new seller account.
Respond to Product Quality Notifications:
If you have had a notification warning you about the quality of an item that you sold, whether it’s had buyer complaints about defects or functionality, too many returns, or was inconsistent with your listing details, you should take action immediately. Conduct an internal review of all processes around sourcing, inspecting, and creating listing content for the item to demonstrate a capability for operational improvement to Amazon. If the product is out of stock and you are not planning to list or sell it again, make sure that the listing is deleted, any remaining inventory is located and removed, and that you clearly communicate to Amazon what you did to fix the issue.
It’s important to stay up to date with the latest resources. Don’t stay stuck in your own small Amazon bubble. Make sure that you pay attention or have somebody paying attention to any warnings received by other sellers so that you can learn from them before it happens to you. Bear in mind that what happens to somebody else today could happen to you tomorrow, so stay active in Amazon seller social media groups, on forums and sign up to email newsletters to keep you updated on all the latest info on what Product Quality and Seller Performance are doing.
There are some common myths and misconceptions around seller suspensions that can often lead to an account being suspended when it could have been avoided. Don’t believe the following:
- Suspensions are less common for top sellers; this is untrue, even the biggest sellers can be suspended.
- Amazon will tell you the reason or reasons why they suspended you – again, the Product Quality team will not always provide this.
- Suspensions happen because warnings were ignored; this is a myth – even sellers who heed warnings can end up suspended, but ignoring them will definitely make it happen faster.
- Suspensions are rare – actually, the number of account suspensions is on the rise and is unlikely to slow down in the near future.
Selling on Amazon can be a great way to make money full-time or as a side hustle, but having your account suspended can halt your income. Keep these tips in mind in order to ensure that your account stays on track and adheres to guidelines.