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Amazon Seller Questions Answered: Essential Insights For Ecommerce Entrepreneurs

amazon-seller-questions-answered:-essential-insights-for-ecommerce-entrepreneurs
Amazon Seller Questions Answered: Essential Insights For Ecommerce Entrepreneurs

A man sitting down thinking about a decision on Amazon seller questions.

Before selling on the marketplace, there are a myriad of Amazon seller questions one should know. In this post, we will walk you through these various seller topics from the Featured Offer down to Amazon tools.

What is the Amazon Buy Box and why is it important for sellers?

Get your product in front of more people with Amazon Featured Offer (formerly Amazon Buy Box). These are new product offers shown to the right on product detail pages with an “Add to Cart” option. By winning this, your products can show up on other product detail pages. This means you have a chance of getting the purchase instead of the competition. 

What factors determine eligibility for winning the Buy Box?

The two main factors are:

  • You need to be a Professional Plan seller
  • Your items are “Featured Offer” eligible 

Amazon also considers

  • Competitive pricing 
  • If stock is always available 
  • Excellent customer service and overall good account health 
  • Fast delivery and free shipping 

A-to-Z Guarantee Program

What is Amazon’s A-to-Z Guarantee program and how does it protect customers?

The Amazon A-to-Z Guarantee is a claim that buyers can make against third-party sellers on Amazon as a means of protection. Buyers who have ordered on Amazon are eligible to file this claim if one or more of the following conditions are met:

  • They have not gotten their package within the three day estimated delivery date. Additionally, a seller must also have not replied within 48 hours nor attempted to fix the issue.
  • A buyer has made a return request but the seller has not authorized it. 
  • The seller has not provided a valid return label.
  • They haven’t gotten their refund as per the Return Policies. 
  • An international seller fails to reimburse extra shopping costs, provide a return label or address, or a refund

How can sellers avoid A-to-Z claims and ensure customer satisfaction?

  • Respond to messages as soon as possible 
  • Ensure complete order fulfillment
  • For FBM, choose reliable couriers 
  • Maintain a consistent level of customer service for returns and refunds

Pricing Strategies

A woman with a marker in front of a whiteboard.

What is Amazon Automate Pricing and how can it benefit sellers?

Because there is such an emphasis on pricing, this is one of the most common Amazon seller questions. Amazon Automate Pricing a feature that allows Amazon to take care of pricing your SKUs competitively. It’s available to Professional plan sellers. Because pricing fluctuates constantly with competition, manual changes take a lot of time. Automation allows you to focus on other areas of business while Amazon keeps you in the running.

How should sellers set pricing rules to stay competitive yet profitable?

Automation only works for SKUs that you specifically select for this type of pricing method. If you want to be hands off with pricing and let Amazon take over, you need to set them one by one. Some of the rules that you can set include the Competitive Price Match Rule and the Featured Offer Rule. Both of these increase your Featured Offer winning chances. Remember, you still need to set criteria that the automation follows. This includes your minimum and maximum limits for pricing. Amazon will adjust your prices based on this range so that you stay eligible for the Featured Offer. 

Account Health Management

What is the Account Health Rating (AHR) on Amazon and why does it matter?

The AHR is a score that determines how well you are performing on the platform. Your account health drops when you commit a policy violation. The main factors Amazon considers includes your Order Defect Rate (ODR), Shipping Performance, and Pre-Fulfillment Cancellation Rate. Poor account health and unresolved policy violations can lead to account suspension and termination. 

How can sellers maintain a healthy AHR and avoid policy violations?

  • Know the rules and follow them
  • Stay updated on policy changes 
  • Provide an excellent customer experience
  • Monitor your ODR, cancellation rate, seller feedback and other important Amazon account KPIs 

Seller Fulfilled Prime (SFP)

What is Seller Fulfilled Prime and how does it differ from Amazon FBA?

FBA or Fulfilled by Amazon is a model where Amazon handles shipping, and order fulfillment. Sellers then pay FBA fees in exchange for the service. SFP is the same as FBM in that sellers must shoulder the responsibility of order fulfillment. SFP sellers must adhere to Amazon’s standards in order to qualify and remain in the program. They can offer one to two-day Prime shipping to Prime customers. 

What are the requirements and benefits of enrolling in Seller Fulfilled Prime?

Requirements for SFP include:

  • Being an FBM merchant 
  • Pre-qualify for the trial of Seller Fulfilled Prime
  • Meet the requirements of the 30-day trial 
  • Continue to meet SFP program requirements, including free standard shipping 

The main benefits are:

  • For buyers: Fast delivery and low shipping costs 
  • For seller: Mark of quality and trustworthiness, customers are more likely to prefer this, Featured Offer advantages 

Customer Communication

A woman talking on a headset and pointing at a computer monitor.

How should sellers contact customers about their orders on Amazon?

