- Lena R. Liberman
- On May 13, 2020
Understanding the nuances of Amazon seller feedback vs. Amazon product reviews will help you set realistic (and ambitious) goals, meet them, and build a trustworthy reputation on Amazon — all while boosting sales, rising in rank, and inspiring customer loyalty.
The best way to build a trustworthy reputation and grow your business on Amazon is by accruing seller feedback and product reviews in both quantity and quality (learn how here). These two metrics are used by both shoppers and Amazon to compare 1) the quality of similar products, and 2) the service of merchants offering similar goods.
Seller feedback and product reviews serve different purposes in building a brand and a seller’s reputation on Amazon. That’s why when referencing these terms, make sure to include “seller” in front of feedback, and “product” in front of reviews. That way there is a clear delineation between the two, which are often mistakenly used interchangeably by shoppers and sellers alike.
Amazon Seller Feedback
The seller feedback metric is used to measure the service of an Amazon seller. Shoppers are encouraged to rate their experiences with sellers by leaving feedback based on factors such as delivery, condition on arrival, and communication. Using the five-star rating system — similar to product reviews — buyers can leave their feedback after they have made their purchases and interacted and transacted with the seller and Amazon.
Sellers who focus on getting and maintaining Amazon feedback scores between 95% and 100% are hyper-focused on the buying experience. Again, this comes down to the shipping time, packaging, fulfillment methods, and communication. A high feedback score can reassure buyers of a seller’s integrity and prevent sellers from suspension.
Seller feedback is crucial to third-party (3P) resellers because 3P merchants compete with others who sell identical products. Sellers with better feedback scores, faster shipping, and lower prices tend to win the coveted Buy Box more often, which in turn equals more sales.
What’s more, a higher feedback score (100% being the best) mitigates the risk of account suspension. If your negative feedback rate reaches 25%, you risk being suspended by Amazon (and you have more and other problems to address). Asking shoppers to leave you seller feedback isn’t just necessary for resellers and arbitrage sellers, it’s a key component of all selling on Amazon. If you’re not sure where your customer satisfaction rate stands, get into the habit of regularly checking your Amazon Account Health. This dashboard will help you know more and do better.
If your account does get suspended for performance issues, you, as a seller, will have to submit a plan of action (POA) to Amazon detailing how you intend to remedy the situation. If the plan is rejected or not executed with any real improvement, you could be closing up shop, and nobody wants to deal with a headache of that magnitude or lose that kind of business. Best to have an Amazon Pre-POA ready should you need it.
Amazon Product Reviews
Product reviews are a highly charged topic for many Amazon sellers. They are a core element of the Amazon shopping experience because they help shoppers make educated purchasing decisions, but they’re also suspect given the abundance of bad actors employing review farms to crank out voluminous numbers of fake reviews. Since shoppers can’t physically see and touch a product on the Amazon Marketplace, they rely on previous purchasers to provide them with critical information. Even though product reviews are now taken with a grain of salt given bad actors and black-hat tactics, they’re still a primary driver when it comes to the buy/don’t-buy decision.
Additionally, product reviews are key to the Amazon algorithm and organic search ranking. This is especially true when a product has recently launched on Amazon. Remember that most shoppers believe that their purchases “come from Amazon,” which means that Amazon has a vested interest in presenting products that meet customer expectations. And of course, the best testament of that comes from reviews.
When launching a product, the first five to ten reviews are imperative to the product’s discoverability on the site. They matter to organic ranking and they’re the first reviews a potential buyer sees.
Sell More and Build Your Amazon Reputation with BOTH Seller Feedback AND Product Reviews
There are two ways to get Amazon seller feedback and product reviews: organically (the buyer takes the initiative to leave feedback or a review) and by solicitation (yes, sellers can ask for feedback and reviews, they just have to do it in compliance with Amazon’s rules). Unless you’re a high-volume seller, don’t expect to get many seller feedback ratings or product reviews without asking. You’re going to have to reach out to buyers and ask using techniques and language approved by Amazon.
The best way to do this is to use the Buyer-Seller Messaging and Request a Review tools. These are offered in Amazon’s Seller Central, but they are extremely limited and entirely manual. The easiest, fastest, safest way to build your seller feedback and product reviews is by using an automated system where you can go beyond Seller Central’s capabilities and do things (where applicable and available per Amazon) like create workflows and filters and templates, set triggers and timing, and see notifications and analytics.
Buyer-Seller Messaging capabilities are plentiful and rich in the Seller Labs Communication Center Powered by Feedback Genius. You can use the built-in features to build relationships with buyers by delivering stellar customer service, staving off potential problems, and showing your brand’s personality. It’s a chance to touch base with buyers and seal the deal in terms of a positive shopping experience. You can even test and optimize your messages so that you maximize your results.
Request a Review Automation is also available in the Communication Center. This is a simple tool that sends a message to a buyer asking for both seller feedback and a product review. What it delivers in simplicity, it lacks in customizability and personality. Using Request a Review transmits one Amazon-crafted, Amazon-sent templated message. It’s pretty black-box so you won’t know if/when that message sent or if it resulted in seller feedback or a product review. And that’s how Amazon wants it. The good news about Request a Review is that with that single Amazon-crafted, Amazon-sent templated message that you cannot modify, you run no risk of violating Amazon’s communication guidelines and being suspended from Buyer Seller Messaging. The other good news is that with the Seller Labs Communication Center, you can skip hitting the Request a Review button for each order and instead automate the action so that the software does it for you.
Next Step: Automate Your Buyer-Seller Messaging and Review Requests
Whether you’re going for seller feedback, product reviews, or both, using Buyer-Seller Messaging or Request a Review (use one, not both, per order), you should be reaching out and asking. This can be complicated, labor intensive, and repetitive (three enemies of business success) using Amazon’s limited tools within Seller Central. See how much time you can save, and how much new seller feedback and how many new product reviews you can garner, using powerful automations. Get these features as well as tools for Amazon advertising, financials, and keywords with your 30-day FREE trial of Seller Labs Pro.