How Can You Create Variation On Amazon? What is Allowed & What isn't?
Have you recently received a notification of a listing policy violation regarding the unauthorized use of ASIN variants? Have any of your listings been orphaned, or, worse still, has your account been suspended or deactivated?
We’ve seen an increase in discussion about this occurring to sellers and understand your aggravation – making variants on Amazon can be difficult, and you may have been running without incident for years until red flags were raised.
The good news is that assistance is readily accessible. Read this article to get a better knowledge of parent-child connections, including when to utilize them and which Amazon policies to review carefully. Additionally, you’ll get excellent guidance on how to manage these circumstances and other must-know insights from ADI INFOSYS, a team of industry professionals specialized in account reinstatement.
What Are Variation Relationships?
There are many advantages to product variety, but as you are probably aware, it may be challenging to implement in reality. Additionally, you may be unintentionally repeating the same error.
Having a firm grasp on what a variant connection is in Amazon’s eyes is critical, regardless of whether you’re just getting started or returning to the drawing board. You may have a different perspective, but it is irrelevant in this instance since you are adhering to Amazon’s standards. The marketplace defines variation relationships as follows.
Variations (also known as parent-child relationships) are sets of products that are related to one another in terms of size, color, flavor, etc. Good variation relationship listings allow buyers to compare and choose products based on different attributes such as size, color, or other characteristics from the available options on a single product detail page.
Additionally, you must consider three components of a good variation relationship:
- Parent Product: The parent ASIN is a non-purchasable item that is used to refer to child goods. Consider it the parent ASIN’s general holding space for its progeny, or kid ASINs.
- Child Products: A child product is similar to its parent product but is differentiated in some manner, such as in size or color (or sometimes both). The products offered for purchasing are ASINs for children.
- Variation Theme: The theme of variation describes how similar goods vary from one another. Themes differ according on product category (see the “valid values” tab in your inventory file to determine the kinds of relationships supported by your category). Each entry is limited to a single variant theme, although certain categories allow for multiple or hybrid versions. For instance, kid items in the Clothing, Shoes, and Jewelry category may have a size-color variation, as shown in the listing below for the tiny Blue Topaz Heather t-shirt. A 12-ounce bag of beef-flavored dog treats in the Pet Supplies category is another example (a quantity-flavor combination).
When to Use Parent-Child Relationships?
Amazon will need you to choose a variant theme that is suitable for establishing a legitimate parent-child connection. However, given that not all linked goods are legitimate variants, what does it even mean to have a “suitable” topic and a “valid” relationship?
When producing variants on Amazon, the marketplace wants you to consider the following:
- Are the products fundamentally the same?
- Could they share the same title?
- Do they vary only in a few, specific ways that don’t alter the product’s core use?
- Would customers expect to find them together on a single product page?
Essentially, you cannot group items that are fundamentally dissimilar, such as a bag with wheels beside one with a shoulder strap. While they may perform similarly, you could not respond “yes” to any of the above questions.
This becomes more complicated, though, when you offer numerous items in a variety of styles and colors. You may not notice the distinctions (they are, after all, the same product). nevertheless, a consumer will. It has a direct effect on their purchasing experience, which is important to Amazon.
Consider selling coffee cups in a variety of colors and with a variety of various sayings. If all the sayings were generally available in each color variation, you could build a variation family based on the color variation theme for each saying. However, if the blue cup just reads “Best Dad Ever” and the pink mug only says “Best Mom Ever,” you could not lawfully put this up as a simple color theme variation. The picture below helps you visualize this situation – see the difference?
Top Tips for Creating Variations on Amazon
There’s a lot to consider when you’re creating variations on Amazon, so here are some of the biggest things to remember:
- Ensure that each child product is completely described in depth so that it may be included in browse and search.
- Add the relevant variation value, such as size or color, to the title of each child ASIN.
- Avoid creating families with more than 2,000 kid ASINs, which is the maximum number that Amazon will show.
- Avoid creating variation families or adding child ASINs to variation families that do not belong to the same brand or product category.
- Include no pricing or quantity information for parent goods.
- Avoid include the variation value in the title of the parent product.
- Use just the authorized theme that is provided.
- No more than one product feature should be included in a variant attribute.
Additionally, it is critical to understand how variants appear in search results and on product pages – they are not always consistent, which leads some sellers to believe something is wrong.
Clothing, Accessories & Luggage, Sporting Goods, and Beauty all include top-selling parent goods in search results and on product pages, as well as display components (i.e. title and description) derived from the parent product. Each other category will display the best-selling child product in search results and on product pages, along with any related display elements.
How to Determine Product Variations: When to use them and other advice from Amazon
How to Add Variations on Amazon: Using inventory files or XML uploads to create parent-child relationships
Using the Variation Wizard to Add Variations: How to create parent-child variation relationships in bulk
Variation Relationship FAQ: Answers on how to reassign a child product, combine ASINs into one variation family, and more common problems
Variation Misuse: Common Mistakes and What Amazon Wants to See from You
Amazon’s variation policy outlines four main misuses of variations which can lead to “your ASIN creation or selling privileges being temporarily or permanently removed.” They are:
- Changing the parent or child product’s detail page to be substantially different from the initial listing.
- Changing the parent product’s detail page so it doesn’t match the child products.
- Adding child products that aren’t valid variations of the parent product. This includes adding newer versions or models of the parent ASIN later on, which is something that we see all the time as sellers try to piggyback on an existing item’s reviews.
- Adding multi-pack variations that weren’t created by the manufacturer to an existing parent product.
Child products can only vary by the theme, and available themes differ by category. If your products don’t fit into one of the available themes, Amazon doesn’t want them in a variation family.
The other mistake involves adding extraneous information to product attributes, like adding “blue large wagon” to the color attribute when it should just be “blue”.
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