You put your blood sweat and tears into crafting the perfect Amazon listing. Sales are on the rise and you’re feeling great. Selling on Amazon is the best! Then suddenly, seemingly out of the blue your listing gets suspended! Every minute that you’re unable to sell feels critical to your brand’s credibility and your business’ bottom line. You need to get back selling FAST!
While suspension is a major stressor for Amazon sellers, we want you to know that the world isn’t going to come to an end and there are things you can do to help resolve the issue. So take some deep breaths, clear your mind of all of those “what-if” scenarios that are floating around and let’s get to work!
The first step in resolving a suspension is to determine why you got suspended in the first place. Amazon will notify you of your suspension in the “Performance Notifications” section of your Seller Central account. The top three reasons for suspensions are:
- A major increase of returns or bad reviews: If your product’s performance has shown a downward trend, Amazon will try to protect itself and its customers by putting a hold on your ability to sell on the platform.
- A violation of Amazon’s terms of service: Amazon’s ever-changing set of rules and regulations can make it especially difficult to ensure that you are compliant. Staying on top of Amazon’s TOS is critical to maintaining your selling status.
- Selling a restricted product: There are limitations to what you can sell on Amazon, and you must be very careful not to misrepresent your product, sell anything in violation of Amazon policies, and maintain the various approvals needed to sell your product. This is especially true of ingestible or topical products. For example, recently some CBD products have been riding the line of complying with Amazon’s restriction policies. They are having to constantly verify that they are not mislabeling their products or misleading their customers.
So now that you’ve determined the why behind your suspension, you need to create a plan of action to resolve the issue. If your returns and bad reviews have increased, you may need to revamp your customer service or put some better systems in place to ensure customer complaints are handled more effectively. If the issue was violating policies, you may need to change your listing. If your product is restricted, you may need to alter your packaging or get the proper approvals from Amazon.
The best way to resolve any suspension is to own your mistake and reaffirm to Amazon your desire to make things right. They want to see you are trustworthy and committed to being a legitimate seller, and not someone who simply wants to take advantage of the platform. Amazon is a well-oiled machine, and they don’t want a disruption to their system. Suspensions are their way of quickly and efficiently eliminating a product they deem to be problematic to their platform for one reason or another. It may not always make sense to you, but just understand that if you want to be a successful seller on Amazon, you need to play by their rules. If you can make it as easy as possible on them to reinstate you, by making an action plan and coming to them with that plan already in place, you’re going to be much more likely to have your suspension lifted quickly.
Once you have a plan to address the reason for the suspension, you can start the process of getting your listing reinstated. Go back to the “Performance Notification” section in Seller Central, and click “Appeal” next to the suspension notice. This is where you’ll let Amazon know your plan to resolve the reason for the suspension. Be very clear that you understand the issue and that you have a detailed strategy to address the problem. Even better, explain how you’ve already started executing that plan.
Be respectful, professional, and decisive when it comes to explaining your plan of action. Be concise and direct (bullet points are fine) when addressing the reason for the suspension and the solution to the issue, and don’t get off track with extra information unrelated to the rectification of the issue that caused the suspension. No matter how upset you are about the suspension, do not use this appeal as a platform to express your frustration. The last thing Amazon wants to see is a message from a disgruntled seller arguing about the suspension and complaining about the injustice of it all. This tactic will not motivate them to move things along for you.
In the event the suspension is more complicated, and the appeal is not effective in getting the suspension lifted, we would recommend using the services of Thompson and Holt. They are experts at suspensions on Amazon and they would love to help you troubleshoot the issue so you can get back to growing your product sales.
Above all, don’t let a suspension get you down. You now have the knowledge to get the issue resolved, so you can get back to selling. If you’re in need of an Amazon expert to help you through issues like suspensions, effectively managing your listings, growing the number of customer reviews your product has, etc… we would love to chat with you about the services we offer at TurnKey Product Management. Come check us out and let us show you how you can take you Amazon sales to the next level!