There are different kinds of Amazon seller emails. For example, in certain situations Amazon requires a seller to communicate with a buyer. We will discuss several below.
In subsequent posts, we will review other cases of ‘should-send’ and ‘never-send’ emails.
Questions, Returns, Problems and Claims
What are the situations which require you to communicate via email with customers? Here are four such cases:
Customer inquiries. When a customer asks a question, Amazon.com, Inc. (“Amazon”) requires a response, unless you specifically tell Amazon that no response is needed. Not only are you obliged to respond, but you must do so promptly in order to avoid negatively impacting your contact response time metrics.
Returned items. When a customer asks to return an item, you are required to write back with return information – or information explaining why the order is outside your return window.
Order problems. Amazon expects you to communicate proactively with buyers when problems arise. These could involve out-of-stock items, late shipments or any circumstances that keep you from meeting a customer’s normal expectations.
When someone files an A-to-z claim, Amazon generally expects to see that you have been communicating with this customer and will often review those communications when deciding ;how to handle a claim.
What About Phone Calls?
Normally, an email is the preferred method of communication. Sometimes, however, it is appropriate to pick up the phone – or use the headset. Those times include complex situations, when a lot of back and forth may be required to resolve the problem, or when the customer requests a call.
In other cases, however, it is best not to call. When a customer has requested a return authorization or sent an email that you have not marked as no-response-needed, Amazon will be watching for your email. So, it’s best to take care of business that way. Certain points during an A-to-z claim also require a seller email response. (See above for Amazon expectations.)
Customer Service Matters
From seller feedback requests to responding to order issues, email communication is an important part of any Amazon merchant’s customer service strategy. Responding to buyers in a timely fashion can go a long way toward managing expectations and resolving any fulfillment or customer service problems.
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Originally published on June 4, 2014, updated June 26, 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.