Why did i get a bad 'Negative Return Feedback Rate'?


here’s one for a mod/I have been selling many years with 100% positive feedback … So I see a 'Negative Return Feedback Rate, notice in my account.[ not a actual bad feedback on the feedback area] I load up the download and I see this from a customer about a order ’ ;Return reason: Inaccurate website description Customer comments: I thought this was a DVD ,Customer Comment
""I hope his 20% restocking fee is worth losing a customer.He is black balled by the 14 members in my family. ’ This is why the customer was angry.he had a return of a vhs he ordered and he stated ‘;Return reason: Inaccurate website description Customer comments: I thought this was a DVD ’ here is the listed item.-- Finding Nemo [VHS] - B0000AQZYM…/ and here is my description./video,vhs,TAPE, with clam shell case type jacket/// Clearly there was no issue of A ’ Inaccurate website description ’ So basically the customer made a buying mistake BUT THOUGHT IT WAS TOTALLY APPROPRIATE TO LIE’ as there was no inaccurate web description from me or Amazon clearly stating in many places the word ‘vhs’, Anyway returns happen, I get it, but by Amazons rules I charged him a 20% restocking fee. If the customer put this same statement on Amazon as a feedback most likely they would have taken it off as I was following Amazon’s rules and clearly the customer lied. Why is this negative feedback issue allowed to deface my record in light of that ? And why is it perfectly acceptable that the customer can lie as though I or Amazon
described the product unfairly. I also understand as a rule we have to refund and I don’t mind the refund, that is just money. But when it gets held against my reputation, because I was following the Amazon rules perfectly as I have done for the last 15 or so years. … quite frankly it is a bit unfair. Understand … Again it’s not a issue of money because I realize that returns and refunds happens. But clearly there is a principal issue here that needs to be addressed as I solved their issue is a quickly in a honest manner , wrote the customer a very nice respectful explanatory memo as to what the refund procedure was. It seems to me that if someone follows the Amazon rules and plays by the book that this type of customer retaliation should be struck from the record. At some point in time Amazon should give a good seller a little extra consideration in a case like this.Especially when it is clear that the customer lies that we inaccurately described the product, or Amazon inaccurately described the product rather than just to say they made a buying error. Would a moderator from Amazon be kind enough to address this issue for me?
thank you

Edited by: retrolink-2 on Mar 16, 2016 5:28 AM

Edited by: retrolink-2 on Mar 16, 2016 5:30 AM


Not a metric that has any weight. Just annoying.


The Amazon principle seems to be flawed as this metric is to supposedly help sellers with feedback and more importantly manage returns. Since any one who wants a return is already not happy then this metric shows that unhappiness. When you follow policies and get a big X in red in is very annoying. Mine finally went away this week and I got it from a non-return return.


yes I realize that its just a beta metric . It’s still a practical issue as principal.

Edited by: retrolink-2 on Mar 16, 2016 5:34 AM


gr8t153 wrote ‘The Amazon principle seems to be flawed’
You are 100% correct . thank you


Let it go. It is an unbeatable metric. In case you had missed it, there are many long discussions about it you might want to skim here.

Buyers who ask for returns are dissatisfied by definition. All sellers are going to have lousy metrics for this. If you hadn’t charged a restocking fee, your buyer still might say he was dissatisfied. After all, he hasn’t yet gotten the DVD he originally tried shopping for.


P.S. As an aside, I will lay the blame for your buyer’s mistaken VHS purchase largely on Amazon and its horrendously bad search function. If you combine that with mobile shopping, you sometimes really don’t know what you’re buying. I’ve been buying here since the '90s and started selling in 2004. Point being, I know the site pretty thoroughly. But within the past few months I have made two purchases on amazon that were not what I’d thought, because of the misleading search results.


to barb
there is some justification on your comment on phone ap sales vs sales on a regular pc. Due to abbreviations and less info their could be issues in consumers getting mixed up. In this case the letters[vhs] were in the heading of the description but this could happen in many other cases. Also, I guess with a word like vhs some younger buyers might not know what that even means, Almost like a word like ‘uhf converter’ . How many people heard of it. I , however remember them. might be a collectable now.


