- Chris McCabe
- On August 16, 2016
- 0 Comments
Stop me if this sounds familiar. You’re a Consumer Electronics/Wireless products seller on Amazon, and you have sold brands like Samsung on Amazon for a long time, years maybe. A warning for “inauthentic” items came in, and you handled it. You grabbed your invoice from a legitimate, established distributor of Samsung products, perhaps even one of the handful of authorized resellers. You’ve sourced from them in the past and never had any trouble. Now, a buyer complained to Amazon about the authenticity (or lack thereof) of the headset, charging dock, adapter or another item.
Amazon strips that ASIN away until you can prove that you deserve to list and sell it. In the past, you sent invoices to them and perhaps a brief explanation for why you believe a buyer may have considered the items defective, not as advertised, or otherwise short of their expectations for a new Samsung product. Somehow, that didn’t cut it this time. The same kinds of documentation and links to your supplier readily handed over and approved in the past now generate a response asking for “more information” or an actual Plan of Action for why you received Inauthentic item complaints, and what you plan to do about it now to make sure they never have to review your account again for this reason.
Perhaps even you’re told that your entire account is now under review, and other complaints surfaced in the meantime. Other buyers reported receipt of “Used Sold As New” Samsung products which now require an explanation too. Then, suddenly and without any emails, messaging, wording, comments or warning, you can’t list any new Samsung items at all anymore. Then, probably, you can’t list the ones you had before. No performance notification showed up in Seller Central, your ability to sell Samsung simply vanished.
What the hell is going on here? You only sell new products yet Amazon insists you must now defend those against complaints that the items were used once, then returned, then sent back out again as “new” for whatever reason.
Sellers easily fall to the wayside the moment any buyer complaints come in against the quality of their Samsung inventory. Policy investigators are notoriously inconsistent at vetting item quality complaints. Sellers, previously ungated, who sold successfully for months suddenly find themselves re-gated now, and permanently. Did they receive worse complaints than before, or is Amazon working to remove sellers deemed unworthy by the brand?
After completing multiple Plans of Action, providing all the invoices relevant to the case, and also seeking letters on company letterhead written by authorized Samsung suppliers, a client still received the below message. And this, after multiple attempts to clarify which ASINs were involved and how or why FBA had classified what buyers reported to be “defective” items as “Resellable inventory” then sent to a second buyer. Naturally, a used sold as new complaint or one for inauthentic or not as advertised, results from such a practice.
Based on the information you provided, you may not sell these items on Amazon.com. We removed your listings for this brand:
Please do not relist these items. If we receive more complaints about your listings, we may not allow you to sell on Amazon.com.
A quick sample of seller responses:
“We noticed our Samsung listings going inactive. No email from Seller Performance yet. Is there any recourse or any way to appeal? We went to send in some FBA today and it showed us as blocked. We had no warning, nothing.”
“I am still trying to find out what’s happening.
I am not so sure this is a Samsung issue. I think. My belief is it’s an Amazon play. They are using PQ to kick everyone off.
Perhaps they are aware Samsung is interested in cutting them off. Nothing surprises me at this point.”
Are Product Quality teams tougher on sellers of Samsung than they are with other item complaints? Is there a directive from up on high to bolster enforcement of complaints against sellers of larger brand items versus smaller, lesser ones? I’m not sure if Samsung wireless items attract more item quality complaints than other items, but I have detected an increase in the number of sellers gated out of it. It will be interesting to determine the “root causes” of these actions in the days and weeks to come.