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Friday, September 30, 2016

How To Review On Amazon And Get Things Free Or Discounted

Update: Ironically not one day after I posted this article Amazon came out with new rules for reviewers. At this time I am still not certain of how the new rules affect reviewers. It may be best until I can update with a valid interpretation of these new rules to hold off starting your Amazon reviewer path. 

I am often asked about being an Amazon reviewer. How I got started, where I find product to review, and many other good questions.

I know when I first started I stumbled upon the whole process because of my blogging. The issue for most however is that they do not have a blog, so knowing where to begin is a challenge. 

I have found that those who do know how to do it can be very tight lipped, as if they are protecting some deep secret! That does not seem fair! There are plenty of products, and sellers on Amazon looking for great new reviewers! 

This article is set forth as an intention to help out the beginner, and possibly give some new information to those who are already reviewing on Amazon. 

Free or Discounted Down Coat For Amazon Review
I received this down coat free or discounted on Amazon for my review. RTV 99.90 

So let's begin:

1. Always follow Amazon's review guidelines which can change so keep updated regularly.

2. Having an Amazon Prime account is invaluable if you want to do Amazon reviews. Some of the websites offering free and discounted items will only accept you if you have Amazon Prime. Some will accept you even if you do not, however you end up paying the shipping on the items and that makes it really not worth it for you. Watch for deals on Amazon Prime, or if you have a college student you can get Amazon Prime at a discount - providing your student is not already using it.

3. Go back and do reviews on all of your previous purchases. The more reviews you have under your belt the more seriously you will be considered for free / discounted items. It may take some time, especially if you buy a lot on Amazon but it is worth it.

4. While leaving reviews, the longer the better. Some review sites grade your reviews. 250 words is premium. Think of using a pro and con list in reviews. To gain more wordage use the full name of the item as titled in the listing somewhere in your review. This also helps the seller with SEO keywords and sellers love that.

5. Use to check your word count.

How To Review On Amazon
Dress, Clutch Purse, and Bracelet all from Amazon Reviews, free or discounted. 

6. Never be lured in by other reviewers asking you to mark their reviews as "Helpful". This can actually hurt you as a reviewer. After you mark up another reviewer too many times you become a "fan" and while I do not understand the way it works entirely I know of reviewers who have been banned for doing this. It is fine to honestly vote up a review if you are actually buying the item and honestly find the review helpful but many reviewers will ask for up votes and it is a dangerous game to get involved in. Do not ask other reviewers to do this for you.

7. Be honest in your reviews. Sure the sellers want a 5 star or at the least a 4 star but if you truly find an item horrible, take these steps. First contact the seller if possible - usually you will have an email address provided via the seller themselves if they personally reached out to you OR via the site you received the product from. Let them know you did not like their product. They may send you a replacement or ask you to review anyway even if that means a one or two star review. OR they may ask you not to review. It is totally up to you if you leave a review then or not because they can't keep you from leaving one. You have to use your judgement. If you have received items from the same seller before and their items are usually good you may decide not to review the bad item. If you have not worked with them before and feel no reason to stay in touch with an otherwise good seller you may want to go ahead and leave a negative review. No one wants to burn bridges with an otherwise good seller with good products, however we also have to be true to ourselves and potential buyers by being honest when something is bad. I have done it both ways before and it is always a judgement call but take time and consider all angles before going at someone's throat for a crappy product. 

Also, and this is important, Amazon can ban your account entirely from reviewing if they feel you are being dishonest in reviews, or not reviewing an item for unscrupulous reasons. Out of my 933 total reviews (at this time) I have only not reviewed about 10 total items.

8. Be sure not to overload yourself! It can be VERY addicting but sellers want their reviews up within around 10 days or less generally. Some want them faster, some are more laid back but if you ask for too many items you will get behind and upset sellers. This may mean not getting items from them in the future. Granted sellers can not demand reviews be done within any time frame but we also need to be aware that it is only considerate to get your reviews up in a reasonable time frame for these sellers. 

How To Review On Amazon
This Checkered and Floral Dress OMG! Free or Discounted For My Review On Amazon! Yay! 

