Table of Contents
Avoiding Scams 8
Reducing Returns 10
What Causes Returns 10
Choosing the Right Supplier 12
Use Accurate Descriptions 15
Handling Returns 19
Third-Party Logistics 21
Refunds & Chargebacks 24
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Returns are probably the biggest problem you will ever face with drop shipping, because many drop shippers either don’t accept returns, take a long time to ship items, or require you to pay for another item to ship to the customer instead of accepting the item back and then sending out a replacement.
There are a few ways to combat this, and we’re going to talk about some of the best methods for reducing returns.
What Causes Returns
There are three main reasons people return items. There may be occasional situations that fall outside these three main areas, but these situations will likely be quite rare, so we are going to focus only on the most common causes.
Buyer error. This happens when buyers don’t read the description properly, choose the wrong size or color, etc. Your supplier probably won’t accept refunds due to buyer error, so it’s important to have a clear policy in place for situations such as these.
It’s a good idea to accept all returns, because this will create loyal buyers, but you may want to charge your customer for the return shipping on the item since it wasn’t your fault they made a mistake.
Description error. If there is an error in the description, it is ultimately your fault. Even if the description came straight from the supplier, it is up to you as the owner of your website to check all descriptions for accuracy before publishing an item for sale. So if a buyer receives the wrong item, always accept responsibility, even if you feel it isn’t your fault.
Damaged or defective item. Most suppliers will accept returns for damaged or defective merchandise. If they don’t, you shouldn’t be working with them. When you receive a complaint about damaged or defective merchandise, don’t ask the customer to pay any sort of shipping fees, and make the return as easy as you possibly can.
Returns are going to happen, no matter what steps you take. They’re just a fact of doing business. But there are ways to reduce returns, and the key is looking at the three reasons people typically return merchandise, and how to mitigate those as much as possible.
Now, let’s move on to the next section, which is where we will start looking at simple ways to reduce returns.
Choosing the Right Supplier
It’s especially important to choose the right drop shipping company right from the start in order to make everything go as smoothly as possible. So, let’s talk about some ways to choose the best supplier for your needs. Choosing the right company is probably the single most important thing you can do to make your business run as smoothly as possible, especially when it comes to returns.
First, always use a supplier in your home country, if possible. There may be times when this isn’t a possibility, because the suppliers in your company may be overpriced, have certain restrictions, won’t ship to other countries, or there may not be a supplier that has what you need in your country.
If you use a supplier in China, for example, shipping times will be longer and there may be more mistakes in the ordering process. But Chinese companies often have drastically lower prices than other suppliers, which can often outweigh those occasional issues.
If you must use an overseas supplier, be sure they have a good reputation, have reasonable shipping costs to the countries you want to do business in, and have a good return policy.
If you cannot find information about a company online, be sure to place a few test orders and have them sent to your address to be certain the orders are fulfilled correctly, that shipping costs aren’t too high, and that your order arrives in a timely fashion.Other Details
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