You know that piece of paper that sits inside your Amazon boxes? Well, that is a product insert. Amazon product inserts are a form of printed marketing material that Amazon sellers include in their packages. Typically, it provides contact information, thank you messages, social links, or review requests. Product inserts are an excellent way for Amazon businesses to resonate with their customers even after the shipment has been fulfilled.
However, Amazon can be a stickler when it comes to product inserts. This article seeks to address all the questions regarding Amazon product inserts in 2022. In addition, it will cover the benefits of Amazon product inserts, Amazon’s insert card policy, and best practices. Before you get started with your product inserts, be sure to check out the DataHawk 2022 eCommerce Calendar. You can use it to keep track of the most important dates in 2022 to plan product inserts for.
What Are the Benefits of Amazon Product Inserts?
It may seem daunting to include Amazon product inserts in your orders: you have to put on your marketing hat to come up with a witty message, create the design, and print them, which will cost you time and money. Nevertheless, the effort is worth the reward. Adding a product insert to your Amazon orders has the following benefits:
- Increase brand reputation- When customers are satisfied with their purchase and the little message that comes with it, it can enhance their perception of the brand's reputation.
- Enhance brand awareness- You can also increase your brand awareness by adding supplementary information about your brand, such as social media handles.
- Cultivate customer loyalty- Product inserts are a way to offer customer service and simultaneously strengthen your relationship with the customer, which can grow customer loyalty in the long run.
- Promote additional products- Your product inserts can also work to restate the value of your product or promote other products from your Amazon storefront that customers may not have been aware of otherwise.
- Solicit feedback and review- Amazon product inserts are a direct way to request feedback and reviews. However, proceed with caution on how you word it. The following section will outline Amazon's insert card policy and what you need to know about soliciting feedback and reviews.
The right call to action (CTA) or instructions can offer a string of benefits. In addition to the points listed above, Amazon product inserts have the utmost potential to reduce the likelihood of customer returns and provide extra revenue streams. Nonetheless, Amazon has strict terms of service that you should know.
What Is Amazon’s Insert Card Policy?
Amazon's policies have tight restrictions on what you can do and how you can do them. While the list of benefits above is clear, violating Amazon's insert card guidelines for package inserts is a recipe for disaster. Below is a list of Amazon's insert card policies.
You Cannot Direct People to Contact You Over Leaving a Negative Review
Amazon seeks out an honest review if at all possible. If the customer service experience was poor, customer reviews should reflect that.
Requesting the customer to contact you if they have any problems might seem harmless, but it warps your product reviews. It leads to customers potentially gaining refunds or other incentives outside the standard process.
You Cannot Use Manipulative Language to Request Reviews
Requesting specific product reviews is a clear negative; however, Amazon also discourages manipulative language from requesting any review. For example, you could describe a bit of your brand story about how you are a "family-owned and operated" business.
But if you include that as part of some literature request for a review, Amazon will see you are tugging at their heartstrings. This writing encourages the customer to think about their "better nature" before tearing down an inferior product because of some emotional appeal.
You Cannot Provide Incentives for Reviews
Amazon makes it clear that you cannot provide any level of incentive for a review. These incentives include:
- Another free product
- Their next order free
- Gift cards
If you have ever received an offer to get a free bottle of the next thing for a review, it is a violation of Amazon's insert card policy.
You Cannot Suggest Moving Business From Amazon
It might be tempting for you to take a customer's business to another eCommerce platform via your Amazon product insert. However, Amazon sees it as a big no-no; this is the type of violation that will get your account suspended. Directing them to a store on any other platform is against Amazon's insert card policy.
Do Not Speak Poorly of Your Competition
Harmful statements about competition are a general code of conduct rule but do not use your insert to communicate poorly about your competition.
Your competition also sells on Amazon, and Amazon wants to be sure you make money solely on your merits. Speaking badly about competition is considered manipulative language. Plus, it does not usually work as a long-term strategy.
Amazon's Code of Conduct rules detail everything you can and cannot do as a seller. Therefore, be sure to familiarize yourself with them before considering any product packaging inserts.
Do Not Request Contact Information
Amazon prohibits you from "over-communication" on their platform. That means no harassing emails for reviews and no emails informing customers of new products if they are not following your brand.
You might believe you can request contact information to get around this, but that would be wrong. Amazon considers it poor customer service to send another mail to cut Amazon out of the communication.
While you can link to social media accounts, you cannot request contact info to include them in your email marketing campaign. However, you can request that information on social media away from Amazon.
You Cannot Request a Positive Review
Positive reviews are great, but requesting those reviews is one way to get your account flagged. While you can request reviews, you cannot request that those reviews be positive. The result is a warped perception of the quality of your product, discouraging honest reviews. The next section will discuss, in more detail, how to request reviews on Amazon product inserts.
