Everyone likes free stuff. There aren’t many ways to get anything for free in this life, but Amazon product testers have been getting free gift cards and products sent to them since 2007.
There are ways to make money with Amazon, but being a reviewer means you skip the money altogether and go straight for what you would have bought anyway.
Want to know how to become an Amazon reviewer?
Well, then you’re in luck because I went searching for some concrete answers to find out what it takes to start reviewing Amazon products for free haul.
There are two ways to get your free swag:
As an official Amazon product tester who’s part of the Vine program, you’d get access to a range of products from Amazon that you can choose to review. The prices for these products can range from anywhere between $1 to over $1000 and span every category on the seller’s website.
In addition to that, you can let companies find you and offer you free or discounted products in exchange for an Amazon review. This isn’t done via Amazon but is still a good option, as you’ll just have to negotiate the deal yourself.
Feel free to go for either option, or both, as I discuss the ins and outs of testing products for Amazon below.
Option 1: Join Amazon Vine
The Amazon Vine program is an invite-only initiative that was started by Amazon over 10 years ago.
It helps sellers get honest and credible reviews on their products and gives reviewers an incentive to voice their opinions.
You’ve probably seen the “Vine Voice” tag next to some reviews on the Amazon website.
These are people who have been invited into the program and are receiving products from Amazon to review. If they’ve received the product they’re reviewing for free, a “Vine Customer Review of Free Product” tag also appears along with the review.
You can’t apply to become part of the Amazon Vine program but you can make your chances of getting an invite good by doing certain things, which I will outline below.
How to Get an Amazon Vine Invite
It isn’t entirely clear what becoming a tester for Amazon involves.
The company doesn’t disclose much information on their process for choosing new reviewers, but I have found some guidelines online along with a few tips from reviewers who have been picked for the program.
To become eligible for an invite to the program, you have to already be a reviewer on Amazon. Meaning you have to start writing product reviews for the website now so that you can build up a good reviewer’s rank and a great reputation for yourself.
Just like with any sort of influencer position, the people whose opinions are valued the most get the most opportunities.
You don’t have to be one of Amazon’s top reviewers to get an invite (though that certainly won’t hurt), but you have to leave helpful and informative reviews that get upvoted by other customers.
It’s also important to know that the frequency with which you leave reviews isn’t everything as that doesn’t seem to be what Amazon is focusing on.
Rather stick to quality reviews on products that you have bought as this is good practice among product testers.
Amazon Vine Insider Tips
It’s hard to find out how many Vine reviewers there are and which products Amazon gives away for reviews, as this info isn’t made public.
However, a few reviewers have shared their tips on how things work when you want to become part of this program.
Here’s what you need to keep in mind:
1. Stick to one product category
One thing that everyone seems to agree on, is that it’s important to stick to one product category.
It would be even better if it coincided with your regular job, like being a chef and reviewing kitchenware.
That way, you can build yourself up as an authority in that area which will make more people trust your reviews. Customers don’t want to hear from a person that knows nothing about what they’re reviewing and Amazon doesn’t want that either.
2. Fill out your Amazon profile as much as possible
Create a great profile and make yourself available through other social channels.
As with any other influencer gig, it’s all about visibility.
People – and by extension sellers/Amazon – won’t take notice if you don’t make them look your way. Keeping up a good presence is key to getting that invite.
3. Study your chosen category
Amazon seems to be choosing Vine Voices according to category.
So if they need a new member in computer hardware and you’re reviewing gardening supplies then you’re simply out of luck.
Though there’s no information available anywhere on how or when Amazon chooses new members, nor whether they’re currently looking.
4. Quality is better than quantity when it comes to Amazon Vine
Your rank isn’t your guarantee.
Some people claimed to have gotten an invite with over 80,000 upvotes on the Amazon store, while there are others who got in with only 300 upvotes.
This is something that Amazon considers, to be sure, but it won’t be the only thing that gets you in.
5. Newer reviews get a bit of a bump.
There’s no clear indication of how Amazon structures their review system, but it is clear that more recent reviews get more screen time.
It’s a good idea to update some of your older reviews to give yourself a better chance of getting upvotes and getting noticed by Amazon.
6. Amazon Vine wants to hear your truths
Should you leave negative or positive reviews?
Vine reviewers say it doesn’t matter.
Amazon is interested in honest reviews that talk in detail about what you like or didn’t like about the product.
Ultimately the best advice I can give you here is to just keep at it. There’s no guarantee that you’ll be picked to test products for Amazon but following the advice above is your best shot at getting that lucrative gig.
Option 2: Sign Up With Amazon Review Sites
While getting the official invite from Amazon is something to strive for, there are easier ways of becoming an Amazon reviewer – namely through Amazon review sites.
These are sites that either help sellers get in contact with Amazon reviewers in order to send them their products to test or offer products at huge discounts for testers.
Amazon doesn’t regulate this process, but it’s completely acceptable to pick this route instead of having Amazon do it for you.
Amazon review sites you can consider joining:
This website offers discount vouchers on various items, from sports supplies to electronics, in exchange for reviews and was one of the first websites to do so.
It’s been featured on plenty of high-ranking media outlets and is one of the most popular Amazon review sites out there.
You don’t browse this website to apply for products to test as it was created to let the seller find you.
Simply sign up with AMZDiscover and indicate what type of products you review so that the site can hook you up with a seller who wants a review.
This is a great option for people who are starting out in the Amazon product review business.
You can join for free, browse their deals, and then get a coupon to redeem on the Amazon store.
They offer some big discounts and even free products every now and then.
Here’s another website where you can find free or heavily discounted items.
Once again, you’ll have to sign up and will get a coupon to redeem.
They have a wide range of products to choose from and, interestingly enough, you aren’t required to leave a review but it is welcomed.
This is a relatively new website that launched just a few months ago, but is already gaining a lot of traction.
They also offer discounted and free products for Amazon reviewers.
The Bottom Line
Learning how to become an Amazon reviewer is the easy part.
Finding sellers that are willing to send their products to you, however, will take time as you build up your reputation as a reviewer.
If time isn’t on your side, then you could always consider becoming a product tester. You’ll still be talking about the products you get but with actual people, plus you’ll get paid too!