Are Fake Buyer Accounts Killing Your Amazon Product Launches?


Leo Limin explains the impact of fake buyer accounts on product launches and why one launch fails while another succeeds but inexplicable reasons for an Amazon launch failure

  • Mexico hosting company
  • Amazon in 2015 and 7 figure seller
  • $1m seller group MDS

Artificial Intelligence

  • Amazon is changing fast
  • When you launch you need to look into the future
  • Algorithms are changing all the time – see reviews display and ranking – constant test
  • Personalising the algorithms for each buyer
  • They know your interests and are testing things against those
  • Not all buyers are the same or equal – fake buyer accounts exist
  • Need to know this when launching products

Accounts Using Promos

  • Testing with different accounts with same products but different promos on and ranking is very different
  • Don’t know much about Amazon and your product might be in a different algorithm than one that succeeded
  • Might be another buyer group that aren’t so well regarded by Amazon such as the fake buyer accounts
  • True that Amazon treats buyers differently
  • Launching a product is really hit or miss unless you can filter out the bad buyers

Filter out Buyers

  • Zonjump
  • Banning people and blacklisting them from their launch service to avoid fake buyer accounts
  • Analysed buyer activity – encourage MWSconnect to see details
  • Some buyers get kicked out of the system right away and others get kicked out later on
  • Huge difference in success using these tactics

Zonjump

  • Use a lot of Facebook
  • Filter out buyers for your launch based on the buyer activity
  • Lot of launches fail because bad actors suck up your promos and re-sell on eBay or even worse on your own listing
  • Using fake accounts to take advantage of the launch promos
  • If the launch fails but it’s not clear why…these bad actors might be the problem using fake buyer accounts
  • Hard to know who’s picking up your codes and then which accounts are buying
  • You want your product to go to good real customers

Bad Buyers

  • Amazon penalises bad buyers
  • Lot of sales to very new accounts you rank lower
  • Many purchases that are discounted purchases (more than 50%) then it’s a bad signal and mark
  • Buying only bad products or newly launched products
  • A buyer has to have bought of a number of sellers before Amazon qualifies him/her as a buyer
  • The buyers taking your launch products can be a key impact
  • Take all this into consideration on the buyers taking your promos

Tips to Overcome

  • New Sellers should research first
  • Give lower discounts as it’s better and keeps away the bad actors
  • Facebook launches and get good people into your manychat funnel
  • Get real people and not bad buyers

Data Leaks from Amazon

  • Data leaks from amazon seem to be getting into people’s hands
  • Chinese seller events openly talk about black hat tactics
  • Openly discuss what Amazon knows – coming from Amazon employees in China
  • Amazon have fired employees and are trying to stop it
  • A lot of info came out including how they treat buyers
  • ASIN detailed reports on Sellers being sourced as well for competitive advantage
  • More and more articles coming out on black hat techniques as well

Reviews

  • 5% – 12% threshold and after that people can’t leave reviews
  • Depends on the product and category nodes
  • Some products get more reviews naturally
  • Not natural for some products to get more reviews
  • Review ban on products that get too many reviews
  • Black hat people are getting these bans removed
  • Don’t get too many reviews

Content-jacking of Listings

  • People using Vendor Central accounts to do this
  • One of the most common tactics
  • Get an old ASIN and change something in Vendor Central and join another ASIN and get all the reviews
  • Amazon for some reason merges the ASIN and lets it happen
  • If a bad actor changes your listing then it’s very hard to change it back

2019 and Beyond Algorithm

  • A lot of Amazon engineers come from Google
  • Seeing Amazon morph into Google more and more
  • Google’s algorithm got found out and then Google had to fix a lot
  • Brands are winning on Google
  • Amazon is going there
  • Brands get easier ride in Amazon, more than 1 year, in Amazon Exclusives and get it easier to rank
  • The long game now and planning is key
  • Come with a strong brand, product and something you can control

PPC for Launches

  • Complexities in the algorithm and tactics used for PPC
  • Shift in PPC this year was more focus on relevance, less keywords and less impression share
  • Brand new product in a brand new category in a new account – you got no impressions and had todo giveaways to drive impressions on the main keyword
  • You drive traffic to your PPC to get sales and then get a level of trust from Amazon
  • Go slowly and build the trust with Amazon
  • Some people can launch just using PPC
  • PPC for 300 units a day – forget it – but for 20-50/day then PPC can work especially on the longer tail

Quality Score

  • Quality score associated with an account, campaign and ad group
  • Some people rank quickly, others take longer
  • Based on account and campaign level – don’t kill off old campaigns
  • Some people get PPC results grandfathered to them – he sells well and has a solid back track record

Giveaways

  • Will not phase out
  • Amazon makes a lot of money out of it
  • They love the idea of Sellers paying for the products that are given away to bring in Buyers
  • Ranking fast is more difficult right now
  • Do some giveaway and some rebates to mix it up
  • Use google adwords and facebook ads to manychat sequences
  • Launch many products not just a single product to spread your risk
  • Big sellers launch again and again with new products
  • Big Sellers get bigger  and bigger
  • Small sellers sometimes get discouraged and walk away
  • Establish more and more relationships with Amazon
  • Big Sellers have direct relationships and gatings setup

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