One of the most underutilized tools to increase customer interaction and help develop your brand’s tribe is a package insert. These small, little pieces of card stock are humble little creatures yet deliver a powerful punch for your business. It’s an often ignored marketing tool that pays dividends if used the right way.
By “right way” I mean does it line up with Amazon terms of service. It’s critical that you ask yourself if you are breaking any of Amazon’s rules. We will dive into this topic today and cover best practices for your business.
Inserts offer any seller on Amazon a powerful way to interact with their customers as Amazon continues to clamp down on what customer data sellers have access to. It’s very literally one of the last remaining ways to stay in touch wit your customers and communicate directly.
Inserts have many purposes but the overarching power behind them is customer interaction with your brand. Any time you can develop an off-Amazon relationship, you should DO IT and never look back.
Social media interaction is KING. Every brand owner on Amazon should have a strong social media presence tied to their Shopify store. Encouraging customers to post your product in real life situations can drive traffic to your store and increase sales. People LOVE showing off their products to their friends on Facebook/Instagram. Asking them to do just that on an insert is a no-brainer.
Asking for an unbiased review! Is it scary? Yes. But it’s monumental that you take any opportunity you can to ask this question. Assuming you are selling a premium, high quality product, you should never be scared about asking for an unbiased review. Really drive home the idea that as a small business owner, you care about continuous improvement. Most will leave you a strong review but even if you get a 3-star review, use it as an opportunity to improve your product.
Showcase your brand! Really try and spend some time developing a beautiful insert. While this is more of an indirect marketing strategy, it’s powerful. Don’t go simple. Drive home the message to your customers that you care about every little details in your business down to the package insert. This will further impress customers and increase your returning customer %.
Customer support. This is straight forward. Adding a customer support email on the insert and alerting the customer that you are there to help can be huge for resolving issues directly with customers. Sometimes it’s a simple question about a feature. Other times it’s a defect. Solving these issues right away can be a powerful way to build trust with your customer base.
This is a great spot to alert your customers about any specific warranty you offer for your product. It’s a reminder to your customer that you stand behind the product you sell. This is yet another way to distinguish yourself from your competitors.
What are the Rules?
Here’s where things get a bit tricky. Amazon doesn’t publish rules specifically for package inserts! You have to dig a bit and extrapolate. There is one overarching rule that Amazon will suspend you for though. Never, and I mean never ask for positive reviews on your insert or bribe a customer for a positive review. The language on your insert needs to be very boring and only ask for an “unbiased” review. If you break this rule, all it takes is a quick picture of your insert and an email to amazon and they will take action against your account. Risking your business over some insert language is simply not worth it. Your competitors will try and take you out every chance they get. Don’t provide fuel for the fire.
The second rule is to never add an “IF” statement on your insert. For example, never ask for a review ONLY if the customer hasn’t had any issues. Diverting them to a customer support email to avoid negative reviews is a sure-fire way to get suspended in a heartbeat. It’s simply not worth the risk and goes against Amazon’s term of service.
A third rule to abide by is to never ask a customer to shop on your brand’s main website in the future. Amazon does not look too kindly on losing customers to third party seller websites. Here’s the rule of thumb: if the customer is from Amazon, keep them buying on Amazon. This will keep your account out of trouble.
Inserts are King
I don’t say that lightly. Inserts are really that powerful but making sure you are following Amazon’s rules is crucial. As long as you aren’t breaking any of Amazon’s posted rules and only seeking unbiased reviews, you can rest easy. Customers will appreciate your extra touch through a beautiful insert and be more prone to interact with your brand outside of Amazon and buy again in the future.
Every aspect of your business needs to be laser focused on branding. From the moment the customer places the order, to the “opening” experience, to the package insert. These elements are all part of a larger branding strategy that every seller should be utilizing. We simply don’t know how much longer Amazon will allow package inserts so use them while you can!