I’ve seen a huge spike of suspended Amazon accounts in 2016. Amazon is getting more serious about performance, likely due to the fact that everyone is now selling on Amazon so they can be more picky in who they want to work with. And if you sell on Amazon, chances are you will at some point deal with warnings or notifications that can or have led to a formal suspension from Amazon. This article is meant to simplify the steps to help you get back reinstated. It is highly recommended you hire a consultant who has dealt with Amazon suspensions before because you’ll get your account back live faster and that’s likely going to save you more money than the cost of hiring the consultant.
Steps to get your Amazon account reinstated from a suspension:
- Read the suspension notice. Attempt to understand it.
- Diagnose the reason suspended, and identify how to adhere the policy Amazon claims you violated.
- Fix the problem.
- THEN – Write an appeal response to the suspension.
- Wait 7 days. Yes 7 days.
- Appeal reviewer will respond – if you submitted a plan and excuted the fix, you get back live.
- IF NOT – they will give you followup requests.
- Address followup requests. Likely in relationship to the execution of your plan, or they want a more detailed plan.
- Wait 3 days.
- If no response after 3 additional days (total 10 days) – write email@example.com to get expedited review.
Alternatively you can:
- Hire a consultant who will do these steps for you, and will lead to faster appeal responses.
How to best take care of your Amazon suspension
Granted, the best way to take care of a suspension is to never get suspended. This means checking the performance notices Amazon sends you. If you check your account health once a week you will see the problems coming from a distance. Amazon is actually pretty lenient and gives you a month notice on possible suspension before actually suspending you. They do this through multiple notices to make a change on your account. If you take no action, you will get suspended.
It is critical that when in writing the appeal, you address the appeal directly in the special notice area and not through a standard Amazon ticket.
Click view appeal. Read it there. (See reasons why your account be suspended.)
Once you understand the appeal, write a response, and fix the problem. You should write 3-5 bullet points. Admit the problem, be concise, and don’t make excuses.
Remember – Amazon’s perspective is the onus is on you as the seller. The onus is on you to have accurate ASINs product listings. The onus is on you to have good metrics like shipping time. The onus is on you to keep your customers happy. Any extenuating circumstances are moot. If you can’t give a world class ecommerce experience to the customer, Amazon is okay with losing your business. With this in mind, follow these best practices.
- Less is more. Write concise bullet points in all communication. This review department doesn’t take direct phone calls. They have tons of paperwork. If you can make it so they can get that you understand the problem and have fixed it in less than 30 seconds, this is ideal. Attaching documents is discouraged – only do if specifically requested.
- Write in bullet points.
- Admit the problem. Admit that you violated the policy. This is the first step. Admitting the problem tells Amazon you get it and can fix it.
- Be patient
Reasons your account could be suspended:
- Poor metrics: Shipping times, customer satisfaction.
- Policy violation: Selling products against Amazon policies such as guns, expired product, or against USA government regulations.
- Product mismatch: If you sell a product that is similar to someone else’s but they aren’t the exact same, make sure you have a unique ASIN. If you sell a 2008 version of a product that has a 2016 version – this is a poor customer experience and Amazon puts the onus on you to separate the ASINs.
- Multiple accounts. You are only allowed one account per IP address/billing address.