Wednesday, 10 February 2016

Be an Expert - What to do when things go a bit pearshaped...

What to do when things go a bit pearshaped... 
Not all transactions are five-star perfect and from time to time things go wrong. A package doesn't arrive; something is damaged on receipt; or the size or colour are not quite what the customer expected. For new sellers especially, dealing with a problem transaction can seem daunting - so here are a few resources and suggestions. Experienced sellers, do please chime in with your tips and advice too!
Things you can do to help ensure happy customers include making descriptions and titles very clear and informative - remember people shopping on the mobile app won't necessarily see the description so your title should be clear what the item is and possibly its size/dimensions too. And it goes without saying that your main photo should be as clear and accurate as possible. Learn about photo dimensions and a whole bunch of other information about adding a listing here: https://www.etsy.com/uk/help/article/187 
Shop policies are vitally important. Not all customers will bother to read them but they are there to make it clear what the procedure is if there is a problem. Things like who is responsible for return shipping, how long the customer has to change their mind, under what circumstances you offer refunds and/or exchanges... most of this is covered by the EU Consumer Contracts Regulations (which replaced the old 'distance selling regulations') so do have a read and make sure your policies are fully compliant. Nice clear guide from Which? here: http://www.which.co.uk/consumer-rights/regulation/consumer-contracts-regulations
Communication is the key in any situation where the customer isn't happy. Usually the situation can be resolved amicably and you'll still get a good review. Here is the Etsy guide to the review system: https://www.etsy.com/uk/help/article/102
However, sometimes you will get a bad review out of the blue anyway and it's up to you whether you then pursue it and try to persuade the customer to change it. If you feel you must respond, try to do so in a calm, professional and factual manner. Remember your future customers will be reading what  you wrote. And never, ever, ever, go to the Etsy Forums and post details of your correspondence with your 'problem' customer - this will get your thread closed by Admin and it looks very unprofessional. Remember that a lot of buyers read the Etsy Forums too. If you must vent, do it in a private forum or offline! A private thread on the Dorset EtsyTeam forum is the best place to ask for advice.
If all else fails and the customer opens a case with Etsy and/or their payment processor, here is the Etsy Help guide to the process: https://www.etsy.com/uk/help/article/364 . Fingers crossed you never actually need to do any of this though!
Share your top tips for happy customers with the team - please tag them #DorsetTeamTips so we can find and retweet them :)

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