As an Amazon seller, you know how important it is to get reviews for your private-label products.
Reviews help boost sales and build trust with customers, but how do you go about getting them?
The good news is there are plenty of legitimate ways to get reviews on Amazon.
In this article, we’ll be breaking down a complete list of 13 of the most effective strategies that can help you start getting more reviews right away.
From making great products, to creating follow-up systems and building relationships with customers – these methods will ensure that your private-label products have the best chance of success on Amazon.
Plus, we’ll also cover a list of 6 review-generating methods you should absolutely avoid if you want to keep your seller account safe.
Juicy. Let’s dive in!
What does Amazon deem acceptable when asking for reviews?
Before getting into how to actually get reviews on Amazon, it’s important to know what is and isn’t acceptable in terms of how you go about asking for them.
Amazon continues to go to great lengths to weed out fake reviews on the platform and according to its guidelines, what isn’t acceptable is incentivized reviews.
Sellers are not allowed to offer any kind of incentive or discount for providing a review.
This includes offering any cash, free products, or other perks for providing a review.
Sellers are also not allowed to manipulate reviews in any way by altering the content of a customer’s review, modifying how customers can leave feedback, or creating fake buyer accounts to post reviews.
You should also avoid using systems to filter who you ask for a review in order to avoid a negative review.
An obvious example of this is companies that use a double-sided insert that on one side invites a customer to contact support if they are unhappy and on the other side to leave a review if they are happy.
Violating these rules and regulations could get your Amazon seller account suspended or even banned.
As an Amazon FBA business owner, it’s important to stay up to date with the latest changes in Amazon’s terms of service.
So be sure to sign up for our newsletter below for weekly updates of all the latest need-to-know information in the world of eCommerce!
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How to get reviews on Amazon – without breaking the rules!
To build a long-lasting, successful business you need to instead focus on legitimate strategies for getting quality reviews and avoiding negative reviews.
Here’s a roundup of the best strategies we use to get reviews on Amazon.
#1: Sell a great product
This one’s a no-brainer. The most surefire way to get more Amazon reviews is to start by selling an awesome product.
Make sure the quality of your products meets and exceeds customer expectations, so they will be more likely to leave you a glowing review after their purchase.
To do this, it’s important to thoroughly vet any suppliers you may be working with and ensure that their products are up to the standards you expect.
Be clear about the features you need in the product, and the improvements you’re looking to make in order to differentiate from the competition.
But remember, rather than focusing all your attention on the competition, focus instead on what your product can do for the customer.
If you create a better product, Amazon buyers will make sure you beat your competition.
Also, consider how you package your items and how quickly they arrive – these are factors that can make or break your reviews.
#2: Increase your sales volume
Implementing the strategies we’ll cover in this article will increase your review-to-sales ratio, but one of the biggest levers is simply more sales.
The more products you sell, the more reviews you’ll get.
So, focus on optimizing your listing to drive organic traffic and use targeted marketing campaigns to get in front of potential customers.
Don’t forget about Amazon’s powerful Sponsored Ads program – it’s a great way to boost sales volume quickly.
Then, make sure you’re utilizing the remainder of the strategies we’ll cover next.
#3: Use the Amazon Vine program
The Amazon Vine program is a great way to get more authentic reviews.
It’s an invite-only program for trusted and experienced reviewers, so you know your customers will be leaving quality reviews.
This service should be used sparingly since it does cost money, but it can be a big help for getting traction in the early stages of a product launch.
When using the Vine program, you select the ASINs you want to be reviewed and how many units you want to make available for the program.
You can submit up to 30 units of any ASIN to be reviewed by Vine reviewers.
A variation counts as one ASIN. You can enrol all variations of a product to Vine individually meaning you can get up to 30 reviews per variation for an even bigger boost.
Since the Amazon Early Reviewer Program was closed in 2021, Vine is easily the best way to get quick, early reviews for a new product.
The one caveat of course is that in order for Vine to have a positive impact on your Amazon products they need to actually be good products.
Using Vine won’t fix a bad product, and if you submit a poor-quality product to Vine, be prepared for negative reviews.
Some Amazon sellers worry that Vine reviews are overly critical, but that hasn’t been the case in my experience.
If you have a good product, Vine is a no-brainer.
