Amazon has recently introduced a Frequently Returned Items Badge, that warns customers, prior to purchasing, that the item that they are about to buy has a high return rate. It’s one award you don’t want from Amazon.
Whilst this is a new feature, and appears to only be in the US currently, this new label is asking customers to take a minute to read the product reviews, before making their purchase.
If an item has a high return rate, then the chances are that it has a lot of negative reviews too — most customers don’t want the inconvenience of having to return an item, especially when the seller is at fault.
Why do Amazon product reviews matter?
Product reviews are a great place for customers to share information about their experience with your product. Did it live up to their expectations? Was the item as described? If the answer is no to any of these questions, then you are probably doing something wrong.
Amazon product reviews are the go-to place for shoppers to confirm that they want to make the purchase and that the product will live up to their expectations. Also, as your positive product reviews increase, so does the chance of the product ranking higher in search results, and confidence in your product. Thus happy customers, happy sales.
How do I delete negative product reviews on Amazon?
Unless the review goes against Amazon’s guidelines, then there’s not much chance of getting it removed without reaching out to the customer using Amazon’s template, as long as you are a registered brand with the ability to do so.
It might seem daunting reaching out to somebody who has just criticised your product or service, but try to use their feedback to help you improve. Listen to what the customer is saying, take their comments on board and reach out to them to let them know what you are doing about it. Following a positive experience with a human from your company, the customer is more likely to disassociate the negative connections with your brand, and may even remove the review if you have managed to rectify their issue. Avoid directly asking this though, as it is against Amazon’s policies. If you are not brand registered and try to contact the customer, it may result in your account being suspended.
In some instances, you may have to take a hit on a return shipping label, or offer a partial refund on the item to keep the customer happy, but it is worth it in the long run, assuming that you want to keep pulling in sales. Unfortunately you can’t please all people, and in some instances the negative review may be completely unjustified, or even for the wrong order. You might try your best to explain this to the customer, who might be completely unreasonable. In these instances it’s often best to hope that you have enough 5 star reviews to outweigh the 1 star reviews.
Voice of the Customer
If you are familiar with the Voice of the Customer tool in Amazon Seller Central, then you should already be aware that Amazon does not take kindly to ASINs that have negative reviews and high return rates. They do not keep quiet about their customer-centric mission, and the addition of the Frequently Returned Items Badge on some product detail pages, confirms that they are always on side with the customer.
If you’re a Seller on Amazon, the Voice of the Customer feature is a great place to start digging a little deeper into the health of your listing. Each ASIN is given a Customer Experience Health score, on a scale from excellent to very poor. Listings that have a very poor Customer Experience Health require some serious work and the issues should be addressed before the listing is taken down. If the listing is taken down, you will be looking at a lengthy appeal process, where Amazon requires you to not only identify and resolve the issues, but also share the measures that you are taking to prevent it happening again in the future.
If you don’t want your listing taken down, then address the issues before it happens. You can use the tool to see the actions that Amazon recommends that you take to resolve the issue. Their first suggestion is usually to update the listing to provide accurate information. You can also see from the screenshot below, that it may not be the product that is actually the problem. In the example given below, we can see that 1 customer out of 6 received an item that they didn’t order. There could have been a variety of reasons why that happened, from something as simple as human error at dispatch, to a bigger problem such as an incorrect barcode on the system. Either way, the best practice is to investigate the issue, find out what caused it and try to prevent it happening again.
Screenshot taken from Amazon
What is the best way to prevent items being returned on Amazon?
The best way to prevent items being returned is by ensuring that your listings are up to date and accurate. The more information the customer has about the product prior to purchasing, the less likely they are to return it over something that they were not expecting.
If you have an item that has a high return rate, find out why! Amazon has a range of features on offer that are designed to help you display more information about your product and brand. If you are doing this effectively, then you shouldn’t be experiencing high return rates, or worrying about the Frequently Returned Products Badge appearing on your listing.
If you need any help optimising your Amazon listings, then please get in touch. The eCommerce Nurse team are a bunch of experts who are waiting to help your brand grow on Amazon.