What You Need To Know About Amazon’s New Account Health Rating Program Policy
On the cusp of Q4 2022, Amazon announced new features to the Account Health page that are intended to provide more transparency into Amazon Seller’s account health status. The email from Amazon further stated:
“Our hope is that these features will give you peace of mind and allow you to spend more time growing your business and delighting customers and less time worrying about your account health and potential disruption to your business.”
These modifications are summarized in the new Account Health Rating Program Policy. To help you avoid the risk of an account deactivation during the most important selling season of the year, an Amazon Seller Lawyer at ESQgo® unpacks what these updates mean and how they impact your Amazon business.
What is the purpose of the Account Health page?
Before anything else, let us take a step back and understand what the Account Health page is for. The Account Health page provides an overview of a selling account’s adherence to the performance targets and policies required by Amazon. Compliance is measured and displayed in the form of an Account Health Rating (AHR) to give Amazon Sellers the opportunity to address any violations or defects that may affect their ability to sell.
What is new on the Account Health Dashboard?
The primary change to the Account Health Dashboard is the numerical AHR displayed in addition to the color coding. Previously, Amazon Sellers were only able to see the status of their account health as either green (Healthy), yellow (At Risk), or red (Unhealthy). There was no insight concerning how the rating is determined and what factors were considered.
With the current policy, a numeric score ranging from 0 to 1,000 is provided to enable Amazon Sellers to see how close they are to the various thresholds that move the AHR from green to yellow to red. If your AHR is green (“Healthy,” based on a score of 200-1,000), that means your account is not at risk of deactivation. If your AHR is yellow (“At Risk,” based on a score of 100-199), your account is at risk of deactivation. When your AHR is red (“Unhealthy,” based on a score of 99 or lower), your account is either eligible for deactivation or already deactivated.
AHR is also evaluated in the context of business size by granting points when a minimum number of orders are filled. All new Amazon Sellers start with a score of 200 and over time, will see a score that accurately reflects the account health based on policy adherence and selling activities over the last 180 days.
Amazon Sellers lose points when new policy violations associated with the selling account are detected. When you successfully address those violations, you gain points. Therefore, in order to obtain and maintain a “Healthy” account, our Amazon Seller Lawyer at ESQgo® encourages you to avoid policy violations and if they happen, to address all violations listed on your Account Health page in a timely manner, prioritizing those with the greatest severity.
How is AHR calculated?
Amazon calculates the AHR by assigning a certain number of points to each policy violation based on its severity. We discuss the four levels of severity below.
- Critical: These violations have serious and unacceptable impacts on customers or violate certain laws, regulations, or the rights of others. Any single violation with this severity immediately qualifies your account for deactivation. Examples include selling counterfeit or inauthentic products as determined via a test buy, soliciting product reviews or including non-compliant inserts, and attempting to damage or abuse another seller.
- High: Depending on the negative impact these violations have on customers or the degree to which they may also violate applicable laws or regulations, Amazon’s tolerance for high-severity violations is minimal. Examples include a valid notice of infringement from the rights owner and customer reports of infringing or counterfeit products.
- Medium: Violations of this severity may significantly undermine customer and selling partner trust if they continue to occur over time. Examples include diverting customers away from Amazon to circumvent the sales process and manipulating search results or sales rankings.
- Low: Amazon understands that mistakes happen while doing business, so they do tolerate infrequent low-severity violations such as customer reports about receiving products in the wrong condition and variation errors on the product detail page.
Severity is determined based on factors such as the degree to which the violation jeopardizes the customer experience, applicable laws and regulations, and the number of previous violations for that same policy. That means that point values associated with violations increase each time that policy is violated. As such, repeat violations will cause AHR to degrade faster, with higher severity repeat violations having the most impact.
Amazon also set a maximum number of repeat violations for different policies within a 180-day period. If you reach or exceed this threshold, your account may be deactivated immediately regardless of your AHR. In most cases, the maximum number of repeat violations is five for infringement-related policies and two for restricted product policies.
Why is my amazon seller account deactivated?
Amazon is very particular about maintaining the quality of its marketplace and has a strict set of guidelines and policies that all sellers must adhere to. If a seller violates any of these policies, Amazon may take action against the seller, including deactivating their account. Here are some of the most common reasons why Amazon may deactivate a seller account.
Violations of Amazon’s policies and guidelines
Amazon has a set of policies and guidelines that all sellers must follow to ensure a level playing field for all sellers. These policies cover everything from product listings to customer service and shipping. If a seller violates any of these policies, Amazon may take action against the seller, including deactivating their account.
Some common policy violations include listing prohibited products, providing inaccurate information about products, using fake or misleading reviews, and engaging in price gouging. Amazon takes these violations seriously and will not hesitate to deactivate a seller account if they are found to be in violation of any of these policies.
Poor performance metrics
Amazon holds its sellers to a high standard when it comes to performance metrics. If a seller consistently fails to meet Amazon’s performance standards, their account may be deactivated. Some of the key performance metrics that Amazon monitors include order defect rate, cancellation rate, and late shipment rate.
If a seller’s order defect rate is too high, it means that they are receiving a lot of negative feedback from customers, which can lead to a decrease in sales and ultimately, account deactivation. Similarly, if a seller’s cancellation rate or late shipment rate is too high, it can lead to a decrease in customer satisfaction and ultimately, account deactivation.
Selling counterfeit or prohibited products
Amazon has a strict policy against the sale of counterfeit or prohibited products on its marketplace. If a seller is found to be selling counterfeit or prohibited products, their account may be deactivated immediately. This is because Amazon takes the issue of counterfeiting very seriously and wants to maintain the trust of its customers.
Sellers who are found to be selling counterfeit or prohibited products may also face legal action from the brand owners whose products they are infringing upon. This can lead to significant financial and legal consequences for the seller.
Infringement of intellectual property rights
Amazon takes the issue of intellectual property rights very seriously and has a strict policy against the infringement of these rights. If a seller is found to be infringing upon the intellectual property rights of others, their account may be deactivated immediately.
Infringement of intellectual property rights can include selling counterfeit products, using copyrighted images or text without permission, or using trademarks without authorization. Sellers who are found to be infringing upon the intellectual property rights of others may also face legal action from the brand owners whose rights they are infringing upon.
Multiple seller accounts
Amazon only allows sellers to have one account on its marketplace. If a seller is found to have multiple accounts, their accounts may be deactivated immediately. This is because having multiple accounts can lead to unfair competition and can compromise the integrity of the marketplace.
Having multiple accounts can also lead to confusion among customers and can make it difficult for sellers to maintain consistent branding and customer service across their accounts.
Speak With An Amazon Seller Lawyer at ESQgo®
If you need help addressing open issues that impact your AHR or want assistance with a deactivated seller account, an Amazon Seller Lawyer at ESQgo® is here to help get your selling privileges back. Contact us today by calling 888-600-1925 or via our contact page. We offer a free initial one-hour consultation.