Amazon ban

Amazon bans 3 more Chinese brands: The suspension came after sellers were found to have offered gift cards to customers willing to write positive reviews of their purchases…

Amid e-commerce giant Amazon’s ongoing battle with sellers’ attempts to get positive reviews from consumers, three more Chinese consumer brands have been banned from selling products on the platform, dealing a new blow to the “made in China, sold on Amazon” community.

Citing Guangdong-based SACA Precision Manufacturing, the South China Morning Post (SCMP) reported that Amazon banned the sale of RAVPower power banks, Taotronics headphones and VAVA cameras, three brands of Shenzhen-based Sunvalley, effective June 16.

The sales suspension came after retailers were found to be offering gift cards to customers willing to write positive reviews of their purchases. This is a common practice in the Chinese e-commerce world, but Amazon considers it an abuse of the review system.

“According to our investigation, the reason [for the ban] may be that some products offered gift cards to customers, which is allegedly a violation of Amazon platform rules,” SACA said in a statement.

The three brands affected by the latest decision sell a range of consumer electronics products, including baby cameras, with the affected products accounting for about a third of Sunvalley’s total revenue from sales on Amazon since early 2020, SCMP reported, citing the statement.

The online platform has taken similar action against other Chinese sellers for violating rules about fake customer reviews, including an online store backed by TikTok owner ByteDance.

Since last month, listings from some of China’s largest electronic gadget sellers have disappeared from Amazon’s online marketplace, SCMP previously reported.

Amazon has a “zero-tolerance” policy for violations, including asking friends to leave reviews, and the company’s latest actions have attracted widespread public attention in China because of the sellers involved.

“Amazon is shutting down thousands of stores every day for manipulating its review system. This time it’s so prominent because the stores they’re closing are very large,” said Zach Franklin, an Amazon consultant for sellers in Shenzhen.

One of those affected by Amazon is electronics retailer Aukey, which received more than three-quarters of its revenue from Amazon in the first quarter of 2018 and 2019, according to a prospectus it filed in 2019.

Mpow, Amazon’s main electronics store run by ByteDance and Xiaomi-backed consumer goods firm Patozon, also suffered a crackdown. According to a financial report, it received 2 billion yuan from exports in the first half of 2020.

“The main reason Amazon specifically targeted the largest Chinese accounts is to send a very strong message to sellers. If you break the rules, we will shut you down,” Franklin said.

In recent years, an increasing number of Chinese sellers have turned to major international e-commerce platforms, including eBay and Amazon, to reach consumers outside their home market.

Despite Amazon’s struggles with fake reviews, there are some small sellers who choose to continue this practice to stay competitive. (ANI)

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