Avoid Being Suspended by Amazon

Once you are suspended from selling on Amazon, the process for applying for reinstatement is involved, time-consuming and in many cases, may turn out to be unsuccessful. Your best defense is a strong offense in making sure that you are following the Amazon Policies for account creation, listing and seller performance.

Your Amazon agreement will outline the Amazon policies. Additionally, Seller Central will provide details on these policies and product restrictions by category.

At ChannelAdvisor, the main reasons we see for seller suspension are:

  1. Opening a New Account Under a New Name after Having Been Suspended
  2. Setting Up and Selling the Same Products Out of Two Amazon Accounts
  3. Selling Restricted or Unauthorized Products
  4. Poor Seller Performance

1. Opening a New Account Under a New Name after Having Been Suspended

Usually there is no warning in this situation. If you are suspended from selling on Amazon and you open a new account, Amazon may find you via IP or other detection methods and will close the new account.

2. Setting Up and Selling the Same Products Out of Two Amazon Accounts

Amazon allows two selling accounts only for legitimate business reasons and the seller must seek approval prior to setting up the second account.

The Amazon policy states:

Operating and maintaining multiple seller accounts is prohibited. If you have a legitimate business need for a second selling account, you can apply for an exception to this policy. Contact Seller Support and choose "Other account issues" from the "Account Settings" section of the form. In your request, please provide an explanation of the legitimate business need for a second account. Also note that in order to be considered for approval, you must:

  1. Have an account in good standing with excellent Customer Metrics
  2. Have a separate e-mail address and bank account for the new account
  3. Not intend to sell the same products in both accounts

Our sellers often raise the question about being able to list a single SKU which is both Fulfilled by Amazon (FBA) and Seller-Fulfilled. Products that are fulfilled via FBA are treated differently by Amazon in terms of Buy Box access as well as exposure to Prime and Super-Saver Shipping buyers. Some sellers would like to accomplish this in two different Amazon accounts. At this time, Amazon and ChannelAdvisor would recommend that the only way to achieve this is to maintain two separate SKUs (they may match to the same ASIN in Amazon) in ChannelAdvisor and listed via the same Amazon account.

3. Selling Restricted or Unathorized Products

Some categories are restricted and some require pre-approval. Additionally, some product types within allowed categories are restricted. You should be familiar with these requirements before listing. Amazon will typically warn and give sellers time to remove the listing(s). If the products are re-listed, Amazon may suspended and getting reinstated will be difficult. You should not ignore the warnings that Amazon sends and you should be proactive in reviewing their requirements, removing restricted products and responding to their warnings with a plan of action.

Categories where we see the most monitoriing are medical devices, jewelry, health supplements.  Additionally, products that are suspect for counterfeit or are not authorized for resale by the manufacturer are also commonly flagged. See Prohibited Content for more information.

Also, review your inventory for items that are in violation of Amazon's Policies and Agreements.
 

4. Poor Seller Metrics

Amazon takes Seller performance and the customer experience very seriously. A seller can monitor their performance in relation to the Amazon targets from the ChannelAdvisor 360 Dashboard. A Seller will typically be warned that their performance metrics are falling below and will be given an opportunity to improve. Sellers should continuously evaluate their selling practices so an not to lead to buyer dissatisfaction.

From the Amazon policies:

All sellers should be working toward achieving and maintaining a level of customer service that meets the following seller performance targets:

  • Order defect rate: < 1%
  • Pre-fulfilment cancel rate: < 2.5%
  • Late shipment rate: < 4%

Failure to meet these targets may result in the removal of your selling privileges.

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