Do you wish you could ge 1000s of legitimate reviews for your Amazon products?
How about if you could easily get a steady stream of 5-star reviews whenever you launch a new product?
Whether you’re launching your first product with no reviews, or you have an established product, one thing is for sure. Reviews are a huge pain point.
In this guide on how to get reviews on Amazon, we’re going to give you all the information you need to get more reviews, and get an edge over your competition. We’re going to cover:
- 7 white-hat ways to ask your customers for product reviews, [Go to Section]
- Tips on crafting review requests, [Go to Section]
- Essential steps to getting high-rated reviews, [Go to Section]
- What to do when you get a negative review, [Go to Section]
- Key points to note in Amazon’s review policies. [Go to Section]
No matter what level of seller you are, this guide is sure to contain content that will help you increase your products’ review count, review rating, and as a result, your sales.
Why are reviews so important?
Product reviews are a form of “social proof”, essential when selling something online.
Since the customer can’t see or feel the product for real, you need some way to verify it is what you say it is. Hence, you need previous buyers to provide “proof”.
Does it really make that much difference?
Studies say yes. This study shows 79% of consumers take online reviews as seriously as personal recommendations. In another study, 85% of participants state they check reviews “often or very often” before buying something online.
If you don’t have any reviews, or only one or two, it’s hard to have the same level of trust as a product with a lot of reviews. When a shopper compares your product with another, the reviews are more often than not what makes the difference.
How To Get Reviews on Amazon: How To Ask For Reviews
To be honest, most people don’t like writing reviews. This is why it is such a huge pain point for Amazon sellers. A normal review rate is around 1-2% (meaning you should get 1 or 2 reviews for every 100 sales).
The good news is that many sellers don’t have a smart strategy in place for following up and getting reviews. So if you’re able to increase your rate to around 3-5%, you’re going to be ahead of many of your competitors.
The first step is asking – don’t just sit back and hope people will leave reviews. It’s important to be proactive in seeking out reviewers, and there are many methods you can use.
Method 1: Product inserts
Product inserts are a great low-friction way to get reviews on Amazon. It can be a small card or sheet of paper put in with your packaging, that your customer sees when they open your product.
On the insert, include a design that shows off your branding, a thank you message, and a polite request for a review. It’s a small thing that can help you come off as more professional, and is likely to be seen by all your customers.
Product inserts and packaging are under-utilized by a lot of sellers. Putting some work into these can go a long way towards giving the customer a great unboxing experience (which we’ll touch on a little later).
[Learn more about creating effective Amazon Product Inserts here]
Method 2: Email autoresponders
Every sale you get is a potential review. That’s why it’s good practice to use an autoresponder software that follows up each sale. These tools integrate with Amazon’s buyer-seller messaging system, sending an automated message out based on a specific trigger.
It’s become commonplace to use autoresponders to send review requests. You write your email copy (or use the service’s default templates), and you’ve got a low-effort way to reach out to every single customer.
Prices and features vary greatly among all tools. However if you’re a new seller, something basic should suffice.
Method 3 : Collecting emails for review requests
Amazon autoresponders are not as effective as they once were. Customers have the ability to opt out of the messaging system, meaning your review request emails won’t get through. Plus, you are limited by what you can say in these emails, since they are sent within Amazon’s system.
Another reason autoresponders are not the best, is the impersonality. Any messages you send through this system come from an encoded email address (such as “email@example.com”). Messages from an address like this are easy for customers to ignore or disregard. They end up pushed away with all the other spam and promotional messages people get every day.
For a better solution, you may want to get in front of your customers in channels outside of Amazon, and collect real emails. With a list of actual customer emails, you’ll be able to send automated review requests that look and feel more organic.
A way to do this, while staying within Terms of Service, is to drive traffic from Facebook to a landing page to collect emails. Having collected an email, you can send review requests (using LandingCube’s email follow-up feature) from your own email.
These emails are more likely to be seen than those sent within Amazon, and are significantly more personal.
Method 4: Messenger sequences
Email sequences are a good low-cost option. However, low open rates and engagement rates are a bit of a problem.