Ha, I haven’t thought about UHF in a long time! I remember when UHF channels were brand new. :slight_smile:

Just FTR, here are two examples of my amazon shopping mishaps:

  • I searched for a specific, discontinued model of a small appliance. Amazon’s search took me directly to a page with an image of the model I wanted. I really don’t remember if I closely double-checked the title or other details. I purchased from a 3P seller, and I received a later model. Before making any assumptions about the seller, I went back to review the page. Sure enough, although the product image was of the older model, the product title and description did indicate it was the newer one. Should I have seen that or scrutinized the page more closely? I suppose so, but when you get only one search result and a big photo is staring at you, I think most buyers would conclude that’s the one. (FTR, I kept it and didn’t bother the seller, although I sure would like to find the older model.)

  • I was shopping in the Amazon prime pantry for an item in a specific flavor. It was out of stock. Rather than tell me that when I searched, amazon simply gave me a single search result, and it was to a +different+ flavor. The label is virtually identical, with just a slightly different shade of color on it. In that case, I think I noticed and got it out of my cart just before purchasing. But I can imagine that your buyer could have similarly searched specifically for “such-and-such DVD” and his search results might have gone right to your VHS page instead, where it might never occur to him VHS is even a possibility.

I think there are plenty of ways around here for buyers to mess up honestly. I don’t think many are deliberately scamming or lying.



It was probably the 20% restocking fee that made the buyer mad enough to comment. I know we are allowed to charge that in this situation, but many people dislike being charged for “restocking”–especially because they imagine someone just opens a box and puts the item back on the shelf.


I realize that but i think because i followed amazon rules the bad metric should not be allowed. Also in regard to buying errors comment I realize what barb was saying but the item had the word vhs at the end if it. All i am saying is ,yes buyers make mistakes in buying and want refunds all the time but i do not understand why they just don’t admit it. Most do admit it…but not this customer. Maybe they think it’s ok to disparage a honest seller so they will get a quicker refund. The refund would have been issued even if they said that they made a mistake.


But if it happened as I described, they might not know or believe that they had made a mistake, so how could they admit it? All they would know is they searched for the DVD and clicked “buy” on the result. I don’t think it’s appropriate to base restocking-fee decisions on whether the buyer believes us more than believing their own perceptions. The return is the same. Take the emotion out of it.



When the beta metric comes out of beta and starts affecting… it will definitely matter. We have plenty of times when its the buyer’s fault, they destroy the product and/or send it back poorly packaged/damaged. And taking a deduction usually means bad feedback from them, while Amazon CS generally tells us to take it as a loss when we report the negative feedback.

We also get FBA inventory become “unsellable” because the buyer damages the product, is granted a return…

Edited by: ImportExport on Mar 16, 2016 10:38 AM


Yeah you are right. Going back to listing new stuff today. Thanks for all the input


I disagree. I’ve found that being upfront and honest with people goes a long way. When this metric first came out, I was ticked off, but I have since improved my email templates for dealing with returns and haven’t had an issue with this. Of course, everyone will get some negatives, but I think keeping it below the 10% threshold is totally doable.

Of course, I don’t charge a re-stocking fee. In a case like the OP’s, I would have not refunded shipping and I’d ask what was wrong with the original listing “so that I can get it corrected”.

Edited by: Lights At Lowes Island on Mar 16, 2016 12:22 PM

Edited by: Lights At Lowes Island on Mar 16, 2016 12:23 PM


What I find is they report a negative experience when buyers find out they actually have to RETURN THE ITEM, rather than just have the seller refund them.
I had one where the buyer stated he never left the negative comment, yet the metric showed as a hit, and his transaction was the one “hit” it counted.
Flawed to say the least.


useless and inaccurate metric - so it will probably be around forever

I get 2 return requests in 90 days. Like the OP mentioned there was no negative feed back nor any email from the customer stating dissatisfaction of any kind. So no opportunity to make the buyer happy.

Mathimatically this metric would only be helpful/meaningful if a seller had numerous returns (10+ per week).


I’m surprised no one provided the real answer…HOW IN THE HECK ARE YOU STILL SELLING VHS TAPES??? I thought that was the funniest part of this post. That warrants negative feedback by itself. The customer was probably shocked VHS TAPES were still made.

Ok I’m done. I agree, I’m tired of the Amazon BS too…and we just started. Ha, we are the only seller of an item and we aren’t even shown in the buy box or detail page!

closed #18