I don’t want to clutter this response with a regurgitation of the same best practices you can find everywhere and what Amazon clearly posts. Just saying “be the best seller” or “obsess about your customers” doesn’t give you anything actionable.
For reference, we have been selling on amazon for 10 years as an MFN seller via a large drop ship network. We do not do FBA.
Here are the top 7 things you can do to keep negative feedback at a low:
- Do not solicit feedback. This sounds counter intuitive, but most sellers on the amazon forum can agree that solicitation just leads to the awakening of the angry bear. Your customer may be unhappy for many reasons but not ready to vocalize it and happy to communicate with you first. It doesn’t help when you send them a reminder of their bad experience. “but what about getting positive feedback?” you ask. Any customer who really enjoyed their experience will post something nice since Amazon already solicits for them. You don’t need to re-remind them.
- Increase order volume. ODR is a metric based upon order count vs. infractions. Look at your best performing vendors, suppliers, items etc and start to sell more of them. How? Amazon is simple, lower the price. You will see more orders and your metric improve. Does this lower negative feedback? No, but it does give you the chance to have more positive feedback and a fighting chance to not get suspended due to ODR going over 1%.
- Reduce the amount of emails you try to send. Amazon continues to limit the amount of emails you can send to customers and for good reason. They don’t need a flooded inbox from you or Amazon. The strongest email you can send is when the package arrives (hook in with the UPS & Fedex api’s) and get an email out moments after the person gets the package. Open up a line of communication and ask “If anything is not right with your package, contact me right away, we are here to help”. Be the barrier between someone leaving a bad review and spearhead the issue ahead of time.
- Get negative feedback removed. There are 4 main reasons you can have bad feedback removed. Names mentioned, bad language, product review or its an FBA order. You can click the button to have it removed, but Amazon’s algo’s are pretty much useless right now and unless it has swear words or was FBA, the chance of removing it with a button is low. Reach out to an expert for this such as us to get your feedback in check here.
- Run stats on your products & suppliers. If you are an MFN seller and drop shipper, run stats on negative feedback coming from orders derived from certain suppliers. Are they taking too long to ship? Are they putting things in bad packages and getting damaged? Be vigilant here and cut off the bad players.
- 7 days a week customer service. A lot of sellers get caught having more negative feedback on Friday nights and then a ton on Monday AM. Why? Requests from customers need to be answered at all times of the day. Amazon and retail is a 7 day a week business, it does not sleep. Adjust to it.
- Reply within 24 hours to all requests with something actionable. Nothing is more frustrating for a customer than waiting. Waiting without a resolute is even worse. So when you respond to an inquiry, give a solution on the first response. Someone wants to return something? Great. Give them a label based upon their request. An item is broken? Do the same. Don’t string along the customer. This will go to be one of your greatest improvements. This will also cause less negative feedback as consumers will be chatting with you and their expectations met, rather than letting amazon contact them. leads to less A-to-Z claims too.