How Should I Ask For Reviews on My Amazon Product Inserts?
Believe it or not, Amazon allows product inserts to request reviews. However, people's big mistake is forgetting to limit their requests to only asking for reviews, and sellers often mistake overdoing the product insert. Check out these tips to ensure you do not make the same mistake on these product cards.
Tip One: Do Not Include A Feedback Request With a Coupon
Many sellers think they can just put feedback requests and coupons on separate cards. They might believe that their discount code is different from the review request. However, Amazon is not likely to see eye-to-eye with that sentiment.
When you include the two in the same box, Amazon typically assumes one is for the other. The customer might also see the same situation, creating a problem where the customer believes you are incentivizing the review.
To avoid this situation, be sure to put feedback requests and coupons in separate inserts. So choose half of your boxes with feedback requests and the other half with coupon codes. What you choose will depend on your overall goal.
Tip Two: Do Include Feedback Requests With Instructions
Receiving negative feedback typically comes from a customer's lack of understanding. Not knowing how to use a product leads to a poor experience. Ergo, a bad review.
The package insert provides you with the opportunity to give instructions. You should write these instructions as though you are for fifth graders. The fewer questions customers have about your product, the better off you will be.
Including instructions with feedback, requests are also good with Amazon's insert card regulations. With the understanding of how to use a product and further instructions on how to leave behind feedback, both Amazon and the customer won't see you as pushy.
Tip Three: Avoid "If" Statements
Many people like to condition their reviews by focusing on positive experiences. In comparison, that might work with other companies, "if" statements are typically violations of Amazon's insert card policy. For example, "if you enjoyed our products, we would appreciate a review!"
The problem is related to you directly speaking to those who had a positive experience. This wording discourages negative reviews, leading to a more positive review rate through manipulative language.
Instead, replace it with "We hope you enjoyed our product. Please share your experience to let us know what you think." The previous statement is a pressure-free statement that bypasses any Amazon violations. There is, however, one other way to request a review.
Tip Four: Present Your Review Request Like a Set of Instructions
To avoid any infringements, present your review request as a set of instructions. Here is an example:
- Go to the "orders" tab of your Amazon account
- Click the "write a review" tab
- Give us your honest review
Providing instructions to write a review alongside instructions on using your product is considered low pressure. Be sure to avoid statements that encourage positive reviews. Everything has to be very bare, so using the term "honest review" appeals to Amazon's monitors.
Amazon Product Inserts 2022: Best Practices
Now that you are aware of everything you cannot do with Amazon product inserts, this section highlights what is recommended and considered best practices.
Choose A Marketing Priority
Your first step on choosing suitable packaging inserts comes back to priority. What do you want to accomplish?
- Do you want more reviews on another product?
- Are you looking for a higher number of reviews?
- Are you trying to address product confusion?
Whatever problems your customers are experiencing with your product, you can address them with product inserts. For example, if you have a common problem among the FAQs in your product listing, address that problem with future inserts to save you time—direct customers with specific sets of instructions.
If another one of your products is weak, consider using your strong product to supplement the weak one. By knowing your priority, your product inserts can have specific high-quality CTAs that increase conversion rates.
Create Something Creative and Engaging
Product inserts with instructions are great, but creating creative and engaging content demands you do not limit these inserts to instructions. Instead, take the opportunity to make multiple CTAs (provided they do not include both coupons and review requests)
For example, social media request follows are just fine. But saying "follow our social media" is pretty dull. Instead, think of another, more engaging way to request social media follows. Make sure it is on par with your brand, so think about what your customers want to hear.
The design should also be eye-popping. Attractive colors with high contrast draw the eye to the text. Just don't include any URLs, as the monitor will ping those.
List Satisfaction Guarantees and Warranties
A great way to affirm your value is to list satisfaction guarantees and warranty information upfront. This listing is a powerful affirmation of your product quality. It also reminds people that you understand that this product might not be best for them.
As a reminder, ensure that warranty information is not contingent on anything. You cannot change a review for an extension of the warranty. Instead, focus on the fact that Amazon already offers a 100% satisfaction guarantee. Thus, you are just restating something that Amazon already provides without over-promising something.
Include Gifts (But Do Not Incentivize Them)
Bonus gifts, like an extra battery or replacement piece, are great. To surprise your buyer with unique box inserts is something they appreciate. Double point to it is an accessory to the product included.
You might also send branded items like stickers, lanyards, or buttons. These items are typically less helpful and appreciated. Still, sending someone something in exchange for a bit of free advertising is a pretty good deal.
