Amazon allegedly offered merchants a way to 'bid' for its Amazon Choice badge

midian182

TechSpot Editor
Staff member

Digiday reports that it’s unclear how many vendors took up this offer, which is believed to have only been available for a few months back in 2017. The publication writes that while the Amazon Choice label wasn’t explicitly offered for a price, there was an internal process in place that could be seen as manipulating the system.

Amazon reportedly had criteria in place for brands that wanted to place bids, ensuring they came only from those already selling high-quality goods on its platform.

In one case, an Amazon strategic vendor service manager recommended the brand drop its selling price by $30 in order to win the bid, thereby increasing Amazon’s profits on the sale.

Amazon also allegedly offered incentives to potential bidders, including free and discounted analytics services, Amazon Vine credits, email promotions, and higher inventory purchases for 12 weeks. In return, Amazon wanted brands to commit to putting resources into their listings to win a badge. The company “asked bidders to list investments that they planned to make to support the product, as well as marketing that already was running,” writes Digiday.

Amazon denies there was ever a program in place that let vendors pay for an Amazon Choice badge.

Following a Buzzfeed investigation that revealed certain Amazon Choice products contained defects or were the result of review manipulation, US senators Bob Menendez (D-NJ) and Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) sent a letter to Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos demanding more details about how the badge works. The company has until September 16 to respond.

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Uncle Al

TS Evangelist
More and more Amazon has become the scuz bucket of the retail world. One of their drivers recently trashed my yard by driving their truck into it. Amazon won't address it but turned it over to a firm in New Jersey that's only concern is wanting me to settle for 1/3rd the cost to repair. Amazing in as much as I have the pictures and video of the driver "in action". Unfortunately, Amazon has no soul, "prime" means nothing more than they took you for another $120, their "guarantee" on delivery is meaningless ... we can only hope that a few more retailers will come along to replace them soon!
 

MasterMace

TS Booster
Amazon is splitting hairs when it says a company isn't "Paying" for it so much as "not taking as much money" in order to get it.
 

ckm88

TS Maniac
More and more Amazon has become the scuz bucket of the retail world. One of their drivers recently trashed my yard by driving their truck into it. Amazon won't address it but turned it over to a firm in New Jersey that's only concern is wanting me to settle for 1/3rd the cost to repair. Amazing in as much as I have the pictures and video of the driver "in action". Unfortunately, Amazon has no soul, "prime" means nothing more than they took you for another $120, their "guarantee" on delivery is meaningless ... we can only hope that a few more retailers will come along to replace them soon!
That sucks man. Prime is a running joke - has been since day 1. I'm glad I stiff them of the free trials.