Returns and refunds are not the end of the world. Yeah. They're not fun. But it's part of doing business handling returns and refunds is one of the least fun aspects of running a business. But you know, it's even worse, not being prepared to deal with them, I'll go over exactly what you need to do when a customer comes to you asking for a return or refund. And I'll explain, of course, by way of an example, say a customer comes to you and says that they're dissatisfied with their order.
Remember the template you used for the FAQ page. It said, instead of returning items, you can contact us for a full refund. Why? Returns one counter to our emphasis on sustainability. Every return has a carbon footprint. So just tell us what went wrong, send along a pic, and we'll give you your money back in full. Then if possible, you can donate your product to a local charity or recycle it.
When we wrote this template, we chose these words very carefully. This return policy saves you the hassle of managing returns, and it can also help you get some money back from your supplier. The hassle saving part is obvious because you're telling customers to donate or recycle their products. You don't have to worry about receiving returns at your home address. The money saving part requires a little bit more explanation.
If a customer complains and wants a refund, the first thing you want to do is ask them why they want a refund. When you do this, be nice without your customer's feedback and photos, you will not get money back from your supplier. So when you're asking customers what went wrong, make sure your tone is positive and apologetic, not negative and suspicious. Let's go over a few possible customer responses. First, the customer could say that they just don't like the product. Now, unfortunately, this isn't a valid reason for a refund on AliExpress.
So that leaves you in the position to decide whether you'll just give the customer a refund anyway, or whether you'll fight them on the issue. Listen, this is not going to happen very often. And I strongly recommend that when it does happen, you give your customers a refund and move on. You never know. Sometimes the goodwill that you'll get from that great customer service will come back to you in the form of a repeat customer. It's happened to me. Okay?
Let's go back to some other possible customer responses. When you ask them what went wrong, the customer could say that the product was broken, defective, never arrived or didn't match the description. And if the customer says any of those things, you may be able to get money back from your supplier. Now, except in the case of a product, never arriving. If a customer has any of those other complaints, ask them for a photo. I repeat ask them for a photo. With the photo in hand, you can submit a dispute on AliExpress to get your money back from the supplier.
And I'll show you how to do that right now. Go to AliExpress and sign into your AliExpress account. Once you've signed in hover over your profile and click my orders. Here, you'll find your password orders on AliExpress. And within order description is a link that says open dispute. You have 15 days after a product arrives to your customer to open a dispute with the supplier. So to request a refund, click open dispute, and then under status, click open dispute again. Here, the seller will ask you if you want to refund, or if you want to return the goods now, because the customer has the goods at this point, click refund only and make sure in this drop down menu that you still have refund only selected.
The next question that AliExpress will ask you is if you received the item now, they're asking you this because you're the one requesting a refund, but the question is, did the customer receive the item? If the customer did not receive the item, then click, no. Then you're going to select the reason for refund, which in this case might be something like tracking problem or a customs problem or the wrong address. The refund amount reflects the amount that you paid for the product and here, where it says to write your request in detail, feel free to add any other details that the customer gave you when they sent their complaint. It never hurts to add more details rather than less.
After you filled that out, click submit. If the customer received the product and then complain that something was wrong, then you want to indicate that yes, the customer received the product for the reason for refund request, click, whatever the customer told you. And again, add details where the customer supplied those details. Enter the full amount that you paid the supplier for the product and importantly upload the evidence.
Make sure you attach the photo that the customer shared with you so that you can share that with a supplier. Now, the supplier will want to know if you want a refund, or if you want the supplier to resend the product to the customer, it's up to you to ask your customer. If your customer wants a replacement, I strongly recommend that you give them both the refund and a replacement product. In that case, you would order the replacement product on AliExpress and give the refund on Shopify. And I'll show you how to do that in just a minute. Yes, that's going to cost you extra, but it's going to be exceptional customer service that can potentially be rewarded in the form of repeat customers or word of mouth marketing.
Refunding a customer on Shopify is easy. And I'll quickly show you how to do that. In Shopify, go to orders and then click on the order that you want to refund below the order title, click refund, go to the refund amount and click the amount that the customer paid you. I recommend you check this box so that the customer gets notified that they're receiving a refund and finally click refund. If you think you can avoid refunds and returns altogether, you're setting yourself up for failure.
But if you implement this action plan for handling refunds and returns, you will set yourself up for repeat customers. Great job. Getting through this lesson. Now, go refill your coffee and I'll see you in the next lesson.