Last week, we covered three of the essential steps you should take when you get one of those dreaded “Amazon Return” notification emails from Amazon. This week, let’s look at some additional things you should do when (and if!) the item has been returned to the warehouse.
Find out why the item was returned
Although looking at the report to find out why the item has been returned may or may not provide a good explanation (sometimes it is unknown or the buyer simply changed their mind), it does at least give you a starting point as to whether the item is resalable or not. To see this report, you will need to go to Seller Central and then look under Reports, select Fulfillment, and then click on Customer Concessions and finally on Returns. In some cases, you may find that the item just simply isn’t showing up on the report. When this is the case, you will have to open a ticket (fun, fun) and ask Amazon why the buyer returned the item.
Decide if you want to have the item returned to you
Once the item has made its way back to the warehouse, an Amazon warehouse work inspects the item to determine whether it can be put back out on the shelf to sell again. If they see that the item has been opened, they will automatically mark it as “Customer Damaged” and it can not be put back out for resell. It also can’t be put out for resell if it was returned due to it being defective. If the warehouse worker determines it hasn’t been opened and it is not defective, they will then typically add it back in with your inventory.
It is at this point that you need to decide whether to trust the warehouse worker or ask that the item be returned to you so that you can inspect it for yourself. Although it will cost you a small amount of money to have the item returned and then turn around and ship it back, this can keep you from getting negative feedback from another future buyer if they buy the item and there actually was something wrong with it. In some cases, the worker may have not noticed that there was a tear in the box or the shrink wrap was cut. If you decide that you won’t have the item sent back, double-check why it was returned and then make a note that it was returned in case there is a problem further down the line.
Determine if the item is defective
If the item is open and described as defective on the report, you will, of course, want to have it shipped back to you just to see what the problem is. As you may know, however, some buyers will say an item is defective because they want to get out of the shipping costs to return the item. When this happens, you can open a ticket with Seller Central and tell Amazon that the item was not defective. Make sure to include photos of the item in good condition as you will want to show proof that the buyer has simply said it was defective to get out of the return shipping costs.
When this is the case, Amazon will reimburse you for the cost, but only if the item has been opened. If the item has not been opened and is in good condition, they won’t give you a reimbursement since they know that you can ship it back to them and just sell it again.
What has your experience with Amazon Returns been? Leave a comment below.