The internet’s been buzzing with talk of Amazon’s policy changes (seen here). As of yesterday, 10/3/16, Amazon no longer allows its users to receive free or discounted products, in exchange for a review. The only exception to this new change, is if the users are part of their in-house review program (Amazon Vine), or if the product is a book. Click here to read their blog post.
This is incredibly problematic for sellers who have been focusing solely on Amazon as a means of generating income (as well as reviews). Sellers who are new to Amazon, as well as long-time sellers who release new products, have relied on product reviews to help generate “buzz” as well as recognition. Not to fret, we have solutions!
Amazon’s Policy Changes: Where do we go from here?
We’ve spent the last couple of days, doing another overhaul of our system. In order to protect all of our users, it’s imperative that we closely monitor (and comply with) Amazon’s policy changes – as well as the policies of other platforms that you may choose to use. We held a company meeting and came up with a solution that we think will please everyone. Since Amazon no longer allows their vendors to require reviews in exchange for free or discounted products, we need to focus on other aspects of your business. The changes are as follows (effective immediately):
Reviews are now optional for our “reviewers” – hereby referred to as “Buyers Club Members”.
Buyers Club Members who choose to provide a review are absolutely allowed to do so, but it cannot be required. So, we opened the ability to buy Slots (another form of virtual currency) for those who choose not to review the items they receive. Those who do choose to provide a review, are eligible for a refund of the Slot(s) they used to claim the coupon codes for your products. While the amount of reviews that come in will be fewer than we’re all used to (no review site can legally mandate reviews anymore), it’s a way to encourage users to continue writing them, without obligating them to do so. There’s also a 3rd option for our Buyers Club members to acquire Slots, through our referral program. They’ll earn 1 Slot for every 10 friends they refer. In order to claim a coupon code, they need 100 DealTickets and 1 Slot. As you can see, there are several options for our Buyers Club members to choose from.
We no longer require that all products be $0.00 after coupon code. You can now offer products at a discount, as long as the discount is at least 75% off of the regular price. You can still provide coupon codes that make the products free, but the choice to do so is now yours. With this change, it is imperative that the first line of your product description (when creating or editing a campaign in our system) be exactly as follows: Price after coupon code is $0.00. Of course, you would change the “$0.00” to whatever the final cost is, after the Buyers Club members apply their code. Again, it must be at least 75% off of the regular price. This is a GREAT way to unload products that are overstocked or discontinued, while putting a little money back in your pocket. It’s also a great way to boost your online sales ranking (OSR) – especially when it comes to new product launches. This increases visibility within Amazon’s system by boosting your product(s) placement within search results. This is now the main focus. Any reviews that come in are icing on the cake.
We understand that Amazon’s policy changes, as well as the changes within our system, have come without warning. Unfortunately, this threw all of us through a loop. It was certainly a shock but we see this as a blessing in disguise. We’ve received numerous emails over the last year, from Sellers who wanted us to reconsider our policy, requiring all products be free ($0.00) after coupon code. Request granted! As always, you can continue to run as many campaigns as you’d like, with as many coupon codes as you’d like.
If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us. We’re always happy to help in any way that we can.