Common Holiday Sales Issues for Online Retailers

November 5th, 2013

self-portrait, christmas-styleHoliday sales are extremely important for online businesses. This is the time of year when you get a big boost in sales and you don’t want to miss out on your piece of the multi-billion dollar pie! There are some common problems that many online retailers face for Holiday sales.

1. Starting too late: This is the biggest one. Every year in July, we recommend that if you are going to start an online business, you should get started in the summer in order to catch the most Holiday sales. It’s true! In order to get your store completed, have your marketing plan together and started and get your SEO completed, you are already nearing the Holiday selling season. It takes time to get your online store perfected, and ready for the masses. So if you start too late, you will have to wait until next year!

2. Forgetting about Mobile Shoppers:  This was one of my 7 Deadly Sins of Store Design mishaps and it takes place here too. Mobile shopping is on the rise and many people are turning to mobile devices to search for products to buy and to purchase directly from their smartphones or tablets. If your online store isn’t mobile shopping friendly, you will miss out on these customers because they will be frustrated by searching your site. Most everyone has some sort of mobile device these days, so test your store out and see how your customers would interact with it and make corrections specifically for them.

3. No Marketing Plan: Having no marketing plan is like trying to build a house with no blueprint. Every online store owner needs to have a marketing plan put together and scheduled out. Emails, campaigns, ads, blogs, newsletters….these are just some of the marketing pieces that every online store owner needs. If you don’t have your marketing plan put together for Holiday Sales and you haven’t even begun working on it, you need to hurry. The closer that the Holiday Sales season nears, the less time you have to implement it. You should have your marketing plan for Holiday sales done extremely early in the year or the year before, and scheduled out to work on it a little bit at a time. Don’t procrastinate and don’t forget about all of the OTHER holidays!

4. Don’t Forget to Decorate your Store!: Just like decorating your Christmas Tree and your house every year for Christmas and other holidays, you should decorate your store too. Beautiful graphics representing the season inspire customers to purchase more. Everyone likes the warm, fuzzy feeling that Christmas brings, so try to emulate that in your store. Also, don’t forget that you shouldn’t just dress up your home page. Put something on EVERY page or just on your top landing pages to get the most eyes on it.

5. Don’t Neglect Last Minute Shoppers:  Many people wait until the last minute to buy gifts. So if you feel confident about delivery before Christmas, make sure that your customers know that. I’m sure that you have seen on popular shopping sites…. Order by this date to get it before Christmas! Don’t forget to do that as well so if your customers are shopping around, they will already know that their gift will arrive in time if they shop from your store, but another store may not state that, and they will be back!

photo by: jimw

The 7 Deadly Sins of Online Store Design Sin #7: Personal Opinions

October 29th, 2013

Creating a beautiful, easy to navigate online retail store is a way to get sales and keep customers coming back to you. Over the course of the next 7 weeks I will talk about the 7 Deadly Sins of site design that many new online retailers forget about or commit these sins without thinking about it. Don’t just do things to your site that you like, because there may be too many people that don’t like your favorite choices. You have to have a site design that appeals to a larger crowd.

Below is Sin #7. To see Sin’s #1 though #6 go here; http://www.worldwidebrands.com/blog/

In Everyday UseDeadly Sin #7: Personal Opinions
Keep your personal opinions out of it!

Sad to say, but it’s true, there are retailers online that fill their stores with quotes, images and comments about how they feel about religion, politics, philosophy, and other topics.

Your online store is not a place to vent or to push your beliefs on others. Your store is intended to make sales, so keep your opinions out of it.

I recently visited an online pet store to shop for an interesting and unique collar for my dog, and I did find what I was looking for, but I shut the site down after about 5 minutes. Why? Because I was barraged with quotes and banners for online prayer groups on every page that I looked at, plus annoying music in the background. I have nothing against any type of  religion or music, but what does it have to do with getting a dog collar?

If you want to have a website to talk about and share your favorite quotes and music, then please do so! But they have no place in your online store. If someone doesn’t share the same likes as you, they will get turned off from shopping and close down your store and shop somewhere else. Give the people what they are looking for when they do a search online for a product to sell.

If you can take the time to find banners and music to put onto your store, then use that extra time to fix images and make copy changes for the product pages instead. Your store and your customers will thank you for it!

