As a seller on Amazon, ensuring that your seller account remains in good standing with Amazon is the lifeblood of your business. Many American sellers on Amazon Europe are worried about the KYC process, and have read the stories on message boards and blogs about sellers getting their accounts closed down.
What is Know Your Customer?
KYC = Know Your Customer. KYC is the process used by a business to verify the identity of their clients. The process is in place in order to prevent fraud, money laundering and identity theft, amongst others (AKA Due Diligence).
Why Does Amazon Require KYC Review?
Amazon is required by local laws and regulations (in the region, regime, and regulatory framework in which they are operating), to review their customers (in this case, you) to ensure they’re not engaging in any of the illegal activities described above. Thus Amazon will periodically require sellers to pass a KYC review.
How Does the KYC Process Start?
The KYC process can be triggered by many things, but some of the most common culprits are adding new marketplaces, switching bank accounts, and VAT registration. Many sellers are afraid of the KYC process. The reality is if you’re operating a legitimate business with all of the required registrations, licenses, and documentation, you will have nothing to fear.
Here’s What to Do If is Amazon Asking for KYC Verifications
Let’s take a look at some common situations that can trigger the KYC process and how to fix them.
When You Start Selling in a New Marketplace
May times when you decide to start selling on a new marketplace, Amazon will want to make sure that you’re properly registered for VAT, and have also entered the correct bank account information. In order to verify your identity, they will ask for a lot of documentation to verify the status of your business. Are you registered as a sole proprietor? Did you change the type of business you’re operating? If so, then you’ll have to supply up to date information relating to your business status.
Amazon will ask you to upload these ID items and proof of business:
- Personal ID: Passport
- Proof of residential address: Utility bill, credit card statement, etc.
- Business documents: Varies depending on the type of business that you operate, ie. Operating Agreement, Articles of Association, Fictitious Business Name Certificate
Get more details on the information required to sell on Amazon Europe in Seller Central.
When You Switch Bank Accounts
Amazon advises that you enter your banking details so that they can send you a micropayment.
When you enter your bank details Amazon will send you a small amount of money (less than £1.00) which will appear in your bank account within 5-10 working days. When you receive this payment, you’ll need to click on the link in this line: To provide the required information, please log into your seller account, and click on the top right hand corner Settings > Account Info. You’ll then need to Verify Micropayments in the deposit section.
When Registering for VAT
Amazon will also want to ensure that you have registered to pay VAT, in which case they’ll ask that you confirm the UTR number (or VAT registration number) that was supplied to you from HMRC (or any other tax authority), was also correctly given to Amazon.
Know that KYC is a Process
We realize Know Your Customer is a frustrating process, but Amazon will usually provide you with an exact list of the documentation that you need. Here are a few more tips to head off problems before they can happen. Double check everything before sending. Follow the instructions exactly, and make sure all of the information in your account exactly matches the documents you upload.
Realize that Amazon has millions of sellers that they need to verify, so it may take them days or even weeks to get back. We’re here for you if you have issues with your KYC, don’t hesitate to get in touch.