#4: Use the ‘Request a Review’ button
Amazon has now made it easier than ever for sellers to ask customers for reviews.
The ‘Request a Review’ button is available in Seller Central and allows you to quickly and easily send emails to your customers, asking them to leave product reviews.
To use the feature, go to the Manage orders page, choose a specific order you want to target and click ‘Request a review’.
Your customer will then receive a templated email coming from Amazon that prompts them to leave a review.
The benefits of this method include:
- Delivery rate. Because this email comes from Amazon it bypasses any opt-outs of buyer/seller messaging.
- Review rate. The email is visually interactive allowing customers to simply tap a star rating without having to write a review – this has increased review rates massively.
- Language settings. Amazon automatically translates the email into the customer’s preferred language.
- Always compliant. Amazon creates the content of the email so you can rest assured it will always be compliant.
However, if you’re generating a lot of sales this can become quite time-consuming.
Luckily, there is an easier way…
#5: Automate the ‘Request a Review’ button
Manually requesting Amazon reviews can become very time-intensive.
Thankfully by using tools like Helium 10’s Follow Up you can request reviews on autopilot.
Simply set up the automation inside the Follow-Up tool and customize which orders you do and don’t want it requesting reviews from.
You can set it to delay the request a certain amount of days, and ensure it doesn’t request reviews from any refunded orders.
This feature alone can save you tens of hours every month and is a perfect example of why investing in good tools can provide a huge return on investment.
#6: Send follow-up messages on Amazon
If, rather than sending Amazon-templated review requests, you prefer to send personalized review requests you can do that too.
To do this you’ll need to use the buyer/seller messaging system inside Seller Central.
Again, you have the choice of either carrying this process out manually and writing to each customer individually…
Sending customized messages helps you create more of a branded message and have more control over the post-purchase experience.
However, the challenge of this method is that many buyers have opted out of buyer/seller messaging and as such delivery rates can be lower than the Request a Review button.
Whichever method you choose, choose one. Amazon doesn’t allow you to make review requests through both buyer/seller messaging and the Request a Review button.
As you’ve probably guessed, my preference (and strong recommendation) is to use the Request a Review button.
#7: Turn customer feedback into product reviews
If you’re getting good seller feedback from customers, why not try and turn that into a product review?
Many Amazon customers don’t realize there is a difference between product reviews and seller feedback.
As such, they often leave positive reviews for your product in the seller feedback section of your account.
For a private label Amazon seller, this is of little use and can be quite frustrating when you’re desperate for more positive reviews of your product.
So in order to remedy the situation, you can reach out to each customer leaving seller feedback and ask if they would be so kind as to also leave a product review.
If they have already left good seller feedback, there’s every chance they will also leave a positive review.
#8: Email your existing audience
If you already have an email list of customers, this can be a great place to start when it comes to getting more reviews.
By sending a carefully crafted email to your existing contacts, you can encourage them to leave product reviews on Amazon for your products.
You can also include a link that takes them directly to the page where they can leave the review.
This convenience factor will help to drive up the number of reviews and make it more likely that your campaigns are successful.
If you use an email service like MailerLite, you can not only track how many people open your emails but also which links in the email they clicked.
This makes it easy to measure how effective your campaigns are and how much success you are having in getting more reviews for your products.
#9: Ask following good customer service
You can also use customer service as an opportunity to request reviews from customers.
Make sure that you’re going out of your way to provide the best customer service and go above and beyond when it comes to helping them with their orders.
If possible, reach out once their order has been received (or even before if you know it’s been shipped) and ask how everything went.
If they’re happy with their order, you could then politely ask if they’d be willing to leave a product review on Amazon.
This type of approach is often effective because customers feel appreciated for their business and are more likely to take the time to write a review when asked in this way.
It often leads to higher quality positive reviews because the customer has had a good experience with both your product and your customer service.
#10: Create product inserts
You can also include product inserts in the packaging of your products when they’re shipped out.
These are great because they allow you to control how the message is delivered and you can include a direct link to where customers can leave their reviews.
Product inserts are especially effective if you’re getting a lot of repeat business, as it gives customers a gentle reminder that you would really appreciate their feedback.
It also makes it easier for them to leave reviews because they don’t have to go searching for your product page on Amazon.
The direct link included in the product insert takes them directly to where they can leave the review and further removes friction in the process.
