Ins and Outs of the Credit Card Dispute Process

Unfortunately for merchants, you’ll likely have to pay some fees regardless of whether or not you win in the dispute. The process can also take months, and it’s designed to protect consumers, meaning the odds of winning most dispute cases aren’t in your favor. Chargebacks are, unfortunately, part of life as a business owner.  But the good news is there are simple ways to protect yourself and avoid getting into this situation in the first place:

  • Be clear about your shipping return policies, and make it easy for the customer to contact you. Sometimes a chargeback will result when the customer wanted to return something and couldn’t, or when a customer thinks they aren’t going to receive an item that’s en route. Being open about this information and easy to contact can help reduce the chances of a chargeback.
  • Also be clear and honest about your product, so there are no surprises for your customer. This can also cut back on returns.
  • Keep detailed records, follow all processing protocols, and hang onto all receipts.
  • Make sure your customers know what name will appear on their billing statement. If they don’t recognize your business, they might think they’ve been fraudulently charged and begin a credit card dispute.

Chargebacks are both damaging and tedious, so you don’t want to have too many of them. Not only do they represent lost revenue, but they also dent your reputation and can get you classified as a high-risk merchant if you have too many. Your best bet is to understand the option you have when you’ve been hit with one and take steps to reduce the chances of a chargeback in the first place.