Amazon seller must know these basics
By: Sam Newlands
Congratulations! You have decided to take the plunge and become an Amazon seller. Now you start the verification process!
Whether you’re a small business trying to get more traffic, or you want to utilize Amazon as a way of making some extra income. Whatever the case may be, Amazon is a lucrative platform for any seller.
When starting the verification process, many sellers get trapped in a seemingly endless loop with Amazon that doesn’t give you all the information you need to get started on their platform.
Let’s start with the basics:
Amazon will tell you to provide a utility bill; typically, they want piped gas, electric, or water/sewer. They will also accept internet bills, and very rarely will they accept a cell phone bill – it has happened, but it’s not often. They will also ask for your business license if applicable. That’s it and is a seemingly straightforward request that should not be difficult to verify.
Welcome to the absurd, convoluted side of Amazon. It would appear a utility bill and, if you have a business license, would be the only things necessary to verify your account, but here are a few things they have left out:
- The utility bill needs to include all pages, not just the first page with your name and address on it. So, if your utility bill is five pages, including a page dedicated to advertisements, all pages need to be included.
- Make sure the logo of the utility bill is present.
- Include your ID, whether it’s a passport or state-issued identification.
- State-issued IDs need to be scanned front and back.
- Have you added credit card and banking information to the account information? Send along the credit card and bank statements. Again, all pages included.
- All documents need to be scanned in color. Amazon will likely deny if documents are scanned in black and white. If your document comes in black and white, don’t stress too much about that, it can be explained.
- Utility bills, bank, and credit card statements should all be from the last 90 days.
- All documents provided need to match the account information in Seller Central. Your name, address, phone, email, etc.
For businesses, add what you can about your business:
LLC, Articles of incorporation, EIN, etc.
Is your account information based on your business, or do you have individuals listed in the Account Info as well? Add those individuals’ IDs to prevent hiccups. Do you not have a utility bill for the business? Ensure the person the utility bill’s name is under is also listed in the account info on Seller Central.
Everything needs to correlate to you or your business. So why doesn’t Amazon tell sellers this information?
From my experience at Amazon and as an Account Manager at Riverbend, Amazon loves the idea of less is more, especially when “helping” sellers. When it comes to seller accounts, they put all accountability on the seller, and the expectation is you already know what you should provide. They have policies and forums that you can ask and verify this info.
While I strongly encourage all of you to keep Amazon policies bookmarked to your browser and doubly encourage all of you to read through them, this can be one less headache for new sellers.
Sam applies her impressive tenacity to get Amazon seller accounts and ASINs reinstated. She enjoys research and looking beyond the surface layer to help sellers solve their issues. While working at Amazon, Sam was involved with the AWS and SES teams looking for fraudulent account activity and unauthorized account take over. Sam is an avid reader, urban explorer and friend to all dogs.