Rapid Response: Why Taking Quick Action Pays Off

by Colleen Quattlebaum

Within a matter of minutes, your feedback history could take a drastic turn for the worse.

That is, of course, unless you have a process in place to quickly deal with negative feedback. Unfortunately, some merchants never consider a proactive feedback strategy—until it's too late.

In this post, we'll discuss why a rapid response plan is important to today's merchant.

Understanding the Customer's Perspective

Your niece's birthday is next week. As you normally do when buying gifts, you pop open the Amazon marketplace on your smartphone. Within seconds, you find the board game she wants, add it to your cart and check out. You opt for standard shipping (the game is surprisingly not available with your Prime membership), which means the gift should arrive within five business days. Her party is still a week away, so that time frame should provide plenty of time. (Or so you thought.)

Next week arrives, and you have not received the package. Come to think of it, you never saw any shipping confirmations in your inbox. Something isn't right. You log into your Amazon account and are shocked to find out the bad news. Your order was never shipped. The merchant failed to hold up his end of the bargain.

You're a fellow merchant, so you decide to hold off filing an A-to-z Guarantee claim. Instead, you send a polite message to the seller. You ask about the item's status and emphasize the importance of receiving your niece's gift on time. Another day goes by, and the seller is still unresponsive. This is starting to get annoying.

Your next move is to request a refund through the A-to-z program. Amazon.com, Inc. ("Amazon") issues you an immediate credit, but this still doesn't help you obtain your gift. The party is tomorrow, and you're no closer to a gift in hand.

The seller has left you no other option than leaving negative feedback. If the merchant had promptly communicated with you and explained the situation, you would have likely given him the benefit of the doubt. Instead, you received no communication (even days after leaving feedback) and now have to actually visit a store.

You most likely provide customers with much better experiences than this fictitious example. However, there are circumstances when customers feel equally mistreated—and they aren't shy about telling the world via the Amazon feedback rating system. Some buyers even leave negative feedback as their first line of defense.

How can you stay on top of negative feedback? Do you have a process for monitoring customer satisfaction (or dissatisfaction)? Allow me to introduce a nifty FeedbackFive feature.

Why Negative Feedback Alerts Can be a Lifesaver

You're too busy to be constantly checking your Seller Central feedback dashboard. Even if you had the time, several days may pass without receiving any new customer ratings. Manual feedback monitoring could be time spent on more value-added activities, such as inventory management, repricing or new product research.

Luckily, our FeedbackFive tool automatically alerts you (via email or text) when negative or neutral feedback is received.

Instead of allowing negative feedback to fester, FeedbackFive makes it possible to know within hours. With an informed understanding of the customer's concerns, you can swiftly take the steps necessary to salvage the relationship. Don't miss this opportunity to provide excellent service and turn around the situation.

Don't Be Shy to Request Removal

Once you've successfully resolved the customer's concerns, it's now time to address the negative feedback. Amazon states that "You may request that a buyer remove feedback. However, you may not offer nor pay any incentive to a buyer for either providing or removing feedback." In other words, as long as you avoid any prohibited seller activities, requesting removal is a perfectly legitimate activity.

Of course, there's no guarantee that customers will take the time to remove (or update) their feedback ratings. To increase the likelihood of a successful removal, consider these steps:

  • Log into the Buyer-Seller messaging portal
  • Find the correct order
  • Compose and send a removal request

If you're already using FeedbackFive, then you know that you can also send feedback removal requests without ever leaving our intuitive interface. Users also love our prebuilt feedback removal solicitations, which save hours of work.

Know Quicker, Respond Faster

Unless you intend to monitor the Seller Central dashboard every few hours, you really should consider enabling FeedbackFive's alerting system. Existing customers can log in here to check their settings (Lite, Basic, & Standard users must upgrade to Pro). If you're not already a customer, click here to claim your 14-day free trial.

Originally published on September 5, 2016, updated April 24, 2019

This post is accurate as of the date of publication. Some features and information may have changed due to product updates or Amazon policy changes.