Jul 2, 2018

The Dos and Don’ts of Discounts & Amazon Product Reviews

Product reviews on Amazon are extremely important for getting a new product off the ground and for making sales. Not only do customers highly value reviews as a source of information, but reviews also factor into Amazon’s A9 ranking algorithm. Because of this, Amazon sellers are often willing to skirt the line between acceptable and unacceptable. In this article, we explain what you are and are not allowed to do to solicit reviews, with regards to discounted products.

Incentivized Reviews

In October 2016, Amazon made a big policy change that altered how sellers could generate reviews. That is, they banned incentivized reviews. Prior to this change, sellers would offer people discounted or free items in exchange for reviews- usually with the explicit, or at least implied, expectation of a strictly positive review.

Doing this now is strictly prohibited. However, you can still solicit reviews from people who have bought discounted products.

Discount Promotions for Reviews

If you want to get reviews from people who have bought your products at discount, there are a few things to consider:

You cannot make the discount dependent on the review.

You can give away discounts- whether single-use promotion codes or simply running a promotion right on the Amazon page. And you can get reviews from those who bought from you. But you cannot make the discount dependent on the review. You cannot, for instance, say “Hey, I’ll give you a 40% discount off this product, if you leave a review.”

Instead, you would have to simply give away the discounts. And then, later on, ask those people who bought the discounted goods to leave you a review. Alternatively, you can simply make the sales & hope that some percentage of buyers will leave a review.

Running Facebook Ads to promote your discounted product, posting in relevant Facebook groups and/or teaming up with an influencer to promote your product to their audience are all great ways to win new customers. And using a landing page tool designed for Amazon promotions is an essential component of any external-traffic campaign- to collect contact info and keep your conversion rate on Amazon high (which helps your rankings).

Discounts of 50%+ will not Receive Verified Purchase tag

The Verified Purchase tag is an important marker that lends trust & legitimacy to a product reviews on Amazon. Amazon rewards a review the Verified Purchase tag when it can verify that the person leaving a review actually bought the product on Amazon.com. However, discounts of 50% and up disqualify a review from being verified. So if you using promotions to push discounted products and want to collect verified purchase reviews, keep the discounts at 49% and below.

Solicit Honesty

Another thing that you cannot do is ask for strictly positive reviews. This is considered as review manipulation by Amazon. While of course, you want to receive a boatload of 5-star reviews for your product, it’s against Amazon’s Terms to ask customers for positive reviews. When soliciting reviews, you should ask customers to be honest.

In fact, potential customers searching on Amazon.com would rather read honest reviews that do not seem biased. And you can also use any negative comments as information to improve your products going forward.  

In Summary

So that’s it. You can’t make discounts dependent on reviews. But you can sell discounted products and later ask for reviews. Just keep the discounts under 50% and seek honest feedback from customers.

Want to learn more about how to get more Amazon reviews. Read this free guide on Amazon reviews here.

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