When you’re running a small business, every penny counts. So if you’re hit with a chargeback – which is when a credit card company takes money back from you for a purchase that was disputed by the customer – it can really hurt your bottom line. Thankfully, there are some steps you can take to reduce the chances of this happening. One great way to reduce or eliminate credit card chargebacks is to choose a secure payment processor like PayHawk. Keep reading to find out more about that, as well as how to eliminate chargebacks in other ways!
What is a credit card chargeback and how do chargebacks work?
A credit card chargeback is when a customer disputes a charge on their credit card statement. The customer contacts their credit card issuer and asks for a refund of the disputed amount. The credit card issuer then contacts the merchant and requests that they return the funds. If the merchant does not have enough funds to cover the chargeback, they may be charged a fee by their bank. Chargebacks are usually processed within a few weeks, however, it can take longer if the dispute is complex.
Chargebacks typically happen when a customer is not happy with a purchase they have made. For example, if they received damaged goods or if the item was not as described. They are also commonly caused by unauthorized purchases, fraud and incorrect billing.
While that may sound simple, there are actually many different parties involved in the chargeback process, making it a challenge at times to figure out the exact source of each chargeback. Banks, processors, merchants, card networks and third-party vendors all play a part. Then you have laws and data regulations to consider.
The problem is, chargebacks are not fun for customers and they are certainly not good for merchants as they can be costly and time-consuming to resolve. Incurred fees, loss of products, increased processing costs, possible merchant account termination – and even chargeback fraud – are all potential consequences of chargebacks.
What is chargeback fraud?
Credit card chargeback fraud occurs when consumers attempt to secure a refund through the chargeback process by making a false claim. This type of fraud can be costly for businesses, as it often results in the loss of merchandise or services. In some cases, it can also lead to account closures and legal action. Chargebacks are typically initiated by the cardholder, and the card issuer will then investigate the claim. If the issuer finds that the claim is valid, they will reverse the transaction and issue a refund to the cardholder.
Chargebacks can also be initiated by the merchant, but this is less common. Chargeback fraud can be difficult to detect, as it often relies on false or misleading information. However, there are some signs that can indicate that a chargeback may be fraudulent. For example, if a customer initiates a chargeback soon after making a purchase, or if they make multiple chargebacks for the same purchase, this may be cause for suspicion. Businesses can also check whether the customer’s billing and shipping addresses match. If they don’t, this could be an indication that the customer is attempting to avoid paying for their purchase.
Businesses should also be aware of any sudden changes in buying patterns, such as an increase in returns or cancellations. If you suspect that you may be a victim of credit card chargeback fraud, you should contact your bank or credit card issuer immediately. You should also keep all documentation related to the transaction in question, as this may be required to file a dispute.
Can you prevent chargebacks? – Yes! Let’s get into that next.
Chargebacks can be costly and time-consuming, so it’s best to take steps to protect yourself from them.
How to prevent chargebacks
Welcome to Preventing Chargebacks 101! Here are four super great tips around how to protect yourself from chargebacks:
1. Provide excellent customer service
One of the best ways to prevent chargebacks is to provide excellent customer service. If a customer is happy with their purchase, they are less likely to initiate a chargeback. Therefore, it’s important to first make sure your customers know exactly what they are purchasing, be present to answer any questions they have at the time of purchase and to respond promptly to customer inquiries, addressing any problems that may arise. It’s also a good idea to clearly state your return and refund policies on your website and at the point of sale. This way, customers will know what to expect if they are not satisfied with their purchase. By taking these precautions, you can help reduce the risk of chargebacks.
2. Respond to chargebacks in a timely manner
No one likes to get a chargeback, but they happen. Sometimes customers don’t recognize a charge on their statement and they contact their bank instead of contacting the merchant. Other times, there may be a valid dispute. In either case, it’s important to respond to chargebacks in a timely manner. By responding quickly, you can avoid having the chargeback go through and being hit with additional fees. You will also have a better chance of resolving the issue directly with the customer. Responding to chargebacks may not be fun, but it’s an essential part of doing business. By taking some time to understand the process and responding quickly, you can minimize the impact of chargebacks on your business.
3. Educate your customers about chargebacks
Another way to reduce or eliminate credit card chargebacks is by educating your customers about them. Let them know what types of activities can trigger a chargeback, and encourage them to contact you directly if they have any questions or concerns about a transaction. By doing this, you might successfully reduce the number of chargebacks that occur.
4. Use a secure payment processor – like PayHawk!
While there are a number of steps businesses can take to reduce the number of chargebacks they receive, using an integrated payment processing solution like PayHawk is often the most effective measure. This is because secure payment gateways offer fraud prevention tools and chargeback protection. Bottom line is, your customers’ data is safe when you arm your business with a secure payment processor because of how it obliterates the risk of fraud – a big source of chargebacks. This makes using a secure payment processor the best way to reduce the number of chargebacks a business receives.
Now that you know how to protect yourself from chargebacks, why wait any longer? PayHawk is here to help. We have over 15 years of experience helping businesses just like yours take control of their payments and boost their bottom line. Contact us today to learn more about our solutions and how we can help you reduce the risk of fraud and increase your sales. Thanks for reading!
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