So what can you do? Here are some useful tips…
• Get a signature and legible name to prove delivery whenever possible. Seems obvious but many merchants don’t bother with this.
• Publish your refund policy on your site – make it VERY obvious. Spell out the terms as simply as possible and use other messages on your site to draw your customers attention to them.
• Keep ALL your customer information historically – what they bought, when, how much. If they’re a regular repeat customer you’ll be able to prove how many legitimate transactions there have been – and on the disputed occasion, it’s likely they did, in fact, buy from you knowingly.
• Keep all lines of communications open with the customer – preferably by phone, then email so you have a timed/dated paper trail when you come to need it. Don’t stonewall them – that action will always work in their favour, not yours.
• If the product they ordered is on back order – tell the customer. Suggest alternatives – reassure the customer that you will not charge the card until the order has been shipped.
• Make cancellations easy. Adopt a no-strings-attached policy. If your customer does want to cancel make it happen quickly. They’re more likely to come back another time.
• Use 3DSecure, AVS, CVV2, CVC2 etc. Almost goes without saying but the take up is still far lower than it should be in the UK.
• Use clear descriptors that identify you on their card statements – add a phone number to it – make it easy for them to call you to resolve the dispute. JetPays Dynamic Descriptors may be a service you should consider – it’s very clear, very precise and makes it obvious where the transaction came from – for the customer.
• Stay on top of your social media accounts. Increasingly as merchants use social media to broadcast all the good things, some customers now use it to broadcast their grievances. As the merchant, you must acknowledge the grievance and do more than offering a sympathetic ear. Make change happen- if the grievance is genuine – solve it. Thank them for drawing it to your attention. Address their concerns. If you don’t they may act out of spite – and the damage to you will be far worse.