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Thread: Refunds from your online shop

  1. #1
    Moderator IanF's Avatar
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    Refunds from your online shop

    For all the members with online shops what is your policy on refunds?
    Then if you refund someone who paid by credit card do you pay out the nett received or the total received?
    We are getting requests for products ordered Thursday and the customer wants them Monday it takes 1 day to cut and then we post and that takes 3-4 days depending on the post office plus they have paid. We just do it as fast as we can.
    I haven't received any request yet so I am trying to prepare if this does happen.

    On the printing side we refund or reprint if we made a mistake, if the customer asks for a reprint because of their mistake we then the if they ask we reprint price to about 50% as a goodwill gesture? With returns is we just throw them in the recycle bin as they have no value
    Only stress when you can change the outcome!

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    Gold Member Mark Atkinson's Avatar
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    Hi IanF,

    If I'm not mistaken I remember you saying you use PayFast on your site? If so, I'm pretty sure they have some form of refund policy. I'd recommend just reading up a bit on their site. I haven't had to do any refunds just yet but I would do it as follows:

    - Pay out whatever PayFast will pay out. If they're only prepared to pay out the net received amount, then I'd recommend you pay out only what you received.
    - Refund minus shipping costs (assuming the product has been posted already). We make it very clear that returns/refunds are accepted as long as the customer bears the cost of shipping the product back.

    Also, have you made it clear on your site the time it takes for printing/cutting as well as time for postage? It's always good to give yourself a bit of a buffer as far as shipping times are concerned, particularly if you're dealing with the SAPO. If it is clearly stated on your website the various times it can take to get the product to the customer, then I don't think the customer has any grounds for demanding a refund. You can, of course, still provide one out of goodwill.
    If, however, you don't have times clearly stated on your website, it's another story.

    Also, not quite sure how the new Consumer Protection Act is going to fit into all of this. Anybody care to provide some insight?
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  3. #3
    Moderator IanF's Avatar
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    Mark
    Thanks for the reply. I searched the Payfast site and couldn't find anything about refunds. Just looking at our t&cs we will have to spell out our policy more clearly.
    With the CPA I read it as when you custom make something for the rules for returns are a lot less severe than for standard products. But you must have the rules spelt out.
    Only stress when you can change the outcome!

  4. #4
    Gold Member Mark Atkinson's Avatar
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    I just contacted PayFast's live support out of curiosity to ask it and it seems I was wrong. The support guy told me that they do not process any refunds, it is something we have to do from our side. I was so sure that I read something regarding refunds. Perhaps they have changed it.

    Just reconsidering it, I would probably give people a full discount of the purchase price. You might spark a few negative feelings towards your business if you dock them for a hidden supplier-side charge such as credit card transaction fees. Seeing as a good business shouldn't need to provide that many refunds, it's just a few Rands you have to sacrifice in order to maintain goodwill towards your business.
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  5. #5
    Moderator IanF's Avatar
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    Thanks Mark you are right about the refund and not get the customer upset. Luckily haven't had that yet.
    Only stress when you can change the outcome!

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