Reviews are one of the most important metrics for businesses selling on Amazon.
While reviews are vital for any online business, they are 10x as important (and 10x harder to get) on Amazon.
On Amazon, reviews have a direct impact on conversion rate, rankings, sales, and more. Which means your ability to generate reviews will make the difference between your product’s success or failure.
As such, one question – how to get reviews on Amazon – is the most important to answer for anyone looking to launch and rank a product.
There are many ways to go about getting reviews. The types of methods you can use include:
- Legitimate methods (officially endorsed or allowed by Amazon)
- Grey areas (not officially against TOS, but not officially encouraged either)
- Black-hat or illegal methods (paying for reviews, writing fake reviews, asking friends & family to write reviews)
In our opinion, it is not worth using black-hat or illegal tactics. While it might seem like the best way to get a lot of reviews fast, these methods almost always get you banned.
Amazon takes the issue of manipulating and incentivizing reviews seriously, so don’t expect them to go light on you if you are caught.
There are more ways to ask for reviews in 2021, which don’t put you at risk of suspension. That’s what we’ll share with you today, with these safe ways to get more Amazon reviews.
Why Do Reviews Matter?
Why are reviews important in the first place?
If you’re not a believer, let this graphic convince you. The data shown here is a testament to the power and importance of online product reviews – not even touching on factors specific to Amazon product reviews.
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What’s a Good Sales to Review Rate?
The average ratio of 1-2% may seem low. I’ve heard a lot of sellers complaining that they struggle to get reviews, when in reality they are at or above the average.
You should be able to generate a little higher than the average review rate. Consider that most Amazon sellers don’t have a smart way of getting reviews.
With an effective strategy, you can easily get a sales to review ratio of 5% – averaging approximately 20 sales per review on Amazon.
Be aware, anything that looks unnatural to Amazon may get you in trouble (even if you haven’t broken any rules).
A review rate significantly above average, or a quick spike in reviews, can trigger Amazon to block future reviews for your product, or worse – delete past reviews you worked hard to get.
That’s why it’s important to think long-term with reviews, and not try to get a lot of reviews all at once.
How to Get Reviews on Amazon: 11 Pro Tips
Here are 11 proven and safe methods to get reviews from your Amazon customers. These are all legitimate methods, which do not go against TOS, and which you can be confident will lead to reviews that don’t get removed.
1: Sell an Awesome Product
The most important thing, if you want to get more reviews, is your product.
All the outreach strategies in the world won’t make a difference if your product is boring and unreviewable.
Additionally, if you product is unremarkable or low-quality, any reviews you do get are unlikely to be five-star reviews.
You need to put the work in to create and sell a product that people naturally want to review. This will make it so much easier to get results when you ask for reviews. You’ll also get more organic verified reviews, without asking.
Before you launch your product, search competitors’ reviews and look for common complaints or negative issues. Fix these complaints with your product, and you’ll see a lot of positive reviews from customers who were looking for a solution you have now provided.
Combine this with high-quality and engaging product photos to create a positive feeling for your customers well before it’s time to ask for a review, which will greatly increase your chances of success.
2: Use Product Inserts
Product inserts are one of the easiest things you can do to get more reviews on Amazon. The best thing about product inserts is that you can reach every single customer with a request for a review.
A product insert is a little card put in your product packaging. On the card, you write a small “thank you” message, and kindly ask if the customer will leave a review.
You might want to include a QR code on your product insert with a link to the product review page, or to a landing page (that then goes on to ask for a review).
Take care to have something nice designed. A product insert that looks, and feels nice works better than a flimsy piece of paper.
A simple insert is fine (in fact, the bare minimum is often better). “Thanks for buying our product! We’d love it if you took some time to give us feedback and share your experience on Amazon. [instructions to leave a review]”
Depending on the type of product, you could also include instructions on how to use it, or suggested uses, on one side of the insert.
Helping your customer get more value out of the product will increase your chances of getting a review (and a positive one).