That said, the conversion rate of inserts to reviews using this strategy has become lower and lower over recent years.
Customers see this kind of insert so much they have come to expect it and as such, they rarely grab enough attention to provoke any kind of action.
So, instead of simply asking for a review on your insert, you can follow our strategy and take things one step further…
#11: Use ManyChat flows
Instead of including an insert that simply asks for a review, we invite customers to scan a QR code or enter a simple website address that goes to a ManyChat flow.
Inside this ManyChat flow we offer the customer a free gift (usually a PDF guide related to the product).
By doing this we are not only building a good rapport with the customer, but we are also building a customer list for future product launches.
You of course have to be careful with this method as Amazon’s terms of service are clear in that we should not incentivize reviews.
So the messaging must be clear, and not offer anything in exchange for a review.
But, if we offer additional value to customers up front, and then, later on, ask them for a review, this should keep you in Bezos’s good books.
#12: Use retargeting ads
Retargeting ads are a great way to get more reviews on Amazon.
With retargeting, you can show targeted ads to customers who previously visited your product page.
Whilst not every customer who visited your product page will buy, the average Amazon conversion rate of 12.5% suggests that more than 1 in 10 will.
By using a tool like PixelMe you can create an audience of these people who have visited your page, and then run a simple social media ad showing your product.
Include copy that asks customers who bought the product to leave a review, and as an extra benefit ask customers who didn’t purchase to reconsider.
There are a number of different platforms you can run retargeting ads on but Facebook and Instagram Ads are a great place to start due to their wide reach, trusted reputation and relatively low cost.
By using retargeting ads you can remind customers how awesome your product is, how much they enjoyed the customer service experience and how important reviews are for other potential buyers.
This type of gentle reminder will often result in an increase in reviews for your product.
To get the best results from retargeting ads, make sure to track how well the ads are performing, adjust the messaging accordingly and test different audiences to see how they respond.
#13: Use organic social media
Organic social media posts can be an effective way to get more reviews for your Amazon products.
The key to getting the most out of this method is to have a robust, engaged audience that already knows how awesome your product is.
You should post regularly on platforms like TikTok, Facebook and Instagram as well as comment on related posts and interact with other members of the community.
Post content that is interesting, entertaining and informative while also including calls-to-action to leave reviews on your Amazon page.
For example, you could post a video review or unboxing of your product, then link directly to the product page on Amazon in the description.
As you can see, when deciding how to get reviews on Amazon there are a lot of tactics at your disposal.
What’s important though is that you use legitimate methods to acquire product reviews in order to protect the longevity of your business.
Want to avoid illegitimate review generation methods and protect your Seller Central account?
How to get reviews on Amazon – the BAD way
It’s an unfortunate reality of selling on Amazon – some sellers will take unscrupulous measures to solicit reviews on their products.
These bad practices can often go undetected for a period of time and this can be incredibly frustrating for those of us trying to generate Amazon reviews through legitimate means.
But the reality is, using any so-called ‘black hat’ tactics is a major risk to your business and can result in your Seller Central account being suspended or even banned – so it’s important to know how to spot them and how to avoid them.
#1: Incentivize reviews
The most common practice sellers use to Amazon reviews illegitimately is the offer of a discounted or free product in exchange for a favorable review.
This involves communicating to buyers that they will only receive the gift or discount once their product review has been posted.
Whilst the offering of a free product in return for an honest review used to be allowed, the practice was outlawed by Amazon in 2016 after a decline in consumer trust surrounding its review authenticity.
It’s important to avoid this kind of review manipulation in order to protect your Amazon account.
#2: Ask friends and family
Another common tactic used to illegitimately generate reviews on Amazon is to ask friends, family or colleagues to post reviews in order to boost the product’s ratings.
Whilst it might seem harmless at first glance, this practice is also prohibited by Amazon and can result in a suspension of your account if caught.
Amazon does make this one slightly confusing as they actually provide you with links to ‘share a product with friends’ after creating a new listing.
So the interpretation here seems to be that it’s fine for friends and family to support your business and buy your product – but if you want to be super safe they should avoid leaving a review.
I’ve unknowingly had friends and family buy products to support our business many times and some have left reviews. It’s never caused any issues, but it is something you should try and be careful about.