Messenger offers a solution to this problem. While email has, on average, open rates around 21% and click-through rates of 3-4%, Messenger campaigns routinely see open rates in the 80%-90% range. In terms of engagement, some tests show click-through rates of 44%.
There’s a better chance your Messenger sequences are going to be seen, and thus, a better chance that people decide to leave a review. The issue then becomes reaching your Amazon customers with Messenger.
You won’t be able to add people to a Messenger sequence after they’ve bought from you on Amazon. So the best method is to run promo code campaigns with LandingCube’s Messenger chatbots. Then you can send a review request in a follow-up Messenger sequence.
Method 5: Facebook retargeting for Amazon reviews
Another alternative is using Facebook ads to target people who earlier bought from you, asking if they will post a review. Since you’re paying for ads, it will cost you more than email or Messenger campaigns, but it should have higher visibility (your emails/messages may not even be opened).
The way to do this is sending customers through a landing page, and collecting Facebook Pixel info. You then create a list of people who claimed a coupon and clicked through to Amazon, and create a lead-based custom audience on Facebook.
Alternatively, you can create a custom audience from the list of customers in your Amazon-Fulfilled Shipments report. But be warned, this is a grey area with Amazon’s Terms of Service, as you’re showing ads directly to Amazon customers.
When creating your Facebook ad, you want to keep the copy simple. Write something like:
“Hi, did you enjoy your [product]? If so, please leave us a review.
It really helps our small business gain traction. And it helps other customers make more informed purchase decisions.
Click to go to Amazon & leave a review.”
Include a picture of the product, with a big “Thank You”.
You may even want to make a short video that does the same thing – expresses your gratitude to the customer, reminds them of the product’s main benefits/value, and then asks (and explains how) to leave a review. Appeal to their nobler motives (“It really helps our small business gain traction”), but make sure you don’t offer any incentive to leave a review, as this will put you in violation of TOS.
Method 6: Early reviewer program
Sending review requests in a way that conforms with Amazon’s TOS can be a tricky subject. So why not use something from Amazon themselves to help?
The Early Reviewer Program is made specifically to help sellers get the first few reviews for their products. You can enroll products in this program that don’t have any reviews yet, and Amazon will reach out to customers, offering small incentives for people to leave (honest) reviews.
The program costs $60 per product, and goes on for 12 months, or until your product gets 5 reviews (whichever comes first). This works out to $12 per review, which is a very fair price to pay for your first reviews.
Reviews gained from this program will have a badge, similar to Verified Purchase reviews, that says “Early Reviewer Rewards”.
The Early Reviewer Program is obviously not a sustainable way to ask for reviews, as it shuts off after 5 reviews, but it’s a great way to get the first few reviews you need for your product to get traction.
Method 7: Check your seller feedback!
What if I told you that you had more product reviews than you think, but they’re just in the wrong place? It’s probably true.
Customers often make mistakes when trying to leave a review, and end up leaving it in the seller feedback area instead. [what is seller feedback? See here.]
You should regularly take a moment to look through your seller feedback and see if any positive comments left appear to be related to a product instead. If so, reach out to the customer, thank them for their kind comment, and politely ask whether they can add the comment as a review on the product listing.
It won’t work all the time, and if it doesn’t, don’t worry. But you may be missing out on some positive reviews by ignoring this.
How To Get Reviews on Amazon: Writing Review Request Emails
How you send review requests is one thing, how you write them is another. Since there’s nothing to gain for the customer from writing a review, it’s key that you get your wording right, or else you’re just going to get ignored.
Here are some tips on writing effective review request emails. Just be aware, you want to keep things brief. Take these tips into account, but don’t end up with an essay. You’re going to get ignored.
Be down to Earth, and connect with your customer
You’re asking the customer to do you a favor by leaving a review. So you may need to pull at their heartstrings a bit, and make them want to do that favor for you.
Your chances of getting a review are a lot higher if you make a connection with your customer. Do all you can to sound like a regular person, not a faceless business or a computer program. Know your audience, and know how to talk to them.
Something like this is often quite effective: “Reviews really help our small family business, and other customers could really benefit by learning from your experience.”
