To find success on Amazon, you must first start with a great product and then get it in front of as many shoppers as possible. Yes, there are many more steps in between, but maintaining your visibility on this competitive marketplace is crucial if you want to make a profit.
Amazon’s search bar is the main way buyers find products, so you want your items to be shown near the top of its search results. Amazon’s pay-per-click advertisements are also very good at getting clicks and contribute to some of the best conversion rates across all of eCommerce.
If you’re struggling with ranking or have high advertising costs, it could be the result of your product reviews. Let’s look deeper into the importance of Amazon reviews and the key role they play in both of these areas.
Amazon reviews provide social proof for shoppers
Product reviews have a huge impact on the buying decisions of Amazon shoppers. With so many similar items available for sale, the purchasing process can be overwhelming. Outside of obvious pricing and product differences, how are consumers
supposed to quickly distinguish between all the items in front of them? More often than not, they’re looking to product reviews for the answer.
Consumers rely on reviews for social proof that a product is worth purchasing. This real-life validation from their peers can make or break a sale, as items with high numbers of negative reviews are often not considered trustworthy
enough purchases. In fact, the average Amazon customer is willing to spend 31% more on a seller with good reviews.
Amazon makes it easy for shoppers to compare ratings, too. They appear at the top of every product page, on ads, and when your item is shown in Amazon’s search results.
Amazon reviews influence product ranking
The prominent positioning of product reviews also signals just how important they are to Amazon and how it ultimately ranks upwards of 350 million products.
While the exact details of how Amazon’s A10 search algorithm determines product rankings isn’t public knowledge, we do know that highly rated products with higher conversion rates are given better organic placement in search results.
But you need more than just a bunch of generic “this product is good” reviews. Amazon and your customers also take into account the recency and relevancy of your ratings.
If you want to prove to Amazon that you’re worthy of Page 1, that highly coveted real estate where 80% of sales come from, you must consistently receive a steady stream of helpful reviews from satisfied buyers. This is clearly easier
said than done, and recently launched products can take time to get reviews. But don’t lose hope — there are things you can do to help, and we’ll cover a few of them later.
Customer reviews boost ad traffic and conversion rates
While paid ads won’t directly affect your organic ranking, their prime placement on Amazon’s search pages helps to make your product more visible to shoppers. And as we previously discussed, boosting your visibility is a huge momentum
builder for sales.
Amazon Sponsored Brand and Sponsored Product ads appear at the top of search result pages.
But paying for increasingly costly ad placements doesn’t make much sense when your products and their detail pages aren’t set up to convert.
That’s why it’s highly recommended that you examine your product’s retail readiness before launching any advertising campaigns.
Ask yourself these types of questions:
- Is my product listing, including any parent-child variations, set up correctly?
- Is my listing content optimized for keywords, and are my images engaging and informative for shoppers?
- Do I have enough inventory to cover at least 6 weeks of orders?
- Am I competitively priced within my category, or do I need to reconsider my strategy?
Since reviews so strongly influence conversion, they’re also a critical piece of the retail readiness puzzle. To be retail ready on Amazon, products should have at least 15 customer reviews and a star rating of 3.5 or higher. (Note
that you must also maintain this star rating to be eligible for certain ad placements.)
Bonus: 3 ways to improve your Amazon review strategy
Ratings and reviews are signals of customer trust and satisfaction that also influence search ranking and advertising placements. But all this begs the question — how do you get more reviews, and better ones at that? Here are three
top tips for improving your Amazon review strategy.
1) Send a Product Review Request
It may seem obvious to you, but some sellers are still unaware (or maybe unsure) of their ability to send product review requests. Per Amazon’s rules, you may send proactive permitted messages to customers in order to request seller
feedback and product reviews. You can do this a few different ways:
- Through Amazon’s Buyer-Seller messaging system
- Via the Amazon Request a Review button
- Using third-party software that works with Amazon’s Selling Partner API
The first two options require you to log into Seller Central and manually send out a message for every order. Not very efficient, right? That’s why so many sellers have turned to feedback and review automation tools like FeedbackFive
by eComEngine to streamline this incredibly repetitive — but important — task.
FeedbackFive sends out product review requests on your behalf to people who have purchased your products. Prebuilt campaign options, including Amazon’s Request a Review message and your own Buyer-Seller Messaging template, make it
easy to reach more buyers in less time.
Even better, you can set custom campaign rules to time your emails more precisely to when the customer is experiencing peak excitement about your product. This can be a great way to improve the helpfulness of your written reviews.
2) Monitor Your Reviews
When it comes to Amazon reviews, the hard work doesn’t stop once you get them. Reviews contain a wealth of buyer and product information that you can use to enhance everything from your advertising campaigns to your product pages to
your inventory lineup.
But individually monitoring your reviews isn’t always feasible, especially as you scale. Monitoring your reviews for common trends (i.e. product or packaging defects, issues with materials, and size or color discrepancies) and keywords
(“don’t like,” “disappointed with,” “missing,” etc.) can tell you how to improve your existing products and even identify new product or bundling opportunities.
Keeping track of all this information is time-consuming and complicated by the fact that Seller Central doesn’t communicate when new reviews are received (more on this in a moment).
Feedback Five also takes away the tedious task of tracking reviews and makes it easier to see ASIN-level trends. You can sort and filter review data within the tool for analysis or download a detailed review history to keep and share
Improving the quality of your product page and the reviews that go along with it can greatly impact your ad performance and, in turn, your sales.
Product reviews page in FeedbackFive.
3) Set Up Product Review Alerts
Occasional negative reviews are normal and expected. However, too many and whatever traction your ads and ranking have will be lost. Therefore, you should be paying close attention to these ratings and taking action whenever you can.
This can include:
Responding to customers: Brand registered sellers can use Amazon templates to offer a courtesy refund or replacement or to request more information following a negative customer review.
Editing your listing content or images: If your listing is misleading customers and causing them to leave negative ratings, you’re going to want to edit this information ASAP.
Talking with your supplier or manufacturer: When a product issue is widespread enough, it warrants a chat with your supplier or manufacturer to see what can be done.
Reporting any suspected fake reviews to Amazon: If you’ve identified reviews that you strongly believe to be fake, report them to Amazon right away.
Need more help?
We hope that you learned more about the widespread impact reviews have on your Amazon ranking and ad performance.
Ellen Sipp-Paris is the Content Manager at eComEngine. Her goal is to help educate Amazon sellers so they feel more confident in what can be a complicated marketplace. When she’s not writing, she enjoys taking nature walks, reading, and going to concerts.