However, do not incentivize these gifts. If you send gifts, be sure to indicate that it is not contingent upon any activity. For example, you might include review requests and gifts in separate inserts to avoid this perception entirely.
Do Not Get Married To One Type of Box Insert
There are many potential strategies when selecting the correct box insert. For instance, one approach might work well for one product, while another method may work better for the other. So, it is up to you to run those tests to ascertain what works best.
To find out the details, start selecting a few different designs and copy choices for your CTAs. These can include various review requests, instruction booklets, and social media following calls.
Your goal is to set several different versions of the same requests. You can choose to divide these out by time or send them all out at once. Be sure you have a method of tracking what design choice works the best.
Include QR Codes
With the 21st century being the information age, QR codes are a must-have for product inserts. QR codes allow people direct links to any of the requests you make. These codes take the effort out of your customer's hands, increasing your potential conversion rate.
Remember, the basic code of conduct still applies with including QR codes. That means no incentivized reviews, no URLs, no encouraging people to buy off Amazon, and no pushy sales tactics. Instead, provide links to the review page, your coupon code, or your social media pages.
What Can I Put On My Amazon Product Inserts?
There is some speculation about Amazon's rules as they apply to Fulfilment by Amazon (FBA) sellers vs. non-FBA sellers. Those who handle their fulfillment might believe that the regulations regarding insert cards do not apply to them.
However, because these packaging insert rules come from Amazon's Code of Conduct, the rules do not change. So, for example, you cannot put anything you want on packaging inserts if you handle fulfillment.
While it is easier to hide (no Amazon employee will look at them), it is still a risky endeavor to try and circumvent Amazon's codes. Stretching the rules on package inserts is an active effort to undermine Amazon's insert card policy.
What Should I Avoid Putting on My Amazon Product Inserts?
Other than the apparent policy violations, there are many things you should avoid inserting into your package. Here are some examples:
The most effective product inserts have a simple CTA that can request anything from using a coupon code to requesting seller feedback. However, some companies like to include complicated jargon or detailed information packages. Most customers throw these out as they do not want to read a set of ridiculous instructions or company jargon.
Remember, your prospective customer probably does not care much about how it got there. That level of care might change if your product creation process is fascinating.
Expensive Business Cards
People who sell premium products on Amazon believe that this is an opportunity to show their success. However, having fancy paper and fancy business cards that remind people of your success is vapid, not appealing to the most discerning customer.
Be aware that having fancy paper for your card inserts will not help. It would be best to focus on your customer's needs to impress them over something fancy in the box.
A typical offering among even some big-name companies on Amazon is extended warranties in exchange for reviews. As discussed earlier, Amazon sees this as a violation of the TOS.
To believe that an extended warranty is not an incentive is wrong. For example, if you have a product warranty, you must include it regardless of what reviews you receive.
Your Contact Information
Amazon's TOS prevents you from encouraging people to contact you directly if there is any problem. Because Amazon's storefront represents your product, they like to handle it on your behalf. It also discourages negative feedback, leaving behind positive feedback solely.
Even if this TOS section was eliminated, including personal contact information will blow up your phone quickly. Some of that information might lead to problems ranging from prank calls to requests for additional incentives over giving you a one-star review.
Keep those communications to Seller Central. Better yet, let Amazon take care of the customer service process, especially if you are new to selling.
Be Careful with Statements of Urgency
Amazon generally discourages you from creating a sense of urgency towards customers. While it is a great way to persuade customers in many situations, it also leads to a pressured customer experience.
Amazon's detailed TOS dictates various requests that boil down to excellent customer experiences. Instead of saying "buy now, or you might miss out," Amazon wants you to focus on the qualities of the product.
Amazon does this themselves through prime sales. You know about this if you have ever seen the "want it tomorrow" screen under Prime offers. Having an overabundance of urgency will pressure your customer out of the purchase.
There is nothing precisely against packaging inserts with a sense of urgency, but be aware that Amazon can deny inserts based on their discretion.
Can I Use Amazon Product Inserts to Get Customers to Sign Up for My Email List?
Expensive Business Cards
People who sell premium products on Amazon believe that this is an opportunity to show how much success they have. However, having fancy paper and fancy business cards that remind people of your success is vapid, not appealing to the most discerning customer.
Be aware that having fancy paper for your card inserts won't help. It would be best to focus on your customer's needs to impress them over something fancy in the box.
Amazon product inserts are a terrific way to direct people to your social media, personal website, and encourage sales of alternative Amazon products. With an awareness of Amazon's insert card policy, you will run proper package inserts.
If you are looking for unique ways to increase sales of your Amazon products, take a look at DataHawk's Amazon business management software for retailers. Its powerful Amazon SEO and advertising analytics tools will help boost your products through all channels.
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