Who is responsible for consumer returns in dropshipping?

Consumer returns

 2 min read

Every businessman, regardless of whether he runs an online store or a traditional store, must take into account the customer’s right to return goods. Customers choose to return a product for various reasons. The most common reasons for returns are : non-compliance of the product with the description, mismatched size/color/texture of the product, poor quality of the product…. It also happens that the customer frowns or the product turns out to be simply unnecessary for him. In this case, we will have a consumer return.

Consumer return is defined by the Law of May 30, 2014 on consumer rights. We read in it that a customer who has entered into a contract at a distance, i.e., for example, has made a purchase in an online store, may withdraw from it within 14 days without stating a reason and without incurring costs. The goods must not be used. To withdraw from the sales contract, it is enough to make the appropriate statement. Most often, the store offers a ready-made form that makes the return process easier and faster. The time to make a return begins on the day of delivery. Retailers may refuse a return if it is submitted after the statutory deadline, or the returned product is used/destroyed. In this case, the amount of the return may be reduced accordingly.

A store operating under dropshipping is obliged to accept a consumer return and pay the customer the money due plus the cost of delivery (equivalent to the cheapest form of shipping available in the e-store). Sometimes the dropshipping wholesaler agrees to accept returns on behalf of the seller. There are then three solutions in such a situation:

  • The wholesaler keeps the product, returns the cash to the store and adjusts the invoice
  • The wholesaler keeps the product and retains the funds for future transactions with the store
  • The wholesaler agrees to store the product for a while, until the store identifies another customer

Each e-store has its own return policy. The major market players allow customers to return goods without giving a reason for up to 30 days and at no extra cost. Keep in mind that the quality of customer service is one of the most important factors affecting a company’s image and customer loyalty. A return policy is therefore very important for customer experience, which for many shoppers is an important factor influencing the decision to buy again from the same store.

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