In response to the Oct 3, 2006 Community Guidelines Change to Amazon’s Terms of Service regarding Free and Discounted Product.
Reviews and the New Policy
This article was made in response to the October 3, 2016 TOS (Terms of Service) update so be assured all the instructions are in line with these requirements, but first a brief overview of what Amazon does not want.
The email I received that I will be citing from was the third in my customer service (Amazon seller support) exchange about the TOS. I put about 75% of my trust in Amazon’s lower level customer representatives but the last email I received took almost the full 48 hours to get back to me when I usually get my answered within the first 12 hours.
So, Let’s Start with What…
Amazon’s new TOS, in regards, to reviews specifically calls out the act of giving customers free or discounted products in exchange for reviews or as payment to solicit a positive review. To put it simply this is what Amazon doesn’t want.
Now the Why?
Sellers were gaming the system. Amazon is a customer-centric platform. If Amazon’s customers cannot trust the reviews of products on their platform, then Amazon believes they will stop shopping there.
Amazon’s initial fix to this was requiring reviewers who received these free or discounted products to state they receive these products free or discounted in turn for a review. The phrase most reviewers used was some form of the phrase:
“I received this product for free/discounted in exchange for an unbiased review.”
Due to a number of recent significant launches of product like iPhone 7 cases Amazon’s customers are starting to mistrust reviews that contain “the phrase.” So because of this Amazon has retroactively started deleting reviews on products with this phrase and now with this TOS change. Amazon has decided to not only ban “the phrase” from their reviews but also the act of giving free or discounted product in exchange for reviews.
As far as what is allowed see this picture below (on the next page):
You catch that?
For Amazon, the only thing that matters is that you ask for an objective review, you can’t give free or discounted product in exchange for a positive review or in an attempt to solicit (pay for) a review.
If you check off these two boxes, the launch strategy is within Amazon’s Terms of Service.
YOU CAN GIVE A CUSTOMER A DISCOUNT AND ASK FOR AN OBJECTIVE REVIEW AT A LATER TIME, THIS IS ALLOWED.
This takes care of your launch.
The real tricky issue is our initial reviews plan.
Unfortunately, there is more to this issue…
Before you use the launch strategy in my “Secret to Success on Amazon” strategy, you will want to get some reviews, so participants in your promotion know your product is a good buy.
In fairness to my students, I can’t go over my strategies to these, but you can become one of my students for free for 30 days just see below.
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