New Amazon seller? Here are seven mistakes you need to avoid

Are you setting up an Amazon store? Here are seven common new seller mistakes you need to avoid if you don’t want a ban. 

Launching a store on Amazon is exciting, but can also be confusing. There are many rules and policies you need to follow if you want to keep your store. And there are strict limitations in what you can and can’t do when it comes to promoting and describing your product.

These limitations can be irritating, and it’s tempting to try to find a way around them. But Amazon takes them seriously, and if you do break a rule you’re guaranteed a ban.

So, if you want to avoid getting banned, or making simple errors that could cost you customers, here are seven mistakes to steer clear of on Amazon.

1) Linking to your website

This has been attempted so many times it’s impossible to count, yet it never works. People have tried all sorts of things, from including a link in the product to their business name. And Amazon manages to catch them all.

Trying this results in an instant ban. Amazon doesn’t want people trying to take their customers – who does? So don’t link to your own website from Amazon. It’s best to stick to your own site if you want to do heavy marketing and branding.

2) Not understanding how it works

Amazon isn’t Google or eBay. It’s a closed ecosystem which works in its own way. So make sure that you are aware of all the rules and regulations as well as how it all works, what you have to spend, and if your store is even capable of selling on Amazon.

It’s much better to do this research before you start a store than to start it and end up unsure of what to do and how to behave.

3) Writing poor descriptions and titles

Amazon doesn’t give you many options when it comes to design and branding – descriptions and product names are the same. So if you want to grab shoppers’ attention you need to get creative.

Bullet points are not allowed, bold text is not allowed and neither are other formatting options you would normally use. So if you want your product descriptions to appeal you’ll need to come up with a distinctive tone of voice to make up for the lack of visual creativity. You can read five tips to make microcopy work for you here.

4) Not abiding by the image rules

Everything has a rule on Amazon – including images. And if you don’t abide by them, you’ll get banned. So, for example, you can’t include sales or coupons in your images. Adding any kind of promotional messaging to your images could result in an instant ban.

Not really a rule, but more of a guideline is to use white backgrounds. This makes your product stand out more and makes your store look more professional. Images have to be without watermarks, borders, text or anything similar; just products on a white background. As mentioned, no links to your personal or company profiles are allowed.

5) Using expensive shipping

This is not so much against the rules as a mistake that will cost you business. People won’t buy from you if they see a high shipping price – even if your product is the cheapest one available.

People particularly won’t want to pay for shipping that’s more expensive than the product. So make sure you find an economical way to ship purchases, and pass those savings onto your customers.

6) Being rude to customers

Remember that customers are your source of income, and treat them accordingly – even if they’re difficult. This means practising good customer service and, if someone has a complaint, doing your best to resolve it.

Ignoring an unhappy customer, or even worse, arguing with them, will get you nowhere and you will just end up losing valuable business – plus possibly gain negative reviews. If you do get a bad review, address it in the comments and convey to anyone else checking your reviews out that you tried to fix the customer’s issue.

Find out why great customer service is even more important when you sell online.

7) Not respecting the rules

There are many other rules on Amazon that you need to respect. Their platform is a separate ecosystem with its own regulations. So if you want to build a successful store on Amazon, you need to abide by their rules.

Amazon isn’t hard to figure out once you get the hang of it – you just need to put in the effort in the beginning.

Nora Mork is an ecommerce consultant and columnist at Academized. She helps businesses make effective decisions, and shares ideas by writing posts at online magazines and blogs, such as Oxessays and State of Writing.

Photo by Status Quac