Chargeback Management: Effective Online Strategies to Protect Your Profits


Want help with your bookkeeping? We make it easy. Get started, Speak w/ a Founder, or Schedule a Callback

chargeback management

Image sourced from Unsplash


Millions of online transactions occur daily worldwide, making the frequency of chargebacks unsurprising. In 2022, mid-market ecommerce businesses globally dealt with chargeback management issues as chargebacks occurred in 2.8% of online orders, according to 2023 data from Statista. In contrast, small and midsize businesses (SMBs) experienced it with 2.4% of their transactions.


Nowadays, every $100 in chargebacks can cost companies an estimated $240 in total associated revenue, considering the resources they spend on handling the claims (Merchant Risk Council, 2023). While consumers have the right to get their cash back if wrongfully charged, these incidents add to your operational costs, affecting your revenues, company image, and financial plans.


Luckily, you can take advantage of online strategies for effective chargeback management to protect your profits and your business.



Proactive Preventive Measures


Preventive measures against chargebacks can save you from spending extra on lost products, overhead expenses, and other additional fees. By dealing with potential issues before they escalate, you can protect your profits, improve customer satisfaction, and keep operational efficiency. You can start with the following preemptive steps:


1. Create clear refund or return policies


You can create concise refund policies by defining terms, conditions, eligibility criteria, and procedures in simple and easily accessible language. Demonstrating your provisions through examples can help further clarify them for your customers.


Updating your customers about policy changes can also strengthen your relationships with them. Some online businesses, such as those on Amazon, are allowed small fees for returns within 30 days from purchase. This gives them some financial cushion when customers return products.


Ecommerce platforms may also conveniently provide business owners with features that display returned products, such as the Shopify Refund Report.


2. Use fraud detection tools


The technology available to you today can help you perform essential business tasks more efficiently if you know how to leverage them. Ecommerce fraud protection tools can help you speed up fraud identification by sifting through transaction data, pinpointing suspicious patterns, or recognizing possible threats and hacking attempts, among other useful features.


3. Ensure accurate inventory


An accurate inventory means that you are on top of things in terms of your merchandise directory. Poor inventory management can negatively affect organizational performance, leading to stock-outs, overstocking, lost sales, low turnover levels, and recordkeeping errors, among others.


You will also be able to see the products in demand and refine procurement activities. An up-to-date record also benefits your employees, informing marketing, sales, and financial decisions.


4. Add clear product descriptions


Product descriptions must give your customers an overview of their preferred items. They must include product features, specifications, dimensions, materials, and usage instructions. Letting your customers know about the benefits and issues that they may encounter with your products can also reflect well on your brand and how you care for your customers.


High-quality images of your products can also give customers a good look at what they will be spending their money on. Adding other insightful details, such as for best sellers and frequently returned products, also helps them to know which quality products to buy and you to know which products need improvement.


5. Provide transparent pricing


Clear pricing, including taxes and shipping fees, informs your customers from the get-go about the amount necessary to purchase their preferred products. This minimizes unnecessary back-and-forths and disputes between them and your team due to miscommunication. Smooth browsing experiences and transactions can then contribute to customer satisfaction and loyalty.


6. Supply accurate shipping and payment information


This may mean linking reliable shipping companies with tracking systems. You can provide customers with instant updates on order and delivery status as well as tracking numbers. Enabling multiple payment and delivery options can also simplify online transactions for them. But you must provide data and use third-party solutions that are authentic, ensuring cybersecurity for your ecommerce businesses.



Efficient Dispute Handling


To manage disputes efficiently, including chargeback management, you must get the basics right first—open and reliable communication channels, quick response times, as well as methodical documentation.


Remember, while it is important to take care of your customers, you also need to watch your back to avoid getting scammed. The following initiatives can support you when the chargeback process starts:


1. Secure transaction data


Collecting your customer and transaction information gives you and card issuers the proof you need to assess the problem and its cause. As you piece together your audit trail, you also get a logical picture of the authenticity of customer claims. Important details to gather may include:


  • Purchase details
  • Order confirmation
  • Shipping data
  • Customer interactions, including emails, chats, and calls
  • Proof of payment, including official receipts and transaction IDs
  • IP address
  • Device information
  • Chargeback reason codes


2. Dispute the dispute


If customer claims are unjustifiable through your trail of documents, you can dispute chargebacks within the deadline established by card issuers. Submit your collected transaction data and a chargeback rebuttal letter, which concisely explains that the chargeback is groundless based on your informed assessment. But you must also consider if the claims are worth fighting against to begin with, as disputing chargebacks will also cost you resources, such as time, money, and manpower.


