Best Strategies For Securing an Online Shopping Return
Sometimes online shopping results in receiving an item that is not quite what you wanted. Maybe you decide later that you don’t like the color; or it was a gift for a friend who would like to return the item; or you realize that you don’t need the item after all.
Whatever the reason, making an online shopping return to get a cash refund should not be too difficult. Right?
Wrong! Often times, it is very difficult to get a cash refund for your online shopping return. Let’s take a look at some factors that make the process challenging and tips that can make it easier.
Do Your Research
Return policies vary greatly between online merchants. Some are quite forgiving, others do not allow returns at all. Before you make a purchase, it is wise to take a moment to peruse the merchant’s website to find the return policy.
If no policy is clearly posted, contact the merchant asking them to outline the policy for you. Print and save the merchant’s response. In case you do decide to make a return later, understanding the return policy from the get-go will be very helpful for getting the right refund.
Fraud and the Consumer
Most transactions are done in good faith on the part of the consumer and the merchant. However, merchants tend to be wary of returns because out of the $219 billion worth of merchandise returned annually, over $11 billion is deemed to be fraudulent. For this reason merchants formulate and adhere to strict return policies.
However, merchants can also be guilty of fraud. Counterfeit websites may advertise and charge consumers for goods that don’t actually exist. Or, the goods that are delivered may be extremely late or not what was promised. In any of these cases, customers are urged to report consumer fraud and request a credit card protection refund.
These actions can be taken without outside assistance, but the process is often lengthy and complicated. Instead of enduring the frustration and irritation involved with filing paperwork for a bogus transaction, avoid stress altogether by hiring a consumer protection service such as eConsumer Services®.
With just a couple of clicks and by providing basic information about your case, we will ease your headache work to secure a cash refund on your behalf.
Considerations before Purchasing an Item
In a perfect world, every purchase would end in satisfaction and there would be no need to deal with harmless online shopping returns or harmful cases of consumer fraud. However, in the real world, returns and fraud are both a reality. Before making a purchase online, be sure to consider the following:
- Make sure that you know whether or not the retailer accepts returns and what the return policy is. Returns may be accepted anywhere from two weeks to a full year after the date of purchase.
- If returns are allowed, find out if you need a receipt or gift receipt for the return to be processed.
- Different retailers issue different types of refunds. Some will offer a full-price cash refund while others only give store credit at the lowest price the item was sold.
- A few online retailers will pay for return shipping, but this is an exception rather than a rule. Find out if you will be responsible for return shipping fees as this can be quite expensive, particularly if the merchant stipulates that you must buy insurance.
- Certain items cannot be returned once opened. Others can be returned in this condition but there may be “open box” or restocking fees in this situation. A good rule of thumb is to not open anything if you think you may return it later.
- If the merchant has a brick and mortar store but you make your purchase online, ask whether or not you can make an online shopping return in the store. Sometimes only specific items can be returned to a physical store while others must be returned online.
- Merchants often offer more flexible return policies during the holiday season, so if you are shopping for gifts then you may want to find out if there are different return policies during the holidays.
- Even merchants who guarantee satisfaction or your money back often have several stipulations. If you are buying from a merchant making this type of claim, chances are there are strings attached that make getting a refund more difficult than it appears.
Unfortunately, online shopping experiences do not always end how we would like them too. Ideally, you would be able to make a return and get a refund with relative ease. However, that is rarely the case.
Don’t go through all the hassle of securing a refund on your own. Let eConsumer Services® help. Simply fill out the form to the right. We’ll do all the hard work for you!