Had your Amazon seller account suspended? Don’t panic—you can still have it reinstated when done right. Get back on track by learning how to handle an Amazon suspension appeal.
A Guide on Managing an Amazon Suspension Appeal
When you’re a seller on the largest online marketplace, getting your account suspended is a nightmare. It translates to lost revenues, with these losses increasing further the longer your account is inactive. Fortunately, you can make a strong case for reversing your suspension with Amazon. Here’s how you should do it.
What an Account Suspension Means
When Amazon suspends your seller’s account, you won’t have selling privileges. During this time, your product listings will not be visible on the platform. It translates to a significant loss in revenues and reputation, especially if you’ve been frequently among the top results.
Depending on the type of account suspension, you can request your status to be reversed and your selling privileges reinstated through an Amazon suspension appeal.
Why Amazon Suspends an Account
The main reason Amazon revokes the privileges of more than a thousand sellers is the latter’s violation of the platform’s guidelines, terms, and conditions. Because of the e-commerce giant’s many complicated policies, some sellers have inadvertently overstepped some of these strict regulations, resulting in their suspension.
Although Amazon doesn’t publicly disclose why they suspend accounts to protect their process, some sellers have figured out a few of the most common reasons for revoked privileges. Some of these include:
- Poor product quality
- Counterfeit or inauthentic items
- Sale of restricted or prohibited products
- Goods are not as advertised
- Intellectual property violations
- Delays in fulfilling orders
- No shipment tracking provided
- Multiple negative customer experiences
- Manipulating reviews or feedback
- Running multiple seller accounts
Amazon’s main priority is its customers, not the sellers. No matter how big a brand or store is, the e-commerce giant will suspend it if it finds reasonable grounds to do so, especially if the complaints come from the buyers.
Despite being strict, the platform allows sellers to request a reversal. They can file an appeal, but it doesn’t always guarantee promising results, especially if done incorrectly.
How to Handle an Account Suspension Appeal
The suspension of your Amazon seller’s account can be catastrophic to your business and finances. Besides lost revenues, you continue incurring operational expenses, such as employee wages, warehousing fees, and other costs, impacting your earnings.
It’s crucial to end the unfavourable status as soon as possible, so below are five tips on efficiently dealing with an Amazon suspension appeal.
1. Never Rush Your Appeal
When Amazon sends a notification regarding account suspension, it only includes a simple explanation for its action. If it’s your first time receiving one, do not panic. Avoid sending out multiple emails asking the online marketplace to reconsider their decision—this hurts your chances of a reversal even more.
Fortunately, Amazon gives suspended accounts a 17-day window to file an appeal for reinstatement through seller central. Take this time to examine your operations and identify possible reasons your selling privileges have been removed.
Also, refrain from asking for more details from Amazon—every communication sent counts as an appeal on their end, further hurting your chances of reinstatement.
2. Be Professional
Another common mistake made by many online sellers on their Amazon suspension appeal is responding with high emotions. It’s only expected that you’d be angry over the sudden deactivation, especially if you’ve been faithfully abiding by the rules.
Never use foul language, threats, and emotional appeal in your response. Avoid criticising the e-commerce giant’s policies and processes—your opinion is unwarranted and unprofessional. Plus, it puts you in a less favourable position in their eyes.
Instead, be concise with your communication and remain professional in every interaction. Amazon will likely be more considerate of your situation.
3. Perform a Comprehensive Assessment
Use the 17-day period to conduct an internal assessment of your operations and performance. Begin your investigation based on Amazon’s disclosed justification in its suspension notice.
For example, if Amazon suspended your account for sub-par performance, check the metrics in your seller central dashboard. Below are acceptable performance ratios:
- Order defect rate <1.0%
- Pre-fulfilment cancellation rate <2.5%
- Late shipment rate <4.0%
Order defect rate: The ratio of orders with negative feedback, chargebacks, or A-Z guarantee claims to total completed orders.
Pre-fulfilment cancellation rate: The ratio of orders you’ve cancelled prior to shipping out vis-à-vis total orders received.
Late shipment rate: The percentage of items dispatched past the estimated shipping date.
Since Amazon doesn’t go into specifics regarding your suspension, the problem may have also stemmed from violating one of the online marketplace’s many rules. It can range from selling counterfeit goods and unauthorised product distribution to offering discounts in exchange for positive reviews and copyright infringement.
4. Create a Solid Plan of Action
Suspensions vary in severity—the more serious it is, the longer the reinstatement may take or the less likely the appeal will be successful. But don’t despair—a well-constructed Amazon suspension appeal can overturn a punishment.
When the e-commerce giant requests a Plan of Action, refrain from submitting a generic plan. Amazon will usually detail what should be included, such as supporting documents like invoices and product safety information. Furnish them to strengthen your case.
Your Plan of Action should cover the following:
- Root cause analysis: Identifies the reason for suspension or offence based on your internal examination
- Remediation: Discusses actionable steps to rectify or address the problem
- Preventative section: Outlines clear corrective measures to prevent future violations, reiterating your intention to continue providing top-notch customer service
Remember to keep your Plan of Action brief but comprehensive. While Amazon prefers data-driven, fact-based appeals, it’s also essential to admit fault and acknowledge the harm done to your buyers.
If you’d rather not take chances with your Amazon suspension appeal, consult an expert from Sterlinx Global.
5. Avoid Asking for Updates Immediately
After sending your appeal through the proper channel, refrain from requesting updates immediately. Wait for at least 48 hours before sending a follow-up email; generally, Amazon acknowledges receipt of your appeal.
Sometimes, the e-commerce giant requests clarifications or supplementary information. Do your best to respond right away since the 17-day window doesn’t pause or reset. If you don’t provide the information, Amazon may reject your appeal.
Frequently Asked Questions
What will happen if I don’t file an appeal?
If you forgo filing an appeal, do not expect your account to be reinstated. Amazon takes customer complaints and policy violations seriously, which is why they’ve revoked your selling privileges.
Keep in mind that submitting an appeal is a formal process and one that sellers should be aware of.
If my account gets suspended, should I open another account instead?
No. While you can open another seller account, don’t do it—Amazon will treat such action as circumventing your suspension, jeopardizing your chances of reinstating your privileges.
Moreover, the platform treats multiple seller accounts as a policy violation, putting you further into an unfavourable position.
What should I do if my appeal gets denied?
If Amazon denies your suspension appeal, don’t despair—you still have another chance to submit your Plan of Action. Revise it to be more detail-oriented.
There is no limit to how many times you can re-submit your plan. However, the longer it takes to reactivate your account, the higher your losses. Speak to a professional, like someone from Sterlinx Global, to draft a better appeal.
Getting your account suspended isn’t something you want to happen, but when it does, look at the bright side of your ordeal. Knowing how to navigate negative circumstances and manage an Amazon suspension appeal is an excellent learning experience for sellers.
Implement long-lasting changes to ensure you’re always up to par with Amazon’s quality standards. And if you need help on where to start, let the professionals at Sterlinx Global lend a hand.