New Rule: You Have to Have Spent $50 (Minimum) to Post a Review at Amazon

New Rule: You Have to Have Spent $50 (Minimum) to Post a Review at Amazon Amazon Reviews

Any system that is important enough to be measured is going to be gamed by cheaters, and Amazon's reviews section is no exception to that rule.

Amazon has fought back by suing over fake reviews, deleting reviews where the buyer appeared to have a relationship with the author,  filing for arbitration against scammers, and putting a cap on the number of reviews you can post without buying the product.

Now Amazon has revised its reviews policy yet again, this time to target scammers who open new Amazon accounts just to post a review.

To contribute to Customer Reviews or Customer Answers, Spark, or to follow other contributors, you must have spent at least $50 on Amazon.com using a valid credit or debit card. Prime subscriptions and promotional discounts don't qualify towards the $50 minimum.

It's good to see Amazon continue to fight scammers, but I don't know that this will have much impact. After all, a scammer can always buy the products they were hired to review and then charge their clients for a verified review.

This is basically a game of whack-a-mole, but fortunately, this time around authors won't get caught up in Amazon's fight against scammers.

About Nate Hoffelder (11371 Articles)
Nate Hoffelder is the founder and editor of The Digital Reader:"I've been into reading ebooks since forever, but I only got my first ereader in July 2007. Everything quickly spiraled out of control from there. Before I started this blog in January 2010 I covered ebooks, ebook readers, and digital publishing for about 2 years as a part of MobileRead Forums. It's a great community, and being a member is a joy. But I thought I could make something out of how I covered the news for MobileRead, so I started this blog."

10 Comments on New Rule: You Have to Have Spent $50 (Minimum) to Post a Review at Amazon

  1. I wonder how this applies internationally? I have a couple of reviewers who live in Scotland and Australia. The Australian one is great about logging on to Amazon US to post his review. I wonder if they will still let him do it? Hopefully, they won’t go back and delete it because it was a stellar and in-dept review!

  2. Have I missed something, because I thought Amazon.com already brought in this rule a few months back? However, I notice they now have it in Amazon UK – it’s a £40 minimum spend.

    I wonder if this will mean fewer .com reviews, but more posted to other countries’ sites?

  3. I think the valid credit card (not a gift card) is as important as the $50 since it is pretty hard to set up a lot of fake credit card accounts. Not perfect, but at least it’s something.

  4. New rule? This was introduced over a year ago.

    https://sellercentral.amazon.com/forums/thread.jspa?threadID=319143&tstart=0

    It was widely reported at the time that books were exempt from this regulation.

    • no, what was widely reported was that books were exempt from the review cap which was announced a few months later. I don’t think anyone reported on this part of the policy when it was enacted.

      (edit: or at least that is what I recall; I could be wrong)

  5. This rule went into effect in the US in September, 2016, but a reminder is always useful. I reported the changes in my blog in October 2016. http://annerallen.com/2016/10/amazons-new-review-rules-should-authors-worry/
    “The New $50 Rule: To post a review, customers must spend at least $50.00 using a valid credit or debit card. Prime subscriptions and promotional discounts don’t qualify towards the $50.00 minimum. Customers in the same household cannot submit a review for the same product.” “

  6. Most of my reviews are posted on Amazon by way of GoodReads or the Kindle. I wonder if I already met the $50 requirement, or if GoodReads is a backdoor.

  7. I’m surprised you didn’t google this before posting about it. This has been a policy for over a year now. Not only did Anne R Allen post about it (her link is above) but several other sites covered the TOS change. https://sellics.com/blog-amazon-review-policy-fake-incentivized-reviews
    As far as I can tell, it has had little impact on scammers, though. 🙁

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