3. Take the win—or loss


In 2023, credit card fraud ranked first in volume in the identity-theft category in the United States (US). The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) got 416,582 reports on misused information with existing or new credit cards that year, according to the 2023 Consumer Sentinel Network Data Book. As a result, about $246 million were lost to fraudulent behavior through this payment channel, the data book revealed.


These facts tell us that consumers and businesses alike must be thorough and vigilant when it comes to processing sensitive data and payments. If you do the necessary preventive and chargeback-management efforts and customer claims end up illegitimate, that is a win for you. But if you verify that your customer is indeed a victim of fraud, then that is a win for both you and your customer. Honoring their warranted needs strengthens their trust in you and builds a positive reputation for your business.


Protecting Your Business with the Use of Data


chargeback management

Image sourced from Pexels


The business world has been benefiting from data analytics even when everything was still manual. Today, digital tools can optimize your organizational processes, including database management to store data and insights for you to know where your business stands.


For example, inventory management solutions can aid in securing your product database. These business solutions can also eliminate human errors and expedite the cross-examination of raw data, helping you divert your attention, manpower, and finances to other key areas of your business.


Data analytics can also improve the effectiveness of your chargeback management process. For example, anomaly detection can be accomplished by using different statistical methods and algorithms based on machine learning (ML). ML-based algorithms can absorb sequences of standard data and tag instances of irregularities.


The International Association of Business Analytics Certification (IABAC) also suggests these fraud detection techniques:

  • Clustering algorithms. Clustering algorithms like DBSCAN and k-means are used for gathering similar anomalies.
  • Feature engineering. Feature engineering increases the accuracy of fraud detection through relevant feature identification, creation, and reduction.
  • Fraud-detection model development and training. Developing and training predictive models through supervised (with labeled data) and unsupervised (with unlabeled data) enhances the precision of detection.
  • Stream-processing techniques. Stream-processing techniques lets you assess data in real time through information segmentation and parallel data processing.


Fraudulent behavior can also manifest in different ways. Anomalies may include unusual purchasing patterns, questionable IP addresses, and inconsistent payment details:

  • Unusual Transaction Patterns. These show transactions that deviate significantly from typical consumer behavior. These include large orders, recurrent purchases from new or rarely used accounts, or products bought at unexpected times of day.
  • Suspicious IP Addresses. Transactions coming from IP addresses known for high levels of scams or from uncommon geographic locations when compared with customers’ usual behavior can be flagged by fraud detection tools for review. 
  • Inconsistent Payment Details. Conflicting billing and shipping addresses, discrepancies in payment methods, or many failed payment attempts are common anomalies flagged by these tools. This may show as payments made using multiple credit cards under different account names.
  • Rapid Account Changes. Abrupt changes in details, such as emails and shipping addresses, as well as failed login attempts may indicate unauthorized access attempts. Detection of these changes prompts alerts for thorough examination, helping you identify and and prevent potential security breaches and fraudulent activities.
  • Abnormal Device Characteristics. Fraud detection tools also analyze device information, like operating systems, browser versions and the device model, to detect inconsistencies, including transactions initiated from outdated or unusual devices.



What Is EcomBalance? 



EcomBalance is a monthly bookkeeping service specialized for eCommerce companies selling on Amazon, Shopify, Ebay, Etsy, WooCommerce, & other eCommerce channels.


We take monthly bookkeeping off your plate and deliver you your financial statements by the 15th or 20th of each month.


You’ll have your Profit and Loss Statement, Balance Sheet, and Cash Flow Statement ready for analysis each month so you and your business partners can make better business decisions.


Interested in learning more? Schedule a call with our CEO, Nathan Hirsch.


And here’s some free resources:


Strengthen Your Chargeback Management Process


In conclusion, effective chargeback management is imperative for online businesses to protect profits, reputation, and financial stability. With millions of daily transactions, chargebacks pose crucial challenges that affect operational costs and customer trust. But by putting preemptive measures in place, managing claims efficiently, and taking advantage of fraud detection tools, businesses can alleviate chargeback risks and protect their profits.


In an ever-changing ecommerce landscape, customer safety and payment security are paramount. Prioritizing these can strengthen consumer trust and reduce the negative effects of chargebacks on your bottom line.


Want bookkeeping off your plate? We’ve got you! Get started, Speak w/ a Founder, or Schedule a Callback

Recent Posts

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Exclusive finance guide

Want better bookkeeping?

It's possible! Subscribe below & we'll send you our Bookkeeping Packet. A pack of resources to teach you about bookkeeping.

You’ll get our Ecommerce Bookkeeping Guide, The 10 Ecommerce Bookkeeping Mistakes Ebook, our Monthly Finance Meeting Agenda, & a few surprises!