How to respond when Amazon suspends your ASIN

Sep 27, 2021

By: James May

If you’ve been unfortunate enough to have had your ASIN or account suspended by Amazon, you know there are a lot of immediate emotions that come up when you get that email… not the least of which are anger, disbelief and fear. The problem is, with all those feelings at play, there are a lot of mistakes you might inadvertently make when responding to Amazon.

There are many reasons why the suspension may have happened. Maybe it’s just Amazon trying to find out where you source your products; or it’s a competitor trying to minimize the competition, or perhaps it’s an unhappy customer that just cannot be pleased. In the end, it really doesn’t matter why it is down. As a seller, you just want to get the situation resolved and get your business back up and running.

Don’t let emotion ruin a reinstatement appeal email

If you fire off a heated email to Amazon, making sure to mention how the customer ruined the package; or that it was UPS’s fault for stepping on the box, Amazon will unemotionally respond with the dreaded ‘That is not good enough, try again’ message. Emotion has no place in the appeal, it is all a matter of what YOU, the seller, could have done better. That is all part of the culture in Amazon: owning up to your mistakes.

To get reinstated, stick to the facts

There are a series of steps, if you will, that happen with every item you sell, and within those steps there are opportunities to do better. That is what Amazon really wants to hear: how you will do it better next time. This is the key to getting reinstated.

If an item arrived dirty, then let Amazon know you’ve instituted a step between when you receive it and when you send it to the customer, or Amazon, to have it QC inspected or cleaned. If the item arrived out of date, then ensure a process that checks those dates before they are sent to the end customer. There is enough time in the supply chain when checks and balances could be introduced that will not impact the final delivery date, but definitely impacts how it is received and in what condition.

In the end, what Amazon wants to know is what you will do to make sure the customer gets the item in the condition they ordered—and expect—from you. Almost all item-level issues can be resolved by actions you the seller will take to make it better moving forward.

Be generically specific with your ASIN appeal

While being asked to address an issue with a single ASIN, this is also a great opportunity to address any of those issues that have been nagging in your system for a while. Along with understanding what you will do to fix the immediate issue, Amazon wants to see you using this as an opportunity to be a better seller on the platform overall. This will give you a chance to implement changes in your shipping and receiving processes to make sure that all items are checked for accuracy and undergo a QC process every time.

It also gives you the opportunity to reach out to the experts and learn more tools of the trade. There are resources and partners around the world that openly show their process—from receiving to storage to shipping— so there is always more knowledge to be gained. Even established sellers will reinvent or experiment with new processes from time to time to create even more efficiencies.

Amazon likely doesn’t know what your account is about

Unless you are one of the Top 50 sellers on Amazon, it is likely Amazon has no idea who you are or what you do. While your company is your baby that you’ve grown and nurtured from the start, it is unlikely Amazon has been aware of your journey. During the appeal process, you get to tell them all about your brand and the products you sell.

You also get to share what processes you have in place, and everything you have done to make every order run smoothly. This is also where you get to point out the things you are working on to improve the process or the customer experience. But unless you are hiding a Mary Poppins, there is no way you are doing it practically perfect every time…but you can get close. Use this opportunity to share with Amazon what you are doing well and what you are working on to improve.

If you receive a suspension letter from Amazon, get in touch with us today. We’re here to help.

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