We all know that Prime Day is a highly anticipated event for Amazon sellers, with huge sales potential. So do your competitors! Amazon sellers must be prepared and must know how to prepare.
The two most important things you need to do are:
1. Protect your account and listings from black hat attacks
2. Ensure your Amazon account and ASINs fully comply with Amazon’s policies
Sales optimization and ads only work, of course, if your listings or account aren’t shut down.
Below are the most common issues we see sellers facing during any high-volume sales period, but particularly around Prime Day.
Violations of Amazon’s Listing Policies
As Prime Day approaches, sellers often make changes to their listings in an attempt to optimize them for increased sales. Unfortunately, these optimization efforts can sometimes lead to policy violations.
Adding restricted keywords (e.g. disease claims, pesticide kill claims, or labeling a product as suitable for children without proper testing ) may trigger flags and restrictions on your listings.
Increasingly, improper variation themes are also used to increase sales rank and review count. While some gurus have trumpeted this as a “below the radar” sales tactic, these could result in a suspension for detail page violations and/or review manipulation. Given the increased scrutiny from the FTC, anything will be possible, from now through the end of this year, at least.
Sellers must understand how essential it is to review and modify their listings carefully. Ensure compliance with Amazon’s policies, or you may be facing deactivation at the worst possible moment. Consider, too, how many sellers will be appealing, all the same time.
Increased Competitor Reporting
During peak sales periods, sellers typically become more vigilant about reporting violations by their competitors. It’s crucial to examine your account and practices in order to avoid giving competitors any reason to report you for non-compliance. Review your listings, sales funnel, and post-purchase sequences, to ensure they are all compliant with Amazon’s Terms of Service. This will reduce the risk of being placed “under review” during Prime Day or fearing an account suspension due to competitor reports. Many sophisticated sellers understand exactly when to report their competition for abuse, too, to inflict the most damage.
On the flip side, if you see your competitors engaging in abusive or anti-competitive behavior, you should definitely report it. Not sure where to start? We can help.
You need to Research and Verify Attacks
When facing ASIN suspensions or listing restrictions, it’s common for sellers to assume they are under attack from competitors. But before pointing fingers, review your own practices to confirm that you have not unintentionally violated Amazon’s policies. Taking this step can help you address the issue effectively and prevent ugly misunderstandings with policy teams.
If, after your investigation, you find no violations on your side, start collecting evidence of an attack so you can report it. It’s important to report abuse to resolve damage caused to your account, but also to show the attacker that you aren’t a soft target. Otherwise, they’re likely to keep coming back. We regularly help sellers report their attackers.
Protect Against ASIN Keyword Abuse
Keyword abuse is one really well-known form of attack during peak sales periods. During Prime Day, competitors could attempt to manipulate your listing content or backend keywords by adding inappropriate or unrelated terms, resulting in a listing suspension by Amazon. We increasingly see attackers do this via Vendor Central, which makes it more difficult to correct the damage. Amazon considers that a “Retail” contribution with the highest level of attribution in Amazon’s catalog. If the teams reading your appeals fail to understand the nature of the attack, they won’t grasp what needs to happen next, and your listing may remain down.
Regularly monitor and review your listings to ensure they comply with Amazon’s guidelines. Use one of several software options to set up listing alerts whenever changes are made to your listings.
By being proactive, and by protecting against backend keyword abuse, you can maintain the integrity of your listings and reduce the risk of suspensions.
Awareness of ASIN Contribution Abuse
ASIN contribution abuse involves unauthorized changes made to your listing by other parties, even if you’re the brand owner. Amazon sellers must be aware that they’ll never have full control over all contributions to their listings.
For example, competitors may attempt to move your products to different and undesirable categories, including unbuyable ones and others with limited purchasing options.
Or, they may try to hijack your listing by changing the brand attribute or other attributes to reflect a different product.
Be sure to monitor your listings and promptly address any unauthorized changes to avoid disruptions to your sales during Prime Day.
Make Prime Day a Success by Protecting and Optimizing Your Listings!
Prime Day presents a tremendous opportunity for sellers to boost their sales and reach a wider audience, but it’s crucial to protect your listings from both external attacks and your own internal mistakes.
By avoiding listing policy violations, researching attacks thoroughly, and being vigilant against backend keyword abuse or ASIN contribution abuse, you will safeguard your ASINs and ensure a successful Prime Day! Prioritize compliance and stay proactive so you can make the most of this peak sales period without unnecessary headaches and the fear of avoidable suspensions.