How to Overcome Alcohol Restrictions on Amazon UK

Picture of Adam Hindle

Adam Hindle

Managing Director



Time to Read

4 Minutes

laptop showing house of rum brand store

In the latter part of 2023, a premium vintage rum company were about to give up hopes of selling on Amazon.

Despite multiple attempts from various agencies for over a year, they were unable to break into the Amazon marketplace in the UK due to strict alcohol selling restrictions.

Frustrated and stuck in a seemingly endless loop of rejections, the brand turned to us for assistance.

With our expertise, we successfully launched them on Amazon just in time for the lucrative Black Friday and Q4 gifting season.

As a result, they sold over 700 bottles of their award-winning Diablo Rum throughout December 2023.

Overcoming Amazon UK’s restrictions on alcohol

There were three core steps that we took for the client in order to get their products approved on

1. Documentation Review

Before obtaining approval from Amazon, a meticulous review of all of their relevant documentation was a must.

This included scrutinizing:

  • Personal licenses
  • Premises licenses
  • Trademarks
  • VAT registration

Top tip: Ensuring the accuracy and completeness of these documents is critical to establishing the legitimacy of your business and demonstrating compliance with regulations.

2. Amazon Seller Account Setup

Creating a faultless Amazon Seller Account is the next crucial step. To do so, Amazon needs a precise alignment of all provided information with the documentation.

Cross-referencing details such as the account name, business address, and VAT registration number is pivotal to avoiding unnecessary delays during the application process.

Top tip: Consistency is key to passing Amazon’s scrutiny.

3. Category Approval Application

The alcohol category on Amazon is a restricted category and requires approval for selling. To gain approval, applicants must submit all pertinent documents for evaluation.

House of Rum faced difficulties, as repeated unsuccessful attempts seemed to lead to automatic rejections for subsequent applications, raising the risk of potential blacklisting.

Utilizing our status as a certified Amazon Ads partner, we tapped into extra resources to navigate these obstacles. Using these, we ensured a comprehensive review of House of Rum’s application, ultimately securing approval.

This success translated into a prosperous Q4 on Amazon UK, with continued potential from the platform.

Post-Approval Vigilance

With category approval secured, House of Rum could then start the journey of selling on Amazon. Vigilance over inventory levels, monitoring customer feedback, and proactive engagement in customer service are essential.

Additional marketing strategies – A+ Content, Brand Store, Brand Story and advertising – enhanced the brands visibility. This had a strong impact, especially during Black Friday and the Q4 gifting season.

If you want to make the most of Black Friday on Amazon, check out our top 5 tops here.

Start Your Selling Journey

Selling alcohol on Amazon demands a strategic and meticulous approach. House of Rum’s success story underscores the significance of thorough documentation, precise account setup, and strategic perseverance.

The key to thriving on Amazon lies in preparedness, consistency, and a helping hand from our industry-leading Amazon marketing team.

The Amazon team at Fluid Marketplaces goes beyond Content Optimization, Advertising and SEO with our Troubleshooting & Support service for Amazon.

Find out more here or get in touch today to discuss your challenges and opportunities on Amazon.

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