Amazon Acceptable Condition. Selling products on Amazon as a third-party seller requires understanding their condition guidelines. Amazon has clear policies about what constitutes “new,” “refurbished,” “used – like new,” “used – very good,” “used – good,” and “used – acceptable” products. While sellers want to describe their items accurately to avoid refunds or removal, it’s also important not to under-grade an item’s condition. Knowing the nuances of these guidelines can help sellers maximize their profits. This comprehensive guide covers everything sellers need to know about Amazon’s acceptable condition policies.
What Counts As “New” on Amazon?
Products listed as “new” on Amazon should be in brand-new, unused, unopened, undamaged packaging. The item itself has never been used or taken out of the manufacturer’s sealing. Any seals, shrink-wrap, or protective covers must be intact just as they were when the product left the factory. The packaging should not be damaged, marked on, written on, or show any other signs of wear. All original accessories, parts, instructions manuals, warranty information, and other inclusions should be present just as if purchased directly from the manufacturer.
The item cannot have any defects whatsoever – it should look and function exactly as a customer would expect when buying a brand new version. There should be absolutely no signs of use or flaws. Any product that shows evidence of being used, tested, or taken out of the packaging cannot be listed as new. New also cannot be used for refurbished or pre-owned items. Sellers must follow all applicable regulations and laws regarding the sale of new products, and the items must match the official new condition designations.
What Does Amazon Consider “Refurbished”?
For an item to be listed as refurbished on Amazon, it must be professionally restored to full working order. The item has been inspected, cleaned, and repaired as needed to meet manufacturer specifications. Any defective parts are replaced with brand new components, and the item is thoroughly tested to confirm perfect functionality.
The product will show limited or no signs of wear – it should look and work like new with only minor cosmetic blemishes. The refurbishing process is conducted by qualified professionals, not by an individual seller. Refurbished products come with some type of warranty to verify their restored condition. All original accessories are included or replaced with brand new accessories. While some refurbished items may be packaged in a generic box, they should come with all relevant instruction manuals, parts, and registration documents.
Refurbished items were typically returned by a previous owner, had minor damage fixed, and now function like new. Calling an item refurbished when it has not been professionally reconditioned can lead to disputes. Always check that refurbished products truly meet Amazon’s high standards.
Defining “Used – Like New” Condition on Amazon
Products listed as “Used – Like New” should be practically indistinguishable from brand new items to the average customer. There should be absolutely no functional defects – everything works perfectly. Any signs of use or wear should be very minor and cosmetic only. There can be a small scratch here or a barely noticeable scuff there, but overall the item looks new.
All parts, accessories, instructions, warranty cards, and packaging should be present, though the packaging may show minimal damage. Any flaws to the packaging should not impact its ability to protect the product. If anything is missing or defective, it must be disclosed in the listing. With proper care and cleaning, there should be no readily visible blemishes or marks on the item itself. Nothing stands out as used.
Used – Like New means the product has been opened or taken out of its packaging, but was used gently. It may have been on display in a store or briefly tested or inspected. Any signs of use must be negligible. Listings with significant damage or wear should not be classified under this condition tier.
What Counts As “Used – Very Good” on Amazon?
Products listed as “Used – Very Good” should have only minor cosmetic defects that do not impact functionality. The item works perfectly but shows visible signs of use that a new product would not. For example, the packaging will have some wear and tear such as scratches, scuffs, dents, or creases. Any seals or shrink-wrap would be opened.
The item itself can show light scratches, small dents, or other minor imperfections from normal use. Instructions, manuals, accessories, and parts should all be included unless otherwise noted in the listing. Any missing pieces should not inhibit the product’s full usability. There may be writing, stickers, or sticker residue on the item from previous use. Overall the product shows moderate use but no significant damage.
Used – Very Good means an item was used carefully by its previous owner and stored properly when not in use. While not flawless, it was well-maintained and in much better than average pre-owned condition. Functionally it operates as new, though cosmetically it is clearly not brand new. Any defects are trivial and do not detract from appearance or performance.
Amazon’s “Used – Good” Condition Guidelines
Listings designated as “Used – Good” on Amazon allow for more obvious and pronounced signs of wear and use. The item works perfectly but has clear evidence of previous ownership and use. The packaging will have noticeable wear such as tears, crushing, holes, stains, or marks. Any seals or shrink-wrap will be opened or missing.
The item itself can have scratches, scuffs, dents, discoloration, surface impressions, or other cosmetic issues from use. Any included instructions, manuals, parts, and accessories will be present unless otherwise stated in the listing description. Flaws in the item’s physical appearance are acceptable as long as they do not inhibit its functionality.
Overall the product shows consistent signs of moderate use with visible defects, marks, fading, and wear. It may need minor repairs or refurbishing to pass as Used – Very Good condition. Used – Good items function properly despite flawed aesthetics. The defects should not impact enjoyment of the product during normal use.
