Amazon is one of the most decorated companies in the world. It has been ranked #4 in Forbes’ annual list of the World’s Most Valuable Brands in 2020 with a brand value of $135.4 billion. Based on a survey conducted by Similar Web, Amazon grabbed first place in top websites ranking for e-commerce and shopping worldwide in 2020. In other words, the largest online marketplace in the world only strives and aims for excellence and perfection. Hence, there is no room for error when you are selling on Amazon, as it will cost you not only thousands of dollars, but your account might get suspended as well. Here are the five common Amazon listing mistakes that you must avoid.

Mistake #1: Getting customers off of their platform and leading them to your website.

There is nothing wrong with advertising and selling your products outside the Amazon marketplace. But if you snatched their customers right under their nose, then Amazon will be out there to get you.

You cannot use HTML, JavaScript, website URLs, or other types of code in your product listings. It is also prohibited to put links that lead to other websites for placing orders. Besides URLs, you must avoid including your name (Seller’s name), email address, and company-specific information on your listing. Your product detail page must be about the product alone, no more, no less.

How to fix it

If you have been practicing this one, you must remove all the links on your product listings immediately before Amazon sniffs it out. Perform an Amazon product listing optimization to identify which listings violate this rule.

Alternatively, you can still promote your products on your website and put a link that will direct website visitors to your Amazon listings. It is like hitting two birds with one stone. Aside from generating sales, this strategy can also help your listing rank higher on Amazon.

Likewise, you can do this when you create adverts on your brand’s social media accounts. Provide an Amazon product link on the post to start generating leads. 

Mistake #2: Breaking the rules in writing Amazon product titles.

Product titles are the first things that customers see when they are browsing on Amazon. This is why some sellers do anything to create a clickable title that will make buyers visit their listing, to the point that sellers will use only capital letters and special symbols to make it eye-catchy. However, this is against Amazon’s product title guidelines, making it one the top Amazon listing mistakes.

Other than that, don’t capitalize conjunctions, articles, and prepositions. Don’t mention the quantity and price of the product.

Don’t include promotional messages like “free shipping,” “sale,” “hot item,” “bestseller,” “50% off,” or any similar terms. Remember that you only have a maximum of 200 characters, so use that limit wisely and don’t forget to insert relevant keywords.

How to fix it

This kind of mistake is easy to fix with  proper Amazon title optimization. All you have to do is follow the guidelines, and you are all good. Moreover, ensure that you capitalize the first letter of each word, except for those that we’ve mentioned above. Use numerals. For example, use 8 instead of “eight.”  If it is a bundled product, mention the number of items per bundle, like “pack of 7.” For private label sellers, the seller’s name can be used as the Brand or Manufacturer. 

Mistake #3: Adding promotional texts on product images.

It might be a brilliant advertising strategy, but, unfortunately, Amazon doesn’t allow this. Some sellers are tempted to do it, because why not? Potential buyers are first drawn to images — specifically,, the main image — aside from the product title.

Aside from promotional phrases,  Amazon logos or trademarks are also not allowed in the images, since it might confuse customers and they may assume that Amazon itself is selling the product. Also, avoid including any badges such as “Premium Choice,” Amazon Alexa,” Amazon’s Choice,” “Top Seller,” or “Best Seller.” 

How to fix it

Avoid doing what we’ve mentioned above to stay on Amazon’s good graces. Also, make sure that the images correctly represent the product. Make sure to show only the product you are selling on the listing.

The main image should have a pure white background (RGB 255, 255, 255). Besides, the product must occupy at least 85% of the image frame. Avoid using blurry or pixelated images. Highlight the product’s primary features by keeping the image at 1,600 pixels to enable the zoom function.

Take note that each category may have specific image style guides, so better read those carefully to conform with Amazon’s rules. Do a quick Amazon listing optimization to check if all your images comply with the guidelines.

Mistake #4: Poor customer service and soliciting reviews.

Poor customer service is taboo in the marketplace and another big Amazon listing mistake. It is like you are committing a cardinal sin in the Earth’s most customer-centric company. If you encounter irate customers, don’t you ever dare argue or rationalize with them. This type of approach may do you more harm than good. It might create a dent in your seller performance metrics and lower your conversions.

Another bad practice is asking family and friends for reviews. Amazon clearly states that this is forbidden, and it may get your account suspended.

Nope, we are not paranoid here because Amazon can trace the wrongdoers using its advanced technology and customer’s information. If you have read the Amazon.com Privacy Notice, they’ve mentioned the types of personal information they collect from their customers. Examples are IP addresses, email addresses, Wi-Fi credentials, and even the email addresses of their friends and other people. 

How to fix it

When appeasing words don’t work, try offering refunds or returns. For damaged items, send a new one for free. Customers want their voices to be heard and acknowledged, so do everything to resolve their issues amicably and professionally.

However, you may sometimes tend to be biased when it comes to the product you are offering. You won’t hesitate to fight back when a customer spews negative reviews against it.

We suggest looking for a company that offers an Amazon listing optimization service and has a specialty in customer review management. This way, customer reviews will be handled objectively and the comments will not be driven by emotions.

On the other hand, you can get legitimate reviews through Amazon’s feedback system in your Seller Central dashboard. Keep in mind to follow the guidelines and don’t deliberately request for a “5-star review.” Instead, use phrases like “We value your opinion so we can improve our product.”

Based on the Trustpilot survey, nine out of ten consumers worldwide read reviews before making a purchase. Therefore, please don’t neglect your customers and make it a habit to foster healthy communication to avoid making this Amazon listing mistake. 

Mistake #5: Poorly managed inventory.

At first, it may not seem related to product listings, but Amazon’s A9 algorithm says otherwise. In case you don’t have an idea what the A9 algorithm is, Search Engine Land defines it as “the system responsible for ranking product results on Amazon.” This is why Amazon product listing optimization exists to keep up with the ever-changing A9 algorithm.

One of the things A9 checks out is your inventory level. Come to think of it: if your product runs out of stock, it means nobody can purchase it. Hence, it doesn’t only lower sales, but it could also affect your rankings. 

The worst-case scenario is that Amazon will take down your product listing for a while until you replenish your inventory. Yup, this is the domino effect of an out-of-stock item. According to Forbes, it might be challenging to bounce back from your original ranking even after you stock up.

How about overstocking? It might be a good idea at first, but not in the long run. Why? In the same Forbes article, it states there that Amazon might charge you long-term storage (LTS) fees for having too much inventory, and these fees could get higher during peak seasons. Moreover, every year, Amazon increases their LTS pricing matrix. So, double ouch to your sales.

How to fix it

Since this is one of the most overlooked indicators when selling on Amazon, it might help you to hire a company that offers Amazon listing optimization and can also manage inventory well. 

You may also use an integration software to help you monitor your stock personally. In that way, you can maintain your organic and paid rankings.

Conclusion

Amazon listing mistakes don’t only damage your reputation in the marketplace, but it can also cost your selling privileges to be revoked, or you can be kicked out of Amazon permanently. The largest online shopping website in the world will never get tired of punishing the bad actors, even if it means suspending some of its sellers. So bear in mind Amazon’s golden rule to avoid the mistakes above: Always put your customers first.