How to improve Amazon Account Health on Seller Central
It’s probably fair to say that this is every seller’s worst nightmare: you log into your Amazon account and, to your horror, discover that your product has either been removed or your account has been suspended (or both!).
On Amazon, there’s something called AHR or Account Health Rating which is a metric that demands urgent attention at all times. You’ll find it in your Account Health Dashboard along with the performance targets you need to hit to keep your AHR healthy.
In this in-depth and insightful article, we’re going to discuss what the Amazon Account Health Dashboard is, what it means to have an Account health “health rating” of 200, and more.
What is the Account Health Dashboard?
The account health dashboard gives you an overview of your adherence to Amazon’s various performance targets and policies. Compliance is displayed through the AHR metric to give you a chance to address any product defects or policy violations, which may adversely affect your ability to successfully sell on Amazon.
A score of 0-1000 in the account health dashboard lets you see how close you are to the current thresholds, which essentially means the AHR metric will either be green (great), yellow (at risk) or red (unhealthy).
So, if your AHR has a score of 200-1000 or shows green, that means you will not have to deal with the nasty surprise of seeing your account being deactivated. If your AHR ranges in yellow – essentially, an Account Health “health rating” of 200 or lower – then you are at risk of your account being deactivated.
When your AHR goes into red, which is a score of 99 or lower, then your account has either already been deactivated or is about to be deactivated.
Another thing worth noting about your Account Health Dashboard is that AHR is determined according to your business size by giving you points whenever a minimum number of orders have been successfully filled. All new sellers on Amazon start up with an Account health “health rating” of 200 –eventually getting a score which faithfully represents their account health based on adherence to Amazon’s policies and selling activities over a period of 180 days.
Every time Amazon detects policy violations on your Seller Account, you will lose points. Even if, despite your best efforts, you run into violations (listed on your Account Health Dashboard), then you will need to be very proactive about addressing them, prioritising the ones with the greatest severity (red).
How to keep your Account Health ‘health rating’ above 200
By now we have a basic understanding of what Account Health Rating (AHR) is. Let’s talk about the performance targets we need to focus on in order to keep your AHR well above 200.
Accurate product representation
Naturally, one of the first things you’d want to do is represent your product as accurately as possible. This includes providing clear, high quality images, descriptions, and other associated information.
If anyone buys your product based on information that is false or inaccurate, they’re going to leave a negative review and this will bring your AHR down one way or another.
Be quick with customer responses
Not only do buyers appreciate prompt responses but so does Amazon. If you can manage to respond to inquiries and complaints within a 24-window then that’s great, but do keep those responses as professional and informative as you can. Just do your best to resolve complaints and/or inquiries at the first possible opportunity. Some sellers have made it a habit to address these within 12 hours, in fact!
Additionally, you want to cut down the number of refunds, returns, and chargebacks as much as possible. If your customers are satisfied with their purchases, then you won’t have to deal with these issues or an Account health “health rating” of 200, for that matter.
Among our next performance targets: shipping products on time.
Getting your products out to your customers on time will certainly improve your AHR. Just make sure you deliver them to your customers within the promised timeframe. If you don’t meet the shipping deadlines, you may see your AHR sinking lower and lower with every late delivery.
A reliable shipping process coupled with an efficient inventory management system will help in keeping things moving smoothly.
Sell quality products only
Another performance target to focus on is the quality of your product. Selling quality products is a guaranteed way to boost your AHR. People today expect to buy the best-quality products over Amazon and if their expectations are not met, then their low satisfaction levels will have a negative impact on your AHR.
Just do a quality test to ensure that you’re selling the best quality possible before listing anything on Amazon. Study other similar products in your category, check their ratings and reviews – and try to exceed that level of quality.
Be familiar with Amazon’s latest policies
Amazon has specific policies in place which ensures that buyers get a safe, secure, and generally satisfactory online shopping experience. From product reviews to payment processing, these policies tend to cover a broad range of topics.
Always ensure that you are up to speed on the latest policies and keep them at the forefront when running and managing your Amazon Seller Account, and particularly, your Account Health Dashboard.
Strictly follow Amazon’s Seller Code of Conduct
The Seller Code of Conduct describes everything you must follow to ensure a safe experience not just for your customers but for yourself as well. Ensure that you strictly adhere to the following:
- Provide the most accurate information to not only your customers but also Amazon at all times
- Act fairly and intelligently, not misusing or manipulating any of Amazon’s features or services
- Never try to damage, hijack, or abuse another seller, their ratings or listings
- Never attempt to influence or coax your buyers’ ratings, reviews, and feedback
- Never engage in sending any inappropriate or unsolicited communications
- Not communicate with customers except through Amazon’s Buyer-Seller Messaging channel
- Never try to side-step around Amazon’s standard sale process
- Not operate multiple selling accounts without a legitimate personal or business need
If you want to read up on each one of these rules in more detail, then you can find them on Amazon’s Selling Policies and Seller Code of Conduct page.
Failure to comply with the above rules will not only bring your Amazon Account Health down but also put you at the risk of account and payments suspension, as well as listings cancellation or, in a worst-case scenario, even having your seller privileges revoked.
Keep an eye on specific Account Health metrics
Cancellation Rate (CR)
CR refers to the percentage of orders cancelled by you, which is measured across a 7-day period. If a buyer cancels their order then your CR will not be affected.
Amazon states that all sellers need to maintain a CR of under 2.5% – if it’s above that, you risk having your account deactivated.
On-Time Delivery Rate (OTDR)
OTDR refers to the shipments delivered to your buyers according to the estimated delivery date you committed to. It’s calculated based on the total number of tracked shipments, although the metric applies to seller-fulfilled orders only.
Amazon recommends keeping your OTDR above 97% to provide a satisfactory customer experience.
Order Defect Rate (ODR)
The ODR measures how well you are able to provide a satisfactory customer experience and includes defective orders as a percentage of your total orders over 60 days. An order is considered to be ‘defective’ if:
- Someone leaves negative feedback after buying from you
- There was a credit card chargeback
- A buyer wins an A-to-Z Claim against you
Sellers are required by Amazon to maintain an under 1% ODR in order to continue selling on Amazon without risking account deactivation.
Last Dispatch Rate (LDR)
LDR, a metric which applies to seller-fulfilled orders only, indicates the total number of orders that have had their shipping confirmation posted after the expected shipping date. It is represented as a percentage of your total number of orders within a 10-day and 30-day period.
You must confirm the order shipment by the expected shipping date, making it easy for your buyers to check their shipped orders’ status. If these orders are confirmed after the expected shipping date, you may have to deal with buyer claims, negative feedback, more contacts to resolve issues, and an overall poor customer experience.
Amazon wants sellers to maintain an LDR of under 4% or risk a warning, including an account deactivation.
Return Dissatisfaction Rate (RDR)
RDR measures whether your buyers are satisfied with the returns process, which is considered to be negative by Amazon if:
- You get negative feedback from a buyer
- You incorrectly or unfairly deny a return request
- You fail to respond to a return request in 48 hours
RDR is measured as a percentage of all negative return requests and Amazon suggests keeping this under 10%.
Final thoughts on AHR Performance Targets and more
Being familiar with Amazon Health Rating performance targets is vital to not only scaling the marketplace but also keeping your customers satisfied at all times and staying in Amazon’s good books.
Regular account health checkups is the best way to determine if you’re at risk of getting slammed with an Account Health “health rating” of 200 – in addition to being fully familiar with your Account Health Dashboard, of course.
Chris’s team of Amazon consultants are always on top of the latest guidelines and policies set by Amazon, helping sellers keep their Amazon Account Health in the ‘green’.