Working as an Amazon seller, you must be ready to deal with cancellations, claims returns, negative reviews, and refund requests in the best possible manner. Failing to do so can harm your account’s reputation, affect your ranking, and even leads to account suspension in the worst cases.
FBA returns, refunds, and inquiries are taken care of by the Amazon. The world-class support team is working in the Amazon, offering services to handle returns, refunds, and inquiries.
Here we will discuss primary considerations to prevent such issues and keep your business on track:
Minimum Cancellations, Returns, and Recommended Refund Policies
The foremost consideration is that you need to make sure that your product fulfills the necessary cancellation, return, and refund policies of Amazon.
Returns: Why They Occur and How to Handle Them
When a customer requests a return on an item, you need to take the necessary steps to manage this return and restrict such occurrence in the future.
Check the Reason for the Return
First of all, check the reason for the return. For this, you can run a report in your Seller Central Account.
- Login to your Seller Central Account
- Go to the “Reports” tab, and select “Fulfillment,” then “Customer Concessions,” and click on “Returns.”
- Generate the report and select the period in which your customer returned the item.
- Search item in the report and find the reason for the return.
Keep a Record of the ‘Return’ Notifications
If a seller sold the item through Prime shipping, Amazon would issue a refund without waiting for the customer to return it. So, it may take up to 45 days to complete the return process. In case the customer has not completed the return process within 45 days limits, you can request Amazon for reimbursement. Doing so, you will be required proof of the return notification.
Protect Your Seller Feedback Score
Contacting the buyer and apologize for the negative experience, regardless of feedback, is a good idea. If the seller approaches the buyer and asks if the return took place will reduce the risk of leaving negative feedback. The email you sent to the customer for showing concern may convince the customer that you are a quality seller and did not leave negative reviews or feedback.
“Answering customer queries can help prevent negative reviews.”
Besides, monitor your customer reviews regularly. It helps you identify inventory issues, areas of improvement in product features, and listing content.
Have Returned Items Sent Back to You for Inspection
When an item returns to you, a warehouse worker will inspect it to see whether it should be marked as “Fulfillable” or “Unfulfillable.” If the customer tried the product, the worker would mark it as “Customer damaged,” or the customer might consider it “defective.” Such products will not send back to inventory. Don’t leave it to the warehouse worker. Double-check the returned item.
Consider returning fewer Refunds
Amazon has a policy for refunds of certain products without being returned by the customer. Check the Amazon Policy to save the costs of the returned item.
Note it: a seller can cancel orders at any time before shipment. If a customer wants to request cancellation, the process may slightly different depending upon which stage cancellation request has been processed.
Here’s how you can cancel orders before shipment:
Canceling Orders That Have Not Been Shipped
- Sign in to Seller Central Account
- Go to the “Manage Orders” tab and click on “View Your Orders.”
- Browse through the order manually or search the specific order through advanced search options.
- Click on “cancel order.” A screen pops up and chooses the reason for cancellation from the menu appeared and then hit submit.
What If a Customer Wants to Cancel an Order After Shipping?
Cancellation before shipment is easy to handle. You can access the customer’s contact information within the order ID or the seller’s orders list. As mentioned above, you need to find a specific order. Press “cancel order” and provide the reason for cancellation.
Customers have about 30 minutes to cancel the placed order. If a product is already on its way, it cannot be revoked.
If you come across such a situation, you should contact the customer and tell him that the order is on its way, the customer can return the item for the refund.
Canceling Multi-Channel Fulfillment Orders
Keep in mind that the MCF orders only be canceled in the planning stage. The following process may be followed to cancel the multi-channel fulfillment:
Trace the specific order and choose the “Order ID” to find out the order details. Click on “Cancel This Order” within it. You will find MCF order details too.
Suppose you are out of stock and cannot ship the order. It will keep the “unfulfillable” status, and the customer cannot cancel the order of such a product, which is marked as “Unfulfillable” and vice versa.
Canceling a Fulfillment by Amazon Order
Amazon FBA sellers have the edge over other sellers to cancel the order at any stage, regardless of whether it is pending or “Unshipped” status.
For doing this, follow these steps:
- Contact Amazon Seller Support
- Share the specific order ID to the representative.
- Provide the ASIN for the order(s) and many items in each ASIN.
- Give the appropriate reason for canceling the orders.
You can cancel FBA (Fulfillment by Amazon) orders at any time, regardless of whether the order has a “Pending” or “Unshipped” status.
The Seller Support agent will share the cancellation confirmation number and notify the customer regarding the cancellation.
Other Cancellation Issues
A few other considerations to handle cancellations are as under:
Orders marked as “Pending” cannot be canceled.
The cancellation option will work once the customer has verified the payment method.
If the customer cancels the order mistakenly, it cannot be reinstated. You should inform them to re-order the item.
A refund can process through two options:
Contact Amazon Directly:
Customer contacts Amazon support, and he gets refunds directly from Amazon. They charge a fee equal to the sales revenue you made on the original purchase.
Contact Seller Directly:
If a customer approaches you for refunds, direct them to the Amazon, so Amazon calculates the return, including tax and extra charges.
Amazon’s A-Z Guarantee protects the shoppers who purchased their products through FBM (Fulfillment by Merchant). The A-Z Guarantee provides timely delivery, condition, and return experience of sold products. If the customer and the buyer cannot settle the claim, Amazon sorts out the A-Z claim.
Best practices for customer returns
Returns are part of the buying experience. It mainly depends on the seller how he handles it; handle well makes the customers delighted and turn him to repeat customer and mishandling the return affect your reputation as a seller on Amazon. In severe cases, it leads to suspension also.
I am discussing best practices for returns management service. Consider this step. It will help you improve your feedback, ensure the customer’s pleasant experience, and minimize A-Z Guarantee claims.
- Design your return policy on the same principles upon which Amazon’s Return Policy laid.
- Be careful while using codes: If you have refunded the customer, then indicate that you have refunded.
- Use duplicate Request if you have already closed another request for the same product or approved the claim.
- Using inappropriate codes will affect your return dissatisfaction rate.
- The return time-frame is critical. The time-frame starts from the date of the product’s arrival instead of the order or shipment date. If you cannot track, the return window begins from the expected delivery date.
- As a Seller, you must answer the return request within 48 hours from the time the requests registered by the customer. It had better respond along with either approve or close the request within the Manage Returns page of Seller Central.
- Customer-seller communication must be professional and time-bound. You should inform the customer regarding refunds status through the Buyer-seller Messaging service. Keeping the customer informed will give a positive gesture that his requests are moving towards resolution.
- Defective or damage claims by the customers should resolve either with refund or replacement. The resolution must be painless. If your product is ineligible or exempt for refund or replacement, provide a pre-paid label; otherwise, issue refunds immediately after receiving the original.
- Online buyers are more likely to prefer easy shopping processes. Though the seller needs to get a picture of the customer’s damaged items, the online buyer wants a hassle-free shopping experience. The more friction they have to deal with, the more dissatisfied they will be.
Amazon is concerned about its customer experience in the Amazon store. Sellers should be extra cautious about managing returns, refunds, and claims on their products. Your brand reputation depends upon the number of negative reviews on your listing, customer’s feedback, and how the seller manages all this. Design your return policy effectively and religiously follow the Amazon Returns Policies to avoid suspension.