This concludes the 7 Deadly Sins of Online Store Design. Of course there are more sins that a new online retailer can commit when building an online store. Please keep these 7 sins in mind when you are building or redoing your online store for a better customer experience.

photo by: CarbonNYC

The 7 Deadly Sins of Online Store Design Sin #6: Forgetting about Mobile Shoppers

October 22nd, 2013

Creating a beautiful, easy to navigate online retail store is a way to get sales and keep customers coming back to you. Over the course of the next 7 weeks I will talk about the 7 Deadly Sins of site design that many new online retailers forget about or commit these sins without thinking about it. Don’t just do things to your site that you like, because there may be too many people that don’t like your favorite choices. You have to have a site design that appeals to a larger crowd.

Below is Sin #6. To see Sin’s #1 though #5 go here; http://www.worldwidebrands.com/blog/

Cell Phone
Deadly Sin #6: Forgetting about Mobile Shoppers
Many shoppers want to use their smartphones or tablets to shop online. But many online stores aren’t smartphone or tablet compatible.

Millions of people using their mobile devices and even more or turning to shopping with their smartphones or tablets. According to eMarketer, mobile shopping will get at least 15% share on online retail sales, and estimate 24% by 2016. So make sure that your site is small screen friendly, or get a mobile site specifically for your mobile shoppers.

Large online stores, like Amazon, create shopping apps for smartphones and tablets, but it probably isn’t feasible for a small business owner to have an app, the development costs can be quite high if you cannot do it yourself.

So as a small business owner, what do you do? Optimize your site for starters! A faster website will load more quickly, not just on computers, but on mobile devices as well. Mobile device shoppers are much more sensitive to page speed than computer shoppers. Google has PageSpeed Insights, that will give you suggestions on what you can do to make your store load and operate faster.

Optimizing your images is very important as well. Online stores have A LOT of images on them to show the product off. So un-optimized images will load much slower. Having optimized images will allow you have larger pictures on your site as well. There are free tools you can find online for optimizing and compressing images. Just do a Google search for; Free Image Optimizer. I can’t make any recommendations of which free tool to use, as we use our Photoshop program to optimize images for the web. But look around and try a few out to see which one brings you the best quality at the smallest file size.

There are mobile website builders out there, but a lot of specific mobile sites are seriously lacking still. Hardly any graphics and the navigation seems a little “weird” compared to clicking on a computer with a mouse to navigate. Me personally, I like to click on the Full Site link on these mobile sites to get to the actual website as I would see it on my computer. I know other smartphone users that do the same, because these mobile sites just aren’t pretty or flashy enough to keep our attention. So keep that in mind!

Optimizing your stores images and getting your PageSpeed Insights and correcting those issues, will greatly help your store load better on mobile devices anyway. So do as much as you can to tap into the rising eCommerce mobile market!

photo by: daryl_mitchell

The 7 Deadly Sins of Online Store Design Sin #5: Shopping Cart/Checkout Mishaps

October 15th, 2013

Creating a beautiful, easy to navigate online retail store is a way to get sales and keep customers coming back to you. Over the course of the next 7 weeks I will talk about the 7 Deadly Sins of site design that many new online retailers forget about or commit these sins without thinking about it. Don’t just do things to your site that you like, because there may be too many people that don’t like your favorite choices. You have to have a site design that appeals to a larger crowd.

Below is Sin #5. To see Sin’s #1 though #4 go here; http://www.worldwidebrands.com/blog/

Shopping CartDeadly Sin #5: Shopping Cart/Checkout Mishaps
A major downfall of many online stores is their shopping cart/checkout sequence.

If you take your customers through a long and lengthy checkout process, they may just up and leave half way through. I have seen checkouts with large forms to fill out, multiple pages to go through and pages upon pages of suggested products to add to my shopping cart before I can even enter my credit card details.

Keep this in mind, your customer has already been on your site for a while debating on the right product to buy, and then you hit them with a lengthy checkout process. Don’t do it! If you want your customers to register, and get a login for a My Account area, please do so! But do it AFTER they purchase or give them the option during the checkout process to choose to do that right from the start.

Again, take a look at your favorite stores and see how their checkout process is setup. Did they ask you a poll? Ask you to fill out a survey? Request that you sign up for their mailing list in the middle of the checkout process? Show you dozens of other products to add to your cart as suggested selling, but it was obtrusive? The answer to all of these is most likely, No!

I can understand if you want to ask your customers some questions or request to join your mailing list, but send them an email with an invitation to fill out a poll or a survey AFTER they have bought. It’s less obtrusive and the customer would be more willing to answer questions after they buy because they know who you are at that point.

photo by: Navicore

The 7 Deadly Sins of Online Store Design Sin #4: You Forgot about K.I.S.S.

