Running an Etsy store can be tricky. You can make every possible attempt to make a transaction go smoothly, but eventually things will happen outside of your control. The main culprit in my experience is shipping providers.
Things go wrong with shipping. Lost packages, late deliveries, items being left in strange places – the list is endless. The question becomes, how do you compensate the customer? The answer is usually refunding their postage as a gesture of goodwill.
How do I refund postage on Etsy? To refund shipping on Etsy you need to:
- go to etsy.com and login to your store account
- click “Shop Manager“
- click “Orders & Delivery” tab and find the order you want to refund the shipping on
- on the order details screen select “More actions” dropdown and select “Refund“
- on the shipping line enter the shipping amount in the “Amount to refund” field
- Click Review refund
- Click Submit.
Do You Have To Refund Shipping On Etsy?
No, you don’t have to offer a shipping refund if something happens to a package in transit. Packages get lost, and this is something outside of your control.
An offer of a shipping refund can help if things are getting tense with a customer, or if you feel you made a mistake that led to the issue with delivery.
As with all things around customer service, you need to decide what your policies are and to communicate those with the customer. This makes things fair for the customer, and takes some of the “case-by-case” decisions away from you.
Do Full Refunds Include Shipping?
Yes, when you issue a full refund in Etsy the customer will also be refunded for the amount paid for shipping.
If you only want to refund for the items (e.g. if one item is defective) then you can use the “Amount to refund” field in the “Refund” screen to only refund for the chosen amount.
Again, be sure to communicate with your customer about what exactly you are refunding and why.
How Long Do Etsy Refunds Take?
Etsy refunds are usually very quick. They will often be issued back to the customer in a matter of minutes. However during busy periods it can take up to 24-48 hours to go through.
Whenever I issue a refund I make it clear with the customer about what the timescales for a refund are.
This prevents follow up questions about why their refund hasn’t gone through. Be sure to also make it clear that you are not in control over when the refund will get them. All queries about transactions and refunds should be directed at Etsy customer services.
How To Refund Shipping If An Item Has “Free Shipping” On Etsy?
Offering shipping refunds can be tricky if you offer free shipping. How can you give a shipping refund if you haven’t charged them directly for it?
The best way around this is to offer a partial refund for the amount spent on shipping. This will require you to know how much you spend on each shipment, so tracking expenses is important to achieve this – if you don’t track each package cost use the amount allocated to shipping when you calculate profit margins.
Once you have the value follow the steps outlined above, only when it comes to entering the amount, enter it in the first item’s “Amount to refund” field.
This way you are effectively refunding the shipping, as the amount is baked into the price of the first item.
There are many ways to issue refunds on Etsy. The most common ways are to either refund for specific items, refund just shipping, or by offering a full refund.
Offering a full refund can be done simply using the “Cancel” options in Etsy, where as the partial refunds can be done using the “Amount to refund” fields in the “Refund” screen.
There is no obligation as a seller to issue a shipping refund, but it is a simple way to make up for an issue with a customer’s order.