Amazon Gratitude: It's a Two-Way Street

by Colleen Quattlebaum

Every Amazon seller wants positive feedback - and lots of it. The reasons for this are quite obvious: positive feedback leads to a better reputation, more Buy Box clicks and an eventual uptick in order volume. Positive feedback also makes the seller feel good.

Although receiving feedback is clearly important to sellers, leaving feedback is not at the top of most shoppers' to-do lists. The sad reality is that less than 10 percent of Amazon customers (far less if you're not using FeedbackFive) take time to leave feedback. And, unlike the eBay marketplace, sellers cannot share public praise (or frustration) for customers.

With so few Amazon shoppers (and even fewer merchants) taking the time to share their gratitude for a smooth transaction, a seller-initiated thank-you note can make a big impact. Here's why.

Meet Mr. Perkins

Imagine this scenario: You stop by a locally-owned supermarket, and you load up your shopping cart with this week's groceries. You navigate to the checkout counter, and to your delight you notice the shop owner, Mr. Perkins, is bagging groceries. This is the perfect example of why you love to shop local. Mr. Perkins doesn't sit in the back office counting his money; rather, he stays engaged with customers and does the heavy lifting (literally).

As your groceries proceed down the conveyer belt, Mr. Perkins begins to place items into bags. You look forward to Mr. Perkins' glowing approval of your purchase. After all, you're doing your part to help a small business compete in an era of big box stores. As Mr. Perkins puts the last egg carton into your bag, something shocking happens: he never even looks up to acknowledge your existence. No smile, no "thank you,"...nothing. As you leave the store, you can't help but question your shopping decision. If Mr. Perkins doesn't appreciate you, why bother buying from him?

Good question...

Showing Gratitude Makes All the Difference

Let's flip the Mr. Perkins scenario around for a moment. Instead of being gruff, Mr. Perkins smiles and goes out of his way to help you. He even offers to carry your groceries to your vehicle. On your way out to the car, Mr. Perkins makes a point to thank you for being a loyal customer.

As you drive away, you can't help but feel special. Not only does Mr. Perkins value your relationship, it's abundantly clear that your patronage makes a difference to his business. Now, instead of feeling jaded about your experience, you're a lifelong advocate of Mr. Perkins' supermarket. When you arrive home, you like his Facebook page and leave him a 5-star rating.

Isn't it amazing how a simple act of graciousness resulted in a completely different outcome?

What Mr. Perkins Can Teach Us

So, what can Mr. Perkins teach us about Amazon customer relationships?

Well, for starters, if you never reach out to customers, you might unknowingly send the wrong message. Sure, some customers think they're simply buying from Amazon.com, Inc. ("Amazon"). On the other hand, many actually seek you out, opting for your better-than-the-Buy-Box prices and unbelievable service. Showing your appreciation goes a long way to reinforce this reality. It also builds goodwill with shoppers, thereby increasing your chances of receiving a 5-star feedback.

So, how should you reach out and thank your customers? Obviously, you're much too busy to do that manually for each order. Initially, you could randomly pick customers to thank. Repeat buyers might be a good place to start. In the longrun, however, even thanking repeat buyers is a daunting task to coordinate.

Alternatively, you could use a follow-up automation tool, such as FeedbackFive. FeedbackFive allows you to build rules and customizable thank-you campaigns, ensuring each customer receives exactly the right message at the right time.

feedbackfive-thank-you-email-screenshot

You might even find that being proactive reduces the chance of receiving negative feedback.

Important note: Before sending any messages, you'll definitely want to familiarize yourself with Amazon's messaging guidelines (found here).

Show Your Gratitude, Every Time

Your Amazon customers want to like you. However, if you never thank them or confirm their satisfaction, you're destined to fade into the obscurity among millions of other third-party sellers. Stand out in the crowd by showing your gratitude, every single time.

Sign up for FeedbackFive, and start showing customers how much they mean to you.

Originally published on November 16, 2017, updated July 16, 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.

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