What is Considered “Used – Acceptable” on Amazon?
Items listed as “Used – Acceptable” represent the most worn and damaged condition tier before an item can no longer be sold as usable on Amazon. The packaging will be well worn with potentially significant tearing, marking, denting, crushing, taping, stickers, stains, or other cosmetic damage that does not affect its ability to protect the contents. Any original sealing or shrink-wrap will be missing.
The item itself will show major imperfections from heavy use. Scratches, scuffs, cracks, dents, discoloration, dirt, and other blemishes will be readily visible upon inspection. There may be parts, accessories, or minor components missing as long as it does not significantly impair functionality. Instructions or manuals may be marked, torn, written on, or missing pages.
While not attractive, Used – Acceptable items are fully operational. Any defects are strictly cosmetic or minor enough not to interfere with everyday use after cleaning or minor repairs. As long as the issues do not critically impact user experience, the item may be sold as acceptable. However, acceptable condition is the lowest usable tier before an item becomes unsalable junk.
Tips for Accurately Grading Condition
- Carefully inspect all aspects of the product and packaging before listing
- Disclose any missing parts, accessories, manuals or damage in descriptions
- Compare to descriptions of each condition tier and select the best match
- When in doubt, choose the lower condition grade to avoid disputes
- Take clear photos documenting any flaws to support your grading
- Note improvements needed to reach the next higher condition tier
- Pack items well to avoid shipping damage impacting your rating
- Respond helpfully if a buyer complains and issue refunds for valid concerns
Accurately grading the condition of inventory takes attention to detail, honesty, and a thorough inspection process. Following Amazon’s guidelines protects sellers from unfair ratings while setting appropriate buyer expectations. With practice, sellers learn to make the subtle distinctions between tiers to maximize profits while keeping Amazon and customers satisfied. Comprehensive condition disclosure and support build a positive brand reputation among shoppers.
The Bottom Line
Knowing Amazon’s specific definitions for product conditions allows sellers to describe items appropriately while fetching fair prices. Listings with deceptive or exaggerated condition claims quickly lead to disputes, refunds, and revoked selling privileges. Condition guidelines cover everything from the packaging to the item’s functionality and cosmetic appearance. Minor issues are acceptable, but must be clearly disclosed. With proper grading and descriptions, third-party sellers can thrive on Amazon Marketplace while providing customers with realistic expectations.
What are Amazon’s condition guidelines?
Amazon has detailed guidelines for what qualifies as “new,” “refurbished,” “used – like new,” “used – very good,” “used – good,” and “used – acceptable” when selling items as a third-party seller. These policies cover the expected wear, flaws, damages, and missing parts for each tier.
Why is grading condition accurately important?
Proper condition grading helps set buyer expectations, prevents disputes, and allows sellers to maximize profits. Inaccurate grades lead to unhappy customers and claims against the seller. Amazon enforces their guidelines strictly.
Can an item be listed as “new” if the packaging is damaged?
No, any item with damaged packaging cannot be listed as new on Amazon. New means completely untouched just as it left the manufacturer.
What if a used item looks brand new?
Even if a used item appears untouched, it still cannot be listed as new. Any evidence of use means it must be listed in a used condition tier.
Can I list a product as “refurbished” if I fixed it?
No, only items refurbished by qualified professionals can be called refurbished. Individual sellers cannot claim their repairs make an item refurbished.
What condition is appropriate for an item with light scratches?
An item with light scratching but no other significant defects matches the “Used – Very Good” condition description.
Can I list a damaged box as “Used – Like New”?
No, the packaging for “Used – Like New” must have only minimal cosmetic damage, if any. A damaged box means choosing a lower condition tier.
What if a used product is missing accessories?
The missing accessories must be clearly stated in the listing details. The item condition grade should reflect the lack of complete contents.
Can I improve the condition before listing?
Yes, sellers can clean, repair, or refurbish items before listing to achieve a higher condition tier than as originally found.
What if I think my item is between two tiers?
When in doubt, pick the lower condition grade. It is better to exceed expectations than disappoint customers.
What happens if Amazon disagrees with my condition grade?
If Amazon determines an item was mis-graded, they may remove the listing or require corrections. Accounts with repeated issues can face suspension.
Should I disclose any flaws in the listing?
Yes, disclose any defects, damage, missing pieces, etc. in the description to support your chosen condition grade.
Can I change the condition later if inaccurate?
It is best to grade carefully upfront to avoid issues. But if a grade is found to be incorrect, contact Amazon to amend the listing condition.
What if a customer disagrees with my listed condition?
Respond promptly and politely, offer to make amends if an error did occur. Amazon favors sellers who fix buyer disputes.
How can I improve at grading item conditions?
Practice, care, experience, and staying up-to-date on Amazon’s guidelines will help improve condition assessments.