Amazon Charging Sellers $5k For Human Customer Service Guarantee
Amazon is apparently charging third-party sellers as much as US$5,000 a month to gain access to a dedicated customer-service person, as opposed to dealing with the online marketplace’s unreliable automated responses, according to a new report by the Washington Post.
The report states that sellers who don’t pay for the system would be left without access to immediate help from a real person, which could have devastating effects on a sellers’ business, especially in cases where instant support is needed.
“We promote this option as strategic account services, with sellers being assigned an account manager and receive personalised coaching and mentoring to help stay competitive and leverage our team to assist with time-consuming tasks so they can concentrate on growing their business,” Amazon told Business Insider.
Amazon says they still offer customer service to sellers who don’t opt-in to this service but will not be receiving the dedicated account manager.
“Sellers have full control of their business and make the decisions that are best for them, including the products they choose to sell, pricing and how they choose to fulfil orders,” Amazon continued.
“Sellers are required to pay only the monthly fee and referral fee, and other fees for additional services are optional.”
This recent development adds to the online marketplace’s recent troubles in regard to regulators’ probes for potential violations of anti-trust law and abusing marketplace power.
The Washington Post spoke to several sellers who said that Amazon’s role as “both a marketplace operator and retailer creates a system that hurts” other retailers and online sellers.
According to The Post, Amazon currently receives up to 35 cents off every dollar from products sold third-party sellers.