AuctionBytes Blog
Covering auctions, collectibles and marketplace selling.

AuctionBytes Blog The AuctionBytes Blog has been giving a voice to online merchants since its launch in 2005. Named one of the world's top 30 blogs in 2008 by "Blogging Heroes." Weigh in with your thoughts on the joys and pitfalls of selling online.
Tue Oct 1 2019 20:54:15

Sellers Should Be Grateful to Amazon

By: Ina Steiner

Sponsored Link

The Washington Post ran a piece today that described a desperate seller who was unable to reach Amazon customer support after his account was hacked. According to the article, negative reviews of his service accumulated, decimating his business. "One thing he hadn't done was pay as much as $5,000 a month for a program Amazon offers sellers as a way to get quick help from a real person."

The Washington Post said the seller's business was ruined as a result, but another seller who had ponied up the $5,000/month for special treatment avoided ruin when his business encountered problems.

An Amazon spokesperson "declined to comment on individual sellers' experiences" and told the Post it handled over 40 million contacts from sellers last year, "and that 80 percent of their issues were resolved within 24 hours." But the spokesperson failed to convincingly address the implication that Amazon is letting some sellers down unless they pay extra for customer service.

In defending the company, the spokesperson told the newspaper that Amazon invests billions of dollars in digital tools and physical infrastructure to help sellers thrive. "Amazon only succeeds when sellers succeed and any claims to the contrary are simply wrong," Evans said. "Sellers have full control of their business and make the decisions that are best from them, including the products they choose to sell, pricing, and how they choose to fulfill orders."

Those "billions of dollars" include global investments, presumably places like India where Amazon is trying to grow its foothold. 

From last month's press release where Amazon ballyhooed the billions of dollars in investment:

"Amazon spends billions of dollars every year to help small and medium-sized businesses around the globe succeed in Amazon's stores. In addition to infrastructure, personnel, tools, and services, investments go towards programs such as Amazon Storefronts, Amazon Handmade, Amazon Launchpad, Amazon Business, Fulfillment by Amazon, Amazon Global Selling, Merch by Amazon, and Amazon Lending, which help small businesses grow."

The presumption is that sellers should be ever so grateful to Amazon - but note that Amazon charges sellers fees for each and every one of those programs, including Amazon Lending.

Sellers appreciate platforms like Amazon that help them grow, but it's a two-way street - Amazon also benefits from its army of third-party merchants through greater product selection and increased revenue. Where do you find it falls in terms of customer service compared to other venues on which you sell?



Comments (12) | Permalink

Readers Comments

Perminate Link for Sellers Should Be Grateful to Amazon   Sellers Should Be Grateful to Amazon

by: grumpwell This user has validated their user name.

Tue Oct 1 22:31:35 2019

"Sellers have full control of their business and make the decisions that are best from them, including the products they choose to sell, pricing, and how they choose to fulfill orders."  What a load of BS. The gatekeepers determine what we can sell. To claim otherwise is a bold faced lie.  

Perminate Link for Sellers Should Be Grateful to Amazon   Sellers Should Be Grateful to Amazon

by: lessthanthreerecords This user has validated their user name.

Wed Oct 2 00:50:30 2019

$5000 a month for customer service?!  And Amazon has the nerve to say that they help small and medium sized businesses?!  What does your monthly net income need to be before you would even consider paying $5000 a month for anything, much less customer service, which should be included in Amazon's already exorbitant seller fees?  I would imagine I would need to be making $25000 monthly at the absolute MINIMUM to consider paying $5000 monthly for ANY service.  That's not a small business, if you ask me.  Although I know that politicians generally consider businesses in the lower MILLIONS to be small (must be nice to be so privileged that you think millionaires are "small").  So, to answer the question posed in the article, Amazon seems to be among the worst places to sell.  I stopped selling with them years ago, and it appears they have only gotten worse since.  To put that into perspective, I still sell on eBay.  So, for Amazon to be a worse place to sell than eBay, that's saying something!

Perminate Link for Sellers Should Be Grateful to Amazon   Sellers Should Be Grateful to Amazon

by: mcposty This user has validated their user name.

Wed Oct 2 02:17:01 2019

no..amazon should be grateful that 50 percent of their sales is from indy sellers and STOP trying to ruin their bisiness everyday by bending a knee to corporations.

amazon is horrible to selkers and needs to be heavily regulated and investigated

Perminate Link for Sellers Should Be Grateful to Amazon   Sellers Should Be Grateful to Amazon

This user has validated their user name. by: RKTOYS

Wed Oct 2 15:05:32 2019

@grumpwell Agreed, total BS on Amazon's part.

