Breaking: Everything You Need to Know About Amazon’s Opt-Out of Buyer-Seller Messaging [Episode 16]

Welcome to Episode 16 of the E-BusinessOnline Podcast

Host & Speaker:  Fred McKinnon
Topic:   Amazon.Com’s new Opt-Out of Messaging
Summary:  This is a breaking news podcast episode to discuss the latest change by Amazon, allowing customer to opt-out of unsolicited buyer-seller messages.

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Amazon Allows Customers to Opt-Out of Unsolicited Messages

Hello EBO’ers:

In case you missed it, Amazon has yet again made a radical change in their Terms of Service that have a profound impact on 3rd Party Sellers.    Amazon is now allowing their customers to opt-out of what it deems to be “unsolicited” messages via the Buyer-Seller messaging system.   Only messages “critical” to the order are accepted if a customer has opted out.

Sellers may begin receiving emails like this:

Dear Seller,

 

We were unable to deliver the message you sent for order [xxx-xxxxxxx-xxxxxxx] because the buyer has chosen to opt out of receiving unsolicited messages from sellers.

However, even if a buyer has opted out of unsolicited messages, if you need to send them a message critical to completing his or her order, you can do it using Buyer-Seller Messaging:

  1. Go to Manage Orders.
  2. Click the buyer’s name in the list, which will take you to BuyerSeller Messaging.
  3. Select “Additional Information Required” as your subject, write your message, and click Send

If you tried to respond to a buyer and received a message that the buyer has opted out of unsolicited seller messages, please respond to the buyer on the original message thread (instead of starting a new thread) and make sure that his or her original message is included in your reply.

For your reference, the following messages are considered “critical” to complete the order:

  • Product customization questions
  • Delivery scheduling
  • Issues with a shipping address

The following messages are “not critical” to complete the order:

  • Requests for seller feedback or customer reviews
  • Order, shipment, or delivery confirmations
  • Proactive customer service (for example: product manuals, tips for using the product, FAQs, suggestions if something goes wrong)
  • Out-of-stock or delay notifications and offers of alternate products (please cancel the order instead)

Please don’t send messages to opted-out buyers for correspondence that isn’t critical to completing the order. Repeated violations of this policy may result in enforcement actions or loss of selling privileges.

Learn more about Buyer-Seller Messaging and what messages are considered critical to completing orders

 

Sincerely,
Amazon Seller Support

A few takeaways from this latest move by Amazon:

  • Like any other move, this is not the end of the world.  Amazon made this move to give a better experience to their customers.   Any customer should have the right to opt-out of emails if they want and although this may block the messages of people we send emails to, they didn’t want to receive them anyway.  They probably would not have responded or worse, could have responded with negative feedback.
  • Despite what is being said in the email, it appears that you will not be penalized for emailing someone who has opted out since you have no way of knowing who that person it.  However, one should take immediate action to not continue emailing someone once this has been disclosed to them
  • Currently, there is no way via Amazon Seller Central or API to retrieve a list of customers who have opted out.
  • Most email followup services have already provided measures to add these customers to a blacklist for no solicitations.
  • Customers cannot opt-out online, they have to contact Amazon Customer Service (as of the time we published this blog)

A few extra links of interest:
Article from Feedback Five
Article from Feedback Genius

 

Would love to hear your thoughts on this.  Leave a comment of discuss in the Facebook Group.

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