Common Dropshipping Customer Issues and How to Prevent Them

David Linder

David Linder

I write about dropshipping, ecommerce and marketing. Owner of the worlds best product research agency for Dropshippers.
5 min read

An unhappy customer can hurt your dropshipping business reputation if you don’t know how to handle their issues properly.


Customer complaints can arise when you’re dropshipping products. As you don’t handle the packing and shipping of products, you don’t know exactly how every order from your dropshipping store is going to play out. People can react to the same problem differently thus, the possibility of some unhappy customers making a mountain out of a molehill. While some customers can stay calm and patient when facing some problems, others can take their anger elsewhere and hurt your business with negative comments and reviews on forums, reviews, and social media sites.

No matter how organized you are with your business, customer complaints can happen because people are just different. You should be prepared to handle their issues properly to avoid getting your dropshipping business ruined. Keeping everything under control is no easy task and not everyone can be appeased with your explanation or offers. Yet, damage can be huge if you don’t do anything at all or you mishandle a complaint.  You’ll end up processing refunds or get charged with chargeback fees.



Here are some guidelines you can follow to deal with any kind of customer complaints you may encounter in your dropshipping business.

  1. Stay calm while handling customer complaints even if they insult you personally.
  2. Even if the customers are wrong, don’t say they’re wrong explicitly.
  3. Treat your customers with kindness and respect because it is the best way to handle them.
  4. Vanish customer suspicions by admitting that the problem exists and promise to investigate the matter.
  5. Offer solutions to customer issues that will help make them see the real situation so they can feel more relaxed about their purchases.
  6. If you made the mistake, make it up to your customers by offering something to express your sincere apology. Here’s what you can do in any of these situations:


Damaged items

Offer to send a new one or make a refund.

Wrong product

Apologize and try to convince the customer to keep it. Send a discount coupon or a free item to prevent them from spreading negative feedback about you.


If you made any shipping mistakes, read this article on how to resolve them. Most sales transactions will go smoothly but once in a while, the customer may file a dispute with their card company to reverse the charges.


Why do customers file a dispute?

These are the three instances that a customer may file a dispute and what you can do to prevent them.


#1 The product was not received.

The customer claims that they have paid what they ordered but didn’t get it. To prevent or reduce losses for this claim, you have to be transparent with your shipping times. Don’t make the mistake of hiding it because it can be used against you when the customer files for a chargeback. Here are other measures you can implement at your store:

  • Provide realistic dates to your customers to avoid the premature filing of disputes.
  • Use a shipping service with online tracking to show that the product was shipped.
  • Get a signature confirmation from the customer that the package has been accepted for items valued above $200.
  • Buy shipping insurance for expensive or fragile items.
  • Don’t ship overnight high-risk orders and delay them for at least 48 hours to avoid getting victimized by fraudsters.


#2 The product is different than what they ordered for.

The item received is significantly different than the one the customer ordered in terms of color and features or it is an entirely different product. To avoid this from happening, here’s what you can do to meet the expectations of your customers.

  • Provide detailed product descriptions.
  • Disclose any cosmetic damage or functional defects if selling refurbished items.
  • Respond to customer’s questions clearly and promptly to prevent a small problem from worsening.


#3 Unauthorized transactions made without customer consent.

The dispute arises when the customer does not recognize or recall the merchant name in their billing statement. Sometimes it can be a simple misunderstanding or mistake when your domain name does not match your merchant account. You can prevent this by making this clear on your invoices and website details. To prevent escalation of the issue, work with your customer to resolve what happened.

Sometimes the customers will bypass you to file a dispute with their card company to reverse the charge. This is called chargeback wherein the card issuer will contact your merchant account provider and ask you to clarify the dispute details. When a chargeback occurs, you have to respond within the allotted period and show some evidence like a copy of transaction invoices, proof of delivery, and so on.


Chargebacks can take a long time and can lead to huge losses for your business. To avoid disputes and chargebacks in your dropshipping business, these are other measures you can put in place:

  • Provide contact information such as a phone number and an email address. If you’re selling high-ticket dropshipping products, call the customers in advance. Be responsive to customer questions to resolve the issues without filing disputes.
  • If the customers inform you that they will be filing a chargeback with their card company, suggest a dispute resolution with your payment processor. PayPal has a resolution center for opening dispute.
  • Place clear return and refund policies on your website where customers could easily find and read it.


Final Words

There are solutions to any dropshipping issues involving the customers. Yet, prevention is still better especially with chargebacks. Although you can dispute a chargeback by responding to them and attaching evidence, there is no guarantee of success. Take the necessary steps to ensure excellent and responsive customer service and superior product quality. Make sure that you have easily accessible shipping, return and refund policies for customers. And when chargeback happens, respond promptly and submit evidence to increase your chances of winning a chargeback process.

David Linder

David Linder

I write about dropshipping, ecommerce and marketing. Owner of the worlds best product research agency for Dropshippers.

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