October 8th, 2013

KissCreating a beautiful, easy to navigate online retail store is a way to get sales and keep customers coming back to you. Over the course of the next 7 weeks I will talk about the 7 Deadly Sins of site design that many new online retailers forget about or commit these sins without thinking about it. Don’t just do things to your site that you like, because there may be too many people that don’t like your favorite choices. You have to have a site design that appeals to a larger crowd.

Below is Sin #4. To see Sin’s #1 though #3 go here; http://www.worldwidebrands.com/blog/

Deadly Sin #4: You Forgot about K.I.S.S.!
K.I.S.S stands for, and it’s blunt, Keep It Simple Stupid!

This applies to many things in life, including store design. The simpler it is for consumers to find the products on your site, the easier it is for them to purchase something, the better.

Having easy to navigate categories and sub-categories will make your site much more simple to browse. I have seen on some great sites that keep their navigation all on the left or the right. I have seen others that have those categories on the left or right, but then sub-category on the main screen to narrow down your results.

Take a look at one of your favorite shopping sites to see how they setup their navigation to get some ideas. Because if you like to shop there, then many others do too, so they are doing something right!

Also, don’t fill your store up with large graphics and moving graphics, background music, weird layouts and more. The cleaner and more simple the store, the better!

Large graphics will make your store “blow up” in that it stretches the screen weird or the image takes over all your text. Moving graphics are great, but keep in mind customers with slow computers, slow internet or mobile devices.

Background music is just plain annoying. Let’s keep the music on the music channels please! When I personally go to a site that contains music, I try to get off there as fast as possible or immediately shut off my speakers and of course annoyed that I have to hurry and do that!

You don’t want to annoy your customers as soon as they land in your online store! Keep it simple, clean and easy to navigate! 🙂

The 7 Deadly Sins of Online Store Design Sin #3: Poor Font Choices

October 1st, 2013

Mixed Media Painting (Detail) by Choichun Leung / Dumbo Arts CenCreating a beautiful, easy to navigate online retail store is a way to get sales and keep customers coming back to you. Over the course of the next 7 weeks I will talk about the 7 Deadly Sins of site design that many new online retailers forget about or commit these sins without thinking about it. Don’t just do things to your site that you like, because there may be too many people that don’t like your favorite choices. You have to have a site design that appeals to a larger crowd.

Below is Sin #3. To see Sin #1 & #2 go here; http://www.worldwidebrands.com/blog/

Deadly Sin #3: Poor Font Choices
Just like with color, you have to really think about the font types that you want to use. Not just for your header, but also for your content, your navigation and more.

So why is this important? What do you do with content? Hopefully read it! There are so many websites out there that use tiny, hard to read font, cramming content together or just use an ugly font that is makes it extremely hard to read their content, and some of it might be good!

Choosing the right font style and format for your online store will already put you ahead of the competition and for something so easy, you would think that everyone would do it right!

Stray away from flowery scriptive fonts because they are just too hard to read and you have to appeal to the masses. So try to choose easy to read fonts and don’t be afraid to have LARGE text because that would make it easier for older shoppers or shoppers with poor eyesight to shop. So don’t be afraid to try out different fonts and sizes to compare what looks the best with your overall theme.

The color of your font to coincide with your background is important too. If you choose a white background and yellow font, that would make it too hard to read. Black on white and white on black are the easiest color choices and most widely used because it’s familiar. But if your store overall theme color is lavender, you can use a dark purple for your font on a white background and it works well. So just adjust and try different things to see what you like and what works.

Bold, italics and caps. Don’t overuse these additional styles that you can add to your font. Otherwise your customer won’t know where to look.

Bold is used for emphasis or to draw your attention to something. Use for headings or sub-headings.
Italics is used for emphasis as well.  Like keywords, quotes, captions or titles.
– All CAPS for words or sentences make them hard to read, so avoid using as much as possible except for short words that you want to emphasize. Most people feel that all caps makes them feel as if they are being shouted at. So keep that in mind.

Choosing the right font may not seem that important, but it really is and you should be extremely thoughtful in your selections. Because a good overall font and the font color choices will really help to personalize your store and if they all work together to make everything easy on the eyes you will be rewarded by customers and repeat customers!

Ask your friends and your family members their thoughts on your font choices. Getting a large diversity of people you know to check our your store and give you honest feedback is the best way to get the font choices nailed.