It can be changed depending on the audience, but this is a good place to start for a lot of Amazon sellers. It comes off as a wholesome, genuine request for the customer to do some good by leaving a review.
Along the same lines, you want to make the customer feel valued. This should always be a focal point of your business, since that business wouldn’t exist without your customers. But it’s even more crucial when you’re asking them to help you out.
A simple “thanks for your purchase” goes a long way.
This does not mean offering an incentive for the customer to leave a review. That is firmly against Amazon’s Terms.
Instead, you want to do all you can to ensure your customer is getting value out of your product. That will improve the chances of the customer leaving a review (and a positive one!).
Examples you can use are:
- Tips on how to maximize your product’s effectiveness. If you sell a food ingredient or kitchen appliance, include a list of recipes. If you sell exercise equipment, include a list of workouts.
- The most common misconceptions about your product, or the most common mistakes made by people who use your product. For instance, a brain health supplement won’t be as effective if you don’t eat healthy, get decent sleep and exercise regularly.
- Additional uses for your product.
Help your customer out. The more value customers get out of your product, the more likely they are to leave a positive review.
Example Review Request Template
Remember, all brands are different, and ideally you want to infuse your own brand personality in your review emails. However, this example email template should give you an idea of where to start:
//Subject line: How is your All-in-one Tool by Acme from Amazon?
Hey there! [change tone based on brand identity]
We at Acme hope you have enjoyed your All-in-one Tool!
Remember, this is the only tool that:
Does this [benefit]
Does that [benefit]
Without this and that [benefit]
Here are some awesome ways to use your All-in-one Tool:
It would mean the world to us if you could take 2 minutes and leave us a product review on Amazon. It really helps our small business, and other customers can really benefit by learning from your experience.
[Click here to leave an Amazon Review]
Thank you for doing business with us. We would not be able to provide these awesome tools if it wasn’t for our customers 🙂
Feel free to reach out to us for any reason. You can simply reply to this email or call us at ###-###-####.
All the best,
How To Get Reviews on Amazon: How To Get POSITIVE Reviews
It’s not just the number of reviews that’s important. You also want your customers leaving good reviews.
A listing with 1000 reviews and an average rating of 2 stars will perform far worse than one with 50 reviews and a 4.9 rating.
Here are some tips on making sure you get mostly positive reviews.
Sell a good product
It’s not exactly rocket science.
The best way to ensure people leave good reviews is to sell something people like. Do your homework when sourcing and checking samples, and don’t cheap out and put out flimsy or low-quality products.
A great idea when sourcing is to check out your competitors, and see what customers mention in their negative reviews. If there’s a common thread, you’ve got an idea to improve on the product when you put out a version of your own.
Outline your product well
A large number of negative reviews are just because the product didn’t meet the customer’s expectations. It may have been smaller than they imagined, or it may not work for the purpose the customer intended.
This is a common source of angst for sellers, because it’s not really a fault of the product, just a customer buying it for the wrong purpose.
The best way to avoid this is to be meticulous in making sure your listing and images show off your product as well as possible. What it is for, how to use it, exactly how big it is.
It’s a good idea to include photos from multiple angles, as well as a photo that shows the product next to something else, to give customers an idea of the scale.
Videos work extremely well for this reason – even a short video showing a 360° view of your product may help in reducing customer mistakes, and subsequent negative reviews.
Don’t go overboard with review requests
There’s a temptation when sending review requests to send a bunch of emails or messages, until the customer finally gives in and writes a review.
Don’t do this.
You’re already asking a favor from your customer, to give their time to post a review for you. The last thing you want to do is turn the customer against you by pestering them over and over, asking for a review. Several things could happen:
- The customer doesn’t leave a review
- They don’t buy from you again
- Their experience turns negative, and they post a negative review/seller feedback
Best practice is to send ONE email request or Messenger sequence. If the customer doesn’t want to leave a review, that’s fine.
Give your customer a great unboxing experience
Did you know there’s a Youtube channel called Unbox Therapy, with over 1500 videos that are essentially a guy taking products out of their box for the first time? That channel has over 13 million subscribers!
