NEW FALL 2017 AMAZON RETURN POLICY
- Automatically authorizes returns (OK)
- Charge us for return shipping (NOT DESIRABLE)
- Drastically reduces the return handling window to 2 Days (NOT DESIRABLE)
- Automatically provides Full Refunds (NOT OK)
This new policy does not allow us to properly manage returns that are problematic. One example, more than we like, receive items in return that are not the item we sent. This can occur when a buyer…
- “SWAPS” an item on purpose for (cannot receive a return from original seller)
- “SWAPS” an item on purpose for (returns a different item we do not even sell)
- Returns an old used items for the new item the purchased.
- Returns an order to the wrong seller.
- Badly handles a return by discarding the packaging and cramming the item in a return vessel that is too small.
- Alters an item and then decides to return it because “Its Defective/Does Not Work”.
- Return empty shipments.
The new policy DOES NOT allow us to COMPLETELY REJECT a return. When any of the situations above occur it is our policy to…
- Not refund the order and do one of the following…
- Contact the buyer and allow them to retrieve their item.
- Contact the buyer and allow them to provide a label to forward their return to the correct seller.
- At our discretion simply return the item to the buyer.
- At our discretion refund at a 20% to 50% restocking fee.
The point being this new policy, especially the abbreviated processing window, is forcing us to refund items that we are not obligated to provide a full or partial refund for. This will only encourage more buyers to be less responsible with returns. We also notice that items returned to us as a merchant are in MUCH BETTER condition than items returned to FBA. this is because buyers know sellers inspect their returns. This will definitely change once buyers realize that they will be refunded no matter what the condition of the item. And Amazon offer the Seller no recourse to recapture wrongly automatic-refunded returns. Nor do we being given the time to manage a “Problem” return. Amazon will simply force a refund!
We do not understand what ABILITY, TIME AND PROTECTION we will have to handle returns that are NOT AS STRAIGHT FORWARD?
Will we be able to deny returns?
Our current policy is to charge a 20% restocking fee on all returns. Can this be “programmed” in our account for all auto-refunds that will occur?
Will we be able to DICTATE that buyers not use EXPENSIVE return services such as UPS? Our items will loose money if any service other than USPS is used.
We also work VERY hard to keep our shipping weights within USPS FIRST CLASS pricing. How can we make sure that buyers are returning items in a manner that does not cause us to have to pay more postage upon delivery because they ship back at a weight over the weight of the label Amazon provides?
Will we be able to deduct any additional return postage amounts due to buyer return packaging issues?
Will promotional codes be reversed when returns are refunded?
Will promotional codes be reversed when PARTIAL returns occur (Buy 1 Get 1)? If they return one that voids the discount.
We do not refund Expedited shipping. How can we withhold expedited fees from refunds?
We just had UPS deliver a shipment to a wrong address. Did not notice for 7 days after delivery when checking UPS invoices. The added UPS Return Cost escalated to $74.00 because the buyer instead rejected the original shipment! We shipped it for $25.00. What recourse do we have to RECAPTURE funds from the buyer? The buyer will never agree to be recharged as Amazon currently tells us we would have to obtain permission from the buyer. Of course Amazon does this for itself. But not for 3rd-party sellers. This is not fair.
We have had un-tampered empty shipments returned. Can we REJECT refunds in these cases? Especially when we are up against an automatic 2-DAY forced refund clock!
The above anomalies are not frequent but they are frequent enough that when they occur they do affect our bottom line. It only takes one $350 problem or empty return box to wipe out hard-earned profit from other orders.
THIS NEW POLICY WILL SIMPLY FORCE US TO RAISE PRICES! We are going to experience a decline in sales due to higher prices. But, we are not in the business of being un-profitable. We will have to immediately adjust prices to spread out the cost of return shipping.
For the record we are already currently responsible with our return and policy. We offer EXPEDITED REFUNDS for buyers who provide tracking. But we also inform the buyer in our policy that this PRIVILEGE will not be offered in the future if returns are received in a non-compliant condition. This has been a time saver for us and a convenience for our buyers while still offering us leverage with buyers to help ensure that our merchant fulfilled returns are received in near original condition.