How to File an Amazon Suspension Appeal and Safeguard Your Business

October 4, 2020
Written by Nicasio Co III

You’re probably here because your Amazon account recently got suspended. While no official data has been released on the number of sellers that get suspended every year, it’s safe to say that thousands of Amazon entrepreneurs are continuously at risk of losing their eCommerce businesses permanently. Many businesses thrive because of Amazon’s robust retail shopping model, but others may be faced with suspension because they failed to follow Amazon’s Seller Guidelines. 

If you’re an entrepreneur who has recently been banned from the Amazon platform, the only way you can reinstate your business account on the Digital Marketplace is by filing an Amazon suspension appeal. After all, Amazon rarely provides any clear reasons for your suspension, and so you have to find ways to ensure you don’t lose your primary source of income forever.

This article is a quick tutorial on how to appeal an Amazon seller suspension, which will help you navigate your way through getting your eCommerce business back.  

Amazon Seller Suspension: Here’s How It Works

Before we officially dive into filing an Amazon appeal, it’s always a good idea to identify the exact process you have to go through if your account gets suspended on the platform. We previously mentioned that the Amazon legal team doesn’t necessarily provide a coherent set of reasons for suspending sellers, but it does give a short suspension notice beforehand. If you ignore this warning, you will get your account suspended in no time.

Below are Amazon Seller Suspension’s three main stages:

Suspension Phase

During the suspension phase, sellers will be given an official writeup by the Amazon legal team that their accounts have been suspended. Sellers will usually receive a message stating that their “Amazon.com selling privileges have been removed,” which means their eCommerce businesses are no longer allowed to sell products on the Marketplace.

These suspensions mostly occur due to the following reasons:

  • Your performance was poor. To keep the Marketplace competitive, Amazon removes seller accounts that are not performing efficiently. Remember, Amazon has a customer-first mindset, and sellers who do not think the same way will be kicked out.
  • You were selling counterfeit products. Amazon’s counterfeit goods division was formed to suspend any Amazon business selling fake/counterfeit products. It has also enforced strict measures to keep any future Amazon counterfeiters/hijackers away from the platform.
  • You violated the Amazon Seller Guidelines. As a seller, it is your basic responsibility to read the Amazon Seller Guidelines thoroughly. You also have to read through specific restrictions for specific products that are on the platform. If you fail to read and comply with these rules, your account will inevitably be suspended.

If you’re in this situation, you are still entitled to file an Amazon appeal— but you have to work on an Amazon suspension Plan of Action to reinstate your business!

Reinstatement/Denial Phase

If you decide to file an appeal against your suspension, Amazon will review your status and get back to you in as fast as 48 hours. Some sellers are lucky enough to have their accounts reinstated on the Marketplace because they have shown their willingness to learn from their mistakes. These can be better elaborated through a Plan of Action, which Amazon approves.

However, some entrepreneurs aren’t as lucky. If Amazon isn’t convinced that your Plan of Action is effective and sustainable, your appeal will be denied. You can only file an appeal once, so make sure you get it right.

Ban Phase 

Sellers who had their appeals denied by the Amazon team are officially banned on the platform. The Amazon Ban means you are permanently stripped of any seller privileges you enjoyed before your account suspension, and Amazon won’t be responding to any other appeals that you try to make in the future.

If you try to be slick and create a second Amazon Seller Account from scratch, it won’t last long. Amazon’s legal team will eventually notice that you violated its suspension guidelines and would shut down your business once more.

The Amazon Ban Phase is a situation that sellers don’t want to be in, and for this reason, a well-crafted appeal needs to be prepared.

How to Appeal an Amazon Seller Suspension

The key ingredient in formulating an Amazon Suspension Appeal is to figure out what your Plan of Action will be. As we’ve mentioned in this article, Amazon will read through your Plan of Action carefully and see if your business is worthy enough to be reinstated on its eCommerce Marketplace.

For starters, here is an easy step-by-step process on how you can try and have your Amazon business reinstated:

Determine the cause of your suspension.

Amazon suspension is a daunting process for any business owner to go through. It’s incredibly tempting to start pointing fingers or complaining to Amazon… but is this going to be beneficial for your business’ reinstatement?

A suspension means you’ve done something wrong, so you have to try your best to identify and troubleshoot the problem as soon as possible. For instance, have you looked at your order defect rates and seen how many products were returned to your warehouse? How about those customer complaints that you completely ignored? You must pinpoint these mistakes early on in your appeal process to flesh out a Plan of Action that suits your reinstatement.

Create a Robust Plan of Action.

As soon as you’ve identified the problems, it’s time to show Amazon you’re responsible enough to solve it.

A healthy Plan of Action is data-driven and follows a systematic approach for the Amazon team to understand how you will solve your suspension issues. Within this document, you have to outline which specific Amazon policy you violated, what problems led to this violation, and how you can address these issues/prevent the same problems from happening again in the future. 

If you’re about to create your Plan of Action, it should include these following sample details:

  • I failed to read and comprehend Amazon’s Seller Guidelines, specifically on the retail sale of medicines and dietary supplements. As a result, my listings included medical products that required official prescriptions from a medical professional (identifying the problem.)
  • I read through Amazon’s Seller Guidelines and educated myself on the proper sale of medicines online. I immediately removed all products subject to its Restricted Products Policy from my inventory and made sure my listings contained safe and accurate information (addressing the problem.)
  • Before listing a supplement on my Amazon page, I will verify if it is allowed to be sold on the platform without any medical prescription. I will also consult with medical professionals to ensure my product descriptions are accurate for customers (preventing the problem from recurring in the future.)   

These are only some examples that you can include in your Plan of Action. Always make sure to own up to your mistakes and promise real solutions for your problems.

Create a formal Amazon Appeal Letter.

To finalize your appeal process, you would need an actual letter for Amazon to review. While similar to a Plan of Action, the Amazon team sometimes requires a formal letter to be submitted to them. 

A formal letter is straightforward but jam-packed with solutions to your suspension issues. It typically consists of the following:

  • An introduction that provides a brief background of your Amazon business (business name, nature of the business, etc.) and an outline of your Amazon suspension.
  • A paragraph that includes the details of your Amazon suspension. Dissect your troubleshooting process and describe how you identified your issues.
  • A paragraph that includes precise solutions for your problems. Similar to a Plan of Action, you can write down your solutions in bullet form and have data/statistics to support your case.
  • A conclusion that summarizes your proposed solutions and explicitly states that you are requesting for your account to be reinstated on the Amazon platform.

Once you have finished writing your letter, you can finally submit your appeal through Amazon Seller Central and wait for the Amazon team to respond.

Pro Tip: A good way to increase your chances of reinstatement is to consider hiring Amazon appeal services. If you hire professionals to do the job for you, your appeal will be more fleshed out. 

Key Takeaway: An Amazon Suspension Appeal Won’t Be Needed If You’re A Step Ahead of These Problems.

The quote “Prevention is always better than cure” has never been more appropriate than when you’re running an Amazon business. Why need an Amazon suspension appeal when you can prevent the problems from happening in the first place? Ensure your business delivers high-quality products, provides stellar customer service, and resolves any red flags before they grow big enough to turn into a possible suspension. Amazon is an extremely competitive eCommerce environment, so you have to invest valuable time, effort, and money in providing the best quality of service to your customers. 

If you’re interested in hiring a professional Amazon suspension appeal service to help you with your reinstatement process, we at Seller Interactive can assist you! We can create an Amazon recovery plan to increase your chances of being reinstated as an Amazon seller. Schedule a free consultation today!

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