These numbers go to show that people love the experience of buying something new, opening it up and using it for the first time. It’s a rush, and it’s also the first impression someone has of your actual, physical product.
You only get one chance to make a first impression.
Give your customer a positive feeling when opening their package, and there’s a higher chance they leave a good review. Even if you don’t have a “sexy” product like high-value electronics, you can still package it nicely, so that it:
- Shows off your brand
- Makes your customer feel like they bought something high-end
If you received something in a plain cardboard box or clear plastic bag and nothing else, the first impression is going to be that the product is sub-standard. It’s not something you write a 5-star review about.
Deliver free content
Another way is to add extra content with your purchase. It could be informational (an instructional ebook or an ebook of recipes), an add-on for the product, or just a small gift.
Giving the customer something a little extra raises the perceived value of their purchase. Even if the actual product they are buying wasn’t anything special, they come out of the purchase with a good feeling by getting more than they paid for.
Make sure you don’t confuse this with incentivizing reviews. Don’t say anything about the extra gift being in exchange for a review, or it could get you in hot water with Amazon.
How To Get Reviews on Amazon: How To Deal With Negative Reviews
No one likes getting a bad review.
If you’re getting a lot of reviews, it’s inevitable that some will be bad. The thought strikes fear into the heart of sellers everywhere, but the truth is, unhappy customers are a part of running a business. How you deal with them is what separates good businesses from great businesses.
People have a lot of crazy ideas on how to deal with negative reviews. Some good ideas, most bad. Here are a few simple things you should do with a 1-star rolls in.
A lot of people act like the world is ending when a negative review comes in. It leads to knee-jerk reactions. I once saw someone desperately asking around for advice in a community page after they got a bad review.
“I finally found the customer on Facebook. After I sent them a message they blocked me and turned their account to private! Help, what do I do now?”
The first advice if you get a negative review is… don’t panic! Bad reviews happen. People have different expectations, and different viewpoints. It can be hard to please every single person.
In fact, one or two negative reviews can actually be a good thing. Particularly in a world where more and more customers are concerned about fake reviews.
A listing with only 5 star reviews comes off as suspicious, whereas a listing with a few lower ratings, and an overall rating between 4.5-4.8 stars feels a lot more authentic.
Take it seriously, reach out to the customer
First instinct is often to get combative. “The customer is using it wrong!” “They should know what to expect!”
Most of the time (there are exceptions), your customer has a serious gripe. It could be something you hadn’t thought of. It could be something in the listing you thought was clear, but wasn’t clear to this customer.
Whatever it is, you should take a negative review as an opportunity to fix a problem. For any business, customer satisfaction is the most important thing. If your customer isn’t satisfied, don’t blame it on them.
Whenever you get a negative review, you should reach out to the customer (through Amazon’s buyer-seller messages) and make it right. The short-term loss of offering a refund or replacement can be offset if you end up with a happy customer who buys from you again.
As a bonus, if you make the customer happy with a refund or replacement, they may even take back their negative review.
Additionally you can leave a public comment on the review. A professional response shows anyone reading your reviews that you are serious about quality and customer satisfaction. Potentially mitigating the effect of the negative review.
Ask Amazon to delete the review
Amazon has guidelines for what can and can’t be included in product reviews. If a customer review violates these guidelines, Amazon will remove the review from your listing.
On top of that, if you’re selling FBA and a customer’s review relates to shipping problems, Amazon will often strikethrough the review, and comment that the review relates to them, not to the product.
Don’t think that Amazon will remove every negative review. Your first action should still be to take it seriously. But you may be surprised what Amazon is willing to remove.
How To Get Reviews on Amazon: Amazon Reviews Terms of Service
Part of the reason Amazon product reviews are so contentious is because of the ToS. Amazon’s review policies are extremely strict, as are the consequences for those who break them.
It’s vital that you understand what flies and what doesn’t when asking for reviews on Amazon. Don’t take the risk of losing your review privileges, or having your account suspended.
If you were an Amazon seller several years ago, you know how big “incentivized reviews” were.
