Recently whilst sipping tea it occurred to me… Amazon’s power to regulate supplements might exceed that of the FDA. By a wide margin. Creating the surge in demand for unique copywriting skill set that combines nutritional supplement expertise, FDA-friendly regulatory style expertise, adapted for Amazon listings.
So how to get approved to sell supplements on Amazon?
If you need help in that arena, then the Natural Health Writer is your man. If you don’t and want to try to do it yourself, I suggest you read on, anyway.
In this article I talk about my Amazon supplement power theory a bit more. I also share some useful tips to get you started on your way to compliance for selling on Amazon… which just happens to help you with the FDA, too.
Let’s dive into this idea that Amazon’s new dietary supplement policy that is more stringent in assessing a supplement’s claims and marketing copy. In theory it’s not that different from what the FDA does.
But, here is the key difference: Amazon will block you from selling your product at all unless you comply. Whereas with the FDA, which is an overburdened organization, warning letters are issued. After the product is already on the shelves.
Both systems have their merits. But it’s easy to see that by controlling the flow of commerce instantaneously, Amazon is able to deliver far swifter and harsher punishments (to a company’s bottom line, anyway).
How harsh are these punishments? Rather than a polite warning letter, Amazon can ban sellers forever, instantly remove product listings, and even stop payouts to sellers.
Selling dietary supplements on Amazon?
Remember: Amazon has ultimate control over compliance, within their own domain.
And Amazon’s compliance requirements for supplements may be more complex than you might think.
Beyond claims (in line with DSHEA), copy, and content, compliance involves ensuring that labeling and packaging are correct, and that some measures of quality must be substantiated and supported. In terms of copy, guidelines will be familiar to those who are fluent in FDA friendly writing.
Did you know? The Natural Health Writer is a DSHEA expert. I worked one-on-one with Gerald Kessler – one of the architects of DSHEA – on DSHEA-related content projects over the course of years.
It is interesting to note that Amazon’s new dietary supplements guideline policy, released in November 2020, also addresses images. It requires that images must be clear, with legible text. In combination with clean copy, clean imagery can elevate the presence of your brand on Amazon, anyway.
In other words, whether you are starting from scratch or refreshing an existing page, you may need my copywriting help for Amazon’s unique requirements.
It can be challenging to strike the perfect balance of marketing sizzle and regulatory restraint.
I have navigated these waters for years now, close to 20 years, in fact! I can help craft compelling, sexy copy for your dietary supplement that will sail through Amazon’s regulatory review.
As a bonus, this copy can be used elsewhere and, because it is clean and FDA-friendly to begin with, it will perform equally well in passing review for other media outlets, when reviewed by your lawyer
Whether you are thinking about selling a supplement on Amazon, or you are already selling supplements on Amazon, contact me or audit your existing copy to point out potential issues.
Let’s take a look at Amazon’s requirements for dietary supplement sellers.
Did you know Amazon used to have a $3,000 fee to sell supplements? It’s not much easier to sell supplements on Amazon today, due to their seller guidelines released in November of 2020.
Some points to keep in mind:
- Amazon Letter of Guarantee: You must provide this document formally, on company letterhead
- USP dietary supplement verification program: Voluntary quality testing to a high standard
- Supplement label requirements: Be sure to proofread! Make sure your dosages match the contents
- Amazon certificate of analysis: You will need ISO/IEC 17025 Lab accreditation; ingredient assay
- DSHEA applies: Find a content expert fluent the Dietary Supplement Health & Education Act
That last point is the most direct. And that’s how I would approach, or at least keep that in mind as a core tenet of your Amazon copy. It must respect DSHEA. At a bare minimum this means your content must avoid unsubstantiated and untruthful claims.
This especially includes the basics. Your supplement can support what is healthy. You can encourage healthy function. It can help in a general way. Unless you have great, gold-standard human research studies back in your claims. In which case seeking it more into specifics. But even then, your language matters. The subtle nuance that allows one claim in this the same that is rejected for complete revision.
As if this framework were not challenging enough, now factor in the need for dynamic copywriting and marketing sizzle. This is especially crucial on Amazon. Your listing must pop. Your copy must sparkle. You have to differentiate, communicate, weave storytelling, educate, all while carefully avoiding content pitfalls that could undo your ability to sell your supplement on Amazon.
Another aspect of this to keep in mind: Amazon’s approach may soon be the standard everywhere. It makes less and less sense for companies to flout these rules. To sidestep them. Amazon’s move in this direction is good for supplement quality, good for the industry’s reputation in the eyes of the consumer, and overall a healthy development.
For savvy Amazon sellers, it also creates an opportunity to skillfully outmaneuver their competition with sophisticated Amazon-compliance supplement copy that simply performs better.
Are you looking to start an Amazon supplement business? Need to refresh your existing Amazon listings for better compliance and greater conversion? Or maybe you’re ready to finally overhaul everything – all of your copy, to streamline it, back it up with strong research, and bring it closer to the target on compliance.
The Natural Health Writer can help you with all of these challenges.
Contact me today and reserve some time. I am ready to speak with you, and ready to advance you to your goals. Let’s get you selling on Amazon right away, and get you sailing through the approval process!