One of the worst things to happen to you as an Amazon seller and entrepreneur is to have your Amazon Seller Account Suspended. With the e-commerce sector growing faster than ever before, you just can’t afford to have downtime that lasts for hours or even, in some cases, days.
Sure, you can get your Amazon suspended account reinstated, but only once the damage has been done by following a specific set of instructions. Alternatively, you can implement a suspension protection program to prevent this from happening again in the future.
This article will help you better understand account suspensions and how to handle them. But before jumping in, let’s figure out how you got into this issue in the first place.
There are many ways a seller can lose access to their account. Below we've covered some of the more common reasons why sellers get suspended on Amazon.
With over 2.5 million active sellers and with over 200 million monthly visitors in the U.S. alone, it's no wonder why Amazon imposes strict regulations on this platform. That said, to better control the marketplace, Amazon makes sure to preserve a one-seller, one-account rule. Amazon sellers are prohibited from operating multiple seller accounts without prior approval.
Sellers who ignore this regulation can face suspension of their accounts. Amazon can trace violators by comparing IP addresses, email, bank information, physical address, and even Tax ID - Amazon can even trace URLs. That said, even if you're not running multiple accounts, it's safer to prevent other sellers from accessing their accounts from your computer or network to prevent mistaken association through IP addresses.
You can receive a counterfeit report for either of the two reasons:
The buyer is unsatisfied with your product and wants to be refunded or compensated by reporting the product as fake despite being authentic.
Or, you might have fallen victim to hijacking. With Amazon's high population of sellers, it can't be helped that there would be bad apples mixed into the fray. These people are called hijackers and counterfeiters who replicate your product/listings and entice buyers by undercutting your original price.
While these events are both out of the seller's hands, in attempts to protect the integrity of their marketplace, Amazon will tackle the situation immediately and, in some circumstances, suspend the account after a single report.
How is seller performance related to Amazon suspension? More so than not, the fate of your seller accounts heavily relies on Amazon’s customers. So with a vast customer base to maintain, Amazon will spend the time and effort ensuring that customer satisfaction is a priority. The e-commerce giant accomplishes this by encouraging, if not compelling, third-party sellers to follow a strict standard.
Here are three metrics Amazon imposes on you and millions of other sellers using their platform.
Amazon requires that each seller maintains an ODR just south of 1% to prevent suspension of accounts.
If your rate falls below the 2.5% that Amazon requires, your account will be suspended. This event indicates that you need to improve your inventory management if ever you recover your account.
Amazon requires its sellers to keep below the late shipment rate of 4% to avoid getting suspended.
Stealing intellectual property is generally considered an offense worldwide, and Amazon is not an exception. Copyright infringement is one of the most abysmal offenses against Amazon. This is also one of the most difficult to settle as Amazon will require you to resolve the dispute with a third-party service.
Lastly, Amazon maintains a strict list of prohibited and highly regulated products to sell on its platform. Amazon is also very critical of how these products are labeled and listed. Rules will vary depending on the country and marketplace you are selling in.
This is because the e-commerce giant actively protects its customers from harmful or fraudulent products. Keep in mind that Amazon updates these lists repeatedly, so it’s best to keep a tab on Amazon’s policies regularly.
Protecting your account from Amazon suspensions is a proactive measure to avoid issues in the future. It's easier to prevent a suspension than to conduct an Amazon suspension appeal.
If the item you are selling generates frequent returns and complaints, take immediate action! Thoroughly review the process from sourcing, inspecting, and listing content. Take note of any issues you can address to avoid problems in the future.
Being proactive with these matters will indicate that you are a hands-on seller willing to improve your customers' overall experience.
One of the worst things you can do is isolate yourself and refuse advice or suggestions from the many available resources to guide your decision-making and even provide warnings of possible threats.
Often, sellers are shocked when their accounts get suspended when the signs are visible for weeks. However, the sellers who noticed the signs in advance changed their course, saving their account from suspension.
The bottom line is, Amazon is frequently updating its rules and TOS when selling on their marketplace. Therefore, it's advised to stay updated with the current news to avoid possible mishaps.
If you often receive “inauthentic” warnings, take them seriously and try to address them to the best of your ability. Avoid mindlessly responding to these notices and find the root cause.
Another measure is to stop selling items that often lead to dissatisfaction for your customers that may result in removing your listings, serving of warnings, and even casting further scrutiny of your Amazon Seller Account.
If this product happens to be your top-seller, make sure to address why customers are continuously unsatisfied with your product.
While maintaining a close eye on your Seller Central Dashboard doesn’t equate to customer service etiquette, the customer feedback you receive is correlated to a positive metric rating.
These metrics are good indicators of your customer’s overall experience. Take note that this is crucial, especially during high-volume occasions like the Christmas season when activities in Amazon reach their peak.
Amazon’s guidelines are constantly changing. They typically send you an email about these changes, which are easily overlooked. Stay ahead of these alerts and be aware of notifications to avoid missing an important notice which could affect your seller's health.
Suppose you violate Amazon’s safety infringement guidelines and safety policies. In that case, you might as well say goodbye (albeit this is only temporarily) to your account as the chances of it being suspended just rose tremendously. The product safety team is stringent. They are quick to suspend your account and demand your plan of action.
After receiving an email informing you that your selling privileges have been retracted, take the following steps to start your Amazon suspension appeal.
It's easy to get impatient and take immediate action once your account is suspended, however, it's best to maintain a level head and take careful, deliberate steps to avoid digging a deeper hole.
Need additional assistance with account suspensions? Contact Seller Interactive. Our experts understand how to best address the issue and implement effective strategies to resolve a suspension case. We understand the urgency to reinstate your account, assigning our team members to handle matters quickly and efficiently. Get in touch to find out how Seller Interactive can help your Amazon seller account today!
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