Having a refund policy is a must when it comes to selling anything online. You need to make sure to have this clearly defined on your site. Do you give refunds? If so, what is required? What is the time limit?
These are the processes you need to have in place. And once in place, you need to make sure it is easy for the customer. You may be asking why. Well, I know from experience as a consumer that find refund information isn’t always easy on a site. I suspect that in some cases, merchants have designed it purposely that way.
Face it. Refunds will happen. That is the nature of selling. And by making it easy for someone to request a refund, you could very easily get that customer to return for a future purchase.
The WooCommerce Smart Refunder Extension
Now there are services and other plugins that do this for you. Or or you can create your own system using simple contact forms, etc. But if you are just starting to look at the process for your new store, or you need to change an element of an existing process, this might be just what you need.
Initially, you will want to configure your storewide settings. These include the status of orders where you will accept a refund as well as an auto-approve option.
You can also offer a coupon as the refund and let the customer choose between the coupon and cash back. And lastly, as reflected from your refund policy, you will want to address the refund period.
Once the plugin is activated and the settings completed, if the customer goes into their account page and views their orders, they will find an option to request a refund. This will only appear on the orders that fall within the refund period.
As a customer, if I click on it, I get this simple form to fill out. Since I have the coupon option toggled on, you can see that here.
Interestingly, they also have an option to request a partial refund. There are some things to think about with this option and they should also be reflected somewhere in your refund policy. Note that this extension does not have a way to hide this option so be prepared to consider partial refunds.
Once the refund request has been submitted, it will be noted on the order.
The customer will receive this email. As the store administrator, you will also receive an email with similar information.
Refunding the Order
As the store admin, you will now find any orders that have requested refunds on your Orders page. On the right, under actions, you can manage or reject the refund.
When we click on the action, we have the option to fill our the refund amount and send the coupon code, or reject it.
If I do send the refund, it will be not be noted as refunded on the orders page. (This will be noted in the full order page and in the order notes.)
If I chose to refund 100%, the customer will receive two emails, first the one of refund notification. I have included a personal note that shows next the refunded amount.
And the second email with the coupon code.
Of course, this would have looked differently if rejected, and you would want to follow some guidelines of your own if you are going to reject it.
Just a final couple of notes. If you would prefect to give store credit instead of a coupon, you can use the WooCommerce Smart Coupons to offer that option.
And if you want to offer instant refunds, make sure your payment gateway offers it as well. If you don’t know, you can go into your Payment methods on your WooCommerce settings and click on the “?” for the payment method and it will let you know if it include returns.
So if you are just starting your shop and want to include an easy way to offer refund requests or are just looking for a solution to a current need, you can check out the WooCommerce Smart Refunder extension here.