3 simple offline strategies to improve Amazon seller feedback
Online merchants have a problem: less than 5 percent of buyers leave Amazon seller feedback after a purchase.
More often than not, it has nothing to do with the quality of customer service received, the condition of the goods they bought or the delivery. The honest truth is that they simply don't feel strongly enough about the vendors to leave feedback.
If you’re an Amazon reseller, competing for the Buy Box, that’s a big issue.
Why is your Amazon feedback score so important?
It’s been said the Buy Box is responsible for 82 percent of all Amazon sales. The sellers who get that coveted spot are chosen by an algorithm programmed to pick those it believes will offer the best shopping experience—and seller feedback plays a big part in that.
As an Amazon seller, a feedback score above 97 percent is essential when competing for the Buy Box, while a poor rating will significantly hurt your chances.
The best way to promote positive feedback—and encourage more of it—is to establish a personal connection with your buyers. According to the Harvard Business Review, the power of engaging with your customers on an emotional level cannot be underestimated:
- Emotionally connected customers are worth 52 percent more than those who are "highly satisfied."
- A sense of community and self-discovery are two of the biggest drivers of emotion among millennials.
- Customers with an emotional attachment spend up to 200 percent more than others, with a far greater lifetime value.
Here are three ideas that could help you connect with your customers on an emotional level offline so they will ultimately leave feedback that will boost your Amazon seller rating.
#1. Make your packages stand out
Packaging is one area where you have an opportunity to trump your online rivals.
Put yourself in the customer’s shoes: honestly, how would you feel opening one of your own packages? If it wouldn’t inspire you to go online and leave stellar feedback then it’s unreasonable to expect a different response from your customer.
Reimagining your packaging doesn’t need to be expensive. You might decide simply to arrange the goods in a more interesting way or place individual items on a bed of fabric that makes them stand out and improves the overall aesthetic. There are plenty of great examples online to inspire you.
If you can create that elusive “wow” moment during the unboxing, then you’ve just taken a massive step toward a more enthusiastic feedback rating. Taking the time to sit down with your team and brainstorm a couple of packaging ideas could have real benefits down the line.
Another factor to take into account is whether your choice of packaging material echoes your company's core values. Would an eco-friendly delivery box be well-received by your customers? Could your packaging be re-purposed instead of thrown away?
If you can turn the unboxing into an enjoyable experience with added value then you also open yourself up to new marketing opportunities. Just search for "unboxing" on Youtube and you'll find countless channels devoted to the best and worst experiences. On occasion, these videos can even go viral.
#2. Create a real-world experience to engage with your customers
Your sales may come entirely from online channels but that doesn't mean you can't introduce an offline element to your customer engagement strategy.
Pop-up shops have become somewhat ubiquitous in recent years. At face-value, they present online retailers with another revenue stream, albeit on a short-term basis, but can also boost brand awareness.
They also offer an opportunity to put a human face to your company and for shoppers to learn about your products firsthand. If you have some room in the budget then there are limitless possibilities for the type of experiences you can create. Shopify has put together an excellent in-depth guide to the whole process, from concept to execution.
Don't feel that you have to focus solely on a retail venture either. Depending on what you sell, it may feel appropriate to offer your customers a service. Let's say you specialize in grooming products for men. A pop-up barbershop offering customers a free haircut or shave, with your pomade or skin-care range prominently displayed, could make more sense than a straightforward retail outlet.
Or it could be an event that has nothing at all to do with your core products. For example, when U.S. beauty brand Glossier launched in Ireland in May, it invited a limited number of its first Dublin-based customers to a secret dinner to say thanks. This wasn't a promotion; in fact, customers had no idea about the event until after they made a launch-day purchase.
While it might be unrealistic to invest so heavily in an event that targets so few of your customers, you can still apply the underlying philosophy of it. A larger event, with a much lower cost-per-head, could be just as impactful and still create a sense of exclusivity. You might target cities or regions where sales have been particularly strong, or focus on new markets entirely.
From a marketing point of view, events like these are also incredible opportunities to make a splash on social media, with people only too happy to share their experience with their followers and friends. Beyond that, when these experiences are executed in a genuine spirit of engagement they can have a lasting effect on your customers' loyalty.
#3. Ask for it
Most shoppers simply don't understand the realities of operating as an online seller and the unique challenges you face. This includes the Amazon seller feedback system.
Your buyers may not be aware of how vital that feedback is to your future sales. So let them know. Amazon is very upfront about its policy on the solicitation of feedback and actively encourages you to reach out to your customers.
There's software out there to help automate and optimize this process online, but why not reinforce those efforts offline as well? Of course, you can't pick up the phone and call the buyers, but you can leave a note inside the package thanking them for their custom and explaining how much a positive rating would mean to you and your business.
The immediacy of a written note, or at least a printed message with a handwritten signature, can be hugely impactful. Combined with a better unboxing experience, this could be a powerful one-two combination that inspires your customer to log on and boost your reputation.
Combining your offline efforts with online action
These strategies are best paired with a solid online plan geared toward harvesting more positive feedback. If you can impact your customers offline and make a personal connection, they are going to be more receptive when you reach out to them via email.
But remember, you can't please everyone. That’s why you should only request feedback on the right products, from the right customers, at the right time—and that's where eDesk comes in. Our automated feedback software helps increase your seller rating by sending smart, selective requests that improve your reputation and grow your sales.
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