#57 Q & A Tuesday: UK vs US Seller Central Accounts; ASIN transfer US to UK or UK to US; Friends and Family Reviews; HTML in product descriptions
Q& A Tuesday No. 7 Show Notes:
Q1: Anila: I know that inventory listed in Amazon.com can be listed on Amazon.co.uk under the same ASIN but can it work the other way round too? i.e. listed in UK first and same ASIN listed in US after?
Michael : Hi Anila, not done it personally but I believe so. Talk to SC – but maybe talk to more than one rep so you check it out properly.
Seller Central Response:
“Dear Anila,Thank you for contacting us. As per your concern, I would like to inform you that you can use the same ASIN in various marketplaces. Lets say, if you are selling an item on Amazon.co.uk then you can list the same item with same ASIN on Amazon.com or any other market as well.”
Q2: Dan: Quick question for those selling in the US and the UK – once you’ve set up your US seller central account, and then when you’re planning to sell the same product in the UK also, do you set up a completely new UK seller central account? When I try to set up my UK account, using my business email address, it says the email address is already in use. So should I set up a completely new UK seller central account using a different email address, and pay the monthly fees separately, or should I be somehow linking my US and UK accounts?
A2: Simple answer, yes, you need a new Seller Central Account for the UK. With a different email address. But actually it is a Europe account so it includes UK, Germany, France, Italy, Spain Amazon marketplaces (ie all Amazon European marketplaces).
I think this is actually good news in that it diversifies your risk – even if your US account was shut down (worst case scenario), your Europe one should be safe – and vice versa (as ever, check the latest ToS at the time of reading however!)
Q3: Ben: I noticed in your blog post to support the latest podcast that you recommend using <b>bold</b> html in the listing. [also paragraph <p>paragraph</p>] I can’t get this to work for love nor money…is there something I’m missing or have amazon stopped this? All my competition has bold in their listings…
Rob Sleath – “this has been against TOS for at least a year, if not longer. However general consensus seems to be to do it until you get told otherwise. I think they typically give you a performance notification/violation and blank out the description entirely. Performance notifications etc. are serious, particularly if you’ve had a few before. If you decide to do it you might need to do it via flatfile upload if it won’t let you enter it in the backend.”
Michael: It may be that Amazon have stopped the ability to do this directly in certain categories. I tend to copy or try to beat the competition until Amazon raps me over the knuckles but you need to weigh up risk and reward.
Q4: Ruth Hi everyone, what are the rules now on getting friends and family to review your products? Is this no longer allowed or is it allowed with a disclaimer? I am selling in the UK and after many delays my product is finally being on its way so I am working on my listing and my launch plan. I am also looking at review groups but I do have many friends and family wanting to support me and buy my product which is great, but if they could review it as well that would be even better. Also, if you sell items through other means (like in a shop or market or somewhere that’s not on amazon) – can the customers still leave a review on amazon?
Hi Ruth, as far as I know it’s always been against ToS (Terms of Service) in theory. I think it always was, to be honest.
It’s an obvious conflict of interest. Amazon and their customers obviously want objective reviews. We obviously want favourable reviews!
Having said which, if Amazon can’t link the buyer to you, you should be safe. Apparently, it’s easy for them to put you together if you’ve used the same IP address etc., otherwise you should be reasonably safe. I’ve heard that they may be able to trace your friends if you are Facebook Friends with them. But I have no strong proof or insider knowledge either way. Again a risk you need to weigh up. I might do it on a small scale if I had to but I wouldn’t want to do a large giveaway that way.
Again, you have to weigh up risks and benefits.
Risking a listing suspension over HTML in description is probably not worth doing, as the Description is no longer indexed by the algorithm and probably has little impact on buyers and thus conversion these days. So if you have had too many performance notifications, I would give that a miss.
But getting Reviews is vital, so if you have no other ways of doing it, I might push it a bit more on that front.