The 7 Deadly Sins of Online Store Design Sin #2: Poor Images

September 24th, 2013

Camera expoCreating a beautiful, easy to navigate online retail store is a way to get sales and keep customers coming back to you. Over the course of the next 7 weeks I will talk about the 7 Deadly Sins of site design that many new online retailers forget about or commit these sins without thinking about it. Don’t just do things to your site that you like, because there may be too many people that don’t like your favorite choices. You have to have a site design that appeals to a larger crowd.

Below is Sin #2. To see Sin #1 go here; http://www.worldwidebrands.com/blog/the-7-deadly-sins-of-online-store-design-sin-1-color/

Deadly Sin #2: Small and Poor Images
Poor images on a website make the entire shopping experience poor.

Since the customer can’t actually pick up the product and look at it, you need to provide them with enough clear images to make them feel as if they are. Images shot from different angles are important and images of the product in use are also helpful.

You may be using a dropship wholesale supplier that provides you with images to use. But look closely at those images. If they are too small, you need to make them bigger, or request larger file sizes from the supplier so you can conform them to your site. If they only give you one image, you should request more or purchase the product to take your own images to show it off properly.

You also want all of your images to look similar. If you are using more than one supplier for your online store, but one supplier has a black background on their images and the other uses white, change the backgrounds to all match and choose a color that looks good in your store.

Having multiple images to show the product off, and having all of the images look similar will make your store look cleaner and more professional. It will also allow the customer to think that you are the one fulfilling the products directly. There is nothing worse than an online store with poor images!

Photoshop is a great program that you can use to edit images, but Photoshop is a large costly program and has a learning curve involved. Or maybe there is someone that you know that is good at graphic work that could help you out. 🙂 There are places on the web that you can hire low cost help; services like that can be found on eLance.com and Fiverr.com

photo by: auggie tolosa

The 7 Deadly Sins of Online Store Design – Sin #1: Color

September 17th, 2013

2.26.09: color wheelCreating a beautiful, easy to navigate online retail store is a way to get sales and keep customers coming back to you. Over the course of the next 7 weeks I will talk about the 7 Deadly Sins of site design that many new online retailers forget about or commit these sins without thinking about it. Don’t just do things to your site that you like, because there may be too many people that don’t like your favorite choices. You have to have a site design that appeals to a larger crowd.

Deadly Sin #1: Poor Color Choices
Choosing a good color theme for your site is extremely important. Don’t just choose what YOU like, because your favorite color of “puce” might not look right online or to others.

Choose colors that are hot in the current trends and is aesthetically pleasant to look at. Do a search for Color Trends to see what everyone is gravitating towards year after year.

Also think about the products you are offering and choose a color that fits. Selling relaxation and mediation products? Choose a soothing, calm color instead of black or bright red that are jarring to look at. Selling sports equipment? Choose fun and playful colors.

Once you have chosen your main color, then choose complimentary colors for sub-menus and other graphic elements. Generally taking your main color and toning it down a bit or picking a color that is a shade lighter or darker looks the best.

Colors set the mood and tone of your site. Did you know that the color orange means optimism? The color yellow is cheerful and blue is trust and peace. Ever hear of color psychology? Colors have meaning and many shoppers will leave a site immediately if the color isn’t pleasing or gives them a wrong impression. Google the term Color Psychology to understand meanings behind colors to help you with your decision.

Ever see a poor color choice for an online store? Share your comments below!

photo by: thedalogs

The Biggest Problem with Datafeeds from Wholesale Suppliers

September 10th, 2013

Pen and PaperDatafeeds, in theory, are great! You can automatically upload the wholesale suppliers product information onto your website without having to go through the process of adding all the products one by one.

However, there is also a big problem when using the same information that all of their other retailers are using. Duplicate Content!

All of these other retailers online are using the same descriptions and images over and over. The consumer searching for the product to buy will come across the same description in the search engine too, so where do they go? The cheapest or the most trustworthy looking site will get their money.

Duplicate content is something to be completely avoided at all costs. Google will punish you for using duplicate content because the way that they look at it is, which website should I serve up for this search query? Avoiding duplicate content will help you get higher results in the search engines. That’s a fact!

So how do you get past this big problem? Writing your own unique targeted descriptions is the best and only way to combat this.

Tips for writing compelling targeted product descriptions:

1. Who are your targeted customers?
Don’t try to market to everyone, that is a mistake and makes boring descriptions. If you are selling a niche product geared towards a certain demographic, write down a list all the things you know about that customer. For example; if you are selling products geared towards new mothers, think about their age range, their worries and fears, who are what is influencing them now?   Do some research, look at lists online, host a poll somewhere….