Be careful to follow Amazon’s rules in regards to product inserts. While it’s unlikely Amazon will open your package and check your insert, your competitors might buy your product and report you if you’re doing anything against the rules.
- Don’t specifically ask for 5-star reviews or positive reviews
- Don’t tell customers for a review only if they’re happy
- Don’t offer an incentive for a review (such as an Amazon gift card or cash back, for example)
3: Follow Up in Email
The one online marketing channel that’s stood the test of time is email.
Emails are cheap to send, take minimal effort to set up and automate, making them a great way to communicate with your customers.
For the same reason, they’re an effective way to ask for reviews. A well-written follow-up email, sent out after someone buys your product, is sure to generate a steady increase in reviews. The only difficult part is getting your customer’s email address.
Amazon doesn’t give you access to customer emails. So the only way to contact a customer via email is to get their email before they get to Amazon
After they click through to your Amazon product, send them an email to say “thank you” and ask for a review.
Another way to do this is linking to a landing page on your product insert (see the previous section), where you offer the customer a discount on a future purchase if they opt-in with their email (you could also make this an offer for an extended warranty, or educational content like an e-book).
Once they opt in, you can email them and ask for a review on the initial purchase.
*If you want to capture emails to get reviews, be careful not to offer too big a discount. Discounts of more than 30-50% make the purchase ineligible for verified reviews, while extremely high discounts may not be able to leave one at all.
4: Follow Up in Messenger or ManyChat
Facebook Messenger is a powerful communication and marketing channel, when used right, making it a good way to ask for reviews.
Compared to email, Messenger is a more personal form of communication, with higher average open rates and engagement rates.
That means a higher percentage of people see your messages, and act on them.
You’ll need to use the same methods as with email to be able to contact people through Messenger in the first place. A Facebook Ads funnel is a good way, as is a Messenger link on your product insert.
Once a customer engages with you in Messenger, you can get back to them manually to ask for a review, or set up an automated sequence of messages with ManyChat.
The issue with Messenger is that Facebook controls the platform, and has become increasingly strict with what you can message users, and when. Currently, you can only message users within 24 hours of their last message to you, which makes it a little more difficult to ask for reviews.
You may want to experiment with other messaging channels, such as WhatsApp or SMS. You can effectively use these channels the same way as you would with Messenger – just put in an incentive for the customer to give you their contact details, and take it from there.
5: Facebook Retargeting
Facebook Ads can be a way to directly ask for product reviews.
If you have a list of previous buyers, and enough information to create a custom audience on Facebook, you can run ads asking for people to leave a product review.
It may end up being a little expensive, so this method is best if you really need reviews to compete in a competitive category.
The wording in your ad should be thanking your customer for buying, asking if everything is ok with the product, and then asking the customer to leave a review on Amazon.
Bonus points if you create a short video for this, which will make your ad more personal, and likely get more results.
You’ll need some way to target past customers on Facebook to do this.
In your order reports, you’ll be able to download some info from your past customers*, which you can upload as a custom audience to Facebook. You can then create a Facebook Ad that asks for a review (even better if it’s a video!)
Otherwise, if you run ads to your Amazon listing on Facebook or Google, you can retarget people who clicked through to the listing with ads.
Technically, this may be against Amazon’s terms of service, because you’re contacting Amazon buyers outside of Amazon. That puts it in the grey area between white-hat and black-hat. However, it’s unlikely that Amazon would notice or take action on anything like this, so we consider it fairly safe.
*Since late 2019 some sellers have been reporting that they can’t access information like buyers’ name and address anymore, so it’s possible in the near future that all sellers will have customer information further restricted.
6: Follow Up on Amazon
You can use Buyer-Seller Messaging on Amazon to automatically ask each person who buys from you for a review, and/or seller feedback.
Using a software tool, you’ve got the ability to send uber-personalized review requests, as well as other communications (such as shipping updates and thank you messages) that contribute to positive reviews.
If you do this, make sure you know what Amazon allows in Buyer-Seller messages. Make sure you only ask for a review once, and don’t do any things that violate terms (like putting [IMPORTANT] in the subject line, or including marketing material of any kind).
