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General Business Discussions This is a general purpose forum open to business related topics concerning Reptiles and Amphibians that are neither appropriate for the Board of Inquiry, nor sales, purchase, or trade solicitations.

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Old 09-20-2012, 01:45 PM   #1
Shipping/Insurance policy question

I always ship through SYR, and I always purchase their insurance. I don't charge the customer for it, since I charge a flat rate of $50 for shipping and my cost is almost always over that, even before the insurance. Of course, in the event of a DOA, I would give the customer a full refund including shipping (that would happen even if I didn't have insurance). My question isn't so much about what to do in the event of a DOA, it's what should happen in the event of late arrival.

I've had 2 late packages in the last 2 weeks due to Fedex issues. The first one (my first shipping issue ever) I offered the customer a refund of the $50 he paid, and he offered to split it since I spent time getting the issue resolved so that's what I did. The second delay was yesterday and I have offered the customer a refund for that one as well, but haven't gotten a response from her.

My question is this: Should I be refunding their shipping cost? Or should I give customers the option when they purchase to add on time delivery insurance? I'm still working on a detailed TOS, so I want to know what policy I should include. I mentioned to my dad that I was, and he thinks I should not, since they received their snake, I paid for the insurance myself, and their $50 shipping charge covers more than just the actual shipping (box, packing supplies, trip to fedex, etc.). I've had late shipments (I have no idea if the seller had insurance or not), never had anyone offer a refund of the shipping and I didn't expect a refund, so I'm not sure what the policy on this should be, or what the norm is. Hopefully all that made some sort of sense...
Old 09-20-2012, 02:07 PM   #2
I don't know what the norm is either. But if you purchase late shipment insurance and turn that refund over to the customer every time, they are going to talk about it in a positive way and that might buy you some word-of-mouth advertising and additional customer loyalty.
It doesn't seem like the late incidents happen very often. Plus, the insurance you pay may be deductible as a business expense.
Sometimes the little extras you offer to customers can go a long way in putting your name out there in a good way.
Old 09-20-2012, 02:11 PM   #3
That was kinda the train of thought I had when I offered the refunds in the first place. Even if I refund the shipping the buyer paid, I still benefit somewhat since my cost for shipping is usually $10-$20 over what I charge...It's just been something we have been discussing lately since we had two late shipments in a short time period (the only two delays I've had).

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insurance, shipping, tos

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