Free Return Request Form Template and 12 Common Causes of Returns

1. Return Request Form Template by PerformFlow

A Return Request Form is a document used by sellers or stores to process product returns for replacement or refund. This return request form is primarily submitted by customers who have determined that the product is incompatible with them or that they do not like it and wish to return it to the store or seller. With Google Forms, you can quickly customize our return request form template.

Please “Make a copy” before editing this return request form template. Thank you.

2. What Causes Consumers to Return Their Purchases?

Unmet expectations, faulty or damaged products, and improper fit are the three most frequent reasons for the return of purchases. Any of these problems may result from mistakes made by the merchant or uncontrollable external factors.

It’s critical to comprehend why customers return items because these factors frequently produce much more detrimental chargebacks. The cause of friendly fraud chargebacks can occasionally be a customer who is dissatisfied with their purchase. Eliminating that unhappiness stops both returns and chargebacks.

Understanding the possible causes of customer dissatisfaction can help you identify any chargeback issues you may be experiencing and point out areas where your customer service and other business operations need to be improved.

Although it’s impossible to know every customer’s thoughts, the following are some of the more frequent causes of returns:

2.1. The customer placed an incorrect size or product order

Customers frequently order the incorrect item, whether it be a garment that doesn’t fit, a replacement part for the incorrect model, or a peripheral incompatible with their device. They might have benefited in these situations from carefully considering their purchase, but it makes sense that they would want to avoid ending up with a product they can’t use.

Ensure any products with compatibility issues are clearly stated in the product description, preferably at or near the top, to minimize the number of returns resulting from this.

Additionally, you should provide customers with an extensive list of compatible goods for which it is simple to search.

Many online retailers have started asking customers about the product size when they leave a review for items that come in different sizes. The percentage of reviewers who said the item ran small, ran large, or was true to the listed size is then displayed in a chart next to the offered sizes.

2.2. The vendor sent the incorrect item or size

On the other hand, there are times when a customer correctly places an order, but the merchant ships the incorrect item. In these circumstances, the merchant’s duty to accept the return and send the appropriate item is crystal clear.

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2.3. The item was flawed or damaged

Sometimes, goods leave the warehouse in a damaged or defective state after being damaged during shipping. Again, the retailer is required to give a refund. The customer has a clear right to an undamaged product that works properly or a refund of their money. Examine items and pack them carefully before shipping to prevent this.

Frequent reports of the merchandise being harmed during shipping may indicate that some things need to be adequately shielded. It can be challenging to package purchases, particularly those containing fragile goods or multiple items of varying sizes, so it’s critical to look out for any patterns of persistent problems.

When products arrive frequently damaged, it may be a sign that the shipping company the merchant has chosen needs to do a better job and needs to be changed.

2.4. The product was delivered too late

Some purchases must be made quickly; if the retailer takes too long to process the order or if delivery is delayed for some other reason, the customer won’t need the item. Even though some delays are unavoidable, it is always preferable to ship orders on time and use dependable, swift carriers.

2.5. The customer didn't need the product any more

Sometimes, despite the merchant’s best efforts to complete an order right away, the customer no longer requires it by the time it is delivered. Even though the merchant may not be at fault, the customer is expected to look for a way to get their money back. Once more, the only thing you can do to reduce these returns is to ensure your shipping is quick and dependable.

2.6. The client felt regret after making the purchase

Another frustrating scenario is when a customer makes an impulsive purchase and returns it for no apparent reason. Although it may be tempting to require a justification for returns to protect your revenue, such policies rarely benefit merchants. If a customer cannot return an item, they may instead submit a chargeback even if they have no justifiable grounds to do so.

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2.7. The item was not identical to the description

Customers frequently feel taken advantage of when there is a significant discrepancy between how a product is represented on the merchant’s website or catalogue and its actual appearance or functionality. And who can blame them? This is frequently deemed a legitimate justification for a chargeback, so merchants are typically unable to contest such chargebacks successfully.

By including accurate and thorough product descriptions and images in their marketing materials, retailers can avoid this issue.

Additionally, retailers should exercise caution when using product images supplied by the manufacturer and confirm that they accurately depict the actual item before using them.

2.8. The product failed to meet the customer’s expectations

It’s not always the merchant’s fault when expectations and reality diverge. Customers occasionally make their own assumptions and expect the product to perform functions that the seller has never guaranteed. Since a customer cannot tell how an item will look on them from a product image, fashion items are frequently the subject of these returns as well. In these circumstances, providing a refund can prevent chargebacks and maintain client loyalty.

Gift concept

2.9. The item was a gift

Gift-giving can be difficult, and it’s common to include the disclaimer, “You can return it if you don’t like it.” That is what occurs in many instances.

2.10. The customer discovered a better deal elsewhere

Seeing the item you just bought offered for sale at a much lower price elsewhere is the best way to induce buyer’s remorse. Offering price-matching guarantees is one way to stop your competitors from undercutting you and incurring losses.

2.11. The customer was wardrobing

The act of buying something with the intention of returning it after using it for a specific purpose is known as “wardrobing.” It could be a speciality item bought for a single use, a dress worn to a special occasion, or a sizable TV purchased for a Super Bowl party.

Wardrobing is a clear example of a customer abusing a merchant’s return policy. Still, if you reject them, you might end up dealing with a friendly fraud chargeback because a customer who’s willing to buy and return something with bad intentions is probably also willing to lie about the reason for a chargeback.

2.12. The transaction was fraudulent

Returns can also be used to hide funds obtained through credit card fraud. Using a stolen card, the fraudster purchases the item and then sells it for cash. Offering refunds only to the original card or in-store credit for card purchases is one way to avoid this. Still, it’s better to completely avoid it by using anti-fraud tools that block stolen card transactions.

Does your company need an easy way to give return request form approval? Thanks to the PerformFlow add-on, you can approve or reject those refund requests via email. It takes minutes to set it up; no coding is needed!

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