AF324 - How Negative Reviews Impact Your Amazon Listings

We're diving into a topic that's been a thorn in the side of many Amazon sellers - negative reviews. I recently had the pleasure of hosting Shane, a digital marketer and expert in negative review removal on Amazon listings.

In this episode of the Amazon Files podcast, Kristin Ostrander and guest Shane Barker, a specialist in negative review removal, discuss the impact of negative reviews on Amazon sellers. Shane shares his expertise on how to prevent and remove these reviews, emphasizing the importance of understanding Amazon's terms of service and providing clear evidence when presenting cases to Amazon. They also discuss the challenges of dealing with Amazon's constant policy changes and the importance of brand registry. Shane's company, TraceFuse, offers a service to help sellers manage negative reviews, with a special offer for podcast listeners.

The Impact of Negative Reviews on Amazon Listings

As an Amazon seller myself, I've grappled with the challenge of removing negative reviews. Shane, who has spent the last five years with his team, dissecting the intricacies of product reviews, shared some valuable insights on this issue.

Negative reviews can be a brand's worst nightmare, especially when they outnumber the positive ones. Shane's company was born out of the frustration of seeing clients being attacked through negative reviews. He emphasized the importance of staying educated and adapting to the constant changes on Amazon.

Personal Experiences with Negative Reviews

I shared my personal experience with a product that initially received positive reviews but was later marred by negative ones. Despite the effort and resources invested in developing the product, a single negative review can significantly impact sales and ranking on the platform.

Shane and I also discussed a case where a customer received a used and unsanitary product, leading to a one-star review with pictures. Despite providing evidence that it wasn't our fault, Amazon didn't take responsibility, and the negative review affected our sales and ranking.

The Solution to Negative Reviews

Shane's company has developed an AI-based software to help sellers manage negative reviews. They also have a manual process for cases that require a more personalized approach. Their goal is to assist sellers who are unfairly targeted with negative reviews, not to remove reviews for genuinely bad or toxic products.

The Strategy for Removing Negative Reviews

Shane explained their strategy for successfully removing negative reviews on Amazon. It starts with a thorough understanding of Amazon's terms of service. By identifying violations and providing proof, they can present strong cases to Amazon.

Understanding Amazon's Unpredictable Nature

As an Amazon educator for nine years, I can attest to Amazon's unpredictable nature. I describe it as playing logical dodgeball, where Amazon's right hand doesn't know what the left hand is doing. While selling on Amazon can be profitable, it comes with its fair share of frustrations and challenges.

The Importance of Brand Registry

Shane also emphasized the importance of brand registry in the review removal process. Having a registered brand with Amazon makes it easier to get reviews removed. It shows that the brand is legitimate and has taken the necessary steps to protect its intellectual property.

The Weight of Negative Reviews

Shane explained that they primarily focus on critical reviews, which include one, two, and three-star ratings. One-star reviews carry more weight than five-star reviews, and the same applies to two-star and three-star reviews.

The Importance of Positive Reviews

Just like losing weight requires both exercise and a healthy diet, achieving success on Amazon requires a combination of positive reviews and addressing critical reviews. Sellers need to focus on getting four and five-star reviews, as they are crucial for building a strong reputation.

The Issue of Non-Verified Purchase Reviews

We also touched on the issue of non-verified purchase reviews on Amazon. It is unfair for anyone to leave a review without actually purchasing the product. There should be stricter regulations in place to prevent such reviews.

Understanding Amazon's Perspective

As sellers, it's important to understand Amazon's perspective and how to effectively communicate with the platform. Focus on providing solutions and evidence when addressing issues with Amazon, rather than getting caught up in emotional responses.

The Pros and Cons of Being an Amazon Seller

Being an entrepreneur and working with Amazon comes with its pros and cons. It requires resilience and problem-solving skills. Challenges should be approached as solvable problems, focusing on finding solutions rather than dwelling on frustrations.

