Understanding Amazon seller feedback system

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Seller feedback on Amazon refers to a public rating of their overall seller performance. Often confused with reviews, which are product-centric, seller feedback is seller-centric.

Amazon will actively remove feedback that is solely about the product and not about the seller, is promotional, or includes personal information.

Feedback also allows merchants to monitor how they are performing when it comes to packaging, shipping, response time, customer service, and overall professionalism. Customers have 90 days from the date of their order to leave their seller feedback rating as well as any open-ended comments they want to accompany it.

Inside Amazon seller feedback system

Amazon’s rating system breaks down as such:

According to The Amazon Reputation Playbook by Feedvisor, feedback percentages are rounded to the nearest whole number, which is why totals will not always add up to exactly 100%. Amazon use the below calculation to identify sellers’ feedback score:

Feedback score = sum of positive feedback/sum of all feedback

As a general rule of thumb, Amazon typically does not remove buyer feedback even if it is unwarranted or the issue has been resolved.

    Amazon will only remove feedback in the following cases:

  1. The comments include obscenity or profanity.
  2. The comments include seller-specific, personally identifiable data, such as full names, email addresses, or phone numbers.
  3. The entire feedback comment is a product review and is more suitable for that use case, instead of a feedback comment.

It is also important to note that the seller feedback score does not transcend international marketplaces and rather resets with each one.

Why an Amazon seller feedback is important?

1. Feedback provides valuable insights into sellers’ overall business performance

Positive feedback confirms the areas in which seller’s team and store are excelling, and negative feedback sheds light on areas of the business that can be optimised to increase overall customer satisfaction.

In an Amazon ecosystem, that is, increasingly saturated by sellers with similar products, positive feedback can be used as a competitive advantage.

2. Feedback rating can impact the ability to win the Buy Box

Feedback count is the total number of buyers that have given the seller feedback. This metric is used to accurately weigh the feedback rating between sellers with a long history and a lot of feedback and newer sellers with a short history and less feedback.

It is also a key metric in and of itself — sellers with a high score are more likely to win the Buy Box over a seller with a low score if all other metrics are equal.

Negative feedback rate is also one of three metrics used to calculate your Order Defect Rate (ODR).

While this score only has a medium-level impact on the Buy Box algorithm, sellers with more than a 1% ODR in the Long Term, orders placed between one and four months ago, or Short Term, orders placed between one and two months ago, categories are significantly penalised. Ideally, this number should always be kept below 1% to have a serious chance of winning the Buy Box.

Amazon product reviews

3. If the sellers’ average feedback rating falls below Amazon’s standards, their account can be suspended or even closed down entirely, tarnishing their seller reputation.

4. The seller feedback as informative for customers’ purchase decision.

Although customers do have the opportunity to leave private messages for the seller via a “Contact Seller” form, which sellers should respond to within 24 hours, many will leave public feedback, which should also be addressed in a timely manner, particularly if it is negative.

One Response

  1. The amazon feedback is increasingly useless, even misleading. Time the regulators stepped in. Not only are unrelated products included below a product, but now the star rating has been doctored.

    Click the little “arrow down” by the rating and you get this:

    ‘Amazon calculates a product’s star ratings using a machine learned model instead of a raw data average. The machine learned model takes into account factors including: the age of a review, helpfulness votes by customers and whether the reviews are from verified purchases.’

    I’m confident that Amazon know *exactly* what they are doing. My guess is that they feel that a legitimate/fully functioning feedback system won’t benefit promotions/share price etc. Maybe they have sufficient market dominance and feel they can let some stuff go now.

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