Reviews play a huge role in shoppers’ purchasing decisions. Since items viewed online cannot be inspected in person, consumers must rely on reviews written by verified buyers to learn what they can expect from a product. Half of Amazon customers report that positive product reviews are one of their main considerations for their purchasing decision, and almost 90 percent of Amazon customers indicated they would not consider purchasing a product with less than 3 stars.
Additionally, customer reviews can indirectly improve your sponsored ad campaigns. Positive reviews tend to increase velocity, and products with higher velocity are more likely to win the auction for Sponsored Product placement.
No matter how you look at them, customer reviews are an essential part of your Amazon strategy’s success.
The tricky part is getting organic reviews for a new product. Only 5-10 percent of customers leave reviews, and even that percentage might be overly generous. Amazon’s Early Review Program was introduced to help sellers gain customer reviews for newer products.
What is the Early Reviewer Program?
The Early Reviewer Program is an Amazon-run initiative that can generate up to five new reviews on a selected product. Amazon randomly contacts verified buyers of an enrolled product and offers the customer an incentive to leave a review within the specified offer period. Amazon offers the buyer a small Amazon account credit (typically $1-$3) that can be used on future Amazon purchases.
To qualify for the program, products must have a price point of at least $15 and fewer than five reviews. The product can remain in the program up to one year or until it receives five new reviews, whichever comes first.
Amazon charges $60 per ASIN enrolled in the program. If you’re interested in enrolling in the program, reach out through our contact form or contact your Kaspien account manager.
Why did Amazon Introduce This Program?
Not so many years ago, Amazon reviews were the wild west. Amazon didn’t have policies in place to ensure reviews were only left by verified buyers, leading to many fake reviews as brands exchanged discounts for positive reviews. As a result, many shoppers came to distrust customer reviews on Amazon.
Near the end of 2016, Amazon was faced with the fact that consumers’ distrust of product reviews decreased sales. In response, Amazon banned all incentivized reviews and took it upon themselves to provide an alternative way for brands to generate new reviews: The Early Reviewer Program.
Unlike its predecessor, the Early Reviewer Program does not require customers to leave positive feedback, and it is limited to new products that need help generating traction.
While there is no guarantee that all reviews will be positive, we’ve seen an average 4.8/5 star rating for products we’ve enrolled in the program. To increase the likelihood of positive reviews, we strongly recommend making your listings informative. By presenting clear, compelling information on the front end, you can set accurate expectations, so those who purchase are more likely to be satisfied with their product.
If you need help writing listing content, you can work with Kaspien’s SEO team and copywriters. If you’re a partner, reach out to your account manager. If you’re not a current partner, you can hire our experts on a contract basis through our in-house Creative & Digital Services agency, 66 Knots.
Should I Enroll in the Early Reviewer Program?
If you are launching products on Amazon, you should strongly consider enrolling in the Early Reviewer Program. It’s not the end-all solution for improving velocity and sales, but it can kickstart them and get your product moving.
While reviews play a key role in your listings’ success, they’re only a piece of the puzzle. Kaspien is dedicated to helping you build out full product listings to increase traffic, search placement, and other factors that grow sales. Start the conversation with Kaspien today.
More Free Resources
- Blog – Writing for the Amazon Algorithm
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