As a new seller on Amazon, it’s not always easy to gain momentum and start selling products. Generally, customers look at your images, product description, and reviews before making a purchase decision. But if a seller does not have many reviews on their products, they must first focus on receiving quality reviews—which is where the Amazon Vine Program comes in.
The Amazon Vine Program helps sellers gain reviews from top buyers that shop on the world’s leading eCommerce marketplace. But why does this matter? Receiving reviews, especially as a new seller, is helpful in several ways:
- The more reviews a product has, the more likely it will continue to sell on Amazon.
- Products with the highest ratings rank higher on search result pages, influencing the number of sales a brand makes.
- Negative or fake reviews will not have as much of an impact on product sales when most of your feedback comes from genuine buyers.
For these reasons, this program is beneficial for establishing your brand and making sales on Amazon. However, you must achieve a few milestones before applying to the program as a buyer or seller. Here is everything that you should know about this opportunity and how you can leverage the Vine Program to grow your Amazon business.
Before learning all about the Amazon Vine Program, make sure that you download Sunken Stone’s Ultimate Amazon Playbook. It is an excellent resource for businesses that are looking to expand their sales opportunities online. You will discover tips and tricks from Amazon sellers with years of experience to grow your business and generate more revenue, so download it today!
Now, let us discuss the Amazon Vine Program!
What Is Amazon Vine?
In the past, sellers could give away products for free or at a discount to receive product reviews. However, a review policy change in 2016 stops sellers from exchanging products for reviews since it gamed the system. At the time, sellers were receiving too many incentivized reviews that did not accurately describe how consumers feel about products they had received.
To fill the need for sellers to receive their first few reviews on new products, Amazon developed the Amazon Vine Program. Vine helps sellers receive unbiased reviews by giving away promotional products to top Amazon reviewers. These reviewers go by the name “Vine Voices” and must give honest feedback about the products they receive from the program.
Important Details To Note
Sellers that enroll in the program will receive product review requests from Vine Voices. If you accept the request, you will ship your product to the reviewer at no cost and receive a review in exchange.
Although you might assume that a reviewer will love the products you send, that’s not always the case. Top reviewers on Amazon write about hundreds, if not thousands, of products. Thus, reviewers are thorough while describing how they feel about a brand’s products, and they typically also include several product images.
Amazon expects product reviews from Vine Voices to be honest and unbiased. Therefore, they’ll share negative thoughts with the buying community without hesitancy if they find a defect or have trouble using your products.
While reviews are helpful to buyers, they can also be damaging to a seller’s reputation. If reviewers rate your product poorly and you do not have many positive reviews, customers will hesitate to buy your products. For this reason, enrolling in the Amazon Vine Program is a risk.
But, as the saying goes, “No risk, no reward.” An exceptional Vine Voice review can differentiate between selling thousands of units or going unnoticed on the United States’ leading eCommerce marketplace.
The Two Aspects Of Amazon Vine
Now that you understand the Amazon Vine Program and why you should consider joining, it is essential to know two aspects of this program. Top reviewers receive an exclusive Amazon Vine invite to join the program. On the other hand, Sellers can complete the Amazon Vine Program sign-up process to start receiving reviews for their products.
Why Should Vendors And Sellers Join?
So, why join the Amazon Vine Program as a seller? It’s simple. Vine makes it easier to receive quality feedback on the products your brand sells on Amazon.
In some cases, buyers can leave feedback on products even without purchasing an item first. However, Amazon tags review with text like “Verified Purchase” or “Vine Voices”. Amazon buyers know to look for these tags because they suggest that a review is unbiased.
Additionally, as you receive more product reviews, your products will appear higher within product searches. It is a great program to boost your Amazon SEO score, increase awareness for brand products, and grow sales.
Why Do Reviewers Care About This Opportunity?
Now, at this point, you may wonder how to become a Vine reviewer. Amazon invites people to the Vine Voices program who have written great reviews that customers enjoy. Although there are no set criteria for becoming a Vine Voice, we know that top reviewers are regularly added to the program.
Vine Reviewers enjoy sharing their thoughts on new products, receiving free items, and writing helpful reviews. However, it’s unknown how to become a Vine Reviewer, other than writing reviews often for this significant online marketplace. But the program seemingly a lot more beneficial to sellers, and the criteria are more transparent so that we will focus on sellers for the remaining sections.
What Are The Enrollment Requirements?
Seeing how the Vine Program helps Amazon sellers receive their first product reviews, not every business needs to enroll. Here are the criteria you should meet if you’d like to send your products to Vine Voices:
- Only Brands That Have Been Accepted Into The Amazon Brand Registry Program May Participate.
- The Products You Include In The Program Must Have Fewer Than 30 Reviews.
- Your Products Must Be In New Condition.
- Each Product Must Have A Complete Description, At Least One Image, And A Product Page.
- Your Product Must Already Exist When You Enroll In The Program. You Cannot Offer Pre-Launch Products To Reviewers.
In addition to these requirements, there are also several product restrictions. These rules protect reviewers from sellers who are trying to game the system. As a brand participating in the Vine Program, you cannot:
- Bundle Multiple Products To Try And Receive Multiple Reviews.
- Send An Item That Requires A Reviewer To Purchase Another Separate Product To Conduct Their Review.
- Send Reviewers Items Other Than The Vine Product They’ve Requested.
What Can You Expect From Your Vine Customer Review Of Free Product?
As a brand that’s participating in the program, you should expect unbiased reviews of your products. These reviews will likely include both pros and cons to your items from reviewers who have experience with similar products to yours.
How To Enroll Your Products In Amazon Vine
So, you have a brand on Amazon. Now’s your opportunity to receive your first product reviews. Follow these steps to begin:
- Visit The Seller Central Dashboard.
- Hover Over The Advertising Tab.
- Click Vine To Navigate To Your Vine Dashboard.
- Enter ASINs You Want To Enroll In The Program.
That’s how simple it is to add products to the Amazon Vine Program! However, some sellers haven’t been able to add products to Vine using this method. In this case, go back to your Seller Central dashboard and click on settings.
Next, click the User Permissions link, scroll down to Advertising, and click on the Vine Program permission box. Now you can use the instructions above for enrolling your products into the program. Congrats, you’ve just learned everything you need to know about this incredible opportunity.
Now that you know how to register and use the Amazon Vine Program, what’s next? If you’re looking to expand your brand on Amazon, Sunken Stone can help!
Start by downloading our newest guide, The Ultimate Amazon Playbook. It discusses several tips from successful sellers on how to grow your business using the leading eCommerce marketplace. Download it now.
Frequently Asked Questions
Amazon Vine is accessible for both buyers and sellers. However, as a seller, you must factor in the price of producing and shipping items to customers. Since you can receive up to thirty Vine Voice reviews, you can expect to send around thirty articles for the maximum effect.
There aren’t many cons to the program, other than the cost of giving away products for free. There’s also the risk that you receive negative reviews for your products, which could reduce your profitability. If your brand is new, you may want to consider which products you promote first. Start by adding products to the program that you believe will be your best-sellers.
There is a limit of five products in the Vine Program at one time. After receiving enough reviews on one product, you can turn off the Vine Program for that item and add a new product for reviewers to request.
Back in 2020, Amazon suspended Vine enrollments. In 2021, they stopped the Early Reviewer Program, other ways to encourage shoppers to leave reviews on products. However, there are several ways that you can receive product reviews. Try Amazon Posts, package inserts, or 3rd-party review sites.