Amazon's Choice has been described as "highly rated, well-priced products available to ship immediately" and that's all we knew for years.
We didn't know who picked the products or if anyone was getting paid, until two US senators started asking questions.
Now, FOX43 finds out what makes a product "Amazon's Choice."
You can search for almost anything on amazon and you'll end of up with dozens of results.
A lot of searches will bring you to products labeled as "amazon's choice."
US Senators Bob Menendez of New Jersey and Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut started asking how products get the Amazon's choice badge.
The pair wrote a letter to Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos listing 6 questions related to transparency about how it all works.
Amazon has answered all of the questions giving us more insight into what goes into making a product "Amazon's Choice."
Amazon says a product gets that badge based on things like popularity, available inventory, customer reviews, ratings, pricing, customer service contacts, return rates, and product quality.
Also adding that 56% of Amazon's choice products are from third-party sellers.
Though Amazon has confirmed its employees do *not personally review the products.
The senators also wanted to know if sellers can pay or apply to become an amazon choice product or if Amazon gets financial compensation.
amazon's answer to those questions is no.
Amazon also answered a bunch of questions relating to fake reviews including how it monitors them and punishes people who post them.
Senator Bob Mendenez says after reading Amazon's responses, he's left with more questions than answers.
FOX43 was sent the following statement from the senator's office:
“Amazon’s lackluster response fails to provide the transparency consumers expect in order to fully understand the process for determining how it awards the company’s coveted Amazon Choice moniker to two million products each month. Moreover, the response fails to provide evidence or assurance that it’s ‘choice’ recommendations meet quality and safety standards.”
What is clear is that Amazon does not consider product quality, as shoppers would expect, to be any more important than other factors, such as how many units are in their warehouse. I am left with more questions than answers and have less confidence that Amazon Choice is helping shoppers choose the best quality products available.”
Here are all the questions and responses from Amazon:
If you have a story you want me to look into, FOX43 wants to find out.