Whether you have already started your ecommerce business elsewhere or just started it out on Walmart, you want to keep your business up and running anytime. This way, your business operations will not be impeded, your brand awareness will increase over time, and you will attract more customers, which translates into higher sales.
However, new sellers often receive account suspension notifications from marketplace operators because of violating simple rules. While having a suspended account mostly happens to rookie sellers because of unfamiliarity, it is not an excuse to be exempted from rules and not know them in the first place.
So if you want to sell in the Walmart marketplace and thrive, it would be best to know the best practices and guidelines for avoiding account suspensions. This article will enumerate why some sellers get suspended accounts and how you can avoid it yourself.
Like Amazon and eBay, the Walmart Marketplace is an online marketplace that allows third-party sellers to list and sell their products on Walmart.com alongside the retail giant’s own inventory. It is open to sellers of all sizes, but it has stricter guidelines in accepting third-party sellers to ensure orders in the marketplace and provide the best products and services to the shoppers.
For sellers, one of the biggest advantages of selling on Walmart Marketplace is the size of Walmart’s customer base. With over 380 site visitors per month, Walmart.com gives sellers access to a vast audience and loyal customer base. In addition, Walmart Marketplace offers very competitive and reasonable listing fees and seller commissions, which can be as low as 6%. Lastly, Walmart Marketplace provides sellers with various shipping options, including free two-day shipping on orders over $35, which can entice your potential customers.
As a Walmart.com seller, you may have noticed some of your fellow marketplace sellers having suspended accounts or have seen them ask about this on seller forums. While this may be confusing and frustrating, especially to new sellers, you must understand that Walmart has strict rules that all sellers must follow.
Here are some reasons why Walmart marketplace sellers get suspended from selling on the platform:
Sellers must abide by the following Seller Performance Standards that Walmart has set. Otherwise, they will be suspended from selling on the marketplace.
The number of orders with at least one defect divided by the total number of orders placed during the same period gives you your order defect rate. Some defects include seller-initiated cancellations, inaccurate or damaged items, late deliveries, and customer complaints from ratings and feedback. But even if some orders have multiple issues, Walmart only counts one defect per order.
This is the percentage or rate of orders delivered on time or ahead of the expected delivery date (EDD). But for orders with multiple shipments, sellers are expected to deliver them completely by the EDD.
This means that sellers must always provide the customers with tracking details within 24 hours of shipment and delivery scans on or before the EDD.
After setting up a Walmart seller account, all third-party sellers, including you, must agree to the terms and conditions set on the Marketplace Retailer Agreement. In this agreement, you will promise not to engage in any blackhat practices and always follow Walmart’s Terms and Conditions.
Furthermore, you will declare not to sell any fake, used, or prohibited goods on Walmart.com. And along with product content guidelines, the document also describes the procedures you are accountable for, like order fulfillment and inventory management.
Lastly, you must constantly check the quality of your product listings, especially whenever Walmart releases updates on its marketplace policies and requirements. Otherwise, you will face the consequences of non-compliance, one of which is account suspension that can last for weeks, months, or forever.
Besides the Marketplace Retailer Agreement, you must also uphold the Walmart Trust and Safety Standards to avoid having your account suspended. Here are the standards you must follow:
A seller violates this standard when they list a product on Walmart.com that is prohibited or potentially poses a risk to product and food safety regulations. These items include prescription medications, gambling or surveillance equipment, and untested or uncertified baby products.
A seller violates this standard by selling products considered offensive to customers, promoting discrimination or violence, or displaying profanity or nudity.
A seller violates this standard when they sell items that do not acknowledge the creator or intellectual property owner, which signals that you do not have the right to sell the item.
Walmart is known for its marketing strategy called “Every Day Low Prices” (EDLP). Therefore, as a third-party seller on Walmart.com, you must ensure that your prices are aligned with Walmart’s guidelines and guarantee to offer affordable items to its customers.
Even though some pricing violations result in delisting your SKU, Walmart may suspend your account for glaring violations and several infractions. Therefore, you must take note of the following rules when pricing your products:
Lastly, your operations must always be at the highest level as a Walmart marketplace seller. This involves ensuring Walmart shoppers receive their orders on time, offering high-quality and commendable customer service, and processing returns and refunds within the given time frame. Otherwise, your seller account will be suspended, which can affect your business in various ways.
Now that you know what prompts Walmart to suspend your account, you must follow all the rules they have set to avoid account suspension. Below are some tips to help you stay in good standing with Walmart and continue growing your business:
Learning how to become a Walmart marketplace seller does not only involve knowing the application process and requirements but also knowing how to avoid account suspensions. Many Walmart sellers become suspended from selling on the marketplace by failing to perform according to standards, comply with the Marketplace Retailer Agreement, and meet operational standards. Moreover, some violate the Trust and Safety standards and Walmart Pricing standards.
However, you can prevent account suspensions by being familiar with the terms and guidelines, keeping up-to-date with the policies, only selling products allowed on Walmart, and providing accurate product descriptions. Additionally, you must price your items accordingly, respond to your customers immediately, ship their orders in time, and consult a Walmart account manager from reputable companies like Seller Interactive.
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