9. So what can you really get? Well be prepared to start out by reviewing a lot of the same type of items over and over a few times for awhile. I have personally reviewed so many cell phone charger cords, covers, and small items to work my way up to bigger and better things. The more reviews under your belt the more likely to be selected for the really good stuff. Recently I have stocked my entire home with Bamboo pillows which we love. I have received nice electronics, great fashions, purses, you name it! Those cell phone chargers and covers come in handy too when upgrading to a new phone which I recently did! I have not had to buy any covers, screen protectors, chargers, etc. Even the little things come in handy and save money!

10.  Get your Amazon profile set up! Go to your account, scroll down almost to the bottom of the page and find Personalization then to the right find Your Public Profile. Click on that and then EDIT - put in your profile any information about who you are, what you like, what you are interested in, etc, and don't forget a photo of yourself. The more a seller knows about you, the better chance you have of sellers contacting you directly to review for them! BE sure you put your email address in there so they can contact you. This is my public profile

11. Never, ever resell items you receive for free, especially on Amazon! You can gift them, keep them, or donate them, but from what I understand reselling at all is a big no-no. I have no idea honestly if one could sell in a garage sell later down the road, but I do know that if you were to re-list the items on Amazon your reviewer account can get banned, and that includes things you buy yourself! 

12. If a seller contacts you and asks you to review an item, then asks for you to purchase with your own money and send them your paypal email so they can reimburse you ... SAY NO! This is against seller Terms of Service on Amazon and you and the seller can have your accounts banned for this. 

How To Review On Amazon
I got this great clothing steamer free or discounted for my review! I need it with all the clothing I receive! 

It is never worth it, even starting out when you are itching to get free stuff, and do more reviews, to risk your account over things like this. Some new sellers are totally unaware this is against the rules and some do know but request it anyway. Just stay out of this dangerous game. 

13. On that note some sellers will request you go to the item they want to send you free or at a discount and ask a question on the item. This is again against Amazon Terms of Service for the seller to ask you to do this, and for you to do it for them. Sure if you are buying an item out of your own pocket 100% and have an honest question on an item you have every right to ask questions, but as a reviewer you are under different rules for items you get for the sole purpose of reviewing, which means you got it free or discounted! 

14. From what I understand it is perfectly okay to respond to questions on items you received for free or at discount to review as long as your reply is honest. 
15. Use judgement in what you agree to receive and review. Better to reject an item that you question the quality of from sight than receiving and it being horrible. 

How To Review On Amazon
I know, as if I need more tea cups, but how could I NOT? It's too cute! Free or discounted for review on Amazon! 

16. Do not let sellers dictate how you review, when you review, how fast, how many words, video / photos, etc this is against Amazon Terms of Service as well. In fact you are under absolutely no obligation to leave a review at all if you do not want to however you also risk not being offered items from that seller in the future and is just bad karma.  

17. Take good photos, in good lighting, showcase the item, and if you are wearing fashion, smile. While yes it is about the item, not you, I find sellers love seeing personality put into their fashion items. If not fashion, try some staging when you have time, a picnic basket in use looks much nicer than one sitting on your floor. 

18. Just as you may notice that I include a disclosure when I review items on my blog, you are also required to include a disclosure on your Amazon reviews when you receive an item free or discounted for your review. It can be as simple as this:

"I received this item free or discounted for my review".

19. Two places to get started finding deals to review are listed below. While you may not necessarily find many free items here this is a starting point with some excellent deals! Once you start becoming a reviewer sellers will reach out directly to you as long as you have an email address on your profile! 

Amz Review Trader - If you are in the UK click here. Remember I am not the end all be all expert, and what I have shared with you is from my own experience only. Things change often - stay up to date on your own by reviewing the Amazon reviewers guidelines often, and visiting the help section. 

I do hope this article was helpful to you! Please feel free to ask questions, or comment, or share your experiences below in the comments section. I love hearing from YOU! 

I love comments! Please join in discussion, ask questions, or leave tips for other readers. Comments truly are the driving force behind any blog as it helps the blogger to know what you, the reader want to see more of!

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