You go above and beyond to ensure customer satisfaction.

Customer complaints? No worries – you can usually keep even the most difficult buyer happy. Shipping mix-ups? No problem – you know how to make it right. As a seller, you’ve experienced a lot of situations, each one slightly different from the other.

Despite your knack for delivering unbelievable experiences, negative Amazon feedback does occasionally happen. And without a preplanned removal process in place, bad ratings can quickly add up.

So what can you do to plan for the inevitable negative feedback?

In this post, we’ll share a few tips for developing an Amazon feedback removal plan (that hopefully you’ll rarely have to use).

Step into the Buyer’s Shoes

Negative feedback can be maddening to try and figure out. Why didn’t your buyer just complain directly to you via email instead of turning to the most public forum imaginable? What, if anything, can be deciphered from the customer’s cryptic feedback comment? Assuming everything went as planned from your perspective (on-time shipping in particular), what could have possibly triggered such a poor rating? Perhaps the customer was just having a bad day?

Despite your best speculation, you’ll probably never know for sure – unless you ask. But is following up with a highly dissatisfied customer worth the effort? Some seller forum threads assert it’s better to turn the page and chalk up negative ratings to experience. On the other hand, this Amazon help page clearly recommends the opposite: “We strongly suggest that you work with buyers to resolve negative feedback.” What’s the right approach?

While there’s no perfect answer, many of our customers prefer to take a proactive approach to negative feedback. From the customer’s standpoint, a merchant who is willing to acknowledge a bad situation sets himself apart from the vast majority. From the seller’s standpoint, engaging an unsatisfied buyer can provide invaluable insight (not to mention increasing the likelihood of removal later on).

Before you reach out, however, it might also be wise to check if the rating qualifies for removal by Amazon.com, Inc. (“Amazon”). If the feedback uses profanity, reveals your personal information, is actually a product review or fits other specific criteria, Amazon will step into the situation. Customers who take such extreme action are unlikely to respond to your follow-up emails anyway.

Map Out a Logical Recourse

For top-performing sellers, negative feedback happens so infrequently that developing an action plan may seem superfluous. In fact, Amazon claims that “Our very best sellers have a close to 0% Negative Feedback Rate.”

At first glance, this statistic can be a bit misleading. Does a 0% negative feedback rate indicate that a merchant’s customers are never dissatisfied? Or, does it mean that the seller is very effective at resolving negative feedback within the 60-day allotted removal window? Having helped thousands and thousands of Amazon sellers manage their reputations since 2007, we believe the latter is probably more likely. This can only be achieved with a rock-solid plan for dealing with negative feedback.

Spend time mapping out your business workflow (both current and proposed) for dealing with negative feedback. Grab a whiteboard or open your diagram software and get your team working on answering these questions:

  • How much time typically passes before we notice a negative rating?
  • Do we have a process for comparing feedback violations based on Amazon’s community guidelines?
  • If there is a violation, how do we track cases opened with Amazon?
  • If there is no violation, what is our follow-up process with the customer?
  • Do we have any pre-written email templates for each situation and interaction?
  • Once the customer’s concerns are resolved, who is responsible for following up?
  • What should we do if the customer never responds?

Share these questions with your team and build a simple game plan. You’ll need it for the next step.

Automate with Technology

FeedbackFive is perhaps best known for helping merchants solicit a whopping 45 million positive feedbacks. Sellers are usually delighted to learn that our tool is also useful for implementing a feedback removal workflow.

For starters, FeedbackFive alerts you when a negative rating has been received. No more waiting around until the next time you’re logged in to the Seller Central dashboard. Receive an email and/or SMS text message soon after the customer leaves feedback.

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If the customer’s feedback qualifies for removal by Amazon, you can track your case notes and action plans from our intuitive dashboard. Since all of your orders are regularly synchronized via the Amazon MWS API, you can rest easy knowing that FeedbackFive has up-to-the-minute order and feedback information.

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For orders that require buyer engagement, FeedbackFive has your back, too. Upon resolving the customer’s issue, you can use our tool to easily request Amazon feedback removal. The default template can be personalized for each individual situation.

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Streamline Your Amazon Feedback Removal Workflow

If you’ve made the decision to streamline your Amazon feedback removal workflow in 2017, consider trying FeedbackFive. Sign up for a risk-free, 14-day trial of FeedbackFive, import your previous 90 days worth of feedback and get busy building a better removal process.

Colleen Quattlebaum

As the Business Development Manager for eComEngine, Colleen Quattlebaum is committed to helping Amazon Sellers succeed. Colleen reviews the latest market trends and strategizes on how to improve eComEngine’s offerings, so she can pass that insight and value on to Amazon merchants.