Special Offer from TraceFuse

Shane's company, TraceFuse, is offering a $500 discount for those who sign up for a demo to see how their services work. The demo includes a comprehensive dashboard where users can view removed reviews and other relevant information.

Even if you haven't encountered negative reviews yet, it's important to have resources like TraceFuse to turn to when the need arises. It's like having insurance for your car - you hope you never need it, but it's good to have it just in case.

In conclusion, negative reviews are a part of the Amazon selling journey, but they don't have to be a roadblock to your success. With the right strategies and resources, you can effectively manage and remove negative reviews, protecting your brand's reputation and boosting your sales.



"The easier we make it for them, the easier it is for us to get the answers that we want and need." - Kristin Ostrander


Negative Reviews and Their Impact (00:00:02)
Discussion on the impact of negative reviews on Amazon listings and the reasons behind customers leaving negative reviews.

White Hat Negative Review Removal Process (00:02:29)
Introduction to Shane and his team's 100% white hat negative review removal process and their experience in helping sellers remove negative reviews from their Amazon accounts.

Challenges and Successes in Review Removal (00:05:03)
Exploration of the challenges faced in removing negative reviews and the success achieved by Shane's company in educating sellers about the possibility of removing reviews in a compliant manner.

Negative Review Impact on Sales (00:08:30)
Discussion on how a negative review with pictures affected sales and pushed the product down the algorithm.

Competitor Attacks (00:10:21)
Talk about competitors giving one negative review to knock down a product launch.

Handling Negative Reviews (00:11:49)
Exploration of the difficulties and disheartening experiences when trying to prove that negative reviews are not the seller's fault.

Negative Review Removal Strategies (00:16:15)
Negative review removal strategies and the initial challenges faced in cracking the code.

Shane’s Experience (00:16:46)
Shane’s experience as an Amazon educator for nine years and the challenges of navigating Amazon's policies.

Amazon’s Terms of Service (00:17:01)
The importance of understanding Amazon's terms of service and using them as leverage when presenting cases to Amazon.

Filing Cases and Strategies for Review Removal (00:23:38)
Discussion about filing cases, evaluating different strategies, and determining the best department to respond to emails.

The Importance of Brand Registry for Review Removal (00:26:43)
Exploration of the benefits of having a registered brand with Amazon for easier review removal.

Definition of Negative Reviews and Weightage of Star Ratings (00:28:00)
Explanation of how critical reviews are targeted, the difference in weightage between one, two, and three-star ratings, and the impact of negative reviews on the overall rating.

The Importance of four and five star reviews (00:30:55)
Shane discusses the significance of having a high number of positive reviews and the impact of negative reviews on a product's reputation.

Concerns about non-verified purchase reviews (00:32:22)
Kristin raises the issue of non-verified purchase reviews and questions Amazon's fairness in allowing reviews from individuals who haven't purchased the product.

Preventing Negative Reviews (00:37:29)
Shane advises sellers to understand Amazon's requirements and provide detailed information to minimize the likelihood of receiving negative reviews.

Talking to Amazon (00:38:36)
Kristin discusses the importance of understanding how to communicate with Amazon effectively and providing evidence to support claims.

Being clear and concise (00:39:20)
Kristin and Shane emphasize the need to be brief and to the point when presenting evidence to Amazon, as they are unlikely to read lengthy paragraphs.

Navigating Amazon's policies (00:40:15)
Kristin and Shane share their experience of dealing with recurring issues caused by Amazon's bots and AI, and the need to resubmit evidence to prove compliance with policies.

Testimonials and Methodology (00:46:36)
Discussion about the website Tracefuse, including testimonials and information about their methodology.

Valuation and Working with the Audience (00:47:39)
Discussion about doing a valuation for potential clients and expressing excitement about working with the podcast audience.

Importance of Negative Review Removal (00:48:42)
Emphasizing the importance of having resources like Tracefuse for when negative reviews occur on Amazon and offering tips for preventing negative reviews.


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