Returns, refunds, and cancellations are inevitable when you are selling products. Whether you are selling online or have a physical store, this will be part of the issues that you will face. How you deal with this will greatly impact your profits and metrics. Thus, it is important to adhere to Amazon’s policies and create a set of rules to avoid suspension on Amazon. Here are some Amazon tips to help you get started.
Amazon’s Return, Refund, and Cancellation Guidelines
As a guide, here is Amazon’s minimum policy on returns, refunds, and cancellations:
- For subscriptions between 2 months and 5 months, customers must be allowed to cancel an order and receive a full refund within 7 days of payment (initial and renewal).
- Subscriptions of 6 months or greater, a customer should be allowed to cancel their order and receive a full refund: (a) within 7 days of initial payment and (b) within 30 days of payment at renewal.
- For all subscription lengths, customers should be allowed to cancel an order and receive a full refund if the product is defective or very different from the item described in the product listing.
- For all subscription lengths, a customer should be allowed to cancel their order and receive a full refund at any time. This applies to availability or any changes in the materials or terms and conditions related to the product use.
How to Handle Returns, Refunds, and Cancellations
Your policy on returns, refunds, and cancellation should be clearly stated on your website or on your listing. This makes customers aware of what they need to do in case they need to return a product or request for a refund. In addition, you should have a clear process on how to handle these issues. Here are a few tips:
- Make sure that you let Amazon FBA know that you would like to receive all returned items. This prevents Amazon from reselling your products as “new.” There are instances that Amazon resells even the damaged or defective items. This would then reflect on your brand negatively.
- Check the reasons why your products were returned. This helps you audit the top reasons and provide a solution. For example, if your customers complain that there is always one item missing or a factory defect, you may need to reach out to your supplier. To check on the reasons, go to your Seller Central account and do the following:
- Go to Reports tab, choose Fulfillment > Customer Concessions > Returns.
- Change the date range based on until when you’d like to see the reports (eg. 30 or 60 days)
- Download the report then filter according to reason.
- You may want to run this report monthly and send a deep dive report to your supplier.
- Contact Amazon for claims and cancelled orders. Make sure that you let customers know that they need to go through Amazon’s cancellation process, which includes the subscription manager on Amazon.com. For refunds and returns, customers can either contact Amazon or the seller. A seller should not directly contact a customer with regard to cancellations or refunds.
- Make sure you have a clear policy when refunding customers. For example, it is better to have a returnless policy to save on product return costs. You may want to require a photo of the defective item as a proof then just tell your customers to keep or dispose of the item.
- Create a customer service message template that lets you and other members of your team respond to customer messages. It is best to have a template that demonstrates your brand’s voice and a standard process when handling customer’s requests for refunds, returns, and cancellations. It is also important that your responses are professional yet personable.
Keeping track of your returns, refunds, and cancellations allow you to manage your inventory and make sure that your products are of high quality. Here is more information on Amazon’s returns, refunds, and cancellation policy.
If you need help in contacting Amazon for your claims, give us a call and we’d be glad to help you out.
“How you think about your customers influences how you respond to them.”— Marilyn Suttle, CEO of Suttle Enterprises, LLC