The recommended way to contact buyers is through the Message Center and Amazon’s Buyer Seller Messaging Service. This makes correspondence and customer service easier. Amazon monitors all correspondence between buyer and seller through this service. There are rigid communication guidelines in place and failure to meet these guidelines can lead to penalties. This includes prohibiting any kind of marketing, promotions, and links to websites. 

What are the best practices for resolving customer conflicts effectively?

This is probably one of the most important Amazon seller questions. Customer experience is key on Amazon. If you aren’t offering the best support or service, Amazon could penalize your account. 

  • Be understanding, courteous, and accommodating 
  • Answer correspondence within less than 24 hours
  • Always refer to Amazon Community and Communication Guidelines 

Using Coupons for Promotion

How do sellers create and utilize coupons in Amazon Seller Central?

Coupons are a great way to grab attention and boost your Amazon sales
You can create coupons through Seller Central in the Coupons dashboard. It’s under Advertising via the menu on the top left. You can then create your own coupon and see any coupons you’ve already created. You can also edit and deactivate them here. 

What strategies can be employed to maximize the impact of coupons?

  • Undercut the competition indirectly through coupons
  • Using coupons allows you to show up on Amazon’s coupon page. This greatly increases your chance of getting a sale.
  • Use coupons to help move inventory faster. This helps if goods are nearly expired. If overstocked, it may help prevent paying certain storage fees. 

Sales and Account Setup

How do sellers get notified about sales on Amazon?

You can set up notifications through Seller Central or the Amazon Seller app. You can choose to receive order-related notifications through text or email. 

What is the process and timeline for Amazon Seller account verification?

Here are the steps to get started on Amazon:

  • Create an account by signing up through (link)
  • Select a Selling plan 
  • Enter the verification code sent to your email address 
  • Prepare the documents they request 
  • Select business type, location, and enter your full name
  • Provide personal information, including identification
  • Provide billing information (bank and credit card)
  • Answer some questions related to your store and products you plan to sell 
  • Submit information for identity verification
  • Complete a call with an Amazon Associate to finish verifying documents and identity 

All in all the process should take 1-2 days if they find no issues with your documents. 

Choosing Between Vendor and Seller Central

A man teaching another man some Amazon seller tips from his tablet.

What are the differences between Vendor Central and Seller Central?

This is one of the Amazon seller questions you should be asking prior to signing up on the platform. Vendor Central is for first-party sellers like manufacturers or distributors selling their products to Amazon wholesale. Amazon then takes charge of pricing, selling, and order fulfillment for those products on the platform. Seller Central is for third-party sellers using the marketplace to sell to customers via a storefront. 

How does each platform impact the control and freedom of sellers?

Unlike vendors, sellers have the option to fulfill orders themselves. They can also decide their pricing, profit margins, and brand messaging. While sellers have more control, they also must be more hands-on compared to vendors. Vendors also surrender customer service to Amazon. Because of Amazon’s strict messaging guidelines, some might prefer this option. 

Product Compliance

What types of products require inspections and certifications before selling?

Some products in certain categories must pass certification for safety reasons. This includes products related to health, beauty, pet food, medical equipment, automotive, aerospace, and children’s toys. Also, products through FBA must also meet FBA standards. While not a requirement, it’s wise to perform product inspections to check product quality and adherence to Amazon guidelines. 

How can sellers ensure their products comply with Amazon’s standards?

The Amazon Product Compliance Documentation page and Amazon Compliance Reference tool are good resources to refer to. 

Leveraging Amazon Support Tools

What are the key Amazon tools and resources available for seller support?

There are more than a handful of tools that improve the seller experience on Amazon. These include tools included within Amazon selling plans as well as third-party software. These help with multiple aspects of seller experience, including keyword research, product research, marketing, analytics and more. Amazon tools include:

  • Automate Pricing
  • Product Opportunity Explorer 
  • Manage Your Customer Engagement 

Amazon-approved software include:

  • Seller App
  • Jungle Scout
  • FeedbackFive 

How can sellers effectively use these tools to resolve selling issues?

Software and automation tools not only speed up certain processes but also help to reduce errors. If you’re having trouble with price wars, automating pricing can save you a lot of stress. Email marketing software can help you get your products in front of more people while staying compliant. Whatever area you’re struggling with at the moment, there’s likely already a tool out there for you. 

What Is EcomBalance? 

EcomBalance is a monthly bookkeeping service specialized for eCommerce companies selling on Amazon, Shopify, Ebay, Etsy, WooCommerce, & other eCommerce channels.

We take monthly bookkeeping off your plate and deliver you your financial statements by the 15th or 20th of each month.

You’ll have your Profit and Loss Statement, Balance Sheet, and Cash Flow Statement ready for analysis each month so you and your business partners can make better business decisions.

Interested in learning more? Schedule a call with our CEO, Nathan Hirsch.

And here’s some free resources:

Conclusion

Selling on a new platform can be tricky. There are a lot of things to learn and the learning curve can be overwhelming at times. Now you have the answers to these common Amazon seller questions. You can begin your selling journey better informed and with more confidence. 

This article originally appeared on EcomBalance Blog and is available here for further discovery.
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