Breaking the rules is a sure way to lose your messaging privileges, and may also result in the loss of reviews.
7: Use the “Request a Review” Button
While Amazon Buyer-Seller Messaging is less effective than it was a few years ago, there is a new way to reach out customers within Amazon’s system.
When you view your orders in Seller Central, you’ll see a button that says “Request a Review”. Clicking this button will trigger a standardized email, sent by Amazon, asking the customer to rate/review your product.
You won’t be able to personalize this email at all. The text is the same in every email, except for the product details and seller name.
The best part about this is that the customer doesn’t actually need to write a review. They can simply click the stars in the email to give a rating from 1-5 stars. This leads to a lot more ratings, since customers don’t have to actually go through the effort of writing something.
There’s little reason not to use this feature for every sale, as it’s 100% within Amazon’s terms, and is probably the easiest way for someone to rate your product.
8: Check Your Seller Feedback
A lot of customers give feedback about products in the Seller Feedback section of your seller profile. You can ask these customers to leave their feedback on the product listing as well.
You’ll want to check your Seller Feedback regularly to look for any cases like this. It’s important to reach out soon after the customer leaves feedback, so the experience is fresh in their mind.
If you find anything that fits as a product review, reach out to the customer, thank them, and kindly ask if they can write the same thing as an Amazon product review.
Obviously, you only want to do this for positive feedback and reviews.
(If you find a negative review in your seller feedback, reach out to Amazon and have it deleted. They’ll be pretty quick to delete anything that’s meant to be a product review).
9: Enroll in the Amazon Early Reviewer Program
The Amazon Early Reviewer program is a service set up by Amazon to help new products get their first reviews.
How it works: if you have Brand Registry, you can enroll products that don’t have any reviews yet, for $60 per product.
Amazon will contact buyers of your product and ask them to leave feedback, with an incentive of a small Amazon gift card (worth a few dollars) if they write a review.
Any reviews you get through this program will have a small badge saying “Early Reviewer Rewards”.
Amazon will keep looking for reviewers for up to 12 months, or until your product gets 5 reviews from the program (whichever comes first).
Keep in mind that you can’t influence whether it’s a good or bad review. You could get 5 reviews through the program, and all of them bad. So be sure you have a good product (see point #1) before you enroll in this program.
10: Use The Amazon Vine Program
Along with Early Reviewers, Amazon offers the Vine Program to help connect sellers with reviewers. Vine is open to Brand Registered sellers and Vendors.
How Vine works: you provide 30 units of your product, and a selection of top reviewers (known as “Vine Voices”) will be offered these products for free to test and review.
To enroll an Amazon product in the Vine Program, the product must have fewer than 30 reviews. You’ll also need enough inventory on hand to provide to reviewers.
Like Early Reviewer reviews, those you get from Vine will have a badge to identify them. Also, expect honest reviews, so identify and fix any issues with your product first.
11: Build Relationships With Your Customers
The best way to consistently get positive reviews is to build relationships with your customers, and create a brand persona that resonates with your target audience.
This is not a quick, push-button way to get reviews. That’s why it’s the best method – because it’s not easy for your competitors to copy.
If you build a brand that your customers love, they’ll reciprocate the love by helping you out. Your loyal fans will write reviews on their own accord. Even better, they’ll be quality reviews that help you get a higher conversion rate.
Some things you can do to start building relationships include:
- Being active on social media
- Consistently emailing your audience
- Providing value to your audience
- Delivering a great customer experience
- Crafting a likable brand persona
An important part is delivering value to your audience. Too many people build a list or social media audience, and only contact their list to ask for something or try and sell something.
That’s not an effective way to get people to respond to you (which includes asking for reviews).
Get your customers to love your brand, and I promise, you’ll get reviews on autopilot.
The Best Way to Ask for Amazon Reviews
There is no single method that’s going to get you a flood of reviews overnight.
If any service or tool promises this, it’s more than likely against TOS, or a lie.
