There are few things as crucial to your Amazon business as your Seller Feedback rating.
Buyers use this rating to judge you against other sellers. If the rating is neutral or low, there’s a good chance shoppers won’t trust your business and make a purchase.
Beyond building buyer trust, your Seller Feedback rating is considered by Amazon’s algorithms to measure your performance—and whether your products should be more or less visible. The marketplace is more likely to place products in the Buy Box and rank them higher in search if their seller has high feedback.
Affecting how both Amazon and shoppers view your business, the Seller Feedback rating has a huge impact on whether your sales grow or plummet. At the same time, positive feedback is challenging to collect due to both resistant buyer psychology and Amazon’s marketplace restrictions.
We’ll cover these obstacles and explain how to overcome them with ways to collect positive feedback. With a higher rating, you’ll improve both shoppers’ and Amazon’s perspective of your business to help you boost your sales.
Why Positive Feedback Is Hard to Collect
Even if you’re doing everything right as an Amazon seller—you’re delivering on time, you resolve customer issues quickly—your rating might not be as high as you’d expect. Collecting positive feedback is difficult for a few key reasons.
According to psychologists, our brains are more focused on negative events than positive ones. Some argue that this is an evolutionary development—we’re more attuned to negative threats as a mechanism for survival.
With this negativity bias, Amazon shoppers are more likely to leave negative reviews than positive ones. According to Zendesk, shoppers are 15% more likely to share their negative customer review on social media than their positive feedback. The negative experience clearly has a stronger impact on the shopper. Feeling mistreated, they’re seeking some sort of a response—either an apology, possibly reimbursement, or maybe just reactions from other shoppers.
After a positive experience, though, buyers aren’t motivated to take action because everything is already going well. Why ruminate over the positive experience and leave feedback when there’s nothing left to be done? With this psychological tendency, you have to give shoppers an extra push to encourage good reviews.
Here’s the caveat: Amazon limits the ways you can request feedback from shoppers.
To preserve the authenticity of reviews, the marketplace restricts sellers from incentivizing positive ratings. Here’s their official rule on requesting feedback:
You may request feedback from a buyer, however you may not pay or offer any incentive to a buyer for either providing or removing feedback.
With this rule in place, you can’t offer free samples or any sort of compensation in exchange for positive feedback. Shoppers’ ratings depend on the quality of the customer experience.
Likewise, Amazon doesn’t permit sellers to request specific types of feedback or actions on feedback—all requests must be neutral.
You may ask buyers to write a review in a neutral manner, but you may not ask for positive reviews, ask for reviews only from buyers who had a positive experience, or ask a reviewer to change or remove their review.
Between these restrictions and buyers’ negativity bias, collecting positive feedback is challenging as an Amazon buyer. You have to create shopping experiences that are stellar and seem remarkable enough for customers to leave a great rating.
6 Ways to Get More Positive Feedback
Getting positive feedback on Amazon requires a hybrid of tactics: You persistently yet gently request input from buyers while also doing everything to provide excellent customer service. Ideally, the latter strategy naturally encourages great seller ratings—your outstanding service sticks out enough to buyers to warrant a review. Realistically though, you should also have a system for reminding customers about feedback in case they don’t remember to leave a rating.
Combining both requests and high-quality customer service, here are six ways to get more positive feedback from Amazon buyers.
1. Email customers about feedback
Buyers with good shopping experiences are less motivated to leave reviews, so it’s helpful to give them an extra nudge with a request to leave feedback.
Amazon already technically asks buyers for feedback on their orders after they’re delivered, but the messages are impersonal. With a generic feel, these emails are easy to ignore as a shopper.
Instead, it’s better to send your own unique message through Amazon’s Buyer-Seller Messaging Service. Communicating with the shopper yourself not only gives you more control over feedback reminders but also adds a personal touch to your business that Amazon shoppers appreciate.
Here are three suggested messages for requesting feedback from buyers:
- One email thanking them after they’ve placed their order. Don’t request feedback just yet—use this email to let the customer know that you are there to help if they have any issues.
- One email two days after delivery to request feedback. Reiterate that you’re there to help if there are any product issues, ask in a neutral way for their feedback, and provide a link where they can leave a seller rating.
Not sure what to include in these messages? You can find templates for requesting feedback here.
Beyond exact wording, here are general suggestions for crafting these messages in a way that delights buyers:
- Keep your message brief. Anything beyond four to six sentences will probably lose buyers’ attention.
- Stay courteous and helpful. Be sure to express that you hope they had a good experience, and ask them to reach out if they experience any issues. Otherwise, your feedback request will seem self-interested and detract shoppers.
- Don’t offer incentives; use a neutral tone. Violating these rules could result in your message being reported to Amazon by buyers.
- Don’t send more than two emails. Sending more will annoy buyers and make them more likely to unsubscribe from your messages (yes, they can do that).
- Be personable and be yourself. Adding your brand logo, including unique fonts, and signing off with your name are ways to make your email feel a bit more human. These touches are rarely seen on Amazon’s corporate marketplace, so they can leave an extra-powerful impression on shoppers, helping them feel more connected with and trusting of your business.
Sending these email requests in the right fashion—courteously, quickly, not too frequently—will give buyers the extra push they need to leave positive feedback.
2. Automate email requests
Using Amazon’s Buyer-Seller Messaging Service for every feedback request might not seem too time intensive when your business is just beginning. Perhaps you’re selling only a few products, so you have the time to write each email.
But as your Amazon business grows, personally sending each message will become a time sucker. Instead, it’s more efficient to use an automatic feedback-request service. These platforms connect to your Amazon account so that reminders to leave feedback can be automatically sent to buyers.
Here’s a roundup of some of the top automatic feedback services:
- Feedback Express
- Features: Send perfectly-timed feedback and product review requests to your Amazon customers. Get alerts via email or SMS when you receive negative feedback before your account is adversely affected. The software helps sellers to improve their Amazon seller metrics and win more Buy Box.
- Price: 30 day free trial then plans start at $20 per month.
- Features: You customize the timing and frequency of soliciting feedback.
- Price: Free to $60/month
- Feedback Genius
- Features: Allows you to automatically send feedback requests based on a number of filters, such as delivery time, whether the buyer already left feedback, and more.
- Price: Free to $250/month
Using one of these automated services will give you more time to focus on other areas of your Amazon business while still encouraging positive feedback from buyers.
3. Leave a message through packing slips
Besides emailing, you can also leave buyers a reminder to leave feedback on your orders’ packing slips. If the delivery went well, the buyer will be happy with your business right when they receive the order. With the shopper feeling satisfied, there’s a good chance they’ll feel compelled to review your business after reading the packing slip note.
The challenge with this is that it’s more work for a recipient to actually take action. It takes more effort for the buyer to leave a rating after reading a packing slip than it does to click through with a digital link.
But that shouldn’t deter sellers from trying this tactic. The opposite, in fact. Notes, especially handwritten ones, are the type of personal touch that often makes people more devoted to your brand.
Not sure what to say? Here’s an easy sample message to include.
Thank you for your order. At your convenience, please let us know about your shopping experience by leaving a seller rating. [sign your name]
To request feedback, you can either handwrite a quick note at the bottom of packing slips or use an outside service to create custom slips. Here are a few custom packing slip services:
A note on a packing slip does require more work from buyers—they have to go on Amazon’s site and find your seller rating page instead of immediately reaching it through a link. Still, the packing-slip note has a good chance of encouraging positive feedback since it’s nonintrusive and personal.
4. Respond to buyer requests promptly
Getting more positive ratings requires more than feedback requests. You also have to provide customer service that’s actually worthy of a five-star rating.
The key isn’t aiming for zero buyer issues—that’s not realistic. Instead, you should strive to quickly resolve problems as they arise. The more promptly you respond to shoppers’ requests, the more they’ll appreciate your business.
If you have trouble remembering to message buyers, here are a few tactics to improve your customer communication skills:
- Don’t let 24 hours pass. A longer wait time will seem rude to shoppers. On the other hand, responding in under 12 hours will wow buyers.
- Set a daily calendar reminder to go through messages. Responding to emails often isn’t the most difficult task, so pick a time when your productivity is at a medium or low level.
- Aim for inbox zero each day. Replying to all outstanding buyer messages by the end of the day keeps you on track to continuously provide great service instead of letting requests pile up.
If you solve buyers’ problems ASAP with consistent messaging, shoppers will value your service enough to leave a positive rating.
5. Monitor your seller performance metrics
Ensure that your customer service is worthy of great feedback with measurements of your performance.
Conveniently, Amazon already measures your performance through Seller Central, so you can easily track the quality of your customer service. You can find these metrics by visiting the Performance tab of Seller Central.
The Account Health page provides metrics that allow you to assess your performance. Compare your measurements to the benchmarks that Amazon has set for great seller performance:
- Order Defect Rate: <1%
- Pre-fulfillment Cancel Rate: <2.5%
- Late Shipment Rate: <4%
Note which metrics in your Performance tab aren’t meeting Amazon’s targets, and assess your seller practices to see how those measurements could be improved. To figure out what might have contributed to changes in your metrics, it’s helpful to track when you start customer service initiatives, such as writing packing slip notes.
By monitoring your seller performance, you’ll have a clear sense of how your practices can be improved to encourage more positive feedback.
6. Prioritize and solve recurring issues
Once you’ve identified recurring problems, identify specific ways you can solve those issues. Finding long-term solutions for consistent issues is a major step toward receiving more positive feedback and building up your average rating.
Based on common reasons for negative seller ratings, here are suggestions for making improvements to your seller practices:
- Stock-outs: Use an inventory management software—like our platform, Sellbrite—to stay organized with your stock and avoid overselling.
- Late shipments: Upgrade a product to expedite shipping if you need to ship it out later than expected. If it still won’t be delivered on time, make sure you notify the buyer ASAP. Communicating the issue early-on will often reduce the likelihood that the shopper will be upset.
- Product not as described: Provide clear, high-quality images of your products so that buyers can visually see exactly what they’re purchasing. You should also fully, accurately, and carefully describe your product to meet buyers’ expectations.
- Slow responses: Follow the tips in section 4 to create a habit of promptly resolving customers’ issues.
By creating a plan for reducing recurring buyer issues, you have a reliable framework for improving your customer service to delight more shoppers and receive more positive feedback.
Building your rating takes work, but pays off
Maintaining a high Amazon seller rating is critical to your business’s success. Without positive feedback, buyers won’t trust you as a merchant and won’t feel comfortable purchasing, and Amazon’s algorithms will minimize your products’ visibility. Maintain your reputation and both the marketplace and the shoppers will help boost your sales.
Getting this positive feedback takes work, though, so you need a plan for how you’re going to collect great ratings. We’ve laid out six strategies to help you gently encourage positive feedback from shoppers without violating Amazon’s rules, and we’ve suggested ways to provide excellent customer service to encourage great ratings. Follow these tips to slowly but surely build up to a high seller rating that drives more purchases.