Incentivized reviews used to be commonplace on Amazon. This means sellers would pay, or offer incentives, for people to leave reviews.
This could mean offering a free product in exchange for a review, providing a discount or coupon code for reviewers, or just straight up paying for reviews. It made getting loads of reviews easy… if you’re willing to pay for it.
Amazon put an end to incentivized reviews in October 2016, when an update to their policies banned anything to do with this tactic. The policy covers things like:
- Offering discounts in exchange for reviews
- Giving away free products in exchange for reviews
- Paying people to leave you reviews
- Asking your friends and family to leave you reviews
- Asking people to specifically leave a POSITIVE review
- Writing a review for a product that you have a financial stake in
- Trading reviews with other sellers
Breaking these rules is no light matter. Amazon has been known to sue people involved in review manipulation. Countless more sellers have had their accounts suspended for breaking the rules.
At the very least, you can expect Amazon to delete any reviews that are known or suspected to have been acquired via shady means.
To this day, people still try and skirt the rules, usually offering under-the-table PayPal refunds to people for leaving reviews. It’s a big risk to take though, and not worth risking your business over.
Family & Friends
To get their first few reviews, a lot of sellers get family members, friends, or friends of friends to buy their products. This seems like a great idea at first, but as mentioned above, it counts as an incentivized review. Therefore doing this is against Amazon’s Terms.
If you think that Amazon won’t notice, you might be surprised. They are extremely good at spotting cases like this, by matching IP addresses, shipping addresses, or anything that can link you and your buyers.
Another thing that can may get you into trouble is the wording in your review requests.
Amazon wants “honest” reviews. Many consumers these days are suspicious of the legitimacy of reviews online, and on Amazon in particular. As part of Amazon’s fight against this, you are not allowed to:
- Ask for people to leave positive reviews
- Ask customers to leave a review only if they are satisfied
- Divert unhappy customers to another feedback mechanism
This may not be as serious as incentivized reviews, and probably isn’t going to get you suspended. But with Amazon’s increasing willingness to shut off reviews on product listings, it’s probably not worth leaving it to chance. Always ask for honest reviews.
Asking a customer to change/remove their review
If a customer decides to take back their negative review after you follow up, that’s great! But this has to be treated as an added bonus.
Recent changes to Amazon’s review policies forbid sellers from asking customers to change or remove their review – no matter how nicely you ask.
Even if it was legal, it’s not a good idea in terms of the customer experience. How is a customer going to react if they keep getting asked to take down their review? They are going to see your business in a very unprofessional light, and won’t buy from you again. Chances are they’ll share their experience with others, and they won’t buy from you either.
A bad review isn’t the end of the world. 100 bad reviews may be, but if you’re getting this many negative reviews, it probably comes down to the product itself.
Review groups are one of the last vestiges left over from the days of incentivized reviews.
These groups are intended to connect sellers looking to get reviews, with customers looking for free or cheap products. Sellers will offer free products and/or commission on the condition that a 5-star review is posted.
While they are less common now that this practice is illegal, they still exist. Using PayPal to skirt around Amazon, many buyers and sellers operate in these groups.
Participating in a group like this, as a seller, is a bad idea. It’s all to easy for Amazon to find out who is in the group, and as a result, ban you. Plus, we’ve heard stories about Amazon flagging reviewers who are part of review groups, and putting review blocks on products they review.
Deal groups or sites are a good option for product launches, quickly liquidating inventory or getting a boost in keyword rankings. Just watch out for people offering incentivized reviews in these groups, if so it might be best to stay away.
How to Get Reviews on Amazon: In Summary
The struggle sellers have of getting more reviews and a higher rating than the next guy is not going away any time soon. It’s always going to be a contentious issue, and Amazon seems to be getting more serious about faked or inauthentic reviews.
The good news is, a lot of sellers aren’t following the steps outlined in this guide. They are not proactive in getting reviews, they don’t handle them in a professional manner, and they don’t realize that some reviews can actually be removed by Amazon.
Take this advice on how to get Amazon reviews into practice, and there’s a good chance you’ll start off a step ahead of the game.