When I was on Amazon, I had even less control than on eBay.  No control over my listings, no control over shipping settings, no control over refunds/returns, no control over being locked out every November to January.  Amazon is staffed by robots and treats sellers like robots too.

Perminate Link for Sellers Should Be Grateful to Amazon   Sellers Should Be Grateful to Amazon

by: purpleiris This user has validated their user name.
Web Site

Wed Oct 2 17:02:48 2019

Well, I've never sold on Amazon or eBay and the very reason for that is they way they do business and treat sellers. So to claim they're helping small businesses grow is laughable because I won't sell there knowing what small businesses really mean to them.

Perminate Link for Sellers Should Be Grateful to Amazon   Sellers Should Be Grateful to Amazon

by: Moonwishes This user has validated their user name.
Web Site

Thu Oct 3 01:45:01 2019

I sell on Amazon as well as eCRATER. The difference between the two is like night and day. I sell on Amazon because I can make more money there but I really hate it when I have a problem and get spun around in circles trying to find the right page that the solution will present itself. And generally what I am trying to find help on are for things that doesn't have a page. On eCRATER, I can write to the team and get a non-canned emailed answer back within the day or the next. One letter will do it while on Amazon to fix a problem can take up to 3 or more emails to the case managers all claiming to understand my problem and then rephrasing it and I know that these folks haven't got a clue what my problem is. So you send in another request, lather, rinse, repeat. Some simple things will be in a queue to self-destruct I assume in several months time as all you get is a reminder every three days telling you that they are working on it. How much work can it take to turn a sideways photo to an upright one?

Perminate Link for Sellers Should Be Grateful to Amazon   Sellers Should Be Grateful to Amazon

by: marty This user has validated their user name.

Thu Oct 3 06:15:50 2019

LOL, WP publishes a negative piece about its owner? What kind of a trick had Bezos pulling here?  

Perminate Link for Sellers Should Be Grateful to Amazon   Sellers Should Be Grateful to Amazon

by: hawk This user has validated their user name.

Thu Oct 3 07:16:58 2019

to pay extortion fees to anyone for anything is so corrupt it stinks. amazon just has the money to pay off anyone they need to , to continue being corrupt. that is the real world.

Perminate Link for Sellers Should Be Grateful to Amazon   Sellers Should Be Grateful to Amazon

by: BlueSky This user has validated their user name.

Thu Oct 3 13:29:20 2019

Amazon is on my sanctions list of companies I don't buy from nor use. Perhaps you should do that too.

Perminate Link for Sellers Should Be Grateful to Amazon   Sellers Should Be Grateful to Amazon

This user has validated their user name. by: The End

Thu Oct 3 16:13:21 2019

Ya, like we should be grateful a house has floors.
Stop the nonsense.

Perminate Link for Sellers Should Be Grateful to Amazon   Sellers Should Be Grateful to Amazon

by: flybuy This user has validated their user name.

Fri Oct 4 05:12:21 2019

I do not buy on Amazon anymore. It is not a good place for vintage and i get better deals on Walmart for household items without a membership. People laugh at Walmart but the store they opened in my community has been a big help creating jobs and a reasonably priced shopping option for people who have very little money and no car. Also they are carrying some upscale items and working on improving the layout and appearance. Amazon has a lot of junk and when I do a.search I want to see those items only and not junk made by manufacturers i never heard of.

Perminate Link for Sellers Should Be Grateful to Amazon   Sellers Should Be Grateful to Amazon

by: crackerjack This user has validated their user name.

Tue Oct 8 16:55:53 2019

"Amazon is staffed by robots and treats sellers like robots too" - good comment!

Yes, often it is very black and white and sometimes in business you need common sense and a bit of grey!

I am surprised that a seller paying $5000 per month did not get the help they needed after having their account hacked. That is not good, not good at all.



Login is required to post comments.
To sign in to leave a comment using your AB Verify User Name, fill in the form below. If you have not yet signed up for AB Verify, or if you'd like more information, go to the Registration Page
.

Login for AB Verify
Be sure and use your email address and password to log in.

 
Email:
Password:
 
 Forgot Your Password?
 Even though you are signed in with the AuctionBytes Blog, you will have to sign in to the EcommerceBytes blog. But you can sign in with your existing AB Verify info.