2.  What is the product going to be used for?
What exactly will your customer use the product for? Cleaning their home? Decorating their home? Using it for work? Using it for school? Ask yourself all the ways that someone could use that product and make a list. Then list out, WHY they need the product to help them accomplish their task.

3. List out the features of the product.
Does this product have something that a similar product doesn’t? Does it have cool features or smell wonderful? List all of the features and write short descriptions on color, smell, size etc.

4. Draw a lot of attention to the benefits of the product.
Describing the benefits of a product will help the customer decide to purchase from you. How will this product benefit them? How will it improve their life?

5. Don’t be afraid to inject your personality into your online store!
Non-compelling descriptions are boring. Bring some life and character into your store by injecting your own personality into it. Are you a funny person? Don’t be afraid to joke if the product deserves it! Are you a loving and caring person? Bring some sentimentality into your store if you are selling products that could benefit from loving and caring words!

So, once you have your lists together, then you are ready to start talking about the product on your website for the product description. Look online and find examples on how to lay it all out. There are some really fantastic websites out there, some you probably already shop at that have compelling product descriptions.

Make these examples an influence, but don’t copy!

photo by: kdinuraj

How to Prevent Fraudulent Orders and Chargebacks for Your Online Store

August 20th, 2013

Accepting Credit Cards in your online storeThere are many practices put into place in order to ensure customer safety with credit card companies when someone buys online. Unfortunately there isn’t much that the credit card companies offer to help merchants, but what they do provide will be a big help.

Keep reading to learn about how to prevent Fraud & Chargebacks, how to recognize problem orders and how the security features that the credit card companies DO offer are important and how to use them.

This is important, because ignoring the problems and receiving a large number of chargebacks will create issues with your  merchant account provider and could ultimately end up with your merchant account cancelled and your reputation ruined.

You need to take the appropriate steps to ensure the safety of your business.  Remember, you take on this responsibility all to yourself since you will not get outside assistance from your merchant provider or from the credit card companies if you blatantly accept fraud orders.

First, you need to learn how to recognize potential fraud. Here are some signs to help trigger you into action;
1. The order is LARGE or totals a HIGH dollar amount.
Large orders that contain several quantities of the same products or orders that are made up of mostly high ticket items are a good indication of fraud. Anything that is out of the norm is something to watch out for.

2. Orders placed with free email addresses, like Hotmail, Yahoo or Gmail…etc.
Free email accounts cannot be verified. But if someone places a high dollar order and their email address is JohnDoe@comcast.net, then that particular order may be OK. But you should always implement the steps that will be provided later on down this article for these situations.

3. Orders shipped to the same address but used multiple credit cards to order multiple times.
Pay close attention to all previous and following orders if you suspect fraud. Many fraudulent buyers will place multiple orders one after another and then move on to attack another website.

4. Shipping Warnings
Many fraudulent orders are from international consumers. So be mindful of all international orders. Another shipping warning is the customer used a different shipping address and billing address for the order.

Here are the things that credit card companies offer to help deter fraudulent transactions and to help you decide to decline an order;
1. CSC, CVV, CV2, CVC, CCV
It doesn’t matter what you call it, it’s all the same thing; Card Security Code, Card Verification Value, Card Verification Code, Card Code Verification. It’s the little 3 numbers on the back of your Visa, MasterCard or Discover Cards, or the 4 numbers on the front of your American Express card. Requiring your customers to enter these numbers while placing an order will give you a match or no match result. Non-matched CVC’s are a good indication of fraudulent orders and the order should be auto-declined.

2. AVS
Address Verification Service is an important feature from your merchant provider. If the billing address that the customer provides doesn’t match what is on file with the cardholder, that is an indicator of a fraud purchase. Discover card will auto-decline any order that has a no match for AVS, but the other credit card companies will not, so most fraud customers will use the other types of cards.

Things you can do to prevent fraudulent purchases:
1. Simply do not accept international orders.
The AVS, doesn’t check international addresses. As a result, the address cannot be verified for the order. Not accepting international orders all together will help prevent fraud orders. However, if you do decide to accept international orders, keep in mind the location of the purchase. There are about a 20 countries that yield the most fraudulent orders and should be avoided completely. Then of course there are the US sanctioned countries that you shouldn’t be selling to at all. You can find lists of these countries by going a Google search. One important thing to note, AVS will check Canada orders.

2.   Call the customer!
The easiest and most effective way to deter fraud is to call the customer! Simply call them to verify the purchase and their shipping address for their order.

