First....DON'T PANIC!...especially when a customer's claim is nasty or intimidating!
eBay reports "only 1/3 of shoppers read product descriptions" while many claims as NOT AS DESCRIBED are used to avoid buyer return shipping costs and no longer a defect according to 2016 Seller Performance Standards. However, a defect is at risk, if you or the customer asks eBay to step in and they side with the buyer. Learning how to turn a negative situation to a positive experience is vital to your success.
Arm Yourself Gathering Facts BEFORE responding.
What is your supplier's return policy on item not as described? Do they offer free return shipping? Many suppliers offer free return shipping, I use Amazon Prime Sellers as my main supplier, since they not only offer free return shipping, but also free UPS Home Pickup.
Now that you are armed with the facts, you need to create documentation of the buyers claim as NOT AS DESCRIBED to protect yourself, if at any point eBay should question the return claim.
If the customer did not clearly define what was not described in the listing description in their claim message, you need to ask. Either way, its beneficial to you to begin a dialouge to reinforce their claim for documentation. Sometimes their response will tell you to make adjustments (large bold Print) in the description to prevent more return requests Most of the time they didn't carefully read the description or read at all, just looking at its pictures.
Typical claim messages state: "photos misleading, I didn't receive as shown."
"Your return request on your recent order has been received. I am sorry to hear you are not happy with your (product name). Our goal is to go the extra mile in providing 100% Customer Satisfaction.
Please elaborate specifically what you found not described in the listing?
This may greatly help us to make adjustments, if need be, in the future.
Awaiting your quick reply."
"I thought I was purchasing a Leaf Blower Vacuum. I only received an attachment, not the Blower as shown in the photos. I need to purchase a Leaf Blower and cannot use this attachment. Please send me prepaid return shipping label and issue refund as soon as possible."
Here's how to turn this around to a positive outcome and document validity of the claim....
"Thank you for your quick reply. I fully understand how you got this impression by looking at the photos alone. However, the photos illustrate how the leaf collection system attaches to a Leaf Blower System. If you refer to its description, you will notice in large bold print...LEAF BLOWER VACUUM IS SOLD SEPARATELY. Did you read the product description?"
"No, I didn't, but photos are still misleading and I want to return it with a full refund. Just give me a pre-paid shipping label so I can return it."
"Ok. No worries. I can arrange for you to simply go to the nearest UPS Dropoff Center to return shipment of your order. Just show them your identification and they will take it from there. Please make sure its packaged exactly how you received it.
However, you might want to consider how this Leaf Collection System has numerous raves on how it saves tons of back-breaking laborious hours removing leaves and reduces to mulch, all in one step.
As I previously mentioned we go the extra mile to assure 100% Customer Satisfaction, so if you see the value and want to keep your Leaf Collection System, I've created a special discount offers, specifically for you to select from our wide variety selections of Leaf Blower Vacuums, just follow this link. (enter code-less coupon offer link)
Otherwise, please let me know, if you decided, you still want to return it so I can make arrangements as soon as possible. Your positive feedback is greatly appreciated."
With 3 simple emails to the customer, you can successfully:
Always take the opportunity to communicate with your customers, even the nasty ones and look at how you can turn it around to a positive win-win experience for both you and the customer.
This is key to becoming a successful business owner.