The core issue is that it’s important to make sure any reviews you receive are independent, honest and from a customer who has actually purchased the product.
Any review generated by someone who is not an actual customer of yours should be avoided in order to protect your Amazon account.
#3: Buy reviews
One of the worst and most dangerous tactics used to generate reviews on Amazon is buying them; a prohibited practice which can result in a permanent suspension of your account.
Not only are you risking how your brand will be perceived if caught, but also how it will affect your business as a whole when Amazon finds out.
It’s also possible that Amazon can trace back how reviews were generated if they happen to look into your account and it’s not worth the risk.
If you’re serious about building a real brand that customers love, swerve this one by an absolute mile.
#4: Take part in review groups
Another tactic to avoid is taking part in a review group.
Review groups involve sellers joining groups on social media, dedicated WhatsApp chats or even paying for ‘review clubs’ where they can offer free samples of their product to members as a means of incentivizing reviews.
Whilst it might seem like an easy way to get reviews, these practices are also in breach of Amazon’s terms of service and can result in a suspension.
Amazon has very sophisticated detection tools to help them spot review manipulation and is believed to rate the quality of each buyer on their platform.
Sell products to too many low-quality deal-hunting buyers that conveniently leave reviews for every product they buy and you could find yourself in hot water.
This advice would also cover review swaps with other sellers – these can be even easier to detect so should be avoided.
#5: Ask specifically for positive reviews
When asking customers to leave reviews, it’s important to never ask for a specific star rating or any indication that the review should be positive.
Doing so is also in breach of Amazon’s terms and conditions and can result in an account suspension if caught.
Remember – this includes diverting customers to only leave a product review if they have had a positive experience.
The best way to ask your customers to write reviews is by simply thanking them for their purchase and how much you value their feedback.
Doing so will encourage customers to leave honest reviews, maintain your account in good standing with Amazon, and build your brand credibility over time.
#6: Offer rebates
Offering rebates to customers was a popular strategy following Amazon’s 2016 review changes.
The premise was simple: customers pay full price for the product (a strong signal to Amazon’s ranking algorithm) and are then rebated for the full price of the product post-purchase.
Then, when customers leave five-star reviews they are seen as legitimate purchases and not discounted purchases for review purposes.
However, in 2022, this strategy was explicitly referenced in updated terms of service with Amazon categorically stating it was against the rules.
This meant sellers (those that wanted to play by the rules, at least) were not able to include this as part of their review strategy.
Whilst this is not an exhaustive list, these are the main things to avoid.
The takeaway is to stay up to date with Amazon’s terms of service, avoid buying fake reviews or engaging in review manipulation in any way and always try and encourage genuine reviews from Amazon users.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do products with zero reviews make sales?
Yes, products with zero reviews can make sales. Amazon shoppers also look at product images, descriptions and ratings of similar items in the same category when deciding whether or not to purchase a product.
My advice would always be to start marketing your product right out of the gate to maximize the so-called ‘honeymoon period’ when new products are shown some extra ranking love by Amazon.
Is it OK to ask customers to leave a review?
Yes, asking your customers to leave a review is perfectly fine – however, you should never explicitly ask for a positive review, or offer any sort of incentive for leaving a review.
This is against Amazon’s terms of service and can result in a suspension.
Do reviews impact a product’s organic ranking?
Yes, reviews can have an impact on how well your product ranks in Amazon’s search results.
The more positive reviews your product has, the higher your conversion rate will likely be. This will produce more sales and boost your product ranking in Amazon’s search results.
However, it’s not just the number of reviews that matters – how recent they are, how high the star ratings are, and if they are verified reviews are all factors that are also taken into consideration.
How to get reviews on Amazon: The Bottom Line
In summary, the safest way to get reviews for your private-label products is through organic means.
This involves focusing on getting your product quality right and providing excellent customer service – which will result in customers leaving you positive feedback naturally and avoiding unnecessary negative reviews.
To accelerate your progress you can manually request reviews for each order or, better yet, automate the process with a tool like Helium 10.
These aspects will provide most of your reviews, but you can also sprinkle in some extra strategies such as reaching out to existing customer lists and running some retargeting ads.
Remember though – avoid falling foul of Amazon’s terms of service by using black hat methods to generate reviews.
Your Amazon account, long-term business health, and evening sleep quality will thank you for it!