3. Check your customer out!
Not only do your customers need to understand and know who you are, you need to know who your customer is as well. There are free sites online to help you do a couple of things… Reverse telephone lookup. Take the customers phone number and put it into a reverse phone search. Check to see the location of the phone number, and if the number is listed, it will even give you with names and a portion of their address so you can verify the telephone. Do this before calling the customer! http://www.whitepages.com/reverse_phone is a free service you could use.

With all of the social sites online, most people have a Twitter or Facebook account. Search your customers name with their location, and see if you can narrow down the social sites that may belong to your customer. You can then check them out there too.

Google Maps! Entering the customers address into a google search will give you a satellite view of their home address. If the address provided is a mail service or points to a non-residential address, that will help in determining fraud as well.

Yes, this may make you feel a little bit like a stalker! But, you are just protecting your business! Remember, you don’t have to do these things with all of your orders, just ones that you feel may be non-legitimate.

The dreaded chargeback! What you need to have in place!
1. Contact Information
Have your contact information, including a telephone number easily accessible by your customers or non-customers. Make is as easy as possible for them to call you, instead of immediately calling their bank. One of the biggest reasons for a chargeback is that the customer doesn’t recognize the charge. Make sure that their credit card statements will show your store name and telephone number so they can reach you about the order.

If you are under the situation where your registered business name and store name do not match, then always communicate to your buyers, and multiple times, that the charge on their statement will read XYZ Company, Inc as that is your registered business name, that owns and operates CandlesSmellAwesome.com

2. Policies
Make sure to post all your shipping and refund policies on your site and provide them to the customer in many areas. On their receipts, on the checkout page and etc.

3. Confirmations
Always email a confirmation of their order. If the email bounces back, that is a sign of fraud.

4. Shipping Reasons
Another big reason for a chargeback is the customer claiming they didn’t receive what they ordered. To help deter that, always have tracking on all packages and in some cases pay additional for a signature required upon delivery.

The above items will help you with deterring fraud, but it also gives you fuel to fight a chargeback. When you receive a chargeback, it will be for one of two main reasons; 1. the customer doesn’t recognize the charge and 2. the customer didn’t receive what they ordered. What you respond with will help the merchant provider determine whether the claim is valid or false. Always respond with what they ask for, but provide more if you can too. The more information you give, the better.

We have a set way that we respond to chargebacks and you can follow our guideline that will help you put together what you need;

1. Customer name, address, telephone number, email address, date of order, cost of order and what they ordered.
We list this information first when responding to a chargeback.

Example Statement: Customer John Doe, located at 123 Main Street, Anytown, FL 123456, telephone; 555-555-5555, purchased on 7/19/2013 a set of vanilla bean candles from our store at CandlesSmellAwesome.com. After purchase, we immediately sent a confirmation of the order to the provided email address; johndoe@comcast.net

2. Merchant Receipt
Provide a copy of the merchant receipt that shows AVS Matched.

Example Statement: Following is a copy of our merchant receipt that shows AVS matched. The AVS helped us to determine that this wasn’t a fraudlent charge.

3. Shipping & Tracking Information
Keep all tracking numbers and shipping addresses on file. Go to your shipping provider’s site, and use the tracking number to get a screen shot of the delivery information.

Example Statement: We shipped the customer’s order to the same address that was provided as the billing address. On 7/20/2013 we shipped via UPS with the tracking number 123456789. This item was sent and delivered to 123 Main Street, Anytown, FL 123456. Following is a screen shot of UPS’s site at ups.com that shows the order was delivered. 

4. Tracking Customer Communication
If the customer at any time contacted you via email or phone, document it. Keeping records of your customer communication will assist you with fighting a chargeback. Also see if your shopping cart provider has IP tracking. Having an IP address for all your customers will also help in determining fraud and fighting fraud. You can use IP lookup services online to verify the customer’s location.

Example Statement: Additionally, we have communicated with this customer on 2 occasions. The first occasion was via email when the customer asked us about the vanilla bean candles they ended up ordering. Please find a copy of that communication below.

The second occasion where we communicated with this customer was when we called the number provided on 7/19/2013, and verified the order and ship to address.

We also use IP tracking for all orders. The customer ordered with the IP address; 123.45.6789 which matches their location in Anytown, FL

As long you as are mindful of all orders, keep good records & communicate the important things to your customer, and often. You won’t receive many chargebacks. The ones that you DO receive, may be valid fraud orders that slipped through, and no one can be faulted for that but you and you will have to pay for it.

photo by: 401(K) 2012