Amazon is a company that has over 2 million third-party sellers who are responsible for covering over half of their sales; which creates quite a bit of competition. This is why Amazon sellers must strive to have a high feedback rating to distinguish themselves from the rest and maintain success in their business.
If they don't have a high rating sellers can't build the necessary trust in their customers, that's what makes it so important. By scanning the feedback ratings on Amazon seller profiles, buyers quickly evaluate and without a second thought already know who generates the most trust and is worthy of their attention. It happens that almost always, the consumer will choose to give their business to the seller who has the highest ratings on their profile, especially if they find themselves choosing between listings with similar prices.
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But beyond the trust shown by the buyer, there are some unique rules about how negative feedback can directly affect sales on none other than Amazon specifically.
Here are a few ways in which this happens:
- Negative feedback significantly reduces your chances of winning the Buy Box. In a nutshell, the Buy Box is the box on a product detail page that allows the buyer to add the item to their shopping cart.
- When several sellers compete to sell the same product, it is when the Buy Box favors them and they all want to be able to place it there. Winning the Buy Boxes is essential to have more reach since all sellers want their offers to have the highest visibility.
To determine who will be the winner of a Buy Box, Amazon evaluates the seller's overall score based on the customer's experience. With each of their completed sales, sellers receive or lose points towards their Buy Box seller score. To give an example, an order placed without problems receives a score of 100 points from the seller.
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Reasons why a seller might not get the Buy Box:
Conversely, negative seller feedback (e.g., one or two-star ratings) results in the highest order penalty for your Buy Box; which would be a 500 point deduction to your overall score. With this scoring system in place, Amazon sellers who accumulate so many negative reviews have virtually no chance of being able to earn the Buy Box and therefore much less chance of attracting buyers.
Negative feedback could result in revocation of your Amazon seller privileges
To evaluate seller performance, Amazon measures an Order Defect Rate (ODR), which is the percentage of your orders that have received negative feedback from buyers in addition to other poor reactions to your Amazon seller profile.
Low ratings that are one or two stars are considered negative feedback. Amazon has made it clear that having an ODR above 1% could result in the loss of your seller privileges, meaning that sellers who have more than 1% of their orders with one or two-star ratings for their seller services could lose their Amazon privileges.
Neutral reviews on Amazon are also fatal
Any comments from a customer to a seller that are 3 stars or less are not saved from being considered a bad review and this can hurt a seller's profile.
This is because Amazon does not simply measure seller reviews with an average rating of 5 stars. A seller's profile also includes the percentages of positive ratings over the past 12 months.
Something that every seller should know is that Amazon only considers 4 to 5-star ratings to be positive, which is why any rating that is 3 stars or less is no good at all.
Fortunately for those who have unfortunately achieved these ratings, the process for dealing with harmful comments you have received on Amazon is clear and doable for any type of seller.
How to remove Amazon negative feedback
Case 1: Feedback doesn't meet Amazon guidelines
You can request the removal of the message if the message does not meet Amazon's guidelines
Getting rid of negative customer comments can be as easy as checking if they comply with the rules set by Amazon for comments. Comments that do not meet such requirements can be removed by Amazon itself upon request, this will allow the seller to get back to having a high feedback rating. Want to know what are these lucky rules could save you from a bad reputation as a seller?
Get to know the rules about customer reviews that Amazon considers ineligible feedback:
Amazon allows its customers to write a review of the products they received on the product pages, so this makes it unnecessary to include product reviews in seller feedback. Transaction feedback should be a buyer's opinion about the service they received from the seller, not a review of the product they ordered.
Any comments or links that are promotional and about other merchants or websites are immediately considered inappropriate comments.
Obscene or abusive language
If the customer has a suggestion to make or a complaint to file, they should do so without using vulgar or abusive language towards the seller.
Amazon prohibits comments that include identifying information about Amazon users.
Case 2: feedback is ineligible for removal
Then, my friend, you just can reach out to the customer. You can do it through Amazon, which is a bad idea, as Amazon will know you are trying to manipulate reviews and that could lead to your Seller account suspension.
Or you can do that from the outside. Using client's phone. Yup, that's quite “violent” as you are reaching out someone who didn't requested it to remove their negative opinion on what they considers to be a bad product or service.
My advice: I won't do it and I'd try to compensate the negative feedback with positive one. Optimize your products, services and processes as much as you can and positive feedback will come, sooner or later. Or you can ask some friends for positive feedback. That's up to you.
I've seen everything. I've seen people calling out Amazon customers and offering them $300 or even a new iPhone in exchange of negative feedback removal. It's crazy, I know, but negative feedback hurts your performance, your conversions, your organic rankings and the chance to win the Buy Box so keep that in mind.
On the other hand, Amazon allows buyers to remove seller feedback. If you contact the buyer and resolve the inconvenience and politely ask them to revoke their feedback, they may be willing to change their mind.
Case 3: buyer won't remove feedback
If the buyer does not remove the comments from the page, leave a response on the Amazon site. Do it politely, but do it.
If the buyer does not respond, leave another comment on the page, so that other users viewing the comments can see that you did your best to resolve the problem.
About the author
I work as an independent eCommerce and Amazon consultant.
Estrella Damm, Intersport, Bella Aurora, Lladró, Textura Interiors, Nice Things Palomas, Castañer, Due-Home and many other clients.
Lecturer & Teacher
I teach and have been a speaker at: Meet Magento, Prestashop, Prestashop Day, SEMRush, Cambra de Comerç Barcelona, ClinicSEO, Ecommbeers, Ecommbrunch, Ecommercetour.com, Ecommfest, EOI, ESIC-ICEMD, Foxize, Generalitat de Catalunya, Inesdi, Quondos and The Valley.
In addition, I have done in-company trainings for brands such as Orange and Adidas.
Finally, I collaborate writing articles for Helium 10, Carbon 6, Shopify, SEMRush, Prestashop´s official blog, Brainsins, La Vanguardia, eCommerce-news.es, Marketing4ecommerce and other blogs and media.
- About Jordi Ordonez