The best way get more reviews on Amazon is, first, to sell a high-quality and memorable product.
On top of this, add a system with a few ways to ask customers for reviews:
- Include a product insert with a request for a review
- Use the request a review button
- Follow up with Messenger or email
For new products, Amazon-sanctioned programs like Early Reviewers and Vine are a good way to get your first few reviews.
Do all this, and you’ll get more reviews than the average seller. Remember, even a one percent increase on the average review rate puts you ahead.
Amazon Reviews: Do’s and Don’ts
Here are some extra tips on what you should or shouldn’t do to get more reviews (especially if you want positive reviews).
Focus on making customers happy. Product reviews are all about the happiness of your customers. With every step of your customer’s journey, from buying the product, to receiving it and opening it, to your request for a review, do it with customer satisfaction in mind.
Be consistent. Getting reviews is all about consistency. You’re not going to get a response 100% of the time you ask for a review. But since the average seller only gets 1-2 reviews per 100 sales, you only need to succeed a few times to be above average.
Write accurate product descriptions. A lot of negative reviews and unhappy customers come when a product is not as they expected. Set expectations and avoid bad reviews by writing detailed, accurate descriptions of your product.
Fix problems in negative reviews. Keep getting negative reviews about the same thing? There’s probably something wrong with your product that can be fixed. Listen to your customers, and fix any common problems that come up.
Buy reviews. Any service that says they can get reviews for you should not be trusted. Amazon eventually picks up on people getting paid for fake reviews, and will wipe any reviews made by the buyer.
Incentivize reviews. Same thing. Incentivizing reviews (free products for reviews, explicitly offering a discount or rebate in exchange for a review) will get a zero-tolerance response from Amazon, even if they’re not fake reviews. If you do this in 2021, you’re asking to get banned.
Ask people to change their reviews. New updates to Amazon’s terms of service explicitly state you can’t ask someone to change a review. You can, and should, reach out to people with negative reviews and try to make it right. But don’t ask them to change it. If they decide to, that’s up to them.
Get family or friends to leave reviews. Amazon is very good at catching on to reviews made by family, friends, or anyone connected to you. Don’t risk this, as it will get your account or listing banned FAST.
Go overboard with review requests. Ask once or twice (and only once per channel). That’s it. If you keep asking customers again and again, they’ll get fed up and write a negative review.
Learn more about highly effective tactics to get more Amazon reviews, as well as how to comply with TOS, what makes a good review request email or product insert, and what to do if your reviews get deleted, in our free e-book: The Ultimate Guide to Amazon Reviews.
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Amazon Product Reviews FAQ
Can you ask for reviews on Amazon?
Yes, you can still ask for reviews. Amazon’s new terms state you can only send one request for a review through Buyer-Seller Messaging. So limit your requests.
Can people review an Amazon product without purchasing on Amazon?
Yes. If someone purchased your Amazon product somewhere else (another marketplace, your own site), they can review it on Amazon. However, the review will be unverified, and too many unverified reviews may look suspicious to Amazon.
How long do Amazon product reviews take to post?
Usually within 72 hours. In some cases it can be sooner, in some a little longer (up to 4-5 days).
Why can’t my customer leave a review?
If customers report they can’t review your product, it’s possible your listing has a temporary or permanent review block. If it’s a new buyer account, they may also not meet the necessary requirements for writing product reviews yet.
Find more answers to frequently asked questions, straight from Amazon, here.
How to Get Amazon Reviews in 2021 – In Summary
Reviews for Amazon products are so important. They help you get more conversions, as well as making your product rank higher and attract more clicks in Amazon search.
In the old days, getting reviews on Amazon was easy. Sign up for a review service, give away some free products, and watch the reviews come in.
With each new year it’s getting harder. The best strategy for 2021 is to have multiple touch points, a strong product, and nothing that breaks Amazon’s product review guidelines.
Even better, if you combine a great product, awesome customer experience and likable brand persona, you’ll get Amazon reviews without even trying.
Want to go over these powerful Amazon review-generating tactics again? Watch this video: