Amazon uses old school snail mail to make sure the sellers in its market really live where they say they do.
After asking third parties last September to publish their company name and address, Amazon is now verifying that their addresses are authentic and correct. To do this, the company has launched a new initiative that involves sending a postcard to third-party vendors selling in the US market to verify their addresses. This came out from an email verified by CNBC.
“As part of our commitment to providing our customers and distributors with a safe and trustworthy shopping experience, we need to verify the business address displayed on your Amazon.com seller profile page,” the email said. Traders will not do this to prevent the platform from selling while their address is being verified.
This is what the postcards look like:
Amazon sends postcards like this one to third party vendors to verify the address given in their profile.
There is a confirmation code on the postcard that sellers must enter on an internal portal. Here, the recipient’s address and verification code have been hidden to protect their identity.
Amazon confirmed to CNBC that it started testing the initiative with new sellers last year, and then brought in some existing sellers earlier this year. The company is now planning to expand the initiative further. Three third-party vendors told CNBC that Amazon told them this week that they would soon receive a postcard that they could use to verify their address.
First, Amazon will contact a seller and inform them that the company needs to verify their business address. Merchants then check and confirm their business address in an internal seller portal called Seller Central. Once that’s done, Amazon will send a postcard to sellers that will arrive in a few days.
There is a verification code on the postcard that sellers must enter in Seller Central according to a CNBC verified copy of the postcard. Sellers have 60 days to verify their address. If they fail to do so, Amazon may withhold money from the sellers’ accounts.
Amazon will block all accounts that have an illegal address. And if a seller’s postcard is lost in the mail, Amazon can request a new one to be sent to their address.
Last fall, the company urged retailers in its US market to publicly disclose their company name and business address to make it easier for consumers to verify these sellers and their products before buying.
Amazon operates online marketplaces in more than a dozen regions, but the largest is in the United States. At the end of March, Amazon had over 6 million third-party sellers worldwide, more than half of which were reportedly sold on Amazon in North America Market square pulse, an e-commerce research company.
Before the new policy went into effect last September, consumers could click through to a seller’s profile to review buyer feedback, view their satisfaction rating, and contact the seller with any questions.
However, there was no easy way to determine where the seller was based or what legal entity was selling the product, unless consumers were shopping on Amazon marketplaces in Europe, Mexico and Japan, where sellers had their company names and names on them for a long time need to provide their address. due to local laws.
As Amazon has grown into one of the largest e-commerce providers in the world, it has built a huge third-party marketplace made up of millions of companies selling their goods. Third Party Sales make up more than half of Amazon revenue. However, the sprawling size of the market has opened the company to a number of issues, including the proliferation of counterfeit, unsafe, and expired goods. Amazon has stepped up its efforts in recent years to keep bad actors out who could jeopardize its relationship with buyers.
Listing seller information in the US, as well as verifying that it is correct via the postcards, could be effective measures to help Amazon drive more bad actors off the platform. Google also sends postcards to check company addresses on Google Maps and other properties.
For example, it has become a common tactic for traders Create multiple accounts to continue selling on the platform after being banned by Amazon, which is against Amazon Seller Policies. If a seller has dozens of accounts, they’ll need to display a unique business address for each account and verify that the address is real.
“It may be the only way to answer the question, is the address you gave us an address to that you can access?” Said Juozas Kaziukenas, CEO and founder of Marketplace Pulse. Otherwise, a seller can enter any address and there’s no way to answer the same question, especially for international sellers. Amazon needs bank statements and other documents for new sellers with an address that matches the one you submitted on it and for old sellers. “