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Credit Card Chargebacks: Common Causes
Credit Card Chargebacks: Common Causes
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Written by Training BLVD
Updated over a week ago

Here are some of the most common chargeback claims:

  1. Fraudulent transactions

    If someone sees a charge from your business but did not buy anything from you, it could mean that there’s fraud at play. This will likely instigate a chargeback.

  2. Technical problems

    If your website isn’t working properly, or one of your staff fumbled something in the checkout process (user error), your client may have been accidentally charged for something they didn’t intend to buy. Be sure to integrate a reputable POS and e-commerce system that has an easy-to-navigate checkout process.

  3. Credit not processed

    Another common reason for chargebacks is a mishap (or confusion) during the return or credit process. That is, a client returns something expecting a refund and doesn't see that credit in their bank account right away. To help avoid this, make sure you have a reliable system in place for handling returns and credits. Also, make a point to clearly state your returns or cancellation policy to clients when they’re buying or returning something online or in person. That way everyone is on the same page.

  4. Issues with professional services

    Sometimes clients issue a chargeback if they’re dissatisfied with a product or service for one reason or another. Chargebacks for professional services can be the most difficult to arbitrate for this reason, as the quality of service is widely subjective.

  5. Unrecognizable business name

    One of the most common reasons for chargebacks is billing clients with an unrecognizable business name. Let’s say your business sells coffee and bagels. Your shop is called “San Francisco Bakeshop,” but your business’ name is registered as S.F.B. Enterprises. When customers see a mysterious charge by S.F.B. Enterprises, customers may unintentionally initiate a chargeback for what they believe was a fraudulent purchase. Avoid customer confusion by having clear, consistent branding.

  6. Cancellation and Refund Policy

    It is a best practice to have your Refund and Cancellation Policy listed on your website and social media pages. An easy-to-find link at the top of your site where customers can find information about who to contact and speak with if they are dissatisfied with a service would like to discuss a refund or credit, and/or cancel a service or recurring membership (if applicable).

Suggestions on How to Prevent Chargebacks

Although there’s no guaranteed way to prevent chargebacks, merchants can take some steps to reduce certain chargebacks. This includes:

  • Have a clear, easy-to-understand Refund and Cancellation Policy linked on your website and social media pages that is surfaced online and in-store

  • Have a recognizable business name on credit card statements

  • Train employees on best practices for card-present and card-not-present transactions such as checking the Driver’s License ID that corresponds with the name on the card. This is especially important for first-time customers.

  • Accurately describe items and services

  • Respond to customer service issues promptly and courteously

  • If you plan to initiate a series of recurring payments, be sure to disclose all terms to clients prior to the purchase

  • Check customers in and out so you have a timestamp and proof of purchase in your software site that can be captured in case you receive a chargeback.

Remember: If you do get hit with a chargeback, it’s important to respond to your bank or payment processor promptly. Many banks process the chargeback for the customer if a merchant does not respond in the allotted time.

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